Some of you may know about a terrible verdict by the US Supreme Court called “Citizens United.”
This decision basically said that corporations could donate unlimited amounts of money to candidates in political campaigns. See the idea is that a corporation is a person like you or me. And money is exactly the same as speech which is free. (Except when you do it, like the Occupy protests. It’s not free speech when you do it. Then it’s annoying.)
So anyway people not YOU have free speech. And those people are corporations. They have lots and lots of money, and after making a profit for their shareholders, instead of paying a living wage to their employees, they decide to give that money to politicians.
Well certainly they would rather buy a second yacht or an island in the Caribbean. They would rather keep the money. But they want something. They want favorable laws that keep them from having to pay taxes. They want to make sure they get richer while you get more poor.
So they donate this money to politicians who will take it.
In this election that is Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.
Bernie Sanders has refused any donations from anyone except private citizens and unions of workers.
But, are campaign contributions the only way to bribe someone? No! Of course not. They are just the most popular. You can certainly also bribe people other ways.
For example, speaking fees.
Everyone asked Hillary Clinton to release the transcripts from her speeches to the big banks. But she can’t. Why not? Because she never actually spoke to them. She just went and had dinner with them and then cashed a check. It’s another way to bribe a candidate to do as you wish.
I would point out that Bernie Sanders hasn’t taken any speaking fees from anyone in his entire political career.
There are other ways to bribe politicians. These are just a few. But I think you should keep in mind that two of the three people running are bought and sold. They are owned already by the corporations, and they don’t care what you want.
Good to remember.