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Forum Post: Occupying Corporations: How to Cut Corporate Power

Posted 2 years ago on Feb. 8, 2012, 2:37 p.m. EST by GildasSapiens (266)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

"Bringing corporations down to controllable size is a gargantuan task, but an absolute necessity if there is to be any hope for democracy. “Corporations have worked the courts mercilessly since 1819 to take a wide variety of constitutional rights that were designed to cover only people.” In one 30-year period, “African Americans lost their legal personhood, while corporations acquired theirs.” This historical crime must be reversed."

http://blackagendareport.com/content/occupying-corporations-how-cut-corporate-power

MegaCorporations are the 1%'s Economic WMD's against the 99%!

47 Comments

47 Comments


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[-] 3 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

I could agree on that statement, but we tend to forget, it is not just African Americans who lost their legal person hood (nationality) as defined by established laws. So were millions of individuals who resided here at the same time as well as those who came after. It is not about color, it is about economics. If you study history more thorough one can find that this plan was global, not just here in America. All races and nations have a greedy side! So, what has taken place is that ALL individuals are being stripped of their rights here and now. So we must understand we are getting a taste of what has been in existence since mankind could form individuals into "corporate" groups !

[-] 2 points by Nevada1 (4784) 2 years ago

HiGildasSapiens, Thank you for post and links. Best Regards, Nevada

[-] 2 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

I like corporations. They are just a group of people that join together in order to achieve some great thing. Like Google, or Apple, or the Church of Latter Day Saints (Yes they are incorporated). The good news is that if a corporation does a lousy job competitors eat their lunch and they go out of business. Government, on the other hand, can go on day after day producing the same crappy product, charge outrageous prices, deliver poor service and continue in business forever. Or what seems like forever.

BTW, OWS was incorporated in October, 2011

[-] 4 points by elf3 (2720) 2 years ago

Do you think there is a separation of corporation and government ?- because that's my problem - nothing wrong with capitalism. HUGE Problems with Corporatism. What happens when the board of Google also has someone who sits on the FCC or the head of the worlds leading chemical companies sit on the EPA? What happens when those companies now have the power to regulate their competitors out of business by making laws or sending someone from their company to congress with their money to make a law that stifles the competition and makes the citizen comply? Do you have a problem with that?

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

I don't believe that people are equal. Some people are smarter, stronger, taller, shorter, born to rich parents, or born in a slum. That's just a fact.

Because we are not equal and are free to pursue self interest there will be un-equal wealth and un-equal influence in Gov and other institutions like Universities.

So what can we do about this?

Solution 1: Give the Gov power to force equality. The price of this is freedom. Solution 2: Minimize the effect that these institutions can have on our lives. The price that we pay for this is security.

As Ben Franklin put it: "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety"

Right now we seem to settle for a bit of both solutions, however of late we favor door number 1.

[-] 1 points by GildasSapiens (266) 2 years ago

I agree totally with your points.

[-] 3 points by freehorseman (267) from Miles City, Mt 2 years ago

Goverment is a tool of the corporations.If the corporations do not like a function of our goverment than the Corporations see to it that the particular gov dept is crap.If the corps like it ie defense than it is wonderful. A goverment controlled by it's corporations is Facism.A economy controled by its goverment is socialism. When both are controlled by it's people it is some sort of Democracy.

[-] 0 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

If you limit the power of Gov you will reduce the impact of Gov influence by Corps or anything else. The size, incompetence, power, and intrusion on peoples lives by the Gov is the problem.

Big governments rule over little people.

[-] 2 points by GildasSapiens (266) 2 years ago

"I like corporations ... Like Google, or Apple, or the Church of Latter Day Saints": Good for you - you probably orgasm over corporations like Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, Citigroup, BankOfAmerica, AIG, Halliburton, Blackwater/Xe, BP, Exxon-Mobil, GM, Chrysler, & The Church of Scientology.

I don't like corporations like those.

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

Can we live without the wise-cracks?

Do you trust Gov to decide which Corps are good and bad? You should make that judgement. Don't let Gov steal your liberty and control which Corps win and which to fail. Let the people make those decisions. The Gov has demonstrated little ability to make good judgments on this front (Solyndra).

How can we as individuals promote the businesses that we admire?

[-] 3 points by ARod1993 (2420) 2 years ago

I don't believe that the government should be able to preemptively decide that a given business or class of businesses is "bad" and then punish it and its employees without giving them their day in court first. That said, there is a strong distinction between ethical and unethical business practices, and the American people have the right to codify unethical business practices (and define appropriate sanctions for engaging in such practices) in our legal code and then expect the government to enforce the laws in question. That's not about "empowering the evil big government" so much as it is about ensuring that we don't throw ourselves on the mercy of private tyrants in the attempt to avoid a (largely nonexistent) public one.

Most of the corporations he listed in the second case are most likely guilty of business practices ranging from simply unethical to outright dangerous to the continued health and economic safety of the American people, and it's perfectly acceptable for him to complain about that. If you don't want people to pass judgement on them, then bring them before a truly independent commission and put their books in the limelight. Find a judge and a DA or AG, impanel a jury, and let's have it out. If there truly was no wrongdoing by the corporations in question, then they might as well clear their names now. If there was wrongdoing, we the people deserve to know about it and have the right to restitution. If there was wrongdoing condoned via loopholes, then close the damn loopholes. Either way, the line between mutterings and slander can only be crossed when the "victim" isn't deliberately muddying the waters so that nobody can quite see what's happening.

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

Do you agree with the premise above that the Gov must bring "corporations down to controllable size"?

Also, I find little evidence that the US Gov is evil, they are just inept.

[-] 2 points by ARod1993 (2420) 2 years ago

It all depends on how you define controllable size. I don't want corporations reduced to puppets of the government any more than I want to reduce the government to a corporate puppet. What I do want, however, is for firms to be prevented from reaching the size where they are immune to market forces (monopoly, oligopoly, etc).

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

In the limit, if markets are free, no company is immune to market forces. The history of the free market system is replete with instances where Gov meddling artificially helps some companies and hurts others. The Gov may have good intentions when they do meddle but they almost always fail and the reason that they fail is pretty simple.

The battle is one sided. On one side is a small group of maybe pretty smart people (like the Politburo) that get together and try to manage markets, on the other side are millions of individuals and groups that operate businesses and their personal finances. Who do you think is going to prevail, in almost every case?

[-] 2 points by freehorseman (267) from Miles City, Mt 2 years ago

Do not let either Goverment or Corporations steal our Liberty.(G M)

[-] 2 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

At least when a Corp executive steals there is a chance they can be put in jail. When the Gov executive steals they get the Kennedy Medal.

http://www.cdtoa.org/news/executive-director/987-june-2010/1163-the-courage-to-tax-us-more-how-absurd

[-] 1 points by freehorseman (267) from Miles City, Mt 2 years ago

Twenty five billon no jail time.If you steal you should go to jail.Your goverment sucks because it is owned by corporate america.Goverment is not the problem, Corrupt goverment is the problem.We have corrupt corporate goverment.Stop making excuses for both of them and start holding both accountable.

[-] 0 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

I like corporations because if they do a lousy job competitors eat their lunch and they go out of business. They are controlled by free market forces. Government, on the other hand, can go on day after day producing the same crappy product, charge outrageous prices, deliver poor service, and continue in business forever. Or what seems like forever. The problem is that unlike corporations there are no controls on Gov and it has no pressure to pursue excellence.

Corporations give money to politicians so that they can get the Gov to give them an advantage in the marketplace. We should not permit our Gov to pick and choose winners and losers in the free market. They have shown little aptitude for this ability and an amazing affinity for corruption.

[-] 1 points by freehorseman (267) from Miles City, Mt 2 years ago

Not true they can do a lousy job and survive for ever.Look at the banking ind.energy etc. Only survive due to ownership of US Govt.

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

The lousy corp will only survive forever if you let the Gov interfere and try to pick winners and losers. Don't give up your freedom .

[-] 0 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

Do you not even see the ignorance of your statement? You like the organizations that corrupt our political process and your remedy to our problem is to do away with the Gov't. That would be like getting rid of the whole police force because a few bad cops are on the take. If corporations are corrupting our body politic, we should be thinking about doing away with the corrupters, not the referee. I can only say 'wow' to your analytical skills.

[-] 2 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

Can we live without the insults?

The problem is that unlike corporations there are no controls on Gov and it has no pressure to pursue excellence. The best way to reduce the impact of Gov on our lives is to limit its power as been the practice for many years in the US. That is why the US has been so successful and is the largest economy in the world with the most prolific innovation.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

sorry, i'll try to drop the insults. I believe the corporations are doing so well, not because they provide the best services but because they decimate all other competition because they own the political process. Take the death of the electric car and GE's welfare check it got last year.

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (21378) 2 years ago

No, Jesse, remember you're a rude liberal. LOL!

[-] 1 points by freehorseman (267) from Miles City, Mt 2 years ago

I am not a liberal just a person who see things as they are. Some of what I belive would fall into what is known as conservative thinking.Just not the modern Dogma that is being preached the Scabs on this site.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

Yes, to those who come here and mouth off silly talking points, I'm happy to be rude, but some people are here to debate and rudeness just is not needed, and I need to refrain. I guess it has a lot to do with my up bringing. Rudeness is a strong quality in the ghetto and with the young, but it is not always the best approach.

[-] 0 points by beautifulworld (21378) 2 years ago

I was just kidding! I agree. I try to discuss politely with people who are sticking to the issues.

[Deleted]

[-] 0 points by beautifulworld (21378) 2 years ago

Okay. That's cool.

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

I agree with you that if allowed corps will try to influence Gov at the expense of their competitors. I just don't have much faith that the Gov can resist the money and power that corps offer in exchange for favorable treatment.

I am optimistic about innovation. It takes incredible force to quash great ideas. The electric car may be one such great innovation. I don't worry too much about technological advancement, it is still expanding rapidly in the US. There were 90,000 patent applications in 1990, 250,000 in 2010.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

I guess I just believe if one of them have to go, It should be the faction, corporations, not the referee, Gov't. I don't think much people would be happy if we starved the beast, Gov't. But I can still sleep at night knowing that corporations no longer exist. And I believe the Founders would have my back on this argument. Do we lock up the drug dealer of the junkie?

[-] 2 points by GildasSapiens (266) 2 years ago

I don't trust Govt. to choose winners & losers. But I do expect Govt. to protect the people from anti-social behaviour by corporations, & I expect Govt. to protect DEMOcracy ruthlessly, by slapping down any corporation (or, indeed, lobby group, clique or individual) that tries to exert its power to the detriment of the ordinary working people.

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

Do you want the Gov to make lobby groups illegal?

[-] 1 points by GildasSapiens (266) 2 years ago

No, as I wrote in my previous comment: "I expect Govt. to protect DEMOcracy ruthlessly, by slapping down any ... lobby group ... that tries to exert its power to the detriment of the ordinary working people."

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

What exactly does the lobby group have to do to incur the ruthless Gov slap?

Suppose a lobby group exerts its influence with the Gov to enact a law that makes it legal to discriminate based on a person's race. Should they get a slap?

[-] 1 points by GildasSapiens (266) 2 years ago

It should get a slap for even suggesting such a thing - long before it achieves it.

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

So the Gov should slap the NAACP for lobbying in support of this practice:

http://www.acri.org/blog/2011/06/22/court-wont-rehear-race-based-admissions-case/

[-] 1 points by GildasSapiens (266) 2 years ago

It's a sad indictment of the USA that Americans are still so obsessed with race, tribe, etc. That's a major blot on your democracy (one of many).

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

It is easy to claim great racial tolerance in a country like, say, Japan. There is no one there but Japanese! (98.5% Japanese and 1.5% other).

The great thing about the US is that we live in a hugely diverse country and we generally get along with each other pretty well. Don't be so hard on your country (or let the NYT tell you how bad it is). It is still a pretty great place and getting better by the minute.

One day you will look back and think that the only better time than right now to be alive in American is in the future.

I would love to see a little more optimism in this forum.

[-] 1 points by 1sealyon (434) 2 years ago

I have traveled a bit and find that the US is one of the most racially tolerant countries in the world. We live the e pluribus unum. Other countries say the words but don't have the diverse population to prove it. Pick a place, Germany, France, Japan, Brazil, China, they don't have nearly the mix of race, creed, immigrant, native, and political bent. Over-all we do pretty well getting along relative to other locales like, say, the Middle East, Northern Ireland, and Somalia.

[-] 0 points by Mooks (1985) 2 years ago

What is wrong with Halliburton?

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

Placing a cap on profits will weaken corporations.

[-] -3 points by tomahawk99 (-26) 2 years ago

Corporations add value and employ people, you sound like a complete big government liberal. How do you propose to downsize corporations? Do you even know what a corporation does? If you hate corporations , do you hate Unions?

[-] 3 points by Progression (143) 2 years ago

What about corporations that accept bailouts? Or maybe even ones that accept bailouts and give them out as bonuses afterwards? What about the ones involved in securities fraud or mortgage fraud? Many of the financial corporations are running a sketchy business that impacts the economy in a significant manner so it shouldn't be a surprise when opposition begin to grow against them. Corporations may add value to themselves but they do not have an obligation to the people, just their shareholders. Divergent interests in my opinion.

[-] 0 points by tomahawk99 (-26) 2 years ago

Any corporation, union, or person can't break the law. But to say corporations as all being bad is ridiculous and shows a lack of understanding. I work for a corporation and believe me, we have a lot of restrictions and controls via audits and laws. Also to exclude Unions from your list is naive, Unions got bailouts as well. Unions also get taxpayers money (public sector Unions).

[-] 2 points by Progression (143) 2 years ago

Any corporation, union, or person can't break the law. But to say corporations as all being bad is ridiculous and shows a lack of understanding. I work for a corporation and believe me, we have a lot of restrictions and controls via audits and laws. Also to exclude Unions from your list is naive, Unions got bailouts as well. Unions also get taxpayers money (public sector Unions).

Where did I say all corporations are bad? Where did I even mention Unions or a list at all? I'd also like to see a link to your source that "Unions get bailouts" so I can compare between the hundreds of billions spent in bailouts for financial giants. If you are telling the truth in the first place and not reaching for straws that is.

[-] 1 points by GildasSapiens (266) 2 years ago

Try reading the article before you rush to criticize.