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Corporate Donations: inherently corrupting or just part of the system?


Congalltee

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Nov 10, 2009
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Corporations cannot vote. Neither can foreignors overseas. But we allow Corporations influence public policy by donating to political parties. Why is this?

From a Company point of view, i wonder are such donations legal if the Memoranda and Articles of Association do not specificaly allow for them. Could a shareholder complain to the Director of Corporate Enforcement that a director is using Company money to support his/her favoured political party (now that SF supports low corporate taxation, it is not as if the choice is that large).

The Greens do not accept Corporate donations but have not banned them, while they are in government. I wonder does this have anything to do with the large debt of Fianna Fail?

phil hogan of fine gael makes no apology for accepting corporate donations - despite the less than honourable record of his party. michael noonan as leader banned them as a result. . kenny brought them back.

The same applies to large personal donations. Why when spending limits are so low - though ignored - can large ie 680 plus, donations be justified? Similarily all large gifts -bar engagement rings - should be declared.

Does anyone really think that corporations and large donors do so to 'support democracy'?

Should they not simply be banned and political parties required to tap their members for money? (ff do not currently have a membership fee)
 


Congalltee

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Are people happy that our politics is funded by the taxpayer and corporations and not party members, community collections and online donations?
 

Cael

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Jun 19, 2006
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Corporate donations are just a small part of the merger of corporate and state power. The politicians are groomed at all levels by corporate interests. To oppose corporate interest would be to be branded an extremist and a subversive - if not absolutely insane, by the corporate media.
 

uriah

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Apr 18, 2009
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If those who make 'political donations' and claim that they do not expect any favours in return are sincere, then perhaps the money they are so keen to donate should go to a central fund to support all political candidates.

The donors could receive some tax benefit in return for their support of democracy.
 

wombat

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Jun 16, 2007
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If those who make 'political donations' and claim that they do not expect any favours in return are sincere, then perhaps the money they are so keen to donate should go to a central fund to support all political candidates.
What they mean is that they expect no personal favours but they donate to parties whose policies they agree with, in other words, pro business parties. The Labour party was founded as the political wing of the Trade Union movement which is why unions contribute funds. I don't want to pay taxes to support political parties, even the one I support.
 

olamp

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Mar 24, 2010
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1,452
Corporate donations are just part of the corrupt system that has prevailed in this country since we became a free state- Are the Irish people inherently corrupt or what? We have always "admired" the cute hoors who avoided paying their taxes and bucking the system --there is no future for honest hardworking people in this country.It goes without saying that those who can afford to pay for favours will get them -politicians may start off as honest people but they all become corrupted by power in the end .
 

jpc

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Jun 14, 2007
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Stop them immediately.
Any circumvention that can be attributed to a corporation or a corporate special interest group should be hammered financially.
 

Bobert

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Why shouldn't companies be allowed to donate? Do they not have as much a right to influence democracy as indivduals?
 

Evil Eco-Fascist

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I don't want to pay taxes to support political parties, even the one I support.
They're going to be financially bitch-whipped and manipulated by someone at the end of the day. Would you prefer that to be you, the voter and tax-payer, or big business/unions? Political parties have to get the money somewhere to participate in a functioning democracy, so the choice we have is who they are ultimately financially beholden to.
 

escoline

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Mar 19, 2010
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Unless we are prepared to pay extra taxes to fund political paties and politics in general then corporate donations will remain. If they do the only thing that government can do is make them as transparent as possible. This involves the production of assounts for ALL donations naming the contributors.
 

Congalltee

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Why shouldn't companies be allowed to donate? Do they not have as much a right to influence democracy as indivduals?
No they do not. People have a human right to vote. Corporations exist to make profits for their shareholders. Why should Directors have the right to divert company funds into the parties they, as individuals, support? The only rational explanation is they do so in the hope of gaining access or favourss.
 

Bobert

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No they do not. People have a human right to vote. Corporations exist to make profits for their shareholders. Why should Directors have the right to divert company funds into the parties they, as individuals, support? The only rational explanation is they do so in the hope of gaining access or favourss.
Leaving aside my own belief that companies ought to be able to vote as they pay tax, why does it seem outlandish to you that companies might endorse a party that they believe would provide a better broadband, rail, road, education, health infrastructure which would certainbly be in theirs and their employees interests?

As for the directors diverting funds, wel I wouldn't condone it unless the shareholders of Company X endorsed donating to the Y Party at an AGM.
 

Congalltee

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Leaving aside my own belief that companies ought to be able to vote as they pay tax, why does it seem outlandish to you that companies might endorse a party that they believe would provide a better broadband, rail, road, education, health infrastructure which would certainbly be in theirs and their employees interests?

As for the directors diverting funds, wel I wouldn't condone it unless the shareholders of Company X endorsed donating to the Y Party at an AGM.
Your first thought is bizarre, but at least it is consistent. Your second paragraphi is naive in the extreme.
 

Bobert

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wombat

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Unless we are prepared to pay extra taxes to fund political paties and politics in general then corporate donations will remain. If they do the only thing that government can do is make them as transparent as possible. This involves the production of assounts for ALL donations naming the contributors.
I would prefer that to compulsory contributions to political parties through my taxes. I'm afraid influence extends a lot deeper than simply contributing cash as Mr Murdoch in the UK & O'Reilly here have shown - give me my way or I'll use my newspaper to campaign against you. I think a limit on the amount and full disclosure is the best we can hope for unless you think that FF is more important than the health service.
 

spidermom

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Sep 13, 2008
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I would prefer that to compulsory contributions to political parties through my taxes. I'm afraid influence extends a lot deeper than simply contributing cash as Mr Murdoch in the UK & O'Reilly here have shown - give me my way or I'll use my newspaper to campaign against you. I think a limit on the amount and full disclosure is the best we can hope for unless you think that FF is more important than the health service.
Agreed...to see tax payers money going towards the running of political parties rather than health or education(especially now!) would be obscene!
 

Congalltee

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Nov 10, 2009
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Agreed...to see tax payers money going towards the running of political parties rather than health or education(especially now!) would be obscene!
That's a very short-shighted view, when you consider the damage done to the body politic by donations from developers and banks.
 

junius

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Jul 31, 2010
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no they do not. People have a human right to vote. Corporations exist to make profits for their shareholders. Why should directors have the right to divert company funds into the parties they, as individuals, support? The only rational explanation is they do so in the hope of gaining access or favourss.
+1,000,000
 

Rocky

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Dec 9, 2004
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8,550
Make every single political donation publishable - no de minimis limit. Once we have complete transparency, I have no issue.
Is that workable though. Lets just say I buy a Fine Gael Superdraw ticket for €80, would that need to be declared? Because that would be a massive list. Lets take it to the extreme, I buy a €5 raffle ticket a FG tablequiz, should that be declared? They're both technically political donations and if you want no limit then technically the €5 should be declared.
 

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