Volatility

April 3, 2012

The Definition of Pro-Corporate

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To want the continued existence of the corporate form.
 
To not seek the abolition of the corporate form.
 
For example, to seek only the revocation of corporate personhood is a vain, incoherent piece of reformism. The personhood jurisprudence and propaganda, dedicated to arrogating all rights to a corporation even as it is formally absolved of all constructive responsibilities, is inherent in capitalism and corporatism itself. Why have “private” corporations in the first place, if not for this purpose? Infrastructure projects could always have been undertaken by conventional government. They were “privatized” only to better absolve cadres of personal responsibility. So it is for any corporation. Constitutional personhood therefore follows from the existential concept, and is not at all an “abuse”.
 
That’s why we must constitute an abolition movement. The only coherent One Simple Demand is total abolition, of the corporate form and all other structural aspects of kleptocracy. Anything short of that is unworthy of us as moral agents, democratic citizens, productive workers, and human beings. Anything short of that also won’t work, as has been proven over and over by now.
 
(At most, there might be an educational utility in a movement for an amendment abolishing personhood, but only to educate about the evils of corporations as such, and to demonstrate the unaccountability of the system, the fraudulence of its “democracy”, when the amendment is killed. So a one-off demonstration action may be in order. But anyone who’d persist in seeing this as the goal in itself, who would want to keep trying the same failed action, or give up after its failure, is really just a poser or scammer.)

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4 Comments

  1. I thought about you yesterday, while reading my book by a top notch ? woman writing about our bloodthirsty collective desire to punish.
    She set down some cool facts in her thin book.
    Here goes :
    p.84 in “Pourquoi faudrait-il punir?” (Why are we supposed to punish ?), by Catherine Baker

    “In France we have paid an astronomically high price for abolishing the death penalty. As if the judges wanted revenge for being deprived of their favorite bloody toy. In 1980, 12 people were condemned, during the year, to perpetuity, not one to having his/her head chopped off by the guillotine.
    In 1981, capital punishment was abolished.
    In 1982, 27 condamnations to perpetuity.
    In 1985, 44…
    In 1989, 53…

    We are witnessing a tragic game of up the ante. The more repressive the State, the more violent the taste of defiance and hate in return.”

    In 2001, I warned people here in France of the particularly TRAGIC consequences of submitting willingly and enthusiastically to U.S. ideological colonization in the country’s current PAGAN HATE AND VENGEANCE (virtual…) campaigns.

    Forgiving is the name of the game, friends, because the alternative is simply endless escalation until Armageddon. (Somebody has to be the first to.. STOP escalating.)
    Is that what we want ?
    The human animal is pretty frightening. More lemming than the lemmings who are less lemming than we thought…

    Comment by Debra — April 3, 2012 @ 4:25 am

  2. @Debra, Calling for the abolition of corporations has nothing to do with punishment or vengeance for past wrongs and everything to do with preventing future harm. Subtle, I know.

    Comment by Tao Jonesing — April 3, 2012 @ 10:53 am

  3. Hey Russ! More interesting ideas from the pre-modern Islamic world- the waqf!

    Briefly, in premodern Islamic societies, social services (mosques, hospitals, orphanages, homes for abandoned women, schools, etc) were provided not by the state, but by waqf institutions. Waqfs were basically charitable trust endowments (there’s some speculation that common law trusts derive from the experiences of crusaders with waqfs). They were designed to operate in perpetuity and generally provided with the resources to do so. So a hospital (Bazian mentions that in 10th century Baghdad there were 5 waqf hospitals, at least 3 of which had medical schools (!!)) would be provided in its endowment with agricultural land and perhaps a market, from which it would generate the surplus to provide its services. The net result across society was a network of interdependent, state-independent social institutions. Seems quite similar to some of the concepts we’ve been discussing here. Bazian doesn’t gloss over the fact that there were all kinds of problems with waqf administrators perverting the waqfs for their own ends, so there’s obviously room for improvement- but I thought it was an interesting model and certainly good proof that the kinds of complex state-independent social institutions we want to see have existed and can exist again.

    Comment by paper mac — April 3, 2012 @ 4:14 pm

    • Thanks for doing this research, paper mac. I still need to block out time to watch these videos, but I’ll certainly do so.

      So you think this is a potential model for the way a community can organize its self-“investment”? Although it sounds like we’d want to be more democratic about how the trusts are administered.

      Comment by Russ — April 4, 2012 @ 5:49 am


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