Money Talks. Congress Listens.
Does the NRA reflect the feelings of its members or the needs of its donors? What are its real priorities? A survey of membership in 2012 found that 74% of members are in favor of mandatory background checks for gun purchases. 74%. Why does NRA rhetoric not reflect this in their chosen talking points but instead pushes against background checks? Could it be that they don’t really serve their members but their masters--the armament producers? In the minds of most Americans there is a big difference between defending an individual’s right to gun ownership and a manufacturer’s supposed right to make huge profits by selling the same.
This goes to an even deeper issue, which is, should individual businesses be allowed to pass legislation through Congress that exempts that business from the results of its actions? We see this time and time again. Not just gun makers who don’t want to mess with liability law suits, but health insurers who don’t want to be sued for denial of care, drug companies that don’t want to be responsible for the side effects of their creations, cement companies that want exemption from EPA regulations..... I guess they never considered that if something is wrong with their product they should just fix it. Isn’t that the Free Market system? Sell a good product or die?
I thought business believed in Free Markets. Are markets really free when a corporation can set its own playing field? Influence laws to squash its competition? Where are the refs? Ham-strung by lobbyists and purchased laws. This has now occurred so many times that Americans are losing faith not just in Congress, but in their court system. Our government is a three-legged stool and we seem to have lost one leg already. If two branches of the Constitution go down, it can’t be long before the whole structure falls.
When the founding fathers inserted tort laws into our constitution they did so as a pressure relief valve. When citizens have recourse to courts, and to a court system deemed by all to be fair, there is less violence in society. When citizens lose faith in their courts, democracy falls. Americans are a bit idealistic; we want the system to work the way it is supposed to work.
But as we all know,
Money talks. Congress listens.