Saturday, October 22, 2011
LEGAL FICTIONS - November 3, 2011
We have already had a bellyful of decisions from the SC like those deciding that money is protected speech and corporations are people with all the rights of the US Constitution’s First Amendment. Now comes the Chamber of Commerce, among other institutions, standing up for the principle that corruption is not criminal, but a legitimate means of obtaining profits, and thus business. And since business has been sanctified as a function of civilized life, this legitimizes it to the point that it is most likely to put the veil of trade secrets around practices that ordinary people think should be subject to the ordinary criminal laws. By a current report, almost all the GOP congressfolk adhere to the move to repeal the Federal Corrupt Practices Act, together with some Democratic Senators and Representatives. The fact that people are making money out of such actions is said to lend it the presumptions of legitimacy unless the contrary can be proved, likely requiring such proof beyond doubt. When I studied the law, I already saw the early form of this argument when e.g. the CEOs of the tobacco corporations all swore under oath that they believed that cigarettes were not addictive, and none were indicted for perjury. Even when strong evidence was found that they did not believe what they were saying, the fact that business was involved shielded them from prosecution. This is how low we have sunk in the deification of money, and the bulk of the US population seems able to accept the decision, together with the other ways in which the SC has proclaimed that money cleans all activities. The alchemists of the Middle Ages sought the universal solvent, which would dissolve every material, and in our own time, it seems to be gold. If we do not stand up for ourselves, we shall all be for sale. If we don’t vote for our autonomy, we shall likely lose it.