Sunday, September 27, 2009

Jeremy Scahill: ACORN Got Pennies Compared to War Contracting Firms- Their Crimes Pale in Comparison.

This would actually be funny if it wasn't so sick. The Republicans - aided by many Democrats - have been falling over themselves to de-fund Acorn, a community activist organisation which seeks to help some of America's poorest citizens.

The problem with the bill they have passed, as Rachel Maddow points out, is that it falls foul of the bill of attainder clause in Article one of the US Constitution; a bill of attainder is when a bill is passed which only affects one person or one group of people. You know, sort of like a bill which is entitled the De-Fund ACORN Act.

So, in order to make sure that the De-Fund ACORN Act doesn't run foul of the US Constitution, they are surely going to have to widen it's scope?

For instance, if we can even pretend to be fair about this, you can't decide to de-fund Acorn alone because it has "been indicted for breaking campaign finance laws", or because it has "filed fraudulent paperwork with a federal agency", that would have to become the new rule for everyone.

Rachel runs through the list of Defence contractors who would lose funding if the charges being made against Acorn were ever to be set in stone as reasons to refuse public funds to certain organisations.

Are the Republicans going to insist that the US government de-fund all of these organisations who have fallen foul of the rules in the same way as Acorn has? You bet your bottom dollar they won't.

What is being done to Acorn is an outrage, and they are not being attacked for any of the reasons which we have been given, as there are countless examples of other companies and defence contractors behaving much more egregiously and not facing any calls that they be de-funded.

The right wing are attacking Acorn because Acorn helps the poor and is, therefore, a left wing organisation of old hippies who deserve to be run out of town. The fact that so many Democrats are spineless enough to go along with this makes me shudder. They really ought to grow a backbone.

As Jeremy Scahill points out, the money given to Acorn was pennies compared with the money funnelled towards Defence contractors, but there is no insistence that their funding should be tied to their behaviour in the way which the Republicans are insisting should be the case regarding Acorn.

This is just good old fashioned, shameless, Republican hypocrisy. It's actually embarrassing that the Democrats aren't openly laughing in their faces.

Hat tip to Crooks and Liars.

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