Our election system is sliding faster and faster toward being a fake form of democracy.
Here’s an anti-Obama ad created by the American Issues Project, which appears to be some sort of conservative organization. It points out some possibly troubling connections between presidential candidate Barack Obama and William Ayers, a member of a radical group called the Weathermen, which committed terrorist acts in the 1970’s.
I have no idea if the ad is accurate, because it’s not really the point of this post. This is:
Obama general counsel Bob Bauer today sent a second, sharper letter to the Justice Department, directly attacking the Dallas billionaire funding a harsh attack ad, Harold Simmons.
“We reiterate our request that the Department of Justice fulfill its commitment to take prompt action to investigate and to prosecute the American issues Project, and we further request that the Department of Justice investigate and prosecute Howard (sic) Simmons for a knowing and willful violation of the individual aggregate contribution limits,” he wrote.
Wonderful. Now we have a politicians trying to prosecute each other’s supporters for illegal advertising. This is a predictable consequence of our insane campaign financing laws, which try to characterize all speech about candidates as being equivalent to providing financial support. This is a direct attack on free speech where it matters most: Politics.
Although, it’s not as if McCain doesn’t have it coming.
I remember some years ago when feminists in Canada pushed through anti-pornography legislation in the name of protecting women. Once the law became effective, the very first victim of the law was a lesbian bookstore.
Similarly, Senator McCain has been a leader in the push for these stupid campaign finance laws—the flagship law is the McCain-Feingold Act—so it’s only fitting that his supporters feel their sting.
Bizarrely, some right wing folks aren’t thinking too clearly about the source of the threat:
If Obama is elected President, will he appoint an Attorney General who will carry out politically-motivated prosecutions like the one he is now demanding? I suppose we can’t know for sure, but why wouldn’t he? If he demands criminal prosecution of free speech that opposes his political interests when he’s a candidate, why wouldn’t he order it as President?
Are we supposed to believe that McCain, the guy who invented these un-American laws, wouldn’t try to enforce them?