Monday, September 26, 2011

They're NOT People

I found this posted by one of my friends on Facebook, and I like the sentiment. Until Texas actually executes a corporation (like it will happily do to a person -- guilty or innocent), I will never believe a corporation should have the same rights as a real person. Corporations are not people and will never be, and if we need a new constitutional amendment to establish that then we should get on with passing it.


  1. Maybe not Texas, but the federal government can execute a corporation:

    It's called Involuntary Bankruptcy.

    A situation in which a creditor may force a debtor into bankruptcy. A creditor may file for involuntary bankruptcy if the debtor has become severely and consistently delinquent or if a custodian has been appointed for the debtor in the previous six months. After the petition is filed, the debtor usually has 20 days in which to contest it. If the debtor objects to involuntary bankruptcy, he/she must show either that payments are not as delinquent as claimed or that he/she is taking steps to restore solvency. If the debtor does not show this, the bankruptcy court can force liquidation to repay the creditor(s).

    Unlike natural person executions, the defendant can't stretch out the appeals process for twenty years or more.

  2. Capable of reading10/04/2011 7:25 PM

    It is quite apparent you haven't actually thought about the ramifications from such a ludicrous concept. A corporation has been held to a similar standard, rights and duties included, in order to stabilize safeguards for the typical consumer or citizen. A corporation was given particular rights, but more significantly, important duties. You do realize that if a corporation, or any entity for that matter, was stripped of their legal rights, so to would their duties follow? Have you ever heard or explored the concept of personal jurisdiction? How would you propose to litigate claims which stem from the misconduct of corporations if they were considered to be non-persons? Corporations were deemed to be held to a similar standard as a human being, as a real person. It is not possible to charge, punish or convict non-persons of misdeed. So, from your preposterous interpretation of an already ignorant concept, you have reached the manifest solution of that which exactly opposes your original agenda. If anything, perhaps corporations should be held to a higher standard, one that supersedes the petty principles by which humans currently abide.

    Completely erroneous concept. I think your friend may have written it with a crayon.

  3. That's bullshit, COR. And even if it was true (which I don't believe it is), the people who own and run a corporation could (and should) be held responsible for its actions.

  4. "Capable of reading" makes some compelling arguments. Let me simplify and personalize some of them:

    Ted, let's say you're injured by a faulty product made by a corporation. If the corporation is no longer considered a person, who would you sue for damages: the inventor (who probably assigned his patent rights to the corporation)? The CEO (whose pockets are considerably less deep than the those of the corporation)? The worker who assembled the product (whose pockets are even shallower)? Each stockholder individually (try litigating that case!)?

    Conversely, let's say you own a mutual fund that invests in a number of corporations. As part-owner of each of these companies, should you be held individually liable for the company's wrongdoings, since the corporation (as a non-person) no longer is?

  5. A corporation is a legal entity, whether they have the rights of a person or not. Are you really saying a legal entity cannot be sued or held responsible unless it is declared to be a person? Are unions, PACs and special interest groups immune to the law and being sued because they are not corporations and therefore not a person? Of course not. Your argument makes no sense.

  6. Are you really saying a legal entity cannot be sued or held responsible unless it is declared to be a person?

    Person: An entity recognized by the law as separate and independent, with legal rights and existence, including the right to sue and be sued, to sign contracts, to receive gifts, to appear in court either by themselves or by lawyer, and, generally, other powers incidental to the full expression of the entity in law. {Emphasis added]


    So the answer is yes, under the law, only a person can sue and be sued.

    The law also distinguishes between persons (which includes business entities as well as human beings) and individuals (human beings only). Not all individuals are "persons" (e.g. minors can't sign contracts).

    I think you're getting hung up on the word "person," Ted.

  7. What I'm hung up on is corporations having the same rights as individual human beings. It just ain't right.


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