Monday, September 27, 2004

The Corporate Person

For lunch today, I left work and headed for Chermside Shopping Centre. We were in desperate need of a new battery for one of the nurses' mobile phones and also another pack of CD-Rs. I was contemplating the thought of getting sushi or perhaps Subway, but then from the corner of my eye, I spotted the infamous golden arches of McDonald's shining in the distance and through some bizarre function of my mind, the mysterious inner logic of my head, decided that a Big Mac meal was strangely, the best choice for my lunch time purchase. The corporate battle had been won.

Tonight, The Corporation, a documentary exposing the many transgressions of corporate organisations against life and humanity, was playing to a small audience at the modest Schonell Theatre over at the University of Queensland. It was all the usual stuff, multinational companies disregarding human health, animal suffering, environmental issues and everything else, in favor of the almighty dollar. To a corporation, everything is secondary to profit and proliferation.

One interesting thing I learned from the film that I didn't previously know, is that a corporation in the eyes of the law, owned by many different shareholders, is considered to be a 'person' in its own right. The corporate person enjoys all the financial rights and privileges of a human person, yet is not bound by any moral standards, not bound by anything really except the objective to gain more capital.

Callous unconcern for the feelings of others, incapacity to maintain enduring relationships, reckless disregard for the safety of others, incapacity to express guilt, failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behaviors. The film's "Personality Diagnosis Checklist" makes it clear that many of today's corporate persons are undoubtedly not quite right in the head.

Perhaps I'll think twice next time I'm out to lunch, waiting to consume. The corporate war is not over yet.


The next step?

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