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January 22, 2010

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Lawrence J. Young

The broad brush applied by the comments in the immediately preceding post obscures what took place and hence what has taken place with this mindless ruling of the usual suspects. Freedom of the press, a form of free speech, implicitly refers to the printed word, whatever its source may have been. The quoted case involved a rather large newspaper publishing entity being sued by an 'individual' who resented what the NYT was saying about civil rights.

Is this the same as what is being discussed and decided upon in the current action of the SCUS? Generally speaking are the motivations of a newspaper publishing entity editorializing about a particular political issue and the politicians associated with it, the same as those of Pfizer or United Health or GE when their spokesman expresses a viewpoint about a particular political issue and the politicians associated with it?
Hopefully not, and if so, therein lies one of the differences between the two situatons.

Bruce Borrus

It was surprising that the NY Times railed against the idea that corporations have First Amendment rights. The greatest First Amendment case of the 20th century protected a corporation. That case was NY Times v. Sullivan. The Times editorial board must have forgotten.

Analysis of the issue begins with the recognition that the First Amendment limits the power of Congress: "Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press."

I am disappointed that four Justices think that Congress has the power to abridge freedom of speech and of the press.

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