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The most poignant distillation of corporate personhood appeared in a 2004 article by Molly Morgan and Jan Edwards entitled “Abolish Corporate Personhood.”

“Slavery is the legal fiction that a person is property. Corporate personhood is the legal fiction that property is a person.”

House Democrat Donna Edwards recently introduced an amendment in Congress, stating,

“The ruling reached by the Roberts’ Court overturned decades of legal precedent by allowing corporations unfettered spending in our political campaigns. Another law will not rectify this disastrous decision. A Constitutional Amendment is necessary to undo what this Court has done. Justice Brandeis got it right: ‘We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can’t have both.’ It is time we remove corporate influence from our policies and our politics. We cannot allow corporations to dominate our elections, to do so would be both undemocratic and unfair to ordinary citizens.”

But what has passed under the radar for over a century is a little known mechanism known as an Article V Convention. The Article V Convention was designed into the Constitution as a way to contend with entrenched corruption, like when representatives are bought-and-paid for–or when the Supreme Court overturns a century of legal precedent.

Some facts to consider:

  • The Constitution says when 2/3rds of the States apply for a convention, Congress shall call a convention to propose amendments.
  • James Madison said in 1789 that State applications for a convention will accumulate after being sent to Congress until the 2/3rds threshold is met, at which time an amendatory convention shall be called without delay. Alexander Hamilton stated that calling the Article V Convention is a non-discretionary action by Congress and a “peremptory” obligation, meaning without debate.
  • Until a little over a year ago, there was no central repository or reference containing a complete record of all the State’s Article V applications.
  • Friends of Article V Convention (FOAVC) sponsored an audit of the Congressional record and discovered over 700 applications from all 50 states–500 since 1960. They can be viewed at
  • Since the required number of state’s applications to trigger the convention is 34, and over 700 from all 50 states have been sent to Congress, the legislative branch of the United States Federal Government is currently in breach of the direct, simple and unambiguous language of the Constitution, the Supreme Law of the Land.

In conclusion, the people have been denied their say in helping to right a now nearly capsizing ship-of-state. Checks-and-balances are good things. They are tools. Just as much as top-down corrections have served our nation like in freeing the slaves, or getting women the right to vote, bottom-up checks-and-balances are just as necessary–especially when faced with a recalcitrant Congress unable or unwilling to self-correct.

See for more on this. Ask your Congressman or Senator about this.

Happy the Man

by Horace

Happy the man, and happy he alone,
He who can call today his own:
He who, secure within, can say,
Tomorrow do thy worst, for I have lived today.
Be fair or foul or rain or shine
The joys I have possessed, in spite or fate, are mine.
Not Heaven itself upon the past has power,
But what has been, has been, and I have had my hour.

March 2010

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