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In Citizens United, Justice Anthony Kennedy musters James Madison in support of a decision striking down congressional efforts to limit corporate electioneering. Whatever the merits of the opinion itself, Kennedy confused his Founding Fathers. In a Liberty and Power lecture (PDF) delivered at the University of Alabama Law School on Thursday, I take a look at Madison’s attitude towards corporations and the potentially corrupting influence they might have on the political process, relying on a significant essay by Madison that Harper’s Magazine uncovered and published in March 1914.
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.
Mark Denbeaux on the NCIS cover-up of three “suicides” at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp
From the June 2014 issue
Percentage increase in the annual number of polio cases in Pakistan since 2005:
A bowl of 4,000-year-old noodles was found in northwestern China; and a spokesman for the Chinese Academy of Sciences said that “this is the earliest empirical evidence of noodles ever found.”
A federal judge sentenced the journalist Barrett Brown to 63 months in prison for sharing a link to information stolen from the private-intelligence firm Stratfor by a hacker in 2011. “Good news!” Brown said in a statement. “They’re now going to send me to investigate the prison-industrial complex.”
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“I hope that after reading the following pages the leaders of the Y. M. C. A. will start a campaign to induce good young men to do nothing. If so, I shall not have lived in vain.”