“Some corporations do bad things.” “Corporations bribe politicians.” “Good corporations don’t harm people.” “Corporations are greedy.”
Almost everything we read and hear about corporations destructively misstates what corporations are and why we have them. Understanding what a corporation really is has enormous implications for our democracy.
Corporations Don’t “Do” Things
Here’s the thing: A corporation is a contract. It is a legal agreement enabled by our (“We the People”) government. That’s it.
Corporations are not sentient entities. Contracts don’t “think” or “want” or “need” or say” or “care” or “do” anything. Neither does a will, nor a lease, nor a confidentiality agreement. Corporations also can’t be “greedy” or “criminal” or “good” or “altruistic.” But people can.
When we say these things about corporations we are reinforcing misunderstanding of what a corporation is. This helps the executives running corporations get away with all kind of bad acts.
Continue reading “Understanding What a Corporation Actually Is Can Help Restore Democracy”
This post expands on 2019’s proposal for a government agency, a “Department of Democracy,” to protect and promote democracy.
Democracy doesn’t have an advertising agency, and our discourse is swamped by well-funded anti-democracy efforts — done by self-interested parties like the tobacco and fossil-fuel companies. For obvious reasons such interests want to get government and its rules that protect the public from harms (a.k.a. regulations) “off their backs.”
Our elections have become a game in which secretly-funded disinformation, spread by secretly-funded propaganda outlets, in rigged districts, with voter suppression and apathy deciding who rules. Those minority-selected elected officials perpetuate these barriers in a “doom loop” that is ending democracy.
If what’s left of self-rule survives we need a government agency to take on the role of protecting and promoting democracy. Perhaps we could call it a Department of Democracy.
Continue reading “We Need a Department of Democracy”
Here is a question to ask yourself when you are looking at something the government is doing: “Would a democracy do this?”
When cutting regulations (protections) on corporations, “Is this something a real democracy would do?”
If Congress is working on a tax cut, look at it and ask, “Would a real democracy do this?”
A general rule, ask if a democracy would really do it.