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I awoke this morning, and turned on the radio. It was the ending of the Thom Hartman show on KVT.

A caller was discussing what he called “externalities”

 [Factors whose costs are not reflected in the market price of goods and services. Externalities are a loss in the welfare of one party resulting from an activity of another party, without there being any compensation for the losing party. Externalities are an important consideration in cost-benefit analysis.   (businessdictionary.com)]

Hartmann commented that the American business model calls for privatizing the profits and socializing the externalities.

He cited two examples:

  • Fossil fuels are refined and sold with the profits going to the stockholders.  The “wastes” are spewed into the atmosphere. Who pays for these costs? “We” do!
  • Gun manufacturers make, sell and profit from their product. People are killed and injured from the misuse of these products resulting in costs for hospitals, law
    enforcement, etc. Who pays for these costs? We do!

Hartmann concluded that we need to amend our current business model so that the producers are responsible for the costs of these externalities.

Good ideas. How can we make them happen?


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Nationalize corporate laws

Possibly one way is to rewrite (change) corporate law.

"Corporate law (also "company" or "corporations" law) is the study of how shareholders, directors, employees, creditors, and other stakeholders such as consumers, the community and the environment interact with one another. Corporate law is a part of a broader companies law (or law of business associations)." ~Wiki



“A corporation is a legal entity created under the laws of the state its incorporated within. State laws which vary from state to state, regulate the creation, organization and dissolution of their corporations…Corporations are often used in tax structuring, as they are taxed at a lower rate than individuals.”

~Vidda~ One possible solution: Nationalize corporate laws to dissolve fifty ways of doing business and to restructure the tax and liability components in an equitable manner, more suited to fair play and level the playing to better protect the interests of the individual.~


I'll argue a bit

Seems like a wimpy way of not outlawing the things we don't want.

Don't want guns? Outlaw them! Don't want emissions? Outlaw them! Don't want cigarettes or liquor? Outlaw them!

Instead we pretend these things may be made and sold, and then look for way to punish people for doing so. We add sin taxes and make rules about where things can be used and such.

Gun manufacturers shouldn't be responsible for what people do with their products, just like other manufacturers shouldn't be held responsible for what people do with theirs. The person liable is the one (mis)using the product.

I fell rather strongly about this because this site is protected by laws that say we can't be held liable for what our users do. Same with Google, YouTube and everything else out there. Without this protection, we'd all shut down. The law says the person liable for something is the person doing it, not the folks providing the tool or product.

If something is bad, let's just get rid of it. Adding in costs to things doesn't stop them.


I do have a socialist thread

I do have a socialist thread in me. And, it would bother me when a nationstate starts outlawing things both as one central authority and/or 50 ways.

It immediately sends up my red flags. Who gets to decide what is outlawed? (Of course that question will be asked any which way.)

Except for emissions, there are people who want guns, cigarettes and alcohol.

My salient point was to “Nationalize corporate laws to restructure the tax and liability components in an equitable manner, more suited to fair play and level the playing to better protect the interests of the individual.~"

I think you raise some interesting points but I wrote about to restructure tax and liability equitably and in a fair manner.

But, I said nothing about costs, who would or would not be held liable because those are sidebar issues to the centerpoint of nationalizing corporate law…and, moreover there is a boatload of iffies and conditions in an infrastructure change –fifty states distilled down to one centralization.

There is no doubt that many people find serious issues with corporate power and wealth. So, hit em where you can hurt them. Or, that might be too wimpy :)

If it comes to nationalizing corporate law, I doubt I’ll be involved with the boatload of details and particulars. It sounds like you might be, or not…


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