I say no! Words games can manipulate peoples minds. The Citizens United Decision by the Supreme Court gave Corporations the Rights of people. Corporations are actually straw men - pieces of paper. They can be bought and sold. If you sue a corporation the "people" may run for the hills and you end up suing a worthless piece of paper. People are made of flesh and blood and bones. They live and breath, and die.
"During a campaign stop at the Iowa State Fair yesterday, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) vociferously defended tax breaks for corporations by declaring that “corporations are people.” Though Romney’s assertion was widely mocked –corporations cannot vote, cannot be sent to prison, and clearly lack all human anatomy –the former Massachusetts governor has not backed down in the face of withering criticism.
Now, another GOPer says Romney was actually spot on: Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY).
ThinkProgress asked Paul about Romney’s comments prior to the Republican presidential debate in Ames. Paul rushed to the forme governor’s defense, arguing that Romney was correct in his equivalency between man and mega-company.
“I think we’re all corporations,” Paul said. “All of us are corporations.” The Tea Party senator later went on to blur the lines further between corporations and people by declaring,
“They’re us. They’re the middle class. "
I think they should consider drug-testing some of these candidates....
The question is somewhat confusing...Or indeed confusing I might say.. Laws have provided corporations the rights the same as the rights of the real person. That, it can borrow money, sue or be sued, sell possessions or stocks,and transact business just like the ordinary people. But the difference is corporations are represented by group of people or a person through some legal agreements with the state using a "piece of paper".
There is a vested interest by individuals of means to define corporations as people. Common sense tells us that people are separate biological creatures of the specie Homo Sapiens. Corporations are legal entities certified through states, or countries which define the relationship between individuals in the marketplace. The Supreme Court has decided that money =speech and Corporations = Human beings. True speech and true humanity has been taken out of the equation. It's a Bold New World.
The ultimate measure of the "corporation is a person" discussion is voting rights...
While corporations and individuals can donate politically, Walmart cannot place its mark in the ballot box...
A person does not stand for simply a human being. A person is an entity.
Corporations pay taxes for the most part and should have a say in politics.
A corporation is a "person" for purposes of the constitutional guarantees of equal protection of laws and Due Process of Law.
Foreign governments otherwise eligible to sue in United States courts are "persons" entitled to institute a suit for treble damages for alleged antitrust violations under the Clayton Act (15 U.S.C.A. § 12 et seq.).
Illegitimate children are "persons" within the meaning of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
The phrase interested person refers to heirs, devisees, children, spouses, creditors, beneficiaries, and any others having a property right in, or a claim against, a trust estate or the estate of a decedent, ward, or protected person. It also refers to personal representatives and to fiduciaries
And thus it has become resulting from the Byzantine convolutions of the monied class and the lawyers. I doubt very much that corporations were what Thomas Jefferson was referring to when he wrote "People were endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights"
The people and a "person" are two different entities.
Mittens the Mutt said corporations are people.
They are not. Except to a wingnut who also worships them as gods.
People is the plural of person. At least that's what I learned in second grade. Maybe everything has changed since then.
Words don't really have set meanings I think. It's all about how you use your words to manipulate other bipedal carbon life forms. I would say manipulate people, but I guess "People" has such an unclear definition any more that I have to come up with a new term to mean those living creatures of which I share the specie determination. The reason that the word people has been hijacked by the wealthiest among us is that the law of the land ie the Constitution of the United States gives so many rights to "The People" It can not be possible that such glorious rights can only be meant for any pathetic bipedal carbon based creature...no what really must have been meant here was that the rights were actually meant for the Trusts and the Large financial institutions...Those have become the people according to the monied class and their toadies in the Supreme Court.
Of course corporations are people! How couldn't they?
They are privately owned by thousands of people, who each vote for X, Y, and Z.
Thousands of people acting independently are still people.
Evan, you are exactly right! It never ceases to amaze me that some people think they are just entities that are on their own. Corporations are employers, they donate to charity, they support local communities with wages and taxes they pay and most contribute to the communities they are a part of. Just one example is Whirlpool Corporation. They donate a range and refrigerator to every Habitat for Humanity home built in North America. Many other corporations donate for community projects.
The same people that don't understand this, also do not understand that the government does not generate money on it's own. It does not have any money except for what it takes from us. When it is scammed and cheated, it comes out of the pocket of the taxpayer, not some faceless government agency.
Corporations are made of people (and their money). But in spite of the disastrous Citizens United decision, a corporation is not a person. It's a group of people, and they're acting collectively, not independently.
My minivan, for example, was made by the Chrysler Corporation; a group of people acting collectively to produce my minivan (among many other things). An accountant who works for the Chrysler Corporation, and the various shareholders in Chrysler did not put my van together; the workers on the assembly line did that. But without the accountant, the shareholders and the line workers, I wouldn't have been able to buy that van.
Should Chrysler be able to spend its money to buy political advertising?
The simplest, easiest to implement answer is no. Chrysler is not a person; it's a collective of people, all of whom have the right to spend their money on political advertising if they choose to. Nobody's rights have been taken away if Chrysler is forbidden to buy political advertising or make political contributions.
The harder-to-implement but righter answer to the "Should a corporation get to spend its money on political ads" question is this:
Yes, it should, but only after a vote taken of /all/ members of the Chrysler Corporation in which a 90% majority agrees on how much money to spend and on what the money should be spent.
And that's for every contribution, every time. No assigning of proxy to the BoD into perpetuity. Every question of political expenditure must be decided by a vote of the members, every time.
Corporations are individuals acting. Thus, a corporation doesn't even really exist.
If you think it's not OK for a corporation to give money to a politician, then why do you think it's OK for a government to give money to a foreign government?
The principle is 1,000,000% the same, but liberals are blinded by their anti-corporation, pro-government mentality to not see this.
"If you think it's not OK for a corporation to give money to a politician, then why do you think it's OK for a government to give money to a foreign government?"
Do I? Where did you get that idea?
"Should Chrysler be able to spend its money to buy political advertising? The simplest, easiest to implement answer is no."
And then argued that it's because the company is not a person.
Neither is Government, but it does it every day, and you support this.
It's a hypocritical argument.
Oh, I see where you're coming from.
I follow your argument, but I disagree with your conclusion, and one of your premises. Sadly, I haven't the time to present my argument well at the moment, so I'll have to yield until I do.
Does government pay for political advertising? I would argue that, to offset corporate donations or to eliminate them altogether, instead of corporations donating to a specific party, candidate, or cause, that local, state, and federal election campaign accounts are created that can then be donated into by corporations...whether non-profit or for-profit..
Causes and candidates, upon their successful application for entering a political contest, then share these funds... Let the most creative/pursuasive side win....
thank you for that comment. I could not believe Romney saying that, but just like the other candidates, eventually they will reveal their true colors.
So since people own corporations, corporations are people. So by this logic anything that people own is actually an extension of themselves therefore people. If my brother and I own a boat together, then the boat is a person. I get it.
This is an effort to take away the rights of people. People meaning living breathing individual creatures who are called Homo Sapiens. I know that certain bipedal carbon based creatures are enamored with the concept of allowing corporations free reign according Adam Smith's idea of free enterprise even to the point where they are willing to give up their humanity, but this is not a logical argument. You are losing the forest through the trees. Your perspective is skewed.
The only organization that can take away rights is the government.
For all other organizations, you willingly give up certain rights to acquire something that you value more.
For example: when you go to a movie theater, you voluntarily give up your right to yell as loud as you want to, but in exchange you get to see a movie.
With government, you don't voluntarily do anything, but the government comes to your house and steals your money.
No, the argument isn't that "corporations are owned by people, thus they are people" -- that would be stupid.
The argument is that "a corporation is nothing but thousands of individuals acting, thus any action of a corporation is an act of some individual".
"Nazis" didn't kill the Jews, each individual who pulled their trigger, released the gas, or flipped the switch killed the Jews.
"Al Qaeda" didn't fly planes into the twin towers, 19 individuals acting of their own accord boarded planes and flew into the towers.
The problem here is that the Supreme Court is giving Corporations the status of "people". The NAZIS were a political party. It should not be thought that the word NAZI is synonymous with people, or that Political Party is synonymous with people. Certainly it is a group of like minded people with a common goal, and that is how it should be defined in my opinion, but the word person or "people" has to be differentiated from a group of people with a common goal. This may seem like a fine distinction, but I think it is important. Corporations are even farther removed from being "people" than a political party because a person can sever all association with a corporation and there is no emotional, or philosophical remnant of the corporation that remains with the person.
If you dislike the way a government spends money, then you can *try* to vote the politicians out.
If you dislike the way a company spends money, then you can refuse to use their services or buy their stocks/bonds.
The principle is 1,000,000,000% the same, except you have MORE POWER as a consumer than you do as a vote.
YOUR NAME in capital letters represents a corporation. Your SS# is your taxpayer ID which the masses have accepted, simply by hoping.....they get future benefits in return.
Silence = consent.
Proper nouns representing a human being only has the first letter capitalized John Smith.
Human beings operate commercially using this corporate strawman. Try to get your DMV or your bank to properly spell Your Name.
JOHN SMITH is the same as IBM, XEROX.
All of which are persons!
Words have different meanings under Admiralty Jurisdiction.
I"m really struggling to figure out your mentality.
Are you saying that if I spell my name "EVAN G ROGERS" then I can act like a corporation?
I am saying that when YOUR NAME is spelled in capital letters, it is a corporate entity.
Why would a human being trade his/her time, sweat, and labor for air (Federal Reserve Notes).
A corporation will accept air as currency through purchase orders or fiat currency.
I do have some hubs explaining my mentality.
Research it Evan, Why does everything having to do with the government or commercial entities spell your name in caps?
"The argument is that "a corporation is nothing but thousands of individuals acting, thus any action of a corporation is an act of some individual"."
That's a flawed argument, too. The acts of a corporation are acts of many individuals acting collectively.
To say the 9/11 attacks are merely the act of the 19 hijackers ignores the entire network of other individuals that helped the 19 hijackers get the skills to fly those planes, plan the hijacking, get into position at the appointed time and place, etc etc etc.
Corporations don't exist. Neither does government. Each entity is simply millions of people acting in a way that they think is best for themselves.
Thus each act by any government is done with the willingness and understanding of AN individual.
"The US" didn't defeat "The NAZIs", the individuals of one group stopped attacking the others because they felt, individually, that their life would be better off if they did not continue to attack.
No entity greater than an individual can act. It's impossible.
The problem with this argument is if that is true then the number of interested parties would equal the number of employees of the company, but it doesn't. The new law makes the corporation one more additional element of its own, and that element has unlimited ability to influence elections to the limit of its resources. That one element can easily outweigh the influence of all the employees combined if its resources are substantial enough and its officers inclined, essentially negating the desires of the employees themselves, potentially.
There's no problem whatsoever with a company giving money to a candidate. Anyone can easily stop giving that company money if they disagree.
The real problem is that those candidates that receive money from the companies disregard the 10th Amendment and dish out money to the companies that support them.
The problem is the fact that the people who are elected don't bother to take their oath of office seriously.
I agree with Editor and Chief.
Corporations has always carried a lot of decision making weight when it comes people's lives. America use to thrive with companies and Mom & Pop stores working together in harmony until Corporations decided live for everyone else and big profits for us would be better if we bought out and pressured out these Mom & Pop stores so they lower prices to the point Mom & Pop can't compete and bye, bye Mom & Pop. Now whenever Corporations decide to raise price-(I rarely see prices lowered for any length of time) then we all have to paid that price because there's no Mom & Pop stores to compete with these giants.
So true. Corporations only care about their bottom line and profit margins. They'll ship out jobs, transfer location and stifle local competition or growth of local industries that could potentially compete with them. They have no roots to the community and they won't care so long as they maintain their dominance of the market.
Question... If Corporations are people, can I be arrested for murder if I cause one to go bankrupt? I've been staying up nights worrying about it.
Nope. If that were the case, Delphi Automotive would have ceased to exist some time around 2001 or so.
If corporations are people, they're the only people who can come back from the dead.
Another question... If I give birth to 100 corporations, can I vote 101 times on the next election, 100 for my corporations and one vote for me?
This is REALLY twisting the argument.
If one person creates a million new corporations, it doesn't mean that there are 1,000,001 people. It means that ONE person did something.
A corporation isn't a person, but the actions of that corporation are the actions of individual humans.
People try to be right so much that they miss the whole point but corporations make jobs for people and people work for corporations so why not give a break to companies or corporations that due so. Everyone is so aligned with a party that it divides america and nothing will ever get fixed, or maybe everyone is so open minde that they due not see whats before them!
The law makes all corporations equal. Both your corporate strawman as well as business' have the same rights.
Government gives money to foreign governments so that they can establish a stable and secure environment for corporations to come in and invest there and set up shop because it will be cheaper to operate there and increase their profits.
Seriously, governments give money to foreign governments in pursuit of national security and economic interests. Though you could argue that those national interests could also be in the interest (if not for) of those corporations who give the politicians money to get re-elected and advance their agenda or plans for global expansion.
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