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Applying the 14th amendment to business corporations meant that they were given legal personhood. This is problematic as corporations have gone on to gain more rights and privileges than human citizens have gained. This makes it difficult to make corporations accountable and act responsibly.
As Eisenhower famously mentioned, the existence of Military-Industrial complex is undeniable. This means that public policy, especially the decision to go to war, is dictated by corporate interests. It is a well known fact that companies allied to the energy industry (Halliburton, Chevron-Texaco, etc) and weapons industry (Lockheed-martin, Boeing, etc) greatly benefited from American invasion of Iraq in 2003.
The purpose of any business corporation is to make regular profits. But sadly, this single-minded objective often leads to the neglect of the environment and other external costs – (both social and economic).
An externality is the consequence of a business transaction that affects parties directly involved in the transaction. For example, in the case of the automobile industry, while the purchaser of a car and its seller both benefit from the economic transaction, the general public suffers due to pollution caused by cars. This is a negative externality for which automobile companies are not brought to account.
The era of globalization has seen a rapid increase in the rate of migration across the world. Usually migrants flee their native country (usually in the Third World) and seek better economic opportunity in North America and Europe. But exploiting Third World workers by paying sub-standard wages has accelerated the process of migration.
One of the negative externalities of corporations is the damage they cause to the environment. In mass produced products, there is plenty of use of harmful chemicals, which when dumped into the ocean without being treated, can cause grave harm to the ecosystem and all living beings. This perhaps explains the increase in incidents of cancer among human beings. It also explains why so many species are pushed to the brink of extinction in recent decades.
Extensive logging of trees in rain forests (in South East Asian countries and Brazilian Amazon forests) have altered the balance of global ecology. This has led to several negative consequences.
Since a corporation exhibits all the characteristics normally associated with a psychotic patient – destructive behavior, lack of remorse, no insight of its own flaws, etc – the comparison is apt.
There are many similarities between plantation system of slavery (also called chattel slavery) and corporate slavery. Both treat human beings are units of production and strip them of their humanity. Both systems place the economic profit-making over social justice.
The moral standpoint of corporations are so low that even unethical practices as spying on competitors’ companies and employees is a regular affair. Sometimes, espionage is applied by management on its own workers, which has a coercive effect on employee thought and behavior.
Critical thinking greatly helps in not falling prey to corporate sales tactics. It makes one look beyond the facade of comforting illusions and look at corporations as mere profit-seeking enterprises with little concern for the greater common good.
While companies like Enron and Hewlett Packard were caught indulging in unethical practices, they are just the tip of the iceberg. Many more companies get away with dishonesty and fraud. When competition is fierce, those companies that try to comply by an ethical code often underperform. Hence, they too join the chorus and contribute to a corporate culture that is a product of mistrust, false claims and poor governance. Hence the ‘few bad apples’ theory doesn’t generally hold true.
Applying the 14th amendment to business corporations meant that they were given legal personhood. This is problematic as corporations have gone on to gain more rights and privileges than human citizens have gained. This makes it difficult to make corporations accountable and act responsibly.
As Eisenhower famously mentioned, the existence of Military-Industrial complex is undeniable. This means that public policy, especially the decision to go to war, is dictated by corporate interests. It is a well known fact that companies allied to the energy industry (Halliburton, Chevron-Texaco, etc) and weapons industry (Lockheed-martin, Boeing, etc) greatly benefited from American invasion of Iraq in 2003.
The purpose of any business corporation is to make regular profits. But sadly, this single-minded objective often leads to the neglect of the environment and other external costs – (both social and economic).
An externality is the .

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