Eagerly Awaiting Corporate Extermination

“Hate” is a word and an emotion which should be used as sparingly as possible, to be saved for only the most despicable forces, conditions, and beings. I dislike liver and onions, driving on black ice, and ear infections, but hate war, poverty, and corporations. Hatred is reserved for only those people, places, and things which threaten Pachamama and the future existence of all life forms. At least two of my relatives would strongly disapprove of me including corporations on my hate list, but neither of them pays any attention to my thoughts or ramblings anyway. One is a rising star in the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the other is a U.S. Congressman from an extremely conservative district. I don’t hate either of them. Misguided ignorance can only be disliked. But I’d guess that they might hate me, because I seek to abolish their livelihoods and cast aspersions on their noxious notions.

The hatred which I harbor for corporations harkens back to my two years as a corporate president. It was nothing like Monsanto, Boeing, or Exxon-Mobil. Not even a publicly owned company. Just a 9′ by 13′ espresso bar and grill, serving burgers, fries, and breakfast burritos. I was president/secretary/cook and my partner was vice president/treasurer/barista. Before commencing business, we solicited the advice of a lawyer. He strongly recommended forming a corporation. Why? To eliminate all personal responsibility and liability for any of a thousand of situations which might have resulted in lawsuits. And there, in just a few words, is the basic problem with corporations. Although they only exist on paper, corporations remove the “responsibility” monkey from the backs of business people, allowing them to give full attention to producing the most possible profit, no matter who or what they damage in the process. As per corporate charter, it’s what they’re required to do. Pachamama be damned.

You might be wondering why it is that I can hate corporations with the same fervor with which I hate war and poverty. The simple answer is that corporations are a major cause of war and poverty. Take a walk out into the Sonoran Desert and ask a few of the Mexicans and Central Americans who are dying of thirst under the Arizona sun about the economic conditions which drove them to risk life and limb to find jobs in the U.S.A. You’ll discover that they lost their livelihoods largely thanks to corporate gifts called free trade agreements with names like CAFTA and NAFTA. As economist Robert Reich describes these job killing treaties, their aim is to “boost the 1% and bust the rest”. Soon, the economic carnage may spread to the rest of the planet by way of a new generation of schemes, dreamed up by the wealthiest industrialists and top government executives. When TPP, TTIP, CETA, and TISA are fast-tracked through the legislatures of the world, 80% of all trade may fall under their jurisdiction. And when this happens, there will be no stopping any corporation suspected of pollution, slave-trafficking, or even murder, if it can be shown that their malfeasance was necessary for the production of profit. These new treaties give corporations precedence over international governments and their laws.

Then there’s the Citizens United Supreme Court ruling. In 2010, our fascist judges, in their infinite wisdom, saw fit to consummate the marriage between corporate and government power by giving corporations free reign to buy elections and candidates for public office. It is unfortunate that this new corporate power didn’t come with a requirement that elected officials wear and display the corporate logos of those who own them. Once you understand and accept the fact that corporations own your government representatives, it only follows that they own you as well. I don’t know about you, but I make a lousy slave. I’m unruly, uncooperative, and don’t work well under the whip. My hatred for corporations only grows stronger as I write this.

Not to be satisfied with controlling representatives and laws at the national level, corporations have infiltrated and now own public fish in the smaller ponds of state and city government. ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) and ACCE (American City and County Exchange) are organizations formed with the expressed purpose of writing corporate-friendly legislation at the state (ALEC) and local (ACCE) levels. At their meetings, good ol’ boys from the corporate world get to rub elbows with local yokel state representatives and city council members. After the obligatory wining, dining, and after-dinner cigars, the corporate agenda is passed along to the participants in the public sector, along with fat checks which insure their reelection to public office. More often than not, the corporate agenda is written by the corporations themselves, and is magically turned into law by their underlings in office. My relative in the U.S. Congress was once an active ALEC member, and he can thank all those “incentive” checks he pocketed for helping catapult him into the big leagues of corruption in D.C.

In all fairness, my relative who whores for the Chamber of Commerce, probably doesn’t even know that his employer is an active and giving ALEC member, which fights against all progressive legislation, wherever it raises its ugly head. He doesn’t understand that the folks who write his paycheck are the single most generous contributors to the political campaigns of the most conservative, corporate-friendly, anti-employee, pro-war, mostly republican candidates in all fifty states. I doubt whether he realizes that fascism is the merger of state and corporate power, and that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is one of the most powerful fascist organizations on earth. Ignorance is bliss.

But how can I possibly blame war on corporations? This is too easy, and I’ll bet you already know the answer. Of course, our so-called defense contractors are first in line when it comes to buying legislators, penning legislation, and making damned certain that the so-called defense budget grows in leaps and bounds every year. Really? Only 56% of the pie? Then there are the secret meetings. Likely they happen all the time, but there’s no way you and I will know about them. Hence, the word “secret”. But Michel Chussodovsky exposed one such soiree in a recent article. It took place on August 6th, 2003 at Strategic Command Headquarters, Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska. The meeting that “set the stage for the privatization of nuclear war. Corporations not only reap multibillion-dollar profits from the production of nuclear bombs, they also have a direct voice in setting the agenda regarding the use and deployment of nuclear weapons.”

The secret meeting commenced on the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing, and adjourned on the anniversary of the nuking of Nagasaki. Those in attendance included high ranking members of the U.S. Military, so-called defense contractors, nuclear industry executives, and scientists. Professor Chossudovsky tells us that as a result of this meeting:  “All the safeguards of the Cold War era, which categorized the nuclear bomb as a ‘weapon of last resort’, have been scrapped. Offensive military actions using nuclear warheads are now described as acts of self defense”. Welcome to the brave new world of careless military madness, sponsored tonight by the Military-Industrial Complex which President Eisenhower warned us all about. At General Electric, progress is our most important product, and we do appear to be progressing with increasing velocity toward the unthinkable. This may be the most egregious imaginable corporate assault on Pachamama, but at least a few top nuclear industry executives and high-ranking military officers will reap some short-term benefits. The rest of us should start practicing the art of kissing our asses good-bye.

Back in 2002, when I became president of my little restaurant corporation (D.O.G. Inc.), I had no evil plan in mind. Had no intention of poisoning anyone, polluting any streams, lakes, or oceans, starving any Mexicans, or starting a nuclear war. Mine was a relatively benign corporation. But it did have one nasty facet. The mere fact that it was a corporation completely freed me of any personal responsibility or liability for my actions. Such freedom only opens the door of opportunity to those whose intentions are impure, greedy, and typically human. And it is my estimation that corporations are the reason for a lion’s share of what is wrong with the world in which we now live. They must be exterminated. They must be eliminated. We need a corporacide, and we need it now.

Those who know me understand that I have little love for any organized religion, and for Catholicism in particular. Therefore, it may be surprising that I’m ending this tale with a quote from a Catholic abbot from about 800 years ago. Arnaud Amalric was laying siege to a city of 20,000 people back during the Albigensian Crusade. One of his officers expressed concern that the residents who’d already converted to Catholicism might be killed along with the heathens. Arnaud replied: “Caedite eos. Novit enim Dominus qui sunt eius.” I feel exactly the same way about all corporations that the good abbot did about the residents of Beziers. For those of us who aren’t fluent in dead languages, Arnaud and I agree that we should “Kill them all and let God sort them out”.

John R. Hall: Meanderer, dreamer, mountaineer, restaurateur, military draft refusing felon, wannabe revolutionary, and citizen of Earth, observes the circus of life, and writes from wherever the north winds blow him. He can most likely be found somewhere in The Hawaiian Island Chain, in Mexico's Corazon, in The Sonoran Desert of Arizona, The Mohave Desert of Nevada, The high deserts of New Mexico, on a Teton glacier in Northwest Wyoming...or at halls245@msn.com. Read other articles by John Rohn.