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Thomas Paine's "Rights of Man" are replaced by Antonin Scalia's "Rights of Corporate Persons." And the Robber Barons and their spokespeople are as pleased as can be.  As Judith Miller wrote in The New York Times on January 30, 1991, quoting a local in Saudi Arabia: "War is good for business."
As if corporate personhood was in any way a concept due to Scalia. It's over 100 years old.
In Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad Company (118 U.S. 394 (1886)), at the lower court levels the question of whether corporations were persons had been argued, and these arguments were submitted in writing to the Court. However, before oral argument took place, Chief Justice Waite announced: "The court does not wish to hear argument on the question whether the provision in the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which forbids a State to deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws, applies to these corporations. We are all of the opinion that it does."
I have seen it claimed that corporate prsonhood resulted from something a clerk from a lower court wrote on a document related to this Santa Clara case, but the issue had been argued repeatedly before.

And I find the resort to Judith Miller quoting a Saudi a curious source for "War is good for business". One might as well quote Smedley Butler's War is a Racket, except that that would make the US government and military, and American industry, look bad, not the Saudis.

Nothing is 'mere'. — Richard P. Feynman

by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Sep 12th, 2006 at 04:26:38 PM EST
I wanted to link to the Miller quote, but the article was too old. I think she's on progressive minds right now because there was recently some big brouhaha at the New York Times that resulted in her leaving or being fired...?

For a minute I thought you said "corporate priesthood." No matter where the concept came from, this has really become a monstrous concept in the U.S. It allows private individuals to get away with all sorts of spoils (robbing employees as well as shareholders) while allowing the responsibility to be diffused/deflected by an anonymous facade. :-(

Manifest Dignity!

by breakingranks (manifestdignity@breakingranks.net) on Tue Sep 12th, 2006 at 05:46:44 PM EST
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