read blog on source: http://lawsjourneytolife.blogspot.com/2013/06/day-16-corporations-and-human-rights.html
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was signed, and adopted by the United Nations Assembly in 1948. Looking at history of humanity it’s safe to say that these documents really do represent a revolution in human development, and evolution – because this charter do suggest that human beings are to be treated with care, and given a life of fulfillment. Obviously – as can be seen – none of the provisions of the charter have been honored in reality – the words that expressed a care for humanity as a whole has remained nothing but words – nothing but hope, and good natured intentions. It’s fascinating that it’s so hard for the leaders of our world to agree upon setting our differences aside and instead focusing on how to create a world that is best for everyone – yet history have proved over, and over again, that regardless of how many attempts that have been made to corporate, and place the best of humanity before the self-interest of the individual – it has utterly failed.
In this blog I am going to take a closer look at one of the reasons as to why the Universal Declaration of Human Rights have become nothing but empty words – standing as a monument of the failure of humanity to come to a equal agreement on how we should care for each other, and our world – our common home.
This is taken from Wikipedia:
Multinational companies play an increasingly large role in the world, and have been responsible for numerous human rights abuses. Although the legal and moral environment surrounding the actions of governments is reasonably well developed, that surrounding multinational companies is both controversial and ill-defined. Multinational companies' primary responsibility is to their shareholders, not to those affected by their actions. Such companies may be larger than the economies of some of the states within which they operate, and can wield significant economic and political power. No international treaties exist to specifically cover the behavior of companies with regard to human rights, and national legislation is very variable. Jean Ziegler, Special Rapporteur of the UN Commission on Human Rights on the right to food stated in a report in 2003:
[T]he growing power of transnational corporations and their extension of power through privatization, deregulation and the rolling back of the State also mean that it is now time to develop binding legal norms that hold corporations to human rights standards and circumscribe potential abuses of their position of power.
In August 2003 the Human Rights Commission's Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights produced draft Norms on the responsibilities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises with regard to human rights. These were considered by the Human Rights Commission in 2004, but have no binding status on corporations and are not monitored.
What is the essence of a corporation? In the economic literature it’s given a fascinating definition – it’s called a “nexus of contracts” – meaning that a corporation is in-fact a entity consisting of numerous parties that have joined forces to support their own personal self-interest – and within this they have agreed to follow the forms of a standard-contract – this contract being the corporate law that exist in similar forms in countries all over the world.
The essence of this standard contract as the corporate law is that parties/individuals invest their money into a legal-entity – these people/parties then become the so called shareholders– and they are now in a contractual relationship with each-other – and the clauses of that contract consist of the corporate law.
According to the corporate law – shareholders are not meant to run their company by themselves – but they are to elect a board of directors, and also a chief executive officer (CEO) – these will now become hired by the corporation and be the henchmen, and forefront of the corporation in the world. These henchmen get their specific code of conduct from the contract that is the corporate law – and their main objective is in almost all cases – to ensure that the shareholders will profit on their investment – in other words – they are to make lots of money.
So – here we have to two first parties, and personal self-interests that have been managed through a contract; the management of the company – and then the shareholders of the company. These are the most prominent interests.
Then on top of these basic and fundamental interests of the corporation we have the banks, as the creditor of the corporation – and the interest of the creditor is to make sure that he receives money, and surety for the loan that’s been given; a.k.a. being able to profit on the investment.
More over we have the contractors to the specific corporation – for example – if a corporation has it’s specific field in the construction of new houses – then this corporation must align contractors, and suppliers to it’s business – in order to get the necessary skill, and raw-material in order to be able to build the new houses. The interest, and desire of these contractors, and suppliers is to get paid on the work that they commit to, and also to hopefully be hired again for a new project at a later stage.
What I am trying to show with this walkthrough of the various parts that a corporation consists of – is that it’s a huge spider-web of intermingled, and intertwined interests of various parties – but the one thing that unites them in their movement is that – they all want to have MONEY – they all want to make a profit – and they all benefit when the corporation benefit. Thus – the corporation is in-fact nothing but a faceless, and anonymous mass of people that are hidden behind a legal-entity – that have together formed a contract to together make as much money as is possible. Because remember – that the interests of the corporation can’t be held accountable for the crimes that the corporation commit; they are instead protected behind the mask, and entity of the corporation.
Now – this doesn’t work very well with Universal Declaration of Human Rights; the reason being that profit is never free but always comes at a price – and this price is paid daily by earth, and human beings around the world – that have been abused, and used in order for corporations to be able to make more money. Obviously this is what the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is supposed to stop – but this hasn’t happened – and instead the form of the corporation as a contract between people to make money – allows individual parties to hide, and become anonymous, and differentiate themselves from the complete destruction that the corporation creates – and instead say that “it’s the corporation – it’s not me! I am just a shareholder!” – or “I am just the CEO, I just do my job! It’s in my work description to make money!”
Thus – it’s fascinating – that we’ve created a way in this world for people to come together and without any legal responsibility make money by any means necessary – I mean – why is it that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights doesn’t recognize that in essence – a corporation is merely a group of human-beings that should be held accountable for their actions – and that this so-called legal entity as the corporation is nothing but smokes, and mirrors that simply hides the real driving force of the corporation as several interests coming together to profit?
This is why the Universal Declaration of Human Rights doesn’t function – and will not function in this world – because it’s not about demanding actual accountability – it’s not about demanding human-beings to act with integrity, and respect – it’s about politics – and where politics enter the picture so does the incessant drive to earn more money – greed – and as such it’s obvious that this faceless entity as the corporation has had a say in creating the current definition and understanding of the Universal Declaration of the Human Rights – in order to protect all it’s various individual parts interests.
Within looking at this point – it’s also fascinating to see how the corporation is really a baby that has been breed out of so-called normal, and average human-beings pockets – because when we invest in a stock – we invest in a stock from the perspective of wanting to gain profit – and within that we are the anonymous investor that can’ be seen, and can’t be heard – yet still is a silent driving force behind the corporation – that acts as the henchmen of the stockholder – so that there is a return on the investment – so really – we can’t blame the acts of corporations on anything but ourselves – and by ourselves I mean us as the normal, and average high-level living standard human-being – because we’ve invested in and brought this monster to life – and made it our scapegoat, and our cover-up so that we can commit crimes against human rights and get away with it.
A business attorney called Robert Hinkey has since 10 years back been propagating, and showing that there is a simple solution towards making sure that the corporation starts to care for, and consider human-beings, and human rights – and that is through changing the law of the corporation – to instead of having it’s primary purpose to create profit – to instead having the purpose of creating profit but within the limits that nobody must be harmed.
That is according to me a cool solution as to how to make sure that the faceless entity of the corporation get’s a face that we can see and make sure does not overstep any boundaries. And to enforce this point that chief executive officer, as well as the board of directors can be held accountable if the boundaries are not respected – I mean – this is already currently done but in relation to points that involve wasting the corporations money, or not following the rules of the stock-market effectively – so why not also insist on rules that are created to serve the betterment of humanity?
The simple point to understand is that there is SO MUCH we can do to change what is currently happening on earth – the question we should ask ourselves is WHY DON’T WE? How come that intellectual revolutionaries such as Noam Chomsky, and Chris Hedges are able to write books that specifically outlines, and shows the corrupt nature of our current world-system – yet still NOTHING happens? I mean – it’s fascinating that so little is happening while the problems are very clearly shown – it’s like humanity as a whole do not have the ability to ACT on words – but merely to write down words, read words, and consider words – but not LIVE WORDS!
And that is the problem with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – it’s a cool document yes – but – it’s not been lived! It’s remained as a gesture, and a hope for a better world – but not a actual, and directive push to create a world that is best for all in every way possible.
Thus – the first point the must be established by humanity if anything is ever going to happen is to realize the importance of action – and that words that are not taken into living practical application are worthless – they mean nothing – and will merely remain as a vague hope on a paper that nobody really cares about.
So – the solution is to first – active ourselves as humanity – and stand up within ourselves, and our worlds and make the decision to walk a change – and then – the second point is to change the corporate law – to make corporations responsible for their decisions, and to enable holding CEO’s and board of directors liable for their corporations crimes against human rights – thus making sure that the corporation does not function as a veil to hide from responsibility.
In creating the corporate law – and consequently the corporation – to consider and adhere to human rights – and enable to hold leading key figures in the corporation responsible for any crimes against life, and humanity that the corporation commits – we’re able to utilize the organizational structure of the corporation as a way to product profit for humanity as a whole.
As such we can develop, and experience a life wherein production, and profit-creation is walked within considerations of what is best for humanity, and earth – and thus produce a life for human beings that are fulfilling, and without stress, pressure, and wage-slavery. We will have an employer as the corporation that do care about their employees – and that do care about honoring human rights, and producing the most effective, and effective products possible.
The simple point that must change is the starting point – we must wider our horizons and realize that Life can never be fulfilling when only profit is considered – life – humanity – and earth must always be considered if not it will lead us to certain destruction, and a life of competition, and strives – that is not necessary!