The Supreme Court’s Citizens United case, which helped further open the floodgates for corporate political spending in America, is about an ongoing and extremely contentious issue. Even before the ruling, there was plenty of reason to believe the deep-pocketed “corporate people” had far more influence on politics than regular people, and it was a bit amazing to think that corporate interests were given the go-ahead to exert even more power over political outcomes. In California, lawmakers recently put forth a resolution to overturn the unpopular decision, further asking Congress for a constitutional amendment to that end. Obviously, many regular people simply can’t accept the “corporate personhood” argument. The fact that corporate money is equated with “free speech” for these inhuman entities is pretty hard to swallow, too.
The criticism is leveled at corporations from many quarters, including some of their shareholders. All investors should keep track of the resolutions that are being lodged at public companies, and be aware of which ones are willing to voluntarily practice full disclosure of their political spending (or even ban such spending altogether).
Some corporations are coming around to the idea that honesty is the right policy in this area. Of course, they’ve probably gotten a little nudge in that direction in the form of shareholder resolutions demanding transparent policies about political spending. In late March, the Center for Political Accountability reported that 100 corporations have adopted disclosure and oversight of their political spending.
Full Article: The People vs. the “Corporate People” (HAL).