Jan 30, 2013
Order tickets via Eventbrite: http://overflowusofalec-efbevent.eventbrite.com The United States of ALEC reports on the most influential corporate-funded political force most of us have never heard of ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council. A national consortium of state politicians and powerful corporations, ALEC presents itself as a nonpartisan public-private partnership. But behind that mantra lies a vast network of corporate lobbying and political action aimed to increase corporate profits at public expense without public knowledge. Using interviews, documents, and field reports, the episode explores ALECs self-serving machine at work, acting in a way one Wisconsin politician describes as a corporate dating service for lonely legislators and corporate special interests. In state houses around the country, hundreds of pieces of boilerplate ALEC legislation are proposed or enacted that would, among other things, dilute collective bargaining rights, make it harder for some Americans to vote, and limit corporate liability for harm caused to consumers each accomplished without the public ever knowing whos behind it. All of us here are very familiar with ALEC and the influence that ALEC has with many of the [legislative] members, says Arizona State Senator Steve Farley. Corporations have the right to present their arguments, but they dont have the right to do it secretly. United States of ALEC is a collaboration between Okapi Productions LLC and the Schumann Media Center, headed by Bill Moyers, which supports independent journalism. Common Cause has special permission from Bill Moyers to screen the film. The film will begin at 7pm. We'll have some discussion after the film and be totally finished by 9pm at the very latest. Discussion afterward will be lead by Common Cause. Common Cause is a nonpartisan, nonprofit advocacy organization founded in 1970 by John Gardner as a vehicle for citizens to make their voices heard in the political process and to hold their elected leaders accountable to the public interest. Today, Common Cause is one of the most active, effective, and respected nonprofit organizations working for political change in America. The Illinois Chapter of Common Cause will be here to lead discussion. Their Executive Director is a South Loop resident! Transit/Parking - While we encourage the use of public transit (Red Line, #29, #62 and other buses are close), limited parking is available in the rear of the building on a first come first served basis. Bring $3 for your spot. No one will be in the lot to take it. You can pay at the ticket check-in table.