Robert B. Reich: How to end crony capitalism



Reich really epitomizes the old saying about someone: smart, smart, stupid, but this op ed isn’t so stupid. Of course it doesn’t occur to him that unions and lawyers are special interests too, nor that the essential problem is that when government takes over the economy, corruption surges, but he does get some of the music right.

(From The Baltimore Sun)

Lest you conclude it’s only Republicans who have been pocketing big bucks in exchange for political favors, consider what Big Tech — an industry that has mostly bankrolled Democrats — is up to.

It’s mobilizing an army of lobbyists and lawyers — including senior advisors to Hillary Clinton‘s campaign — to help scuttle a proposed law requiring Google, Facebook and other major Internet companies to disclose who is purchasing their online political advertising.

After revelations that Russian-linked operatives bought deceptive ads in the run-up to the 2016 election, you’d think this would be a no-brainer. But never underestimate the power of big money, whichever side of the aisle it’s aimed at.

Often, it’s both sides. Last week, The Washington Post and “60 Minutes” reported that Big Pharma contributed close to $1.5 million to Democrats as well as Republicans in order to secure enactment of the so-called Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2016.

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