Billionaire Activists

The much-vaunted separation of the 1 percent, or 1 percent of the 1 percent, from the rest of society doesn’t mean simply that some people have many more homes and cars and planes than the rest of us; nor does it mean they can simply finance an insurgent candidate who might not otherwise be viable (as was the case with some antiwar Democrats in the late ’60s). It means they possess a truly enormous power to shape perceptions in our society, to bend democracy more than was possible before. What can we call such a system? Clearly Robert Dahl’s “polyarchy” concept needs serious revision. Who might undertake it?

Scott McConnell
Who Governs?”
The American Conservative
January 21, 2015

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The real problem with the Tea Party is that they have made “conservative” a four-letter word. And the irony is that they are not even conservatives: they are full-bore reactionaries.

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“In this final relationship, the Congress and [my] Administration have, on most vital issues, cooperated well, to serve the national good rather than mere partisanship, and so have assured that the business of the Nation should go forward.”

Dwight D. Eisenhower
Farewell Address to the Nation
1961

On Corporations

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“Our aim is not to do away with corporations; on the contrary, these big aggregations are an inevitable development of modern industrialism, and the effort to destroy them would be futile unless accomplished in ways that would work the utmost mischief to the entire body politic. We can do nothing of good in the way of regulating and supervising these corporations until we fix clearly in our minds that we are not attacking the corporations, but endeavoring to do away with any evil in them. We are not hostile to them; we are merely determined that they shall be so handled as to subserve the public good. We draw the line against misconduct, not against wealth.”

Theodore Roosevelt

I will take this one half-step further, because I am sure TR would agree: implicit in this statement is the contention that our aim is not to coddle or provide aid to corporations any more than it is to attack them for simply being corporations.