The New Mutants
Corporate Man - Amygdelinquents
"They have neither soul to save, nor heart to feel, nor body to kick."
Thus spake Samuel Adams (1722 – 1803) of the then newly emerging corporations. Adams was an American politician and philosopher who, as a founding father of the United States, was one of the key contributors to the principles of the virgin American republic.
He is generally credited with the above statement in relation to these newly emerging legal entities because he, among others, could see that they provided the perfect vehicle for amoral commercial activity.
Corporations may have existed since Babylonian times, but the modern version began life as a vehicle for the exploitation of "colonies" (what a cheek to think that any human has the right to "colonise" any other human) through shared investment in overseas trading activity. They were devised not only to spread the risk and share the profit, but also to distance investors from concerns about morality. As a colonising instrument, corporations were perfect. Entire civilisations of non-European peoples could be subjected to whatever it took to bring home the goods and turn an investor's speculation into profit.
The distancing of investors from the more extreme elements of this exploitation - massacres, enslavements, hunger, disease - proved particularly useful for god fearing Victorian gentlemen. The introduction of "limited liability" laws in the mid 19th century further enhanced and refined this distancing such that they had even less heart to feel or body to kick..
Evolving mutants among us...
We humans have long held that we are the dominant and therefore most successful species on the planet, but, since the mid 19th century, there has been an evolving mutant among us.
This mutant has distanced himself from the constraints and anxieties of conscience by absolving himself of liability or responsibility for anything but a duty to his host organism - the corporation.
This mutant is "Corporate Man", or, as we in the trade like to refer to them, "amygdefficients" or, more commonly, "amygdelinquents". "Amygdefs" or "amygdels" for short. Amygdels can of course be readily identified by their employment. Do they work at a high level for or have substantial interests in a multi-national corporation? They can also be identified by their slavish adherence to "the bottom line" (see Bottom Liners) - the line in their corporation's accounts which shows "profit before taxes". (Amygdels know profit after taxes is meaningless because they and their mutant colleagues will have in place tax evasion schemes too numerous and complex to explain here.)
Amygdels inhabit a "real world" where it is perfectly self-evident that only human endeavour which generates significant pre-tax profit can be considered worthwhile. All else is meaningless, futile, and effeminate.
As touched upon above, amygdels' liabilities are "limited". This means that their corporations can engage in any activity its senior amygdels see fit (such as buying up third world dictators and using them to suppress their impoverished non-amygdels) without being exposed to any personal danger - either physical or economic. If the absolute worst happens, the "corporation" takes the blame and disappears from its place in theoretical financial/legal space.
"Conscience" is present in humans for an evolutionary reason. It is part of what allows us to congregate and co-operate in such large numbers. The source of our conscience and our ability to empathise with others is a part of the brain known as the amygdala. A dysfunctional amygdala is what characterises a psychopath.
It is important to note that there is no cure for psychopathy (or it's cousin sociopathy). It is a physical condition arising out of the physical dysfunction of the amygdala. In the human population it is assumed that this may amount to less than 1% of the population. Interestingly, this estimate rises to over 6% in the upper echelons of corporate structure. As the current dominant socio-economic construct, the corporation provides an hospitable environment for amygdels not only to flourish, but also to evolve even more dysfunctional amydalii.
It would appear that more and more of the levers of global power are and will be ending up in the hands of more and more psychopaths.
© 2012 Deacon Martin