Corporations

First, let me deal with a boring but important matter of procedure. My opponent in this debate says that there is only black and white, only right and wrong in this argument and if I am for the existence of corporations in America then I am simply wrong – but there is another aspect to this discussion. My friend and opponent clearly also understands how to construct an argument that will benefit his position in this and carefully puts his opponents in a double bind – that is to have to answer a question like this:

So, tell us Joe…just exactly when did you stop beating your wife?

Assuming you are innocent of this crime, and you want to be truthful, how do you answer this question without appearing guilty? If you give a date, it means that you once did beat your wife and if you don’t give a date, the assumption is that the practice continues. Answering “I’ve never beaten my wife” does not answer the question, it avoids it.

So you can see how the framing of a premise both affects and effects an answer.

Joe has set up a similar situation. He is essentially asking:

So, tell us Mike, since we all know that corporations have always been evil, just when did corporations stop being evil?

My response was to reject the premise because, like the question above, to directly answer the question evades the real answer and answering in specific accepts the premise that corporations are inherently evil and anti-liberty – which I obviously do not agree with.

OK, enough of that.

Chief Justice Marshall in Dartmouth College v. Woodward (1819) defined corporations in this landmark case as:

A corporation is an artificial being, invisible, intangible, and existing only in contemplation of law. Being the mere creature of law, it possesses only those properties which the charter of its creation confers upon it, either expressly or as incidental to its very existence. These are such as are supposed best calculated to effect the object for which it was created. Among the most important are immortality, and, if the expression may be allowed, individuality; properties by which a perpetual succession of many persons are considered as the same, and may act as a single individual. They enable a corporation to manage its own affairs and to hold property without the perplexing intricacies, the hazardous and endless necessity of perpetual conveyances for the purpose of transmitting it from hand to hand. It is chiefly for the purpose of clothing bodies of men, in succession, with these qualities and capacities that corporations were invented and are in use.

“By these means, a perpetual succession of individuals are capable of acting for the promotion of the particular object, like one immortal being. But this being does not share in the civil government of the country, unless that be the purpose for which it was created. Its immortality no more confers on it political power, or a political character, than immortality would confer such power or character on a natural person. It is no more a state instrument than a natural person exercising the same powers would be.

Justice Baldwin in an assenting opinion in Proprietors of Charles River Bridge v. Proprietors of, 36 U.S. 420 (1837) 36 U.S. 420 (Pet.) defined corporations as follows:

“In this country, every person has a natural and inherent right of taking and enjoying property, which right is recognized and secured in the constitution of every state; bodies, societies and communities have the same right, but inasmuch as on the death of any person without a will, his property passes to his personal representative or heir, a mere association of individuals must hold their real and personal property subject to the rules of the common law. A charter is not necessary to give to a body of men the capacity to take and enjoy, unless there is some statute to prevent it, by imposing a restriction or prescribing a forfeiture, where there is a capacity to take and hold; the only thing wanting is the franchise of succession, so that the property of the society may pass to successors instead of heirs. Termes de la Ley 123; 1 Bl. Com. 368-72. This and other franchises are the ligaments which unite a body of men into one, and knit them together as a natural person (4 Co. 65 a); creating a corporation, an invisible incorporeal being, a metaphysical person (2 Pet. 223); existing only in contemplation of law, but having the properties of individuality (4 Wheat. 636), by which a perpetual succession of many persons are considered the same, and may act as a single individual. It is the object and effect of the incorporation, to give to the artificial person the same capacity and rights as a natural person can have, and when incorporated either by an express charter or one is presumed from prescription, they can take and enjoy property to the extent of their franchises as fully as an individual. Co. Litt. 132 b; 2 Day’s Com. Dig. 300; 1 Saund. 345. It bestows the character and properties of individuality on a collective and changing body of men (4 Pet. 562), by which their rights become as sacred as if they were held in severalty by natural person….”

So the idea of a corporation having some of the rights of an individual is nothing new.

The most recent challenge to this is the decision of the Supreme Court in Citizens United v. The Federal Election Commission, in which:

…the Court held that the First Amendment prohibited the government from restricting independent political expenditures by corporations and unions. The nonprofit groupCitizens United wanted to air a film critical of Hillary Clinton and to advertise the film during television broadcasts in apparent violation of the 2002Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (commonly known as the McCain–Feingold Act or “BCRA”).[2] In a 5–4 decision, the Court held that portions of BCRA §203 violated the First Amendment.

The decision reached the Supreme Court on appeal from a July 2008 decision by the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. Section 203 of BCRA defined an “electioneering communication” as a broadcast, cable, or satellite communication that mentioned a candidate within 60 days of a general election or 30 days of a primary, and prohibited such expenditures by corporations and unions. The lower court held that §203 of BCRA applied and prohibited Citizens United from advertising the film Hillary: The Movie in broadcasts or paying to have it shown on television within 30 days of the 2008 Democratic primaries.[1][3] The Supreme Court reversed, striking down those provisions of BCRA that prohibited corporations (including nonprofit corporations) and unions from spending on “electioneering communications”.[2]

The decision overruled Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce (1990) and partially overruled McConnell v. Federal Election Commission (2003).[4]The Court, however, upheld requirements for public disclosure by sponsors of advertisements (BCRA §201 and §311). The case did not involve the federal ban on direct contributions from corporations or unions to candidate campaigns or political parties, which remain illegal in races for federal office.

Corporate personhood is the legal concept that a corporation may sue and be sued in court in the same way as natural persons or unincorporated associations of persons. This doctrine in turn forms the basis for legal recognition that corporations, as groups of people, may hold and exercise certain rights under the common law and the U.S. Constitution. The doctrine does not hold that corporations are “people” in the most common usage of the word, nor does it grant to corporations all of the rights of citizens.

Joe seems to present them as sentient beings, acting as if they are alive and self-aware rather than at the behest of those they represent. As I pointed out, corporations do not vote (I’ve yet to see GE registered to vote) and are subject to regulations that are not applied to individuals, so they are NOT the same as an individual and have not been accorded true legal identity as a “person”. All Citizens’ United said was that a corporate organization had the right to speak in their own interests on behalf of their owners (the shareholders) without restriction in a political election just as a person has the same right.

Do corporations or “artificial entities” subvert natural law? Sure they can – and do – my arguments have never said that they don’t – but then any corporate body (or even individuals) can subvert natural laws through their actions, not limiting this discussion to businesses. Does that necessarily make them bad or evil simply because they exist? I do not believe it does because I believe (as Justice Marshall stated) that a corporation:

…possesses only those properties which the charter of its creation confers upon it, either expressly or as incidental to its very existence.

It would seem to me to be logical that if political involvement supported the chartered activity of the organization, that would be in the interest of its “very existence”. The CATO Institute’s Ilya Shapiro and Caitlyn W. McCarthy say it better than I have:

Much of the criticism of Citizens United stems from the claim that the Constitution does not protect corporations because they are not “real” people. While it’s true that corporations aren’t human beings, that truism is constitutionally irrelevant because corporations are formed by individuals as a means of exercising their constitutionally protected rights. When individuals pool their resources and speak under the legal fiction of a corporation, they do not lose their rights. It cannot be any other way; in a world where corporations are not entitled to constitutional protections, the police would be free to storm office buildings and seize computers or documents. The mayor of New York City could exercise eminent domain over Rockefeller Center by fiat and without compensation if he decides he’d like to move his office there. Moreover, the government would be able to censor all corporate speech, including that of so-called media corporations. In short, rights-bearing individuals do not forfeit those rights when they associate in groups.

We have never been a country based solely on natural law, something recognized in the preamble of the Constitution when it states:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

If a government is necessary to form a “more perfect” union, is that not a recognition that natural law in isolation is insufficient to achieve the ends of a proper government (of course, the Founders wisely went on to stipulate constraints on this perfect Union stuff by specifically listing enumerated powers)? That is not inherently evil, we relinquish parts of our natural liberty in exchange for an orderly society all the time – that is the basis for living under the rule of law.

If all corporate entities subvert liberty and natural law, does that not also argue that the protection of a free press – the “press” being made up of corporate organizations – the First Amendment, is against natural law?

Congress shall make no law …abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press…

In the most basic form of any definition of a corporation, all of our governments – federal, state and local – fit.

It seems that the issue here is accumulation of power (via money) by a corporation and money = power = evil. This can be true and untrue. As I stated in a comment, power in and of itself is not good or evil, the definition depends upon how that power is used.

I guess my problem is that the argument seems to be limited to corporations that make money and that they somehow subvert the “natural order” while the existence of all corporate entities is ignored – unless we are saying that all corporately organized entities are inherently evil and they never should be allowed. It just seems that the only reason that this seems to be an issue is that these corporations make money – a lot of it – and because of that and the power that money brings, the concept of the corporation is being attacked…but is it? I do not hear the same argument against religious organizations, fraternal organizations, governments or even charities – all examples of corporate organizations in the eyes of the law.

My point was that corporations are nothing but organizations of people, bound together by individual choice and driven to act in the best interests of the individual owner (the shareholder). The shareholder voluntarily agrees to the process of management of the organization through the purchase of stock and can end that arrangement at any time by selling that stock when it has met or no longer meets his or her goals.

To accept that an amoral structure, one acting to maximize the return on shareholder investment and one that is subject to the laws we decide to impose upon it, is simply evil on its face is illogical. If it is evil and behaves according to the laws, would that not mean that the laws are the problem?

As I stated, I am all for a discussion of the adequacy/inadequacy of the regulation of corporate entities. What I am not for is simply arguing that the very existence of a corporation is inherently bad, evil or subtractive to individual liberty since individuals form these organizations to pursue their guaranteed rights. I just don’t understand how the mere existence of GE, Exxon or Ford reduces my liberty.

As things are wont to go, there are opposing views on the subject. I disagree with Joe on this one just as there are two sides to the Citizens United case. As noted, this case overturned two earlier cases that ruled in the opposite way. I appreciate his passion and research; I just refuse to accept his premise that the very existence of an organization is evidence of its danger to individual liberty, especially when I believe, as Shapiro and McCarthy state, “corporations are formed by individuals as a means of exercising their constitutionally protected rights”.

My view of Joe’s position is like a drunk driver crashing his car and then blaming the car. With corporations, as with the car, it is the individual (or individuals) who are at the controls that matter. If corporations do subvert natural law, they do so because the individual subverts natural law and more to the point, they do so voluntarily.

I won’t convince Joe that I am right – I honestly view his fervor as a Quixotic quest – my hope is that the readers simply look at both positions and decide for themselves.

Ain’t liberty grand? This is why we can’t afford to lose it.

19 thoughts on “Corporations

    • Bingo.

      As I pointed out in an earlier comment, it takes two to tango. One hand clapping makes no sound. It is the corruption of the corporation that is at the root of this issue, not the corporate structure.

      • One point of difference with your OP.

        Your Opponents in this ,and their Progressive supporters, view you as Evil…..not merely wrong.
        Furthermore You ( and I ) were not ever to mention the Founders or their writings and thoughts again if we didn’t agree that a proper 20th and 21st century adherence to our founding principles would find unequivically that Corporations are anathema to Natural Law and thus True individual freedom. Now where exactly, in the Political sphere, do we find such inelastic Dictatorial rhetoric…?????

        As a note , I must add that any discussion of this which leaves out Unions and does not include them in the same equal footing is following the Same Prescription as the Left. Their Dialogue on the matter conveniently leaves out their Largest “Corporate” Group in their obvious attempt to sway populist opinion against “Big Business”, Corporations, and ultimately Capitalism altogether…….in much the same way they have done since Ida Tarbell. Nothing new under the Sun it seems.

        This is especially Transparent since all the relevent Court rulings and opinions include both Corporations and Unions as part of their analysis. I quoted one such in the Thread below.

  1. Great observation Kells.

    Utah: The corporation was never supposed to have free speech as detailed in the Constitution. They are man made entities and do not derive their rights from natural law. Their rights can be restricted by man. Articles of Incorporation are imposed by each Sovereign State, not the Federal Government.

    The problem that comes with the corporate structure is the fact that the corporation itself is amoral as you stated. So where is the corporation to get the morals needed to keep it from becoming one of those ‘Evil’ corporations. These decisions are generally made with thought for the benefit for the corporation not necessarily what is good for the Nation or the people. Since it has been established through history that even moral people, when put in the position to lead one of these mega businesses, can be seduced to the dark side and make decisions not in keeping with their moral upbringings. As I stated in another thread here power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    So who is to provide the moral framework that these businesses are expected to follow? If it is the government, as it should be, the relationship developed between the public sector unions and the government that writes the rules for them to follow, has proven that they deserve no to limited access to the political process.

    The corporation is a tool of Capitalism but the Crony Capitalism we have devolved into is abusing the Corporate Structure.

    • Triper: did you miss this part?

      While it’s true that corporations aren’t human beings, that truism is constitutionally irrelevant because corporations are formed by individuals as a means of exercising their constitutionally protected rights.

      Do you also realize that you just made my point?

      They are man made entities and do not derive their rights from natural law. Their rights can be restricted by man. Articles of Incorporation are imposed by each Sovereign State, not the Federal Government.

      Exactly. They are chartered by the individual states but are most certainly taxed and regulated at the federal level. They are governed by the laws we create, not by natural law – so stating that they break natural law is a non sequitur – we allowed them to break natural law via our creation of “artificial law”. To claim that something is wrong because it adheres to the laws that we made indicates flaws in the law, not the entity following them.

      I would argue that while you say that “The corporation was never supposed to have free speech as detailed in the Constitution”, there is almost 200 years of juris prudence that says differently – that aspect only changed about 25 years ago…so to say that they “never were intended to have” is a distortion of fact.

      Citizen’s United only overturned the two decisions that altered that 175 years plus of standing precedent to basically return the view of corporations to what it previously was.

      Your middle paragraph could be true of any group of people, corporately organized or not – so why is the corporation of the economic sense being singled out? Are we back to the populist revolt against the “robber barons” with the corporation as the new villain? Does this mean that the gal who owns the beauty shop with 6 chairs or the guy who owns the boarding kennel who rakes in $150K a year, both organized under a Sub-chapter “S” corporation are stealing my liberty?

      What about this? Is this not also true?

      In short, rights-bearing individuals do not forfeit those rights when they associate in groups.

      You can’t have it both ways – either no corporate entity is inherently anti-liberty or all of them are. If you pick one or the other, then you are validating my point that it is the individuals running the corporate entity that are the issue, not the mere creation of a corporation.

      • Utah:

        “While it’s true that corporations aren’t human beings, that truism is constitutionally irrelevant because corporations are formed by individuals as a means of exercising their constitutionally protected rights.”

        Yes people are exercising their constitutionally protected rights when they form or even invest in a corporation. And the people can voice their personal opinions at any time they want, with their own monies. But does the Corporation have the right to spend corporate monies, that belong to the investors, in political speech. Several Supreme Court rulings against the unions spending of their members union dues for political purposes indicate that this might not be the case. Curtailing of a corporations political spending in no way diminishes the individuals ability to spend their personal riches for political purposes. I in no way believe in the political or social direction of Bill Gates, and if i invest in Microsoft I should not have monies that should be part of my profit from the corporate business spent on Mr Gates social experiments.

        “Citizen’s United only overturned the two decisions that altered that 175 years plus of standing precedent to basically return the view of corporations to what it previously was.”

        So you are telling me that Corporations 175 years ago were allowed to own other companies, Own property other than what was necessary for their stated business, Contribute to political campaigns. I think you need to review the corporate charters issued as late as the 1880’s. And if our government felt as fatherly about the corporations as you allude to, why were there more cases brought before the courts citing the 14th Amendment in support of corporate person hood than there were actual cases of people claiming citizenship under the 14th Amendment? Something of interest during this period is the rise of corporate lawyers to the appellate and Supreme Court benches. Any bias in their decisions there?

        And yes I did support your premise the the corporation is needed. It structure is amoral and the officers that make up the corporation and direct it’s actions are partly to blame. Where we diverge is the importance of the corporation to our slide into mediocrity. And yes the politicians are right in there with the corporation. that is the hallmark of crony capitalism/fascism. State and business working together to direct the political direction of a nation, but that isn’t the nature of a Representative Republic.

  2. I thought Romney was right when he made the point in Iowa that corporations are made up of people. My company was a corporation, a small one, but definitely a corporation. Whenever I hear people talk about evil corporations I can’t help but wince because I certainly don’t think all corporations are bad any more than I think any group of people are bad. Like many things in life, corporations reflect the people who built them and run them.

  3. I’ve been following this whole exchange since the very beginning when Joe brought this revelation to our attention. Perhaps I maintain a weak inductive mind thus qualifying as a simpleton, but I have to ask: What is the bottom line to this whole…friendly…days running conversation (which I admit, has been quite stimulating, including the ProFessor’s random, incoherent, and irrelevant interjections. Iam also surprised that Kommie Karl has Been silent, void of his Marx plagiarism, on this subject)? I’m not taking a side here, but Im just wondering; assuming that Joe is correct (and I’m not saying that he is or isnt), How is a Corporation’s violation of Natual Law practical? Let’s say like the six-chaired salon owning gal, I want to pursue some sort of entrapraneurial endeavor (and I actually do), what does this mean for me? Don’t file with my State period and avoid partaking of this immorality? Don’t file as a certain type of entity? Preceed with the Proper steps as any other entrapraneur ever has? This is not sarcasm or mockery, Iam genuinely interested in knowing!

    • This is one of the best things that I have read. It was part of our business ethics curriculum in my MBA program. I think it will at least partially answer your question. I’ll post the link and the conclusion, but it is worth a full read. From the article titled: Natural Law and the Fiduciary Duties of Business Managers…it is a PDF file that will download or just google the title:

      This article has summarized the basic fiduciary duties of corporate directors and officers and has argued that these duties have their origin in principles of natural law. Recent corporate governance scandals reflect a widespread failure to adhere to these traditional duties of good faith, loyalty, and care.

      The factual record of governance failures is replete with examples of self-dealing and conflict of interest on the part of management, in which directors either participate or acquiesce. These examples invariably evidence a violation of the ancient rule by which an agent is not permitted to prefer his own interest to that of the principal, where the two conflict. The parable of the faithless steward in chapter 16 of Saint Luke’s gospel is a paradigm case. The most obvious common feature of recent managerial misdeeds is the financial interest of managers in increasing the value of their stock options and bonuses by manipulation of the corporate earnings through fraudulent accounting techniques.

      A related example is “insider trading,” in which managers use a corporate asset (confidential information about expected events) to make a personal trading profit. Another common abuse is the loan of corporate funds (sometimes amounting to tens of millions of dollars) to top executives for personal use.

      A common element in these transgressions has been the failure by boards of directors to exercise their duty of care. This duty, under American law, is not especially rigorous, as seen in the fact that a finding of liability requires grossly negligent behavior or obvious inattention to duty. Yet, in many recent cases of corporate disaster, boards have failed to uncover behavior that even a minimum investigation would have shown to be damaging or illegal and have awarded options, bonuses, and other forms of executive compensation in amounts that would have made Croesus blush. Officers and directors are not the only responsible parties. Outside accountants have sometimes ignored signs of financial fraud, influenced by reluctance to lose opportunities for additional lucrative business from the corporation. Recent administrative settlements have revealed that some major banks have aided and abetted fraudulent corporate activity in order to protect lending or other profitable relationships. All of these recent abuses are violations of basic moral principles and well-established legal duties worked out by legislatures, courts, and commentators over the centuries.

      The American system of free-market capitalism has been a powerful engine for the production of wealth, and it would be unwise to impair the effectiveness of this system through unnecessary government regulation. Yet, increased regulation is the inevitable result of massive corporate scandals that capture the attention of voters and their elected representatives. A far-better solution is for shareholders, who are the owners of corporations, to insist that those they hire to manage the business adhere to longstanding fiduciary standards of conduct, based on the traditional moral law and enforced by courts in accordance with regular and established procedures. There are some recent signs that major institutional shareholders (particularly pension funds) are beginning to use their power and influence to guard the corporate guardians and enforce the ancient rules.

      His article is filled with the points that I seem incapable of making well enough to be understood

    • Here’s another:

      Our review of the historical and religious origins of fiduciary relationships demonstrates that the concept of fiduciary was intended to be both a societal and a legal principle, and this is consistent with Friedman’s view of obeying the law and social custom. The leaders of organizations, as stewards, were responsible to the whole organization, and to society, not just to themselves or shareholders. Perhaps a revitalization of the stewardship principle is part of the new perspective required to create sustainable competitive advantage in today’s economy. We believe that there is room for stakeholder-focused management that does no harm to shareholder interests while also benefiting a larger constituency, and that fiduciary duties require the exercise of care, loyalty, obedience and good faith with regard to shareholders as well as to all stakeholders and the larger community.

    • Are you generally interested in “Knowing” … or have you decided that Corporations are evil ( immoral) already.

      I’m not asking rhetorically …. The Left has been for a long time trying to get people to view Corporations as evil ( and the people who advocate them). The campaign against Romney is but one Caricature …. Elizabeth Warren ( Echoed by Obama ) is another. The whole campaign is Long, Deep and Wide …. look at the “muckrakers” during the “Progressive Era” of American history.

      Kommie Karl isn’t commenting probably because Joe has made his points for him …. The “Professor” in between bites of his Chocolate Easter Eggs has been transparent about his Glee at the Fracteous nature of this Dialogue. To a large extent because Joe is articulating one of their Key pillars for them. Did you look a t the List I provided of “like-minded” sites to Joe’s position ?? One of them was “..Democracy in Action..”……………Remember them ??…..Look closly at the interviews of Lisa Fithian ( One of the Community Action Organizers of OCCUPY and Code Pink)……She is being interviewd by them….as were the two Phoney Reporters who got it started.

      There are more than mere hints at the Larger Agenda for everyone to see.

      • @Don: this is something that the left has in common with the fringe libertarian right, giving rise to the false label “liberaltarian” that was in vogue a few years back. Joe is most definitely not in the leftist camp but google “corporations”and “natural law” and you will find few but these two groups discussing this – and most hits will bring you back here.

        • You are absolutely right. However the AntiCorporation/Anti-Capitalism zeitgeist so popular of late and so pushed by Media and Political rhetoric is what “informs” the dialogue of even the Lowest of Non-info voters. Thus it emboldens those chipping away at the Foundations.

          I ( and this is a Personal discovery I grant You ) do not view the Constitution, BoR , Federalist/Anti-Fed dialogues as mere excercises in Political Philosophy and Political Economy…..nor is it my finding that the authors and Framers did so either. But rather these documents were expedients borne of necessity after actions taken upon the strongest conviction that conditions should be changed….and so were embued with the utmost earnest that these Documents should succeed in the real world.

  4. Iam most definitely not a part of the left. Nor did I ever claim that Corporations are evil. I don’t think corporations are evil. I think corporations can be USED for evil purposes, such as corporations in bed with Washington, but not evil and immoral in itself.

    I did see your list. I made no opinion of it though since I have not read every single post relevant to this subject of debate, for the proper context of that list. I did also watch Occupy Unmasked as you recommended.

    As I said, I’am not taking sides. I simply don’t have the understanding, and have not processed all of the material to form a solid opinion, to contend in serious debate. What Iam interested in is the practicality of this issue, as I originally inquired.

    • libercrite,

      Natural Law deals with real people. Corporations are not real people, therefore, when we treat them as such, it is a violation of Natural Law. Look at the resulting contradictions. Corporations can be people and property at the same time. They can be owned and own another “person” at the same time.

      Another problem is that they shield the owners from legal and financial liability. In fact, this is their primary purpose. This is a violation of natural law — a big one. How can anyone be held accountable for their actions if the corporation is blamed? A corporation is fake, it isn’t real.

      Something to think about: NONE of the businesses in Atlas Shrugged would function any differently if they were sole proprietorships or partnerships. What’s more, many of the cooperative relationships in the story, like between Taggart Rail Road and Rearden Steel, would function just fine as co-ops, while, at the same time, staying firmly within the confines of natural law and leaving all responsible parties fully answerable to the law and to any financial liabilities they may incur. So where is the need for a corporation?

      Here’s the difference. A corporation is a creation of the public, therefore, — whether the corporate owners like it or not — the people have a just claim to legislate over it any way they damn well please. (By the way, to those who do not fully recognize or understand my argument, this includes ANY corporate entity — unions and governments included). So, as long as the corporation is used as it has been (and it always will be — it doesn’t matter how “well intentioned’ the ownership, it’s a simple fact of history), then the Left — which is in power — will be able to use the laws to dictate how the property and profits from those corporations are used/distributed. This is one of the central problems facing our economy today: the Left actually does have philosophical claim to their legal meddling in business, thus, there really is no “private sector” — at least, not where the corporation is involved. This applies to ALL corporate structures — EVERY ONE! And this is one of the reasons the Right loses its arguments in court.

      Now, change this and go back to true private ownership of industry through proprietorships, partnerships and cooperatives and ALL of this goes away. the Left looses their entire foundation for attacking the free market and private property becomes as secure as it can be in a society where the people can vote themselves other people’s money. THIS is what I have been advocating — not an attack on liberty or free enterprise.

    • Well as a practical matter you will have to dance to the tune of the Piper. I have two small businesses one employs 3 including myself….the other 27. Depending on the type of Business there are umpteen regulations to adhere to and the corresponding paperwork. Sole Proprietor, S-Corp C-Corp, LLc, LLP, PA there are any number of avenues to incorporatiing at your level.

      I would do what is legal and appropriate …. and follow your business plan. If the winds change or you decide upon a different Philosophical position later you can undo or re-do to meet your new internal requirements. But the Focus now should be on your idea and its execution ( Plan) which of course includes Capital Planning…with stages. The single most important element is your Desire to engage and Succeed. A Gowing concern ( outside of Government especially) is a valuable thing fo you and your family….AND as an example to others.

      If America pulls out …. it will need the Effort and Example and Experience of People pursuing their Dreams. Nothing beats success it… really is beneficial to all around. At this time and in this place … Debt is NOT your friend….but you probably know that. A consistant money stream even if small is the grease for these times…..if you can tap into a stream , go for it !!

  5. This is probably a stupid question, but just for the sake of clarity, is a corporation any business that has filed as a specific entity? Or are there certain elements that a business has to obtain to be considered a corporation?

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