More Rights

So, as is usual around this time of day, i'm reading up on [Metafilter](http://www.metafilter.com/comments.mefi/22664 "Can Corporations Lie?"), seeing what the latest crap is, and there's a link to some [commentary](http://www.commondreams.org/views03/0101-07.htm "The right to lie?") on a Nike-related court case.

An interesting quirk of US law is that, for legal purposes, corporations are considered to be persons. They enjoy many of the same rights that people do, and in a sense, there is a good reason for this - contract law. Essentially, only a person can enter into a contract with another person, so in order to enforce contracts signed by corporations beyond the tenure of their board of directors, they have to have some of the legal status of a person. However, as is pointed out too often, and rightly so, corporations in this age enjoy many of the protections of personhood, but experience few, if any, of the limitations.

And i quote:

>Corporations are non-living, non-breathing, legal fictions. They feel no pain. They don't need clean
>water to drink, fresh air to breathe, or healthy food to consume. They can live forever. They can't be
>put in prison. They can change their identity or appearance in a day, change their citizenship in an
>hour, rip off parts of themselves and create entirely new entities. Some have compared corporations
>with robots, in that they are human creations that can outlive individual humans, performing their
>assigned tasks forever.

It's a pretty valid critique, and one that -- i admit -- i hadn't really given any thought to. Now i will, and it may have an impact on my generally pro-corp stance. Not to any great extent, true, but i'll think twice before really boosting them.

That is all.

Comments !