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Re: Congress' reaction to AIG bonuses -- am I the only one concerned?
From: David Farber <dave () farber net>
Date: Sat, 21 Mar 2009 21:53:55 -0400
Begin forwarded message:
From: Karl Auerbach <karl () cavebear com>
Date: March 21, 2009 7:25:22 PM EDT
To: dave () farber net, dmcknight15 () comcast net
Subject: Re: [IP] Re: Congress' reaction to AIG bonuses -- am I
the only one concerned?
David Farber wrote:
From: "Mac McKnight" <dmcknight15 () comcast net>
The key here is proper regulation. The strict free market advocates
Bush administration have caused us tremendous pain. We can’t place
tremendous responsibility for the wealth and well-being of our
the hands of such organizations with little or no oversight,
we view them as "too big to fail."
The "too big to fail" logic has been with us for decades - Lockheed
being an example of a company that were considered in that category in
Might it make sense in our yet-to-be constructed re-regulatory
structure to have caps on the size of corporate forms?
Some enterprises, such as the manufacture or aircraft or large
infrastructures (railroads, power) require large enterprises. But do
we really need mega-banks and mega-insurance companies?
We have come a long way, and in my mind much too far a way, down the
road of giving civil rights to corporate forms. And in the AIG bonus
situation we are seeing a reflection of a popular resentment against
the idea that potentially immortal corporations have the same civil
rights as living, breathing people.
And in the context of governance of the internet these artificial life
forms, corporations, are beginning to be granted political rights that
often exceed the rights of people.
It seems that the time is ripe to revisit our legal notions about what
is a corporate form, what are their rights, and what should be the
constraints on their activities and powers. I'm not suggesting a
return to the corporate charters of the early 19th century, but I am
suggesting that we are creating institutions that are so large, so
powerful, so immortal, that they are damaging the ability of our
governments to promote the general welfare and quality of life of its
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