> Volume 6 > Number 31


Jennifer Abbott
Mark Achbar

Michael Moore
Noam Chomski
Milton Friedman
Ray Anderson

Release: 4 Jun. 04

The Corporation


ďAll persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdictions thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.Ē
             ó14th Amendment, U.S. Constitution

Somewhere in between the end of the Civil War and passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 the meaning of the 14th Amendment, a piece of legislation meant to ensure equal rights for newly freed slaves, was stretched to include the rights of the corporation. Looking beyond the fact that an organization built almost completely to make a profit would be most likely to act in any underhanded way to succeed, this particular proof of the elasticity of our Constitution is truly alarming. As some legislators grouse over the possible amendment to outlaw gay marriage, there are others loose ends in the U.S. Code and Constitution that are more pressing.

Imported from Canada, The Corporation tells of the malfeasance that been part and parcel with much of the corporate landscape for decades. The environmental, human rights, and economic offenses usually come with an army of lobbyists, think tanks, and p.r. machines to make sure the corporate leaders remain on top -- as most politicians will tell you, itís awfully hard to fight with the incumbent with the massive war chest. Not only have the majority of these corporations been around far longer than the protest groups, they have the money to outspend anyone in their path.

Surprisingly The Corporation only glazes over anti-corporate success stories like Enron, WorldCom, and Adelphia, conglomerates that were caught in the act during that fleeting Spartan period of Ashcroft JD accomplishment. The meat of the picture, it seems, is in the repetition of statements about the insidious nature of the Almighty CEO and his unfettered pillaging of the world. Where The Corporation ultimately fails, though, is in its unwillingness to cut the lean, those interviews with Noam Chomsky and Michael Moore that add little other than a name-recognition prestige. Clocking in at an excessive 145 minutes, the film feels impressive in intentions but ineffective in production

©2004, David Perry,, 30 July 2004