Bought and Paid For

If you think things changed on November 2, pick up a copy of today’s Politico.

Which I just did.

And it sinks it just a little bit deeper.

Fundamentals still in tact.

Before November 2.

Big corporations firmly in charge.

And after November 2.

Big corporations firmly in charge.

From Congress.

To the White House.

To the press – down to your local Politico.

The November 4, 2010 issue of Politico carries about 25 articles.

Not one of which deals head on with the question of corporate crime or corporate power.

The same issue carries about13 full page ads – at about $10,000 a page – from big corporations and lobbying groups.

Bought and paid for.

Let us count the ways:

Chevron: Big Oil Should Support Small Business. (Two page color spread.)

Altria: A company is only as strong as the people behind it.

Siemens: What can a century-old factory teach us about the future?

Boeing: Real Facts, Real Americans.

AT&T: One is the loneliest number.

Shell: Let’s keep delivering heat to our cities. Let’s Go.

CTIA The Wireless Association: With a 92% Approval Rating, You’d Think We’d be Satisfied.

Lockheed Martin: Meads – It’s All About Ability: Capability. Interoperability. Affordability.

JP Morgan Chase: There are many ways forward for small business.

Ford: For every 52 cars Korea Ships Here, The U.S. Can Only Export One There.

Finmeccanica: The Symbol of Commitment.

BlueCross Blue Shield: From Annual Eye Exams to Free Glasses.

Goldman Sachs: Meet a Small Business Leader with a Recipe for Success.

Politico runs a couple of full page ads for itself, including one about a Politico conference titled “What’s Next for Technology – How Washington will Act on Key Policy Issues in 2011.”

Sponsored by Qualcomm.

WTOP, the local hyper corporate news radio channel, runs a full page ad, touting itself as “the fastest way to reach the corridors of power.”

Perversely, the only direct attack on the Washington corporate power structure comes from a full page ad from the libertarian Cato Institute, admonishing President Obama for not eliminating federal programs we don’t need.

It then runs a list of ten which Cato says “we don’t need,” including “military overreach.”

“The Constitution envisions a U.S. military that ‘provides for the common defense’ of the United States, not one that serves as the world’s policeman and nation-builder. By withdrawing our troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, we could save at least $125 billion next year. Eliminating other unnecessary, overseas missions would allow for a leaner force structure and defense budget, saving at least $100 billion a year without undermining U.S. security.”

And another one titled “Drug War.”

“Since the start of the federal War on Drugs in 1970, we’ve spent hundreds of billions on a futile crusade that’s done little to curb drug use and much to impair our civil liberties. In fact, a Cato study showed that Portugal’s decriminalization of drugs actually lowered drug-related problems. Returning drug policy to the states – where it belongs – would save at least $15 billion annually.”

So, the sun did come up after November 2.

And it snuck on through the crevices of a corporate funded Cato ad.

RUSSELL MOKHIBER is editor of Corporate Crime Reporter.

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