Thursday, February 11, 2010

Video Games; Dems Move to Curb Corporate Political Speech

Well, not much to report on. I finally finished Mass Effect 2. You'll all be happy to know that, thanks to me, our galaxy remains safe.
In all seriousness, it was a really good, engaging game. One of the best ones I've played in a while, and that's saying something because video games, in general, have become very, very good over the last few years. People who haven't played one in a long time should consider picking up one of these new plot driven action adventure/role playing games. Even if you get frustrated with the actual gameplay itself, most of these games allow you to just set the game on an easy level so you can play through and enjoy the thing without having to restart sections over and over.
You know those cheesey action/adventure movies that we watched growing up? The ones that had pretty mediocre plots, but that were fun to watch because of all the special effects, fighting, and action sequences? Well, these new videogames are pretty much making those kinds of movies obsolete. Action is more fun when you're a part of it, and the visual effects and the plotlines involved in some of these games have gotten to the point where they rival, if not surpass, their Hollywood equivalents (I mean, the plots aren't exactly going to move these games into Academy Award territory, but by way of comparison to action/adventure popcorn flicks, they stack up pretty well).
So, try out Arkham Asylum (for Batman fans), the Grand Theft Auto games, Bioshock, Modern Warfare, Gears of War, Fallout 3, or Mass Effect. They're all cool games that manage to grab and keep my attention in a way that most television and a lot of movies fail to do.
I still want to play the new Assassin's Creed, and there's a new Bioshock game coming out as well (how can you argue with a game that has you running around and fighting bad guys in an undersea city that was founded upon the governing principles and philosophy of Ayn Rand?).

Congressional Democrats have unveiled proposed legislation which would help to put some limits on the rights of corporations to engage in free speech. The bill is clearly a move meant to limit the effects of a recent Supreme Court ruling which gave nearly unfettered ability to corporations in terms of allowing them to spend money for political ads and in support of political candidates. One direct impact of the bill would be to limit the ability of foreign owned corporations to spend money on political campaigns and political advertising. Also, the bill requires corporate leaders to appear in their political ads and affirm the fact that they stand behind the content of the ad.
It's probably not too surprising to most of you that I think this bill is a good thing. Corporations should never have been given the right to spend money in support of political candidates (or at least not to directly fund their political ads) in the first place. I've said it before, and I'll say it again- corporations don't deserve the protection of the First Amendment. I understand that there's a legal fiction which allows corporations to be considered persons for some purposes. Political speech should not be one of those purposes. I've written about this before, so I'm going to try to stop belaboring the point, but I think the Democrats are doing the right thing by trying to curtail some of the damaging effects of this erroneous ruling by the Supreme Court.

Well, I'm sort of swamped today. Hope you guys are having a good one. Everyone stay safe and warm.

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