Caleb Harris: Money is destroying our political system

Untitled-184Big-money corporations have a huge impact in politics, mostly by cutting out the have-nots. Politics have a bad reputation, as well.

Money doesn’t just give big spenders the chance to express a view or support a candidate; it gives them leverage to reshape the American vote.

The richest people have pulled away from the rest of America. They want their taxes during this time of record deficits, which means rampant under-investment in our future. There is special treatment for corporations that are imposing major environmental costs and financial risks on our society, and that has prevented our society from growing.

Before you fix inequality, climate change, health care and the student debt crisis, you have to fix America’s broken political system. Politics has always been crocked and rigged because money can buy votes.

da9fe85cf5609d71f187f9eb983e8b02America will not see progress until wealthy entities are no longer allowed to buy politicians. The problem isn’t that Americans don’t agree. The main issue is that the corporate class doesn’t agree with this agenda, and that class dominates our politics.

Eighty-three percent of Americans agree and nearly 60 percent “strongly” agree that “the rules of the economy matter and also that the top 1 percent have used their influence to shape the rules of the economy to their advantage.” Americans believe that policies enacted since the Great Recession have benefited Wall Street, big corporations and the wealthy, but have left out the poor and middle class people.

A majority of Republicans favor breaking up the big banks. Nine out of 10 voters agreed that it’s important to regulate financial services and products so they will be fair to consumers. Also, Wall Street financial companies should be held accountable for the practices that caused the financial crisis.

There needs to be an amendment that would allow Congress and the state to restore campaign finance limits. Without this change, big money interests will continue to use their immense resources as a megaphone, drowning out the free speech of individuals and groups. Everyone should have a right to be heard. If not, the wealthy will continue to take more money and manipulate others to keep their big corporations growing more and more.

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