Citizens United.

John Paul Stevens, U.S. Supreme Court justice.
John Paul Stevens, U.S. Supreme Court justice. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

June 2, 2013 by Jerry Alatalo

Regarding those men and women who have to follow the rules of the mainstream media. We forgive them. Wish them all god-speed and forgive them because you understand now the constraints they are dealing with. The majority of these men and women have families, mortgages, credit cards, utilities and the same stuff that the rest of us deal with.For that matter, forgive everyone for everything, realizing that the spark of the Creator is in all of us without exception. This spiritual power is not only in us, the two-legged. It is in the four-legged, the winged, the crawling things, the green things, the air, the water, those that live in the water, Mother Earth and all of creation.

In your prayers please include all these as this will help more than you know. The prayers we make, no matter the form they take, when expressed honestly, are heard in the spiritual place which is our home. Our eternal home. Never for an instant fail to believe that your prayers and honest thoughts regarding the improvement of all life on Earth are heard. Believe that these improvements are already on their way and that we will all soon be experiencing love, joy and peace in here-to-fore unseen ways that are unprecedented in human history.

What could the ideal media forms look like? What evidence would show that the human race is growing in the area of mass communication? We left a phone message with an unnamed United States Senator a while back suggesting a worldwide satellite broadcast giving the leader of every nation on Earth 15-30 minutes to express to the people on the planet their thoughts on realistic solutions for the most pressing problems we face. This project’s programming would be aired on prime-time television around the globe.

The leaders could videotape their segment and it would be a simple project requiring nothing special with regard to production. The feeling behind the event would be one where the participants would be aware of the reason for it being healing the Earth. Say, that wouldn’t be a bad title for the broadcasts; The Healing of the Earth. This was simply an idea that came across that seemed to make common sense. After leaving the message years ago we have seen nothing, anywhere, regarding this possibility.

We could imagine the response of those with the power to actualize this idea would go something like this: “Well, it sounds like a good idea, but we’re afraid no-one would be interested. Nobody would watch.” To that sentiment we would say: “Are you for real?” There is an old saying “There is such a thing as a free press, if you own one.” In our view an event like this would be ground-breaking, record-shattering journalism that would be watched by more people than watch the Oscars and the Super Bowl combined.

This type of broadcast, if actualized, would transform life on this planet.

It was simply an idea which came up randomly as our thoughts often do. We would be willing to bet that you readers have all had these types of random thoughts come to you. The random thoughts that, when you become aware of them, make you ask yourself: “Maybe this is an idea that could work. I should bring this up with someone who can make it happen.”

Perhaps you take action. Perhaps you don’t. Perhaps, seeing the airwaves are owned by the people, the people should have a much larger say in how those airwaves are utilized.

Imagine all of the positive programming that could be made available to the people of the Earth.

Imagine all of the problems that could be solved, what a much better world we would be leaving to our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Let us pray to the Great Spirit that this dream of utilizing these excellent communication tools for the literal improvement of the human condition becomes a reality.

Imagine a world where the idea of seven generations is understood by all. This is the philosophy of the Native Americans where every action one takes is taken with the concern in mind of how that action will affect those living seven generations from now. Would this not result in an actual heaven on Earth? The possibilities are endless and the time is right for new thinking.

Another area where media reform would be useful is in the area of political campaigning. The problems associated with fundraising for political runs for office seem to be in need of some type of resolution. How can we go along with the current state of affairs where those candidates who raise the most money have the advantage over their opponents who raise less?

The recent Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission allowing unlimited spending on political campaigns by corporations and unions, our common sense would tell us, was simply a wrong decision. Since then superpacs have spent twice as much money on television advertising than the candidates’ campaigns.

Candidates are prohibited from having any contact with superpacs, but come on.

Anytime there are large amounts of money involved you can bet there will be corruption. Power and money are such huge drivers of those involved in politics that Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission will be overturned through constitutional amendment. The fox guarding the henhouse would be the correct comparison here for obvious reasons. Montana had a campaign finance case with connection to Citizens United and has led to two U.S. Supreme Court justices suggesting reconsideration. Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen G. Breyer have come out with doubts about the decision and the course of events since the ruling.

We have seen the unlimited spending begin and will only go to the stratosphere if the decision is not overturned and soon. Given that a number of states have taken steps to have the decision overturned would allow us to predict that the decision will in fact be turned. Any arguments for or against the decision will, when compared, come down decidedly for overturn.

The sentiments of the American people will lead to the overturn simply because it lacks fairness.

One has to feel for the media corporations as their revenues from political advertising would have been guaranteed at a high level were it not for the overturn of the decision. But then one should rejoice because we will not be subjected to an endless barrage of commercials where candidates and superpacs attack their opponents with the latest untruths.

One thing we can say with regard to the Citizens United case is that it has turned out to be such a huge decision that the average citizen has gained an awareness of the problems associated with campaign spending. The increased awareness of the people will be the spark that starts the fire which will result in far reaching, comprehensive campaign finance reform.

The final product will totally ban money from the political process. No candidate for any office in the United States of America will have, as a condition for running, raising money at the top of his or her list.

Political advertising of any kind will be prohibited. The only way a candidate will be allowed to “advertise” will be with their ideas and thoughts given during debates on television, internet or radio. Air time will be given freely for debates by television and radio stations. Perhaps some form of public financing of elections would be needed, but what is wrong with the public gaining their knowledge of candidate views only through the broadcasted debates?

It would seem that the probability of the election of the most qualified candidates would be increased. The people would decide who to support based on ideas only. This would be, when simply looking at the suggestion, the ideal way to determine elections. Another benefit of choosing this type of elections would be that, after the successful candidate has proven to the people that his or her ideas are preferable, and is elected to office, he or she can devote all of their time dealing with all of the important issues of the day instead of raising money for the next election.

No longer will there be any need for he or she to spend any time raising money for the next election. People have come to have a low opinion of our political leaders because of the influence of money. Taking money out of the political process would begin the process of building real democracy as more time would devoted to addressing and solving problems facing the human race.

How blind must we be to hold on to a system where those with the financial power have the advantage simply because they can outspend their opponents on advertising and do not have to rely on the real source of leadership, which is ideas?

Before the Presidential election of 2000 between Gore and Bush we wrote a letter to the editor about presidential debates. The letter was published in the letters to the editor section of a major newspaper in Chicago, Illinois. Our suggestion was for a series of five debates, not only between Gore and Bush, but including all candidates from recognized parties which would be nationally televised during primetime with a length of three hours each.

The debates would deal with the important topics such as war and peace, economics, public health, the Earth’s environment and personal philosophy/spirituality.

How can it be that we accept the current presidential debate format where only two candidates debate three times, at maybe 60 minutes each? Many regard the office as the most powerful on Earth and we give so little time to the people for their decision making?

Would it be a cruel thing to subject the candidates to having to actually expound on their ideas in detail? The election of a president happens only once every four years. Should not we be devoting substantial time for the people to study the candidates’ ideas and weigh them so they can ideally make the best choice? College professors, high school teachers, experts in all fields of endeavor expound for hundreds of hours during their courses on all manner of specific areas of study.

Surely presidential candidates have the ability to express in detail their ideas and views for much longer debate periods. If candidates cannot fill the hours they are given, to answer with detail their ideas to the American people, then the American people will make their voting decisions accordingly. Once again, this would lead to a higher percentage of candidates being elected where the people made actual reasoned choices when they stepped into the voting booth. Is this not the way to go, where democracy becomes more real?

It seems that the conditions have not changed much through the centuries. We have cause for hope with the rise of the internet, where people have the tremendous ability to reach out to each other and share viewpoints and philosophies. We can safely express our gratitude for this gift, which has become an engine for the building of real democracy around the world.

It has become very difficult for those who wish to keep secrets from our brothers and sisters to retain that ability. This is good. If one has come to the conclusion that there are no differences amongst us, that we are all the same children of God, then there are no longer any reasons for secrecy. Now we witness the ever increasing grasp of people of the events that have been kept in secret. With this ever increasing awareness we will be willing to speak out whenever we see corruption, greed, unnecessary violence and suffering. All those human activities which have us feeling regret, sadness and a determination to fix.

The musical group Coldplay has a song titled Fix You. One line of the lyrics reads: “Lights will guide you home, and ignite your bones and I will try to fix you.” Perhaps after all this is one of the main, if not the main reason we are alive in the human skin. To fix each other. To heal each other through the mutual awareness that we are all one. We are all the same.

When Jesus said: “Whatever you do to the least of these, you do to me” he was pointing out a universal law. We are all one. It is all one. Everything that we see, touch and feel is sacred. If one reaches the point where sacredness is seen in everything then it would be impossible to harm anything. If everyone came to the same realization there would be a total elimination of harm.

Would this not seem to be a worthy goal?

Forgive them father they know not what they do. Let us forgive them all as they have not known what they have done. Spiritual power is returning to us here on Mother Earth. Commensurate with this spiritual power is equal return of wisdom.

French writer and existentialist Jean-Paul Sartre (1905-1980) said: “If you begin by saying thou shalt not lie, there is no longer any possibility of political action.” This is why it is important to base the election of political leaders on what they convey during lengthy debates. There must be a minimization of the chance that candidates who are less than totally honest will be elected. Lengthy debates, available for all to see and hear, will result in the maximization of the chance that totally honest candidates will be elected.

French Statesman Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859) said: “I know of no country in which there is so little true independence of mind and freedom of discussion as in America… The majority raises very formidable barriers to the liberty of opinion; within these barriers an author may write whatever he pleases, but he will repent it if he ever steps beyond them. Not that he is exposed to the terrors of an auto-da-fe (public execution during the inquisition), but he is tormented by the slights and persecutions of daily obloquy (censure, blame or abusive language aimed at a person). His political career is closed forever.”

As few as one can speak the truth. The major social changes which have occurred throughout our human history were begun with an idea, many times by one man or woman speaking their truth.

British novelist and historian H.G. Wells (1866-1946) had an interesting take on politics. He said: “My idea of politics is an open conspiracy to hurry these tiresome, wasteful, evil things -nationality and war- out of existence; to end this empire and that empire, and set up one empire of man.”

One must appreciate Wells’ directness. Seems like thought very worthy of emulation. He was spot-on with his description of nationality and war being “tiresome, wasteful, evil things.” You probably feel the same way.

Let’s hurry these tiresome, wasteful, evil things -nationality and war- out of existence.

It is the year 2013.



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