hearts and minds

August 7, 2014

Stop the Partisan Divisiveness and the Bi-Partisan Deception

For a pioneering revolutionary document that established a democratic republic ten or 12 generations ago, it is surprising how little the U.S. Constitution explicitly talks about “the People”. This founding document shaped the clear outlines and principles of a new and independent government that was to be of, by, and for the people, while hardly mentioning the word, “People”. The key word People appears once in the single ringing sentence known to all as the Preamble. And then it appears only one more time in all of the seven Articles which follow the Preamble sentence. I’ll say that again, for emphasis. The word People appears only once in all seven Articles of the U.S. Constitution! For a particularly interesting and very relevant contrast, the word Party actually appears three times in those same seven Articles. [“Party” in the Constitution does not refer to a celebration or to a political affiliation. “Party”, as used in the U.S. Constitution, is an encompassing word that refers to a legal entity… which can be a government agency, branch or subdivision; or a chartered for-profit company; or an educational, charitable, or religious institution; or a labor union; or a person.]

On the other hand, the word Person appears 22 times (twenty two) in those seven Articles.
That is just one reason – one of the least important reasons, by the way – why I urge that our sound-bite slogan, and the core principle of our Movement to end corporate control of government, should be:


rather than the confusing, misdirected, divisive sound bite slogan: “CORPORATIONS ARE NOT PEOPLE”.
And, we need to realize and come to terms with the fact that, under the U.S. Constitution:
a corporation is a Party, not a Person.

In biology, a mouse is a mammal and a man is a mammal. They’re both mammals. But a mouse is not a man. Similarly, a corporation, or other artificial legal entity, can be a Party and a person can be a Party under the Constitution. But a corporation is not a Person, in the meaning of the U.S. Constitution.

While we’re at it, we could think about the one and only sentence in all of the seven Articles of the U.S. Constitution, where the word People IS actually used: That would be in Article I, Section 2 – the second sentence of the U.S. Constitution following the Preamble.

“The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States …” That’s it, folks – that’s the only sentence in all seven Articles of the United States Constitution where the word “People” appears. The Supreme Court, the mass media, and most especially “We the People” should carefully note and respect that sentence. It does NOT say that political parties, or major campaign “donors”, or artificial legal entities, or lobbyists, or citizens of other states or other countries, shall choose the Members of the House of Representatives. It says that “the People of the several States” shall choose their Representatives in the House. That’s what the Constitution says, and that is not an arcane, unrealistic 18th century concept. It’s an ignored and egregiously violated Constitutional mandate.

It has long, and increasingly, been accepted as completely normal and legal that Republicans and Democrats (claiming to be ‘progressives’ or ‘liberals’ or ‘conservatives’ or ‘libertarians’ … or whatever) in or running for Congress are ALL constantly, and first and foremost, seeking tubs of money from trans-national corporations, out of state “donors”, and the super-rich, and the approval of one of the two corporate controlled political parties. If you don’t have lots of this kind of corporate money and approval, the corporate mass media, and the two corporate-controlled political parties, will simply dismiss and ‘disappear’ you as a legitimate candidate for public office.

Now I am not suggesting or endorsing unilateral disarmament and disengagement by citizens with integrity in the face of corporate rule and outrageous corruption. But we must realize that the Constitution clearly and explicitly states that our Representatives shall be chosen by the people of the several states.
That sentence also makes partisan re-districting (especially the anti-democracy, secret, privatized version that we experienced in Wisconsin in 2010) blatantly unconstitutional. Actually, at-large elections, with ranked preference voting, coupled with strict prohibitions on any election interference from any artificial legal entities or from persons who are not residents of the state, conducted with public financing of elections, is the right way and the only way to comply with this simple Constitutional requirement.

Declaration of Independence from Corporate Rule

1 Comment »

  1. I somehow got on your e-mail list. Please add an “unsubscribe” feature. I sympathize with most of your views, but find your writing too platitudinous for my taste.

    Comment by Ann Pyst — August 20, 2014 @ 7:01 pm | Reply

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