Lobbying

What is the problem with these so-called ‘campaign finance reforms’?

The so-called “campaign finance” reforms rather than removing the cause of the problem of the buying and selling of political favors magnify the problem, by expanding the politician’s powers to control its citizens. 

These so-called “reforms” will reinforce the real cause of the problem — the power of politicians to grant favors — by giving government officials increased powers, which it should not possess. Examples of such rights-violating powers include censorship of speech by banning ‘political advertising’, and giving politicians the power to use tax funds to pay for their campaigns!

What is the essential argument made by advocates of campaign finance reform?

The argument made by advocates of campaign finance reform is that noble politicians are corrupted by ‘special interests’ who seek to buy favors through ‘lobbying’ and providing campaign financing. The government should restrict or eliminate such ‘financing’, and the state should finance all campaigns.

What is the cause of the buying and selling of favors?

The real problem is not businessmen bribing government officials. The real cause of the problem is that businessmen, and other ‘interest groups’, are forced to pay extortion money to government officials, i.e., blood money in the literal sense of the term, as these same politicians control the police and courts through the creation of regulations.

The problem is that even legitimate businesses must ‘purchase’ their freedom through genuflecting to the little Caesars who hold a noose of non-objective laws and regulations around their necks. The problem is that government vampires have a ‘power’ that they can sell–a power that they should not possess in the first place–the power to legally bleed private citizens dry.

What is the solution to the buying and selling of political favors?

The government should not decide what services and products businesses can offer and what markets they can enter. These decisions should be left to producers and consumers. Under laissez-faire, there would be no buying of favors from politicians because politicians would not have any favors to offer.

All these laws would be impossible under capitalism, since each one of them is a violation of individual rights: preventing a group of businessmen to enter a market violates their right to liberty; taxing one business more then another violates the principle of equal treatment under government; subsidizing one business–with the tax money taken from the other–is a violation of the second’s right to property, etc.

Under capitalism, the only laws that a politician may pass are those that equally protect the rights of all its citizens, i.e., without violating the rights of any of them.

What about the ‘public interest’?

The only common interests amongst all human beings are the equal protection of individual rights. No rational individual wants to have their rights violated; all rational individuals wish to be left free to enter and compete in any market they choose to; all rational individuals wish not to have their property looted from them. This is the only proper meaning of the “public interest”: the interests that all rational individuals have in common.

What statists mean by the “public interest” is the unequal protection of rights, by granting government privileges to one group (who is represents the “public”) at the expense of another group (who is not the “public” and left disenfranchised).

The statist version of the “public interest” is a myth. Outside the equal protection of individual rights, there are only the social and economic interests of various individuals. Any attempt by the government to implement the ‘public interest’ by the violation of individual rights, will lead to a civil-war of lobbying pressure groups.