Da Carolina Journal is all over lobbying reform this week . . . opining about the differences between persuasion and influence-peddling . . . insisting that corporations have the same rights as citizens here in free-speech land.
Note to Hood: Corporations have NO rights except for those that we the people give them. You might want to check out your Cato Constitution just to be sure.
Out of frustration, I'm open to lobbying reform, as Johnnie seems to be. But I'm not very optimistic that the foxes are the best ones to write new rules for how to guard the hen house. Especially when one of the fox cheerleaders writes crap like this:
When lobbying-as-persuasion turns into lobbying-as-influence-peddling, it reflects nothing more or less than human beings giving in to temptation, as we are all wont to do on occasion. It is not only in the public interest but also in the interest of politicians and lobbyists themselves for there to be clear, understandable rules that reduce the temptation to sell government favors for status or cash.
I don't know of ANY politician that doesn't make decisions based on concern for status. In a representative form of government, most elected officials do what they think the people want . . . with getting re-elected at the fronts and backs of their brains at all times. Why else would Senator Stevens be such a nutcase about acquiring millions for his Alaska bridge to nowhere? It may not be selling government favors in the strictest sense, but it's pretty damn close. Selling them for votes.
Frankly, I doubt another round of "clear understandable rules" will make a difference that matters. Not when AWOL George Bush is liar-in-chief in a Republican culture of corruption.