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Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Hillary: The Movie

The Sunday Chronicle ran a piece by Adam Liptak of the New York Times about an upcoming Supreme Court case stemming from the Citizens United documentary “Hillary: The Movie.” The court will be re-examining Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce, a 1990 decision upholding restrictions on corporate campaign spending.

Citizens United once filed a FEC complaint against Michael Moore for his film “Fahrenheit 911,” and has produced films attacking such GOP bugaboos as immigration, The UN, and The ACLU. The Hillary movie producer credits go to “The Lincoln Club of Orange County,” Orange County California being the wealthy, froth-mouthed bastion of Paleo-Conservatism. Last year a DC District Court ruled that “Hillary: The Movie” was “express advocacy,” and could not receive corporate funding, leading Citizens United to go to court rather than reveal their sources of income.

I looked at their Hillary film, it’s all on YouTube, but I couldn’t stand to watch much of it. It consists of Republican talking heads like Anne Coulter, Robert Novak, Bay Buchanan, Dick Morris, and Newt Gingrich talking about what a horrible person Mrs. Clinton is. Funny, none of these speakers come without their own baggage. Be they liars, cheats, spy-outers, hacks, or toe-suckers, they raise Clinton in my esteem by the quality of enemies she makes. When this film was made, she was front-runner for the Democratic nomination, and they were all scared.

These dubious testimonials are crosscut with shots of news clippings about Mrs. Clinton, all the scariest headlines from her ordeal by right-wing smear machine. Anyways, the production values are a step above other Republican film ventures like the Phil Gramm- produced soft-porn “Truck Stop Women,” or the pro-apartheid action movie “Red Scorpion” written by Jack Abramoff.

As this case makes the news, look for apocalyptic talk about the end of free speech or the unstoppable power of money in politics, but don’t expect much earth-shaking. New Justice Sotomayor is expected to vote much like David Souter would have, leaving Chief Justice John Roberts the only question mark, and that’s not much of a question. There is little chance that the court will act to overturn the 1886 Santa Clara v. Southern Pacific Railroad decision that granted personhood to corporations, allowing them the right to political and other non-commercial free speech, the right against self-incrimination, right to privacy and the right to lobby the government, not to mention the right to own slaves, be richer than God, and be immortal.


At 11:09 AM , Blogger Rick Claypool said...

Thanks for blogging about this issue! The fact that the Supreme Court decided to re-hear arguments in this case is quite alarming. As if there isn't too much corporate influence in politics already! If restrictions on corporate spending fly out the window, we can kiss goodbye the progress we've made on stopping climate change, health care reform, consumer protections -- the works! There's a lot of great information and tools for activists at Public Citizen's

At 6:03 PM , Blogger Lulu Maude said...

Lately I've been sorry that all the gun-nuts come from the right. I'd love to see a few of these assholes taken out. Sick of them, I am.

Blablabla, yes, I know that it's the price of free speech, but can't they say anything without lying? And since when does lying constitute free speech??

At 9:49 PM , Blogger Brad said...

Really. I'm lobbying to require TV personalities to don my patented Polygraph Pants before they go on the air. The staff of certain news organs would soon be meeting in some burn unit after the trousers burst into flames.

At 3:40 AM , Blogger judge chief charly hoarse said...

Thanks for noticing; great work you're doing, Citizens. Hello to you, Ms. Lulu, and good luck to you too, burning-pants guy.


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