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Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 10:49:38 MST Print View

So this guy in California gets a ticket, and hefty fine, for driving alone in the carpool lane recently. But, he argues, he most certainly was NOT alone, he had his incorporation papers with him, and the courts have ruled that a corporation is a person, so, he argues, there were 2 people in the car, satisfying the law!

Turns out the guy's an activist who wants to challenge the idea of corporate personhood in the courts. I hope he wins. I do enjoy creative ways to challenge silly laws. He's already lost at the local superior court level, but vows to appeal.

http://www.marinij.com/novato/ci_22328805/san-rafael-activists-corporation-was-his-carpool-buddy

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 11:31:36 MST Print View

I'll believe corporations are people when Texas executes one.

Diplomatic Mike
(MikefaeDundee)

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Greed on 02/02/2013 11:38:06 MST Print View

Has a corporation ever been killed in Afgahnistan? Or is that the fate of their employees?
I see the 'WEST' is now getting involved in Africa. Is there any oil in Algeria or Mali?

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 15:18:42 MST Print View

Okay, I am confused. I thought a corporation was a voluntary association; a cooperative endeavor. This means we have the freedom to associate with whomever we choose for a common goal; and as such a corporation does not have the right to restrict the rights of any other group or individual; or to initiate force against anyone. Now there are bad corporations, and our legal system should deal with the bad apples. Not all corporations are bad; not all are good.

So if corporations are bad by definition (Soylent Green), then it logically follows that good people would not do business with any corporation. So if we define corporations as evil, we would be evil to purchase goods and services from all corporations. Some corporations that come to my mind are:

American Recreation Products, Inc. (Kelty, Sierra Designs)
Aqamira Technologies, Inc.
Backcountry.com, Inc.
Beartooth Media Group, Inc.
Brooks Sports, Inc.
Brunton, Inc.
Cabot Hoisery Mills, Inc. (Darn Tough Vermont)
Campmor, Inc.
Cascade Designs, Inc.
Kahtoola, Inc.
Mountain Hardwear, Inc.
Mountain Safety Research, Inc.
New Balance Athletic Shoes, Inc.
Patagonia, Inc.
Recreational Equipment, Inc
Tarptents, Inc.
VF Corporation (Smartwool, Jansport, Timberland, The North Face, Vans, Eagle Creek, Lee, Wrangler)
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Wolverine Worldwide, Inc. (Merrell, Saucony, Chaco, Patagonia Footear-licensed brand)

Taking it further, LLCs (Limited Liabilty Company) have similar protections under the law as corporations. Some that come to mind are:

Alpacka Raft, LLC
Andrew Skukra Adventures, LLC
antigravitygear, LLC
GoLite, LLC
Jacks 'R' Better, LLC
Mountainfitter, LLC
Trail Deigns, LLC
zPacks, LLC


Now I am not saying any of the above are bad, in fact, I have and will continue to do business with most of them.

Another thing, if one thinks corporations are bad, you better go check the contents of your retirement holdings (if you have one).

If I have incorrectly identified any corporation or LLC, it was not intentional.

Last note: just my contrarian nature. Plus, the ball and chain made me stay at home this weekend to do "to dos." But alas, she hasn't learned that I cannot be trusted alone without direct supervision :)

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Corporations are Soylent Green on 02/02/2013 16:03:22 MST Print View

An impressive number of words to post without addressing the personhood issue.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Corporations are Soylent Green on 02/02/2013 16:10:44 MST Print View

What is the personhood issue?

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 16:15:29 MST Print View

Ah, Nick, you misunderstood my subject line (perhaps you've never seen the movie). Spoiler Alert!: Soylent Green is something people eat, it's not the corporation (it is the Soylent Corporation). At the end of the movie, Charlton Heston yells: You can have my Soylent Green when you pry it ......... oops, wrong video. Heston shouts: Soylent Green, it's people!

So I was simply, in my subject line, cheekily saying that corporations are people. It had nothing to do with good/evil (though I do disagree with the legal concept of corporate personhood, but that's a different matter, and also not a matter of good/evil).

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 16:24:10 MST Print View

"So I was simply, in my subject line, cheekily saying that corporations are people."

And I listed a lot of corporations with really nice people too :)

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Greed on 02/02/2013 17:30:07 MST Print View

"I see the 'WEST' is now getting involved in Africa. Is there any oil in Algeria or Mali?"

Perhaps re-involved would be a better way to put it. There was that quaint little idea of the White Man's burden going around in the last half of the 19th and first half of the 20th centuries, which was reluctantly assumed by the Brits, French, Portuguese, et al. Nothing to do with resources, of course.

Oil and gas in Algeria? A bit, I'd say. The recent hostage taking in Algeria took place at In Aminaas, a huge natural gas producing facility. Algeria is also a major oil producer.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Greed on 02/02/2013 20:26:53 MST Print View

BTW, regarding my first post...

I was just getting ahead of the curve - before my friend Jerry posted ;)

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 20:33:19 MST Print View

Another thing...

Car pool lanes are stupid. We would reduce congestion in the remaining lanes and reduce fuel consumption & emissions during rush hourd by eliminating them. If people want to car pool great. But let individuals decide for themselves.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 21:03:48 MST Print View

What? I haven't posted anything???

Okay, if I'm going to be blamed for posting

Corporations are neither good nor bad

It's just a way some people can invest and limit the liability to their personal assets if the corporation goes bad

They are created with a government charter, so it's fair the government regulate them

To start, they shouldn't be allowed to bribe politicians so they make favorable laws:

corpeff

And the corporation should treat all shareholders the same, not pass inside information to some investors, break laws, etc.

A corporation is not a person entitled to constitutional rights, although it's complicated because a government person should be required to get a court order before a search which is a constitutional right

Corporations should be subject to death penalty - if they behave too badly they should be disolved

And that 20 ounce soft drink law is a great idea. Makes no sense at face value, because someone could order two drinks, buy given human psychology, it's possible that soft drink consumption will go down. Making the law and us talking about it may result in reduced soft drink consumption. Obesity is an epedemic One of the causes of our out of control medical expenses We need to try different things. Drop those that don't work and try others...

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 21:07:43 MST Print View

"Obesity is an epedemic One of the causes of our out of control medical expenses We need to try different things. Drop those that don't work and try others..."

I know it's not very fashionable these days, but how about trying restraint and personal responsibility? Just a thought.....

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 22:02:56 MST Print View

"I know it's not very fashionable these days, but how about trying restraint and personal responsibility? Just a thought....."

That works for individuals

But what do we do as a country, just say it's up to individuals and leave it at that? Let the epedemic worsen until the country is bankrupted?

I think each of us can do things, and there's a role for the government

Which includes squashing those Soylent Green Corporations if they're the cause, to take it back to the original post

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 22:13:57 MST Print View

"That works for individuals ... But what do we do as a country, just say it's up to individuals and leave it at that? Let the epedemic worsen until the country is bankrupted?"

I thought we were talking about obesity. If so, then yes, we leave it up to individuals, since they're the ones getting fat. You simply can't legislate gluttony away.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/02/2013 23:05:06 MST Print View

First thing tomorrow morning I am driving down to Starbucks and buying a Venti Caramel Frappacinio with whipped cream. Maybe I'll get a cream cheese pastery too.

I think I can make rational decisions regarding my personal health.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Corporations are Soylent Green! on 02/03/2013 07:43:59 MST Print View

"I thought we were talking about obesity. If so, then yes, we leave it up to individuals, since they're the ones getting fat. You simply can't legislate gluttony away.

I think I can make rational decisions regarding my personal health."

The cost of medical care is a crisis worse than just about any problem we've faced. It keeps taking a bigger share of the economy. Medicare/Medicaid, government pensions, private companies, and individuals are all being squeezed.

The constitution says that the government is supposed to promote the general welfare, so it should play a role in solving this.

We need more imaginative solutions, like going after the obesity epidemic. The 20 ounce soft drink ban is not much of a solution, but at least it's got us talking about it, yes?

Increasing taxes for Medicare/Medicaid or fixing the amount paid by the government leaving the individual to make up the ever increasing difference is not a solution.

Continuing on like we've been going is crazy - "Look mom! Taylor Swift says we should get some more Pepsi!"

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
@ Jerry on 02/03/2013 13:23:11 MST Print View

The Constitution is about the limitation of government, not the conduct of individuals. It is not a charter of the Government's power; but about protecting individuals from government. In regards to the conduct of individuals, see the Declaration of Independence and The Bill of Rights.

One reason the Constitution replaced the Articles of Confederation was the inability to raise the money to pay debts incurred to finance the Revolutionary War. The new government could not succeed if it could not pay its debts; thus putting the General Welfare of the country, as a whole, at risk.

So on to the Constitution, as a document to lay out the powers (limitation thereof). Now go read Article I, Section 8. It starts with this introductory paragraph:

"The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;"

Below this introduction, are several sentences each beginning with, "To..."

Each sentence enumerates what is meant by the introductionary paragraph. The General Welfare means the welfare of the Country as a whole -- nothing about the welfare of individuals -- that is outlined in the DOI and BORs.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: @ Jerry on 02/03/2013 13:50:11 MST Print View

"The General Welfare means the welfare of the Country as a whole -- nothing about the welfare of individuals"

Look at wikipedia general welfare

There has always been an argument about whether to interpret narrowly, like you are, or broadly, that says the government can tax and spend it on welfare of individuals.

During Washington and Adams administrations, it was interpreted broadly.

Then, until 1936, it was interpreted narrowly

Since 1936, it's been interpreted broadly

Hopefully, we won't go back to "the bad old days" that you're advocating

Hopefully, we won't go back to slavery and not allowing women to vote

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: @ Jerry on 02/03/2013 14:18:33 MST Print View

"Look at wikipedia general welfare"

Now that is a good source.

How about reading the Federalist (papers) and other writings of the time. Of course there was not a consensus. Jefferson/Madison vs Hamilton. Very important to read John Locke, as he influenced our founding fathers -- some of his writings were copied almost verbatim into the Declaration of Independence. And since Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence, ready everything he wrote.

How about the early dictionary by Noah Webster? That would give us an indication of the meaning in that time in history, wouldn't it? 1828 Noah Webster Dictionary:

WEL’FARE, noun [well and fare, a good going; German wohlfahrt; Dutch welvaart; Swedish valfart; Danish velfoerd.]

1. Exemption from misfortune, sickness, calamity or evil; the enjoyment of health and the common blessings of life; prosperity; happiness; applied to persons.

2. Exemption from any unusual evil or calamity; the enjoyment of peace and prosperity, or the ordinary blessings of society and civil government; applied to states.

200 years ago welfare for individuals meant good fortune. Exact opposite of today, where welfare means government support.

#2 would support the general welfare clause, as stated in the Constitution.

And lets do go back to the good old days when Individual Rights triumphed. Sure there were problems, you couldn't undo centuries of problems overnight. If we take your definition of General Welfare, it means everyone; and you cannot include EVERYONE in any government program, programs always exclude someone. If one person is excluded, then there is no common good; programs for the common good, or your definition of general welfare, are exclusionary and discriminate by nature. The true common good is to let each person decide for themselves -- then no one is excluded.