So, here we go again. Money affects everything that now happens in government. Without curbs on lobbyists here is what happens to any bill with a profile above ground level:
Patent "reform" goes nowhere.
It is the never ending attack of those Special Interests on legislation that makes any proposal stall and end up in a tail spin of debate. Debate is a good and healthy thing when used in a good and constructive way. The lobbyist, however, do not use debate in a constructive way. Often the goal is simply to create uncertainty in the mind of the legislators as the corporate interests continue to do whatever they want in the absence of rules. Money drives the government, in this sort of case, to become less and less effective. When the public perception wavers and you start to hear the comment that government is the problem it means that the lobbyist has won. The old quote from Ronald Reagan, "I'm from the government and I'm here to help." is a statement of the defilement of the view that our government is of/by the people. It has not been so for a very long time but usually if you look closely enough this view traces back to some monied interest pushing useful government to the sides so that it/they can proceed unhindered. More later on how the re-framing of an idea can poison the well.