Last year Harvard University Law Professor Lawrence Lessig wrote the eBook “Lesterland: The Corruption of Congress and How to End It,” which detailed how big money corrupts both parties in Congress, and how lobbyists even market gridlock as a political strategy. In light of the Supreme Court ruling in the McCutcheon case, he has sent out email for Rootstrikers, which defines itself as “new generation of activists taking a stand against the corrupting influence of money in politics,” and it’s worth running it in full:
The Supreme Court has decided the McCutcheon case. If you haven’t heard yet, it’s a disaster.
Few were surprised with the result. The Court has held that aggregate limits on contributions — the total amount you can give to all candidates, not the amount you can give to any one candidate — are unconstitutional. The inevitable result of this decision will be to reduce the number of relevant funders of campaigns. We’re on our way from Lesterland to Sheldon City — from a democracy where about 150,000 Americans are the relevant funders of campaigns (the same as are named “Lester”) to a world where about 40,000 Americans are the relevant funders of campaigns (the same as are named “Sheldon”).
He refers readers to his must-read piece in The Daily Beast on the ruling. Then he says:
But as I’ve long insisted, the real problem in American democracy is not the Court. Or at least, not only the Court. The real corruption is the way we fund elections. This decision makes our fight against that corruption even more urgent.
Now is the time to add your name and support the Government by the People Act.
This Act is an opportunity to take our elections back from the handful of funders whose grip on our democracy tightens by the day. And only by adding your name to the call for reform will we be able to compete with the Lesters or Sheldons of this country.
They say the darkest hour is just before the dawn. If so, then the dawn is not that far away.
Act now to fight back and voice your support for the Government by the People Act.
-Lessig and the entire Rootstrikers/Demand Progress Team
GO HERE to read an excerpt from Lesterland run here on TMV as a Guest Voice a year ago.
The eBook of Lesterland. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED:
The new print edition of Lesterland (updated). HIGHLY RECOMMENDED:
Joe Gandelman is a former fulltime journalist who freelanced in India, Spain, Bangladesh and Cypress writing for publications such as the Christian Science Monitor and Newsweek. He also did radio reports from Madrid for NPR’s All Things Considered. He has worked on two U.S. newspapers and quit the news biz in 1990 to go into entertainment. He also has written for The Week and several online publications, did a column for Cagle Cartoons Syndicate and has appeared on CNN.