Featured Quote

In 1913, Henry Ford wrote the following as the directors had been reaping the rewards of profits - "The wages we pay are too small in comparison with our profits. I think we should raise our minimum pay rate".

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Realizing the Promise of Democracy

Today, we have allowed tyrants to usurp our democracy.  This is a Fact.  Corporations have moved into the forefront and are poised to seize power out of the hands of the People.  These Artificial Entities should not have the same rights as natural people.

You know, I was looking for movies where "corporations have taken over" - but most I found were Factual Documentaries!!  I was looking for movies like Robocop, Max Headroom, Total Recall and stuff where in the 'near future' corporations have taken over control of the country and everything is the worse off for it.  Yet, what I got were movies like The Corporation (and a sermon, based on the book, that is well worth a read and a few thoughts) and Flow and others.  Reality based movies are more frightening than fiction!  At least in the Fiction movies, there is a happy ending or a victory for the heroes.  What we see in reality is a long, hard fight ahead of us - or eventual enslavement.

Thomas Jefferson spoke against the rise of corporations ("Rise of the Machines"?) often.  The idea of Corporate Personhood - our very own Frankenstein's Monster - is a bad one that needs to be put down.

I believe that the first step to protecting the promise of Democracy - the very foundation of our Democratic Republic that is the United States of America - is the work being undertaken by the Move to Amend group.  The goal is to amend the Constitution to forever define corporations as created legal entities, not Citizens.  This will protect the rights of Citizens - We, the People - to govern ourselves, protecting us from our own soulless creations. (Yes, "I, Robot" is running through my head!)  Maybe, if we had businessmen the likes of Henry Ford, it would not be such a bad thing.  But, sadly, we do not have such noble and fair-minded individuals.

Okay - some may say its only because he supported my idea of paying your workers enough to buy the products they help produce... but I only read about that for writing this piece!
When Ford started the 40-hour work week and a minimum wage, he was criticized by other industrialists and by Wall Street. He proved, however, that paying people more would enable Ford workers to afford the cars they were producing and be good for the economy. Ford explained the change in part of the "Wages" chapter of My Life and Work. He labeled the increased compensation as profit-sharing rather than wages.
 and another quote I found browsing around :
In 1913, Ford wrote the following as the directors had been reaping the rewards of profits - "The wages we pay are too small in comparison with our profits. I think we should raise our minimum pay rate".
 Alas, we now have offspring of the Dodge brothers - who sued Ford when he tried to profit-share with his workers (as well as shareholders) too much.  They then had the nerve to start up a competitor!  ( I will never buy a Dodge now. )  So, Move to Amend is something that is fundamentally necessary to protect our Democracy!

Another item that I believe would further promote our Democratic process - though I strongly suspect corporations would attempt to take over and sway opinions in the process - is the National Initiative for Democracy.