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Dangerous rights in wrong hand

Most law systems are giving to corporations two rights that should be reserved to humans: the right to be greedy (to own property) and the right to have secrets (privacy).

These two rights are indeed human rights, but they shouldn’t be a right for corporations. Why?

One reason is that corporations don’t need these rights. The humans who interact with a corporation (employees, customers, providers, …) do need these rights, but not the corporation itself. A corporation does not need to get rewarded in order to remain motivated. The “motivation” of a corporation results from its mission statement, which bundles the collective motivation of the individual humans who support or own the corporation. A corporation does not need to have secrets. There are many examples of corporations (basically all non-profit organizations) that work well without having any secrets. An edge case are security issues, we treat these in a separate article. See About whistleblowing.

Another reason is that corporations can potentially misuse these rights against humans. They are immortal and ruthless. Letting them function on their own must inevitably lead to unwanted results. Corporations must remain under human control. We must not give them any chance to get out of our control.

Let us Subdue the greedy giants!

Related quotes

“We have constructed a system we can’t control. It imposes itself on us, and we become its slaves and victims. We have created a society in which the rich become richer and the poor become poorer, and in which we are so caught up in our own immediate problems that we cannot afford to be aware of what is going on with the rest of the human family or our planet Earth.” – Thích Nhất Hạnh via Realize You are the Earth:

“The tech industry’s largest companies (…) stifle the flow of new ideas. [We need] a broader re-evaluation about the tech industry and government regulation. (…) [We] see markets –search, social networks, online advertising, e-commerce– not behaving according to free-market theory. Monopoly or oligopoly seems to be the order of the day.” – Paul Romer via Paul Romer: Once tech’s favorite economist, now a thorn in its side:

“We all have a responsibility to educate our human brothers and sisters. Inner values are the ultimate source of happiness, not money and weapons, whether you’re talking about individuals or the whole of humanity.” – Dalai Lama, via Twitter