Keeping corporations out of politics abridges free speech

Keeping corporations out of politics abridges free speech

By Seth Grossman, Political Columnist

Every week, this newspaper publishes a letter or column that in some way attacks or ridicules people like me who believe in America?s ?exceptional? 400-year tradition of individual liberty, limited government, and low taxes.

Several of them remarked that conservatives are for big corporations, and that Republicans even believe that ?corporations are people.?


Corporations, of course, are not people. But they are voluntary associations of people. People form corporations when they join with others for a common purpose, but don?t want to be personally responsible for the debts of the group if the venture fails. Anyone can form a corporation by filling out some simple forms and paying a small filing fee to the state treasurer.

People form a ?for profit? corporation when they join with others to earn money. This is usually done by producing, buying, or selling things that people want ? and are willing to pay for. Some, like McDonalds Corporation, are big and have thousands of shareholders and employees. Others, like Traa Corporation of Pleasantville, which owns and runs some local McDonalds restaurants, are small family owned operations.

People get together to form ?non-profit? corporations to pursue other goals. Some, like the Red Cross or the NJEA, are big. Others, like Liberty and Prosperity 1776, Inc. and the Praise Tabernacle Church, are small.

Citizens United, Inc. is a non-profit corporation that promotes conservative ideas by producing and distributing documentary movies.

In 2008, Citizens United produced ?Hillary ? The Movie,? which was highly critical of Hillary Clinton, then the leading Democrat candidate for president. But the McCain-Feingold Federal Campaign ?Reform? Law of 2002 made it a federal crime for any private citizen to put that movie on TV before any federal election.

That law was supported by left-wing, pay-to-play Democrats like Ted Kennedy and Jon Corzine. It stopped wealthy conservatives from making big contributions to Republicans, while big Democrat unions could still force millions of their members to bankroll campaigns for Democrats. This law was also supported by clueless ?moderate? Republicans like George Bush and John McCain.

But Citizens United fought this ?Federal Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act? in court saying it violated the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

The First Amendment says ?Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech.?

Five Republican justices of the U.S. Supreme Court said the Federal Campaign ?Reform? Law violated this First Amendment in not letting Citizens United put its movie on TV. It also said the people who ran Citizens United, Inc., did not lose their constitutional rights of free speech rights simply because they had organized themselves as a corporation.

The only thing shocking and disturbing about the Citizens United case is that all four Democrats on the U.S. Supreme Court denied that this law ?abridged? free speech. They also denied that the people who formed Citizens United were protected by the Constitution.

If Democrat Barack Obama is re-elected and replaces just one Republican on the Supreme Court, Congress will be free to make a whole lot of new laws to abridge the freedom of speech even more.

They have already proposed ?fairness? laws that would remove Rush Limbaugh, me, and anyone else who challenges the ?progressive? left from radio and TV ? just like in China, Venezuela, and other ?progressive? countries.

Laws that limit free speech to keep big corporations out of politics made a mess of government in New Jersey. Casino companies are a positive influence on politics in Nevada. But here in New Jersey, casinos are barred from supporting candidates or speaking out on public issues. And so big unions and lawyer/lobbyists run things here, and only ?public-private partnerships? can succeed.

You can learn more about how ?progressives? on the left limit speech and control how public issues are discussed and addressed in the name of ?fairness.? Meet Trevor Loudon at a special breakfast program of from 9:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 1, at the Shore Diner.

Loudon helped lead a tea party type political movement that changed the politics and revived the economy in New Zealand in 2006 and 2008. Loudon also researched recently released documents in Russia and found how the old Soviet government spent millions to influence journalists, professors, entertainers, and other ?opinion makers? here in the United States for 70 years.

A $10 donation is recommended for this event only to defray Loudon?s travel expenses, together with the purchase of breakfast off the menu.

(Reprinted from August 29, 2012 Current-Gazette Newspapers of Atlantic and Cape May Counties,

Somers Point attorney Seth Grossman appears on 92.1FM 8-9 a.m. Saturday. For information see, email or call (609) 927-7333. Breakfast discussions are held 9:30-10:30 a.m. every Saturday at the Shore Diner on Fire and Tilton roads in Egg Harbor Township.

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  • Seth Grossman

    Seth Grossman is executive director of Liberty And Prosperity, which he co-founded in 2003. It promotes American liberty and limited constitutional government through weekly radio and in-person discussions, its website, email newsletters and various events. Seth Grossman is also a general practice lawyer.

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