Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Under the Law, Not Beneath It

Magna Carta Nation

Celebrating the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta Libertatum this week, I noted how a document intended to serve the very upper classes, by limiting each others’ powers, led to liberty for all.

The Nation, on the other hand, used it to excoriate the Citizens United ruling.

“Magna Carta reminds us that no man is above the law,” wrote John Nichols on Monday. “But it should not be imagined that Magna Carta established democracy, or anything akin to it.”

Of course the Magna Carta did not establish democracy. No one said it did. And neither Britain nor America has pure democracy, if you define it . . . in Nichols fashion. What is he driving at?

If we respect the notion that the rule of law must apply to all . . . then surely it must apply to corporations.

And, surely, the best celebration of those premises in the United States must be the extension of the movement to amend the US Constitution to declare that corporations are not people, money is not speech, and citizens and their elected representatives have the authority to organize elections — and systems of governance — where our votes matter more than their dollars.

Sure, Mr. Nichols, corporations shouldn’t be above the law. But they shouldn’t be below it, either. And in America we have rights to free speech and press. Those rights “surely . . . must apply to corporations.”

Let’s increase the liberating powers of democracy: open up ballot access, de-privilege incumbents, count votes in a non-mere-plurality-wins fashion.

But let’s not throw out equal rights under the law, even in the name of democracy.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

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Magna Carta Nation


By: CS Admin


  1. JFB says:

    It we are truly going back to basics it should be to limiting the Federal Government only to the actually and directly enumerated powers, all else to the States and people. 
    Take the economic and redistributionist power away from the Federal government and the money complained of will leave with it, and corporations will have no reason to “contribute” to influence. As for the States, the competition between them will limit their abilities to oppress their citizens. 

  2. JFB makes a good point, with which I agree. 

    Also Paul, you wrote:

    I agree with that, but why stop there. Why not take advantage of the first amendment to petition for a national ballot initiative on an issue, to pick one I’d start with term limits. And once that is done let’s repeal the Federal Reserve Act and revoke the Constitutional Amendment authorizing the Income Tax. All three would pass easily if the people had a  vote. 

    Just sayin’…..

    • PS forgot to paste the portion of today’s Common Sense to which I referred. Sorry about that, here it is: 

      “Let’s increase the liberating powers of democracy: open up ballot access, de-privilege incumbents, count votes in a non-mere-plurality-wins fashion.”

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