Our God-given right to be wrong has taken another pummeling.
I think of the right to be wrong as our bedrock right, the right in which every other right is planted. I’d like to think progressives and conservatives both agree, and when it suits them they do. But it is an axiom of human nature that the impulse to correct injustice turns us into busybodies who rarely ask whether the injustice or the correction will cause more harm.
When I think of states’ rights as the right of states to go their own ways on most matters, each free to design its own solution to a common problem, not because the local solution is bound to be the best solution but even though it probably isn’t, I’m all for states’ rights. I think it’s usually fairly obvious where a line must be drawn: local solutions are unacceptable if they deny some Americans fundamental rights—such as the right to vote, or work, or go to a decent school.
I have trouble thinking of the right of corporations to donate unlimited amounts of money to political campaigns as that kind of fundamental right.
And if it isn’t, then I believe any coherent theory of federalism would allow Montana to limit corporate donations to political campaigns, even though Montana might be dead wrong about those donations being harmful.