Friday, 2 September 2011

Corporations ARE people

I was browsing the Democrat and Republican websites today, and came across some anti-Romney t-shirt merchandise on the former. The gear understandably tries to make political capital out of Romney's wealth, corporate background, and pro-business views. However, the first thing I find odd is that the Democrat homepage is already touting merchandise attacking someone who may only become the potential nomination. It looks a little desperate and like the party is jumping the gun. However, I suspect it's part of a wider scheme to portray all the Republican candidates as being out-of-touch with ordinary people and only looking out for business.

I question though, whether this tactic can be successful given how Obama is looking increasingly like a failure on the economy. Last month 0 jobs were created - that's the first time that's happened since 1945. The Democrats are playing the wrong game if they're trying to make issues out of the economy, taxation, growth, and jobs, because Obama has performed so abysmally on the issue. It's so ridiculously easy for Republicans to attack healthcare reform, new regulations, and the failure of the stimulus packages that there's no way the Democrats can win this game. All it does it highlight that the GOP has a different strategy, and one that may work.

The second thing to point out is more technical. One of the shirts highlights the quote from Romney: "Corporations are people, my friend." Apparently the designer is expecting everyone to gasp at this statement, collapse, and upon recovering, determine that Romney must be a dangerous pro-corporate mentalist. Untrue. Romney's statement is factually correct. The 1886 court case of Santa Clara County v Southern Pacific Railroad established the very odd fact that corporations are people, for the purposes of being afforded rights under the Fourteenth Amendment. It's an odd fact, and it's an issue which it would be sensible to debate, but attacking someone for stating a fact is a very odd tactic. It seems that the Democrats are just counting on how little-known the court case is.

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