Friday, January 22, 2010

We the Corporations

We the Corporations of (but not necessarily wholly contained within or most concerned with what's best for) the United States, in Order to form a more malleable Union, prejudice Justice, insure domestic Profitability, co-opt the common defense, promote our general Goods and Wares, and secure the Prospects of Dividends for ourselves but in particular our top shareholder's Posterity, do disdain even as we appropriate this Constitution for the United States of America.

SCOTUS sold us out:
The Supreme Court has handed a new weapon to lobbyists. If you vote wrong, a lobbyist can now tell any elected official that my company, labor union or interest group will spend unlimited sums explicitly advertising against your re-election.

“We have got a million we can spend advertising for you or against you — whichever one you want,’ ” a lobbyist can tell lawmakers, said Lawrence M. Noble, a lawyer at Skadden Arps in Washington and former general counsel of the Federal Election Commission.

The decision seeks to let voters choose for themselves among a multitude of voices and ideas when they go to the polls, but it will also increase the power of organized interest groups at the expense of candidates and political parties.
Utterly repulsive.

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15 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The selective corporate personhood this nation embraces is about the worst of the worst. While a significant minority of REAL individuals still fight for the equal rights such as marriage, machinations of streamlined greed are afforded all the civic benefits of personhood with NONE of the civic responsibilities.

If we could legally throw corporations in jail--including their governing board and executive staff, cutting them off from any legal operations and letting them rot for say six life sentences should they commit egregious wrongs, I MIGHT be more okay about this decision. But as it is, extremely greedy and corrupt individuals use the current structure to shield their malfeasance with full knowledge that a corporation cannot be tried (beyond expensive lengthy and limited class action suits) and individuals can always defer direct responsibility to the larger collective.

In fact, the only reason modern corporations exist is to protect their members in terms of criminal, regulatory and tax law. If you've ever had council on incorporating (INC, LLC, Kcorp, even 401c3 and the coming Bcorp), you know that all the reasons to incorporate align along this thinking. It's how ALL the laws are written, aside from a few minor and modest filing fees. Tell me again how this is not legally sanctioned corruption?

Ugh. Disgusting.

1/22/2010 08:49:00 AM  
Blogger Joanne Mattera said...

We know Sotomayor and Ginsburg didn't vote for this. And we know that Scalia and Thomas did. Who else made up the unholy majority?

This was the punch to the jaw after the Massachusetts punch to the gut after the earthquake's punch to the heart. Bad, bad week.

1/22/2010 10:30:00 AM  
Blogger Tom Hering said...

In the dissent, Justice Stevens rejected the idea that corporations should be treated the same as persons in the political sphere. If Obama gets to nominate another Justice before the end of his first (and perhaps only) term, the Court may reverse things yet again. In the meantime, Obama has vowed to work with bipartisan leaders in Congress to draft "forceful" and corrective legislation. Expressing your support for this in e-mails to your representatives will help. The one thing that does keep the corporations up at night is active, angry citizens.

1/22/2010 11:00:00 AM  
Blogger Brandon Juhasz said...

Got an email today to sign a letter to Congress addressing this terrible ruling. Campaign Finance before any real reform,

http://my.barackobama.com/FairElections

1/22/2010 11:30:00 AM  
Blogger WILLIAM CHESAPEAKE said...

A very sad day indeed.

1/22/2010 11:49:00 AM  
Anonymous Larry said...

Tom Hering: "The one thing that does keep the corporations up at night is active, angry citizens."

I only wish that were true. The credit card companies slept quite well after raising interest rates for even their best customers 2-3 months ago. The auto insurance companies haven't shown an iota of remorse for dropping customers who have had the nerve to put in a claim. The health insurance companies are as happy as pigs in shit to deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions. Try complaining. These companies will laugh in your face.

The only thing to do in my opinion is to petition the House to impeach the Chief Justice and his partners in crime. Roberts was appointed on a vow to be a non-activist judge. This decision went far beyond the scope of the case as presented to the Court. Every one of us must contact whichever members of the House have any balls left and urge them to start impeachment hearings.

1/22/2010 11:56:00 AM  
Blogger Edward_ said...

A Supreme Court Justice may be impeached by the House of Representatives and removed from office if convicted in a Senate trial, but only for the same types of offenses that would trigger impeachment proceedings for any other government official under Article I and II of the Constitution.

Section 1 of Article III states that judges of Article III courts shall hold their offices "during good behavior." "The phrase "good behavior" has been interpreted by the courts to equate to the same level of seriousness the 'high crimes and misdemeanors" encompasses.

In addition, any federal judge may prosecuted in the criminal courts for criminal activity. If found guilty of a crime in a federal district court, the justice would face the same type of sentencing any other criminal defendant would. The district court could not remove him/her from the Bench. However, any justice found guilty in the criminal courts of any felony would certainly be impeached and, if found guilty, removed from office.

In the United States, impeachment is most often used to remove corrupt lower-court federal judges from office, but it's not unusual to find disgruntled special interest groups circulating petitions on the internet calling for the impeachment of one or all members of the High Court.

1/22/2010 12:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Larry said...

I think this goes beyond "disgruntled special groups." Of course the likelihood of even a trial, much less a conviction of these clowns is remote. But unless average citizens express to the congress a degree of anger commensurate with this blatantly partisan decision, there will be no hope of challenging it.

1/22/2010 12:24:00 PM  
Blogger Edward_ said...

I actually agree with you Larry...I suspect Roberts would be viewed as having committed a crime in the eyes of the founding fathers...just think the odds of that avenue working are slim...more likely Congress will have to correct this through legislation.

1/22/2010 12:26:00 PM  
Blogger Tom Hering said...

Larry, I didn't suggest complaining to the corporations. I suggested getting on board with Obama's effort to trump the Court's ruling.

1/22/2010 01:29:00 PM  
Blogger tony said...

America is not alone amongst western democracies where the vote of the people has been perverted into merely an ennabling process which permits the elected to be seduced, coerced and finally subverted into mere adjuncts of financially powerful special interest groups.

In the past revulsion leading to revolution, whether violent or peaceable, has been the path but today those who represent political power are mere proxies & to attack them would serve nothing. It is not the puppets who are the cause but the puppeteers & because the self-same move outside the electoral process there can be no sanction against them.

1/22/2010 02:39:00 PM  
Blogger Mery Lynn said...

If Bush and Cheney confess in public to torture yet continue to walk free, why would anyone expect the Robert's court to be punished for expanding already existing personhood to corporations?

Maybe Franken can bring up a law requiring politicians and judges to wear their corporate logos the way Nascar and other sports do.

1/22/2010 04:30:00 PM  
Blogger grace said...

STARE DECISIS -( Latin) "to stand by that which is decided." The principal that the precedent decisions are to be followed by the courts. ...

Another heinous result of yesterday's SC decision was not respecting precedent - Stare Decisis. When I was watching the confirmation hearings adhering to precedence was a questions asked of both Alitto and Roberts and they both soberly acknowledged their profound respect. Of course the code for all this was Roe vs. Wade and it being overturned sometime in the future.

1/22/2010 07:57:00 PM  
Blogger Joanne Mattera said...

Mery Lynn says: "Maybe Franken can bring up a law requiring politicians and judges to wear their corporate logos the way Nascar and other sports do."

Alas, with a few exceptions, I expect most garments in DC would be all patch.

1/22/2010 09:10:00 PM  
Blogger Kathy Hodge said...

I suggest we watch carefully the ads that corporations run and boycott accordingly.

1/25/2010 01:04:00 PM  

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