Government and Corporations

Constitution

“The government of the people, by the people, and for the people” doesn’t mention corporations—yet corporations now deeply influence the people’s government.

Citizens United

People interested in the political world know about the 2010 Citizens United ruling that allows corporations to give unlimited funds to political causes.

Conflict

But corporations are not people. They do not have a limited lifespan. They can’t be sent to jail if they commit a crime. Yes, these economic constructs are composed on people, but those people already have individual rights. “Corporations are people, too” is double-dipping for citizenship rights. Are corporations going to get the right to vote next?

Consequences

Corporations are concerned with their financial well-being as it is affected by laws, regulations, and enforcement by the government.

  • Once corporations are successful, they no longer desire competition. They desire protection of their market share.
  • That desire makes them want regulations which stifles competition and enhances their market ownership.
  • That makes them promote actions contrary to the public good.

Huge corporations have financial and political interests in foreign countries that are not necessarily aligned with the interests of the United States.

Microsoft building in USA, but it's financial interests are worldwide
Microsoft is headquarters in the US, but has foreign financial interests which can misalign with the US
  • Corporations cannot be clearly defined as solely US, untinged by foreign interests.
  • Financing of US political causes is being influenced by foreign money—despite the fancy footwork of accounting stratagems.

But we are allowing multinational corporations to affect US political elections!

Corporation as a Person. A building rises out of the neckline of a business suit
Corporation as a Person

Under the prevailing interpretation of the US Constitution, corporations have the rights and responsibilities similar to people. In many ways, I don’t have a problem with that, but …

… it’s wrong that they can actively participate in the political process. The country exists to promote life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness of real people, not artificial associations of people.

In addition, corporations have allegiances to profits, to their stock holders, and their consumers which are not solely in the United States. Their goals are not aligned with those of our country.


By Coolcaesar – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=63236663

Constitution