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Corporate Political Speech, Rent-Seeking, and Political Extortion

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  1. Douglas Levene says:

    All the harm you hypothesize would be be reduced by reducing the scope for rent seeking in the first place. Second order fixes – including highly inefficient and counterproductive ones like authorizing union pension funds to second-guess board decisions on political/lobbying expenses – are not likely to be effective. Union pension funds don’t care about corporate rent seeking. They don’t care if the corporation gets subsidies or tax benefits – those are just as beneficial to the employees as to the residual interest holders. On the contrary, the union activists are opposed to corporations supporting long-run political reform (e.g., better judges or tort reform) that doesn’t have an immediate payoff to the corporation.

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