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What’s Being Fined? Not Corporate Crime

What’s Being Fined? Not Corporate Crime

Russell Mokhiber

One way to check on government action against corporate crime is to type into Google News the word “fined.”

Who is getting fined for wrongdoing?

Five years or so ago, if you did this, you would get a smattering of corporate criminals on the first page.

But let’s look and see what we get today.

First story up out of the NBA — Paul George, Marcus Morris fined for Saturday’s altercation.

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Corporate lawyers are extremely well paid to help ensure that corporate antics go right up to the lines without crossing them. However, the lines are still often crossed. Revolving door regulators rarely, if ever, betray the money-making side of their careers. Now, if we could only clone the Elizabeth Warrens and Brooksley Borns of this world…

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I think it’s much worse than what Mr. Mokhiber describes. For one thing, just as it’s easier to own a bank (and thereby print money out of thin air) than to rob one; it’s easier to alter law so that the issue of breaking it is no longer relevant.

Take treaties like the TPP and TIPP: These legal twists on responsibility, liability, and basic environmental and labor laws are designed to make law virtually obsolete. If corporations can enshrine the quest for profits above all other would-be legal actions, and if private corporate tribunals get to decide these cases, then nothing remotely akin to established laws will exist. There will be no legal imperative to protect the commons, civil liberties, environmental protections, or labor rights.

THAT is the goal. And it constitutes an end-run around former wise, hard-won, and established laws, entirely! Currently the Plutocrats are advancing this agenda with Obama as much its poster-child as was Clinton for NAFTA.