The Corporation was based on a book written by Joel Bakan. It is a documentary film that looks at the history of corporation and follows them up until present day to illustrate their dominance in society. I found this film very interesting with me once being part of the corporate world and finding my way onto another career path for many of the reasons illustrated in this film.
This film had an underlying statement of corporations’ number one concern was profit and the producing more and more per every man hour. It started off in history stating that business was once strictly regulated. Corporations were chartered for specific jobs. These contracts would list the people that were going to do the work, how the work was going to be completed and with what money. These corporations could also only have one job at a time. They could not monopolize and have a large work force that had jobs all over. These corporations were to serve the public and were trusted.
However, with the Civil War and the Industrial Revolution there was growth of corporations. Corporate lawyers did not want these restrictions on the corporations any longer. They wanted the restrictions removed so the corporations would have more power. They found a loophole to use in order to do so. The 14th Amendment to the Constitution was intended for blacks that were newly freed slaves. The amendment was to ensure them that they were going to be treated equally and have due process of law. It was to make sure the Civil Rights Act stayed in effect. The corporation stated they were made of people therefore should be treated as a person. They took it to court that they as a corporation were also protected and gained rights under this amendment. From 1890-1910 there were 307 cases brought to court on the issue of the 14th Amendment and of them 288 were for corporations and only 19 were for blacks.
It was frustrating that it took 600,000 people to be killed to get rights for people, but now with just a pen rights taken right back away from them. Allowing legal corporations to be legal people gives them the right to sue, buy, and sell. The question to be asked is if a corporation is a person then what kind of person would it be? This person is not like any other human and the only worry they have is their stakeholders. Companies may do charity work or even make something that benefits the earth or people, but their foundation is still in economics. They are legally bound to put their stakeholders ahead of everyone and everything.
Corporations cause a lot of harm to people and the environment. They have union busting, layoff, factory fires, dangerous products produced, toxic waste, pollution, synthetic chemicals, experimentation, factory farming, and habitat destruction just to name a few.
In third world countries there are jackets made that will be sold for $178 when the working was paid 84 cents to make it. A shirt that will be sold for $14 pays the woman 3 cents to make. The reporters that made this film tried to gain access to the workers and their working conditions to get this information exposed. There are spies from the company and military police that do not allow anyone near or to gain access to workers as much as possible. They know how bad it is. We are purchasing this shirt that states on the tag that part of the funds will help starving people not knowing that someone starving is making it for 3 cents.
The saddest part of this is the people may be happy to work for these wages. These people are hungry and poor. This low amount of payment is enough to keep them from starving to death, so they do not complain and happily take the job. They see Nike and other companies that do this as a gift from God or a miracle. However, when the people are no longer desperate and begin to want more pay they leave them and go to another area that is desperate so the cycle can start all over with low wages.
Karl Marx had a...