cj#268> Lowry re: Coevolution & MEME 1.04


Richard Moore

Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 00:00:12 -0700
Sender: •••@••.••• (John Lowry)
Subject: Re: cj#267> Coevolution & MEME 1.04

> ...
>Constitutional government and the corporation fuse seamlessly into the
>out-of-control corporate state: of, by, and for the anonymous accumulation
>of wealth and power.  Add to this the mass media (a subset of corporate
>capitalism), and you can see that humanity is hemmed in on all sides by
>long-evolving robots already!
>These considerations make the threat of bio/mechanical robots less unique,
>but that discovery somehow fails to comfort one.


Thanks for this piece.  While I havn't done the research myself, I believe
the corporation was cooked-up by 15th century Italian bankers, for the good
and "noble" reason of encouraging the taking of economic risk that might
rebound to the public interest.  In my opinion, any form that promotes
collective governance is preferred to one that fosters a wild-eyed

The research I have done myself was into the question of why Merrill, Lynch,
Pierce, Fenner & Bean, the world's best-known stockbroker, changed its
organizational form from a general partnetship of the principals, first to a
professional corporation, and then to a fully public corporation?  Certainly
the rules of a general partnership would suggest to a potential client that
these men take their work seriously and are willing to stand behind their
judgments.  And under this arrangement the firm grew to its position of
prominance in and beyond financial circles.  Then why the change?

The answer is simple.  The partners began to die off, and the younger men
were unwilling to put their money where their mouthes were, so the firm had
to go to limited liability routes for its new capital.  In the aftermath of
WWII, where our industries experienced extraordinary growth and
profitability, the pressure was on to maintain those levels, even though the
external threat was gone, and all the stops were pulled to maintain profit
maximation.  Merrill Lynch led the way, but was not alone.  The root
culprit, IMO, was the dictionary, which changed the core definition of
"profit," from "mutual benefit" to "gain or advantage."

Since there is no going back, I believe we should take Ralph Nader's
suggestion and federalize the corporate charter so as to establish proper
criteria for the privalege.  While we're at it, we could also stipulate that
the corporation be governed by a balanced representation of its stakeholder



 Posted by      Richard K. Moore <•••@••.•••>
                Wexford, Ireland (USA citizen)
                Editor: The Cyberjournal (@CPSR.ORG)

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