STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Abolish Corporations
By Daily Bell Staff - November 29, 2016

Don’t Lower Corporate Taxes. Abolish Them … Lowering the corporate tax rate appears to be all the rage. Donald Trump has promised a cut to 15 percent from 35 percent in the U.S., and British Prime Minister Theresa May has pledged to make the U.K.’s corporate tax the lowest in the G-20, which would mean taking it lower than Trump intends to … Now that business-friendly governments appear to have some leeway, they should go back to the old idea of eliminating corporate levies and just taxing personal income and consumption. – Bloomberg

Bloomberg is suggesting in this article that corporate taxes should be abolished because corporations will make more money and that in turn will benefit their workers and society generally.

But what the West’s newly “populist” governments ought to do is abolish the regulatory and judicial decisions that create such gargantuan and abusive entities in the first place.

The efficacy and necessity of corporations is a fundamental elite meme. Capitalism naturally gives rise to corporate power, or so we are told. When corporations behave badly, that is a “market failure.” This is one reason we need equally big governments.

But even a cursory look at history – especially US history,  as the US began without corporate might – gives us a clear insight into how corporations evolved within the context of modern technocracy.

Without a series of judicially enforced decisions, corporations likely would not exist, certainly not as they are.

Once jettisoned, true prosperity could begin to rise up and wealth would gradually be redistributed more equitably. Technological and medical breakthroughs would be available, not repressed. People’s lives would once more revolve around culture, family and real achievement instead of big government and even bigger businesses.

More:

“The corporate tax is justified as a means to control the excessive accumulation of power in the hands o corporate management, which is inconsistent with a properly functioning liberal democratic polity,” Reuven Avi-Yonah of the University of Michigan Law School wrote in a 2004 paper defending the tax.

“People understand that corporations are powerful and that the corporate tax is one way in which the state, as representative of the people, can limit their power.”

… There are other ways governments can keep corporations in check — for example, through environmental, safety and labor regulations, which U.S. Republicans and Brexiters dislike but which ultimately benefit consumers in a way the corporate tax doesn’t.

The above provides some fairly lamentable logic. Corporations don’t need to be taxed in order to be controlled. They don’t need to be restrained by environmental and safety regulations.

They need to be subject to marketplace competition. And they are not.

Shrink the power of corporations in three ways.

  • Get rid of “corporate personhood.
  • Get rid of intellectual property rights.
  • Get rid of central banking.

Also, reduce ridiculous regulatory structures that further retard competition and entrepreneurship.

Strip away legal “decisions” that have built the West into a neo-fascist environment dominated by a handful of vast governments and even bigger businesses.

Why should Apple dominate the telephone market and ruin the lives of workers exploited amidst relentless working conditions in horrible Asian factories?

Why should Facebook and Google – both initially funded by the CIA and probably still controlled by American intel agencies – dominate the Internet?

Why should Facebook in particular somehow have grown into the world’s dominant, Western editorial force? Because Zuckerberg is a fabulously literate and accomplished writer?

No, these corporations are representative of exactly what Thomas Jefferson and other American founders feared when they refused to give fed gov power over corporations and instead parceled out authority to the states.

Until the Civil War, corporations in the US were almost non-existent. Entrepreneurship was at a high, people worked individually or in partnerships (often in agriculture) and the competitive marketplace was a determinant factor in people’s lives rather than the current, monstrous federal government.

Jefferson and the others feared such entities as the British East India Tea Company that ripped apart India and grew so powerful it fielded its own army.

You can see some other articles on the corporate “meme” here, here and here.

It certainly is a meme, this idea that only a handful of individuals ought to manage the world’s industrial might. Additionally, we’re sure the bios of these individuals are exaggerated far beyond reality. Such technocrats are always geniuses, supposedly so …

The current corporate environment is not conducive to freedom but to the further growth of the fascist/technocratic model favored by a handful of banking families dedicated to building globalism.

Conclusion: Bloomberg gets some 0f it right: Corporations are indeed too powerful. But reducing their taxes isn’t the answer. Get rid of the judicial and government decisions that unfairly prop them up and allow a measure of real competition and entrepreneurship to return to Western markets.

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  • Earn nest

    I saw a thinly veiled threat to remove Trump from Twitter today. Insinuating the power of the technocrats to do so. I also well remember back in college in the late 70’s being presented with the question of big corporations v. big government as if those were the only two choices. The fact remains that control of the discourse they’ve lost and will never regain in the foreseeable future.

  • disqus_QZX8ENhLyb

    It is most apparent to me that corporations ARE CREATURES OF GOVERNMENT. Corporations could not exist unless government has passed special statutes that legally shield the officers of corporations from normal responsibility for their actions.

    “The corporation” answers for the actions of “the corporation”. The officers who make “corporate decisions” and take “corporate actions” are not individually responsible for those decisions and actions.

    Corporations SHOULD BE ABOLISHED, PERIOD. There is no need for them in a just society.

    All Technical and legal responsibilities should reside in the PERSONs of the actors who make the decisions and take the actions. The rules of Sole Proprietorship and Partnership should apply with no governmentally-mandated shields for corporate thugs, banksters, and their henchmen, our political masters.

    The Government of the USA is just HUGE corporation that can’t be sued unless it decides to let you sue it.

    Corporations are creatures solely of government. Abolish corporations . In fact, abolish COLectivist COercive EXternally-IMposed GOVernments.

    Whatever happened to “Consent of the Governed?” We “governed” no longer have any say whatsoever. The Declaration of Independence has been thrown in the trash bin of freedom.

    I want to secede, nullify, opt-out of all “legislation” that is not in the best interest of EVERY citizen-subject of this nation-state.

    Reject collectivism! Embrace Individualism!

    • If people want to invest in corporations (stripped of state protection) and have the opportunity, they ought to be allowed to. Very few would, likely, depending on the corporate stipulations …

    • autonomous

      You should have quit after your first statement, “corporations ARE CREATURES OF GOVERNMENT.” It’s not corporations that should be be banned, it’s government that should be banned. Corporations would either thrive or die in a free market, which cannot exist under a government. Only a free people can have a free market.

      • jackw97224

        I don’t mind others choosing to be told what to do but I certainly am disgusted and harmed when people vote to sanction politicians to use violence to force me an others to obey their dictates. Organizational government based on voluntary contracts appeals to me. But most people are so indoctrinated, propagandized and brainwashed by government controlled education and manipulated media that I don’t expect any epiphany of the ignorant and dishonest voters in my few remaining years on this planet.

    • Gary

      Great post. Corporations were only created to shield “the officers of corporations from normal responsibility for their actions”.

  • davidnrobyn

    A free-thinking friend of mine about 25 years ago startled me with some observations and conclusions he’d reached. One was that the corporation should go. All businesses should revert to partnerships and sole proprietorships, which are the natural, market-created entities. His reasoning? Corporations allow individuals (who are the moral agents) to evade accountability.

    • davidnrobyn

      I might add (and will! :-)) that we have the same problem with unelected bureaucrats–evasion of accountability and the resulting tyranny.

      • Gary

        Because the government is a corporation.

    • jackw97224

      For me to take a risk I need to know the extreme downside and how that would be handled. If the company had insurance to cover the worst case scenario then of course I would consider it and of course pay a premium to that offered by companies with less protection. If I’m a gambler, then of course I would opt for lots of things that offer extreme payoffs and the chance of losing all my investment as well.

  • Han Solo

    Its obvious, that corporations are not something that is needed in a REALLY free market.

    FA Hayek wrote in “Road to Serfdom” and predicted nearly 100 years ago that markets would become dominated by large corporations the bigger that government became. The bigger the govt the more large corps and the fewer small businesses. He explains why central planning leads to this sort of market, and he did it before hardly any corporations even existed.

    The problem is that big government loves big corporations. Big government is all about controlling the economy, controlling the people, and controlling the means of production. The central planners and socialists love corporations. In this market, with a few big corporations they only have to arm twist, make back-room deals with them, enact special regulations that the corporations are in favor of because in addition to costing them some efficiency, they also create large barriers to entry in the market which they are very much in favor of, etc.. to achieve their central planning and control. If the market was made up of many smaller independent businesses it would be almost impossible for them to exert so much control over the marketplace.

    Central planning of the economy would not work if the market was full of many small businesses run by individuals. They can’t control that, too many mom and pops would tell the socialist planners to just fck off.

    The next time you hear a politician complaining about “big x”, “corporate greed”, or “powerful x”….remember….they are lying through their teeth. They need big corporations and markets centralized into a small number of massive entities, more than anyone else in order to achieve their political visions of central planning.

    In a REALLY free market, without government interference, then corporations would not exist. In fact without government interference in the free market, corporations CANNOT exist.

    ***Corporations by their very existence is massive government interference in the free market.***

    Many libertarians believe that corporations should be eliminate. Without all the special rights and privileges given to corporations, business would be far less likely to do things without fear of getting caught. Imagine if real people would be on the line for their own money, and be personally responsible for the actions of their business just like the way that sole proprietors are, and not some nameless, faceless corporate person-hood.

    Given that the us founders hated corporations and there were many laws against them for a long time. We should go back to that.

    Remember: The corporation is given all it’s special power and privileges by the government. Whenever you hear any politicians complain about “big business” they are full of shit. Big government loves big business. They are easy to control and easy to use for centrally planning the economy, compared to a marketplace with many smaller businesses in it.

    It’s not libertarians who are pro-corporations, it’s really the central planners and statists.

  • dsaulw

    Hear hear! I wholeheartedly agree with the thought process presented here.

    However, in order to overcome medical tyranny (and perhaps certain other brands of tyranny) it is also of paramount importance that the whole slate of licensing laws are eliminated too: licensing of healers, hospitals, therapeutics, medical schools, etc. These lay the foundation for the monopoly medical system that we have today.

    And, of course, the government medical programs which funnel money to corporations (e.g. Medicare and Medicaid, the vaccine program) are in fact Corporate Welfare programs disguised as programs to assist the aged, poor, and others.

    • jackw97224

      Freedom of choice is important. I dare say one would not seek a license if government did not use violence to compel such. It would be easy to contract with an insurance company to buy protection and then it could set the conditions for operation.

    • LICENSING
      https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/153b1a73774522855514dd60581159882125c4f6fd93f1d31b570d74990383b2.jpg
      When government takes away
      Your Right to do something,
      and then sells it back to you…

      • dsaulw

        Yes, though I would say that it only sells it back to you with restrictions … you can only, for example, practice medicine in the way that the government approves of.

  • BR549

    I was under the understanding that corporations formerly had to prove their benefit to society in order to get their corporation status. It was supposedly J.D. Rockefeller who broke the back of that restriction.

  • MetaCynic

    Is it corporate personhood or is it it the the vast government regulatory apparatus which gives corporations such power to abuse? My understanding of the former is that it limits a corporation’s financial liability to only its own assets and not to that of its shareholders and officers. However shareholders (who are the real owners) can also take a hit to the market value of their shares if a corporation is sued for misbehavior. In that case the owners are held financially liable – if indirectly – by the market. Does corporate personhood immunize corporate officers against criminal charges in the carrying out of their duties similarly to the immunity enjoyed by government employees?

  • ICFubar

    Well said! When corporations first appeared there was no limit on the risk to owners of corporations, or no law allowing limited liability of a company (LLC or Ltd) Now saying a return to this state would bode well for society is to ignore the massive control and influence corporations wield on all levels today. When 147 corporations, largely bank holding corporations, control 40% of all trade internationally and receive 60% of all revenues world wide and with their ability to dominate other less connected corporations we can plainly see that this phase, often called climax capitalism, is not good for any society or the health of the planet. How to achieve a rolling back of this power to control and dominate life in total on this planet is a question that begs an answer. The structural core is the money creation business held by a private for profit cartel that uses this omnipotent power to further their own interests and agendas that we all bemoan and see being played out everyday through all levels of the human experience. I call these bankers the Apex Elites and believe the statement by Henry Kissinger that reads “Control money and you control the world.” to be an axiomatic truth. And it may have been Jefferson who said “The omnipotent power to create money should be taken from the bankers and returned to the people to whom this power rightfully belongs.” When the world economy again collapses under the debt created and orchestrated by bankers, as they ready to shift to their next designed paradigm, that will be the time not to lose our heads when all about us are, but to strike hard with an alternative to the idea money has to be created as debt all owed to an inter-generational aristocratic and growingly perverse banking class.

    • concerndcitizen

      I think we are referring to “double liability” for shareholders, officers and directors. That will solve most of the excessive risk. It will not solve the concentration problem that naturally occurs within all industries. Eliminating excess regulation (most regulations) will solve this. Of course, the ultimate solution is for everyone to have good moral character and naturally look out for the other person. Maybe if we have a brighter future, this will be possible.

  • Jon_Roland

    What nonsense! It is not the form, the corporation, that is the problem. It is the size and lack of competition. Yes, governments are also corporations. But laws do not protect corporate officers from accountability. Corporate officers are successfully prosecuted all the time. It is the members or shareholders that are protected. Just as members of society are not held accountable for the actions of government officials, although they may suffer the consequences of failing to hold them accountable.

    Large sole proprietorships and partnerships can be just as abusive as large corporations.

    Part of the problem is the decline of the use of grand juries to inspect and indict officials of large enterprises. They used to be able to do that. If you want accountability, revive proper grand juries, and not as mere rubber stamps for prosecutors.

    My organization, the Constitution Society, is an unincorporated non profit association. So are political parties, labor unions, large churches, many universities. and many trade organizations. Could any of those become abusive? Of course. The solution is scrutiny by randomly selected outsiders.

    • jackw97224

      What is your take on Lysander Spooner’s No Treason No. 6, The Constitution of No Authority? Also, what are your thoughts on the successes Marc Stevens et.al. are having (see YouTube)? They confront judges and prosecutors and IRS agents and politicians with the simple question: “What factual evidence do you have that the constitution and law apply to me just because I am physically present in some geographical location, like Wyoming?”

      • Jon_Roland

        Spooner wrote some good things on juries, but he did not really understand laws or one kind of law, a constitution. By his line of reasoning no one would be subject to, say laws against murder, unless they consented to them, presumably in writing. No, laws continue in force until repealed or amended, unless found unconstitutional by a court of competent jurisdiction.
        The “successes” of Marc Stevens are illusory, perhaps the results of confronting people with a poor knowledge of the law.
        The authority of law for people on a territory comes from the ancient principle of law that the sovereign make law for those within its domain, and for the U.S. the sovereign is the people in their capacity as (indirect) ratifiers of the Constitution and amendments thereto.
        However, territorial jurisdiction is not the same as personal or subject matter jurisdiction, all three of which have to be proved.
        The IRS doesn’t enforce true “laws”, only the whims of agents. It lacks subject matter but not territorial jurisdiction (within the U.S.). Those who try to make a territorial argument are taking the wrong approach (not that a different approach would work in corrupt courts).

        • jackw97224

          Thanks for taking the time. Some interesting stuff. Are you saying that judges and prosecuting attorneys who dismiss tickets when confronted with the “Stevens” question are “poor in knowledge of the law? I think the point is that no man or group has any right to tell another person how to live; i.e. none are so much more decent, honest, righteous than others and not anointed with some gift of power. Politics is violence as Tolstoy wrote in The Law of Love and The Law of Violence. The Bible has the 10 Commandments but when man gets to expanding on them, then he goes down the rabbit hole to Satan’s den. The road to hell is paved with good intentions…someone said but I can’t recall his name. Spooner does not make the mistake of assuming that people can assume authority over others who do not share the same beliefs. But Spooner does not deny basic 10 Commandments and certainly would approve of one’s defense of his person or property if he were attacked, i.e. he opposes aggression and of course that is what a constitution and law do; it is man made rules for sanctioning aggression. The mistake most people make is assuming that others can dictate the rules. As Thomas Sowell said: “The most basic question is not what is best, but who shall decide what is best.”

          • Jon_Roland

            Or they may not want to take the court time to collect a fine that will not pay for it. Traffic Court is largely about profit, not justice.

          • jackw97224

            Yes indeed. Court is just a loot A to satisfy B scam (thank you H.L. Mencken quote)

  • LawrenceNeal

    Who is going to abolish corporations? The government? The people that own the corporations also own the so-called ‘government’. ‘Government’ is an illusory construct of the ,001% Elite, used to quell restlessness of the population by making them think they have a voice. They do not.

  • wraft

    The problem seems to be a Supreme Court decision in the 1880s that corporations, which are juristic persons, were entitled to the same rights as natural persons.

    Corporations enjoy limited liability, which protects stockholders from being sued for the actions of a corporation. This is a valuable privilege, which ought to be taxable by the charter grantor, usually a state government.

    What would be ideal is if corporations were the only entities subject to taxation.

  • rmp

    Forget income taxes. Sales, excise and corporate should be the only taxes.

  • apberusdisvet

    Better to abolish central government and rescind all regulations and tax loopholes that are favorable to only “certain” corporations that maintain huge number of lobbyists buying favor with the 535 corruptocrats. Let the playing field be level and leave regulations to the states. If setting up a business is too onerous in one state, then move to another. Seems like many Cali companies have fled to Texas. The solution is this freedom of movement which would not be possible with an over reaching Federal Government. CORPORATIONS PER SE ARE NOT THE PROBLEM.

  • jacob

    Abolish corporations? Sure, but who’s gonna do it? You? Abolish governments? Who does that heavy lifting? You? I don’t think so, and neither do you. During the Bush the Idiot administration, scoundrel Karl Rove nailed it in an interview. He said that while the chattering classes (I guess that would be us) are moaning and groaning about what governments and institutions are doing, those running things are busy moving on to their next thing.

    Opposing oppressive governments and institutions seems like a fool’s errand that makes people weak and powerless. Trying to change what is already established indirectly strengthens the entities being opposed by ratifying their existence. They have the resources to defend themselves and, when necessary, they morph out of sight or out of reach.

    What governments and institutions can’t easily defeat, however, is mass secession, first in thought and then in deed. In the US Civil War [more accurately the War of Northern Aggression against the Southern States], the South lost because their disorganized leaders failed Sun Tzu’s test to know their enemy and know themselves. They failed to take advantage of the size of their territory. The North never could have overcome massive guerrilla warfare. The Union army didn’t have the manpower to take out every cracker stalking them and hiding behind every tree. Field of battle warfare was their undoing. And they should have focused less on killing Union soldiers and more on killing Northern political leaders. They didn’t play for keeps.

    Achieving secession is akin to stopping predatory husbands who chase after and sometimes kill their wives who run away. The collective hive mind set needs to be addressed. Fighting the evil queen and her drones in the hive always fails. Successfully escaping the hive and leaving it to founder behind is something else.

    The Declaration of Independence was a blueprint. Putting it into action and escaping the hive, well, that’s where the men got separated from the boys. The hive’s noose keeps tightening, but the power lusting elite can’t defeat mass defection. Successful secession requires consciousness raising, good tactics, and a highly inspiring alternative reality. Without stepping up to the plate it will remain a utopian dream.

    • rahrog

      Wonderful comment!

      Instead of trying to fix a corrupt, tyrannical, murderous government, and it’s neo-fascist partners in crime at the central bank, and an ungodly number of mega-corporations protected by the murderous government – DECLARE INDEPENDENCE!!! SECEDE…SECEDE…SECEDE!!!

      America was created by SECESSION. The time to start the next American Revolution is NOW.

      Those who wish to remain in the current system can have it good, long, and hard.

      • jacob

        One must be sure not to trivialize the magnitude of the undertaking that is secession. Slaves who try to secede from government are stopped until they can no longer be stopped. Secession is opposed because of the cost of lost slaves and because of its contagion amongst the slaves. It is a difficult (and sometimes inadvisable) process that begins when it first appears as a desirable alternative in the public’s mind. The more the public embraces it, the less spilled blood. Attempts to secede before sufficient public acceptance are a recipe for disaster. Succession happens when changes that have already been underway in society complete themselves. Much teaching is needed about secession, its huge costs and its sometimes meager benefits.

        • Bruce C.

          I agree that a “critical mass” of people must be on the same page about “secession.” That is why I think the election of Trump is so important and useful in that regard. The stage is clearly set now: If Trump is unable OR unwilling to make many of the changes that he has promised then a large number of people (enough people) will finally see for themselves that the current Republic cannot be changed or saved politically from within. If that becomes the case then either a physical revolution from “outside” must occur or the existing system will be abandoned (“succession”) so it dies by attrition.

        • rahrog

          There is nothing trivial about freedom, or the secession movement, or those of us who have spent decades studying the concept.

          The benefits of seceding from the federal government of USA vary depending on which state(s) secede.

          The Texas Nationalist Movement has run these numbers repeatedly;

          Their is NO benefit in staying under the current government.

          The economic numbers alone clearly indicate a higher standard of living for people who escape from the almighty dollar and the tyrannical government that fronts for the corrupt banking system.

          There is no sense in debating civil liberties because civil liberties are dead in the USA.

          SECEDE…SECEDE…SECEDE!!!

  • georgesilver

    Just make everyone, including corporations, subject to common law. This would make the senior people in corporations personally responsible for their actions.
    At the moment the ‘corporations’ can sue you as individual because you are also regarded as a ‘corporation’ or “vessel of the sea” (maritime law). Under common law if the head of a corporation then harmed you physically or financially you could then claim compensation from that ‘corporation’ individual.
    That would soon stop the corporations from running over everyone and every country.

  • thefinancedude

    corporations are roman inventions ie ancient – look up fictions of law in bouvier’s dictionary b/c the romans knew it was absurd re: fictions in/at the law – so at the same exact time, they invented equity (they announced corporate personhood so loudly re supreme court level b/c they are TRYING TO WAKE THE SLUMBERING GIANTs b/c guess what its been this way since time memorial – its not new! – “man” is ignorant)

    man needs to wise up collectively and pierce the corporate veil – not kill our creations…

    compare the incorporated american towns/counties/cities vs unincorporated…choice is the universal prime condition/prescription – services are much better in/at incorporated venues vs not…

    consent is the whole of the law…

  • Rich

    Take this idea all the way. A US manufacturer wants to ship product to overseas markets, or back to the US market. They provide their own security on the high seas. It is not the financial burden of the citizens of the US to provide them a Navy. The military in this country is for defense of the country, not a handful of investors in manufacturing.
    It should go without saying, the use of eminent domain for hotels, casinos, pipelines and ball parks is a complete and total misuse and benefits a very few only.
    The historical nature of government – corporate collusion goes way back as mentioned by at least one other poster. The coast to coast railroads in this country are a good example. Land, taken from the natives, given to railroad men in about a 20 mile wide swath from coast to coast. Use a couple hundred feet of the swath for the tracks and sell off the rest for settlement. Which is how the railroads paid for the line and profited too. A handful of people selected by government to become railroad barons, it is disgusting.

  • alohajim

    Great idea and great comments! Can only add a big picture view for what it’s worth : The issue is not corporations per se, their size or power or the insane laws crafted to absolve the humans within the corporation of any liability. Nor is the issue governments, large or small. it’s the folks who OWN the corporations and CONTROL the governments. Banking families.

    One can think of corporations as the banker’s ‘business’ arm, governments as their ‘legal & enforcement’ arm and media/ academia and the entertainment industries as their ‘propaganda’ arm. Their banking industry, the ‘enslave all humans and buy (steal) all the worlds assets’ arm is actually what makes everything else possible.

    What’s frightening are all the entirely ‘fake’ jobs that millions of humans work at in corporations, governments, and those entirely fake industries bankers created for fun and profit like ‘insurance’, ‘leasing’ & ‘finance’. If you work and do not work to produce either a product or a service that someone will buy, your job is fake and surely will vanish when bankers can no longer create currencies from nothing.

    Target and strike the root so that people can understand the real source of the world’s malaise to have any possibility of effecting a change. Corporations and governments, tools of bankers tyranny, enslavement, and theft, are mere symptoms of the problem.

  • sukTHEfac

    “get rid” of IP rights? I think you meant to say weaken them.

    To get rid of IP rights is to disincentivise the creation of something new. Why would I bother to invent something that could legally be ripped off and profted off of by someone else the very next day? Should we not be praising Graham Bell or Thomas Edison? Were those not their creations in which they deserve to be compensated.

    Much of IP law goes too far to protect the creators, especially in big pharma…but again, to get rid of it? That’s insane!

    Agree with the general theme though, wholeheartedly.

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