Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 9th Mar 2017 12:53 UTC
Legal

But the mood is different in South Korea these days. There's always been public opposition to corruption and nepotism in the country's chaebol conglomerates, but the country has never seen anything like the massive protests that swept the streets last year and helped drive President Park's approval rating down to four percent. In a climate like this, where widespread outrage can lead to the impeachment of a president, even a Samsung chairman might have reason to worry.

When a Korean, Chinese, African, or South-American man gives money to politicians in exchange for favours, we call it corruption. When a western man gives money to politicians in exchange for favours, we call it lobbying.

Language shapes perception.

Order by: Score:
No
by abraxas on Thu 9th Mar 2017 13:02 UTC
abraxas
Member since:
2005-07-07

It's still called corruption. The problem in the US at least is that there is a very strict standard for what is considered "quid pro quo". The money has to be given for a specific reason like "I donate to your campaign if you promise to vote down this tax bill". Getting money from lobbyists and then voting with their interests is not considered quid pro quo without a specific agreement in place and of course known to authorities.

Reply Score: 6

Corruption/Capitalism/Fairness
by mmrezaie on Thu 9th Mar 2017 13:06 UTC
mmrezaie
Member since:
2006-05-09

Lobbying is losing its appeal and I do not think it can continue being like this unless west is going to be fine with being less and less fair in all the castes of the society. Unfortunately, if the current trend in US and EU and rise of populism is going to gain momentum we are not going to solve it soon anyway. I wonder when we look at it and say "remember when we came with an idea of lobbying, well now the system can have a broader view on those matters than a small number of massive companies. So we will trust our studies than suggestions coming from those businesses". Is it just a fantasy?

Reply Score: 2

osvil
Member since:
2012-10-25

I think it is naive to consider that corruption in the west (I assume you refer to North America and Europe) is just the lobbying.

There is plenty of old-fashioned corruption where contracts are just sold in exchange for money that gets into someone pocket. In a way, I'd say lobbying and corruption are a bit different. Lobbying tries to game the rule as it is being written, while corruption games how the rule is executed. But that's just my opinion and I am not an expert in this kind of stuff.

Reply Score: 5

Hmm?
by Megol on Thu 9th Mar 2017 14:12 UTC
Megol
Member since:
2011-04-11

Naïve... Lobbying is when a group try to influence politics by presenting a case for whatever they promote (that includes ordinary people e.g. wanting to reduce environmental impact from some industry). Bribery is paying someone to ensure favorable treatment.

Lobbying is lobbying and bribery is bribery - and language doesn't change that.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Hmm?
by Vanders on Thu 9th Mar 2017 15:08 UTC in reply to "Hmm?"
Vanders Member since:
2005-07-06

Naïve... Lobbying is when a group try to influence politics by presenting a case for whatever they promote

If you don't think that "lobbying" tends to include "donating" money to politicians then you're the naïve one here.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Hmm?
by Delgarde on Thu 9th Mar 2017 21:18 UTC in reply to "RE: Hmm?"
Delgarde Member since:
2008-08-19

If you don't think that "lobbying" tends to include "donating" money to politicians then you're the naïve one here.


That's not what he said, though. Lobbying and bribing *are* different things... the problem is that they often go together, bribery being used to add weight to the lobbying.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Hmm?
by gan17 on Fri 10th Mar 2017 19:27 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Hmm?"
gan17 Member since:
2008-06-03

Nah, they're the same. Lobbying is only legal because the ones taking the bribes are the ones making the laws.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Hmm?
by galvanash on Thu 9th Mar 2017 21:24 UTC in reply to "RE: Hmm?"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

If you don't think that "lobbying" tends to include "donating" money to politicians then you're the naïve one here.


I think the point is that you can lobby a politician without bribing them (really, you can - it happens all the time).

The fact that you can also bribe them has nothing to do with lobbying.

What is sad is that adding bribery to lobbying make it drastically more effective...

Edited 2017-03-09 21:27 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Sigh.
by grat on Thu 9th Mar 2017 19:29 UTC
grat
Member since:
2006-02-02

When a western man gives money to politicians in exchange for favours, we call it lobbying.


You might.

The rest of us call it what it is-- It's still bribery. Lobbying is essentially group advocacy-- it's essentially advertising targeting legislative bodies on behalf of constituent groups.

Yes, influence peddling for cash / favors happens. No, it's not lobbying, it's bribery, and is illegal.

Occasionally, it even gets prosecuted.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Sigh.
by shotsman on Thu 9th Mar 2017 19:46 UTC in reply to "Sigh."
shotsman Member since:
2005-07-22

It seems to me that most US Politicians would never get elected without the huge sums of money cough, cough, donated to a candidates campaign. Of course there is some horse trading, you get me elected and when I'm in power I'll do this for you.
Corruption? what corruption? I don't see no corruption...

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Sigh.
by grat on Sat 11th Mar 2017 04:30 UTC in reply to "RE: Sigh."
grat Member since:
2006-02-02

But that isn't lobbying. It's (in theory) campaign finance, and it's why Citizen's United was such a terrible ruling.

Quid pro quo that leads to political favors isn't lobbying. It's not campaign finance. It's BRIBERY.

Reply Score: 2

No
by galvanash on Thu 9th Mar 2017 21:14 UTC
galvanash
Member since:
2006-01-25

There is a huge distinction between lobbying and bribery, unfortunately it just doesn't really exist in practice.

Lobbying is simply trying to influence and guide politicians. Not to be too crass, but politicians are generally pretty stupid - they desperately need to be influenced and guided... People that are really good at convincing the masses that they would be good at a job are usually, in practice, really bad at it. Most politicians skill sets lie in getting elected, not actually governing.

Lobbying got homosexuals marriage rights. It got us woman's suffrage. It got us desegregation. It accomplished lots of good things. Yelling at your congressman is lobbying, marching on Washington is lobbying. Etc. etc. Outlawing people from forming groups with other like minded people to influence politicians would be a horrible idea.

The point is lobbying, in the strictest sense, has nothing to do with money, it is about persuasion. The people hold more power over politicians than simply the vote - they don't get a free pass to do whatever they want once elected... Lobbying both guides policy and keeps them in check.

The real problem is not that lobbying exists, its that people with money have more power than other people... How do you fix that? If you could somehow take a magic wand and remove money from politics (how I don't know), it would be replaced with favors, jobs for the wife, golden parachutes after leaving office, etc. etc. People with money would just use money to figure out other ways to exert the power money gives them...

Point is people with money have more power. That is just kind of a fact of life. I agree, in practice, lobbying kind of sucks and most of the time it is tantamount to bribery - but getting rid of it as a tool won't change anything (and would do more harm than good).

Reply Score: 4

RE: No
by fretinator on Thu 9th Mar 2017 21:25 UTC in reply to "No"
fretinator Member since:
2005-07-06

It's not hard.

1. Companies, organizations can't donate to campaigns.
2. Limit individual donations to $1000 (or something in that ball-park).

This still leaves room for real lobbying - promoting issues, etc. But it would instantly transform politics in America. Will it happen...no!

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: No
by galvanash on Thu 9th Mar 2017 21:38 UTC in reply to "RE: No"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

It's not hard.

1. Companies, organizations can't donate to campaigns.
2. Limit individual donations to $1000 (or something in that ball-park).


Read my post again... I can think of hundreds of ways, using money, to completely bypass those rules. Off the top of my head:

1. Ill hire your wife, kid, mother in law, whatever. Ill give them a "job" doing nothing and making lots of bank.

2. Ill promise to give you money (or whatever) after you leave office.

3. Do what already happens now. Just spend the money yourself on an "issue" and campaign directly to push voters towards the candidate that is aligned on that issue. It doesn't involve any money going to the campaign at all - no donations whatsoever. Ironically, this is far more effective and a bigger problem than donations themselves (i.e. Super PACs).

4. The donation limit right now is $5000, not far from your ball park to be honest. Hillary Clintons average donation was only $44. Your fixing a problem that doesn't exist here... The real problem is under the table stuff (like I mentioned above).

There are lots of variations of the above, none of which your law would do anything about.

Edited 2017-03-09 21:43 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: No
by fretinator on Fri 10th Mar 2017 00:42 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: No"
fretinator Member since:
2005-07-06

I was going to say something about other ways to bribe influence, but really I think there should just be enforcement - if you give jobs, or anything else similar, you go to jail. Just like in South Korea, if you show you mean it, I think most companies would dial it back.

Reply Score: 3

RE: No
by Trenien on Fri 10th Mar 2017 07:38 UTC in reply to "No"
Trenien Member since:
2007-10-11

Well, I haven't got the perfect answer, but I do have a couple of things that would be a step in the right direction:
- Make politicians liable for whatever they've done from day one of them being elected and (this is important) with no statute of limitation. As an added bonus, make any and all assets of said politician and his relatives fair game if it comes to pay penalties (and of course, jail time must be involved, along the lines of decades)
- There must always be an audit of what they've done right at the end of their mandate, and probably another one 5-10 years later
- common citizens can call for an impeachment/audit/arrest with, let's say around 10% of the electorate (this should vote on in a referendum, of course).

It wouldn't solve all problems, but it would be a nice few steps in the right direction

Reply Score: 2

Hurting, but there is some truth there...
by dionicio on Thu 9th Mar 2017 21:41 UTC
dionicio
Member since:
2006-07-12

Thom. On the other side, Politics is resource expensive. Even our 'Independent' candidates are backed by 'Interest' Money. The Less Empowered and Under-monetized Our fellow citizens, The easier for 'Lobby' Teams.

Reply Score: 2