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back to article Obama refuses to respond to MPAA bribery claim petition

The White House has said it won’t be responding to a petition calling for an investigation into whether comments by MPAA head Chris Dodd about paying for political support constituted an admission of bribery. Shortly after SOPA and PIPA were kicked into the long grass by nervous legislators, Dodd - himself a former senator – …

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Silver badge
Unhappy

You have to admit...

That the guy who worded that "get out" clause used a small word to good effect.

Gotta cover all the bases, eh chaps?

If it hurts, don't poke it!

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Bronze badge
Childcatcher

Having signed the petition, I received a copy of that email

President Obama has been something of a disappointment. The changes are coming, whether or not he wants to get involved. I even believe that the changes will be for the better--but that's only on the long-term average.

In the short term, where we live, right now the important change is that Chris Dodd used to be a good guy and he's changed into the usual form of political scum. I haven't yet decided whether or not Obama has changed for the worst. Maybe he's just like all of the professional politicians (AKA massive liars), and there was just some confusion because he hadn't been a politician for long enough and because he's a much more skilled liar than Mitt Romney.

Really? Is that the choice Americans will face this November? I wouldn't buy a vacuum cleaner from Romney.

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Devil

White house is "not commenting"

This does not mean that nothing is done here. You are drawing too many conjectures.

In any case - first and foremost, the Media shall never be defeated in a trial by Media. So if he wants to do something here not answering the petition is the right choice. That does not mean it was not passed to some small clerk in the IRS to check Dodd's taxes (Al Capone style).

As far as him changing or not, I do not think he changed. He continues to be very non-American in his posture and attitude. He talks little, waits for the right moment instead of going trigger happy with all guns blazing and uses an amount of power that guarantees to get the job done.

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Silver badge

"Maybe he's just like all of the professional politicians (AKA massive liars)"

Yep, that's pretty much it. How many of his promises did he keep again? Something about a military base, and the Defense Authorization Bill...?

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Anonymous Coward

What happened to Ron Paul?

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"He talks little"

Obama? Talks little?

...

BWAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!

All he does is talk, because talking is all he's got.

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Linux

Why...oh why...

Do the American people pigeon-hole themselves between two political parties. Why not shift your collective support to some of the independents. Obama is a retard. Romney is well he is breathing I really have nothing good to say about his political ability. So the only logical option for me would be to look at some of the independents...You want positive change...find a politician who will implement the peoples vision not that of corporate interests or that of the entertainment industry. I promise you you will not find that person in either Obama or Romney.

the Penguin because the techies realized long-ago that limiting yourself to what others thought you should do was the wrong approach to innovation and success.

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Pirate

Such common sense will not be tolerated, you must be a commie!!

The 'system' here is simple, companies (purely out of the goodness of their hearts you understand) contribute huge sums of money, directly and indirectly, to candidates campaigns. Candidates use this money to lie on TV. Way too many people have never thought about anything more complicated than "would you like fries with that?" and believe everything they see and hear on TV. They vote for the person whose lies they have heard the most as any lie repeated often enough must be the truth! After all, it was on TV, it must be the truth.

The candidate who has the most money, therefore the most airtime gets elected and completely coincidentally ensures companies and wealthy individuals who contributed to their campaign get preferential treatment / favours / tax breaks etc.

For as long as individuals and companies are allowed to contribute anything more than token amounts towards campaigns (and I don't care what you say, superpacs as politicians pimp proxies) the system will be corrupt to the core.

Find a politician who hasn't been bought, isn't buggering everything in sight and talks sense and I'll vote for them. Good bleeding luck, it will be like finding a virgin over 12 in Wythenshawe.

(oh and for the record, the same goes for a great many countries, the US is not alone in having a fundamentally flawed system and I also believe that as flawed as the system is the UK and USA etc it is infinitely better than life under the likes of Saddam et al).

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Mushroom

This is why...

L1feless,

It's because we are no longer in control of the election process. Media is king here and the media has an agenda, push their guy and destroy all opposition. So anyone who could actually help fix this mess (like the aforementioned Ron Paul) gets discredited, minimized, and ignored while their puppets get glorified and praised. The worst thing is that all of that is only so that when the computerized voting machines we were suckered into accepting spit out the latest crap "winner" everyone just says "yeah, judging by what I saw on TV I figured he was gonna win". BTW, our "representatives" pushed this computerized voting system through without really asking the "people" what we thought of it.

If you're interested in seeing what has happened to our election system, watch the HBO documentary "Hacking America". It's funny how most people are smart enough to realize online casinos can't be trusted (<push button> "did I win?" - "No. you lost" <deduct money>) but they never think twice about letting an unmonitored, unregulated system of computers designed by Haliburton subsidiaries tally votes. Sigh. We deserve the fate befalling us (see also The Fall of the Roman Empire).

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Silver badge
Stop

It wouldn't matter

The US Attorneys who would have investigated this are a wholly owned subsidiary of the Big Media lobby. Their appointments were bought and paid for. There is no danger they might find corruption here. The USA: the best government money can buy.

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Too busy

Eric Holder is too busy selling guns illegally, having them transported to Mexico so that they can be used against border agents.

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Anonymous Coward

Who cares ?

The point was made. Let a million petitions bloom.

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Pirate

Like father, like son?

His father was corrupt, the first US Senator censured since McCarthy. It prompted a satirical mock movie poster at the time, showing Adam Clayton Powell, and titled "Dodd is My Co-Pirate."

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Silver badge
FAIL

Reword the petition, and start again...

Easy to fix.

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Flame

Forget going after DODD, go after the legislation

I think you mean politicians are easy to fix. Any new petition that goes after Dodd personally (which doesn't ruffle too many feathers) will probably look a bit toothless. Perhaps a better petition would be this one:

Repeal the DCMA and it's related industry sponsored sister acts and replace it with a more responsible consenus-based system for addressing copyright issues. Such a system would be based on an industry-wide consultation which includes all stake-holders, i.e: search engine companies, cloud companies, media companies, entertainment companies, internet users, etc.

Of course, the petitioners (and any resulting consortium that might spring up) would then need to come up with workable proposals that can go into law or a decent code of practice. IMHO, the interweb companies need to start playing the game like Hollywood and Big Media do. Hire some top-gun lawyers and lobbyists. Kick this decrepit business model apart until it is down squirming on the ground and no one wants it anymore. Inject some sanity into the debate and give the industry a stable and level playing field where it can grow. This is unfortunately how the democratic system works on a good day.

Right now the entertainment industry and big media hold too many of the cards and have only one target in sight: control of the internet. But the Internet needs to be treated as a public commons. And right now it needs protection. We could lose the commons more quickly than we think.

It is not sufficient to rant in forums if you want to change things (although it does help raise awareness). Note also that this is an election year in the US. Most politicians only have one thing in mind, re-election. They probably won't do much to change the status quo or rock the boat. But helping to draw the battle-lines (which is what Dodd and the MPAA are doing) might help politicians focus a little.

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Silver badge

All stake holders?

I think you missed the important ones, like the artists, performers and production staff.

You also made the mistake of including the 'media' and 'entertainment' companies. These are the problem - they are the people who take the biggest cut of the money from the performers, manufacturers and consumers and add nothing of value.

The stake-holders in the industry _should_ be the people producing the music and films, and the people buying them. This includes both the performance, and the physical media. The reason these industries are a laughing stock is the fact that if you follow the money, it goes to people who 'own the rights to' the performers. This is why many people, somewhat childishly perhaps, refer to them as the MAFIAA.

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Stop

Don't bother

It's not easy to fix, because the justification for not responding is clearly just a thin excuse. The petition does not request any specific 'law enforcement action'. It calls for an 'investigation'. The type of investigation is not specified: it could have nothing to do with 'law enforcement'. Is, say, a House or Senate ethics investigation 'law enforcement'? No. No it is not.

Add to that the fact that the get-out clause says the White House 'may' not respond to such petitions - clearly implying that the alternative possibility also exists, and the WH is free to choose whether or not to respond, on whatever grounds it likes - and you can see that they've simply found a very thin fig leaf to cover up the fact that, if they're not going to investigate Mr Dodd, there is no response that would look anything but pathetically weak-willed. Clearly they don't want to respond, and will come up with some excuse not to respond to _any_ petition on the topic.

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Facepalm

@Loyal Commenter

Point taken, I should have mentioned the artists, performers et al....with more than an etc. I'm trying very hard to stay under the 2K limit (not easy with this topic). A consortium with artists, media industries and everyone else involved would be a great film to watch, as well. If C-SPAN filmed the debates I bet their ratings would soar.

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PT

@Loyal Commentator

Surely 'all stake holders' includes not only those who benefit from monopoly protection, but those on the other side of the deal who agree to that monopoly in exchange for a public benefit. This is emphatically NOT restricted to people who buy the shit, but the entire public, born and unborn, who have a right under the agreement to receive these works freely from the public domain - preferably some time this millennium. It is precisely because the general public has been excluded from negotiations that things have become so one sided. If the public receives no benefit from the deal, why should they care if anyone else does?

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Silver badge

BTW

The US Attorney who brought the indictment against Megaupload was a longtime enforcer for the BSA before his appointment to the DOJ. His appointment to US Attorney passed in the Senate by unanimous consent.

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But our president is a politician from Illinois! Doesn't that mean anything anymore?

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SURE DOES!

It means he's been a lying piece of shit the whole time like all the other Illinois politicians who normally end up incarcerated for bribery, extortion, or other illegal acts. I think Illinois state slogan that appears on our license plates(yes I live in the shit hole) should be changed from the "Land of Lincoln" to the "Land of Political Corruption"

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Bronze badge

Well nowadays every politician is a mini-Ryan or Daly.

It means Political Corruption in the rest of the country has gotten to the same level as in Illinois. Bad news for the rest of us really.

Used to be you guys had the High Profile scum, the Ryans and Dalys, plus the two biggest consumer insurance companies, who could make anyone in office "see things their way". Among them, Allstate and State Farm still exercise an enormous amount of monetary influence and Policy reflects it. The Chicago Mercantile Exchange influences the same amount of influence as well.

Nowadays the only real scandals Illinois has produced that have caught national attention are the two governors in Prison, and a President who would never be re-elected except for the fact that the Republican field imploded on itsself. Its not quite the same as the excesses that Chicago's inside families inflicted on the rest of the State during the 70's by controlling Policy in Springfield and City policy in Chicago and the surrounding area so completely. Nowhere close really. Its just the rest of the country learned how not to get caught like they did.

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Bronze badge
FAIL

Erm...

That should read: influences the same amount of people. Or wields the same amount of influence. Whichever you like more.

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Anonymous Coward

Obama is a typical lying politician

Don't believe a word he says because he can lie out of both sides of his mouth at the same time.

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Unhappy

Not suprising

But still disappointing.

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Anonymous Coward

Copyright infringement will cost you

More legislation will become law to slow the tide of copyright infringement. If you don't infringe you have no problems.

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Flame

Thieving scum ..

I believe in copyright (and patents) to encourage the creation of new work, inventions et al by enabling people to publish and get just reward for their work.

Very different to the legislation being pushed through to extend effective copyright to over 100 years on some stuff which, of course, doesn't benefit the creators but the parasites who bought rights for almost nothing, paid a few bob to the politicians to extend copyright making their small investment worth a fortune.

Nice scam if you can get it. That's why I have no respect for copyright over 50 years, that's why I will ignore it, and I think I'm doing the right thing depriving copyright holders over what wasn't theirs anyway.

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Anonymous Coward

I met a guy from the Whitehouse ICT team

he said that on the first day of joining the staff, he had to fill in a blank, undated resignation letter where he expressed sorrow that he had to leave for ______ reasons. This was just kept on file in case any situation got sticky and they had to start throwing people visibly out of the balloon.

that is all

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FAIL

Expectations

Obama is doing what governments tend to - that is fail to meet expectations. The thing here is that the people that signed the petition expected this would prompt some sort of action. They might have been happy if some half-arsed thing had been done in place of their full demands, but to turn around and do *nothing* is exactly why these things start in the first place.

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Devil

To thanks to the wit who first said it:

An honest US politician is one that stays bought.

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Of course the USA if full of corruption!

It was originally settled (to some extent) by a group of religious zealots!

Compare with Australia: not entirely clean but not bad considering most of the early settlers where criminals to start with...

It seems that the the problem is leaking into British politics too - government not prepared to act on the economy for fear of scaring the financial industry (the only industry we really have left) away!

Can we send the politicians away on a space ark and start again please?

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Ru
Unhappy

Compare with Australia?

Not so many differences, these days. If you've been keeping up with Aussie news on the Reg, you may note that "a group of religious zealots" wields considerable political power. They're dead keen on censorship and have some pretty bizarre views on sex and drugs and alcohol. I'm sure they'd get on just fine with US politicos...

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Alien

Ark Fleet

B-Ark perhaps? With all of the Hairdressers and Documentary Film Makers?

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And telephone sanitizers! You mustn't forget them.

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Holmes

Lobbying == Bribery

Surely everyone knows that "lobbying" is simply "bribery" but accepted and legally approved? Or am I missing some part of the story here?

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Facepalm

"To avoid the appearance of improper influence"

To late! Oh, they are talking about going after Dodd.

I thought they may have been talking about themselves for some reason...

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Big Brother

Can anyone name a US politician currently seeking donations?

for example for re-election as US president?

no conflict of interest, merely demonstrates why the only thing that united politicians in the US was keeping John McCain (and his political funding and disclosure reforms) out of the Whitehouse.

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Silver badge
Thumb Down

Two words: Joe Byden

That numb-nuts Joe Byden, V-P, etc. has long been bought and sold by the MPAA.

His profile is fairly low overseas but this robo-mouth is constantly shooting off for the MPAA.

US politics is corrupt from the prescient to the dog-catchers and sheriffs.

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Unfortunately one of the founding principles of the US constitution is partly to blame for the current ridiculous state of American politics, namely the right of free speech. It is constitutionally illegal to limit the amount of air time a person (ie politician) can buy. If he has enough money he can buy a whole tv channel for a year to spout his political nonsense to get elected.

The UK election system allocates broadcast time according to the number of candidates you have in the election. These are free to broadcast, you just need to spend money in making the advert. Thus you reduce the cost of a political campaign and regulate the excesses somewhat.

This would not be tolerated in the USA as it would be deemed unconstitutional.

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Anonymous Coward

Two teams...

US politics apes sports. The spectators / electorate can't comprehend any contest with more than two teams on the field at once. Their brain stems would melt down if they caught a glimpse of a three-way. Someone needs to invent a mass market sport for the US market that has N teams playing on the field all at once.

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