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Outrage of an Activist Supreme Court

March 14, 2010

by Robert Poteat

The latest outrage of an activist Supreme Court of the United States is an expansion of a specious legal doctrine that corporations are persons within the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment.   The legal doctrine was adopted during a case decided in 1886 in which the Southern Pacific Railroad Company was appealing taxes assessed by jurisdictions in the state of California.  It seems the state of California had not sufficiently defined its tax laws for corporations.

To be kind, a corporation is a legal fiction.  It has no mass, energy, or sentience; it cannot think.  Corporation is a myth, a product of magical thinking, not to say lie.  It is little different than a child’s fairy tale.  Of course, grown up children, many of them lawyers, pretend it is real.  Under that pretense, grown up children act out little plays in a theatre called court.  By such magic, corporations become persons. The little dramas can be even more bizarre as in the Dredd Scott decision which treated living humans as property.

What do they feed lawyers in law school?  Do lawyers who can’t lawyer become judges?  Do judges who can’t judge become Supreme Court of the United States judges?  I jest only partly.

Another myth originating from legal make believe is that money is speech.  Consequently limiting what a corporation can spend bribing candidates for government office to get what they want is an infringement of free speech.  The bribes are identified euphemistically as campaign contributions.  This is the point of controversy.  It is too bizarre to make up.  A line from a movie that I saw recently was that the difference in truth and fiction is that fiction has to make sense.

The great danger of the corporate myth can be compared to religions.  Humans have committed every conceivable atrocity when allowed to shield themselves by committing atrocities in the names of gods.  It is so with corporations when corporate officials carry out the corporate ethic.  The corporate ethic is not the quarterly bottom line is everything, it is the only thing.

Corporate officers fit the definition of psychopath as published in the manual of mental disorders.  Psychopathic symptoms mostly relate to not caring, not feeling guilt, and practicing deception in fulfilling the corporate ethic.

Is this who we want bribing our government officials?

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