Corporations and American Democracy

Author: Naomi R. Lamoreaux
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674977716
Release Date: 2017-05-08
Genre: History

Recent Supreme Court decisions in Citizens United and other high-profile cases have sparked disagreement about the role of corporations in American democracy. Bringing together scholars of history, law, and political science, Corporations and American Democracy provides essential grounding for today’s policy debates.

Corporations and American Democracy

Author: Naomi R. Lamoreaux
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674972287
Release Date: 2017-05-08
Genre: History

Recent Supreme Court decisions in Citizens United and other high-profile cases have sparked disagreement about the role of corporations in American democracy. Bringing together scholars of history, law, and political science, Corporations and American Democracy provides essential grounding for today’s policy debates.

Captured

Author: Sheldon Whitehouse
Publisher: New Press, The
ISBN: 9781620972083
Release Date: 2017-02-21
Genre: Political Science

In Captured, U.S. Senator and former federal prosecutor Sheldon Whitehouse offers an eye-opening take on what corporate influence looks like today from the Senate Floor, adding a first-hand perspective to Jane Mayer’s Dark Money. Americans know something is wrong in their government. Senator Whitehouse combines history, legal scholarship, and personal experiences to provide the first hands-on, comprehensive explanation of what's gone wrong, exposing multiple avenues through which our government has been infiltrated and disabled by corporate powers. Captured reveals an original oversight by the Founders, and shows how and why corporate power has exploited that vulnerability: to strike fear in elected representatives who don’t “get right” by threatening million-dollar "dark money" election attacks (a threat more effective and less expensive than the actual attack); to stack the judiciary—even the Supreme Court—in "business-friendly" ways; to "capture” the administrative agencies meant to regulate corporate behavior; to undermine the civil jury, the Constitution's last bastion for ordinary citizens; and to create a corporate "alternate reality" on public health and safety issues like climate change. Captured shows that in this centuries-long struggle between corporate power and individual liberty, we can and must take our American government back into our own hands.

Gangs of America

Author: Ted Nace
Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers
ISBN: 1576753190
Release Date: 2005
Genre: Business & Economics

The activist and founder of Peachpit Press reveals how the corporation has become the dominant institution in modern life, pointing to the dangers this situation holds for the planet and presenting a blueprint for restoring democracy. Reprint.

We the Corporations How American Businesses Won Their Civil Rights

Author: Adam Winkler
Publisher: Liveright Publishing
ISBN: 9780871403841
Release Date: 2018-02-27
Genre: Law

We the Corporations chronicles the revelatory story of one of the most successful, yet least known, “civil rights movements” in American history. We the Corporations chronicles the astonishing story of one of the most successful yet least well-known “civil rights movements” in American history. Hardly oppressed like women and minorities, business corporations, too, have fought since the nation’s earliest days to gain equal rights under the Constitution—and today have nearly all the same rights as ordinary people. Exposing the historical origins of Citizens United and Hobby Lobby, Adam Winkler explains how those controversial Supreme Court decisions extending free speech and religious liberty to corporations were the capstone of a centuries-long struggle over corporate personhood and constitutional protections for business. Beginning his account in the colonial era, Winkler reveals the profound influence corporations had on the birth of democracy and on the shape of the Constitution itself. Once the Constitution was ratified, corporations quickly sought to gain the rights it guaranteed. The first Supreme Court case on the rights of corporations was decided in 1809, a half-century before the first comparable cases on the rights of African Americans or women. Ever since, corporations have waged a persistent and remarkably fruitful campaign to win an ever-greater share of individual rights. Although corporations never marched on Washington, they employed many of the same strategies of more familiar civil rights struggles: civil disobedience, test cases, and novel legal claims made in a purposeful effort to reshape the law. Indeed, corporations have often been unheralded innovators in constitutional law, and several of the individual rights Americans hold most dear were first secured in lawsuits brought by businesses. Winkler enlivens his narrative with a flair for storytelling and a colorful cast of characters: among others, Daniel Webster, America’s greatest advocate, who argued some of the earliest corporate rights cases on behalf of his business clients; Roger Taney, the reviled Chief Justice, who surprisingly fought to limit protections for corporations—in part to protect slavery; and Roscoe Conkling, a renowned politician who deceived the Supreme Court in a brazen effort to win for corporations the rights added to the Constitution for the freed slaves. Alexander Hamilton, Teddy Roosevelt, Huey Long, Ralph Nader, Louis Brandeis, and even Thurgood Marshall all played starring roles in the story of the corporate rights movement. In this heated political age, nothing can be timelier than Winkler’s tour de force, which shows how America’s most powerful corporations won our most fundamental rights and turned the Constitution into a weapon to impede the regulation of big business.

Corporations are Not People

Author: Jeffrey D. Clements
Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers
ISBN: 9781609941055
Release Date: 2012
Genre: Political Science

Encourages the nullification of the Citizens United decision that makes corporations people and provides a guideline to forming a grassroots effort to obtain a constitutional amendment to reverse the decision.

Who Will Tell The People

Author: William Greider
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781439128749
Release Date: 2010-05-11
Genre: Political Science

Who Will Tell the People is a passionate, eye-opening challenge to American democracy. Here is a tough-minded exploration of why we're in trouble, starting with the basic issues of who gets heard, who gets ignored, and why. Greider shows us the realities of power in Washington today, uncovering the hidden relationships that link politicians with corporations and the rich, and that subvert the needs of ordinary citizens. How do we put meaning back into public life? Greider shares the stories of some citizens who have managed to crack Washington's "Grand Bazaar" of influence peddling as he reveals the structures designed to thwart them. Without naiveté or cynicism, Greider shows us how the system can still be made to work for the people, and delineates the lines of battle in the struggle to save democracy. By showing us the reality of how the political decisions that shape our lives are made, William Greider explains how we can begin to take control once more.

The One Percent of Solution

Author: Gordon Lafer
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 9781501708176
Release Date: 2017-04-01
Genre: Political Science

In the aftermath of the 2010 Citizens United decision, it's become commonplace to note the growing political dominance of a small segment of the economic elite. But what exactly are those members of the elite doing with their newfound influence? The One Percent Solution provides an answer to this question for the first time. Gordon Lafer's book is a comprehensive account of legislation promoted by the nation's biggest corporate lobbies across all fifty state legislatures and encompassing a wide range of labor and economic policies. In an era of growing economic insecurity, it turns out that one of the main reasons life is becoming harder for American workers is a relentless—and concerted—offensive by the country’s best-funded and most powerful political forces: corporate lobbies empowered by the Supreme Court to influence legislative outcomes with an endless supply of cash. These actors have successfully championed hundreds of new laws that lower wages, eliminate paid sick leave, undo the right to sue over job discrimination, and cut essential public services. Lafer shows how corporate strategies have been shaped by twenty-first-century conditions—including globalization, economic decline, and the populism reflected in both the Trump and Sanders campaigns of 2016. Perhaps most important, Lafer shows that the corporate legislative agenda has come to endanger the scope of democracy itself. For anyone who wants to know what to expect from corporate-backed Republican leadership in Washington, D.C., there is no better guide than this record of what the same set of actors has been doing in the state legislatures under its control.

Corporate Dreams

Author: James Hoopes
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
ISBN: 9780813552040
Release Date: 2011-09-30
Genre: Business & Economics

Public trust in corporations plummeted in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, when “Lehman Brothers” and “General Motors” became dirty words for many Americans. In Corporate Dreams, James Hoopes argues that Americans still place too much faith in corporations and, especially, in the idea of “values-based leadership” favored by most CEOs. The danger of corporations, he suggests, lies not just in their economic power, but also in how their confused and undemocratic values are infecting Americans’ visions of good governance. Corporate Dreams proposes that Americans need to radically rethink their relationships with big business and the government. Rather than buying into the corporate notion of “values-based leadership,” we should view corporate leaders with the same healthy suspicion that our democratic political tradition teaches us to view our political leaders. Unfortunately, the trend is moving the other way. Corporate notions of leadership are invading our democratic political culture when it should be the reverse. To diagnose the cause and find a cure for our toxic attachment to corporate models of leadership, Hoopes goes back to the root of the problem, offering a comprehensive history of corporate culture in America, from the Great Depression to today’s Great Recession. Combining a historian’s careful eye with an insider’s perspective on the business world, this provocative volume tracks changes in government economic policy, changes in public attitudes toward big business, and changes in how corporate executives view themselves. Whether examining the rise of Leadership Development programs or recounting JFK’s Pyrrhic victory over U.S. Steel, Hoopes tells a compelling story of how America lost its way, ceding authority to the policies and values of corporate culture. But he also shows us how it’s not too late to return to our democratic ideals—and that it’s not too late to restore the American dream.

America s Battle for Media Democracy

Author: Victor Pickard
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9781107038332
Release Date: 2014-10-27
Genre: History

Drawing from extensive archival research, the book uncovers the American media system's historical roots and normative foundations. It charts the rise and fall of a forgotten media-reform movement to recover alternatives and paths not taken.

Profit with Honor

Author: Daniel Yankelovich
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 9780300127423
Release Date: 2008-10-01
Genre: Business & Economics

This wise and optimistic book examines the rampant scandals that plague American corporations today and shows how companies can reverse the resulting climate of mistrust. By seizing the opportunity to address some of the nation’s—and the world’s—most serious problems, business can strengthen its reputation for integrity and service and advance to a new stage of ethical legitimacy. Daniel Yankelovich, a social scientist and an experienced member of the corporate boardroom, describes the toxic convergence of cultural and business trends that has led inexorably to corporate scandals. Yet he offers reassurance that opportunity exists for positive change. Creative business leaders can advance market capitalism to its next stage of evolution, building upon business norms that simultaneously emphasize the legitimacy of profit making and the importance of the care that companies give to employees, customers, and the larger society.The book asserts that American culture has abandoned its old tradition of enlightened self-interest, of “doing well by doing good.” A narrow legalism has taken over (“I didn’t break the law; therefore I didn’t do anything wrong”). Yankelovich argues that attempts to deal with such flawed ethical norms by means of more laws and regulations cannot succeed. He offers a series of case histories to show how and why stewardship ethics can strengthen individuals, corporations, the nation, and the world economy.

Race Reform and Regulation of the Electoral Process

Author: Guy-Uriel E. Charles
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9781139497206
Release Date: 2011-01-17
Genre: Law

This book offers a critical re-evaluation of three fundamental and interlocking themes in American democracy: the relationship between race and politics, the performance and reform of election systems and the role of courts in regulating the political process. This edited volume features contributions from some of the leading voices in election law and social science. The authors address the recurring questions for American democracy and identify new challenges for the twenty-first century. They not only consider where current policy and scholarship are headed, but also suggest where they ought to go over the next two decades. The book thus provides intellectual guideposts for future scholarship and policy making in American democracy.

Phantom Democracy

Author: C. Boggs
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 9780230120105
Release Date: 2011-08-15
Genre: Political Science

Boggs explores the evolution of concentrated corporate and military power through American history and its impact on our democracy.

The Business of America is Lobbying

Author: Lee Drutman
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780190215538
Release Date: 2015-03-19
Genre: Political Science

Corporate lobbyists are everywhere in Washington. Of the 100 organizations that spend the most on lobbying, 95 represent business. The largest companies now have upwards of 100 lobbyists representing them. How did American businesses become so invested in politics? And what does all their money buy? Drawing on extensive data and original interviews with corporate lobbyists, The Business of America is Lobbying provides a fascinating and detailed picture of what corporations do in Washington, why they do it, and why it matters. Prior to the 1970s, very few corporations had Washington offices. But a wave of new government regulations and declining economic conditions mobilized business leaders. Companies developed new political capacities, and managers soon began to see public policy as an opportunity, not just a threat. Ever since, corporate lobbying has become increasingly more pervasive, more proactive, and more particularistic. Lee Drutman argues that lobbyists drove this development, helping managers to see why politics mattered, and how proactive and aggressive engagement could help companies' bottom lines. All this lobbying doesn't guarantee influence. Politics is a messy and unpredictable bazaar, and it is more competitive than ever. But the growth of lobbying has driven several important changes that make business more powerful. The status quo is harder to dislodge; policy is more complex; and, as Congress increasingly becomes a farm league for K Street, more and more of Washington's policy expertise now resides in the private sector. These and other changes increasingly raise the costs of effective lobbying to a level only businesses can typically afford. Lively and engaging, rigorous and nuanced, The Business of America is Lobbying will change how we think about lobbying-and how we might reform it.

Supercapitalism

Author: Robert B. Reich
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307267857
Release Date: 2007-09-04
Genre: Business & Economics

From one of America's foremost economic and political thinkers comes a vital analysis of our new hypercompetitive and turbo-charged global economy and the effect it is having on American democracy. With his customary wit and insight, Reich shows how widening inequality of income and wealth, heightened job insecurity, and corporate corruption are merely the logical results of a system in which politicians are more beholden to the influence of business lobbyists than to the voters who elected them. Powerful and thought-provoking, Supercapitalism argues that a clear separation of politics and capitalism will foster an enviroment in which both business and government thrive, by putting capitalism in the service of democracy, and not the other way around. From the Trade Paperback edition.