“Corporations are people, my friend”

Lying, psychopathic, conniving, greedy, murderous people, if it were the case.

It has been said that conspiracy theorists lack imagination. In effect, conspiracy theories can be a very effective device for masking actual, documented, manipulation. While racist bigots try to revive the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, transnational corporations’ assault on everything that stand in the way of their profits continues, unabated.

Just a few examples:

The Koch brothers, who have graced this space before (for instance here and here) have created a wide-ranging apparatus to leverage their fortune in order to remake the US more accordingly to their agenda. In yet another example, one of the many organizations funded by the duo crafted a "civics course" summarized as follows: “In its materials for teachers and students, the Bill of Rights Institute cherry-picks the Constitution, history, and current events to hammer home its libertarian message that the owners of private property should be free to manage their wealth as they see fit." Civics Lessons Financed by the Koch Brothers

In another example of how corporations use PR to shape public opinion according to their designs, leaked documents show a campaign commissioned by Big Oil to expand their political influence through third-party advocates.
Leaked docs detail Big Oil and Big PR’s plans for a opinion-manipulation platform

(in this regard I cannot recommend enough a real classic on this subject: Ewen, Stuart. PR!: a social history of spin. Basic Books, 2008.)

Still on the issue of PR, an interview with Michael Hudson sheds light on one of the most powerful arms of the industry, the "think tank", PR operations with a scholarly veneer, always ready to produce "evidence" aligned with the interests of their funders.
Think Tank Memories

Finally, a concrete example of the consequences of the manipulation of the political process by monied interests, the submission of the legal system to the power of corporations, known as "corporate sovereignty": "EU establishment figures who defend corporate sovereignty point out that many EU states already have corporate sovereignty clauses in their trade pacts (mostly former Soviet states whom the US arm-twisted into the deal as a condition of helping them escape Russia’s orbit). What they don’t mention is how much claims under these treaties cost the EU: at least €30 billion is sought in the 127 known corporate sovereignty cases the EU has seen (exact figures are impossible to get, because corporate sovereignty settlements are usually arrived at in secret, ensuring that citizens don’t know how much their governments are paying for foreign companies)."
Corporate sovereignty: already costing the EU billions


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