Archive for the ‘Free Speech’ Category

Weep For The Wealthy (Limerick)

Monday, April 7th, 2014

Weep For The Wealthy (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Though the wealthy will publicly cheer
As campaign regs get knocked on their rear,
Some privately groan:
“No limits?” they moan.
“Buying pols is becoming too dear!”

Note from Mad Kane: Although I concocted that quote, it may be closer to the truth than you think. Here’s The Weekly Standard’s Bill Kristol, who argued on ABC’s This Week “that not every wealthy donor will embrace the outcome of the McCutcheon case, because they may now be obliged to give more:”

“All the donors I know hate this decision, of course,” he said. “This used to be a very good excuse to say to a candidate, ooh, I’m maxing out, I just can’t help your campaign.”

Free Speech Gets Pricey (Limerick)

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

Free Speech Gets Pricey (Limerick)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Remember “one person, one vote?”
Now “one dollar, one vote’s” what they wrote;
Yes, the U.S. Supremes
Favor money — in reams,
As the rich grab free speech by the throat.

Thanks to the New Yorker’s John Cassidy, for inspiring this limerick with his acerbic comment about McCutcheon v. FEC:

But Wednesday’s decision, once again a five-to-four ruling, represented another significant step away from the antiquated principle of “one person, one vote” toward the more modern, and utilitarian, notion of “one dollar, one vote.”

Supreme Priorities (Limerick)

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

If you thought the Citizens United ruling undermined democracy, brace yourself: The Roberts court has made things even worse with yet another controversial 5-4 decision in McCutcheon v. FEC. Assaulting campaign finance reform once again, the Supreme Court struck down the aggregate limits on how much an individual can contribute to candidates, parties and political action committees.

As Ari Berman astutely observes:

The Court’s conservative majority believes that the First Amendment gives wealthy donors and powerful corporations the carte blanche right to buy an election but that the Fifteenth Amendment does not give Americans the right to vote free of racial discrimination.

Supreme Priorities
By Madeleine Begun Kane

The Supremes freed the wealthy to buy
Politicians — an endless supply.
Seems “free speech” means “free spending,”
While “voting rights rending”
Isn’t something they care to decry.

Ode To Odious Corporate Personhood

Monday, January 25th, 2010

There’s nothing funny about the U.S. Supreme Court’s activist ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. Overruling long-held precedents, it gives corporations free rein to buy political influence, all in the name of “corporate personhood” and “free speech.”

Nor is there anything funny about the hypocrisy of self-described anti-judicial-activism Republicans who laud this calamitous decision.

And, alas, there’s nothing funny about this limerick:

Democracy’s Demise?
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Justice Roberts and co are unbound,
Driving precedents precious aground.
Yet Republicans cheer,
And the sobs that we hear
Are the sounds of democracy drowned.

     

********

Lance Mannion managed to extract some humor from this judicial travesty.

Ode To Colorado: Nanny State

Saturday, March 22nd, 2008

Jeralyn over at Talk Left has declared Colorado to be a “Nanny State.”  Why? Because its Appeals Court has decreed that Colorado no-smoking laws apply to actors on stage.

(Coincidentally, just last night my husband and I saw an Off-Broadway play during which two of the actors smoked.  In fact, we got a second-row contact-high from one of them.)

But getting back to the Colorado judiciary, the court deserves a limerick, don’t you think?

Ode To Colorado: Nanny State
By Madeleine Begun Kane

“No smoking on stage!” says the judge,
Cuz “No smoking indoors!” He won’t budge.
So no matter the role,
There’s a no-smoke patrol.
Soon they won’t let their actors eat fudge.

You can find more of my smoking-related humor here and my theater-related humor here.)[tags]Legal Satire, Judge Humor, No-Smoking Humor, Smoking Laws, Theater Humor, Actors Verse[/tags]

Unfair Censorship Of Plame’s Fair Game

Thursday, October 25th, 2007

The defendants in Valerie Plame Wilson’s lawsuit against the CIA for censoring her book, Fair Game, had better hope she never gets to trial.  I say that because I’ve heard her interviewed several times, and that woman will make one hell of a witness.

Moreover, asserting national security, in order to censor material that’s already in the public domain, sure sounds like revenge censorship to me.

And that brings me to my latest haiku:

Plame’s book censored by
Bush blackguards, who black out truths
Already revealed.

(You can find my Traitorgate song parody about Valerie Plame’s outing here.) [tags]Valerie Plame Wilson, Outing CIA Agent, Fair Game, Plame Censorship, Plame Lawsuit[/tags]

The GOP’s In For A Rudy Awakening

Thursday, June 21st, 2007

As a long-time New York City resident, I’m amused by Rudy Giuliani’s candidacy.  And I find it ironic that Rudy doesn’t dare brag about the one thing that might appeal to people  put off by his pro-choice, pro-gay rights positions — Giuliani’s aggressive stance against free speech.

But understanding irony has never been Rudy’s strong suit.  For instance, he’s unlikely to appreciate the irony underlying his running as the security-candidate, after Newsday outed him as a greedy windbag who was forced to drop-out of the bipartisan Iraq Study Group because he was too busy giving lucrative speeches to attend ISG meetings:

The GOP’s In For A Rudy Awakening
By Madeleine Begun Kane

He’ll protect us–that’s Rudy’s motif.
But his claim must defy all belief:
Cause when push comes to shove,
Major wealth’s his first love.
He’s the ISG Drop-Out-In-Chief. [tags]Rudy Giuliani, Security President, ISG, Iraq Study Group, Newsday, New York City, Pro-Choice, Pro-Gay Rights, Free Speech, Security Candidate, Greedy Windbag, Lucrative Speeches[/tags]

Bush’s Language Police Foiled By Bush/Cheney Expletives

Thursday, June 7th, 2007

Remember the time Dick Cheney told to Senator Leahy what he could do to himself on the Senate floor? Remember the time George Bush was overheard wishing that someone could get the Hezbollah “to stop doing this [expletive deleted]?”  Well, a federal appeals panel remembers and cites these incidents as a basis for shutting down the F.C.C.’s anti-fleeting expletive crusade.

It’s deliciously ironic, don’t you think? And it’s haiku inspiring too:

Fleeting expletives
Uttered by Bush and Cheney
Stymie censorship. [tags]FCC, Bush expletive, Cheney expletive, FCC Censorship[/tags]

Dems Pull Bush’s Chain

Sunday, March 25th, 2007

Dems Pull Bush’s Chain
By Madeleine Begun Kane

The Congressional Dems reached a deal.
No, it isn’t ideal, yet I feel
It’s all right—a first step.
Stop this war? Dems said, “Yep!”
As for reining in Bush, they said, “Heel!”  [tags]Congress Humor, Iraq War, Spending Bill, House Bill, Rein In Bush, U.S. Troops Readiness, Veterans’ Health and Iraq Accountability Act, Strategic Redeployment, U.S. Troops[/tags]

Why I Don’t Hate My Hate Mail

Tuesday, February 27th, 2007

Why I Don’t Hate My Hate Mail
By Madeleine Begun Kane

There are folks quite averse to my verse.
In their emails, perverse, how they curse!
But I never will fret
Over hate mail I get:
This is freedom, for better or worse. [tags]Hate Mail, Political Verse, Angry Email, Political Anger, Freedom Humor, Free Speech, Free Expression[/tags]