Three Political Myths


From: newsvine.com - By AmusedinVa

(NOTE: My comments to the below Myths & Facts are shown in "colored italics".)

Some common political myths and misconceptions:


MYTH - Corporations back Republicans and get special favors from them while Democrats don't.

FACT - Almost all corporations, large banks, insurers, oil companies and so on contribute money to both parties because no matter who wins they still have influence. There is no overall distinction between democrats and republicans in who recieves "corporate" contributions and support. While a few industries may favor one more than the other (example most media companies contribute more to democrats and most energy companies contribute more to republicans ) there is no overall distinction as both parties receive corporate money and grant corporate "favors" in their legislation.

My research has found the above to be generally true. Corporate contributions, indeed, are split between the two major political parties - not equally, of course, but split they are. The thing that is important is which large corporations have the most influence with whatever political party is in the White House and Congress - not how much money is contributed.

Consider the following concept:

Very large corporations may support policies/regulations that goes against its own business interests. Why? Those very policies/regulations may be so onerous that smaller, competitive companies may not survive or be able to effectively compete. Thus, the large corporations benefit from less competition and higer volume of sales. So, no matter what political party is "in power", it is well advised to research the influence that corporations have with that party. It's not the amount of money contributed; it's the influence applied.

The government regulatory agencies are the first place to look for "influence".

Supporting info:

From http://www.polisci.ccsu.edu/trieb/InfluGov.html :

"The regulatory agencies are always the targets of corporate influence. In each area of policy, a triangular relationship exists. The players are the lobbyists and corporations and other private organizations in that area, the congressional committees and subcommittees who make decisions about that subject area, and the executive agencies and regulatory commissions that operate in that field. The connections between these players are as follows: Corporations for whom the lobbyists work give campaign contributions to members of the congressional committees that make decisions about that field. These committees and subcommittees in turn determine the jurisdictions, and sometimes the budgets, of the executive agencies and regulatory commissions that work in the field. Finally, the executive agencies give out government contracts, which can be very lucrative to the industry; while the regulatory commissions adopt regulations, which can be beneficial or restrictive to the industry at hand. If everyone in the triangle cooperates, as they usually do, everyone benefits--that is, everyone except the general public."

Do "We The People" have a view on this subject?

The Economist asked the following question in a survey: "Do corporations have too much say in America's political system?" 88% responded "YES".

And, it is not just the corporations that may benefit from increased government regulations.

This from The Heritage Foundation:

"Most Americans are painfully aware of the amount of taxes they pay. Money deducted from their paychecks, charges added at the cash register and to each restaurant bill, and checks written to the IRS serve as a constant reminder of the price of government programs. Total government revenue and spending is routinely added up and debated. Yet, explicit taxes and spending are only part of the total burden that government places on Americans. The rest comes in the form of hidden taxes imposed by government regulations. These "regulatory taxes" appear on no budget or balance sheet, but are very real--costing Americans an estimated $1 trillion or more each year."

OK, so how many "regulations" are there? And, this does NOT include "Executive Orders" from the White House.

Does our country REALLY need this number of regulations? How many are truly supported by our Constitution? How many of these regulations have been voted on by us (The answer = NONE)? Questions to consider, for sure.


MYTH - Republicans are for the rich and democrats are for the working man.

FACT - According to Forbes magazine of those listing a political affiliation nearly 80% of the richest people in America (billionaires or people with hundreds of millions) are democrats and very liberal in their politics. Both parties have equally over time granted many special tax breaks and incentives to large corporations and wealthy investors but only 1 has placed the bulk of the tax burden on the middle class and that's the democrats. Examples include the fact that nearly all utility taxes, gas taxes, income taxes, sales taxes, alcohol taxes, tobacco taxes, and on and on along with the increases in these taxes have been written by democrats. Billionaires don't care if they pay a little more for gas or other needed items but working people suffer as these taxes go up.

I attempted to verify the above "80%" figure. There are many sources out there. From all that I looked at the numbers ranged from 75%-80% Democrat and 25% - 20% Republican. By and large the Democrats seem to benefit substantially over the Republicans. Why would this be? Maybe it has to do with the first "myth" above.


MYTH - Healthcare, marriage, education, and retirement income are guaranteed rights.

FACT - The US Constitution very clearly and specifically spells out or guaranteed rights and none of the above are listed in it. Every American is guaranteed life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We are guaranteed the right to vote, and to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures . While many things done by the government such as Social Security and Medicare are good programs and without doubt are very beneficial they are not constitutionally required or guaranteed as rights. It is the responsibility of the states to provide things such as education and regulation of marriage, and other issues not given to the federal government by the Constitution.

A very true assessment of the rights in our Constitution.