Shakespeare, Money and Politics

Shakespeare quote, … And though authority be a stubborn bear, yet he is oft led by the nose with gold.“… And though authority be a stubborn
bear, yet he is oft led by the nose with gold.”

Winter’s Tale act 4, sc. 3

 

Following is the transcription of a message left on the telephone recorder of a lobbyist by a prominent US Congresswoman.
For our international visitors, the matter is perfectly legal. A summary of the message is, send me money or next time you wish me to pass a law or promote an initiative, development, contract etc. that favors you (or your master), you know what to expect.

Though I do not have immediate data at hand, it is said that a congressperson must spend a good portion of the day soliciting contributions, as in this instance. What is more unusual here is that the message was left on the recorder.

Needless to say, this is why social reforms have become essentially impossible. Any self-respecting lobbyist would only want initiatives and laws that benefit himself.

This on the strength of a principle of neo-liberal democracy, which is as credible as the dogma of the immaculate conception – what is good to me is good to others.

War is the common harvest of all those who participate in the division and expenditure of public money.  It is the art of conquering at home. The object of it is an increase in revenue (for the warmongers and their lobbyists). And as revenue can only be increased  by taxes or by their redistribution (in favor of the warmongers), a pretense must be found for either.

quote
This is Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton.

I noticed that you have given to other colleagues on the transportation and infrastructure committee. I am a senior member 20 year veteran, a 20 year veteran and I am  chair of the economic development, public building and emergency management in the United States.

I was frankly surprised to see that we don’t have a record so far as I can tell of your having given to me despite my long and deep work in the committee and subcommittee. In fact my major work has been in your sector. I am simply candidly calling to ask for a contribution.

As senior member of the committee and subcommittee chair we have obligations to raise funds. And I think it must have been me who hadn’t done frankly my home work and asked for a contribution earlier.

So I am trying to make up for it by asking for one now – when we particularly need contributions, particularly those of us who have the seniority and the chairmanships and are in a position to raise the funds.

I will send you a following note with an appreciation for hearing me up.
unquote

In the play. The clown confers with the sly Autolycus on how to get some concessions from the authority.

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  • Mark E.

    I like the Shakespeare quotations you use, and the current events you tie them to. Keep up the good work.