Aug 23, 2014
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The world according to the U.S. Supreme Court
'Spending large sums of money in connection with elections... Does not give rise to quid pro quo corruption.' -McCutchen v Rec
Man: Hi I'm a billionaire. Here is a large sum of money for which I expect nothing in return. Rat: I could not give you anything in return, as that would be quid pro quo corruption. 
Man: Of course. As an aside, sir, there is a bill before you now that I am very much against.
Rat: I see. I will consider your position without regard to the limitless sums you can now hand out. Next.
Man 2: Hello, sir, I'm Joe nobody. I have no cash to give you, but I would really like you to vote for the bill that is before you now.
Rat: I see. Well, I will give your position the exact same consideration I will give the man who just singlehandedly funded my entire campaign.
Man 2: Thank you, honest congressman.
Rat: Thank you, valued constituent. 
That settled, they all rode away on unicorns to Candyland.
Pig: So money doesn't influence anyone!
Rat: Nope. Now have a gumdrop from the gumdrop tree.
Aug 25, 2014
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    Sherlock Watson  over 3 years ago

    Stephan Pastis is the master of sarcastic humor.

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    Three Steps Over Japan  over 3 years ago

    Stephan Pastis is a former lawyer. Sarcastic humor comes with the job.

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    reatta45  over 3 years ago

    LOVE the accurate political quips… Just wish more people could understand how this works.

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    socalvillaguy GC Insider over 3 years ago

    Love it!

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    Alexikakos  over 3 years ago

    Here’s Harry McClintock’s take on paradise…

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    Darsan54 GC Insider over 3 years ago

    One of the better political commentaries I have seen in recent memory.

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    Sisyphos  over 3 years ago

    You can take the Cartoon-Boy out of the bar, but you can’t take the bar out of Cartoon-Boy. I want some gumdrops! Or a unicorn! If I don’t get them, I may sue you for fraud, Cartoon-Boy!

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    Arianne  over 3 years ago

    Look closely at panels 3 and 5 – our two faced congressional rat is showing his true nature. If you cover up his left half, you sort of see a profile on the right. Nicely done, Stephan!

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    Arianne  over 3 years ago

    If I listen long enough to you I’d find the way to believe that it’s all true Knowing that you lied straight face while I cried

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    doublepaw  over 3 years ago

    Seems like for once Pastis took the other non-conservative side with his political statements.

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    Newrulz1951  over 3 years ago

    Too bad that this wasn’t available to show the goofballs on the SCOTUS before the 5 idiots make their stupid decision on Citizens United.

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    Jeff0811  over 3 years ago

    A word on the comic itself, Money influences me to get up and go to work every business day, it influences lawyers to be lawyers, and then some of those lawyers to run for political office. For a politician to say money doesn’t influence people by someone who was influenced by money to hold political office is the height of hypocrisy.

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    Already Fuzzy  over 3 years ago

    Best. Pearls Before Swine. Ever

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    gzitver  over 3 years ago

    Rat for Congress!

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    Nighthawks GC Insider over 3 years ago

    the rats are already there, gerrymandered to stay there, no matter what

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    OldestandWisest  over 3 years ago

    Yeah, freedom of speech is SO overrated, government really need to restrict it more. After all, they’re the government and they’re here to help us!

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    mentor397  over 3 years ago

    This is totally wrong. Gumdrops come from bushes, not trees.

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    puddlesplatt  over 3 years ago

    and there are no cats in America!

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    Dianne Lee GC Insider over 3 years ago
    The only thing that is going to save the Middle Class is the Middle Class. We are the 99%—- that means we have the votes to elect people who will actually represent middle class workers and provide a safety net for those who are trying to get into the middle class.We all need to know who is supporting the candidates. That is who they will be working for. They have no choice if they want to stay in office. You have to do the bidding of whoever is paying your way, just the same as we all do in our jobs. So, before going to vote, look it up on the internet. Open Secrets is a good site, but there are plenty.If the candidate is getting their money from small donors or from unions, they are going to be working for middle class working people. If their donations are from corporations or from 1%ers, that’s who their votes are going to be working for. They are not going to go against them and do anything to help the middle class.It would be political suicide.
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    adssteve  over 3 years ago

    Brilliant. Period.

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    oldschool434  over 3 years ago

    Bring back the crocs

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    Queen of America GC Insider over 3 years ago

    The strip should be posted on every single politicians’ office wall.

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    Godfreydaniel  over 3 years ago

    IF a corporation is a person, then it must necessarily have multiple personality disorder!

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    Oxnate  over 3 years ago

    I wish they’d call a spade a spade and just rename ‘campaign contributions’, bribes.

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    John Czach GC Insider over 3 years ago

    So ? you join a like minded pac and match the fat cat. and there’s no fatter cats than unions with coerced dues. Of,course, the fallacy of this strip is that extrapolating the logic would mean that there is never any elected official you agree with

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    A_NY_Outlaw  over 3 years ago

    Rat the Politician. There’s a marriage made in heaven.

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    bshamblin79  over 3 years ago

    I knew Candyland was real!

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    Dapperdan61  GC Insider over 3 years ago

    Today’s comic should be put in every elected officials office. This strip speaks volumes about the influence money has on what drives legislation. Regardless of party affiliation all politicians are beholden to those who donate to their campaigns.

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    Timothy Madigan GC Insider over 3 years ago


    McCutheon v. FEC wasnt about per-candidate spending limits, which HAVE been upheld but the limits on spending across candidates’re still restricted on how much you can give but not how many you can give to

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    YatInExile GC Insider over 3 years ago

    It’s not often that I laugh at the first panel of a strip.

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    cactusjack99 GC Insider over 3 years ago

    Good one Steve, you nailed it!

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    Ermine Notyours  over 3 years ago

    The main expense of political campaigns is television advertising. Commercially-supported television seems to be declining, so there’s hope. If commercial television declines to a low enough levels, politicians won’t be able to accept large “campaign contributions” with a straight face, but I may not live long enough to see that day. Local news seems to be doing okay, so it may take a while.One time when I was forced to watch local news at work, I saw a pro-candidate X ad, followed by an anti-candidate X ad followed by a pro-candidate X’s opponent ad. I was getting whiplash from all these messages. It’s no surprise that political ads contribute so much to local television and radio stations, but it’s not a sustainable model.

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    steverinoCT  over 3 years ago

    Pastis shoulfd credit TBogg:Your Mumia Sweatshirt Won’t Get You Into Heaven Anymore

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    Chrisstopher  over 3 years ago

    Unfortunately, I don’t think It’s simplified enough for most people to understand.

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    Nairebis  over 3 years ago

    While I agree with the idea that money is corrupting, it’s worth giving the additional context of the Supreme Court’s ruling. There is a reason for what they said:

    “The line between quid pro quo corruption and general influence must be respected in order to safeguard basic First Amendment rights, and the Court must err on the side of protecting political speech rather than suppressing it.”

    So the point isn’t that the Supreme Court believes money doesn’t influence politicians, it’s that the Supreme Court gives a lot of weight to not suppressing the freedom of speech of the people.

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    WineStar GC Insider over 3 years ago

    Follow the money.

    Spot on & well done, SP!

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    A_NY_Outlaw  over 3 years ago

    You can see by the thread that Pastis has stirred up trouble! ;-)

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    Robert Pratt GC Insider over 3 years ago

    No different than the squeaky wheel getting the grease. It’s all a form of speech. The rich guy, or group of people incorporate, have as much right to attempt to influence their elected representatives as anyone else.

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    jbmlaw01  over 3 years ago

    Leftists believe the first amendment allows congress to constrict freedom of speech – reading difficulty I suppose. There is an intelligent alternative – vote against people who support stupid intrusions on your freedom.

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    Saddenedby GC Insider over 3 years ago

    this strip is like going to a impressionistic modern day art gallery. everybody sees what they want to see and interprets it the way they wish. so this makes an excellent strip for people to ‘discuss’. however my winged unicorn is calling and i’ve had too many gumdrops so i am off to purchase a law that i can call my own and make everybody else bow down and obey that law – because it is all about the power – not the law – UP UP and AWAY! just keep electing them and others will keep buying them and we will all be flying unicorns and eating gumdrops in a far off land of Utopia!!!

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    adamsdc  over 3 years ago

    Money and politics go hand in hand. The campaign laws limiting money also limit speech. The Supremes have decided that unions and corporations have equal rights to speech, and thus contributions, to any cause their shareholders or union members support. Does this buy influence? You bet. Just look at the rulings from the leftists who control the NLRB and NMB appointed by Obama after they contributed billions to elect him. I’m glad Pastis has shown this to be the truth in this strip, although it should be noticed that he talks about “billionaires” which would include the unions who have spent billions to elect their candidates.

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    Joy Sabl GC Insider over 3 years ago

    Union leadership is elected, and union positions are also put to a vote of the membership—as is whether or not to donate to candidates, vs focusing on public education, issues activism, etc. Thus it’s hard to argue that union contributions are exactly equivalent to the donation of a single multimillionaire (even if the size of the donations may be comparable).

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    trm  over 3 years ago

    Thereby proving once again that inside every leftist is a totalitarian screaming to get out.

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    Carl Rennhack GC Insider over 3 years ago

    Rat as a Congressman proves that, if PRO is the opposite of CON, the opposite of PROgress just has to be…

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    adamsdc  over 3 years ago

    I suspect the reason there are no bankers in jail is that they give far more money to the Dems than the Pubs. Can’t get any money from your sponsor when he’s in the clink. But money buys votes, even if the money comes from unions whose members may be forced to join to keep a job, or a leftist billionaire who made his money polluting the climate like Steyer.

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    mjb515  over 3 years ago

    Obviously, the SCOTUS decision flies in the face of that great principle of American jurisprudence “guilty until proven innocent”.

    Due to the obvious baleful influence of cartoonists over politics much greater than the “Joe Nobodys” of this great nation, Cartoon Syndicates are limited to spending $250 per week in total to produce a single comic strip title. After all, “money is not speech”.

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    cupertino jay  over 3 years ago

    too long dint read. um, too many comments to read neither.

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    barister  over 3 years ago

    Let them eat cake.

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    Brass Orchid GC Insider over 3 years ago

    Specifically, corporations are representative of people.So are Unions, Advocacy Groups, Special interests of all stripes, and the stray Citizens Grass Roots Collective. But why do people hate collectives so much if they feel that we need one Collective to Rule Them All?If that is the Imp of the Perverse, does that make Joe Carroll from The Following a caricature of Joe Biden?

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    claire de la lune.  over 3 years ago

    This is the second political strip this month.

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    claire de la lune.  over 3 years ago

    However, once I get this, this will probably be the best strip of the month.

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    Ermine Notyours  14 days ago

    Rat used to be a congressman? I guess he has more political experience than the current real-world president.

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