Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Free Speech

From opinionjournal, an excellent article on the attempts to limit political speech under the guise of reform against campain corruption. It is worth the read, but very thorough (meaning long) so I'll include some highlights.

  • The irony of campaign-finance reform is that the "corruption" it targets seems not to exist in any widespread sense. Studies galore have found little or no significant influence of campaign contributions on legislators' votes. Ideological commitments, party positions and constituents' wishes are what motivate the typical politician's actions in office...
  • Scrutinize the pronouncements of campaign-finance reform groups like the Pew-backed Democracy 21, and you'll see how the meaning of "corruption" morphs into "inequality of influence" in this sense. This notion of corruption--[is] really a Marxoid opposition to inequality of wealth...
  • Without the blogosphere, Howell Raines would still be the New York Times' editor, Dan Rather would only now be retiring, garlanded with praise--and John Kerry might be president of the U.S., assuming that CBS News had gotten away with its falsehood about President Bush's military service that the diligent bloggers at PowerLine, LittleGreenFootballs and other sites swiftly debunked...
  • All this massively begs the question: Why should any American need government permission to express himself? Instead of a media exemption, blogger Glenn Reynolds sarcastically commented at a recent conference, maybe we need a "free speech exception, in which you are allowed to say what you want about political candidates without fear of prosecution by the government."
  • Howard Dean, now chairman of the Democratic National Committee, in a 2003 interview railing against Rupert Murdoch: "I believe we need to reregulate the media . . . so we can be sure that the American people get moderate, conservative and liberal points of view."
The constitutionally 'protected' right to free speech has been trivialized lately with court decisions like "nude dancing, animated online kiddie porn, flag burning, tobacco advertising and cross burning." Conservatives have grudgingly accepted these offensive 'demonstrations of speech' as falling under the umbrella created by the first ammendment. Now the more important speech, the type that allows us to freely criticize and influence our government, is being threatened.
Matt 23:23


Post a Comment

<< Home