John Edwards: They aren't going to just give their power away

John Edwards:

This isn't about petty politics or good intentions.

Corporate greed and influence in Washington are stealing our children's future.

The moral test of our generation is whether we're going to allow this broken system to go on without a fight or take on corporate greed and stand up for the middle class and American jobs before it's too late.

They aren't going to just give their power away.

Saving the middle class is going to be an epic battle, and that's a fight I was born for.

http://johnedwards.com/news/press-releases/20071215-fight-ad/
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John Edwards: the Fight

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90kiOdnkw3Y
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So Who's Fighting who, and for What?

The assertion:

Corporate greed and influence in Washington are stealing our children's future.



How so?

Do those "greedy corporations" just stroll into Congress and demand that legislators, just give them concessions?

Well sometimes -- but usually its much more subtle than that. Usually they just hire someone to do this convincing for them.

And those they employ, know the "behind the scenes" working of Washington quite well -- They don't become highly paid Lobbyists for nothing!

Lobbying is hard work! The stress level and the burn out rates in the Lobbying industry is high. Lobbying Firms must resort to snapping up "retiring Congressmen", in a system known as the "revolving door". Sometimes Lobbyists need a break too, and they go back into Politics for a spell (just ask Fred Thompson).


Lobbying Firms also have been known to recruit this country's best talent, in places like Harvard and Princeton. Recent graduates, are probably easier to train, and ready to "go that extra mile" in order to make a name for themselves:

from the Princeton Review Career page:

Lobbyist: Day in the Life

First and foremost, lobbyists must be adept at the art of persuasion, which is the mainstay of their job. They must figure out how to sway politicians to vote on legislation in a way that favors the interest they represent.

When normally opposing groups find a common area of interest and can present a united front they are extremely effective.


Lobbying can be direct or indirect.

Direct lobbying means actually meeting with congressmen and providing them with information pertinent to a bill being voted on. The lobbyist imparts her information with the help of graphs, charts, polls, and reports that she has hunted up or created. Needless to say, this is usually information that the politician might not otherwise have access to, that casts the matter in a light favorable to the interest the lobbyist represents.

Sometimes, lobbyists will even sit down and help a politician draft legislation that is advantageous for their interest.

Maintaining good relations with politicians who can be relied on to support the lobbyist"s interest is key. While lobbyists and their employers cannot themselves make large campaign donations to politicians, they can, and do, raise money from other sources for reelection campaigns.

Indirect lobbying, sometimes referred to as grassroots organizing, is a bit less glamorous. Grassroots lobbyists enlist the help of the community to influence politicians by writing, calling, or demonstrating on the organization"s behalf. This means long hours spent on the phone and writing letters, trying to rouse the community to get involved. These lobbyists also report to politicians about the concerns and reactions they have gotten from community members. Indirect lobbying is also done through the media. Grassroots lobbyists write articles for newspapers and magazines and appear on talk shows to generate interest in and awareness of their issues.

There are no licensing or certification requirements, but lobbyists are required to register with the state and federal governments. Most lobbyists have college degrees. A major in political science, journalism, law, communications, public relations, or economics should stand future lobbyists in good stead.

Many lobbyists also come from careers as legislators, as former politicians often capitalize on their years of government service and their connections to old pals still in office. This is the "revolving door" that recent legislation has begun to regulate.

Indeed, networking is the name of the game in lobbying, where people are hired as much for who they know as what they know. Someone who can schmooze at high levels will start his lobbying career from an accordingly high perch, while others face a long hard climb upwards.

http://www.princetonreview.com/cte/profiles/qualityOfLife.asp?careerID=88
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So how are Corporations, stealing our Children's future?

By sheer numbers and dollars spent, to block legislation, or otherwise, insert clauses to laws, helpful to their Profits Margin -- and little else. That's what unchecked greed gets you, in a Free Market society, where Corporations make up the rules, and the People must take a back seat.

Here's the list of the most influential power-brokers in Washington, and chances are you never even heard of them:

Top Lobbying Firms, 1998-2007

Lobbying firm - Total [retainer fees]

Patton Boggs LLP
$251,392,000

Cassidy & Assoc
$247,275,000

Akin, Gump et al
$205,225,000

Van Scoyoc Assoc
$167,198,000

Barbour, Griffith & Rogers
$126,640,000

Williams & Jensen
$123,404,000

Ernst & Young
$112,871,560

Hogan & Hartson
$109,293,907

Greenberg Traurig LLP
$96,708,249

Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc
$95,637,500

PMA Group
$92,680,132

Preston, Gates et al
$88,720,000

Verner, Liipfert et al
$88,595,000

PriceWaterhouseCoopers
$85,534,945

Holland & Knight
$74,969,544

Alcalde & Fay
$70,290,660

Clark & Weinstock
$69,725,000

Timmons & Co
$69,068,000

PodestaMattoon
$68,955,000

Washington Group
$68,820,000

In addition to campaign contributions to elected officials and candidates, companies, labor unions, and other organizations spend billions of dollars each year to lobby Congress and federal agencies.

Some special interests retain lobbying firms, many of them located along Washington's legendary K Street; others have lobbyists working in-house.

http://www.opensecrets.org/lobbyists/overview.asp?txtindextype=l
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THIS -- is the "Broken System in Washington" that Edwards talks about in that Ad!

This is "the moral test of our generation":

whether we're going to allow this broken system to go on without a fight or take on corporate greed and stand up for the middle class and American jobs before it's too late.


Have you every wondered why we don't have:


- Universal Health Care

- Energy Independence

- Fair tax policy

- Fair trade policy

Well who do you think can afford to hire "enough" Lobbyists to get their way?

How much did you give to Sierra Club last year? What about the Natural Resource Defense Council? Chances are it wasn't enough! Big Oil no doubt gave more to many of these Lobbying Firms -- and yet another year slipped by, with NO REAL ACTION, toward Energy Independence, and stopping Global Warming!

That's just Wrong! This system of Government of our IS Broken!

When are we gonna show a little backbone -- and do something about it? (that is something that Edwards often asks, too)


Those Mega-Million-dollar Lobbying Firms have "built a Wall around Washington"! That Wall keeps out the voices and concerns of ordinary Americans like you and me!

It's time for that Wall to come down!

Part 1

http://youtube.com/watch?v=B6_RBXw6NSw
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Part 2: John Edwards' Speech: DNC Fall Meeting

http://youtube.com/watch?v=vB4CVHTzzvw
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We do not have to settle for a system
that protects Exxon Mobil's Profits --
But does NOT protect the Planet!

History will judge US, on this moment,
in this Election --
Did we grow too cautious for a Campaign Check,
or Did we grow together and Protect our Planet?
...

Part 3

http://youtube.com/watch?v=NpxMHcqqxgg
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Other candidates think that to change the system you got to "work within the system" -- if that approach worked, we'd already have - Universal Health Care, Energy Independence, Fair tax policy, Fair trade policy!

I guess "working the system" really only works for those who can afford to "pay to play"?

Hmmmm ... maybe I should contact MY Lobbyist?

Wait a minute, who's that?

Who's going to Lobby for ME?

Who's going to Fight for MY Issues?



Who's going to "represent WE the People"
in that power-broker circus, called DC?

Who's got the guts, and the experience to take on this "epic fight of a generation"?

That Fighter sounds like John Edwards to me!


The question is, Is America ready to step up, and help fix this Broken System?

If not now, when?

Ever?

Learn more about why Lobbyist's influence MUST be reigned in:

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/11/25/9933/5164/863/414091
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