Posts Tagged ‘First Amendment’

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.

Limerick Ode To Newt’s Latest Temper Tantrum

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

Newt Gingrich seemed way off his game at last night’s Florida debate. And at first, I attributed this to Mitt Romney’s new, improved debating style.

But Newt apparently needs the adrenalin rush that comes with cheers and applause. And last night’s NBC debate rules precluded such a rush: Audience feedback was limited, in the interest of using the time for actual debating.

So now Newt (always on the outlook for another excuse to bash the media) is petulantly threatening to boycott any debate that limits the audience’s free speech:

Mr. Gingrich’s performance in the debate in Tampa on Monday night was far more muted. Critics noted that he seemed to be off his game. The National Journal, which co-hosted the NBC debate, compared Gingrich to “a stand-up comedian whose routine suffers without echoes of laughter egging him on.”

Mr. Gingrich clearly noticed something was off, too. “We’re going to serve notice on future debates,” he told Fox. “We’re just not going to allow that to happen. That’s wrong. The media doesn’t control free speech. People ought to be allowed to applaud if they want to.”

Hmmm…., I wonder how Newt feels about boos.

Limerick Ode To Newt’s Latest Temper Tantrum
By Madeleine Begun Kane

No cheering at last night’s debate!
This has Gingrich quite peeved and irate.
He says cheers from the crowd
Simply must be allowed.
Without cheers, will Newt Gingrich deflate?

Yet Another Limerick Ode To Christine O’Donnell

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

By now you’ve surely heard about Delaware Republican Senatorial candidate Christine O’Donnell’s astonishing screw-up in her debate against opponent Chris Coons. I’m speaking, of course, of her First Amendment gaffe. In her now infamous exchange (in a law school, yet) Tea-Partier O’Donnell “appeared to be aggressively ignorant of the fact that the First Amendment requires the separation of church and state.”

That brings me to my latest Limerick:

Yet Another Limerick Ode To Christine O’Donnell
By Madeleine Begun Kane

Debating our Fed Constitution
Can be tough when your grasp’s Lilliputian:
Hence O’Donnell’s conflation
Of church and our nation.
Her savvy could use evolution.

(Here’s my previous limerick about Christine O’Donnell.)

Mosque Mockery

Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

I’m never surprised when Republicans try to trash the U.S. Constitution. But Senator Harry Reid’s position about the proposed Cordoba House — the inaccurately nicknamed “Ground Zero Mosque” — disappointed me.

But then what do I know? I’m just a 1st amendment fan who lives in New York City. And I’d rather see a mosque than a burned out former Burlington Coat Factory store.

That brings me to my latest limerick:

Mosque Mockery
By Madeleine Begun Kane

A “Ground Zero Mosque” — oh how shocking!
Hurray for the folks who are blocking
That mosque to replace
The old coat-selling place.
If perchance you can’t tell — yes, I’m mocking.

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.