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Thursday, March 03, 2005

Enemy of Free Speech

I've long admired McCain for his service in Vietnam- but let's face it, the guy is a threat to civil rights. McCain-Feingold limits free speech. That's all it does if you stop seeing the trees and start seeing the forest. The implications of this HORRIBLE, INSIPID law are coming to light- from Ed, at Captain's Quarters.

The FEC, thanks to a John McCain lawsuit, will have to calculate the value of a link on a political website in order to determine whether the owner has overdonated to a campaign -- in other words, committed a felony. Bigger blogs will come under closer scrutiny, which means that any expression of support on CQ with a referential hyperlink may well get valued at more than the $2,000 maximum hard-cash contribution.

In order for me to operate under those conditions, I will need to hire a lawyer and an accountant to guide me through the election laws and calculate my in-kind donations on almost an hourly basis. How many bloggers will put up with that kind of hassle just to speak their minds about candidates and issues? John McCain and Russ Feingold have effectively created an American bureaucracy dedicated to stamping out independent political speech, and the courts have abdicated all reason in declaring it constitutional.

Not many. Now, to be clear, the three Democrat-appointed judges on the FEC are the ones extending McCain-Feingold to the internet. (I just want to spread the free speech stifling blame around.) But, to be honest, who cares? The judges aren't the problem. The FEC is NOT the problem. The problem is the McCain-Feingold!

We've all heard Niemoeller's:

First they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out - because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for the communists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for me - and their was no one left to speak for me.

Let's change it a bit:
First they came for the soft money - I didn't care because I didn't even know what 'soft money' really was.
Then they came for the big donors of hard money - I didn't care 'cause screw those millionaires.
Then they came for the corporations and unions that wanted to run ads during the 60 days before an election - I didn't care because corporations are evil and unions are evil-er.
Now they're coming after me - Oh shit!

This is an opportunity to defeat McCain-Feingold, and hopefully to let John McCain know that being a war hero doens't make it okay to limit free speech in America. The worst thing bloggers could do is limit our protests so that that bloggers or the internet will be exempt from this law. The law sucks and needs to go.


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