Viewpoint

Vote yet to resolution to overturn Citizen’s United

The mass exploitation of our fellow man didn’t end in America with the abolition of the auction block in 1865 — there will always be those who suffer no moral qualms over unduly profiting from the labor of others while simultaneously wreaking havoc in their lives.

Post-slavery, the industrial age brought new opportunities for extraction from the populace: poor working conditions, long hours, and control of financing and housing characterized this period. Eventually, these abuses precipitated widespread strikes, culminating in reforms in the early 1900’s that restored equity and improved the lives of the working class.

But these reforms were not to remain forever — greed does not readily tolerate restraint. Well-orchestrated efforts by corporations and the wealthy sought to restrict workers’ rights, deregulate the entire financial sector, and create trade agreements which favored bottom lines over societal responsibility.

Fast forward to 2014. Corporations, realizing record profits in the U.S., relocate overseas, exploiting even cheaper labor where wages, working conditions, and environmental concerns go unregulated — their obscene profits now sheltered in offshore accounts. Here, factories close, leaving communities devastated. Financial sectors get massive government bailouts while their CEOs award themselves multimillion-dollar bonuses. Our neighbors struggle to find work and lose their homes and retirements, all because of the financial manipulations — in reality outright theft — of avaricious and unscrupulous Wall Street insiders.

Today, unregulated corporate and wealthy donor money controls both political parties and the national agenda, and the American people suffer as a result.

At many March Town Meetings, New Hampshire residents may now vote to reverse this situation with a resolution to amend the constitution and overturn the Supreme Court’s “Citizens United’’ decision which allowed corporations to buy our democracy. If a resolution is on your Town’s agenda, please vote yes.

Henri Vaillancourt lives in Greenville.

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