Santa Monica, CA -- The recall campaign to oust Governor Davis is a cautionary tale for politicians who support public bailouts of corporations (as Davis did in California's energy crisis) and whose "pay to play" politics earn them reputations for putting the interest of corporations over the public, according to consumer activist Jamie Court.
Court charts Davis's mishandling of California's electricity crisis, including his advocacy of a taxpayer bailout for California's electric utilities, in his new book Corporateering: How Corporate Power Steals Your Personal Freedom And What You Can Do About It (Tarcher/Putnam) -- which Publisher's Weekly says "is keeping the muckraking tradition alive". Court seeks to put the word "corporateer" -- when corporations' commercial gain is prioritized over the gain of individuals and society -- into popular discourse to give the public a way to chart inappropriate behavior by corporations and politicians.
"Governor Davis is in trouble not simply because of a bad economy, but because the public blames him for his mishandling of the California energy crisis and for other cash register politics that puts the interest of industries over the public," said Court, also the executive director of the
Santa Monica-based Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights (FTCR). "Other politicians should consider that just because corporations have large amounts of campaign cash they do not have the right to vote, and it's voters who Governor Davis will face."
Court noted that it is not helpful for the Governor to be backed by the Business Roundtable, a coalition of corporate CEOs including Bechtel, Chevron-Texaco and Southern California Edison, who Davis has sought a taxpayer bailout for. The Roundtable unanimously voted to oppose the recall.
"Governor Davis has a chance to save his career if he announced support for ambitious corporate reforms, but unfortunately the same corporations that have got him in trouble are now the biggest opponents of the recall," said Court.
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