Lobbying - the Cancer Thats Killing American Politics
Money is the drug of choice in Washington and professional lobbyists are the pushers supplying it in exchange for influence for their corporate masters.
Like so many things in America, the practice of political lobbying is not always what it claims to be. In theory it is an expression of the publics right to petition their government and make their voice heard for change.
In practice it is a cancer that has destroyed the credibility of American politics. It is the corrupt buying and selling of power. It is the way the system is perverted to work in favor of the rich and the big corporations but against the interests of the public the politicians are supposed to serve.
There are literally thousands of ‘lobbyists’ swarming Washington, far more than there are politicians, and billions of dollars sloshing around in ‘campaign contributions’ and bribes and kickbacks. Lobbyists have all the money in the world to promote the interests of their masters and, in a system that is ultimately all about money, politicians are always ready to accommodate them.
Mostly, the thousands of highly-paid lobbyists pushing money and favors at your elected politicians represent a narrow range of greed and vested interest such as big corporations, the health, and defense industries as well as richly funded pressure groups. They also, alarmingly, represent foreign governments and interests that may be hostile to America. Lobbyists don’t care because they’re mercenaries.
This is not a new problem. Its just been getting worse. Many politicians, including Obama, have made pious noises about sweeping the corrupting influence of the lobbyists from Washington but no-one ever actually does anything because, in Americas corrupt and broken political system, the lure of big money is too powerful. The politicians and lobbyists need each other in a self-perpetuating circle of co-dependency.
The scandal of lobbyists in Washington is so deeply engrained in Americas political system that many simply cannot see how shockingly sleazy and damaging it is. They don’t understand that it makes America look like some corrupt third-world power to other western countries. But it does.
With neither of Americas so-called political parties committed to excising the cancer of lobbying from the body politic its hard to see how change can come. The present system colludes in, and supports, the corruption so clearly its never willingly going to reform itself. When money talks, principles walk.