Days before the third anniversary of the Citizens United v. SEC Supreme Court case ruling, Occupy Wall Street organized an extravagant piece of political street theater: a wedding in which seven brides were to marry seven corporations in a ceremony across the street from the New York Stock Exchange. The Honorable Reverend Billy from The Church of Stop Shopping presided over the ceremony. One of the brides, Monica Hunken, in a wedding dress bedazzled with real dollar bills, interrupted the ceremony just as her betrothed was about to take her hand in marriage.
Why protest against the Citizens United Supreme Court Decision?
Monday, January 21, 2013 was the third anniversary of the Supreme Court’s favorable ruling for Citizens United against the Federal Election Commission that has opened the floodgates for a truly pornographic amount of money into our political process. Don’t get me wrong; I am not suggesting that we wax poetic about the glory days before 2009 when the U.S. political process was paramour of virtue. The Citizens United ruling has become a symbol for what the Supreme Court has been doing for about 100 years, slowly empowering corporations until they have now been granted personhood status and putting how money is spent in elections on par with free speech.
How did this happen?
One does not think of corporate shills as activists, but that is label that one of the most powerful corporate shills in the world, Justice John Roberts, has earned in his short time heading the Supreme Court: An activist judge.
What other word is there to describe the brazen behavior of the Roberts’ Supreme Court that looked at the vast wasteland of cases seeking to be heard in the Fall of 2009 and picked a little case brought by a corporate front group – Citizens United- and then rewrote the complaint to reframe the question completely? Then convened court a month earlier than was the usual, giving lawyers who had to prepare oral arguments, only a month to deal with the new, large, and obscene question of whether corporations had constitutionally protected electioneering rights- like people? As a result of the Supreme Court’s Citizen United decree, unlimited and unreported sums of corporate money are now allowed in all US elections.
Bottom line: The elite ruling class and corporate political interests have rendered the individual citizen nearly obsolete in the electoral process.
Now that corporate power has been constitutionalized via this Supreme Court precedent, how long will it be before all elected officials are 21st Century versions of the Manchurian Candidate or Stepford Wives mindlessly regurgitating talking points programmed by the ultra rich?