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Samuelson column on money was hooey

I write this letter just before Thanksgiving Day to rebut the op-ed column by Robert Samuelson published in the Daily Mail.

Samuelson's claim was that, having examined records of U.S. government income and expenditures and finding no effects there with respect to corporations, we can be sure government does little to favor these corporations. What hooey.

When governments favor corporations they pass laws or interpret regulations to increase profits at the expense of ordinary citizens. These profit increases will never show up on government accounts or indeed on any accounts.

Examples: Big coal may save money through lax safety enforcement; result: increased profit and additional miner deaths. Or, big coal might save money dumping untreated sludge into the ground; result: more profit and polluted water.

Or big coal might save money consolidating pension liabilities into one firm and then having that firm declare bankruptcy. Result: well, you get the picture.

In a similar manner the payments made to purchase these favors will also never appear on government accounts, and thanks to the Citizens United case they will now be as invisible as the favors.

The political donations to candidates who subsequently do favors for their donors, can now, thanks to Citizens United, be bigger and more secret than previously had been the case.

Any thoughtful person who cares about miner's lives, or groundwater pollution, or protection of earned pension income, will be against the Citizens United ruling.

John D. Palmer

Charleston

 


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