Rebirth of Reason

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Friday, March 28, 2003 - 7:17pmSanction this postReply
I guess it takes two to tango as they say, the willingness of certain industries to influence politicians to agree to their requests: ban warning labels on products because they do not want the public to be informed that their products are dangerous, and corrupt politicians willing to sell their influence to these industries.

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Monday, July 21, 2014 - 1:38pmSanction this postReply

This is an old thread, but it caught my eye.  I really liked Professor Machan's approach - particularly how clearly he exposed the media bia.  


But also how he fastened the guilt on the elected officials, not with the lobbiest.  I've heard too many arguments that our problems are due to the lobbiests, the cronys on Wall Street, or the corporate side of the Military-Industrial complex.  It is the elected officials who are passing the legislation that violates rights.  There is no amount of money that would bring that kind of action out of honest men elected to office who understood and believed in the constitution.

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Thursday, July 31, 2014 - 4:03amSanction this postReply

When you write to your representative, that is citizen involvement.  When you pay someone else to write the letter for you, that is "lobbying." It is a false distinction.  Prof. Machan's thesis is unassailable: only Congress and the courts can block regulation.  Citizen's voicing their opinions can only influence the legislators.  Beyond that, lobbying per se is neither good nor bad any more than writing letters is.  It is the content of the message that is to be judged, not the act of sending it.  


Even in a "limited constituional government" lobbying would still be important.   Citizens have the right to call for or "block" legislation about all kinds of simply operational decisions, such as the architecture of courthouses, or the equipment of the military.  If you cannot be there, then hire someone to carry your message.

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