Should corporations be considered people ?

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Should corporations be considered people ?

A recent poll that a friend of mine started on Facebook asked the simple question : Should corporations be considered people ?

Response were widely varied.

What do some of you think  and why do you think that way ?

 

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
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harleysportster wrote:A

harleysportster wrote:

A recent poll that a friend of mine started on Facebook asked the simple question : Should corporations be considered people ?

Response were widely varied.

What do some of you think  and why do you think that way ?

No.

When all the shareholders and employees of a company are willing to go to jail for a single crime, or be drafted, or answer a single subpoena by showing up to court, THEN corporations can be considered people.

"Obviously I'm convinced of the existence of G-d. I'm equally convinced that Atheists who've led good lives will be in Olam HaBa going "How the heck did I wind up in this place?!?" while Christians who've treated people like dirt will be in some other place asking the exact same question."


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harleysportster wrote:A

harleysportster wrote:

A recent poll that a friend of mine started on Facebook asked the simple question : Should corporations be considered people ?

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Thus far

Thus far,  the overwhelming majority of us that have voted on Facebook have voted no. Myself included.

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


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Got this from another

Got this from another message board:

I am the 99%, and I won't believe that Corporations are people until the state of Texas executes one of them.

(Thanks to Heidi, whoever she may be.)

 

So, no.  And the above is as good a reason as any.

 

-- I feel so much better since I stopped trying to believe.

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What FurryCatHerder and CJ said

What Furry Cat Herder and CJ said. ^^^^^^^^^^^


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harleysportster wrote:

A recent poll that a friend of mine started on Facebook asked the simple question : Should corporations be considered people ?

Response were widely varied.

What do some of you think  and why do you think that way ?

The idea that a corporation is a person is very limited legal fiction. The limitations are something the courts appear to have forgotten. Does a corporation have citizenship? No. Was it born? No? But if it was "born" in the US it is a citizen by the 16th amendment, no? So why can't corporations vote?

So lets look at the 1st amendment. A religion can have a corporation but a corporation cannot have a religion. Corporations do not have the right of assembly as there are anti-trust laws. That leaves press and speech. Corporations cannot publish anything they want as, believe it or not, there are truth in advertizing laws. Nor can truth in advertising be circumvented by using only press conferences.

That leaves us with freedom of political speech. Oddly that was the original intention of the 1st amendment protection, political speech only. It is only in the last half century or so that it has been expanded to more than a protection of political speech and then mainly to strike down local prurient interest laws, i.e., anti-pornography.

One can do a quick run-through of other civil and legal differences such as corporations cannot be arrested or jailed much less executed. They cannot be drafted. So why are corporations considered persons in any sense?

Every thing must have an owner. In matters of religion for example the ownership of church property had to be literally in the name of a living, breathing person. That person could literally sell church property as his own personal whim and keep the proceeds for himself as that person was the legal owner of record. A superior could remove him from office but could not take back ownership.

That was also true for Ford Motor Company and Edison Electric and all the rest of the companies before corporations existed.

It took me a while mulling this difference to see the impact of the difference. Do not be surprised if it seems trivial to you now.

So a church, say the Archdiocese of Boston, changes from personal ownership by the archbishop which it once was, to a corporation. The archbishop as CEO can now be replaced while the corporation retains ownership as a legal person.

The same was true for Ford, Edison, Rockefeller. No longer was "stock" a private transaction of contractually shared profits but within the legal confines of a type of corporation so anyone could buy stock under a fixed set of rules. And thus a stock market is possible -- which might be another argument against legal persons for the purpose of ownership.

As to corporations having the freedom of political speech, decades ago someone came to my door soliciting my signature against a local increase in electric rates. My response was to the effect, I own stock in the electric company, why would I be against raising rates? Yes, how crude and vulgar of me to think only of myself. But the local school retirement program was also invested in it. I have no idea how many other local organizations as well as just individuals were invested in it. I see no reason why the local power company (Virginia Electric if anyone is interested) should not be able to advertise in favor of a rate increase.

Yes, I know, think of the poor. But the US has the most transient poor class in the world. For most people three years is a long time to be poor. Poor today means working tomorrow with a pension plan invested largely in corporations. Even in the worst case, hard core poverty rarely lasts more than a single generation but for them there are special programs which do not make life soft but do not lead to starving in the streets either.

So yes, there are always horrible examples and there are also perfectly reasonable examples which can be misrepresented as horrible. Mostly we have the latter. The former are corrected as a matter of course by replacing the idiot with someone who does not waste corporate monies.

As a test, make a list of all the horrible examples you know. Consider unions are also corporations. PETA and Greenpeace and the Sierra Club are corporations.

Horrible example, Coal lobbies for coal. Everything is more expensive than coal. When coal is restricted electric rates must increase. Are both the power companies and the Environmental Defense Fund against the poor? You can't have it both ways. Both are ignoring the poor.

Does someone want to accuse me of apologizing for corporations? Show me what I said that does that. It has been an established fact of reality for nearly 150 years that the lower the selling price the greater the profit. Every artificially high price such as excise taxes on alcohol and tobacco is the act of government. As long as corporations are legally prohibited from conspiring I do trust them to work towards selling me the most toys at the lowest possible price. I trust them because they make more money if they do that.

And because corporations cannot be arrested or imprisoned that means mere employees even if they are CEOs are the ones who go to jail for conspiring to fix prices. But since higher prices depress earnings and their bonuses depend upon increasing earnings and the proven way to increase earnings is to decrease selling prices what is there to worry about? That several CEOs might get together and conspire to reduce their bonuses?

===

Trivia: Who was the first person to become a legal corporation?

Marlon Brando. The gov in the form of the IRS sued and Brando won.

Trivia 2: No it is not a good idea for you unless your accountant suggests it. If you do not have an accountant in the first place it is never a good idea for you.

Leave them lauging: What is the scientific term for a politician with a hardon?

Homo Erectus Electus

 

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No. Period. Anyone who

No. Period. Anyone who argues otherwise is a total fucking idiot. Worse than a theist. Though probably also a theist, compounding the stupid.

No unwarranted offence intended to anyone, it's simply the truth.

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I couldn't believe that

I couldn't believe that Supreme Court decision. Long ago even Republicans wouldn't have done that.

Although our concept of equal protection is there for both the majority and minority, the idea is to lean towards the minority so the power doesn't lean to a monopoly. This decision allows the monopoly to get bigger. In this case the majority of people do not have the majority of money to compete politically so the "majority" in this case is money creating a political monopoly.

Corporations are NOT humans, they are run by humans. As collective businesses they are not.

I am far more than ready to get rid of private funding of politics.

 

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 You do realize that the

 You do realize that the corporate personhood that is legally recognized is precisely the reason why you can sue a company? If a company is not recognized as an entity in and of itself you would have to sue all the individuals involved in whatever beef you had with the company. The result would be a legal nightmare. Corporations are not people in the strict sense of the word, but are and should be people in the legal sense. Those of you who are vociferously speaking against corporate personhood would probably do well to do a little research on what it means in a legal context. 

 

And why shouldn't corporations be free to run political advertisements? You realize that if RRS decided to raise money to run a political advertisement against a theocrat running for office who vowed to pass a law outlawing atheism, we would be a corporation in the eyes of the law. Any time a group of people get together for a common purpose and pool their resources it is a corporation. If corporations were banned from buying political advertising, they only people who could run political advertisements would be wealthy individuals. Anyone without enough money to pay for an ad personally wouldn't have the option of joining with others of like mind to raise the money. I suppose you could try to ban only for profit corporations from political advertising/lobbying but I don't see the point.

 

This movement that has been building towards removing private funding of campaigns and worse, banning private individuals or groups from making political advertisements, is extremely alarming to me. Are you going to have it publicly funded where the people who decide where the money is going to go are the people with political power? Sounds like letting the fox guard the hen house to me.

 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Just a couple responses and

Just a couple responses and corrections and the injection of some nuance here.

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
As to corporations having the freedom of political speech, decades ago someone came to my door soliciting my signature against a local increase in electric rates. My response was to the effect, I own stock in the electric company, why would I be against raising rates? Yes, how crude and vulgar of me to think only of myself. But the local school retirement program was also invested in it. I have no idea how many other local organizations as well as just individuals were invested in it. I see no reason why the local power company (Virginia Electric if anyone is interested) should not be able to advertise in favor of a rate increase.

I don't think anyone wants to deny any corporation the right to advertise in favor of anything. If Virginia Electric or National Grid (my provider) wants to take out full page ads in every large newspaper in the country explaining why they want to raise rates then they certainly are allowed to with no objection from anyone. When the issue of corporations having the freedom of political speech is invoked what is meant is not merely the right to advertise but rather the right to influence elections with the influx of mass amounts of cash to specific candidates that pledge to work towards the same goals of that corporation regardless of how those programs might affect the officials' human constituents. The "freedom of political speech" is really just Orwellian doublespeak for the freedom to bribe government officials.

Before this launches into a tangent on Citizens United v FEC let me cut everyone off at the pass, it is not my intention to retry that case here. The idea that money=political speech has been circulating for decades. Personally, I don't care if corporations make political videos and then advertises them. Sometimes I find those videos to be hilarious especially when they are done poorly or draw paranoid or foolish conclusions. My point here is that giving corporations the right to contribute to political campaigns out of some misguided belief that corporations should have concrete first amendment protections is in itself a reason to strip corporations of personhood rights.

 

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
Yes, I know, think of the poor. But the US has the most transient poor class in the world. For most people three years is a long time to be poor. Poor today means working tomorrow with a pension plan invested largely in corporations. Even in the worst case, hard core poverty rarely lasts more than a single generation

Actually, this is false. As provided in the abstract for this paper: http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/2/7/45002641.pdf from the OECD:

Quote:
Mobility in wages, earnings and education across generations is relatively low in France, southern European countries, the United Kingdom and the United States. By contrast such mobility tends to be higher in Australia, Canada and the Nordic countries.

or as explained in this Economist article:

Quote:
Parental income is a better predictor of a child’s future in America than in much of Europe, implying that social mobility is less powerful. Different groups of Americans have different levels of opportunity. Those born to the middle class have about an equal chance of moving up or down the income ladder, according to the Economic Mobility Project. But those born to black middle-class families are much more likely than their white counterparts to fall in rank. The children of the rich and poor, meanwhile, are less mobile than the middle class’s. More than 40% of those Americans born in the bottom quintile remain stuck there as adults.

 source link: http://www.economist.com/node/15908469
 

The US has one of the least transient poor classes at least in the developed world. The poor in America tend to stay poor and tend to do so over generations.

 

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
but for them there are special programs which do not make life soft but do not lead to starving in the streets either.

To a point but the social safety net has been largely dismantled over the last 20 years or so.

 

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
So yes, there are always horrible examples and there are also perfectly reasonable examples which can be misrepresented as horrible. Mostly we have the latter. The former are corrected as a matter of course by replacing the idiot with someone who does not waste corporate monies.

As a test, make a list of all the horrible examples you know. Consider unions are also corporations. PETA and Greenpeace and the Sierra Club are corporations.

Horrible example, Coal lobbies for coal. Everything is more expensive than coal. When coal is restricted electric rates must increase. Are both the power companies and the Environmental Defense Fund against the poor? You can't have it both ways. Both are ignoring the poor.

Sounds like a false equivalency to me. The choice isn't necessarily between coal or poor people living in darkness. The choice is between affordable, clean energy (whether we want that to be nuclear, solar, geothermal, whetever--and the discussion over whether any of these options are practical is an argument for another time) or the same unsustainable system of dirty energy that leads to higher costs being born by the poor in the form of high energy costs, ecological degradation (coal plants are most often located in poor neighborhoods), higher costs associated with health risks, greater costs in the form of infrastructure maintenance, etc. And that doesn't mention the costs of getting the coal out of the ground both in environmental costs and in the cost to human health and well being. All these externalized costs to the poor really trashes the idea that restricting coal is a smack to the balls of the poor.

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
Does someone want to accuse me of apologizing for corporations? Show me what I said that does that. It has been an established fact of reality for nearly 150 years that the lower the selling price the greater the profit.

Not necessarily. You need to get beyond marketing 101 to find out that sometimes a lower selling price actually decreases profit. But again, this might be beyond the scope of the topic at hand. Just be assured that profit is a bit more complex than just as a function of selling price.

 

As to the question in the OP--Should corporations be considered people? No, they absolutely should not. I do believe that corporations should have well defined advantages (I couldn't bring myself to say rights as only people have rights) but that those advantages do not prioritze corporate interests over individual human interests. Prioritizing corporate interest over individual human interests reifies corporations to the point that humans become mere appendages to corporate goals. Corporatism is truly the reverse of humanism. 

 


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Beyond Saving wrote: And

Beyond Saving wrote:

 And why shouldn't corporations be free to run political advertisements? You realize that if RRS decided to raise money to run a political advertisement against a theocrat running for office who vowed to pass a law outlawing atheism, we would be a corporation in the eyes of the law. Any time a group of people get together for a common purpose and pool their resources it is a corporation.

Only if they register as a corporation. And you have to write up a charter and appoint officers. It's a whole big thing. I don't know if RSS has ever registered as a corporation or a non-profit. But if they haven't, if they are just a group of people who have gotten together on the internet to bitch about shit or march in the local godless march they are not considered a corporation and are not entitled to either the benefits or the requirements of such under the law.

 

Beyond Saving wrote:
If corporations were banned from buying political advertising, they only people who could run political advertisements would be wealthy individuals. Anyone without enough money to pay for an ad personally wouldn't have the option of joining with others of like mind to raise the money. I suppose you could try to ban only for profit corporations from political advertising/lobbying but I don't see the point.

Well, as I pointed out in another post the problem with the money=speech thing (which is really what is at issue when we talk about corporate personhood) is that regardless of whether the money is spent on a political ad or not, giving unlimited amounts of money to a campaign is the equivalent of legalized bribery. Do you really think that a local atheist group will ever have enough money pooled to outspend Wal-Mart or Massey Energy or the Koch Brothers who literally have millions to blow on a single campaign? The effect of corporate personhood in campaign contributions is that literally the only people who can affect real change through contributions is the wealthy individual corporation. You've merely replaced the wealthy individual person with the wealthy individual corporation.

 

Beyond Saving wrote:
This movement that has been building towards removing private funding of campaigns and worse, banning private individuals or groups from making political advertisements, is extremely alarming to me. Are you going to have it publicly funded where the people who decide where the money is going to go are the people with political power? Sounds like letting the fox guard the hen house to me.

I don't have an easy answer to how to fix the problem but corporate personhood and the privilege of unlimited funding of campaigns is not the answer. Kevin Drum's article here: http://motherjones.com/politics/2011/02/income-inequality-labor-union-decline from Mother Jones contains a good explanation of why campaign funding is an importanmt issue and why unrestricted funding by corporations is a bad idea. (and yes I know that Mother Jones is a left-wing magazine and as such has its biases but at least it is open about its biases--and besides you don't need to agree with Drum's conclusions as to whether trends are good or bad to become informed as to what the trends are--in other words just go read it with an open mind, keep what is valuable)

 


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Aghast wrote:Only if they

Aghast wrote:

Only if they register as a corporation. And you have to write up a charter and appoint officers. It's a whole big thing. I don't know if RSS has ever registered as a corporation or a non-profit. But if they haven't, if they are just a group of people who have gotten together on the internet to bitch about shit or march in the local godless march they are not considered a corporation and are not entitled to either the benefits or the requirements of such under the law.

Not really that big, a handful of forms. If RRS were to attempt to run political advertisements it would have to register as some type of corporation, (probably a 501c3) to receive that kind of cash without running into problems with tax laws. 

 

Aghast wrote:

I don't have an easy answer to how to fix the problem but corporate personhood and the privilege of unlimited funding of campaigns is not the answer. Kevin Drum's article here: http://motherjones.com/politics/2011/02/income-inequality-labor-union-decline from Mother Jones contains a good explanation of why campaign funding is an importanmt issue and why unrestricted funding by corporations is a bad idea. (and yes I know that Mother Jones is a left-wing magazine and as such has its biases but at least it is open about its biases--and besides you don't need to agree with Drum's conclusions as to whether trends are good or bad to become informed as to what the trends are--in other words just go read it with an open mind, keep what is valuable)

 

 

Who is talking about unlimited funding of campaigns? Direct contributions to campaigns are highly regulated both for individuals and corporations. That isn't even an issue that is anywhere near the table.

 

I do believe that anyone should be able to buy an advertisement that is political at any time regardless of whether they are a single wealthy person or a large group of people as a corporation. The advertisements ought to be regulated by the same laws that apply to all speech such as libel and slander laws. SCOTUS has done a fair job managing the delicate line between what is protected political speech and what isn't. In general, I have the attitude that more political discussions are positive and fewer political discussions are negative. 

 

The problem isn't really the campaign money, the real problem is that our federal government holds so much power and influence that throwing massive amounts of money at politicians is a reasonable business decision because regulations have such a large positive or negative effect on a companies bottom line. If you want less money spent on campaigns, remove the power from DC. The one thing most business people are consistent about is they look for a good ROI, if politicians have nothing they can give in return, companies and rich people aren't going to give them money.

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Beyond Saving wrote: You do

Beyond Saving wrote:

 You do realize that the corporate personhood that is legally recognized is precisely the reason why you can sue a company? If a company is not recognized as an entity in and of itself you would have to sue all the individuals involved in whatever beef you had with the company. The result would be a legal nightmare. Corporations are not people in the strict sense of the word, but are and should be people in the legal sense. Those of you who are vociferously speaking against corporate personhood would probably do well to do a little research on what it means in a legal context. 

 

And why shouldn't corporations be free to run political advertisements? You realize that if RRS decided to raise money to run a political advertisement against a theocrat running for office who vowed to pass a law outlawing atheism, we would be a corporation in the eyes of the law. Any time a group of people get together for a common purpose and pool their resources it is a corporation. If corporations were banned from buying political advertising, they only people who could run political advertisements would be wealthy individuals. Anyone without enough money to pay for an ad personally wouldn't have the option of joining with others of like mind to raise the money. I suppose you could try to ban only for profit corporations from political advertising/lobbying but I don't see the point.

 

This movement that has been building towards removing private funding of campaigns and worse, banning private individuals or groups from making political advertisements, is extremely alarming to me. Are you going to have it publicly funded where the people who decide where the money is going to go are the people with political power? Sounds like letting the fox guard the hen house to me.

 

Do you realize that CONTEXT mattes, and the reason that big business masturbates over the decisions is PRECIESLY because it makes it harder to sue a company?

Money equals power, and as long as it is the case you have to protect against all monpolies, be they individuals or corperations.

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Brian37 wrote:Do you realize

Brian37 wrote:

Do you realize that CONTEXT mattes, and the reason that big business masturbates over the decisions is PRECIESLY because it makes it harder to sue a company?

 

Really? Can you link me to a case where the concept of corporate personhood was used to protect a corporation from being sued? There is a case SCOTUS is hearing right now on corporate personhood, Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum where the question of corporate personhood will be a primary determinant of the case. If SCOTUS is consistent with Citizens United and recognizes the corporation as a person for legal purposes, Royal Dutch can be sued. If not, then Royal Dutch cannot be sued. http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/kiobel-v-royal-dutch-petroleum-et-al/?wpmp_switcher=desktop 

 

It really is an interesting case and could hold large implications for businesses that might deal with governments that abuse fundamental human rights by opening them to liability. I believe that corporations should be held to the same laws that individuals are held to unless a specific exception is absolutely necessary due to the actual differences between a person and a corporation. The ironic thing is that the by fighting against the legal concept of corporate personhood the left could subvert the very concept that would allow corporations to be held liable for human rights abuses in foreign countries. A stated goal (and good one IMO) of theirs for decades. Ah the irrationality of american politics. 

 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Most people don't have the

Most people don't have the funds to sue a company, so for the vast majority it would make no difference.
It would transfer responsibility to the ceo and stockholders, making the actual criminals responsible for their actions or lack thereof. That'd be a damn good thing in more than one way. Penalising an entire company only hurts the people at the bottom who get laid off, fired, or see that promotion go out the window, while the criminal element keeps raking in the millions unaffected.
NOTHING should be permitted to interfere in elections. Not individuals nor corporations nor religions, so that argument falls on deaf ears. Ban them all, force all politicians to work with the same amount of resources, and level the playing field for everyone who's daddy wasn't rich to enter politics based on their ideas instead of their wallets.

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Vastet wrote:Most people

Vastet wrote:
Most people don't have the funds to sue a company, so for the vast majority it would make no difference. It would transfer responsibility to the ceo and stockholders, making the actual criminals responsible for their actions or lack thereof. That'd be a damn good thing in more than one way. Penalising an entire company only hurts the people at the bottom who get laid off, fired, or see that promotion go out the window, while the criminal element keeps raking in the millions unaffected. NOTHING should be permitted to interfere in elections. Not individuals nor corporations nor religions, so that argument falls on deaf ears. Ban them all, force all politicians to work with the same amount of resources, and level the playing field for everyone who's daddy wasn't rich to enter politics based on their ideas instead of their wallets.

 

Agree.  Though I would have to ask, from where did the US congress get their money?

 

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Aghast wrote:

Just a couple responses and corrections and the injection of some nuance here.

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
As to corporations having the freedom of political speech, decades ago someone came to my door soliciting my signature against a local increase in electric rates. My response was to the effect, I own stock in the electric company, why would I be against raising rates? Yes, how crude and vulgar of me to think only of myself. But the local school retirement program was also invested in it. I have no idea how many other local organizations as well as just individuals were invested in it. I see no reason why the local power company (Virginia Electric if anyone is interested) should not be able to advertise in favor of a rate increase.

I don't think anyone wants to deny any corporation the right to advertise in favor of anything. If Virginia Electric or National Grid (my provider) wants to take out full page ads in every large newspaper in the country explaining why they want to raise rates then they certainly are allowed to with no objection from anyone. When the issue of corporations having the freedom of political speech is invoked what is meant is not merely the right to advertise but rather the right to influence elections with the influx of mass amounts of cash to specific candidates that pledge to work towards the same goals of that corporation regardless of how those programs might affect the officials' human constituents. The "freedom of political speech" is really just Orwellian doublespeak for the freedom to bribe government officials.

In practice corporations tend to contribute to both parties and both sides even the side against them. This gives them access on the issues and avoids making enemies if only one side gets contributions and the other wins. Rather than bribing politicians this allows politicians to extort both sides of an issue.

Another version of this is the freshman congressman being quizzed by his new staff on issues he never thought about. "Are you for or against pork belly subsidies?" "I guess I'm against it." "Don't worry, there is money on both sides."

Despite the much ballyhooed bugaboo of corporate advertising for issues and candidates I have yet to see an ad "brought to you by General Electric" or any other such corporation.

...

Quote:
A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
Yes, I know, think of the poor. But the US has the most transient poor class in the world. For most people three years is a long time to be poor. Poor today means working tomorrow with a pension plan invested largely in corporations. Even in the worst case, hard core poverty rarely lasts more than a single generation

Actually, this is false. As provided in the abstract for this paper: http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/2/7/45002641.pdf from the OECD:

Quote:
Mobility in wages, earnings and education across generations is relatively low in France, southern European countries, the United Kingdom and the United States. By contrast such mobility tends to be higher in Australia, Canada and the Nordic countries.

or as explained in this Economist article:

Quote:
Parental income is a better predictor of a child’s future in America than in much of Europe, implying that social mobility is less powerful. Different groups of Americans have different levels of opportunity. Those born to the middle class have about an equal chance of moving up or down the income ladder, according to the Economic Mobility Project. But those born to black middle-class families are much more likely than their white counterparts to fall in rank. The children of the rich and poor, meanwhile, are less mobile than the middle class’s. More than 40% of those Americans born in the bottom quintile remain stuck there as adults.

 source link: http://www.economist.com/node/15908469
 

The US has one of the least transient poor classes at least in the developed world. The poor in America tend to stay poor and tend to do so over generations.

Lets be more specific as these are different issues. As I said long term poor is a separate issue and as in the studies the income of the parent is the best predictor.

What I meant by poverty was falling into a period of low or no income and then getting back to normal which is what most poverty programs are geared towards. Again this is the parental income predictor as people do not stay in poverty in the sense I mean it. It is a transient thing. People get back to the predicted income.

The papers are addressing class mobility which is a different issue and a more complicated issue. In just the US one can have the same job and same standard of living vary by a factor of two in dollar income depending upon where one lives. This means one does not include the New York City life style as part of the standard of living so it is complicated.

Quote:
A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
but for them there are special programs which do not make life soft but do not lead to starving in the streets either.

To a point but the social safety net has been largely dismantled over the last 20 years or so.

That is more of a political statement than a factual statement. What was given that name was changed to things with different names. I saw more "will work for food" signs prior to this current mess than I do now. I know of no established Hoovervilles. Unemployment and food stamps appear to be extensible forever. If there is no longer a social safety net, what is the same thing being called today?

Quote:
A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
So yes, there are always horrible examples and there are also perfectly reasonable examples which can be misrepresented as horrible. Mostly we have the latter. The former are corrected as a matter of course by replacing the idiot with someone who does not waste corporate monies.

As a test, make a list of all the horrible examples you know. Consider unions are also corporations. PETA and Greenpeace and the Sierra Club are corporations.

Horrible example, Coal lobbies for coal. Everything is more expensive than coal. When coal is restricted electric rates must increase. Are both the power companies and the Environmental Defense Fund against the poor? You can't have it both ways. Both are ignoring the poor.

Sounds like a false equivalency to me. The choice isn't necessarily between coal or poor people living in darkness. The choice is between affordable, clean energy (whether we want that to be nuclear, solar, geothermal, whetever--and the discussion over whether any of these options are practical is an argument for another time) or the same unsustainable system of dirty energy that leads to higher costs being born by the poor in the form of high energy costs, ecological degradation (coal plants are most often located in poor neighborhoods), higher costs associated with health risks, greater costs in the form of infrastructure maintenance, etc. And that doesn't mention the costs of getting the coal out of the ground both in environmental costs and in the cost to human health and well being. All these externalized costs to the poor really trashes the idea that restricting coal is a smack to the balls of the poor.

This is not false at all. For the US at least coal is cheaper than anything else. If you want clean energy it costs more than plain vanilla coal energy. Even if you want clean coal it costs more. Things like "ecological degradation" and "health costs" and "risks" are intangibles. If you can't calculate a dollar value for a thing then you can imagine any dollar value you want for a thing. You cannot put health "beyond value" and pretend to be considering costs. The cost of getting coal out of the ground and worker health care is already in the electric bill -- greater enforcement of existing law may be necessary.

The issue is the cost of electricity in the US. Intangibles do not keep the lights on. As to keeping the lights on, the local news has the occasional horrible example of it. In every case the punch line is "tell the power company" so they can help you keep the power on. It is in their interest to connect people with government programs or their own tax deductible programs to keep the power on and the bad press out of the news.

However if one does wish to use the intangible of life and health then industrialization lead to a 15 to 20 year increase in life span. The rate of increase has flattened out since people started "caring" about the environment. I assume it is merely a coincidence but because it is an intangible one can argue for or against it without having to produce evidence either way.

Quote:
A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
Does someone want to accuse me of apologizing for corporations? Show me what I said that does that. It has been an established fact of reality for nearly 150 years that the lower the selling price the greater the profit.

Not necessarily. You need to get beyond marketing 101 to find out that sometimes a lower selling price actually decreases profit. But again, this might be beyond the scope of the topic at hand. Just be assured that profit is a bit more complex than just as a function of selling price.

Of course it is but the point is the same. Were it not for the idolatrous followers of Steve Jobs the company could never have survived with the rotten price/performance ratio of Apple products. Without the DeBeers monopoly diamonds would sell for maybe a quarter their present price. As soon as people caught on to the Sharper Image marketing tactics the company got real in its pricing. Those male "potency" pills were test marketed at prices from high to low until they found the price that maximized profits. There are many other examples.

And I was once familiar with the math that determines a product line which includes price and profit considerations which are more like real world rather than the niche market strategies above. Outside of niche markets, across the broad spectrum of consumer goods, inflation adjusted prices are always falling. In the famous bet, inflation adjusted commodities including natural resources have always been falling giving the lie to a decline in natural resources.

Quote:
As to the question in the OP--Should corporations be considered people? No, they absolutely should not. I do believe that corporations should have well defined advantages (I couldn't bring myself to say rights as only people have rights) but that those advantages do not prioritze corporate interests over individual human interests. Prioritizing corporate interest over individual human interests reifies corporations to the point that humans become mere appendages to corporate goals. Corporatism is truly the reverse of humanism. 

Recall I gave the primary purpose of corporations as persons was in the matter of legal ownership. In my next post I will give the solution to the political issue.

 

Jews stole the land. The owners want it back. That is all anyone needs to know about Israel. That is all there is to know about Israel.

www.ussliberty.org

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The solution to the political issue

harleysportster wrote:
A recent poll that a friend of mine started on Facebook asked the simple question : Should corporations be considered people ?

Response were widely varied.

What do some of you think  and why do you think that way ?

This is not my invention. It is largely copying what exists in the rest of the world. Refinements are obviously required such as a one time exception for new political parties.

The problem is not corporate persons it is with the US political party system.

The primary problem is the fact of party membership and the fiction of a "registered" member of a party.

So here is the first legal reform. Only a registered voter may join a political party.

The second reform: Joining a party means actually becoming a dues paying, card carrying member and nothing else.

The third reform: Only members of a political party may contribute to the party.

The fourth reform: Politicians can only accept funds from the party of which they are a member.

Fifth: A person may change parties only once a year and must wait one year before they can contribute. The one time new party exception would apply here, roughly a new party can have new members and instant contributions only in the first year of its creation.

Sixth: All party membership names and their contributions must be made public within 30 days of the event. No contributions can be made less than 60 days prior to an election.

Corporations cannot vote so they cannot join parties thus cannot contribute to parties or politicians. Individuals can front for corporations but between joining and contributing limits it is one contribution per two year election cycle and people know who and how much. Arm's length PAC rules would stay in place. Rules limiting gratuities would be strengthened.

And above all my fantasy congress would vote all these reforms into law.

Jews stole the land. The owners want it back. That is all anyone needs to know about Israel. That is all there is to know about Israel.

www.ussliberty.org

www.giwersworld.org/made-in-alexandria/index.html

www.giwersworld.org/00_files/zion-hit-points.phtml


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A_Nony_Mouse wrote: The

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:

 

The problem is not corporate persons it is with the US political party system.

The primary problem is the fact of party membership and the fiction of a "registered" member of a party.

So here is the first legal reform. Only a registered voter may join a political party.

The second reform: Joining a party means actually becoming a dues paying, card carrying member and nothing else.

The third reform: Only members of a political party may contribute to the party.

The fourth reform: Politicians can only accept funds from the party of which they are a member.

Fifth: A person may change parties only once a year and must wait one year before they can contribute. The one time new party exception would apply here, roughly a new party can have new members and instant contributions only in the first year of its creation.

Sixth: All party membership names and their contributions must be made public within 30 days of the event. No contributions can be made less than 60 days prior to an election.

Corporations cannot vote so they cannot join parties thus cannot contribute to parties or politicians. Individuals can front for corporations but between joining and contributing limits it is one contribution per two year election cycle and people know who and how much. Arm's length PAC rules would stay in place. Rules limiting gratuities would be strengthened.

And above all my fantasy congress would vote all these reforms into law.

I actually happen to agree with your points on that one. Of course, those reforms would probably never be voted into law.

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.”
― Giordano Bruno


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Question pushes a binary resolution to a non-binary issue

Stop thinking binay.  Don't dismiss out of hand the possibility of having corporations legally classified as people in some senses, and not legally classified as people in others.  There's no real reason you can't have corporations be people when it comes to lawsuits but not people when it comes to campaign contributions.

So ask a better question.  Instead of asking, "Should corporations be considered people?" ask, "In what ways should corporations be considered people, and in what ways should they not be considered people?"  That way you'll be looking at all the possibilities to try and find the best solution, instead of just trying to pick the best of two extremes.

 

The problem with letting corporations contribute financially to speech that isn't advertisement of the corporation and/or its products is that the money in a corporation is multi-owned.  Every stockholder has an interest in advertising to increase profits, so advertising is a fine use of corporate money.  But can anyone point to a corporation in which every stockholder is a republican?  Or a Christian?  Or pro-choice?  When a corporation uses corporate money to finance speech like that, it's using people's money to support causes those people don't support.  It puts the money of the many behind the voices of the few. Thus corporate speech is given more oomph than the portion of owners who actually agree with the message would otherwise have.

Questions for Theists:
http://silverskeptic.blogspot.com/2011/03/consistent-standards.html

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There is no validity to a

There is no validity to a corporation being equivalent to a person in any way, shape, or form.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


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A_Nony_Mouse wrote:In

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
In practice corporations tend to contribute to both parties and both sides even the side against them. This gives them access on the issues and avoids making enemies if only one side gets contributions and the other wins. Rather than bribing politicians this allows politicians to extort both sides of an issue.

Or in other words, corporations are bribing both sides.

 

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
Another version of this is the freshman congressman being quizzed by his new staff on issues he never thought about. "Are you for or against pork belly subsidies?" "I guess I'm against it." "Don't worry, there is money on both sides."

Despite the much ballyhooed bugaboo of corporate advertising for issues and candidates I have yet to see an ad "brought to you by General Electric" or any other such corporation.

Which is exactly what I said--nobody really gives a crap if Megaglomcorp is running ads supporting The Rent Is Too Damn High Party. And GE wouldn't need to state that their ad came from them. They just need to form an astroturf group such as the National Smoker's Alliance or the New Millenium Research Council or CHANGEPAC or even Freedom Works (the major astroturf group behind the Tea Party movement) and run ads under their banner.  

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
Lets be more specific as these are different issues. As I said long term poor is a separate issue and as in the studies the income of the parent is the best predictor.

What I meant by poverty was falling into a period of low or no income and then getting back to normal which is what most poverty programs are geared towards. Again this is the parental income predictor as people do not stay in poverty in the sense I mean it. It is a transient thing. People get back to the predicted income.

I'm going to have to ask for sources on this because I'm not sure that whatever you're saying is true.

I would argue more of your point here but it really isn't germane to the topic. It's a discussion for a different time.

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
This is not false at all. For the US at least coal is cheaper than anything else. If you want clean energy it costs more than plain vanilla coal energy. Even if you want clean coal it costs more. Things like "ecological degradation" and "health costs" and "risks" are intangibles.

Not if you're poor and you have no health insurance they aren't.

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
If you can't calculate a dollar value for a thing then you can imagine any dollar value you want for a thing. You cannot put health "beyond value" and pretend to be considering costs.

I'm sure the dollar value of ecological degradation, health costs, infrastructure maintenance, etc could be figured out (I don't have the time to do it myself). So they aren't beyond value--whatever the f that's supposed to mean.

And nobody is pretending to be considering costs--these are real world costs born by the poorest among us. The poor very often don't have the resources to pursue justice so these costs are just externalized away.

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
The cost of getting coal out of the ground and worker health care is already in the electric bill -- greater enforcement of existing law may be necessary.

I didn't say anything about worker health care or merely getting the coal out of the ground. There are costs to the communities where coal is mined that are again here's the word--externalized by the coal companies. Go take a drive through the coal fields of western Pennsylvania where rivers still run orange with mine runoff and mountaintop removal mining has ruined property values.

A_Nony_Mouse wrote:
However if one does wish to use the intangible of life and health then industrialization lead to a 15 to 20 year increase in life span. The rate of increase has flattened out since people started "caring" about the environment. I assume it is merely a coincidence but because it is an intangible one can argue for or against it without having to produce evidence either way.

This is the whole problem with economics. Because something can't be assigned a value in monetary terms it is often seen as having no value or in being passed off as inconsequential. Yes life is intangible in that it is hard to assign a monetary value to life, but that doesn't mean that life doesn't have value. And health is not at all intangible as it can and is assigned a monetary value. That's why health insurance companies exist.

If you want to talk about life span or more accurately life expectancy since that is how life span is statistically measured then industrialization is most assuredly not the source of the increase. Life expectancy at birth at the beginning of the 20th Century (well into industrialization) was about 46 and by 1998 was 73. It's more likely it was advances in public health (access to health care and nutrition) that led to the increase in life expectancy.

 


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Beyond Saving wrote:Not

Beyond Saving wrote:
Not really that big, a handful of forms. If RRS were to attempt to run political advertisements it would have to register as some type of corporation, (probably a 501c3) to receive that kind of cash without running into problems with tax laws.

Sorry, I guess I forgot my /figurative tag when I said it was "a whole big thing". It is a bit more complicated than just a handful of forms (depending on the state you file in and the status you are seeking). 

And no, RSS would not have to register as a corporation to run political advertisements. And how would they be receiving cash if they are the ones running the ads? 

Beyond Saving wrote:
 Who is talking about unlimited funding of campaigns? Direct contributions to campaigns are highly regulated both for individuals and corporations. That isn't even an issue that is anywhere near the table.

Actually, unlimited funding of campaigns is exactly the issue.

Beyond Saving wrote:
 The problem isn't really the campaign money, the real problem is that our federal government holds so much power and influence that throwing massive amounts of money at politicians is a reasonable business decision because regulations have such a large positive or negative effect on a companies bottom line. If you want less money spent on campaigns, remove the power from DC. The one thing most business people are consistent about is they look for a good ROI, if politicians have nothing they can give in return, companies and rich people aren't going to give them money.

I think you are seeing this backwards. Regulating business is a good thing. The reason that campaign money is a problem is that it leads to the deregulation of business that leads in turn to massive fraud as in the case of the financial bubble or in the degradation of workers' and consumers' rights and safety. If we take away the feds power to regulate business (and enforce those regulations) sure we might see a decrease in campaign giving but that's only because we will be giving the corporations what they want for free.

And I'm sorry but as much as I distrust the gov't,  I trust the gov't a lot more than I do corporations to look out for my interests.


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Aghast wrote:And no, RSS

Aghast wrote:

And no, RSS would not have to register as a corporation to run political advertisements. And how would they be receiving cash if they are the ones running the ads? 

Sapient doesn't have the money to run campaign ads. If he did, he could simply pay for it as an individual. Since he does not, he would have to raise large sums of money for the purpose of purchasing those ads. When you start receiving that kind of money, you have to tell the IRS how you got it and you may or may not have to pay taxes on it.

 

I suppose he could simply say he was selling the services of the site and pay personal income taxes on the money then buy the ad (you would have to double check with a lawyer on that one). But why? He can register as a non-profit organization and be tax-exempt. So strictly speaking, he might not have to, but it would certainly be the logical thing to do. 

 

Aghast wrote:

Actually, unlimited funding of campaigns is exactly the issue.

Where? Donations to campaigns are strictly regulated regardless of who is donating. Independent expenditures can be unlimited but those ads cannot directly support or directly oppose a specific candidate. If you want to write Bama a $1 million check you can't. If you want to pay $1 million to run advertisements discussing Bamacare I believe you can as long as they follow the FCC guidelines (which I have no idea exactly what those are)

 

Aghast wrote:

And I'm sorry but as much as I distrust the gov't,  I trust the gov't a lot more than I do corporations to look out for my interests.

Then you need to study your history. Government has a monopoly on force and history has shown that government force being abused can be extremely dangerous to life and liberty. Corporations can be very dangerous if they control government force, but so can any individual. The government can cause you far more harm than a corporation can without using the government.

 

As long as basic police protection exists to protect from violence/theft/fraud the only way a corporation has power over you is if you choose to purchase whatever product they sell. The corporation only exists as long as you voluntarily choose to buy their product, so while the corporation isn't the slightest bit interested in what your best interests are they have a lot of incentive to provide you with products that you believe are in your best interest. 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Beyond Saving wrote: You do

Beyond Saving wrote:

 You do realize that the corporate personhood that is legally recognized is precisely the reason why you can sue a company? If a company is not recognized as an entity in and of itself you would have to sue all the individuals involved in whatever beef you had with the company. The result would be a legal nightmare. Corporations are not people in the strict sense of the word, but are and should be people in the legal sense. Those of you who are vociferously speaking against corporate personhood would probably do well to do a little research on what it means in a legal context. 

 

And why shouldn't corporations be free to run political advertisements? You realize that if RRS decided to raise money to run a political advertisement against a theocrat running for office who vowed to pass a law outlawing atheism, we would be a corporation in the eyes of the law. Any time a group of people get together for a common purpose and pool their resources it is a corporation. If corporations were banned from buying political advertising, they only people who could run political advertisements would be wealthy individuals. Anyone without enough money to pay for an ad personally wouldn't have the option of joining with others of like mind to raise the money. I suppose you could try to ban only for profit corporations from political advertising/lobbying but I don't see the point.

 

This movement that has been building towards removing private funding of campaigns and worse, banning private individuals or groups from making political advertisements, is extremely alarming to me. Are you going to have it publicly funded where the people who decide where the money is going to go are the people with political power? Sounds like letting the fox guard the hen house to me.

 

Nice try, but the semantic legalese, you try to use here doesn't wash in the face of the founders intent of defaulting to protecting those with less power from those with more power to prevent monopolies of power.

You should be allowed to sue a company. They can be big, and have fleets of lawyers. That size of organization and pooling of money should not be protected from challenges from those with less money or power.

It is sick that you would use the right to sue to justify big business monopolizing politics to flood it with money.

If a toy company has knowingly made a defective toy and a child dies from it, they are liable as a company. How the fuck you think that should entitle them to fund politics in an unlimited manor by pawing it off on the word "person" is complete bullshit.

The bigger picture is about POWER in both cases. You have the right to sue a company because they are not above the law, or should not be, just because they can pool their money and buy fleets of lawyers.  Nor should money give you the right to buy politicians.

The reason people in big business want to have the entire company be called a "person" isn't because they are worried about lawsuits, most of the time they can drag it through the system, or pay it off so quickly, that it barely puts a dent in t heir profits. The reason they want to be treated like a "person" is so that they can flood politics with money so they can make the laws to get away with rigging the game.

Corporations are NOT people. Your argument is merely a form of hostage taking and blackmail. "If you wont call me a person(even though I am really one of many, I won't let you sue my company).

You don't nor should you have to call a company a "person" to sue it. What you are doing in such a suit is punishing the CLIMATE fostered in that company that caused the damage you suffer. It doesn't require calling a company a "person" to do that. The reality is that individuals make up companies, what is called a "person" is merely the idea that when you work for the company, you represent the company. THAT is the reality.

 A bully is a bully is a bully. Whether it was the white majority during the 60s, or the Cock brothers. Yea I said it. Those assholes are bullies because of their money. The climate of our economy and our global downfall is because of assholes like them who pay off lawmakers and bully the rest of the population. Money equals power and as long as it does, there will ALWAYS be potential abuse of power.

It is semantically absurd to call, even a group of protesters "a person". So it would be equally absurd to call a group of people who work for one company "a person".

It is NOT absurd to protect ANY person from one other person or group of people when they are being bullied by power.

If our law language is set up the way you say, it needs to change. It sets up a rigged game where the big guy wins even when they lose. "Go ahead, sue me, I'll simply buy off lawmakers to cover my losses in the future".

 

 

 

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Beyond Saving wrote:Then you

Beyond Saving wrote:
Then you need to study your history. Government has a monopoly on force

Alas, my friend, history itself does not support this bumper sticker slogan. Here in the US we have this thing called the Second Amendment to the US Constitution which is the second item in what is termed the Bill of Rights. This item makes sure that the governmnet does not in fact have a monopoly on force but instead allows for the individual or group use of force by non-governemental entities. The right to bear arms does not just mean you can walk around with a weapon but rather that you have the right to use that weapon to defend yourself, your family, and your property. Along with that some states (31 if I remember correctly which is a majority of them) have adopted castle doctrines and definitions of justifiable homicide which do in action guarantee the right to use force.

Historically speaking corporations have often used legal force to further their own interests such as when they used private police forces to control their workers or to break unions or strikes. I suggest you look into the history of groups like the Pinkertons or the Coal and Iron Police.

The history of slavery in the US also suggests that history might not be as amenable to your slogan as you would thing. Certainly the militias formed to chase escaped slaves were not governmental yet faced no legal consequences for deploying force against slaves. This is also true of the Ku Klux Klan both in the south and the north who were free to use force to further their own interests often with overt support with government officials many of whom were members of their local Klaverns.

These are only a handful of examples from history but are certainly enough to show that the study of history does not support the idea that government has a monopoly on force.

 

Beyond Saving wrote:
and history has shown that government force being abused can be extremely dangerous to life and liberty. Corporations can be very dangerous if they control government force, but so can any individual. The government can cause you far more harm than a corporation can without using the government.

I'm not sure that this is supported in any way. I like how you mention and then quickly disregard that part where "Corporations can be very dangerous if they control government force but so can any individual". First, while indivuals may have more direct influence on me, no individual has the vast scope and power that either corporations or even the government has to effect my life. The question here is not just about force though--it's about how much effect and influence corporations have over my day to day life versus how much the government has.  

 

Beyond Saving wrote:
As long as basic police protection exists to protect from violence/theft/fraud the only way a corporation has power over you is if you choose to purchase whatever product they sell.

Simply untrue. Every action a corporation takes as an entity effects not only the immediate community in which its factories, storefronts, headquarters acts but also the larger social, political, and economic milieu. Let's take the example of a factory. When a corporation decides to build a factory it has several efects on the communitty where it chooses to build that factory. Some are positive such as the creation of jobs or the expansion on the local tax base. Some are negative such as increased environmental degradation or extra pressure on local infrastructure. And of course, often times corporations negotiate tax breaks that cause its tax bill to be far below the costs it imposes on the local community. Then if that factory is the only source of jobs in an area the corporation has an unparalleled ability to shape local ordinances as well as state laws and regulations to its own advantage. Far from government controlling business it is business that is more likely to control how government operates especially since many of the people who people our government institutions are businesspeople. So over the life of that hypothetical factory the corporations are able to negotiate lower local taxes, lower prices for utilities, and in the case of a non-union factory more favorable labor regulations (though this is also often true in union factories just not to the same extent). Then when the corporation moves its factory to Sai-Pan or Mexico or China all those hundreds of people who worked there are suddenly out of work. Thus services such as unemployment or food stamps must be expanded to cover a growing unemployed population. In places where the factory was the major employer what happens is that the community's buying power drops through the floor. No longer can people afford to shop at not only the local stores but also the big box stores. So the Best Buys and Circuit Cities and Safeways all close down further increasing local unemployment rates and forcing people to travel farther and farther away to purchase groceries or medical care or even luxury goods. In fact, whole communities have been devastated not by government action but by the whims of corporations (I would recommend a great book on US industrial history titled The Deindustrialization of America by Barry Bluestone and Bennett Harrison).

Also, there is the way corporations control not just the material basis of human life but also the way they control the ideal basis of human life. The media after all is run by corporations. And it is the media that guides not only how we receive information but also in how we interpret that information through how it chooses to present the information. For instance many people believe that crime and violence are at an all time high when in fact the opposite is really true. It is the corporate decision to feature stories on death and violence and child killers and kidnappers that have led people to hold this false belief (again I feel compelled to recommend a great book on the subject--this time The Culture of Fear by Barry Glassner). And if you really want to doubt how the corporate media influences if not outright controls how people view reality then just wait a little while as Fox News starts its annual War on Christmas bullshit and you can see directly how we atheists are demonized over falsehoods and lies. 


Beyond Saving wrote:
The corporation only exists as long as you voluntarily choose to buy their product, so while the corporation isn't the slightest bit interested in what your best interests are they have a lot of incentive to provide you with products that you believe are in your best interest.

Hahahahahahaha! Oh my non-existent god that's rich. Corporations don't have any incentive to provide you with what is in your best interest. Do they have any incentive to even remotely consider their workers' best interest? The best interest of the communities in which they operate? Most often they have just convinced people that corporate interests are peoples' best interest. While I'm no Marxist myself, Marx was really on to something when he discussed false consciousness.

So yeah, as much as I distrust the government (and I do mistrust them) I have far far less trust in corporations to look out for my interests than I do for the government to do so. After all, it is government's job to look out after all our interests in general and theoretically to be reactive to citizen imput (and certainly this is more possible on local levels than on the state or federal level) and needs. The job of corporations are to look out for merely the needs and interests of the shareholders regardless of how that effects the larger society in which they are allowed to act.


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Aghast wrote:Alas, my

Aghast wrote:

Alas, my friend, history itself does not support this bumper sticker slogan. Here in the US we have this thing called the Second Amendment to the US Constitution which is the second item in what is termed the Bill of Rights. This item makes sure that the governmnet does not in fact have a monopoly on force but instead allows for the individual or group use of force by non-governemental entities. The right to bear arms does not just mean you can walk around with a weapon but rather that you have the right to use that weapon to defend yourself, your family, and your property. Along with that some states (31 if I remember correctly which is a majority of them) have adopted castle doctrines and definitions of justifiable homicide which do in action guarantee the right to use force.

Yet even when you choose to use that force you will be going to a government court to prove it was justifiable. Ultimately, it is the government that decides which force is justified and which isn't. The only exception the second amendment attempts to make is to make it possible for the civilian population to overthrow the government. In practice, I don't think it helps much since government soldiers are far better equipped than any citizen can legally be. 

 

Aghast wrote:

Historically speaking corporations have often used legal force to further their own interests such as when they used private police forces to control their workers or to break unions or strikes. I suggest you look into the history of groups like the Pinkertons or the Coal and Iron Police.

The history of slavery in the US also suggests that history might not be as amenable to your slogan as you would thing. Certainly the militias formed to chase escaped slaves were not governmental yet faced no legal consequences for deploying force against slaves. This is also true of the Ku Klux Klan both in the south and the north who were free to use force to further their own interests often with overt support with government officials many of whom were members of their local Klaverns.

So the government failed to enforce its obligation. Willingly or because of a practical inability to do so. Walmart isn't going to come to your door with a gun to force you to but their products. If they did, I would fully support throwing the people involved in jail.

 

Aghast wrote:

I'm not sure that this is supported in any way. I like how you mention and then quickly disregard that part where "Corporations can be very dangerous if they control government force but so can any individual". First, while indivuals may have more direct influence on me, no individual has the vast scope and power that either corporations or even the government has to effect my life. The question here is not just about force though--it's about how much effect and influence corporations have over my day to day life versus how much the government has.  

See the examples you mentioned yourself above. When any group or individual is placed above the law it is a problem and is dangerous. How does any corporation have influence directly over your life without using the government in the form of laws/regulation and the corporation itself is obeying the law?

 

The government controls what products I can and cannot buy, it controls what food I can buy, it controls where I can gamble, where I can smoke, where I can carry my gun even with a permit, where and when I can shoot a squirrel, what type of bullet I have to use to kill a duck, what I can watch on tv, who I can loan money to, how my house must be built, how deep my well must be dug, whether or not I can build on my land at all etc. Exactly what part of my day to day life is NOT affected by government regulation?

 

If I disobey any of them I am faced with at least a fine, if I refuse to pay the fine I eventually have to face jail time, if I resist serving my jail time eventually police will track me down to arrest me, if I resist arrest they use physical force to detain me and if I am effectively resisting the physical detainment I may be shot. 

 

What corporation has anywhere near that power? If I refuse to do any business with any given corporation all they can do is advertise and attempt to use persuasion to change my mind. 

 

Aghast wrote:

 And of course, often times corporations negotiate tax breaks that cause its tax bill to be far below the costs it imposes on the local community.

And I agree that should not be allowed. Everyone should pay the exact same tax rate regardless of who they are and whether it is a corporation or an individual. This is a problem of a corporation using government to get a better deal then their competitors.

 

Aghast wrote:

Then if that factory is the only source of jobs in an area the corporation has an unparalleled ability to shape local ordinances as well as state laws and regulations to its own advantage.

Again, the problem is the corporation using government as a tool.

 

Aghast wrote:

Far from government controlling business it is business that is more likely to control how government operates especially since many of the people who people our government institutions are businesspeople. So over the life of that hypothetical factory the corporations are able to negotiate lower local taxes, lower prices for utilities, and in the case of a non-union factory more favorable labor regulations (though this is also often true in union factories just not to the same extent).

 

Again, the problem is the corporation using government as a tool. 

 

Aghast wrote:

Then when the corporation moves its factory to Sai-Pan or Mexico or China all those hundreds of people who worked there are suddenly out of work. Thus services such as unemployment or food stamps must be expanded to cover a growing unemployed population.

Why?

 

Aghast wrote:

In places where the factory was the major employer what happens is that the community's buying power drops through the floor. No longer can people afford to shop at not only the local stores but also the big box stores. So the Best Buys and Circuit Cities and Safeways all close down further increasing local unemployment rates and forcing people to travel farther and farther away to purchase groceries or medical care or even luxury goods. In fact, whole communities have been devastated not by government action but by the whims of corporations (I would recommend a great book on US industrial history titled The Deindustrialization of America by Barry Bluestone and Bennett Harrison).

 

Communities that generally came into existence solely to support that particular business. Sometimes a new business is able to take advantage of the available and now cheaper labor, sometimes population centers need to move to a different location. Don't get me wrong, it sucks when a major employer leaves an area, but what is your solution? Force them to stay in business even if they are going bankrupt? Throw government money at them? Bribe them with better tax deals? I think all those options generally do more harm than good long term. If there are no jobs eventually the population will move somewhere that needs jobs or someone will start a new business. The transition sucks, but there is no way to avoid it, attempts to avoid it often lead to making the transition period longer. 

 

Aghast wrote:

Also, there is the way corporations control not just the material basis of human life but also the way they control the ideal basis of human life. The media after all is run by corporations. And it is the media that guides not only how we receive information but also in how we interpret that information through how it chooses to present the information. For instance many people believe that crime and violence are at an all time high when in fact the opposite is really true. It is the corporate decision to feature stories on death and violence and child killers and kidnappers that have led people to hold this false belief (again I feel compelled to recommend a great book on the subject--this time The Culture of Fear by Barry Glassner). And if you really want to doubt how the corporate media influences if not outright controls how people view reality then just wait a little while as Fox News starts its annual War on Christmas bullshit and you can see directly how we atheists are demonized over falsehoods and lies. 

And you have a large variety of media outlets to choose from. One corporation hardly has that much control over what news you get. Especially since the growth of the internet. Some people are voluntarily ignorant because they have a single news source or don't pay attention. But do you seriously believe that a corporation could keep significant facts secret from those who wanted to know? Fox news get 3-4 million viewers on their most watched shows. Pretty insignificant compared to our 200+ million adult population. Most people don't take the time or the effort to know what is going on, which is why our politicians get away with what they have been doing.

 

 

Aghast wrote:

Beyond Saving wrote:
The corporation only exists as long as you voluntarily choose to buy their product, so while the corporation isn't the slightest bit interested in what your best interests are they have a lot of incentive to provide you with products that you believe are in your best interest.

Hahahahahahaha! Oh my non-existent god that's rich. Corporations don't have any incentive to provide you with what is in your best interest.

If enough people don't buy their products they go bankrupt and cease to exist. They don't have your best interest in mind, they have profit in mind. Why should they have your best interest in mind? They provide you with products they believe you will buy. Their sole function is to provide you with those products. It is your responsibility to determine which products you need. When a company provides enough people with a desired product they make a profit. How does a company exist without making a profit? (other than getting money from government)

 

Aghast wrote:

Do they have any incentive to even remotely consider their workers' best interest?

Yes, because workers can quit at any time and hiring has a cost associated with it. The amount of incentive to please the worker is directly proportional to how difficult it would be to replace them. Easily replaced workers are paid far less, workers that are difficult to replace get golden handcuffs and parachutes. 

 

Aghast wrote:

The best interest of the communities in which they operate?

Only to the extent that a community happy with a local business is more willing to buy products there. The chamber of commerce generally does a lot of work in communities in an attempt to increase goodwill and large businesses often make substantial investments in communities for the same reason. Chances are you have some park, theater, stadium, parade or other public benefit in your community that was paid for by a business/businesses for this reason. But again, why should they? It isn't a corporations job to provide for a community, it is their job to provide products and services you desire. It is the community and the individuals in it responsible for deciding what products they want to buy and therefore which businesses make money and which ones don't. Every time you decide to buy a product, you are affirming a desire for a particular company to exist. 

 

Aghast wrote:

Most often they have just convinced people that corporate interests are peoples' best interest. While I'm no Marxist myself, Marx was really on to something when he discussed false consciousness.

I wish you could teach me the secret method to brainwash people to buy my products, I could be so much richer. Advertising works to an extent but it still requires a demand for the product and the product has to be pleasing to the consumer if the company is going to survive long term. Businesses fail all the time because they couldn't find the expected demand for their product. Do all of them simply not know the secret?

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Corporations

 Let us not forget that corporations are made up of fine ladies and gentlemen.


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I am probably going to piss

I am probably going to piss some people off but I will say anyway.  First, the reason corporations were even declared persons and given a form of legal personhood was because prior to that ruling, people were being hurt, property damage was happening and when anybody would be tried in civil court, there would be an elaborate shell game and the corporations NEVER lost. 

Second, according to the constutution, only a person can be held liable under the law.   In other words, you can only sue a person.  In a corporation, especially a large one with many employees, if they were following orders of the management and something happened, who do you assign liability to?  THAT is why the courts ruled they were persons.  It was for the protection of the public BELEIVE IT OR NOT.  Prior to that ruling, they got away with murder, after, there was legal redress possible.  If you don't think so...don't tell Erin Brockovich...she beat the living crap out of them in court.

Before you say....'BUT THEY CANNOT VOTE'....NO, but neither can a live living breathing child.  The personhood of a corporation is much like that of a child or someone who is mentally handicapped.  They cannot speak for themselves and must have representatives who speak for them and people to further the interests of that corporation.  If you say they are not born or cannot die...not entirely true.  They are formed and officially have a date of their founding and they can die but the disloution of the corporation.  They can even suffer a death penalty.  Thier corporate charter can be revoked by an act of regulation or by a legislative body under who's jurisdiction they fall under. 

Not all corporations are those so-called evil monsters you want to imagine.  They are there to do what their charter has set forth for them to do.  They can have some shitty management.  They can have some inept management.  I have seen both.  I have also seen some decent people working for and be corporate officers. 


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Quote: In a corporation,

Quote:
In a corporation, especially a large one with many employees, if they were following orders of the management and something happened, who do you assign liability to?

Everyone who took part in criminal activity should be punished. Ignorance of the law is not a defence.
Those directly responsible for allowing or even participating in illegal activities (management) should receive the harshest penalty, as its their responsibility to prevent such activity, not promote it.
I have no interest in allowing the rich to get away with murder and forcing the poor to pay the penalty. Which, believe it or not, is the system we currently use.

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Vastet wrote:Quote: In a

Vastet wrote:
Quote:
In a corporation, especially a large one with many employees, if they were following orders of the management and something happened, who do you assign liability to?
Everyone who took part in criminal activity should be punished. Ignorance of the law is not a defence. Those directly responsible for allowing or even participating in illegal activities (management) should receive the harshest penalty, as its their responsibility to prevent such activity, not promote it. I have no interest in allowing the rich to get away with murder and forcing the poor to pay the penalty. Which, believe it or not, is the system we currently use.

Not according to some. It's our fault simply because not all of us want to or need to wipe our asses with 1,000 dollar bills. You and I are just jealous and simply want to rob the rich because we are too lazy.

No no Vaset. Lets just accept our corporate overlords because they know what is best for all of us. I am looking forward to the day when they get rid of the minimum wage. Its going to be so much fun looking like China and India. No sleep, locked in unsafe factories working for pennies a day. But how will those CEOs and shareholders survive? We just have no compassion for them.

How heartless of us to use the same "free speech" and voting they do. How selfish of us to think we have any rights.Our existence is only to make them rich. It's for the greater good Vaset. Why do you have such a problem with greed? How silly of you to care about others.

Oh say can you see

By the Dawns early light

What so proudly we hail

Golden arches and Godman Sacs

Whose Wall Street and big banks

Fleeced tax payers over night

And the bail outs we paid

Didn't teach them a god  damned thing

Oh say when will these fat cats

Get a fucking clueeeeeeee

Their "Let them eat cake"

Is going to be our country's doom

 

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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Quote:Not all corporations

Quote:
Not all corporations are those so-called evil monsters you want to imagine

What makes you think I think that? There are however, far too many bad players at the top. If most companies thought like my prior owners where I work, our country would not be in this mess.

 

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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Vastet wrote:Quote: In a

Vastet wrote:
Quote:
In a corporation, especially a large one with many employees, if they were following orders of the management and something happened, who do you assign liability to?
Everyone who took part in criminal activity should be punished. Ignorance of the law is not a defence. Those directly responsible for allowing or even participating in illegal activities (management) should receive the harshest penalty, as its their responsibility to prevent such activity, not promote it. I have no interest in allowing the rich to get away with murder and forcing the poor to pay the penalty. Which, believe it or not, is the system we currently use.

You are correct in theory, but there is also something that is very elusive when trying to prove and that is what is referred to "Criminal Intent," or "intent to do harm".  If you ever get the opportunity to look at some history, the corporations prior to the ruling way back in the 1860's when the ruling was made, it was all but impossible to prove wrong doing unless it was beyond blatant and thus, simply on lack of solid evidence, few if any people ever were convicted or determination as to decisions that led to the wrong doing.  The only way to ensure a just outcome was to rule that corporations were people. 

 


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Hmm....did somebody pee in

Hmm....did somebody pee in your Cherios this morning?  Somebody has anger issues.  I suggest a good therapist would help that anger. 

 

Oh and I can tell you learned your lessons from Saul Alinsky well.  Did you pull your hand book, Rules for Radicals out when responding to my post? 

 

Did I even mention your screen name?  Answer....NOOOOOOOO DUH!

 

But since your trying to mischaracterize me, I will correct your perception.  First, I am vehemently against the bailouts.  Second, I would be for revoking the corporate charters of all the banks who fucked people over and jailing the fidicuaries and management responsible for the wrong doing.  Third, you were predictable.  I was right, what I posted would piss some people off...LOL. 

 

Oh...when you use the phrase 'The Rich'....look at what you are saying.  Just replace 'the Rich' with 'the Jews' and keep your normal rhetoric and guess what....you come across sounding like that funny little German guy who marched with a goose step. 

 

You have a nice day.  Eye-wink


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Brian37 wrote:Quote:Not all

Brian37 wrote:

Quote:
Not all corporations are those so-called evil monsters you want to imagine

What makes you think I think that? There are however, far too many bad players at the top. If most companies thought like my prior owners where I work, our country would not be in this mess.

 

 

Ahhh..did I say your screen name there Brian 37?  I repeat....NOOOOOOOOOOOO!  DUH! You got a real anger issue or a guilty conscience.  I suggest you get a therapist for it. 


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Beyond Saving wrote: You do

Beyond Saving wrote:

 You do realize that the corporate personhood that is legally recognized is precisely the reason why you can sue a company? If a company is not recognized as an entity in and of itself you would have to sue all the individuals involved in whatever beef you had with the company. The result would be a legal nightmare. Corporations are not people in the strict sense of the word, but are and should be people in the legal sense. Those of you who are vociferously speaking against corporate personhood would probably do well to do a little research on what it means in a legal context. 

 

And why shouldn't corporations be free to run political advertisements? You realize that if RRS decided to raise money to run a political advertisement against a theocrat running for office who vowed to pass a law outlawing atheism, we would be a corporation in the eyes of the law. Any time a group of people get together for a common purpose and pool their resources it is a corporation. If corporations were banned from buying political advertising, they only people who could run political advertisements would be wealthy individuals. Anyone without enough money to pay for an ad personally wouldn't have the option of joining with others of like mind to raise the money. I suppose you could try to ban only for profit corporations from political advertising/lobbying but I don't see the point.

 

This movement that has been building towards removing private funding of campaigns and worse, banning private individuals or groups from making political advertisements, is extremely alarming to me. Are you going to have it publicly funded where the people who decide where the money is going to go are the people with political power? Sounds like letting the fox guard the hen house to me.

 

You do realize that legally recognized corporate personhood is precisely the reason why they can buy judges and politicians to keep them from getting sued?

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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jcgadfly wrote:You do

jcgadfly wrote:

You do realize that legally recognized corporate personhood is precisely the reason why they can buy judges and politicians to keep them from getting sued?

Exactly which corporation bought which judge? Corporations get sued all the time and sometimes lose but usually settle. If they are buying off all these judges, why are they so biased towards settling to even stupid lawsuits?

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Beyond Saving wrote:jcgadfly

Beyond Saving wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

You do realize that legally recognized corporate personhood is precisely the reason why they can buy judges and politicians to keep them from getting sued?

Exactly which corporation bought which judge? Corporations get sued all the time and sometimes lose but usually settle. If they are buying off all these judges, why are they so biased towards settling to even stupid lawsuits?

You mean because I can't rattle off names of judges and corporations there have been no cases of corporations influencing judges and politicians?

 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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jcgadfly wrote:Beyond Saving

jcgadfly wrote:

Beyond Saving wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

You do realize that legally recognized corporate personhood is precisely the reason why they can buy judges and politicians to keep them from getting sued?

Exactly which corporation bought which judge? Corporations get sued all the time and sometimes lose but usually settle. If they are buying off all these judges, why are they so biased towards settling to even stupid lawsuits?

You mean because I can't rattle off names of judges and corporations there have been no cases of corporations influencing judges and politicians?

 

 

No I mean it isn't nearly as common an occurence as you pretend. It is highly illegal and rare. When there is proof that a judge has been bribed, the are removed. 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Beyond Saving wrote:jcgadfly

Beyond Saving wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Beyond Saving wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

You do realize that legally recognized corporate personhood is precisely the reason why they can buy judges and politicians to keep them from getting sued?

Exactly which corporation bought which judge? Corporations get sued all the time and sometimes lose but usually settle. If they are buying off all these judges, why are they so biased towards settling to even stupid lawsuits?

You mean because I can't rattle off names of judges and corporations there have been no cases of corporations influencing judges and politicians?

 

But the briber is unpunished...

 

 

No I mean it isn't nearly as common an occurence as you pretend. It is highly illegal and rare. When there is proof that a judge has been bribed, the are removed. 

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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jcgadfly wrote:But the

jcgadfly wrote:

But the briber is unpunished...

Where? Any evidence of that? Because I haven't seen it other than naked assertions. 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Burnedout wrote:You are

Burnedout wrote:
You are correct in theory, but there is also something that is very elusive when trying to prove and that is what is referred to "Criminal Intent," or "intent to do harm".  If you ever get the opportunity to look at some history, the corporations prior to the ruling way back in the 1860's when the ruling was made, it was all but impossible to prove wrong doing unless it was beyond blatant and thus, simply on lack of solid evidence, few if any people ever were convicted or determination as to decisions that led to the wrong doing.  The only way to ensure a just outcome was to rule that corporations were people. 

Transparency laws and independent investigations coupled with use of today's technology invalidate your objection. And the solution used still causes more harm to the little guy, so of what value is it anyway?

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


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Beyond Saving wrote:jcgadfly

Beyond Saving wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

But the briber is unpunished...

Where? Any evidence of that? Because I haven't seen it other than naked assertions. 

Really, do you believe settling out of court is a punishment?

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
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Vastet wrote:Burnedout

Vastet wrote:
Burnedout wrote:
You are correct in theory, but there is also something that is very elusive when trying to prove and that is what is referred to "Criminal Intent," or "intent to do harm".  If you ever get the opportunity to look at some history, the corporations prior to the ruling way back in the 1860's when the ruling was made, it was all but impossible to prove wrong doing unless it was beyond blatant and thus, simply on lack of solid evidence, few if any people ever were convicted or determination as to decisions that led to the wrong doing.  The only way to ensure a just outcome was to rule that corporations were people. 
Transparency laws and independent investigations coupled with use of today's technology invalidate your objection. And the solution used still causes more harm to the little guy, so of what value is it anyway?

You are making an assumption and an untested one at best.  The one thing that is sure is that we KNOW what has happened in the past prior to the ruling.  When you try to play with the law, you are effectively playing with people's lives and if there is a flaw in the legal system, more than just this or any similar case gets hurt.  It should be tested before invalidating a tried and true method.  Granted, the current solution is not perfect and very far from it,....it still beats what was had before by a long shot.  Remember, you monkey with the constitution, you are playing with fire. 

 


Vastet
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Quote:You are making an

Quote:
You are making an assumption and an untested one at best

Maybe, but by decrying it without justification you are doing the same. How about explaining why full transparency, new and enforced laws, and surveillance technology will not achieve a better system.

Also, that what we have is better than what we did is your opinion. I don't agree. And it is still broken even if I did. So why not fix it? What is so bad about punishing the people who commit the crime instead of their underlings? What's so good about punishing a company when the brass uses company finances to defend themselves before evacuating with all or most of their money and the workers lose their livelihoods?

I see nothing good or useful about the system as it is. Absolutely nothing.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


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Vastet wrote:Quote:You are

Vastet wrote:
Quote:
You are making an assumption and an untested one at best
Maybe, but by decrying it without justification you are doing the same. How about explaining why full transparency, new and enforced laws, and surveillance technology will not achieve a better system. Also, that what we have is better than what we did is your opinion. I don't agree. And it is still broken even if I did. So why not fix it? What is so bad about punishing the people who commit the crime instead of their underlings? What's so good about punishing a company when the brass uses company finances to defend themselves before evacuating with all or most of their money and the workers lose their livelihoods? I see nothing good or useful about the system as it is. Absolutely nothing.

 

I am all for full transparency.  New laws need to be vetted very well so as not to infringe on our constitutional rights.  I am not so quick to say  that we need new laws considering, and it is my contention, the lawmakers we have now of any party are mostly idiots who are bought and paid for.  I agree we should fix it.  I simply advocate a very slow approach.  For every new technology invented, there is a new one that thwarts it.  If you really want to punish some of the bastards who fuck people over in big corporations, especially these banks, a little person can do one thing.....  Every hear of a lien?  You have to do some research, but what you do is locate some piece of real estate and go down to the county courthouse where the property is located and file a lien against it.  That lien will stay on until it is paid.  If it is an incorrect lien, the person to whom it was filed against has to go to court to have it removed and it is a MAJOR hassle.  There is a state court judge in NY who found out he had liens placed against his home of a nature like this and NO KIDDING...LOL....they totaled to over FOR REAL....$1 Trillion.  It was reported that so many people filed liens that it will take him over 10 years of going to court to get them all removed.  He and his heirs will be unable to sell that house until those liens are resolved.  Likewise so could this be done to the asshole corporate CEO's or management.  There is always ways to beat the bastards.   


Vastet
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All well and good, but

All well and good, but against my ethics. I don't favour excessive punishment which merely causes more problems. I favour levelling the playing field. I'd much rather everyone be comfortable in their finances than tracking people down and harassing them through legal loopholes.

I agree current lawmakers aren't up to the task. We need new criteria to even become a lawmaker to start fixing the system. Or a revolution. Or both.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


Sage_Override
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A corporation is an evil

A corporation is an evil entity designed to consume.

 

The fat cats running these corporations are greedy and bigoted.

 

The people consuming the goods from said corporations are left with little options where to get the best deals on products and refuse to spend extra to support communities.

 

Ohai, Wal-Mart, didn't see you there!

"When the majority believes in what is false, the truth becomes a quest." - Me