Friday, January 22, 2010

Are Corporations People?

What are corporations? That's a serious question. Corporations are state constructed tyrannies. The internal management of corporations is simply a tyrannical system, orders come from the top down, you transfer them below you and so on. About a century ago the courts gave corporations the rights of persons, which was a tremendous blow against classical liberalism. Classical liberalism maintains that rights inhere in people, like you and me, not in abstract tyrannies. But corporations were given the rights of persons, such as freedom of speech, freedom from search, so they’re unaccountable. And of course they’re immortal persons of enormous power. In fact the recent trade agreements give them rights way beyond persons. General Motors can go to Mexico and demand to be treated like a Mexican company, it’s one of the ways the Mexican economic system has been taken over by foreigners. Can a Mexican company come to New York and demand it get national treatment? Its inconceivable.

-Noam Chomsky, from an article on zmag.org, May, 2000