Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Senator Ellis is at it again.

On the way home from taking Claudia to work I turned on WI(m)P (WIsconsin (m) Public Radio) Radio's Ideas network (FM 88.1 in my area) and they were visiting with Jay Hecht executive director of Wisconsin's Common Cause. As you may know Common Cause loves the idea of Senator Ellis' pet project: Campaign Finance Reform.

Six others co-introduced and an additional five are co-sponsoring SB-46 the campaign finance bill that is currently in play. I downloaded the text of the bill (which I assume is its current incarnation) and it is a whopping 86 pages long! It is as one would expect full of references to other portions of state law and it would be quite an effort to fully dissect the bill.

I am generally opposed to campaign finance reform because it is often aimed at moving our system closer to publicly financed campaigns. This should scare anyone because it essentially puts government in charge of who does and who does not run for office. The people of Iran know how that works.

I know, our legislators can write the laws so that does not happen. However, anyone who thinks that publicly financed campaigns will not be used to control who runs for office is fooling themselves. Our elected officials like everyone else are self-interested (even if their aims are noble, they still want their aims to succeed) and will look to use these laws as a means to get themselves re-elected. Remember our system is based upon a HEALTHY MISTRUST of those in government.

From my discussions with Senator Ellis his rationale is to squelch the teacher's union. This is a gross affront to our system of government. As much as I detest the Teacher's Industrial Complex (TIC) they have every right to organize and promote their agenda and candidates friendly to their cause.

This is the thing people do not understand. Our constitution is set up so that no one special interest is favored. It is up to special interests to get their views accepted. This is one area of thought where I agree 100% with Ayn Rand. What is a group? A group is a collection of individuals who work together for common cause. So when you start repressing one group or the other you are not repressing some abstract piece of paper in an office somewhere but you are repressing real people.

If you repress the TIC then you repress NRA. If you repress the NRA then you repress NOW.

This is why I suspect many of my fellow conservatives are quick to label Senator Ellis as a RINO.