When liberals wrung their hands over Citizens United (i.e., the Supreme Court free-speech decision that allows private groups to spend unlimited amounts of money trying to influence American politics), I initially pooh-poohed their concern in my blog, but later came to agree that this is an ominous development. A recent article in the NY Times this week further reveals the danger of Citizens United.
The article reports on the Koch brothers’ favorite super-PAC, Americans for Prosperity. This PAC is dominating all other PACs in spending and is becoming super-sophisticated in manipulating the thinking of American voters.
On one hand, the manipulation is scary, but on the other hand it reminds me of when I was growing up there was a great concern that American consumers would soon be under the spell of Madison Avenue manipulators. (See Vance Packard’s “The Hidden Persuaders.”)
We survived Madison Avenue (I think), and maybe we will find a way to survive the Americans for Prosperity.