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This blog is the work of an educated civilian, not of an expert in the fields discussed.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Perspective Please

And Also: Fall begins.

The NYT puts forth a reasonable approach for corporate personhood, one that rejects the simplistic stance of some that rails against the (fictional) case of corporate persons being treated the same as natural persons (you and me):
That does not mean that corporations should have no rights. It is in society’s interest that they are allowed to speak about their products and policies and that they are able to go to court when another company steals their patents. It makes sense that they can be sued, as a person would be, when they pollute or violate labor laws.

This, as it notes, does not mean corporations can be free of various regulations that provide them with only limited personhood rights. [I probably disagree with how much the editors there want to limit them in this context.] I provide more in the comments to this post, which discusses an article on something Justice Sotomayor said during oral argument with some more links provided. Again, there seems to be some confusion here and a fair middle ground.

The ACORN controversy is the subject of a radio show that can be found here. The video provided does make the two representatives look a bit stupid -- it looks like almost a parody. The half-assed way this has been reported however starts you on the road to proper perspective. For instance, as to the tax advice for prostitutes provided ... your average tax attorney can tell you stories about advice on how to get around tax laws, including as applied to illegal businesses. Any number of banks (e.g., predatory lending), contractors, police departments, etc. also have questionable practices, including advice on how to get around the law.

[Update: H/t GG, the defund ACORN bill has problems ... optimists might say it has a broad reach, but that's probably not intentional or how it will be used. Also, it might have constitutional problems. Kneejerk rush jobs tend to be trouble.]

As with concern for corporations, again, perspective is a wonderful thing.*


* The same can be said when discussing taxation on certain foods. And, here's an interesting piece on Drop Dead Diva.