Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog

Coercing ExxonMobil; Constraining CEI: A Harbinger of Grassroots Lobbying Disclosure

Speaker-elect Nancy Pelosi has promised to "break the link between lobbyists and legislation," and has included in that program proposals for grassroots lobbying disclosure. 

Before signing on, both Left and Right should look at Sens. Snowe and Rockefeller’s recent treatment of the Competitive Enterprise Institute and ExxonMobil.

Click on the title to read more.

Filed Under: Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, lobbying, lobbyist

Journalists should avoid cliches like the plague

Is the right of potential candidates to consider carefully whether to run for the most powerful political office in the world a "tired cliche?"  It is according to a new column from the Associated Press, ominously titled "With toes in water, hopefuls hide funds".

We think the "tired cliche" is campaign finance reporting that misrepresents the law and evinces a reflexive skepticism towards any unregulated political activity.

Click the headline to read more. 

Filed Under: Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog

Campaign Finance Disclosure – It’s good for what ails ya’

Worthless patent medicines used to be sold as all-purpose remedies.  Got a problem?  Not feeling well?  Try Dr. Smith’s Miracle Elixer. “It’s good for what ails ya’.”  Of course, Dr. Smith’s Elixer was probably little more than alcohol and syrup.  It didn’t really solve anything, but for a short time, at least, you got a pleasant whoozy feeling. 

In campaign finance, disclosure is the Miracle Elixer.  Everyone supports disclosure of campaign finance information.  But does it really solve every problem, or does it just give you a pleasant whoozy feeling?  Click on the headline to read more.

Filed Under: Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, Pennsylvania

The Disclosure Trap

CCP Chairman Brad Smith observed in a recent blog entry, “While some disclosure may be necessary to satisfy compelling government interests, that recognition is a far cry from holding that any and all disclosure must be a good thing.”  Indeed, excessive disclosure can invade privacy and discourage political participation.  An excellent example can be found in a recent case by the Institute for Justice.

Click the headline to read more.

Filed Under: Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, Colorado

The License in Licensing

Mr Carlson: I had one of my disc jockeys, Dr Johnny Fever, give me the lyrics to a song. He wants to know if you’d let him play that song on the air.
Dr Bob, reading: “Imagine there’s no heaven, it’s easy if you try. No hell below us, above us only sky. Nothing to kill or die for, and no religion too. Imagine no possessions[?] Imagine all the people sharing all the world[?]” That sounds like communism to me: if there’s no heaven, and no religion, then, I assume, no God.
Mr Carlson: There’s not an obscene word in here.
Dr Bob: Not the way I see it.
Mr Carlson: Does it go on your list?
Dr Bob: Arthur, this is typical of the kind of secular, liberal humanist point of view that gluts our airwaves.
Mr Carlson: Yeah, but we’re not talking obscenities here anymore, Bob, we’re talking about ideas — political, philosophical ideas. First you censor a word, and then you censor the idea.
Dr Bob: The idea is man-centered. [A]rthur, this song says there’s no heaven.
Mr Carlson: Ah. No, it says just imagine there’s no heaven.
Dr Bob: That’s blasphemy.
Mr Carlson: On the list or not?
Dr Bob: I have no choice but to say on.
Mr Carlson: That decision was made by one man.

— WKRP In Cincinnati, “Clean Up Radio Everywhere”

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Filed Under: Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, Florida, Washington

Campaign Finance “Reform” and Voter Suppression

Is campaign finance reform unconstitutional vote suppression? Maybe.  Click the headline to read more.

Filed Under: Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog, Ohio

Debating the CFI Report

Michael Malbin, President of the Campaign Finance Institute, responds in part to my comments on CFI’s study of non-profits’ election activity.  And I respond back.  Click the headline above to read the full debate.

Filed Under: Blog, Disclosure, Disclosure Press Release/In the News/Blog