The issue of money in politics is one that has gained a lot of traction in the last several years. It’s one of the few issues whereupon most left-wingers and right-wingers agree.
The position essentially states that we must pass a myriad of laws and/or constitutional amendments to prevent rich people and big corporations from influencing elections and lawmaking. This includes, among many other things, repealing Citizen’s United, a famous 2010 supreme court case in which the court ruled that in terms of donating money to politicians, corporations are equivalent to people, allowing the floodgates to open for corporations to influence politicians.
“Getting money out of politics,” at least theoretically, will ensure that politicians are more likely to serve the will of the people and not the will of corporatists.
Like most political issues, the intent behind this position is a good one. It’s anti-corporatist, which is great.
The problem is that this position is held by people who are fundamentally for big government, even if they don’t think they are. I shall explain.
If you don’t want the government to do bad things, you have two options.
Option one is to give the government massive power, then pass a bunch of laws, amendments, and regulations to try to keep that same government from abusing said power.
Option two is to never give the government massive power in the first place. Then you don’t need to pass any of this stuff.
Left-wingers and right-wingers usually are for option one. They each believe (in their own way) that government should be given extreme and wide-reaching power over your personal life, the economy, the world, and many other aspects. When they do this, they’re always shocked, shocked! to find that many politicians in charge of this huge government do very bad things.
Left-wingers and right-wingers then say, “Well, we will want massive government in control of certain things, but we want that massive government to only do what we want.” The term “good government” is the favorite phrase of these people. “I don’t want big government, I want good government!”
Then they go into band-aid mode, and start passing even more laws, regulations, and other bullshit, most of which actually makes your life even more difficult and all of which actually costs more taxpayer dollars to police the politicians and their donors to make sure they don’t do bad things.
They pass all kinds of laws and regulations, spend bazillions of dollars, and big surprise, politicians keep doing bad things with the massive power the left and the right have given them. These “get money out of politics” restrictions always seem to plug up one hole only to create another.
The small government answer is very different, much simpler, much less expensive, and far more effective (though nothing government is 100% effective; as always, we’re talking about least bad here). It’s simply to never give government this massive power in the first place. Now the politicians can’t do bad things (or not nearly as bad things) because they don’t have the power to do them in the first place.
As has been said before, it’s not abuse of power that’s the problem; it’s the power to abuse. If you never give an entity power over your life, that entity can’t use that power against you. That’s what my relationship advice to men is all about; be with women all you want; just never give them the power to destroy your life. Problem solved, very simple.
With government, it works the same way. Have a government if you want, but don’t give it very much power. Now you don’t need to worry about “money in politics” because “politics” won’t have the power to abuse you or rip you off (or it will, but not nearly as much and/or not nearly as much people).
This is why, strangely, anyone who strongly holds a “get money out of politics” position actually supports big government. If you truly wanted small government like I do, you support a government that doesn’t have the kind of power over you to abuse in the first place.
I want money out of politics too. I just want it out of politics before the problem occurs, not after the problem occurs.