Welcome to the future Corporate America – an America that is no longer a People’s America but one that belongs to and is controlled by Big Money and big corporations. It really started trading hands once our United States Supreme Court ruled in Citizens United vs. FEC that money was free speech and couldn’t be limited.
The conservative majority of the court declared corporations as people and not only do they have the same rights as all of us but they have the right to use their money to speak louder than the rest of us by influencing our political leaders and by throwing unlimited cash into super pacs to defeat candidates that don’t kowtow to their agenda.
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker managed to beat back a recall with a campaign funded by a whopping two-thirds of out-of-state money mostly from corporate interests and wealthy pocketbooks. I believe that this recall election was a demonstration of what pouring a massive amount of money into an election can do and I believe we’re only seeing the beginning of the influence of unlimited cash in American politics.
The Wisconsin election was a referendum on the influence of big corporations such as the support Walker has had by guys like the Koch brothers of Koch industries who has contributed a huge sum to Walker. It would seem that they have proven their money can change the outcome of an election and they’ve won.
Before the election there was a hope that Wisconsin voters would see past all the campaign cash that was pouring into the state and see what the election was all about which was about recalling a governor who worked to take collective bargaining rights away from public union workers along with their benefits, all the while he’s cutting taxes for wealthy businesses.
There is a sea change happening in this country that is tearing at the very fibers of democracy. I see a concerted effort to strip the influence of average American citizens over our government and give it all to those of extreme wealth. It’s no longer what working, middle-class citizens want from our government but what corporations want. And, just what do those corporations want?
Corporations want to pay less tax and lower payrolls, along with less responsibility for employee benefits, such as health care and retirement. They also want less environmental regulations because keeping the environment clean is not a priority for many corporations, just profits.
We have a Republican presidential nominee who is the poster child for Corporate America. Mitt Romney’s claim to qualify for the White House is his work with a company called Bain Capital. There are claims Romney created a hundred thousand jobs while working at Bain which is in dispute. There is also the former governor of Massachusetts record while governor as far as job creation. The state was in 47th place in job creation during Romney’s term, which speaks quite clearly on Mitt’s record on jobs.
If Mitt Romney becomes president, corporations will be ecstatic that they finally have their man in the White House. I believe his main interest and concern as president will be how he can make that small band of super-rich guys even richer.
How will the new Corporate America change the life of America’s ordinary people? I believe middle-class America will have to get use to a lower standard of living. Average employees will be asked to give up benefits such as health care and retirement pensions. More states will become “Right to Work” states and unions might even disappear off of America’s landscape. It’ll be up to the employer how much they wish to pay or what benefits – if any – that they’ll provide to their employees.
College will be unobtainable to most families and health care will become a nightmare that will put even more families into poverty than ever before, when health crises happen as they surely will.
Indifference will grow among the populace for the downtrodden and those who fall between the cracks along with the end of the social safety nets that have protected us when we were sick or growing old and not able to work.
Meanwhile, corporations will grow more powerful and then bigger corporations will eat the smaller ones until only a handful will survive. Those few corporations will control everything. Maybe some of us will still be spouting words of “America the Free” or maybe the “Land of Opportunity” but there will be few who still have delusions of grandeur for an America gone by.
Or maybe Americans will stand up and take their country back by demanding that our Congress pass a constitutional amendment banning money in politics; not likely since our political leaders are not likely to bite the hand that feeds them.
What is likely is that we’ll continue going down this road until the other half of America wakes up and realizes what’s happening to them and us all, and that is we’re being taken for a ride by a few rich guys who want it all. Welcome to the future Corporate America.