|If you are one of most Americans who own stocks or corporate bonds, thanks to |
retirement plans, mutual funds and such, you are owning a piece of "Corporate America". But wait, before getting complacent and letting out a tearful "being proud to be an American", make sure your pride and loyalty as a shareholder are carefully guarded by
blindness and naiveté, because the corporations have no scruples in ignoring, or even going against your interests, as long as it serves theirs.
The truth is, shareholders or not, the majority of people in this country are passive receivers of whatever, be it government, policies, or sometimes even perceptions, handed out by "corporations", and when the corporations screw up , the consequences would be all ours. The insignificance of our paltry ownership of this Corporate America destines that our voice be unheard, our opinions ignored, and our interests, whenever contrasting
to that of corporates, invariably trampled.
When Monsanto and other bioengineering corporations are ready to push their transgenic products to the market, the government's stand is duly in their favor. The FDA forgoes stringent safety tests and gives their green light by assuming the GMO foods are safe because they're claimed to be equivalent to the conventional products. Whatever the FDA's concerns are on this account, the consumers' interests and opinions are not among them. There was never a public educational or view-solicitation program on changes so drastic and so important to our daily lives. Instead, the tactic of Corporate America, with corporations
and their representatives in the form of government, is to smuggle those products onto the supermarket shelves with as least fanfare as possible, so most consumers wouldn't even notice anything changing. For those unlucky few who happened to get wind of it, and
dare to question it, there're answers, loads of them, manufactured by PR companies hired by the Monsanto's. To the even fewer who are still unconvinced by this gigantic PR machine, who wisely understand their powerlessness in blocking the onslaught of bioengineering corporations, and hence content themselves by requesting only the proper
GMO food labeling so they can opt-out in purchasing them, the outcry is ignored. After all, it goes against the most important marketing tactic of the corporations, and it's the
corporations' interest, not the individual American's, that this country cares about and serves.
This is not surprising, considering how our government itself is molded by big
corporations. It's the corporation money that keeps most politicians' career aspirations afloat. Without those fat checks to buy the mass media for face-time, the chance to have a successful campaign is next to zero. This political system is nicely convenient to the Corporate America, and thus carefully designed and strenuously maintained in this country, as very few industrial countries do. Look who were the privileged ones invited into our vice president's secret national energy meeting - the industrial leaders, or more accurately, the biggest campaign donors. You shouldn't really be surprised that California energy crisis was intentionally brought upon by big corporations, (with the help of
government policy, they have that capacity and after all, business is business); And the individual investors are the one who default first on the Enron's collapse, (individuals are,
of course, outside of government concern); And the vice president refused independent scrutinization of the content of that mysterious meeting, (again, those secrets are entitled
to be kept as they were, which is the best call to the interest of corporations involved).
What is insanely unhealthy about this political system is not one politician corrupted, or one party strayed. It's the core concept of the "Corporate America" which entrenches every part of our nation, that is marginalizing our individual rights, and defeating our
democratic process. On issues where corporations go against the majority wish, they can work the process by channeling the energy, lobbying the government and concentrating the votes. A first hand example is banning for dangerous weapons. Though national poll
shows 2/3 of Americans are for it, but the NRA, representing the big and small gun-shop owners, overturned it successfully because they have the vast resources to get the 1/3 vote focus on this single issue while the majority 2/3 disperse theirs on others. The majority
democracy evaporated in this case, and all the politicians are taking notes. It's no wonder to see how hard for the grassroot third-parties to break into mainstream - because by being grassroot, they're fighting uphill against the "Corporate America".
President Lincoln's vision of what this country is all about, given by his famous Gettysburg speech would need some fundamental revision today - it's by the corporate, for the corporate and of the corporate.
The above article and its followup discussion are published on http://www.crossvoice.com
About the Author
Publisher of CrossVoice - magazine featuring stories, opinions and reviews on politics, pop culture and commercial products
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