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After listening to President Obama whine about the Supreme Court's ruling on the Citizens United v. FEC case, where the Supremes struck down an unconstituional McCain-Feingold prohibition on campaign ads, I wondered, exactly how big of a hypocrite is Obama ? Apparently, his hypocrisy knows no bounds. Remember, Obama is the one who broke his word on taking public campaign financing so he could raise $600 million to defeat John McCain, who did take public campaign financing. LOTS of that money came from special interests, running the gamut from Wall Street to the unions. Obama also spouted quite a lot of anti-lobbyist rhetoric on the campaign trail in 2008, and then turned around and had several lobbyists on his White House team (another broken Obama campaign promise), including John Podesta, who headed Obama's transition team.
As it turns out, 2009 was a very, very good year for lobbyists, and guess which lobbying firm increased it's revenue the most ? If you said, 'John Podesta's lobbying group,' you win the grand prize. The revenue of the Podesta Group jumped 60 percent in 2009. Some grand coincidence, eh ?
Next, consider Obama's health care bill, which catered to practically every medical special interest in sight - the health insurance companies, the pharmaceutical companies, AARP, AMA, the unions, etc. Then consider the bribes to Senators Mary Landrieu (D-LA) and Ben Nelson (D-NE) to get their health care votes. ObamaCare has been a special interest bonanza, and partly responsible for the lobbying boom in 2009, a boom that happened in the midst of a recession, no less.
Lobbying, in and of itself, is perfectly legal and constitutional, just as is running political ads on television. Those activities are part and parcel of the First Amendment to the Constitution. Here's the text of that Amendment, which I'll repeat here because many liberals seem unaware of it, judging by their recent reactions to events:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Lobbying IS petitioning the government. The massive increases in the number of lobbyists over the past decade (they've doubled in number) isn't really the problem. It's only a symptom of the real problem, which is - the massive expansion in the size, scope, and power of the federal government itself. This has gone on regardless of which party was running things. The lobbyists grew during the Bush administration's huge expansion of government, and the lobbyists are growing during Obama's all-time record expansion of government. Btw, I heard Obama say the other day that he wasn't for big government, he was for smart government. That's another of Obama's titanic lies. He is for BIG GOVERNMENT, period. And that leads inexorably to more lobbyists, more special interest catering, and more corruption, just as it has this year. When the government is trying to remake the entire health care system, is granting subsidies to everyone and everything the government deems wise and appropriate, is disseminating $800 billion in stimulus money to whomever it deems wise and appropriate, is bailing out every industry it deems wise and appropriate, is contemplating how to raise taxes to pay for it all, what else COULD happen, other than every special interest in the country flocking to Washington D.C. to get their share of the taxpayer-funded bounty ??? There is no other possible reality.
The problem certainly is not McCain-Feingold. The problem is every big government advocate everywhere. The answer to the problem is contained in the very U.S. Constitution the left wants to blissfully ignore. The Constitution was designed with the intent of the government being limited. The founding fathers designed it that way on purpose. The founders didn't want the state to be all-powerful. They'd seen enough of that in the monarchies and dictators of their own time. The Constitution is a description of the powers and limitations on the government, and the political power brokers in Washington D.C. are shredding it article by article, page by page. Thus, the solution to all the corruption and favor-buying in Washington D.C. is the same as it's always been - limited government. This is best expressed by the Libertarian/Conservative key phrase - limited government, lower taxes, liberty. It is the ONLY way.
Obama is hardly the solution to the problem. He and those like him ARE THE PROBLEM. The only reason Obama dislikes the Citizens United v. FEC ruling is because he fears much of that corporate advertising won't be in his favor. He fears that money might favor his pro-business opponents, the very ones Obama would like to keep quiet. Obama is perfectly fine with special interests, as long as those special interests are in his corner, as long as he can use them to advance his agenda, and as long as he can use them to consolidate his power.
The bottom line is, if government weren't so all-powerful, if it wasn't handing out favors to everyone in sight, then there wouldn't be so many standing in line jostling for those favors. And if we start cutting government spending, there'd be a nice little side benefit - we could move off the path to bankruptcy that we're on now. We might start righting our financial ship.
But I'm sure our President would consider all this crazy talk. It makes too much sense, and in addition, it doesn't leave the President free to redistribute everyone's wealth (aka, thievery).