Hartmann: Corporate Personhood for Dummies

Hartmann: Corporate Personhood for Dummies
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eksLIP0Tmkc?rel=0&w=480&h=320]

Your Take, My Take is the segment of the show when we answer your questions, comments, criticisms and opinions here on “The Big Picture.” Since the seventh century – the 600s – when British common law was first codified, there have always been two types of “persons.” “Natural Persons” are human beings like you and me. “Artificial persons” are governments, churches, and what over the years has evolved into the modern corporation. Both have a form of “personhood” so both can pay taxes, own land, and be parties to lawsuits. But for 1500 years, everybody understood that there were different rules for natural persons and artificial persons. The constitution, for example, starts out with the words “We The People,” a clear reference to natural – not artifical – persons. And it pretty much stood exclusively for natural persons – human beings, until the late 1800s.

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