Bob Geiger of Democrats.Com has another excellent article on the Estate Tax cut, minimum wage bill. Packed into the bill, which is already a huge giveaway to the rich (worth almost $100 million to Paris Hilton, for example) is a measure overrding state laws in seven states allowing employers with employees who get tips, to lower their wages and count the tips towards the minimum wage.
Bob took the time out to go to Open Secrets and see how the National Restaurant Assocation spends its lobbying money:
Anyone surprised? The correlation between what lobbyists spend and the bills that get passed goes beyond “coincidence.” The US, at the current time, has a system of legal bribery and the cost is a lot greater than just this bill – it’s the reason why you have no universal healthcare, for example, when the majority of Americans support it. It’s the reason why the oil companies got their subsidies extended this year, even though they’re making record profits.
Businesses don’t give money to political candidates out of some sweet patriotic civic duty. They do it because they know the return on investment is very, very good. And as long as bribery is legal in the US, tolerated and encouraged, the system will continue to work for those with the money to buy it, and against those without it.