WE THE PEOPLE VS. THEM THE CORPORATIONS
IF CORPORATIONS ARE GOING TO BE TREATED AS LEGAL PERSONS, THEY SHOULD HAVE PERSONAL ACCOUNTABILITY, TOO, ESPECIALLY FOR HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES.
by Anonymous Patriots
AMERICAN INTELLIGENCE MEDIA
Is it a coincidence that Aim4Truth declared May to be “Serco Awareness” month and now we hear that Serco’s $80 billion in fraud charges in the United Kingdom are driving Serco into bankruptcy?
Isn’t it marvelous when Americans4Innovation finds the golden share of the British Crown that owns Serco and that the Queen’s Privy Counselor Sir Geoffrey Pattie is the Queen’s agent, and that Pattie’s intelligence agency is Strategic Communications Laboratories, that SCL collapses at the same time?
Was it the disinfecting brilliant light of day that shown upon the corrupt connections between Serco and Lockheed Martin, the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE), SCL Group, Terrington Management, BAE, Leidos, CACI, In-Q-Tel and ultimately the Highland Forum that helped “bring down” Serco?
Serco is the perfect modern-day replica of the archetypal corporation – the British East India Company – who was known by the motto, “trading with a sword.” We have written extensively about this subject and offer readers many selections at the end of this report. So that we can continue making progress with our truth disclosure, we have to assume that the reader is somewhat familiar with our other articles and reports.
…SO WHAT IS A CORPORATION?
Corporations have only one intent – to make money for shareholders who are protected by the limited liability of a corporation that has “person” status for rights but immunity for crimes. Corporations plan to commit crimes and when they get caught, they simply pay the fines and penalties. No single “person” in the corporation is held responsible for the crime and seldom suffer criminal prosecution that includes jail-time. Corporations are “exempt” from suffering the same fate that you or I would suffer if we committed the same crime. The evidence is abundantly clear that the bigger the corporation, the bigger the crimes.
THE MOST ASKED QUESTION ABOUT ‘EVIL CORPORATIONS’ IS: “HOW DID IT HAPPEN THAT CORPORATIONS ARE IN A STATUS THAT IS OBVIOUSLY HIGHER THAN A COMMON CITIZEN’S?”
We recently released an Anonymous Patriot Citizen Intelligence Report on the origins and corruption of the legal system that has its roots in the City of London UK and the Vatican City. (See: The British Crown Runs the U.S. Legal System) We showed how courts raise lawyers up into a “titled” position called Esquire – a type of nobility. Lawyers become a “higher class” by being called to the Temple Bar and the Four Inns of Court which have their equivalent in America.
These “legal nobility” are like the British status of landed gentry, and by such appointment can then have standing to act in the courts of law. These courts of law constitute another titled position that is above the common person, a noble estate of sorts. Judges are like nobility who rule in “their court-room”, which they act like they own and rule with complete sovereignty in contradistinction to the rule of law.
Corporations are another status of a titled position or authority that is above the commoner who is subject to common law instead of admiralty, merchant, or cannon law. The common person may not, in many cases, even speak before a court because they have no standing or status to do so.
When viewed this way, you could reasonably conclude that courts, lawyers, corporations, churches, and monarchies are outside of the law. Politicians and government employees are often exempt from prosecution also. But the common person is not “called to the bar”, therefore, cannot truly utilize the very court systems that can prosecute him.
Courts (all powerful churches), judges (little popes) and lawyers (titled gentry) protect the corporations (monarchies-nobility) who don’t have to answer to lower crimes that commoners are accountable for. In keeping with current British law, commoners may not even “question the affairs” of the Crown (Monsanto, Lockheed, Raytheon, etc.).
Whenever corporations have “big” problems, they go to “big courts” – U. S. Federal courts – where corporate interests are always put before the lower interests of We the People (commoners). The Supreme Court is the best example of BIG courts bowing before BIG corporations that they say are “too big to fail.” These really BIG corporations are usually warlord bankers, brokers, and money managers.
Legal protection for corporations is unlimited, especially in the realm of tax breaks for the biggest companies. Many of the largest corporations in America pay no taxes and often claim their main headquarters in another country, a hedge fund in a tax-haven, incorporated in an off-shore account, incorporated in Delaware, or thinly spread between many dummy corporations that shuffle and hide the money so little or no taxes are paid. The commoner, We the People, don’t get huge tax breaks or get to legally, in plain sight, hide tax-evasion.
It takes a legal background to navigate the American Corporatocracy and dodge taxes, gain tax advantages, avoid legal problems, stay out of jail, and make sure that the corporate burden is paid for by the commoners, not the corporate nobility. The original 13th Amendment to the U. S. Constitution prohibited lawyers from holding public office. There was the reason for that!
The “Three Estates” of the old world still apply: church (clergy), monarchy (nobility) and the common person. The power usually attributed to the Third Estate – the commoner – is the power of the Fourth Estate, which is the power of public opinion, the media. Only through information, truth, and awareness does the commoner have the power to navigate a court system that was created to consolidate and maintain the power of the clergy, nobility and the lawyers who rule the rigged court system, which we call – Fake Justice.
A monarchical corporation gains total control over church, state, and the people when government allows a monopoly to rule a sector of the economy like Amazon, Google or Facebook currently do. A “Corporate Monarch” becomes complete after the Supreme Court gives it immunity from common prosecution, compromised federal judges (acting like nobility) dole out fines instead of criminal sentences, and lawyers plan the crimes ahead of time and hide them until they get caught. When the Corporate Monarch gets caught, the titled nobility of the Bar haggle for smaller fines and penalties while commoners are crushed in the process.
We intend in this article to expose the underbelly and corruption of corporations and show the evidence that reveals their premeditated crimes against We the People. The mechanisms and machinations of corporate evil and crime are well worn paths that grow deeper with every new corporate aggression against humans and their environment. Corporations are complicit with genocide, endless war, environmental catastrophes, human depopulation, and a litany of evil crimes that seldom get prosecuted.
The time has come to reduce the status of corporations to “less than a person” because their crimes demonstrate that they are indeed – “less than human.”
BUDGETED CORPORATE CRIMES – THE COST OF DOING BUSINESS
Corporations carry out some of the most horrific human rights abuses of modern times, but it is increasingly difficult to hold them accountable. Economic globalization and the rise of transnational corporate power have created a favorable climate for corporate human rights abusers, which are governed principally by the codes of supply and demand and show loyalty only to their stockholders.
When corporations act like criminals, we have the right and the power to stop them, holding leaders and multinational corporations alike to the accords they have signed.
Corporations now spend about $2.6 billion a year on reported lobbying expenditures—more than the $2 billion we spend to fund the House ($1.18 billion) and Senate ($860 million). It’s a gap that has been widening since corporate lobbying began to regularly exceed the combined House-Senate budget in the early 2000s.
Today, the biggest companies have upwards of 100 lobbyists representing them, allowing them to be everywhere, all the time. For every dollar spent on lobbying by labor unions and public-interest groups together, large corporations and their associations now spend $34. Of the 100 organizations that spend the most on lobbying, 95 consistently represent business.
Essentially, corporations pay politicians to “look the other way” and never hold corporations accountable for morality, ethics, or decency. Corporate lobbyists demonstrate that our system of government, run by lawyers and the federal courts, is simply a corporatocracy that is supported 100% by the political machine. Our government is bought and paid for by corrupt money from corporations.
SUPREME COURT SIDES WITH CORPORATIONS
In April of 2018, The U. S. Supreme Court decided by a 5-to-4 vote to bar human rights suits against foreign corporations. Thus, foreign corporations may not be sued in American courts for complicity in human rights abuses abroad.
Justice Anthony M. Kennedy said such suits should not be allowed without explicit congressional authorization. “Courts are not well suited to make the required policy judgments that are implicated by corporate liability in cases like this one,” he wrote.
Justice Sonia Sotomayor said the Supreme Court had created a double standard for corporations. “It allows these entities to take advantage of the significant benefits of the corporate form and enjoy fundamental rights without having to shoulder attendant fundamental responsibilities,” Sotomayor wrote, citing decisions allowing corporations to spend freely in candidate elections and to deny contraception coverage to female workers for religious reasons.
The case turned on the meaning of the Alien Tort Statute, a cryptic 1789 law that allows federal district courts to hear “any civil action by an alien for a tort only, committed in violation of the law of nations or a treaty of the United States.”
Justice Sotomayor pointed out that just because Congress saw fit to permit suits only against individuals for torture and extra-judicial killing doesn’t mean it meant to bar suits against corporations in connection with other “law-of-nations” violations.
Sotomayor made a persuasive case that the Alien Tort Statute should indeed be interpreted to cover wrongdoing by corporations as well as individuals. She also noted the irony that under the new ruling, “foreign corporations — entities capable of wrongdoing under our domestic law — remain immune from liability for human rights abuses, however egregious they may be.”
THE FOUNDATIONS OF CORPORATE CRIMES
You may be shocked to read the following facts about corporations that seem to make them above the law, unquestionable sovereigns, and criminals who act with impunity. Many corporations are more powerful than nations. Sam Walton was the 28th most economically powerful force (nation) in the world at one time.
Many other facts about corporations are equally as disturbing as we find in the facts below.
- In 2016, 37 of the top 100 economies in the world were multinational corporations, with Wal-Mart Stores annual revenue exceeding the GDP of all but the top 27 states in the world.
- Because the corporation is legally considered a “person”, individual shareholders are not legally responsible for the corporation’s debts and damages beyond their investment in the corporation.
- Individual employees, managers, and directors of corporations are not generally liable for the corporation’s actions.
- Corporate personhood in the United States is the extension of a limited subset of the same constitutional rights as We the People.
- Corporations are a “legal person” for the purposes of conducting business while shielding individual shareholdersfrom personal liability.
- Corporate lobby money controls politics through Super PACS and campaign financial donations.
- At the bottom-line, corporations are inexorably driven to immoral conduct by the fundamental structure of corporate law, or to put the point colloquially, “Corporations make good people do bad things.”
- Corporate scandals are inevitable because the modem corporation has a structural imperative to show a short-term profit even if this requires committing fraud and/or shifting costs onto employees, the community and the environment.
- Corporations cannot be held accountable for human rights violations. Corporations can be protected by human rights law while they can enjoy impunity for committing human rights violations.
- Over the past 60 years, the legal status of corporations in human rights law has been protected through the European and the Inter-American human rights systems.
- Shareholders have no responsibility for what is done, to whom or to what injury is done. They are legally immune and are free to be socially irresponsible.
- By law, the sole obligation of public corporations is to maximize profit for shareholders.
- Unlike human beings, corporations have only one motive: to get as much stuff as possible through animalistic greed, with the single focus of profit maximization.
HUMAN RIGHTS VS. SHAREHOLDER’S DIVIDENDS
Corporate personhood is the legal notion that a corporation, separately from its associated human beings (like owners, managers, or employees), has at least some of the legal rights and responsibilities enjoyed by natural “persons” (physical humans). For example, corporations have the right to enter into contracts with other parties and to sue or be sued in court in the same way as natural persons or unincorporated associations of persons.
In a U.S. historical context, the phrase ‘Corporate Personhood’ refers to the ongoing legal debate over the extent to which rights traditionally associated with natural persons should also be afforded to corporations.
A headnote issued by the Court Reporter in the 1886 Supreme Court case Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad Co. claimed to state the sense of the Court regarding the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment as it applies to corporations, without the Court having actually made a decision or issued a written opinion on that issue. This was the first time that the Supreme Court was reported to hold that the Fourteenth Amendment’s equal protection clause granted constitutional protections to corporations as well as to natural persons, although numerous other cases, since Dartmouth College v. Woodward in 1819, had recognized that corporations were entitled to some of the protections of the Constitution.
In Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., the Court found that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 exempted Hobby Lobby from aspects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act because those aspects placed a substantial burden on the closely held company’s owners’ exercise of free religion.
As a matter of interpretation of the word “person” in the Fourteenth Amendment, U.S. courts have extended certain constitutional protections to corporations. The basis for allowing corporations to assert such protections under the U.S. Constitution is that they are organizations of people, and the people should not be deprived of their constitutional rights when they act collectively. Thus, treating corporations as having legal rights allows corporations to sue and to be sued, provides a single entity for easier taxation and regulation, simplifies complex transactions that would otherwise involve, in the case of large corporations, thousands of people, and protects the individual rights of the shareholders as well as the right of association.
Generally, corporations are not able to claim constitutional protections that would not otherwise be available to persons acting as a group. For example, the Supreme Court has not recognized a Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination for a corporation, since the right can be exercised only on an individual basis. Since the Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission in 2010, upholding the rights of corporations to make political expenditures under the First Amendment, there have been several calls for a Constitutional amendment to abolish corporate personhood.
During the colonial era, British corporations were chartered by the crown to do business in North America. This practice continued in the early United States. They were often granted monopolies as part of the chartering process. For example, the controversial Bank Bill of 1791 chartered a 20-year corporate monopoly for the First Bank of the United States. Although the Federal government has from time to time chartered corporations, the general chartering of corporations has been left to the states.
In the late 18th and early 19th centuries, corporations began to be chartered in greater numbers by the states, under general laws allowing for incorporation at the initiative of citizens, rather than through specific acts of the legislature.
In the late 19th century, most notably in New Jersey and Delaware, anyone could form corporations without any particular governmental grant or authorization, and thus without the government-granted monopolies that had been common in charters granted by the Crown or by acts of the legislature.
In 1818, the United States Supreme Court decided Trustees of Dartmouth College v. Woodward – 17 U.S. 518 (1819), writing: “The opinion of the Court, after mature deliberation, is that this corporate charter is a contract, the obligation of which cannot be impaired without violating the Constitution of the United States. This opinion appears to us to be equally supported by reason, and by the former decisions of this Court.” Beginning with this opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court has continuously recognized corporations as having the same rights as natural persons to contract and to enforce contracts.
The corporate personhood aspect of the campaign finance debate turns on Buckley v. Valeo (1976) and Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission (2010): Buckley ruled that political spending is protected by the First Amendment right to free speech, while Citizens United ruled that corporate political spending is protected, holding that corporations have a First Amendment right to free speech.
The laws of the United States hold that a legal entity (like a corporation or non-profit organization) shall be treated under the law as a person except when otherwise noted. This rule of construction is specified in 1 U.S.C. §1 (United States Code), which states:
In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, unless the context indicates otherwise—the words “person” and “whoever” include corporations, companies, associations, firms, partnerships, societies, and joint stock companies, as well as individuals.
THE ARCHETYPAL BRITISH CORPORATION
The British East India Company is one of the worst corporations ever and is the perfect example that modern corporate monopolies follow. These guys manufactured wars with India, Burma and China. You think Nestlé is bad for sucking up all the water in some African regions and selling it back to them? These guys literally had their own beer created (India Pale Ale) that they used to destroy India’s native water replenishment.
You think Bayer is evil for selling bad drugs infected with poison? The British East India Company addicted the majority of the Chinese population to opium so that they could continue their monopoly and increase shareholder’s dividends.
The British East India Company commanded an army, stole whatever land they wanted, and were slavers extraordinaire. They trafficked drugs, guns, people, and resources cheerfully certain that Africans and Asians were subhuman anyway so it didn’t matter. They directed nations, founded colonies, and conquered an entire continent — in addition to being far and away the richest and most powerful corporation in history, they’ve probably had the biggest impact on world history of any company.
They were only disbanded after the British Empire assumed direct control of India after the British East India Company’s mismanagement caused widespread revolts and massacres. They finally filed for bankruptcy after the British government essentially had them nationalized into British imperialism and corporatism.
The British East India Company is often the role model for modern corporations that are the top military contractors in the world. Below is a list of the world’s largest arms manufacturers and other military service companies who profit the most from a war-driven economy just like the British East India Company did.
The information below is based on a list published by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute for 2015.
Boeing 96.1 billion
Airbus 71.4 billion
United Technologies 61.0 billion
Lockheed Martin 46.1 billion
General Dynamics 31.4 billion
BAE Systems 27.3 billion
Raytheon 23.2 billion
Northrop Grumman 20.0 billion
Leonardo S.p.A. 14.4 billion
LC Technologies 10.4 billion
War is big business for corporations who, in almost all cases, are transnational companies serving many other nations – our enemies included. Whoever can pay gets to play with these war-mongers and economic terrorists. Often, these very corporations get no-bid contracts and then rip-off the government with impunity. The Pentagon alone is missing trillions in transactions with these warlord corporations. Hardly a single U. S. military contractor doesn’t have multiple cases of misconduct, price manipulation, and criminal behavior on a very regular basis.
THE LARGER THE COMPANY, THE MORE BLATANT THE CRIMES AND IN ALMOST ALL CASES, NO ONE EVER GOES TO JAIL – EVEN WHEN PEOPLE DIE FROM CORPORATE ACTION.
Corporations and corruption go hand in glove and corruption is an expected outcome that companies make plans for ahead of time. The top executive in large corporations all have “golden parachutes” that protect them from being held personally responsible for their corporate crimes because they know ahead of time that they are going to commit those crimes.
Corporate warlords are corrupt through and through and rotate in and out of top positions in the corporate world like musical chairs. These warlords are fired at one corporation for heinous crimes on one day but hired a week later by another corporation to carry out their criminal agenda. Fines and penalties are exacted on these warlords, and no one bats an eye. Paying governmental fines from budgeted crimes is simply part of corporate daily business and it is a given that top executives seldom ever go to jail.
CORPORATE MISCONDUCT PRODUCES FINES NOT JAIL TIME
Corporate misconduct is a “standard operating procedure” which is expected and government fines are simply part of “doing business” that is built into the budget from the beginning. Below are just a few examples of the corruption documented at the Project On Government Oversite website at: http://www.pogo.org/about/. The chart names the company, number of misconduct instances and the total penalties.
The corporate “arms industry” is composed of a handful of global corporations responsible for the manufacturing and sales of weapons and military technology. The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) estimated that global military expenditures were roughly $1.8 trillion per year at a minimum.
Global corporate arms sales control the economic world and kills millions of people for the sake of shareholder’s dividends. Profits drive the global economic machine that consumes human life. One is not even considered a “bad person” for being a corporate arms dealer. As a matter of fact, arms dealers like Adnan Khashoggi, Hillary and Bill Clinton, George H. W. Bush’s Far West Group, Halliburton, Blackwater, etc., are often well-respected by world leaders and a special place is set for them at state dinners.
One might ask how in the world we have arrived at the point that corporations of all sorts rule our world and we knew nothing of it except rumors of “conspiracy theories” that claimed the Rothschilds, the Queen, and central bankers own the world.
Who knew that the old British systems have bled into American systems through 10,000 shadow government workers called Senior Executive Service members who control all U. S. Federal government agencies?
Who could have imagined that the British Inns of Court infiltrated the America justice system as early as the Declaration of Independence through lawyers who were loyal to the Crown?
Who could have imagined the Fake Justice system that would come to rule America?
We need a historical perspective to answer these questions and the article below is a wonderful summary of the key points concerning the history of corporations in America. We could not say these ideas in fewer words, so we leave it to the authors from Reclaim Democracy to inform our perspective of the history of U. S. corporations.
OUR HIDDEN HISTORY OF CORPORATIONS IN THE UNITED STATES
THE FOLLOWING IS A CONDENSED VERSION OF ARTICLES TAKEN FROM THE WEBSITE RECLAIM DEMOCRACY WHICH PROVIDE AN EXCELLENT SUMMARY OF THE HIDDEN HISTORY OF CORPORATIONS
When American colonists declared independence from England in 1776, they also freed themselves from control by English corporations that extracted their wealth and dominated trade. After fighting a revolution to end this exploitation, our country’s founders retained a healthy fear of corporate power and wisely limited corporations exclusively to a business role. Corporations were forbidden from attempting to influence elections, public policy, and other realms of civic society.
Initially, the privilege of incorporation was granted selectively to enable activities that benefited the public, such as construction of roads or canals. Enabling shareholders to profit was seen as a means to that end. The states also imposed conditions:
- Corporate charters (licenses to exist) were granted for a limited time and could be revoked promptly for violating laws.
- Corporations could engage only in activities necessary to fulfill their chartered purpose.
- Corporations could not own stock in other corporations nor own any property that was not essential to fulfilling their chartered purpose.
- Corporations were often terminated if they exceeded their authority or caused public harm.
- Owners and managers were responsible for criminal acts committed on the job.
- Corporations could not make any political or charitable contributions nor spend money to influence law-making.
For 100 years after the American Revolution, legislators maintained tight control of the corporate chartering process. Because of widespread public opposition, early legislators granted very few corporate charters, and only after debate. Citizens governed corporations by detailing operating conditions not just in charters but also in state constitutions and state laws. Incorporated businesses were prohibited from taking any action that legislators did not specifically allow.
States also limited corporate charters to a set number of years. Unless a legislature renewed an expiring charter, the corporation was dissolved and its assets were divided among shareholders. Citizen authority clauses limited capitalization, debts, land holdings, and sometimes, even profits. They required a company’s accounting books to be turned over to a legislature upon request. The power of large shareholders was limited by scaled voting, so that large and small investors had equal voting rights. Interlocking directorates were outlawed. Shareholders had the right to remove directors at will.
In Europe, charters protected directors and stockholders from liability for debts and harms caused by their corporations. American legislators explicitly rejected this corporate shield. The penalty for abuse or misuse of the charter was not a plea bargain and a fine, but dissolution of the corporation.
In 1819, the U.S. Supreme Court tried to strip states of this sovereign right by overruling a lower court’s decision that allowed New Hampshire to revoke a charter granted to Dartmouth College by King George III. The Court claimed that since the charter contained no revocation clause, it could not be withdrawn. The Supreme Court’s attack on state sovereignty outraged citizens. Laws were written or re-written and new state constitutional amendments passed to circumvent the Dartmouth College v Woodward ruling.
Over several decades starting in 1844, nineteen states amended their constitutions to make corporate charters subject to alteration or revocation by their legislatures. As late as 1855, it seemed that the Supreme Court had gotten the people’s message when in Dodge v. Woolsey it reaffirmed state’s powers over “artificial bodies.”
Contests over charters were battles to control labor, resources, community rights, and political sovereignty. More and more frequently, corporations were abusing their charters to become conglomerates and trusts. They converted the nation’s resources and treasures into private fortunes, creating factory systems and company towns. Political power began flowing to absentee owners, rather than community-rooted enterprises.
The industrial age forced a nation of farmers to become wage earners, and they became fearful of unemployment–a new fear that corporations quickly learned to exploit. Company towns arose and blacklists of labor organizers and workers who spoke up for their rights became common. When workers began to organize, industrialists and bankers hired private armies to keep them in line. They bought newspapers to paint businessmen as heroes and shape public opinion. Corporations bought state legislators, then announced legislators were corrupt and said that they used too much of the public’s resources to scrutinize every charter application and corporate operation.
Government spending during the Civil War brought these corporations fantastic wealth. Corporate executives paid “borers” to infest Congress and state capitals, bribing elected and appointed officials alike. During this time, legislators were persuaded to give corporations limited liability, decreased citizen authority over them, and extended durations of charters.
Attempts were made to keep strong charter laws in place, but with the courts applying legal doctrines that made protection of corporations and corporate property the center of constitutional law, citizen sovereignty was undermined. As corporations grew stronger, government and the courts became easier prey. They freely reinterpreted the U.S. Constitution and transformed common law doctrines.
One of the most severe blows to citizen authority arose out of the 1886 Supreme Court case of Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad. Though the court did not make a ruling on the question of “corporate personhood,” thanks to misleading notes of a clerk, the decision subsequently was used as precedent to hold that a corporation was a “natural person.” From that point on, the 14th Amendment, enacted to protect rights of freed slaves, was used routinely to grant corporations constitutional “personhood.” Justices have since struck down hundreds of local, state and federal laws enacted to protect people from corporate harm based on this illegitimate premise. Armed with these “rights,” corporations increased control over resources, jobs, commerce, politicians, even judges and the law.
A United States Congressional committee concluded in 1941, “The principal instrument of the concentration of economic power and wealth has been the corporate charter with unlimited power….”
(END OF SELECTION)
Many U.S.-based corporations are now transnational, but the corrupted charter remains the legal basis for their existence. Citizens can reassert the convictions of our nation’s founders who struggled successfully to free us from corporate rule in the past. These changes must occur at the most fundamental level — the U.S. Constitution.
A SHORT LIST OF SOME CORPORATE CRIMES
We have established that corporations often willfully conduct “misconduct” knowing that they will simply have to pay a fee, if caught. No “one” is actually conducting a criminal act because a corporation is a “person” – but is also “not a person” who can be locked up for committing crimes, even murder. The list of corporate evil includes the crimes of the Dutch East India and British East India companies which continue to this day: war, murder, slavery, theft, rape, poisoning, torture, etc., etc., etc., ad nauseam. We the People are well aware of the crimes and have all suffered the misfortunes of corporate greed and their insatiable need to control our economic, political, and personal lives.
In an effort to show some well-known corporations’ evil sins, we bring you a “short-list” of some of the more egregious criminal corporate activities that can be found in open media. Mind you, this is a very short-list of the many crimes of corporations.
- Dow Chemical ravaged the health of millions of Vietnamese and U.S. Veterans caused by its lethal Vietnam War defoliant, Agent Orange.
- Dow developed and perfected Napalm, a brutal chemical weapon that burned many innocents to death in Vietnam and other wars.
- In 1988, Dow provided pesticides to Saddam Hussein despite warnings that they could be used to produce chemical weapons.
- On December 3, 1984, a chemical leak from a UCC pesticide plant in Bhopal gassed thousands of people to death and left more than 150,000 disabled or dying. Dow still refuses to address its liabilities in Bhopal.
- Dow has been producing chlorinated chemicals and burning and burying its waste, including chemicals that make up Agent Orange.
- In New Plymouth, 500,000 gallons of Agent Orange were produced and thousands of tons of dioxin-laced waste was dumped in agricultural fields.
- Monsanto is, by far, the largest producer of genetically engineered seeds in the world, dominating 70% to 100% of the market for crops such as soy, cotton, wheat and corn.
- Monsanto is the world’s leading producer of the herbicide glyphosate, marketed as Roundup. Roundup is sold to small farmers as a pesticide, yet harms crops in the long run as the toxins accumulate in the soil.
- Plants exposed to Roundup eventually become infertile, forcing farmers to purchase genetically modified Roundup Ready Seed, a seed that resists the herbicide. This creates a cycle of dependency on Monsanto for both the weed killer and the only seed that can resist it. Both products are patented, and sold at inflated prices.
- Exposure to Roundup is documented to cause cancers, skin disorders, spontaneous abortions, premature births, and damage to the gastrointestinal and nervous systems.
- According to the India Committee of the Netherlands and the International Labor Rights Fund, Monsanto also employs child labor.
- In India, an estimated 12,375 children work in cottonseed production for farmers paid by Indian and multinational seed companies, including Monsanto.
- DynCorp, one of the providers of mercenary services, guarded Afghan statesmen and African oil fields, trained Iraqi police forces, eradicated Colombian coca plants, and protected business interests in hurricane-devastated New Orleans.
- DynCorp’s fumigation of coca crops along the Colombian-Ecuadorian border led Ecuadorian peasants to sue DynCorp.
- In 2001, a mechanic with DynCorp blew the whistle on DynCorp employees in Bosnia for rape and trading girls as young as 12 into sex slavery.
KBR (Kellogg, Brown and Root)
- KBR, a subsidiary of Halliburton Corporation, is notorious for its fraudulent bookkeeping, dishonest billing practices with US taxpayer dollars and no-bid contracts.
- In June 2005, a previously secret Pentagon audit criticized $1.4 billion in “questioned” and “unsupported” expenditures.
- In 2002 the company paid $2 million to settle a Justice Department lawsuit that accused KBR of inflating contract prices at Fort Ord, California.
- Many third-country national (TCN) laborers have been hired by KBR with few protections and uncertain legal status. TCNs often sleep in crowded trailers and wait outside in scorching heat for food rations. Many lack adequate medical care and put in hard labor seven days a week, 10 hours or more a day.
- Nestle, the third largest buyer of cocoa from the Ivory Coast, is well aware of the tragically unjust labor practices taking place on the farms with which it continues to do business.
- Nestle and other chocolate manufacturers agreed to end the use of abusive and forced child labor on cocoa farms by July 1, 2005, but they failed to do so.
- Nestle is notorious for its aggressive marketing of infant formula in poor countries in the 1980s. Because of this practice, Nestle is still one of the most boycotted corporations in the world, and its infant formula is still controversial.
- In Italy in 2005, police seized more than two million liters of Nestle infant formula that was contaminated with the chemical isopropylthioxanthone (ITX).
- Violations of labor rights are reported from Nestle factories in numerous countries. In Colombia, Nestle replaced the entire factory staff with lower-wage workers and did not renew the collective employment contract.
Philip Morris USA and Philip Morris International
- Among tobacco companies, Philip Morris is notorious. Now called Altria, it is the world’s largest and most profitable cigarette corporation that kills millions a year through their deadly products.
- Documents uncovered in a lawsuit filed against the tobacco industry by the state of Minnesota showed that Philip Morris and other leading tobacco corporations knew very well of the dangers of tobacco products and the addictiveness of nicotine.
- Although the company says it doesn’t want kids to smoke, it spends millions of dollars every day marketing and promoting cigarettes to youth.
- Overseas, it has even hired underage “Marlboro girls” to distribute free cigarettes to other children and sponsored concerts where cigarettes were handed out to minors.
- Philip Morris has aggressively moved into ‘developing country’ markets, where smoking and smoking-related deaths are on the rise.
- Preliminary numbers released by the World Health Organization predict global deaths due to smoking-related illnesses will nearly double by 2020, with more than three-quarters of those deaths in the developing world.
- Wal-Mart is the biggest corporation in the world that has wiped out its competition. It owns 5,100 stores worldwide and employs 1.3 million workers in the United States and 400,000 abroad, as well as millions more in the factories of its suppliers.
- Wal-Mart steamrolls its way into every possible town, destroying local supermarkets and countless small businesses.
- Wal-Mart has a long track record of worker abuse, from forced overtime to sex discrimination to illegal child labor to relentless union busting.
- Wal-Mart also notoriously fails to provide health insurance to over half of its employees, who are then left to rely on themselves or taxpayers, who provide for a portion of their healthcare needs through government Medicaid.
- In September 2005, the International Labor Rights Fund filed a lawsuit on behalf of Wal-Mart supplier sweatshop workers in China, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Nicaragua and Swaziland. The workers were denied minimum wages, forced to work overtime without compensation, and were denied legally mandated health care.
- Other worker rights violations that have been found in foreign factories that produce goods for Wal-Mart include locked bathrooms, starvation wages, pregnancy tests, denial of access to health care, and workers being fired and blacklisted if they try to defend their rights.
- The petrochemical company Chevron is guilty of some of the worst environmental and human rights abuses in the world. From 1964 to 1992, Texaco (which transferred operations to Chevron after being bought out in 2001) unleashed a toxic “Rainforest Chernobyl” in Ecuador by leaving over 600 unlined oil pits in pristine northern Amazon rainforests and dumping 18 billion gallons of toxic production water into rivers used for bathing water.
- Local communities have suffered severe health effects, including cancer, skin lesions, birth defects, and spontaneous abortions.
- Chevron is responsible for the violent repression of peaceful opposition to oil extraction. In Nigeria, Chevron has hired private military personnel to open fire on peaceful protestors who oppose oil extraction in the Niger Delta.
- Chevron is responsible for widespread health problems in Richmond, California, where one of Chevron’s largest refineries is located. Processing 350,000 barrels of oil a day, the Richmond refinery produces oil flares and toxic waste in the Richmond area. As a result, local residents suffer from high rates of lupus, skin rashes, rheumatic fever, liver problems, kidney problems, tumors, cancer, asthma, and eye problems.
- Chevron’s Unocal Corporation, in December 2004, settled a lawsuit filed by 15 Burmese villagers, in which the villagers alleged Unocal’s complicity in a range of human rights violations in Burma, including rape, summary execution, torture, forced labor and forced migration.
- Coca-Cola Company leads in the abuse of workers’ rights, assassinations, water privatization, and worker discrimination. Between 1989 and 2002, eight union leaders from Coca-Cola bottling plants in Colombia were killed after protesting the company’s labor practices.
- Hundreds of other Coca-Cola workers who have joined or considered joining the Colombian union SINALTRAINAL have been kidnapped, tortured, and detained by paramilitaries who are hired to intimidate workers to prevent them from unionizing.
- In India, Coca-Cola destroys local agriculture by privatizing the country’s water resources.
- In Plachimada, Kerala, Coca-Cola extracted 1.5 million liters of deep well water, which they bottled and sold under the names Dasani and BonAqua. The groundwater was severely depleted, affecting thousands of communities with water shortages and destroying agricultural activity. As a result, the remaining water became contaminated with high chloride and bacteria levels, leading to scabs, eye problems, and stomach aches in the local population.
- Pfizer is the largest pharmaceutical company in the world; it is also one of the worst abusers of the human right of universal access to HIV/AIDS medicine.
- In addition to Viagra, Zoloft, Zithromax and Norvasc, Pfizer produces the drug fluconazole (an antifungal used by AIDS patients) under the name Diflucan, and sells it at inflated prices most poor people cannot afford.
- The company refuses to grant generic licenses of fluconazole to governments in countries like Brazil, South Africa, or Dominican Republic, where patients are forced to pay $20 per weekly pill, though the average national wage is only $120 per month.
- Pfizer also values shareholder profits over safety standards. In Europe in 2005, it withdrew from scientific studies of a new class of AIDS drugs called CCR5 inhibitors, choosing instead to rush its own untested CCR5 inhibitor onto the European market without full information about the drug’s side effects.
Suez-Lyonnaise Des Eaux
- The privatization of water has had a disastrous impact on the human right to clean water, and the French company Suez is the worst perpetrator of this abuse. The company’s billions of dollars in profit come at the expense of poor people living in countries where thousands lack access to potable water, and, because of private water contracts, are also facing skyrocketing water prices.
- Suez goes by many names around the world–Ondeo, SITA and others–to mask its worldwide net of controversial activities.
- In Manila, Philippines, after seven years of water privatization under a Suez company (Maynilad Water) contract, studies showed that water rates increased in some neighborhoods by 400 to 700 percent. These studies also showed that the negligence of the company resulted in cholera and gastroenteritis outbreaks that killed six people and severely sickened 725 in Manila’s Tondo district.
- In Bolivia, a Suez company (Aguas de Illimani) left 200,000 people without access to water and caused a revolt when it tried to charge between $335 and $445 to connect a private home to the water supply. Countless people were unable to afford this charge in a country whose yearly per capita GDP is $915.
- Credit Suisse has been charged with corporate secrecy mixed with tax evasion and fined $2.88 billion pleading guilty to criminal charges of helping U.S. citizens evade taxes
- Credit Suisse helped 22,000 Americans evade taxes, but the bank did not have to reveal its clients’ names.
- GlaxoSmithKline has been charged and fined for branding and hiding safety information with $3 billion in fines after pleading guilty to misbranding the drugs Paxil and Wellbutrin.
- They were also charged with hiding safety information from the FDS, fraud, rigged prices, false claims, failure to report safety data, and aggressive marketing.
- GlaxoSmithKline targeted physicians to promote the drugs for non-FDA approved uses. Some wonder if the $3 billion fine was punitive enough given the $25 billion in sales from the respective drugs.
- Goldman Sachs has been charged with representing toxic securities to investors.
- They were charged $5 billion in fines for misleading investors about residential mortgage-backed securities.
- Goldman Sachs was held culpable for its role in helping ignite the 2008 Global Financial Crisis.
- Anadarko Petroleum was charged with passing the buck on major environmental crimes with $5.15 billion in fines for trying to avoid paying for environmental contamination.
- In 2014, Citigroup settled with federal and state agencies for $7 billion for its role in the 2008 financial crisis for knowing the mortgages it had sold were bad while representing the securitized mortgages as good investments.
- BNP Paribas has been charged with flouting US economic sanctions and made to pay $8.9 billion in fines.
- In 2014, BNP Paribas, pleaded guilty to illegally processing transactions from 2004-2012 through the U.S. financial system from countries that were under U.S. economic sanctions such as Sudan, Iran, and Cuba.
- In 2013, JPMorgan was charged for its role in causing the 2008 financial crisis.
- The company agreed to pay $13 billion, which at the time was the largest U.S. corporate settlement in history.
- Volkswagen got caught cheating on emissions tests and deceiving its customers.
- In June 2016, the German automaker agreed to a $14.7 billion settlement with the U.S. government.
Bank of America
- In 2014, Bank of America paid out the largest settlement in history (at the time) for financial fraud leading up to and during the mortgage crisis of 2008.
- The U.S. government concluded that Bank of America helped exacerbate the financial crisis by engaging in unlawful conduct.
- Bank of America lied to investors about the quality of its residential mortgage-backed securities, but it also was responsible for the origination and underwriting of many of the bad mortgages in the first place.
- In 2016, British Petroleum was found guilty of criminal manslaughter and environmental crimesand ordered to pay $20.8 billion — the largest fine ever levied by the Department of Justice.
- BP was found to be “grossly negligent” and the story of the disaster reveals a fatally flawed well design, faulty emergency equipment, inadequate safety precautions and an emergency contingency plan rife with errors and miscalculations.
- BP pleaded guilty to eleven counts of manslaughter for the eleven crew members who died.
- Following the disaster, BP played down the severityof the spill, and even lied to Congress about how much oil was leaking leading to a guilty plea of obstruction of justice.
- BP faced a $525 million fine from the SEC for hiding information from investors.
HOW TO STOP CORPORATE CORRUPTION
Corporations make a tremendous amount of money by scamming us, screwing us, stealing from us, killing us, poisoning us, destroying our environment or some other crime that one way or another a “working democracy” would stop immediately. Corporations use a portion of the money they are accumulating from not paying taxes to pay off legislators, regulators, inspectors — Senior Executive Service members — to keep them from stopping the corporation from what they are doing that is illegal or unethical.
Corporations, through lobbyists, pay off others in the government to stop the rest of the government from doing anything about the corruption as they all avert their eyes from the scene of the crime.
Meanwhile, corporations spend a bit more of that tax-free money on marketing, propaganda, PR, and subliminal programming to make us look the other way and not notice the crimes. And so the cycle continues as corporate dynasties of monarchs rule from economic fortresses, often hiding behind government agencies. As We the People become poorer, corporations grow richer. As the cycle continues and strengthens each year, corporations become more ensconced in their power and the corrupt streams that reach into our government, at all levels.
Corporations get rich from corruption, bribery, buying elections, buying legislators, purchasing government subsidies, tax breaks, handouts and bailouts while they are protected by many layers of courts, judges, and lawyers.
All we really have to do to beat this vicious cycle of corporate corruption is remember that the first three words of the U. S. Constitution are “We the People.” We the People have unalienable rights in America, not corporations. We the People have U. S. Constitutional rights, not corporations. We the People own America and its resources, not corporations. We the People elect those who make the laws, not corporations.
After fighting a revolution to end exploitation by the British monarchy, the church, and corporations, our country’s founders retained a healthy fear of corporate power and wisely limited corporations exclusively to a business role. Corporations were forbidden from attempting to influence elections, public policy, and other realms of civic society.
Initially, the privilege of incorporation was granted selectively to enable activities that benefited the public, such as construction of roads or canals. Enabling shareholders to profit was seen as a means to that end.
In our current situation, America simply needs to go back to the original foundations of corporate structure that kept corporations from acting like sovereign monarchs and were kept in check by state legislatures, not the current federal systems that are supported by “superior” federal courts. A better ‘checks and balance system’ on corporations would produce a tremendous amount of taxes that are now flowing out of America at a rate that is staggering. Some say over 50% of America’s wealth leaves each year through off-shore corporations and their tax-havens.
Corporations want the rights of a “person” without any of the responsibilities. This simply must end. Corporations act as criminals far below the nature of a “person” and thus have shown the world their true nature; an immoral nature that acts with impunity, lawlessness, and with a superiority (royalty) that is “above a person” when, in fact, corporation are “less than a person.”
The “old rules” for corporations will work quite well as a new standard by which all American corporations must abide. Foreign corporation will have to abide by the same rules and make sure to pay taxes and be held responsible for all applicable laws.
THE RENEWED CORPORATE RULES OF AMERICA
- Corporate charters (licenses to exist) are granted for a limited time by an American agency and can be revoked promptly for violating laws.
- Corporations may engage only in activities necessary to fulfill their chartered purpose.
- Corporations may not own stock in other corporations nor own any property that is not essential to fulfilling their chartered purpose.
- Corporations are terminated if they exceed their authority or cause public harm.
- Owners and managers are responsible for criminal acts committed on the job.
- Corporations may not make any political or charitable contributions nor spend money to influence law-making.
SUGGESTIONS TO END CORPORATE FASCISM
The Anonymous Patriots always like to point in the direction of positive change, even in the face of evil that begs to be destroyed. We believe that change can happen overnight once the force of consciousness reaches critical mass on a particular issue. Corporate corruption exists because of corrupt laws, lawyers, judges, and courts (Fake Justice) that make it perfectly legal for corporations to be immune from most types of prosecution – they are above the law like nobility and the clergy.
WE THE PEOPLE CAN CHANGE THE TWISTED LAWS BACK TO THE WAY THEY WERE WHEN CORPORATIONS IN AMERICA WERE CONTROLLED BY AMERICANS, INSTEAD OF THE OTHER WAY ROUND.
We offer the suggestions below as a beginning to correct the problem and put Justice back into the American system of law. We the People will then become the sovereign that we are, and our unalienable rights will not be shared with international corporations that demand to have higher rights granted by some false privilege or unfounded claim.
- We can stop corporations from corrupting us with the money that our laws allow corporations to accumulate tax-free by simply taxing appropriately and not allowing off-shore tax havens. Corporations must pay their fair share of taxes.
- We can end corporate lobbying completely and stop all influence peddling for money in all areas of the government. When you stop the flow of money to politicians, laws will not be geared to corporate interests and will return to We the People.
- We can stop corporate Fake News and main stream media propaganda that is simply yellow journalism for corporate interests. Reuters and the Associated Press can be closed down for indecency in broadcastings, false reporting, fake news, and political manipulation.
- We can end corporate impunity in the courts by stopped the Supreme Court’s recognition of a corporation as a “person” and restructure state and federal courts to limit federal courts to the single jurisdiction of Washington D. C., the only place they have authority.
- We can end all corporate donations to elections and end corporate tax-free donations altogether.
- We can close international loopholes for transnational corporations that allow them to evade taxes in America.
- We can limit U. S. governmental contracts to American corporations only.
- We can stop U. S. funds from being given to foreign corporations which dry up the USAID and OPIC programs.
- We can prosecute Serco and the Crown Agents for their economics crimes, fraud, and theft.
- We can write new legislation limiting the power of corporations (especially banks and brokers) and make them responsible for the same laws that all America’s are held to along with the punishments associated with those crimes.
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