Tea and Corporations

Tea Party name is a misnomer

       The Deciding Moment:
          The Theft of Human Rights
          (From Thom Hartmann's blog)

"The first thing to understand is the difference between the natural person and the fictitious person called a corporation. They differ in the purpose for which they are created, in the strength which they possess, and in the restraints under which they act.
   Man is the handiwork of God and was placed upon earth to carry out a Divine purpose; the corporation is the handiwork of man and created to carry out a money-making policy.
   There is comparatively little difference in the strength of men; a corporation may be one hundred, one thousand, or even one million times stronger than the average man.
   Man acts under the restraints of conscience, and is influenced also by a belief in a future life. A corporation has no soul and cares nothing about the hereafter...
   A corporation has no rights except those given it by law. It can exercise no power except that conferred upon it by the people through legislation, and the people should be as free to withhold as to give, public interest and not private advantage being the end in view."
    - William Jennings Bryan, address to
    the Ohio 1912 Constitutional Convention
The Tea Party got it wrong when it picked its name. They thought the original Boston Tea Party was about being anti-government. The Neo-Tea Partiers' anti-regulation policies protecting corporations are exactly opposite to what took place in 1773.

   What went on back then was the model for the corporate takeover of government we are experiencing today. Mad, bad King George III was a bought ruler, a shareholder in the giant East India Company. At their urging, and to his own profit, King George authorized the Tea Act of 1773. Over 2000 colonists rallied in Boston. A group led by Samuel Adams dressed as Indians and went aboard all the ships at Griffin's wharf and threw 342 chests of tea into the harbor.

   Today's reaction against corporate greed is coming from the 99% movement. Tea monopolies are not the target, but the "public be damned" policies of petroleum, gas, coal giants, and especially banks and hedge funds are. They get favorable legislation by bribing congressmen with obscene campaign contributions. The extremely wealthy 1% are protected by the Neo-Tea Partiers and their captive Republican party.

   We citizens who are offended by corporate "personhood", by campaign finance practices, and by the preposterous disparity in personal wealth don't have an obvious "tea chest" solution. The Occupiers have made us all more aware, more outraged. But it will require long, even tedious, political action to correct our country's inequities. Demonstrations help, but it takes reformation of our laws to accomplish the goals.

   For a detailed exposition of all this a good sourcebook is Thom Hartmann's  "UnEqual Protection: the Rise of Corporate Dominance and the Theft of Human Rights."

   It's written in layspeak and really covers the territory.

   Richard C. Bartlett,    Cotuit

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