Friday, October 28, 2016

If Citizens United is Overturned, Michael Moore’s Film Would be Banned. But Does the Left Care?

Paul Mulshine has a nice column in the New jersey Star-Ledger titled Reverse Citizens United and jail Michael Moore? - Liberals are confused on campaign funding. Moore, Mulshine reports, released a film titled "Michael Moore in Trumpland.” As you probably guessed, Moore’s film is critical of Donald Trump. Mulshine explains that, if not for Citizens United, the Supreme Court case that the Left is trying to overturn, Moore would be breaking the law. Mulshine references a CATO Institute essay, "'Michael Moore in Trumpland' Might Have Been Illegal Before Citizens United."  

I left these comments:

Citizens United is one of the best and strongest pro-freedom of speech, pro-First Amendment decisions ever handed down by the Supreme Court. Yet the Democrats want it overturned. Why? Because political power-lusters will always move to silence the citizenry to protect their power from public criticism, scrutiny, and accountability sooner or later. For the Democrats, “later” is now, and Citizens United is one of the means.

The Left will spin their opposition to Citizens United as preventing “the rich” from “corrupting our democracy” or “buying the election.” But this is dangerous nonsense. When “the rich”—people with the means to reach a mass audience—express their opinions, whether in film or campaign ads or donations to candidates, they speak not just for themselves but for the millions who agree with the message. Silence “the rich,” and you not only violate their inalienable right to freedom of expression but you silence millions of ordinary citizens who agree with the message, and deprive millions more of the chance to hear of and debate those issues. The same goes whether “the rich” is Michael Moore or Charles Koch.

The Democrats and the Left are anti-free speech. Some on what today passes for the Right or conservatism agree. Citizens United overruled the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 – popularly known as McCain-Feingold and signed into law by G.W. Bush. But today, the Dems and the Left are leading the charge against free speech. This includes not only Citizens United but such tactics as the precedent-setting prosecutorial harassment of dissenters against the Left’s climate catastrophism dogma. They want to silence dissent and keep voters as much in the dark as possible, so they can control the political narrative. This should be considered by every voter before they enter the voting booth.


I don’t think the Left really cares that overturning Citizens United would apply to fellow Leftists. They want to empower politicians by restricting private citizens’ rights. That empowerment would do far more for statism than Michael Moore’s films ever could.

I had an interesting engagement with other correspondents in the comments section. Next, I’ll post it.

[NOTE: My comment was featured in the Sunday Star-Ledger Perspective section.]

Related Reading:

Hillary's Pledge to Overturn the First Amendment—and Why it Should Be Defeated

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