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Forum Post: Money, speech, and equal justice under law

Posted 5 years ago on June 26, 2012, 1:41 a.m. EST by brightonsage (4494)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

The first amendment assures that Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech.One can also reasonably conclude from that language that abridgement would have cause an inequality which the framers were committed to avoid.

There is another way that inequality could arise that they did not specifically anticipate. At that time, the human voice could not be amplified. It could not be recorded, It could not be broadcast over the airways, over telephone lines, wire cable or fiber optic cable, because the technology did not exist nor was it forecast. There was a very small degree of inequality possible to be created at that time.

Written "speech" could be recorded on paper but not in electronic signals, or in optical signals. This was the first indicator that printed speech could be unequally available to to be used to persuade voters. However, it was very easy for the audience to avoid any persuasive affect of this media by not reading it. Still, they clearly missed the significance of this first important advance of media.

The phrase, "equal justice under law" is both symbolically and literally cut into stone on the facade of the Supreme Court building of the United States of America. I believe it was a goal of fairness.

I believe you can reasonably abstract that no law regarding freedom of speech was to be passed by Congress which would cause significant inequality in the freedom of speech and still be upheld by the Supreme Court.

Today, one might conclude that Congress is innocent of such an action and that any inequality in the freedom of speech has not resulted from a statute that they passed.You would be correct.

Yet we all know that inequality of freedom of speech can come about in two ways: abridgement, as they identified, and the other way is by extension. Extension of the freedom of speech to new technologies, including recording, replication and communication and the further extension of the effect of these technologies by the application of money. Lots and lots of money.

Ironically, what has occurred is that the law that creates this reverse abridgement (extension) of the effect of money and unequal justice under the law did not come from Congress, it was created by the judicial activism of the Supreme Court itself. which has clearly violated it's own stricture on its facade,"equal justice under law."

How do the laws written by the Supreme Court get overturned? The Constitution was not explicit about this sort of issue because writing laws was supposed to be the exclusive function of Congress. Five jurists running amok, making up laws, requiring the incredible cost and upheaval of passing and ratifying a constitutional amendment to correct it (or some would claim, a revolution) was not anticipated, yet here we are.

"Reverse abridgement" a useful term to describe what has been done by the Supreme (but not superior) Court.

It this a useful way to look at the Citizens United and Montana Decisions?



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[-] 2 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 5 years ago

"The Constitution was not explicit about this" Because it was never intended. Marbury v Madison. The one thing that Newt Gingrich and Thom Hartmann agree on. Overturning laws was never intended. Judicial Revue I think they call it. This is why it matters who is President. SCOTUS!

[-] 2 points by brightonsage (4494) 5 years ago

Obviously there are a variety or reasons why the framers were not explicit or even silent about subjects, not the least of which were the lack of a consensus, in which case the kicked the can down the road. There reason there are ten immediate amendments is that the first kick was pretty much a whiff. Twelve amendments were proposed before states would even get serious about ratification. Two of those failed. How could anyone hold the view that the Constitution is essential a "perfect document" when it was seriously launched without the Bill of Rights? And slavery was successfully punted, to our eternal shame.

Certainly it matters who is president, but blatant lack of courage by Dems to appoint middle orf the roaders while the GOPs appointed extremists. The average sure isn't in the center.

[-] 1 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 5 years ago

Not only that but Congress is filibustering almost every appointment. Keep those radicals in as long as possible.

[-] 2 points by brightonsage (4494) 5 years ago

It isn't Congress exactly but the GOP Senators are .sabotaging appointments and every sane economic policy.

[-] 1 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 5 years ago

It seems glaringly obvious to me. Unless you are determined not to see.

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 5 years ago

There are so many facts out there that a certain fraction will never accept.

I really don't know how they live with themselves. The criteria that they have for sources of "truth" are just mind numbing. They don't believe in facts or the methods of validating them and they don't believe in logic.

Convincing them of anything is a waste of time, because their "source" will tell them something different and you would have to start all over,

Guess we will have to wait for the next evolutionary cycle and see if they have finally been eliminated.

[-] 1 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 5 years ago

It is a cult. Sometimes I feel iconoclastic. Like if they accepted a truth I show them their world would fall apart. ;p

[-] 2 points by brightonsage (4494) 5 years ago

I believe they sense the fragility of their situation and that is why you often get such over the top emotional reactions, when they are faced by incontrovertible evidence, or get called on such a blatant contradiction that they can't ignore it. And for your trouble, they change the channel back to Faux.

[-] 1 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 5 years ago

But they have a herd mentality. They need to think they are in the bully gang. A couple of crushing losses and they will crawl back under the rocks that Rush tipped over to find them crawling out.

These people did not used to vote. They thought it did not matter. Then along came Rush and told them what they wanted to hear.

This is why when people are in the middles of them they need to speak out. There may be more like you are are afraid to speak up. Yup, I have been guilty, too.

[-] 2 points by brightonsage (4494) 5 years ago

Well said. When you know that you can't really convince people, it is hard to remember that they need to be backed off from trying to form a lynch mob. Neutralizing that kind of behavior is a responsibility with no short term satisfaction. The wolves must not be allowed inside the campfire's circle of light.