How Much Does a Politician Cost? A Groundbreaking Study Reveals the Influence of Money in Politics. Researchers or Corporate Allies? Think Tanks Blur the Line. Explainer: How Corruption Is Strangling U.S. Innovation - James Allworth. The Best Congress the Banks’ Money Can Buy. Here we go again.
Corruption Is Responsible for 80% of Your Cell Phone Bill. April 11, 2012 | Like this article?
Join our email list: Stay up to date with the latest headlines via email. Investment and lobbying: Money and politics. The Amazing ROI of Corporate Lobbying. Fixed Fortunes: Biggest corporate political interests spend billions, get trillions. Between 2007 and 2012, 200 of America’s most politically active corporations spent a combined $5.8 billion on federal lobbying and campaign contributions.
A year-long analysis by the Sunlight Foundation suggests, however, that what they gave pales compared to what those same corporations got: $4.4 trillion in federal business and support. That figure, more than the $4.3 trillion the federal government paid the nation’s 50 million Social Security recipients over the same period, is the result of an unprecedented effort to quantify the less-examined side of the campaign finance equation: Do political donors get something in return for what they give?
Four years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court suggested the answer to that question was no. Corporate spending to influence federal elections would not “give rise to corruption or the appearance of corruption,” the majority wrote in the landmark Citizens United v. Political change, permanent interests Government as business partner. Members of Congress trade in companies while making laws that affect those same firms. Almost one in every eight trades — 5,531 — intersected with legislation.
The 130 lawmakers traded stocks or bonds in companies as bills passed through their committees or while Congress was still considering the legislation. The party affiliation of the lawmakers was almost evenly split between Democrats and Republicans, 68 to 62. Sen. Almost 400 former House staffers registered to lobby in last two years. Jack Abramoff: The lobbyist's playbook.
Lawrence Lessig interviews Jack Abramoff. Lawyer Who Argued For Citizens United Admits Elections Are Bought. Ari Berman: The .0000063% Election. How the Politics of the Super Rich Became American Politics.
Tax-Exempt Groups Shield Political Gifts of Businesses. The giant insurer Aetna directed more than $3 million last year to the American Action Network, a Republican-leaning nonprofit organization that has spent millions of dollars attacking lawmakers who voted for President Obama’s health care bill — even as Aetna’s president publicly voiced support for the legislation.
Other corporations, including Prudential Financial, Dow Chemical and the drugmaker Merck, have poured millions of dollars more into the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, a tax-exempt trade group that has pledged to spend at least $50 million on political advertising this election cycle. Dark Money: The Rise of Outside Spending in 2012. About a week before election day, a young girl, maybe 10 years old, confronted Colorado House candidate Sal Pace in a pew at his Pueblo church.
“She said, ‘Is it true that you want to cut my grandmother’s Medicare?’” Pace remembers. Like many other Democrats around the country, Pace has spent months trying to rebut the charge that President Obama’s health care reforms hurt Grandma by cutting Medicare by $716 billion. Koch Brothers, Allies Pledge $100 Million At Private Meeting To Beat Obama. David Koch, executive vice president of Koch Industries, attends a meeting of the Economic Club of New York, Monday, April 11, 2011.
(AP) WASHINGTON -- At a private three-day retreat in California last weekend, conservative billionaires Charles and David Koch and about 250 to 300 other individuals pledged approximately $100 million to defeat President Obama in the 2012 elections. Finally! Two Everyday People Figured Out How to Pick a Fight With Billionaires, And Win. The Jaw-Dropping Investigation That Tells You Everything You Need To Know About DC. From Social Welfare Groups, A River Of Political Influence. There's No Way to Follow the Money - Lee Aitken. A patchwork of vague and lax campaign-finance regulations mean hundreds of millions of dollars changed hands in 2012 with no one tracking them.
Christmas comes early for campaign watchdogs—or late, depending on your perspective. Thanks to a lag in IRS reporting rules, the tax returns of independent groups that spent hundreds of millions of dollars in the 2012 election are just now coming due. Considered together with a recent campaign-finance investigation in California, these filings hint at an orgy of self-dealing and “dark money” shenanigans unprecedented in American politics. The first presidential election since the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision spawned what Bloomberg Businessweek called “a Cayman Islands-style web of nonprofit front groups and shell companies.” Political Corruption and Capitalism. (Image: Failed justice via Shutterstock)Corruption is endemic to the capitalist system and has not been successfully regulated away.
Perhaps a system change is warranted? Nearly daily, mass media report political corruption across the world. Government bureaucrats, from local to national to international, are exposed for having abused their offices for personal gain. That gain is usually financial, but can involve career advancement.