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The Almighty Buck Politics

Comcast PAC Gave Money To Every Senator Examining Time Warner Cable Merger 133

Posted by samzenpus
from the best-government-money-can-buy dept.
An anonymous reader writes in with news about money and politics that is sure to shock no one."It's no surprise that Comcast donates money to members of Congress. Political connections come in handy for a company seeking government approval of mergers, like Comcast's 2011 purchase of NBCUniversal and its proposed acquisition of Time Warner Cable (TWC). But just how many politicians have accepted money from Comcast's political arm? In the case of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which held the first congressional hearing on the Comcast/TWC merger yesterday, the answer is all of them."
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Comcast PAC Gave Money To Every Senator Examining Time Warner Cable Merger

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:04PM (#46719975)

    So let's see all of the Congress recuse themselves because of a conflict of interest, thus they can't do anything, thus...we're actually better off.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:07PM (#46719995)

    This is how America ceases to be great. We lose our edge, because society gets hijacked and the money flows to the wrong places instead of spurring innovation.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by cheater512 (783349)

      America is deluded that they were great to begin with. A super power? Maybe. But 'great'? Wtf.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Many countries are great or have been great in their past which includes the US due to their contributions to the rest of the world. To say otherwise is simply being ignorant of the rest of the world.
        • by rsilvergun (571051) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @10:21PM (#46721819)
          Actually we're the only country that wasn't blasted into the stone age during WWII. For a brief period of time fear of communists stealing factories kept off-shoring at bay (ironically it Marx used to warn that capital flowing to where labor was cheapest was a problem). A small group of progressives dragged the rest of our country out of the uncivilized mess it was mired in (the American South didn't exactly go along with the the whole Civil Rights thing quietly, and lately they've been pushing voter suppression hard).

          I hate to say it, but I wouldn't so much as call us 'great' as I would very lucky. For most Americans prosperity was a temporary blip on the radar they're watching fade away...
          • by dcw3 (649211)

            I'd like to challenge your use of the word progressives here. How do they compare to those you would call progressive today?

            • The people the Right are dismissing as being "progressives" and "liberals" today are to the right of Everett Dirksen. I'm not sure Strom Thurmond would pass one of today's conservative litmus test suites.
            • Except Maybe Alan Grayson, and it's all he can do to hold onto his seat. Back when the health care debate was raging he pointed out that the right wing's answer was If you get sick, die quick [youtube.com]. They moved in with so much money he lost his seat, and since they own the media they also stopped covering anything he said.

              I don't have anything to compare to. Anyone who is even remotely progressive just gets destroyed...
              • by dcw3 (649211)

                Interesting. I'll agree with you that they don't compare. I'll disagree regarding the right wing's answer, and counter that Grayson was making shit up for political fodder. I'll also disagree that they own the media...and are far from it, but then maybe your definition of "right wing" differs from mine.

          • Actually we're the only country that wasn't blasted into the stone age during WWII

            Canada and Australia say hi...

      • by pitchpipe (708843) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:46PM (#46720343)

        America is deluded that they were great to begin with. A super power? Maybe. But 'great'? Wtf.

        Sorry. Our founding fathers were mostly a bunch of bad asses with really good ideas that they were willing to fight for, and the country that came out of that fight was great.

        It's the money grubbing assholes who are fucking it up now by claiming that money = free speech and corporations are people. That means that the ultra rich have at least 10,000 times as much speech as most of us, and that there are a lot of people that have no voice at all. Money should not be equivalent to free speech. Never. It's a fucking travesty that it is, and the people who made it so are destroying our country. I'm not being hyperbolic here.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Obfuscant (592200)

          and that there are a lot of people that have no voice at all.

          The reason those people have "no voice at all" is because ... they don't have the money to pay for it. That really does make the point that money is required for the full exercise of free speech. The days of standing on a soapbox on a street corner and reaching a significant number of people with one's speech are long gone.

          Money should not be equivalent to free speech. Never.

          Then it is a good thing that money isn't equivalent to free speech. Money is, however, as your own statements show, a requirement for full exercise of same. And by extension, telling pe

          • by pitchpipe (708843) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @07:25PM (#46720659)

            and that there are a lot of people that have no voice at all.

            The reason those people have "no voice at all" is because ... they don't have the money to pay for it. That really does make the point that money is required for the full exercise of free speech.

            In this country (the US), yes I'll give you that, but it shouldn't be that way. They've gamed the system so that the more money you have, the more speech you have, but it's a rigged system.

            I'm saying that inherently money != free speech, and that the law should reflect that. If we had a constitutional amendment explicitly stating that money != free speech then we could talk sensibly about limiting its corrupting influence. As it is now it has taken pretty much all of the power away from the people. You say "ah, but go out and vote!" Okay, I'll go vote for asshole 'A' or asshole 'B'. Those are my realistic choices. Not much of a choice there, and the billions floating around in politics ensures that will always be the case.

            • by Obfuscant (592200)

              In this country (the US), yes I'll give you that, but it shouldn't be that way. They've gamed the system so that the more money you have, the more speech you have, but it's a rigged system.

              This "gaming" of the system is called "someone has to pay the bill". Neither print, online, nor broadcast media are free of cost.

              I'm saying that inherently money != free speech,

              Yes, we've already dealt with the concept that money isn't equivalent to free speech, but that it is a requirement to have it.

              then we could talk sensibly about limiting its corrupting influence.

              There are already laws dealing with bribery and graft. I suspect that since you are talking about "corrupting influence" in the same article that talks about money being necessary for effective free speech that you want to limit the money spent on free s

              • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

                by Anonymous Coward

                Anon because I modded you as above.

                Paying the bill: there are other ways. If you say that the wealthy and corporations will not participate in equal election funding, then answer why they wont. I strongly believe it is because they will not have the influence that their moneys currently give them. Which is corruption and bribery in my mind. And this money silences many many many more than no money ever would.

                Requirement to have money to have speech: see above, and why does it *have* to be that way?

                Bri

                • by Obfuscant (592200)

                  Anon because I modded you as above.

                  Having your cake and eating it too.

                  Paying the bill: there are other ways.

                  No, there are no other ways. It costs money to run radio ads. It costs money to run a website. It costs money to run print ads. SOMEONE has to pay for that. There is no other way.

                  If you say that the wealthy and corporations will not participate in equal election funding, then answer why they wont.

                  If I say what? That if you prohibit the use of money to pay for effective speech the rich won't be able to participate in speech? That should be obvious. If the poor cannot buy airtime because they don't individually have the money and you prohibit them from forming groups (like CU) with the in

              • by Gr8Apes (679165)
                The easiest way to solve the 2 party issue is to disallow party affiliation on all ballots. Only names for the position, listed in alphabetical order on first or last name ascending or descending decided randomly per spot, and ideally per ballot with electronic voting. You either know them, or you don't. Voters can't just pull a red or blue lever. Instant destruction of the 2 party system for many of the lower level positions. As soon as that happens, you may see it bubble on up the hierarchy, as people rea
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Anonymous Coward

            Anon because I modded you up ( because you were rated "Troll" when I did, which I dont think was fair ).

            "Then it is a good thing that money isn't equivalent to free speech. Money is, however, as your own statements show, a requirement for full exercise of same."

            A distinction without much distinction.
            If you cant really have speech without money, then allowing money to = speech means that people without money are removed from the exercise of same.

            "And by extension, telling people they cannot spend their money

            • by pnutjam (523990)
              Too bad this was anonymous, it's an excellent post.
            • by Obfuscant (592200)

              A distinction without much distinction.

              An important distinction not because of the final effect but because of the difference between trying to claim that money is equivalent to speech and the truth that money is necessary for whatever speech is being made. "I spent $1000" says nothing of any meaning. "I believe X" and spending $1000 for airtime does. That is the difference.

              But you're right on one part: banning money mean you effectively ban the speech. Because the former is a requirement for the latter, banning the former effectively bans the

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by TheRaven64 (641858)
            I was thinking about this the other day. The core problem is not lobbying, because it's perfectly sensible that people with an interest in a particular topic would want to talk to their elected representatives about it. The problem is unequal access to lobbying, and that comes from the massive wealth inequality in the USA and the fact that lobbying is expensive. Perhaps a better solution would be for each member of the electorate to have allocated a certain amount of their representatives' time.

            For ex

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          I have seen the term "free speech" used in a lost of stories lately and am horrified by the number of people who do not even understand the term. It appears that the term "free speech" is hijacked to mean whatever the hell the poster wants it to mean at the time.

          It is truly staggering and I am at a loss as to why people make this huge mistake? It is honestly and very interesting social phenomenon to me.

          Is this just an American thing? Has your schooling system and/or corporate media engrained some arbitrary
          • by Obfuscant (592200)

            How on EARTH is "donating" money to politicians ANYTHING to do with free speech?!

            "I like what you said and I want to help you say it to more people that you otherwise wouldn't be able to." It's akin to the idea that setting aside "free speech zones" is a bad idea because it tries to limit the amount of "free" speech someone has based on his ability to get to and stay in that zone.

            But the problem is that the issue is much larger than just giving money to a candidate. CU wasn't about giving money to a candidate.

            My god people: wake the fuck up. This is nothing more than legalised corruption. Plain and simple.

            Is it your opinion that anything anyone says to support a candidate for ele

            • Yeah, I'd kinda like to think that the quid pro quo was between the politicians and the voters.. But that's just me

              I don't know why people make such a big thing out of speech. It's just words, and when they conflict with observation, they can be discarded as false. Nobody is required to believe what they see and hear.

            • You arguments are waffling around the core point: corporate and other large donations undermine democracy and cause conflicts of interest and the appearance of corruption. Their intent is to override the will of the people and it has been EXTREMELY successful in your country.

              Thus we have the exchange of money to vote/legislate against the will of the people.

              THIS IS CORRUPTION.

              You can dress it up and put lipstick on it as you have done above but the fact will not change. Even using your own logic a candi
          • by MrSome (2587847)

            It has to do with free speech because the Supreme Court ruled that anyone should be able to give any amount of money to anyone they want, and their reasoning for allowing this is because they believe giving that money to anyone you want is defensible because it is free speech. So, while I understand your confusion, and I agree that the two have nothing to do with each other, the point the Supreme Court made is...

            Giving money to politicians = Free Speech. Essentially saying we have no right to infringe on th

            • Thanks for the explanation. :) I was honestly scratching my head over this bizarre meme.

              BTW: The supreme court (i.e. the gaggle of mummified political cronies) does not get to change the meaning of words.

              So to rephrase in a more harsh wat: Your supreme court legalised corruption and attempted to redefine the term free speech to include a tangential concept of bribery. The devastating results to your democracy are blatantly obvious to everyone around the world to see.

              Would that about cover it? ;)
              • by pitchpipe (708843)

                The devastating results to your democracy are blatantly obvious to everyone around the world to see.

                Obvious to everyone except our lunatic conservatives. Or maybe it is obvious to them and this is their goal.

        • Sorry. Our founding fathers were mostly a bunch of bad asses with really good ideas that they were willing to fight for, and the country that came out of that fight was great.

          It's the money grubbing assholes who are fucking it up now by claiming that money = free speech and corporations are people. That means that the ultra rich have at least 10,000 times as much speech as most of us, and that there are a lot of people that have no voice at all. Money should not be equivalent to free speech. Never. It's a fucking travesty that it is, and the people who made it so are destroying our country. I'm not being hyperbolic here.

          Except that most of the founding fathers were wealthy, mercantile types. You may recall that at the outset, most states had minimum property requirements to be eligible to vote. It took quite some time to achieve even universal white male suffrage. And, for every increase in suffrage (removing property restrictions, racial restrictions, gender restrictions), and for every increase in the rights of the common class over the monied class (e.g., collective bargaining, minimum wage, abolishing child labour, th

      • by artor3 (1344997)

        America was and is great. How can you judge a country's greatness, if not by the quality of life it affords to its people? And the average person born in the US has a significantly higher quality of life than at least 80% of the world's population.

        The US could certainly be a lot better, but to say it isn't and never was great smacks of knee-jerk cynicism masquerading as wisdom.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by MarcoAtWork (28889)

          If you have that few settlers come into a continent as large, virgin and as rich as North America (compared to tiny European countries that had been exploited for millennia in most cases, with very few natural resources) it seems to me that the US standards of living should've been 10x what the rest of the world had, if you take into account that Europe suffered through two world wars on its soil (where the second one especially nearly destroyed it industrially for many years) the US standards of living sho

          • by artor3 (1344997)

            it seems to me that the US standards of living should've been 10x what the rest of the world had ... I don't see life in the US being 10x better

            Has it occurred to you that maybe you just had unrealistic expectations?

            • do you think that a country like the US with the vast, vast, vast natural resources it contains, its economic power, and the amount of extremely bright people that call it their home should not have 10x the standard of living of a small country in Europe with next to no natural resources, much fewer inhabitants, and an industry that was basically razed to the ground a generation ago?

              If US society was geared towards making life as good as possible for everybody I am sure by now everybody would be on basic in

              • by artor3 (1344997)

                do you think that a country like the US with the vast, vast, vast natural resources it contains, its economic power, and the amount of extremely bright people that call it their home should not have 10x the standard of living of a small country in Europe with next to no natural resources, much fewer inhabitants, and an industry that was basically razed to the ground a generation ago?

                No, I don't think the US should have 10x the standard of living of a small European country. Why would you expect such a thing? We don't have 10x the resources per capita, and even if we did, there's the question of diminishing returns. Additionally, we're still people, with all the murder and rape and greed that entails. You have these absurdly high expectations, and then get all upset when we can't live up to them.

                For what its worth, I think you and I are very alike in our politics. I agree with pret

                • this is what I was getting at above when I was talking about how any time there is any criticism of the US its inhabitants will often respond with "we are doing the best we can" or "if you don't like it here leave" or "it's better here than in a 3rd world country" or "since you don't live here you are not allowed to comment" etc. the vast majority of people are glad to be born where they were, if you removed economic incentives very, very few people would emigrate and leave behind their family, friends and

      • They were certainly part of something great, at one point.

        Sincerely,

        The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
    • by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:38PM (#46720271)

      We lose our edge, because society gets hijacked and the money flows to the wrong places instead of spurring innovation.

      There is a theory that Japan and Germany recovered and prospered so quickly after WWII because their profound defeat destroyed so many entrenched special interest groups that could no longer block progress.

    • by F34nor (321515) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @08:27PM (#46721171)

      The term of art you are looking for is "rent seeking behavior"

    • by B33rNinj4 (666756)
      Pretty much. Sadly, as long as voters get their one or two ideological issues supported their representatives in the legislature can do whatever they want.
  • by Trachman (3499895) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:10PM (#46720017)
    If fact of donations will be confirmed, then Comcast lost in the court of public opinion. The merger should not be approved on the ground of anti-trust laws, unfair competition and reduced choice by consumers. At the minimum this should send a message to the future senators who will be tempted to take donations of the big business.
    • by MightyMartian (840721) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:16PM (#46720063) Journal

      Yeah, I'm sure Comcast's management and investors totally feel bad about that whole public opinion thing.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Yes, because Comcast is already doing so well in the court of public opinion. They are #1 in fact!

        http://www.cnet.com/news/comcast-wins-worst-company-in-america/

      • by F34nor (321515)

        We should be Comcast's management and investors. Instead of bitching cancel your cable contract and buy Comcast stock. It will drive the share price down increasing the rate at which we can buy the sock. At 51% we can kick the fucking board of asshole to the curb and stack upper management with consumer focused executives. At current prices it is $150 per household for about 1.5 years but that should rapidly shift as investors flee the possibility of coop vs. rape prices. Capitalism can be democratic.

        • Trying for a pump and dump are we?
          • by F34nor (321515)

            No a pump and hold. Drive the stock own to allow send user to buy 51% and vote in new management. If the government won't regulate natural monopolies than why don't we just buy them out?

            • Yes, I understood what you said. What I was implying was that your post could be read as a cover story for a pump&dump scheme.
      • by N0Man74 (1620447)

        Yeah, I'm sure Comcast's management and investors totally feel bad about that whole public opinion thing.

        Public opinion doesn't matter much when you engineer local monopolies.

    • by nurb432 (527695) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:17PM (#46720069) Homepage Journal

      If fact of donations will be confirmed, then Comcast lost in the court of public opinion

      Don't worry, there will be a squirrel event shortly and people will forget all about it. Then the merger will be quietly approved and by the time the rates go up, it will be too late.

      If you rely on the general public you will always be disappointed, they are idiots and easily lead and/or distracted.

    • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:27PM (#46720131) Journal
      It's not bribery, it's just a corporate person engaging in free speech. Indeed, our own dear supreme court asserts the view that this sort of activity does not even create the impression of impropriety...
      • by dougmc (70836)

        Indeed, our own dear supreme court asserts the view that this sort of activity does not even create the impression of impropriety...

        No, the view that they asserted was that it did not violate the Constitution, not anything about the "impression of impropriety".

        For the most part, the Supreme Court doesn't rule on if things are right or wrong, good or bad, just or unjust -- they rule on if they're allowed or prohibited by the Constitution (or other laws, but most of the time they seem to work based on the Constitution.)

        • by F34nor (321515)

          But it is prima fascia absurd. If money is protected political speech and speech cannot be regulated than why can't I let Ben Franklin do the talking?

          • by dougmc (70836)

            But they didn't rule on if it was absurd or not. They ruled on if it was prohibited by the Constitution and other laws, and found the answer to be "no".

      • Impropriety is the act of taking the bribe, not offering it. The issue should be the love of money, not the money itself.

    • by NoKaOi (1415755)

      If fact of donations will be confirmed, then Comcast lost in the court of public opinion.

      Lost public opinion? Maybe on /. but not to most of the voting public. Do you think CNN/NBC/Fox News will feature a story about this? And even if they did, would most people care? The only court of public opinion that matters is political candidates. Giving money to them means more campaign advertising for their candidate, thus is a win in the court of public opinion.

      I do agree with you about calling it bribery. Why even bother using the term campaign contribution anymore? "Bribe" is a convenient syn

      • by Obfuscant (592200)

        Lost public opinion? Maybe on /. but not to most of the voting public.

        This. Most of the voting public looks out into the world and sees that they have only one choice for cable, whether that's Comcast or Time Warner or something else. They realize that a TW/Comcast merger will leave them with exactly the same one choice, maybe with a different name is all ("Timecast"? "Comner"? "Timefinity"?). In this case, one plus one really does equal one. Where's the reduced competition? Same choice before, same choice after.

        And costs going up? That's going to happen whether the merger h

    • Why would you care about public opinion if you're buying a monopoly? What is the cable company going to do if you tell them to fuck off? Lick their fingers and rub their nipples? [youtube.com]

      • by dougmc (70836)

        Comcast isn't quite a monopoly, and won't be even if they've merged with Time Warner. That said, the number of choices for cable/internet/phone to a specific person tend to be pretty small ... and sometimes the number of choices is one, but often it's two or three. For example, I live in the suburbs of Austin, and can get service from Time Warner, AT&T, Direct TV and Dish Network. Now, the last two are really only good options for cable and not phone/internet, but even so, there's still two choices f

    • by Lobachevsky (465666) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @07:10PM (#46720563)

      Donations aren't bribery, because donations aren't payment _for_ anything. A bribe is payment _for_ some political action. It's completely legal to give donations. That's why prostitution is illegal but high-end escorts are legal. The high-end escort asks for a 'donation' and no service is promised. Of course, it's pretty obvious she won't give any service if there's no donation. But she doesn't _promise_ service for a donation. It's just that her reputation as an escort will suffer if she takes the money and runs. If she does turn tricks and the police catch her, she gets off scott free under the story that she independently fell in love and wanted a night of romance wit the John, which had _nothing_ to do with with the "donation". Senators and other politicians are high-end escorts of a different shade.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    This is all we know about. You'd be a fool to think that millions more didn't seep in to their pockets via other dark money laundering.

  • by 228e2 (934443) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:20PM (#46720087)
    I work at the FCC (as an Engineer) I want some of that trickle down . . . . :(
    • I work at the FCC (as an Engineer) I want some of that trickle down . . . . :(

      Have you tried discovering that the merger would cause *some sort of treknobabble apocalyptic issue involving scary RF terms and America losing its god-given right to TV*; but expressing a willingness to 'review your preliminary results in collaboration with industry experts' for a modest consulting fee?

  • by mmell (832646) <mike.mell@gmail.com> on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:29PM (#46720155)
    We're very proud here. We have the best government that money can buy!
  • by Great Big Bird (1751616) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:39PM (#46720277)
    Get money out of politics! http://www.wolf-pac.com/ [wolf-pac.com]
  • Order Of Events (Score:3, Interesting)

    by rsmith-mac (639075) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @06:39PM (#46720291)

    It would probably be useful to specify the order of events in TFS, as the current summary implies they received campaign contributions after they started investigating the merger.

    TFA is focusing on past campaign contributions - that is contributions before the investigation, seeing as how the investigation just started. Everyone on the committee has received a campaign contribution at some point in the past, even Al Franken. Which is more a statement on the fact that Comcast pretty much contributes to every incumbent's congressional campaign, rather than this being a case of where these senators were specifically targeted.

    Which to be clear, still isn't a good thing by any means. This means everyone on that committee has received a contribution at some point. But it's not the same thing as giving contributions to someone when an active investigation is going on, something that would be far shadier.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    There is no way that any business should be allowed to donate money to the world of politics. Each individual should be able to donate and that donation should be fully disclosed for all to see. But businesses should not be allowed to donate or lobby at all.

  • Dumb and Dumber (Score:4, Informative)

    by jtara (133429) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @07:05PM (#46720519)

    San Diego developers already use cable service as a criteria when house-hunting. You want to be in a Cox area! Unfortunately, most of the jobs are in Time Warner areas. Now the service will go from bad to worse...

    -- a lucky South-of-Interstate-8 developer...

  • Guys, money is free speech.

    And LIRC bribery usually involves talking to someone first....

    • Water is wet
    • The Sun is hot
    • The sky is blue (except for where it's gray)
    • by MitchDev (2526834)

      The weather tonight, Darl.

      Continued mostly dark overnight with widely scattered light towards dawn...

  • News? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by EMG at MU (1194965) on Thursday April 10, 2014 @10:54PM (#46721961)
    This would have been news if Comcast didn't give every member of congress that had anything to do with their merger money.

    People don't care anymore. The people in power have switched the conversation from us (regular people) vs them (those in positions of power) into us ("democrats") vs us ("republicans"). If you point out that huge corporations bribe congress someone will point out that huge unions bribe congress. If you point out that the oil/gas sectors bribe republicans someone will point out that hollywood bribes democrats. We can't have a conversation about how it is wrong for any special interest to have that much influence just because of $ because we are too busy beating each other over the head.

    The argument people have now is: "my special interest should be lobbying, your special interest shouldn't".
    • by zarthrag (650912)

      Sigh....outlawing lobbying is like getting a 4yo to agree to abolishing cookie jars ... while his/her hand is in it. I don't see a solution to the problem at all. The USA is run by money to the point where it isn't proper to call it anything but an oligarchy.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Democracy = Plutocracy

    • by MitchDev (2526834)

      America never was a Democracy, it was and is a Plutocracy disguised as a representative republic.

  • ...should be considered a treasonous level of bribery.

  • Under the US Constitution, the people, including in this case corporations, have a right to "petition the government", and that is what these contributions are. They are a way that Comcast makes known to politicians its priorities. People who oppose Comcast's priorities can also contribute and petition the government. Typically, however, those better organized get their way more frequently. The open Internet is over. The Internet has turned into a corporate and profit driven shake-down racket.

  • It already owns a sizable chunk of the broadcast medium. Now it and other big companies want to own the politicians too. With of course, the full acquiescence and enthusiasm of those politicians.

    We wonder why it costs money to reach people. It's because the marketplace is tightly controlled.

  • The people who direct the corporate construct are the actual people. Not the construct.

  • "The LA Times story notes that Franken was using his opposition to the Comcast/NBC deal to raise more campaign funds. A Franken spokesperson told the newspaper at the time that there were no plans to return the donation, saying, "He campaigned pretty clearly that he was going to stand up to special interests."

    Helped with his anti-comcast campaign

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