The Errington Thompson Show 1-23-10

Errington talks with two great guests on this show. The first is Linda Monk, constitutional scholar and author of The Words We Live By, who tries to make sense for us the very complicated Supreme Court decision regarding corporations. In what Ms Monk calls an “astounding example of judicial activism,” corporations have been deemed to have the same rights to free speech that individual Americans enjoy. Given that they retain limited liability, however, the rights of corporations become “Super Rights.” An individual’s liability would limit defamatory claims… not so for a corporation’s campaign ad! What to do? Monk supports a constitutional amendment prohibiting for-profit companies’ participation in elections. Such an endeavor would be, in Monk’s words, “a hallmark of the new populist movement.” I like it.

Errington’s second guest is Patrick Fitzsimmons, the regional executive director of the Red Cross for western North Carolina. Mr. Fitzsimmons explains some of the ways our donations make it to help in Haiti. At least three million of Haiti’s 10 million citizens have been immediately affected by last month’s massive earthquake. That’s one third of the population! Stepping up to the challenges like the decimated infrastructure, debilitated power grid, the lack of water and gasoline, the Red Cross is coming to the rescue the best they can. They’re operating hospitals and first aid and helping to distribute food, water, blood products and other emergency supplies. Remember, 91 cents of every dollar gets directly to those who need it after negligible but necessary administrative costs.

Both of these issues spark insightful debate. Now that’s progressive radio!

0 Responses

  1. ECT: An individual’s liability would limit defamatory claims… not so for a corporation’s campaign ad!
    Some  clarification please.  Does the limited liability refer to campaign speech,   whether paid for by an individual or a corporation?  Generally politicians have an extremely hard time suing for liable.  
    Or, does the limited liability refer to specifically to a corporation.  Is Ms. Monk saying that a corporation can’t be sued for liable?

  2. TCB –

    Listen to the podcast. Tell me what you think. I think that should answer your question.

    BTW, I spent the weekend with ECB. It was really fun. We talked aobut you!!

    Be Well my friend.

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Errington C. Thompson, MD

Dr. Thompson is a surgeon, scholar, full-time sports fan and part-time political activist. He is active in a number of community projects and initiatives. Through medicine, he strives to improve the physical health of all he treats.


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