The Corporation - Feature Film

The Corporation - Feature Film

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[Music] 150 years ago the business corporation was a relatively insignificant institution today it is all pervasive like the church the monarchy and the Communist Party and other times and places the corporation is today's dominant institution this documentary examines the nature evolution impacts and possible futures of the modern business corporation initially given a
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narrow legal mandate what has allowed today's corporation to achieve such extraordinary power and influence over our lives to begin our inquiry is scandals threatened to trigger a wide debate about the lack of public control of the big corporations over the market of distrust listen 95% some % huge percentage of the business community or honest and reveal
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all their assets got compensation programs that are balanced but there are some bad the media debate about the base of operating principles of the corporate world was quickly reduced to a game of follow-the-leader I still happen to think the United States is the greatest place in the world to invest we have some shake ups that are going on because of a few bad apples [Music] these are not just a bunch of bad apples
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this is just a few bad apples it's not just a few bad apples we've got to get rid of the bad apples you can start with Tyco bad apples we know all about Worldcom Xerox Corporation Anderson Apple obviously bad apples Kmart corporation that fruit cart is getting a little more full I don't think it's just a few apples unfortunately I think this is the worst crisis of confidence in business what's wrong with this picture can't we pick a better metaphor to
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describe the dominant institution of our time through the voices of CEOs whistleblowers brokers gurus and spies insiders and outsiders we present the corporation as a paradox an institution that creates great wealth but causes enormous and often hidden harms I see the cooperation is part of the
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jigsaw in society as a whole which if you remove it the pictures incomplete but equally if it's the only part it's not gonna work a sports team some of us are blocking and tackling some of us are running the ball some of us are throwing the ball but we all have a common purpose which is to succeed as an organization the corporation is like a family unit people in the corporation work together for a common end like the
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telephone system it reaches almost everywhere it's extraordinarily powerful it's pretty hard to avoid and it transforms the lives of people I think on balance for the better the eagle soaring clear-eyed competitive prepared to strike but not a vulture noble visionary majestic that people can believe in and
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be inspired by that creates such a lift that its source I could see that being a good logo for the principle company okay guys enough [ __ ] corporations are artificial creations you might say they're monsters trying to devour as much profit as possible at anyone's expense
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I think of a whale gentle big fish which could swallow you in an instant dr. Frankenstein's creation has overwhelmed and overpowered him as the corporate form has done with us [Music] the word corporate gets attached in almost you know in a pejorative sense -
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and gets married with the word agenda and when here's a lot about the corporate agenda as though it is even as though it is agenda which is trying to take over the world personally I don't use the word corporation I use the word business I will use the word use the word company I'll use the words business community because I think that is a much fairer representation than zeroing in on just
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this word corporation but he is a cooperation it's funny that I've taught in a business school for as long as I have without ever having been asked so so pointedly to say what I think a corporation is it's a group of individuals working together to serve a variety of objectives the principal one of which is earning large growing
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sustained legal returns for the people who own the business the modern corporation has grown out of the Industrial Age the Industrial Age began in 1712 when an Englishman named Thomas Newcomen invented a steam driven pump to pump water out of the English coal mine so the English coal mines could get it more cold to man rather than hauling buckets of water out of the mine it was all about productivity more coal per
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man-hour that was the dawn of the Industrial Age and then it became more steel for me an hour more textiles per man-hour more automobiles per man now and today yes more chips per man-hour more gizmos from an hour the system is basically saying producing more sophisticated products today the dominant role of corporations in our lives is essentially a product of the roughly the past century
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corporations were originally associations of people who were chartered by a state to perform some particular function like a group of people want to build a bridge over the Charles River or something like that there were very few chartered corporations in early United States history and the ones that existed had clear stipulations in their state issued charters how long they could operate the amount of capitalization what they made
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or did or maintained at Turnpike or whatever was in their charter and they didn't do anything else they didn't own or couldn't own another corporation their shareholders were liable and so on in both law and the culture the corporation was considered a subordinate entity that was a gift from the people in order to serve the public good so you have that history and we shouldn't be misled by it it's not as if those are the halcyon days when all corporations served the public trust but
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there's a lot to learn from that the Civil War and the Industrial Revolution created enormous growth in corporations and so there was an explosion of railroads who got large federal subsidies of land banking heavy manufacturing and corporate lawyers a century and a half ago realized they needed more power to operate and wanted to remove some of the constraints that had historically been placed on the
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corporate form the 14th amendment was passed at the end of the Civil War to give equal rights to black people and therefore if said no state can deprive any person of life liberty or property without due process of law and I was intended to prevent the states from taking away life liberty or property from black people as they had done for so much of our history and what happens is the corporation's come into court and corporation lawyers are very clever and
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they say oh you can't deprive a person of life liberty or property we are a person a corporation as a person and Supreme Court goes along with that and what was particularly grotesque about this was that the 14th amendment was passed to protect newly freed slaves so for instance between 1890 and 1910 there were 307 cases brought before the court
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under the 14th amendment 288 of these brought by corporations 19 by African Americans 600,000 people were killed to get rights for people and then with strokes of the pen over the next 30 years judges applied those rights to capital and property while stripping them from people everybody makes mistake once in a while but I just can't be personally
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responsible that's one of the weaknesses of a partnership isn't it SID well maybe you'd better incorporate the store incorporate yes incorporating would give you the big advantage of what you want right now Limited Liability you start with a group of people want to invest their money in a company then these people apply for a charter as a corporation this government issues a charter to that corporation now that
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corporation operates legally as an individual person it is not a group of people it is under the law a legal person Imperial Steel incorporated many of the legal rights of a person it can buy and sell property it can borrow money it can sue in court and be sued it carries on a business Imperial steel along with thousands of other legal
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persons is a part of our daily living it is a member of our society having acquired the legal rights and protections of a person the question arises what kind of person is the corporation corporations were given the rights of immortal persons but then special kinds of persons persons who have no moral conscience these are special kind of persons which are
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designed and by law to be concerned only for their stockholders and not say what are sometimes call their stakeholders like the community or the workforce or whatever the great problem of having corporate citizens is that they aren't like the rest of us as Baron Thurlow in England is supposed to have said they have no soul to save and they have no body to incarcerate I believe the mistake that a lot of people make when they think about corporations is they say they think you
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know corporations are like us General Electric is a kind old man with lots of stories nike young energetic Microsoft aggressive Donald's young outgoing enthusiastic Monsanto immaculately dressed we have feelings they have
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politics they have belief systems they really only have one thing the bottom line how to make as much money as they can in any given quarter that's it of course they make a profit and it's a good thing that's the incentive that makes capitalism work to give us more of the things that we need that's the incentive that other economic systems lack people accuse us of only paying attention to the economic leg because they think that's what a business person's mindset is it's just money and
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it's not so because we as business people know that we need to certainly address the environment but also we we need to be seen as constructive members of society there are companies that that do good for the communities they produce services and goods that are a value to all of us that make our lives better and that's a good thing the problem comes in in the profit motivation here because
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these people there's no such thing as enough and I always counter point out there's no organization on this planet that can neglect its economic foundation even someone you know living under a banyan tree is dependent on support from someone the economic leg has to be addressed by everyone it's not just a business issue but unlike someone under a banyan tree all publicly traded
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corporations have been structured through a series of legal decisions to have a peculiar and disturbing characteristic they are required by law to place the financial interests of their owners above competing interests in fact the corporation is legally bound to put its bottom line ahead of everything else even the public good that's not a law of nature that's a very specific decision in fact the judicial
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position so they're concerned only for the short-term profit of their stockholders who are very highly concentrated to whom to these companies Oh loyalty what does loyalty mean well it turns out that that was a rather naive concept anyway as corporations are always Oh obligation to themselves to get large and to get profitable in doing this it tends to be more profitable to the extent it can make the other people pay the bills for its impact on society
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there's a terrible word that economists use for this called externalities an externality is it it is the effect of a transaction between the two individuals on a third party who has not consented to or played any role in the carrying out of that transaction and there are real problems in that area there is no doubt about it running a business is a tough proposition there are costs to be
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minimized at every turn and at some point the corporation says you know let somebody else deal with that let's let somebody else supply the military power to the Middle East to protect the oil at its source let's let somebody else build the roads that we can drive these automobiles on let's let somebody else have those problems and that is where externalities come from that notion of let somebody else deal with that I got
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all I can handle myself a corporation is an externalizing machine in the same way that a shark is a killing machine each one is designed in a very efficient way to accomplish particular objectives in the achievement of those objectives there isn't any question of malevolence or of will the enterprise has within it and the shark has within those characteristics that enable it to do that for which it was designed so the pressures on the corporation to deliver
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results now and to externalize any cost that this unwary or uncaring public will allow it to externalize to determine the kind of personality that drives the corporation to behave like an externalizing machine we can analyze it like a psychiatrist would a patient we can even formulate a diagnosis on the
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basis of typical case histories of harm it is inflicted on others selected from a universe of corporate activity [Music] well this is the office of the national labor committee here in the garment area of New York City it's a little bit disheveled these are all from different campaigns to make this stuff concrete as
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possible we purchase all of the products from the factories that we're talking about this shirt sells for $14.99 and the women who made the shark I paid three cents Liz Claiborne jackets made in El Salvador the jackets are one hundred and seventy-eight dollars and the workers were paid 74 cents for every jacket they made alpine cost arrows thirty one cents now it's not just Incas it's not just a perilous it's everything we were in Honduras and some workers
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they knew other kind of workmen we did and they approached us these young workers and they said conditions now facture horrible will you please meet with us and we said we would but you can't meet in the developing world you can't walk up to an a factory with your notebook and workers come out you interview them I mean there's goons despise the military please so you do everything in Afghanistan matter we're about to start the meeting and in work three guys very tough looking guys the company had found out about a meeting and sent these spies obviously we didn't have the meeting but these
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young girls were really bright and as they were leaving away from the eyesight of the spies they started to put their hands underneath the table and I put my palm under they put my hand under there and they put into my my hand their pay stubs so we'd know who they were what they were paid and the labels that they made in the factory so we'd know who they work for and I took my hand out after everyone had left and then the palm of my hand was to face a Kathie Lee Gifford but the bottom of it is the interesting part a portion of the proceeds from the sale of this garment
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will be donated to various children's charities it's very touching get sure right here Walmart is telling you if you purchased these pants and Kathie Lee is telling you purchased you're going to help children the problem was that people handed us the label or 13 years of age too many people have family work just me used to fun how many people do support people how do you drill with that sour let's look at it from a different point of view let's look at it from the point
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of view of the the people in Bangladesh who are starving to death the people in China who are starving to death and the only thing that they have to offer to anybody that is worth anything is their low-cost labor and in effect what they are saying to the world is they have this big flag that says come over and hire us we will work for 10 cents an
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hour because 10 cents an hour will buy us the rice that we need not to starve and come and rescue us from our circumstance and so when Nike comes in they are regarded by everybody in the community as an enormous godsend [Music] we went through the garbage dump in the Dominican Republic we always do this kind of stuff we dig around one day we found a big pile of Nikes internal pricing documents Nike assigns a time
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frame Teesha operation they don't talk about minutes they break the time frame into ten thousandth of a second you get to the bottom of all 22 operations to give the workers 6.6 minutes to make the shirt it's 70 cents an hour in the Dominican Republic that's six point six minutes equals eight cents these are Nikes documents that means the way just pump the three tenths of 1% of the retail price this is the reality it's the science of exploitation [Music] [Applause]
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[Music] what happens in the areas where these corporations go in and are successful they soon find that they can't do any more in that country because the wages are too high now and what's that another way of saying well the people are no longer desperate so oK we've used up all the disparate people there they're all plump and healthy and wealthy let's move on to the next desperate a lot and employ them and raise their level up [Music]
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well the whole idea of the export processing zone is that that will be the first step towards this wonderful new development through the investment that's attracted to these countries there will be a trickle-down effect into the communities but because so many countries are now in the game of creating these free trade enclaves they have to keep providing more and more incentives for companies to come to their little D nationalize pocket and that the tax holidays get longer so the
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workers rarely make enough money to buy three meals a day let alone feed their local economy [Music] [Music] [Music] something happened in 1940 which marked the beginning of a new era the era offered the ability to synthesize and create on an unlimited scale new
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chemicals that had never existed before the world and using the magic of research oil companies compete with each other in taking the petroleum molecule apart and rearranging it into well you name it so suddenly it became possible to produce any new chemicals synthetic chemicals the likes of which had never existed before in the world for any purpose and at virtually no cost fabric toothbrushes tires insecticide cosmetics
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weed killers a whole galaxy of things to make a better life on earth rundas if you wanted to go to our chemist and say look I want to have a chemical say a pesticide which will persist throughout the food chain and I don't want it to have to renew it very very often I'd like it to be relatively non-destructive all and then he'd put two benzene molecules on the blackboard and add a chlorine here and a chlorine that and that was DDT when the Eighth Army needed
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[ __ ] civilians to help them out in our occupation they called on native doctors to administer DDT under the supervision of our men to stem a potential typhus epidemic dusting like this goes a long way in checking disease and the labs are them pardon our dust [Music] as the petrochemical era glue and grew warning signs emerged that some of these chemicals could pose hazards the data
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initially were trivial anecdotal but gradually a body of data started accumulating to the extent that we now know that these synthetic chemicals which have permeated our workplace our consumer products our air our water produced cancer and also birth defects and some other toxic effects [Music] furthermore industry has known about
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this police most industries have known about this and have attempted to trivialize these risks [Music] if I take a gun and shoot you that's criminal if I expose you to some chemicals which knowingly are going to kill you what difference is there the difference is that it takes longer to kill you we are now in the midst of a major cancer epidemic and I have no
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doubt and I have documented the basis for this that industry is largely responsible for this overwhelming epidemic of cancer in which one and every two men get cancer in their lifetimes and one in every three women get cancer in their lifetimes [Music] towards the end of 1989 great box of
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documents arrived at my office without any indication where they came from and I opened them and found in it a complete set of Monsanto files particularly a set of files dealing with toxicological testing of cows who've been given rb/gh BST trade name posi lakh is being used in more than a quarter of the dairy herds in the United States according to Monsanto the milk has been drunk by a large portion of the American population since the Food and Drug Administration declared it safe for both cows and
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humans for you and at that time on Santa was saying there's no evidence whatsoever any adverse effects we don't use antibiotics and this clearly showed that they had lied through their teeth [Applause] the files described areas of chronic information in the heart lung kidney spleen also reproductive effects also a whole series of other problems it's the most comprehensive independent assessment of the drug concludes that
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BST results in unnecessary pain suffering and distress for the cows this is not acceptable for a drug designed simply to increase milk production is a silly product we have a the industrial world is awash in milk we're over producing milk we are actually have governments around the world who pay farmers not to produce milk so the first product Monsanto comes up with is a product that produces more of what we don't need of course you'll want to inject pause alike to every
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eligible cow as each cow not treated it's a lost income opportunity but the problem was that use of the artificial hormone caused all kinds of problems for the cows it caused something called mastitis which is a very painful affection of the utters when you milk the cow if the cow has bad mastitis some of the and I don't know how to say this in a you know I hope people are watching at dinnertime but the pus from the infection of the udders ends up in the milk and the somatic cell count they
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call it the bacterial count inside your milk goes up there's a cost to the cows the cows gets sicker when they're injected with rb/gh they're injected with antibiotics we know that people are consuming antibiotics through their food and we know that that's contributing to antibiotic resistant bacteria and diseases and we know we're at a crisis when somebody can go into a hospital and get a staph infection and it can't be cured and they die that's a crisis bad
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for the cow bad for the farmer bad potentially for the consumer the jury is out we see a lot of conflicting evidence about potential health risks and of course as a consumer my belief is why should I take any risk [Music] factory farm cows have not been the only victims of Monsanto products large areas of Vietnam were divorce did by the US military using Monsanto's Agent Orange the toxic herbicide reportedly caused
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over 50,000 birth defects as well as hundreds of thousands of cancers in Vietnamese civilians and soldiers an informer American troops serving in Southeast Asia unlike the Vietnamese victims u.s. Vietnam veterans exposed to Agent Orange were able to sue Monsanto for causing their illnesses Monsanto settled out of court paying eighty million dollars in damages but it never admitted guilt [Music]
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sleeping in a motel in Brewer Maine one night I woke up with terrible hay fever in my eyes were burning and I looked out at the river and there were great mounds of white foam going right down the river and the next morning I got up and I said my god what was that happening last night he said I was just the river and I said what do you mean said well look every night the paper company send the stuff down the river I said what are you talking about and he said don't you understand that's how we get rid of the effluent from the paper mills well I knew at that time I've been in a business I'd sold oil to the paper mills
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I knew all the owners I've been in politics I know the people in the towns I knew not one constituent of the paper mills wanted to have the river polluted and yet here the river was being polluted and it was more or less as if we created a doom machine in our search for wealth and and for prosperity we created saying I was going to destroy us the traders who are involved in the market are not guys who tomorrow fiber when it comes to environmental conditions are gonna be be rattled at
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all their to seeing dollars and they're making money brokers don't stay away from copper because it it violates their religious beliefs or their environmental policies no and you think about it but it's fleeting it really is a fleeting moment it's like yeah yeah yeah well they're totally being polluted down there in Peru but hey this guy needs to buy some copper getting paid a commission to our information that we
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receive does not include anything about the environmental conditions because on until the environmental conditions become a commodity themselves or being traded then obviously we will not have anything to do with that it doesn't come into our psyche at all you know it's so far away and it's you hardly hear anything about I mean keep in mind I mean there are things going on right in our backyard for God's sake we trade live hogs I mean there's so many pigs in the state of Carolina that is polluting
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the rivers but how often do you find out about that [Music] at multinational monitor we put together a list of the top corporate criminals of the 1990s we went back and looked at all of the criminal fines that corporations had paid in the decade Exxon pled guilty in connection to federal criminal charges with the Valdez spill and paid 125 million dollars in criminal fines General Electric was guilty of
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defrauding the federal government and paid nine point five million dollars in criminal fines Chevron was guilty of environmental violations and paid six point five million dollars ASA B she was guilty of antitrust violation and then paid one point eight IBM was guilty of illegal exports and paid his guilty criminal an environmental violation either the drug manufacturer was guilty of antitrust by Wallace who still T million-dollar food and drug regulatory violation Ceres was guilt in Leon
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financial fraud was guilty of antitrust violation paid 500 million dollars in criminal fines again and again we have the problem that whether you obey the law or not isn't matter whether it's cost-effective if the chance of getting caught and the penalty are less than it costs to comply people think of it as
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being just a business decision drawing the metaphor of the early attempts to fly the man going off of a very high cliff in his airplane with the wings flapping and the guys flapping the wings and the wind is in his face in this poor fool thinks he's flying but in fact he's in freefall and he just doesn't know it yet because the ground is so far away but of course the craft is doomed to crash
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that's the way our civilization is the very high cliff represents that virtually unlimited resources we seem to have when we began this journey the craft isn't flying because it's not built according to the laws of aerodynamics and it's subject to the law of gravity our civilization is not flying because it's not built according the loss of aerodynamics for civilizations that would fly and of course the ground is still a long way away but some people have seen that
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ground rushing up sooner than the rest of us have the visionaries have seen it and have told us it's coming there's not a single scientific peer-reviewed paper published in the last 25 years that would contradict this scenario every living system of Earth is in decline every life-support system of Earth is in
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decline and these together constitute the biosphere the biosphere that supports and nurtures all of life and not just our life but perhaps 30 million other species that share this planet with us the typical company of the 20th century extractive wasteful abusive rulinea in all of its processes taking from the earth making wasting sinan its products back to the biosphere waste to a landfill
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I myself was amazed to learn just how much stuff the earth has to produce through our extraction process to produce a dollar of revenue for our company when I learned I was flabbergasted we're leaving a terrible legacy of poison and diminishment of the environment for our grandchildren's grandchildren generations not yet born
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some people have called that at a generational tyranny a form of taxation without representation levied by some generations yet to be it's the wrong thing to do one of the questions that comes up periodically as to what extent could corporation be considered to be psychopathic and if we look at a corporation as a legal person that it
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may not be that difficult to actually draw the transition between psychology in the individual to psychically and a corporation we can go through the characteristics that define this particular disorder one by one and see how they might apply to corporations they would have all the characteristics and in fact in many respects corporation of that sort is that the prototypical psychopath if the dominant institution of our time has been created in the image of a psychopath who bears the moral
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responsibility for its actions can a building have moral opinions can a building have social responsibility if a building can't have social responsibility what doesn't mean to say that a corporation can a corporation is simply a artificial legal structure but the people who are engaged in it whether the stockholders what are the executives in it what are the employees they all have moral responsibilities it's a fair
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assumption that every human being really young beings flesh-and-blood ones not corporations but every flesh-and-blood human being as a moral person got the same genes were more or less the same but error you know our nature the nature of humans allows all kinds of behavior I mean every one of us under some circumstances could be you know the gas chamber attendant Dennis ain't no job in
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my experience with Goodyear has been as frustrating as the CEO job because even though the perception is that you have absolute power to do whatever you want the reality is you don't have that power sometimes if you had really a free hand if you really did what you wanted to do that suits you person sorts a new personal priorities you'd act differently but as I see oh you cannot do that layoffs have become so
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widespread that people tend to believe that CEOs make these decisions without any consideration to the human implications of their decisions it is never a decision that any CEO makes lightly it is a tough decision but it is the consequence of modern capitalism when you look at the corporation just like when you at a slave-owner you want to distinguish
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between the institution and individual so slavery for example or other forms of tyranny are inherently monsters but the individuals participating in them may be the nicest guys you can imagine benevolent friendly nice to the children even nice to their slaves caring about other people I mean as individuals they may be any the as in in their institutional role they're monsters because the institution's monsters and the same is
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true here my wife and I some years ago had a Tahoe a demonstration 25 people arrived they hung a big banner on the top of our house saying murderers they
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danced around outside the public demonstration it wasn't very effective - this is a very rural area - people in the dog and it's not a very big house which I think rather surprised them but then we sat down and talked to them for
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a couple of hours and you know we gave them tea and coffee and they had lunch on that long there's no sorry about the soya anyway for you to see well why didn't you just ask me whether I was 20 minutes they said well the problem is not you you know it's shouts I said no no wait a minute let's talk about what is shell it's made up make people like me in the end what we found in that discussion was all the things that they were worried
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about it I was worried about as well climate you know oppressive regimes human rights the big difference between us was I feel that I actually can make a contribution to this these people were frustrated because they felt they had no nothing to do so an individual CEO let's say may really care about the environment and in fact since they have such extraordinary resources they can even devote some of their resources to that without violating their
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responsibility to be totally human which is why as the moody stewards serve tea to protesters shown Nigeria can flare unrivaled amounts of gas making it one of the world's single worst sources of pollution and all the professor pne's about the environment do not spare Ken sorrow we WA and eight other activists from being hanged for opposing shells environmental practices in the Niger Delta [Music]
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the corporation is not a person it doesn't think people in it think and for them it is legitimate to create Terminator technology so that farmers are not able to save their seeds seeds that will destroy themselves through a suicide gene seeds that are designed to only produce crop in one season you really need to have a brutal mind it's a war against evolution to even think in
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those terms but quite clearly profits are so much higher in their minds the profit motive which drove Pudsey to accomplish so much may bring out the evil my work spans all industry sectors I mean I I virtually have worked for like I'd say twenty five percent of the fortune 500 I've posed as an investment
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banker I've posed as a venture capitalist I set up front companies that are executive recruiting firms essentially I'm a spy I'll locate your employees and I will tell them that I'm calling from Acme recruiting agency and that I've got a job that pays them considerably more than what they're paying would they mind meeting me for an interview and when the executive shows up what he doesn't
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realize is I'm actually debriefing him on behalf of a competitor and that there is no job and at the office that he's at has been rented and and the the picture on my desk of my family is a phony and it's it's all just a big elaborate ruse to glean competitive information from from him I don't feel any guilt it's you know what I mean you have to expect the guys like me are out there we're
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predators [Music] it's about competition it's about market share it's about being aggressive it's about shareholder value what is your stock at today if you're a CEO I mean do you think your your your shareholders really care whether you're Billy Buttercup or not you know do you think that they really they would prefer you to be a nice guy over over having
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money in their pocket I don't think so I think people want money that's the bottom line the fact that most of these companies are run by white men white rich men means that they are out of touch with what the majority of the world is because the majority of this planet are not a bunch of rich white guys they're people of other colors they're the majority women are the majority and the poor in working poor make up the majority of this planet so the decisions
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that they make come from not the reality that exists throughout the world how much is enough you know how much is enough if you are a billionaire would it be okay just to be a half a billionaire would it be okay for your company to make a little less money if it meant when I bought those two airplane tickets for film light and myself to fly to Indonesia I was prepared for him to say okay let's go and I can change it to
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another day and call me on it call my bluff he's a smart guy I mean he's not he's not stupid and so I thought okay get ready for this especially because you know I bought first-class tickets so you know be a comfortable ride at least you know and of course he tells me then on camera I'm playing taken aback by this I can't believe that the guy is the head of the company has never walked through his own factories oh you've gotta go now when we were done filming he calls me up
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a couple weeks later in heels I may have a chance to go there with you to the factories I'm going to the Australian Open to watch some tennis and you know maybe I can get up there or at least you can go there would you like to go to the Australian Open for 21 years I never gave a thought to what we were taking
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from the earth or doing to the earth in the making of our products and then in the summer of 1994 we began to hear questions from our customers we had never heard before what's your company doing for the environment and we didn't have answers the real answer was not very much and it really disturbed many of our people not me so much as them and a group in our research department decided to convene a a task force and bring people from our
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businesses around the world to come together to assess my company's worldwide environmental position to begin to frame answers for those customers they asked me if I would come and speak to that group and give them a kickoff speech to launch this new task force with an environmental vision and I didn't have an environmental vision I did not want to make that speech and at sort of the propitious moment this book landed on my desk it was Paul Hawkens
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book the ecology of Commerce and I began to read the ecology of Commerce a really desperate for inspiration and very quickly into that book I found the phrase the death of birth it was the Oh Wilson's expression for species extinction the death of birth and it was a point of a spear into my chest and I read on and the spear went deeper and it became an epiphany experienced a total change of mindset for myself
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and a change of paradigm can any product be made sustainably well not any and every product can you make landmines sustainably well I don't think so there's a more fundamental question than that about landmines some products will not be made at all unless we can make carpets sustainably you know perhaps we don't have a place in a sustainable world but neither does anybody else
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making products unsustainably one day early in this journey it dawned on me that talk the way I've been running interface is the way of the plunderer plundering something that's not man something that belongs to every creature on earth and I said to myself my goodness the day must come when this is illegal when plundering is not allowed I mean it
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must come so I said to myself my goodness someday people like me will end up in jail I gotta be honest with you when the September 11 situation happened I didn't know the dick and I must say I'd have whenever I know what I want to say this because it's I want to take it lightly it's not a light situation it's a devastating act it was really a bad
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thing even worse things I've seen in my lifetime you know but I will tell you and every trader will tell you who was not in that building and who was buying gold and who owned gold and silver that when it happened the first thing you thought about was well how much is gold up the first thing that came to mind was my god gold must be exploding fortunately for us all our clients are in gold so when he went up they all doubled their money everybody doubled
55:34
their money it was a blessing in disguise devastating crushing hard shattering but on a financial sense for the my clients are in the market they're all made money now I wasn't looking for this type of help but it happened when the u.s. bombed Iraq back in 1991 the price of oil went from $13 to $40 a barrel for Christ's sake now we couldn't wait for the bomb
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to start raining down and said I'm we're saying [Music] we were all excited we wanted to them to really create problems do whatever you have to do set fire to some more oil wells because the price gonna go higher every broker was sanding that there was not a broker that I know of that wasn't excited about that this was a disaster this was something that was you know catastrophe happening bombing wars in
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devastation there is opportunity the pursuit of profit is an old story but there was a time when many things were regarded either as too sacred or too essential for the public good to be considered business opportunities they were protected by tradition and public regulation [Music] we can really begin to take a look at the emergence of the modern age with the
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enclosure movements of the great European Commons in the 1415 and 16th century medieval life was a collectively lived life it was a brutish nasty affair but there was a collective responsibility people belong to the land the land did not belong to people and in this European world people farmed the land in a collective way because they saw it as a Commons it belonged to God and then it was administered by the church the aristocracy and then the local manors as stewards of God's
57:46
creation beginning with Tudor England we began to see a phenomenal emerge and that is the enclosure of the great Commons by parliamentary acts in England and then in Europe and so first we began to take the great land masses of the world which were Commons and shared and we reduced those to private property then we went after the oceans the great oceanic Commons and we created laws and regulations there would allow countries to claim a certain amount of water outside their coastal limits for exploitation in this century we went after the air and we divided it two air
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corridors that could be bought and sold for commercial traffic for airplanes and then of course the rest is history [Music] with deregulation privatization free trade what we're seeing is yet another enclosure and if you like private taking of the Commons one of the things I find very interesting in our current debates is this concept of who creates wealth
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that wealth is only created when it's owned privately what would you call clean water fresh air a safe environment and they not a form of wealth and why does it only become wealth when some entity puts a fence around it and declares a private property well you know that's not wealth creation that's wealth usurp ssin over the centuries we have put more and more things in that public realm and lately just lately in the last let's say three or four decades
59:27
started pulling them out again so firefighters for instance firefighters started as private companies and if you didn't have the medallion of a given fire fire brigade on your house and it was on fire and those firefighters would just you know ride on by because you didn't have a deal well we gradually evolved a public trust for the provision
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of safety on that very specific level this isn't this is important we should not go back from that and and start saying well you know why don't we put that back in the market and see what that does maybe it'll make it more efficient [Music] the privatization does not mean you take a public institution and give it to some nice person it means you take a public institution
01:00:31
and give it to an unaccountable tyranny public institutions have many side benefits for one thing they may purposely run a loss they're not out for profit they may purposely run at a loss because of the side benefits so for example if a public steel industry runs at a loss it's providing cheap steel to other industries maybe that's a good thing public institutions can have a counter cyclic property so that means that they can maintain employment in
01:01:08
periods of recession which increases demand which helps you get out of recession recession throughout the workforce will you make money there are those who intend that one day everything will be owned by somebody and we're not just talking Goods here we're talking human rights human services essential services for life education Public Health social assistance pensions
01:01:37
housing we're also talking about the the the survival of the planet the areas that we can we believe are must be maintained in the Commons or under common control or we will collectively die water and air even in the case of air there's been some progress and here the idea is to say look we can't avoid the dumping of carbon dioxide we can't avoid the dumping of sulfur oxides at least we can't at the moment afford to stop in
01:02:13
that so we're dumping a certain amount of stuff into the environment so we're going to say with the current tonnage of sulfur oxides for example we will say that is the limit and create permits for that amount would give them to the people who've been doing the polluting and now we will permit them to be traded and so now there's a price attached to polluting the environment now wouldn't it be marvelous we have one of those prices for everything it sounds like
01:02:45
you're advocating private ownership of every square inch of the planet absolutely every cubic foot of air water it sounds outlandish to say we want to have the whole universe the whole of the earth owned that doesn't mean I want to have Joe Bloggs owning this square foot but it means that you the interests that are involved in that stream are owned by some group or by some people who have an interest in maintaining it and that you
01:03:16
know that is not such a loonie idea it's in fact the solution to a lot of these problems [Music] imagine a world in which one of the things owned by a corporation was the song happy birthday in fact an AOL Time Warner subsidiary holds the copyright in the past but is demanded over $10,000 to allow you to hear anyone sing this
01:03:53
popular song in a film we didn't pay we prefer to use the money to fly our crew to Boston and Los Angeles to bring you the following story man that takes real teamwork and here's a team of junior spacemen with an out-of-this-world breakfast comparing the marketing of yesteryear to the marketing of today is like comparing a BB gun to a smart bomb it's not the same
01:04:28
as when I was a kid or even when the people who are young adults today were kids [Music] it's much more sophisticated and it's much more pervasive it's not that products themselves are bad or good it's the notion of manipulating children into buying the products in 1998 Western international media Century City and
01:05:01
Lieberman research worldwide conducted a study uh nagging we asked parents to keep a diary for three weeks and to record every time you could imagine every time their child nagged them for a product we asked them to record when where and why this study was not to help parents cope with nagging it was to help
01:05:30
corporations help children nag for their products more effectively anywhere from 20% to 40% of purchases would not have occurred unless the child had nag their parents that is we found for example a quarter of all visits to theme parks wouldn't have curd unless a child nag the parents or at attend visits to places like Chuckie Cheese would not have occurred and any parent would understand that you know when I think of Chuckie Cheese oh my goodness it's noise
01:06:02
and there's so many kids why would I want to spend two hours there but if the child nags enough you're gonna go we saw the same thing with movies with home video with fast food we do have to break through this barrier where that where they do tell us or they say they don't like it when their kids nag well that's just a general attitude that they possess it doesn't mean that they necessarily act on product 100% of the
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time you can manipulate consumers into wanting and therefore buying your products it's a game children are not little adults their minds aren't developed and what's happening is that marketers are playing to their developmental vulnerabilities the advertising that children are exposed to today is honed by psychologists it's enhanced by media technology that nobody
01:07:04
ever thought was possible the more insight you have about the consumer the more creative you'll be in your communication strategies so if that takes a psychologist yeah we want one of those on staff I'm not saying that it's wrong to make things for children you know and I also think it's important to distinguish between psychologists who work on products for children who help help you know toy corporations make toys that are developmentally appropriate I
01:07:35
think that's great that's different from selling the toys directly to the children initiative is huge I think in the u.s. we place about 12 billion dollars of media time so we'll put it on TV we'll put it in print we'll put it up in outdoor what will buy radio time so we're the biggest buyers of advertising time and space in the US and in the world one family cannot combat an industry that spends 12 billion dollars a year trying to get their children they can't
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do it they are tomorrow's adult consumer so start talking with them now build that relationship when they're younger and you've got them as an adult somebody asked me Lucy is that ethical you're essentially manipulating these children well yeah is it ethical I don't know but our role at initiative is to move products and if we know the move products with a certain creative execution place in a certain type of
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media vehicle then we've done our job every institution provides the people who are members of it with a social role to occupy and typically institutions that are vibrant and and have a lot of power will specify that role in in some sense as as a list of virtues it's true for churches for schools for for any institution that has power over over people and shapes them the corporation
01:09:10
likewise it provides us with a list of virtues a kind of social role which is the good consumer like the waters of a mighty ocean people also represent from endless force the understanding of which is of greatest importance to the American Way of life this horse is known as consumer power the goal for corporations is to maximize profit and market share and they also have a goal for their target namely the
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population they have to be turned into completely mindless consumers of goods that they do not want you have to develop were called created ones so you have to create once you have to impose on people what's called a philosophy of futility I have to focus them on the insignificant things of life like fashionable consumption I'm just basically quoting
01:10:12
business literature and it makes perfect sense the ideal is to have individuals who are totally dissociated from one another whose conception of themselves the sense of value is just how many created wants can i satisfy these people are customers because they are willing to trade money for widgets and all the customers take their widgets home to all
01:10:42
parts of the country look at all that money the widget builder has taken in from the sale of his widgets we have huge industries public relations industry is a Monstress industry advertising and so on is which are designed from infancy to try to mold people into this desired pattern [Applause] we saw Tiger Woods on TV with a hat with a Nike logo on it and we figured he probably gets like millions of dollars
01:11:16
just to wear the hat on the press conference and therefore we figured we can do that for someone else and hopefully get money in turns so we can go to school and that's how we came up with being corporately sponsored we made our sponsor announcement on Today Show on June 18 and there college-bound first USA is our spot so we're proud to be working with our sponsors first USA so we were really thrilled to announce first USA as a sponsor thrilled to be
01:11:47
working with first USA and so we get first USA good name in the media and include them in our news stories and then through there they get as much advertising as we can give them they'll be conforming not to the wishes of demanding parents but to the wishes of an image conscious corporation they're not just out there for the money and they're just the I mean they want to work with us and be our friends and that didn't let us help them help us and vice versa we became walking billboards to pay for our college tuition cool senator Dayton kept us at school site and Yahoo
01:12:19
picked us and we were in USA Today when we did a photo shoot for People magazine this is where we stood up on top I stood up here and we smile we smiled and took the picture our parents have war stories and stuff to tell us we have our corporate sponsor story exactly and I have a lot of faith from the corporate world because it's always gonna be there so you may as well have faith in it because if you don't then that's just not good some of the
01:12:52
best creative minds are employed to assure our faith in the corporate world view they seduce us with beguiling illusions designed to divert our minds and manufacture our consent corporations don't advertise products particularly their advertising a way of life a way of thinking you know a story of you know who we are as people and how we got here and what's the source of our so-called
01:13:23
liberty and also called freedom you know so you have decades and decades and decades of propaganda and education teaching us to think in a certain way when applied to the large corporation it's that the corporation was inevitable that it's indispensable that is somehow is remarkably efficient and that it is responsible for progress and a good life [Music]
01:13:56
perception management is a very interesting concept it's basically a methodology which helps us when we work with our clients to go through a very systematic thoughtful process in order to be able to help our clients identify what the resources are that they have what the barriers to their success are and how we can use communications to help them accomplish their objectives [Music] if Michael or Angelica came to me and
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said dad what do you do and why is it important my answer to that question is basically that I help corporations have a voice [Music] and I help corporations share the point of view about how they feel about things [Music] they're selling themselves the selling their domination the selling their rule and the creating an image for themselves as just regular folks down the block hi
01:15:09
how're you all doing today good to see you how are you doing today hi how you doing today we're from Pfizer we're your neighbors you're in the new houses are you in the new houses oh these are some neighbors what did we say hello did we say hello just for a minute so what do you think of the neighborhood now yeah I think it's been getting better over the last 20 years that I've been coming here yeah so I think together you know
01:15:42
working with you and Pfizer and our other partnership will make this a better place okay nice to see you miss Fraser bye there used to be a lot of crime at this subway one night as I was going home I got caught it was almost bug and so we decided to make a change to make this community better we're looking at turn styles that prevent fair beating it used to be that
01:16:16
you could just pop right over so Pfizer in collaboration with the Transit Authority actually purchased these machines this is a talkback box that allows us to speak to the Pfizer guard which is approximately five hundred yards from here now I haven't seen the Pfizer guard today but I'm going to see if I can call him if he's not all have to go away come up hello hello Tom Klein speaking so I'm
01:16:51
sure before he'll were through he'll call back but particularly on the off hours this allows a passenger to call directly to the Pfizer desk for assistance and then the Pfizer guard calls the Transit Police and the transit police respond to any crime situation as a result of all this crime is down in the station it's much safer for our community partners press the other buttons just to be sure Tom speaking hello we'll stop over and see it personally
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[Music] it's tough you know they're putting you know some taxpayer and shareholder money into helping and to can say but that money should be going to the taxpayers to decide what to do and while they're doing those sort of nice things they're also playing a role in lowering taxes for corporations and lowering taxes for wealthy people you know in reconfiguring public policy what we don't see is all that reconfiguring going on we don't see them vacuum out the money vacuum out the
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insides of public processes but we do see the nice facade [Music] when I was researching the takeover public space when I started off I thought okay this is just advertising we've always had advertising it's just more advertising but when I started to understand and what I understand now is
01:18:52
that branding is not advertising its production and very successful corporations the corporation's of the future do not produce products they produce brand meaning the dissemination of the idea of themselves is their act of production and the dissemination of the idea of themselves is an enormous ly invasive project so how do you make a brand idea real well a good place to start is by building a three-dimensional manifestation of your brand for a
01:19:22
company like Disney it goes even further where it's actually building a town celebration Florida currently there are about 5,000 residents who call celebration home and there are about 1300 single-family homes a town center that's a place where people gather that has about four or five restaurants and about a dozen other shops their inspiration their brand image is the all-american family and these sort of bygone American town
01:19:55
[Music] their brand driver his family magic and everything that that company does is in and around those two words if you take that a branded environment such as a Disney World or Disneyland is a logical extension of that brand film animated
01:20:32
film family oriented film is a very logical extension of that as a business though they also know that if they they want to get into other forms of entertainment that does not fit family magic they do not brand it Disney they want to get into adult more serious type fare when it comes to film they branded touchstone the Disney brand speaks of reassurance it speaks of tradition it speaks of quality and you can see that here in
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this community that we've dealt and that's where you see the truly imperialist aspirations of branding which is about building these privatized branded cocoons which maybe you start by shopping in and then you you continue by holidaying in but eventually want why not just move in what happens if we wake up one day and we find out that virtually all of our relationships that are mediated between us and our fellow human beings are commercial we find out
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that virtually every relationship we have is a commercially arbitrated relationship with our fellow human being can civilization survive on that narrower definition of how we interact with each other wow what a dream I could give you a day in the life of a person who might be the target of undercover marketing and I will tell you that some of these things are happening right now around you so you walk out of your building in the morning some city and
01:22:11
you walk by the dorm you say thank you good morning and you notice there's a bunch of boxes at his feet from some online or mail-order retailer and there's a bunch of boxes there with of course a big brand message on it you walk out a lot of people must be ordering from that company what you don't know is that we paid the doorman and keep those empty boxes there you walk out into the street and you hear some people having kind of a loud conversation about a musical act and they're kind of passing the headphones back and forth this is great
01:22:42
hey do you know that that I heard the CD is really hard to find but I heard they sell that story you hear that you register it and you know you might kind of pick up on that maybe later on you'll think hey what the hot act is bang that might be in your head now you get into your office and there's a certain brand of water in their fridge right what is that take it out you drink you slug it to Addis they're not really thinking about wow that's pretty good water who knows maybe someone plays the water there you kind of go out for your lunch
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break you're sitting the park and people are got out there talking in the park and bang all the sudden you see another message by the time you go to bed you've probably received eight or nine different undercover messages people are always thinking well oh I know private place that's when they put stuff in movies well yes kind of I mean that's definitely traditional product placement but real-life private placement is just that placing stuff in movies but the movies actually your life will take a group of attainable but still
01:23:47
aspirational people they're not supermodels they're kind of people just like you they're doing something for us whether they're having a certain kind of drink or they're using a certain laundry term whatever it may be there that they are kind of the roach motel if you will people are gonna come over to them and they're gonna give them this little piece of brand bait could be a sound byte of knowledge or a ritual consumers will get that piece of Roach bait and then they would take it they are pretty cool and then they go out and they spread it to their friends if you want to be critical if you want to go through
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your life like that sure be critical of every single person that walks up to you but if they're showing you something that fits and something that works and something that makes your life better in some way well then who cares we again just say thanks today the job of building this nation geographically is completed there are no new frontiers within our borders so to what new horizons can we look now where are tomorrow's opportunities what's ahead for you for your children
01:24:56
the frontiers of the future are they're in the test tubes and laboratories of the great industries the Jacobi Rd case was one of the great judicial moments in world history and the public was totally unaware it was actually happening as the process was being engaged General Electric and a professor Jack of Rd went to the Patent Office with a little microbe that eats up oil spills
01:25:27
they said they had modified this microbe in the laboratory and therefore it was an invention the Patent Office the US government took a look at this quote invention they said no way the patent statutes don't cover living things this is not an invention turned down then General Electric and dr. Jack Abadi appealed to the u.s. customs court of appeal and to everyone surprised by a three-to-two decision they overrode the Patent Office and they said this microbe
01:25:58
looks more like a detergent or a reagent than a horse or honey bee I laughed because they didn't understand basic biology it looked like a chemical to them had it had an antenna or eyes of wings or legs it would never have crossed their table and been patented then the Patent Office appealed and what the public should realize now is the Patent Office was very clear that you can't patent life my organization provided the main amicus curiae I brief if you allow the patent on this microbe
01:26:29
we argue it means that without any congressional guidance or public discussion corporations will own the blueprints of life when they made the decision we lost by five to four and Chief Justice Warren Berger said sure some of these are big issues but we think this is a small decision seven years later the US Patent Office issued a one-sentence decree you can patent anything in the world that's alive except a full birth human being [Music]
01:27:22
[Music] we've all been hearing about the announcement that we have mapped the
01:28:29
human genome but what the public doesn't know is now there's a great race by genomic companies and biotech companies and life science companies to find the treasure in the map the treasure are the individual genes that make up the blueprint of the human race every time they capture a gene and isolated these biotech companies claim it as intellectual property the breast cancer gene the cystic fibrosis gene it goes on and on and on if this goes unchallenged in the world community within less than ten years a handful of global companies will own
01:29:01
directly or through licensed the actual genes that make up the evolution of our species and they're now beginning to patent the genomes of every other creature on this planet in the age of biology the politics is going to sort out between those who believe life first has intrinsic value and therefore we should choose technologies and commercial venues that honor the intrinsic value and then we're going to have people who believe look life is simple utility its commercial fair and they will line up with the idea that let the marketplace be the ultimate arbiter
01:29:33
of all of the age of biology in a world economy where information is filtered by global media corporations keenly attuned to their powerful advertisers who will defend the public's right to know and what price must be paid to preserve our ability to make informed choices [Music] what Fox television told us was that we were just the people to be the investigators do any stories you want asked tough questions and get answers so we thought this is great this is a dream
01:30:15
job fantastic the very first thing they had us do was not to research stories but to shoot this promo which was the investigators and they had a film crew and a smoke machine and we were silhouetted one of the first stories that Jane came up with was the revelation that most of the milk in the state of Florida and throughout much of the country was adulterated with the effects of bovine growth hormone with Monsanto I didn't realize how effectively a corporation could work to
01:30:50
get something on the marketplace the levels of coordination they had to have they had to get university professors into the fold they had to get experts into the fold they had to get reporters into the fold they had to get the public into the fold and of course the FDA let's not leave them out they had to get the federal regulators convinced that this was a fine and safe product to get it onto the marketplace and they did that they did that very very well pazzo lack is a single most tested new product in history and it's now available to you specifically so you can
01:31:21
increase your profit potential the federal government basically rubber-stamped it before they put it on the marketplace the longest test they did for human toxicity was 90 days on 30 rats and then either Monsanto Miss reported the results to the FDA or the FDA didn't bother to look in depth at Monsanto's own studies the scientists within Health Canada looked very carefully at bovine growth hormone and came to very different conclusions than the Food and Drug Administration in the u.s. did Monsanto's engineered growth
01:31:52
hormone did not comply with safety requirements it could be absorbed by the body and therefore did have implications for human health mysteriously that conclusion was deleted from the final published version of their report I personally was very concerned that there's a very serious problem of secrecy conspiracy and things of that nature we have been pressured and coerced to pass drugs of questionable safety including the rbsp we wrote the story we
01:32:23
had it ready a week beforehand they bought ants farmers in the milk industry say it's since but studies suggest a link to cancer don't miss their special report from the impact that Friday night before the Monday this series was to begin the fax machine spit out a letter from this very high-priced lawyer in New York that Monsanto had hired it contained a lot of things that were just off-the-wall false just demonstrable false but if you didn't know the story and you didn't know how we had gone about producing it would have scared you as a broadcaster
01:32:55
as a manager and they decided that they would pull the story and they would just check it one more time but the bottom line was that there was no factual errors in that story both sides had been heard from both sides it had an opportunity to speak one week later Monsanto sent the second letter and this was even more strongly worded and it said there will be dire consequences for Fox News if the story airs in Florida and this time they Freight they were afraid of being sued and they were also
01:33:27
afraid of losing advertising dollars at all of the stations owned by Rupert Murdoch and he owned more television stations than any other group in America that's 22 television stations that's a lot of advertising dollars for roundup aspartame nutrasweet and other products so we got into a battle and the first deal was the new general manager and his name's Dave and dave is a Salesman and you know a pump man how you doing how you doing called us upstairs to his office and he said what would you say if
01:33:57
I killed this piece what if it never ran and we said well you know we wouldn't be very happy about that and he said well I could kill it you know and we said yes of course you're the manager you could kill it it would never air and he's him in and he's fine in his back and his foot and we couldn't figure out what is this all about and finally he blurted out look would you tell anybody you know I said I'm not gonna lie for you about a week later calls us back to the office and says okay we'd like you to make these changes in fact you will make
01:34:28
these changes we said well let us show you the research that we have that shows that this information you want us to broadcast isn't true to which he replies I don't care about that that's it pardon me and he said though that's what I have lawyers for it just write it the way the lawyers want it written I said you know this is news this is important this is stuff people need to know and I'll never forget he didn't pause a beat and he said we just paid three billion dollars for these television stations will tell you what
01:34:58
the news is the news is what we say it is I said I'm not doing that and he said well he said if you refuse to present this story the way we think it should be presented you'll be fired for insubordination I said I will go to the Federal Communications Commission and I will report that I was fired from my job by you the licensee of these public airwaves because I refused a line of people in the air and it's thank you very much you'll hear from us right away well 24 hours came and went we didn't
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hear a thing and about a week later he calls us back and now we've changed strategies how about if we pay you some money and you just go away and I said how much money because you know when somebody offers to bribe you like that I always want to know if it might be worth it he was gonna offer us the rest of our year's salary if we agreed not to talk about what Monsanto had done to not talk
01:35:59
about the Fox corporate response in suppressing the story and to not talk about the story not talk about BGH again anywhere not take the story to another news organization just zip up I said you mean if I want to go to my daughter's PTA meetings and explain what's in the school milk at the school lunch program I can't know you can never speak about this anywhere and Steve says okay write it up and I'm like what are you talking
01:36:30
about write it up and I didn't say anything and Dave he wrote it up and he fed Ecsta to us a couple days later and he said are you gonna sign and we said now Dave we're not gonna sign that and he said we'll send it back okay said no Dave we're not gonna send that back it was okay we can't buy you out we can't shut you up let's get the story on the air in a way that we can all agree it will go on the air and we
01:37:00
started rewriting and edited with their lawyers well during this eight month review process I say jokingly they did things like for example they wanted to take out the word cancer you don't have to identify what the potential problem is but just say human health implications any criticism of Monsanto or its product they either removed it or minimized it and it was very very clear I would say almost every edit they made to the piece that was the aim and we
01:37:32
changed this and this and this and then that wasn't good enough okay now change this and this and this now change this in this version after version after version 83 times 83 times is unheard of it doesn't happen you shouldn't have to rewrite something 83 times obviously they didn't want to put the thing on the air and they were trying to drive us crazy and get us to quit or wait until the first window in our contract so that they could fire us they in effect announced that they were going to fire us for no cause wow this was a little
01:38:05
much and Steve wrote a letter to the lawyer in Atlanta whose name is Carolyn Forrest the Fox corporate lawyer can I said Ian ha this isn't about being fired for no cause you're firing us because we refused to put on the air something that we knew and demonstrated to be false and misleading that's what this is about and because we put up a fight because we stood up to this big corporation and we set up to your editors and we stood up to your lawyers and we said to you look there ought to be a principle higher than just making money
01:38:35
and she wrote a letter back and said you were right that's exactly what it was you stood up to us on this story and that's why we're letting you go big mistake big mistake that says retaliation you can't retaliate against employees if they're standing up for something that they believe is illegal that they don't want to participate in so that gave us the whistleblower status that we needed in the state of Florida to file a whistleblower claim against our employer two or three years later we
01:39:06
got to trial five weeks of testimony led to a jury verdict of four hundred and twenty five thousand dollars in which the jury determined that the story they pressured us to broadcast the story we resisted telling was in fact false distorted or slanted Fox News appealed the verdict five major news media corporations filed briefs with the court in support of Fox's appeal [Music]
01:39:37
you may recall the chain a Korea former reporter here sued Fox 13 and a whistleblower lawsuit claiming she was fired for refusing to distort her report the appeals court today threw that case out saying the say Korea had no whistleblower claim against the station based on News Distortion Fox 13 vice president and general manager Bob linger says the station has been completely vindicated by the ruling what Fox neglected to report is this Jane sued Fox under Florida's whistleblower statute which protects
01:40:08
those who try to prevent others from breaking the law but her appeal court judges found that falsifying news isn't actually against the law so they deny Jane her whistleblower status overturn the case and withdrew her 425 thousand dollar award Canada and Europe have upheld the ban on our bgh yet it remains hidden in much of the milk supply of the
01:40:35
United States the prospect that two-thirds of the world's population will have no access to fresh drinking water by 2025 has provoked the initial confrontations in a worldwide battle for control over the planet's most basic resource when Bolivia sought to refinance the public water service of its third-largest City the World Bank required that it be privatized which is how the Bechtel corporation of San Francisco gained controlled over all of
01:41:10
Cochabamba s-- water even that which fell from the sky Estel a este contrato pro avian a la gente accumulate lago de la lluvia por lo tanto el agua de la lluvia tambien say puberty Sabah la factura de agua la dama un bel or legal a la empresa para que pueda a pro PR say de su de su propia da de su vivienda Zima Tondo la misma la gente de via Akhtar PO a decision de comer menos la
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guarda lava pagar por servicios bossy hos dejar de mandarava needle escuela no assist a hospital a seeker Arsena propia casa o en todo caso de gente who balada poor m+ una Zenta muy muy baja debería a buscar Tarragona skies [Applause] oh la cocina de la gusta Kanako saleh las casas de los caminos e protester the price this beleaguered country paid
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for world bank loans was the privatization of the state oil industry and it's airline railroad electric and phone companies but the government failed to convince Bolivians that water is a commodity like any other entonces que si BMO's que el gobierno de fin de los interests de la nación Arabic tell
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porque la gente que de agua mo gases la gente Correa Justicia in nobilis prácticamente stubo City Allah Bolivia was determined to defend the corporation's right to charge families living on $2 a day as much as one-quarter of their income for water the greater the popular resistance to the water privatization scheme the more violent became the standoff yogoro
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centenares de dos hombres que a sus dis a decir Tainos perdieron Brazos perdieron piernas K Dharan paralytic okay Darin lesson ah de la cabeza de por vida y murió mr. Rogow dasa [Music] transnational corporations have a long and dark history of condoning tyrannical governments is it narcissism that compels them to seek their reflection in the regimented structures of fascist regimes [Music]
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there was an interesting connection between the rise of fascism in Europe and the consciousness of politically radical people about corporate power because there was a recognition that fascism arose in Europe with the help of enormous corporations mostly it was greatly admired all across the spectrum business loved him investments shot up and certainly when Hitler came in in Germany the same thing
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happened there the investments shot up in Germany he had the work force under control he was getting rid of dangerous left-wing elements investment opportunities were improving there was no problems these are wonderful countries I think one of the greatest untold stories of the 20th century is the collusion between corporations especially in America and Nazi Germany first in terms of how the corporations from America helped to essentially rebuild Germany and support the early
01:45:48
Nazi regime and then when the war broke out figured out a way to keep everything going so General Motors was able to keep Opel going Ford was able to keep their thing going and companies like coca-cola can they couldn't keep the coca-cola going so what they did was they invented Fanta orange for the Germans and that's how coke was able to keep their profits coming in to coca-cola so when you drink Fanta orange that's the Nazi drink that
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was created so that Coke could continue making money while millions of people died when Hitler came to power in 1933 his goal was to dismantle and destroy the Jewish community this was an enterprise so fast that it required the resources of a computer but in 1933 there was no computer what there was was the IBM punch card system which controlled in stored information based upon the holes that were punched in
01:46:49
various rows and columns naturally there was no off-the-shelf software as there is each application was custom designed an engineer had to personally configure it millions of people of all religions and nationalities and characteristics went through the concentration camp system that's an extraordinary traffic management program that required an IBM system in every railroad direction and
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an IBM system in every concentration camp [Music] now this is a typical prisoner card there are little boxes where all the information is to be punched in we compare this information to the co-chief or concentration camps and here you see ostriches one booking bud to Dachau is three now what kinds of prisoners were they they could be a Jehovah's Witness for to a homosexual for three communists for six or a Jew would be eight
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now what was their status one was released two was transferred four was executed five was suicide and six code six Zondervan blank special treatment meant the gas chamber or sometimes a bullet they would punch that number in the material was tabulated the machines were set and of course the punch cards by the millions had to be printed and they were printed exclusively by IBM and the
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profits were recovered just after the war I really do believe that that particular accusation has been fairly discredited as a serious accusation that is the fact that they have used equipment you know that is a fact but how they got it how much cooperation they got and any kind of collusion trying to connect dots that are not connected I think that's the part that is discredited generally you sell
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computers and they're using a variety of ways and you always hope they're using the more positive ways possible if you ever found that they are used in ways that are not positive then you would hope that you stop supporting that but do you always know can you always tell can you always find out IBM would of course say that it had no control over its German subsidiary but here in October 9th of 1941 a letter is being written directly to Thomas J
01:49:35
Watson with all sorts of detail about the activities of the German subsidiary none of these machines were sold they were all leased by IBM and they had to be serviced on site once a month even if that was at a concentration camp such as Dachau Buchenwald this is a typical contract with IBM and the Third Reich which was instituted in nine in 1942 it's not with the Dutch subsidiary it's not what's the German subsidiary it is with the IBM
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corporation in New York I know that story I discussed it more than once with old mr. Watson and I was around at the time I'm not saying that Watson didn't know that the German government used punch cards probably did know after we had very few customers Watson didn't want to do it was not because he thought it was immoral or not but because Watson is a very keen sense of public relations
01:50:38
thought it was risky should not surprise us that corporate allegiance to profits will trump their allegiance to any flag a recent US Treasury Department report revealed that in one week alone 57 US corporations were fined for trading with official enemies of the United States including terrorists tyrants and despotic regimes you can roughly locate any community somewhere along a scale running all the
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way from democracy to despotism this man makes it his job to study these things well for one thing avoid the comfortable idea that the mere form of government can of itself safeguard a nation against despotism for big business despotism was often a useful tool for securing foreign markets and pursuing profits one of the US Marine Corps most highly decorated generals Smedley Darlington Butler by
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his own account helped pacify Mexico for American oil companies Haiti and Cuba for National City Bank Nicaragua for the Brown Brothers brokerage the Dominican Republic for sugar interests Honduras for US fruit companies and China for Standard Oil general Butler services were also in demand in the United States itself in the 1930s as President Franklin Delano Roosevelt sought to relieve the misery of the depression through public enterprise and tougher
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regulations on corporate exploitation and misdeeds the entire country's behind you and the people but the country was not entirely behind the populist president large parts of the corporate elite despised what Roosevelt's New Deal stood for and so in 1934 a group of conspirators sought to involve general Butler in a treasonous plan to
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intimidate the government but the corporate cabal had picked the wrong man Butler was fed up with being what he called a gangster for capitalism which I believe might lead to an attempt to set up a fascist dictatorship the upshot of the whole thing was that I was supposed
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to lead an organization of 500,000 men which would be able to take over the functions of government a congressional committee ultimately found evidence of a plot to overthrow Roosevelt according to Butler the conspiracy included representatives of some of America's top corporations including JP Morgan DuPont and Goodyear Tire as today's chairman of Goodyear Tire knows for corporations to dominate government
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a coup is no longer necessary corporations have gone global and by going global the governments have lost some control of corporations regardless of whether the corporation can be trusted or cannot be trusted governments today do not have over the compilations the power that they had and the leverage that they had 50 or 60 years ago and that's a major change so governments have become powerless compared to where
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they were before capitalism today commands the towering Heights and has displaced politics and politicians as the new high priests and reigning oligarchs of our system so cap and it's principal protagonists and players corporate CEOs have been accorded unusual power and access issues not to deny the significance of government and politicians but these are the new high priests I was invited to
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Washington DC to attend this meeting that was being put together by the National Security Agency called the critical thinking consortium I remember standing there in this room and looking over on one side of the room and we had CIA NSA dia FBI Customs Secret Service and then on the other side of the room we had coca-cola Mobil Oil GTE and Kodak then I remember thinking I am like in
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the epicenter of the intelligence industry right now I mean the line is not just blurring it's just not there anymore and to me it spoke volumes as to how industry and government we're consulting with each other and working with each other as 34 nations of the Western Hemisphere gathered to draft a far-reaching trade agreement one that would lay the groundwork to privatize every resource and service imaginable thousands of people from hundreds of grassroots
01:56:16
organizations joined to oppose it Canada's top business lobbyists and its chief Trade Representative discount the dissent in the streets for them the Americas 800 million citizens speak with one voice truth justice wisdom and all
01:56:39
those things what an extraordinary yes and from the most developed to the least it was it was extraordinary there are now that we see the benefits of trade more and more people want to buy because we do realize it it helps everyone from the poor route to the better off so a lot of these countries are not saying we
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wanna be wrong they want to get on exactly see I'm inside this is all outsides that's that's the way it is so what do you think when you look at all this well it's I mean I think it's I think it's too bad that this has that this has erupted [Music] does there need to be some measure of accountability yes and I think the business community recognizes that but that accountability is in the
01:59:01
marketplace it's with their shareholders it's with the public perception and the public image that they are projecting that's if if if companies don't do what they should be doing they're going to be punished in the marketplace and that's not what any company wants there's a new market these guys and gals out there because government's putting a gun to their head or because they've suddenly read a book about Transcendental
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Meditation and global morality my inner voice as I like a Wendy's bacon mushroom out there there because they understand the market requires them to be there that there's competitive advantage to be there I am listening to your concerns I worry about climate I worry about pollution I do not have all the answers to this but we are prepared to work with you with society with NGOs with governments to address it so you rebuild
02:00:04
the trust so that you come back to a new kind of trust and then the ultimate goal is then to become a corporation of choice he believes it almost half our energy can one day come from renewable sources he's been called the dreamer crank and more recently a project manager for shell I ask myself oftentimes why so many companies
02:00:37
subscribed corporate social responsibility I'm not sure it's because they necessarily want to be responsible in an ultimate way but because they want to be identified and seem to be responsible but who am I to judge Who am I to judge it's better they belong than not belong it's better that they make some public profession then social
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responsibility isn't a deep shift because it's a voluntary tactic a tactic a reaction to a certain market at this point and as the corporation reads the market differently it can go back one day you see Bambi next day you see Godzilla how do you define socially responsible what business is it of the corporation to decide what so socially responsible
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that isn't their expertise that isn't what their stockholders asked them to do so I think they're going out of their range and it certainly is not democratic I don't really care what the chairman of General Motors thinks is an appropriate level of emissions to come off the tailpipe of General Motors automobiles he may have a lot of scientists he may be a very good person but I didn't elect him to anything he doesn't have any power to speak for me these are
02:02:12
decisions that must be made by government and not by corporations you take this to its logical conclusion one would have an image that we are in fact that at this at this the end of the world is nigh and and we are we are all completely brainwashed and there's no space left and and and I don't believe we're there yet and I think it's really important that we don't overstate the case and that we admit that there are cracks and fissures and all of these
02:02:42
corporate structures and sometimes when a corporation is concentrating on one particular project they look the other way and all kinds of interesting things happen in the corner it is the case in every period of history where injustice based on falsehoods based on taking away the right and freedoms of people to live and survive with dignity but eventually when you call a bluff the tables turn
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[Music] ultimately capital puts its foot down somewhere and anywhere it puts its foot down it can be held accountable originally Walmart and Kathie Lee Gifford had said why should we believe you that children work in this factory what we didn't tell him was that when he deals in the center the fixture was on a plane to the United States this is when they Diaz she comes to the United States she's unstoppable Congress heard
02:03:51
testimony today from children who testified they were exported by sweatshops overseas Kathie Lee Gifford apologized 20 days it was most amazing thing I'd seen this powerful celebrity leans over and says Wendy please believe me I didn't know these conditions existed and now that I do I'm going to work with you I'm going to work with these other people and it'll never happen again and that night we signed an agreement with Kathie Lee Gifford as far as Walmart goes in Kathie Lee pretty much everything returned to sweatshop conditions but because this
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was fought out on television for weeks this incident with Kathie Lee Gifford actually took the sweatshop tissue to every single part of the country and so frankly after that there's hardly a single person in this country who doesn't know about child labor or sweatshops or starvation wages [Music] [Music] so what we need to do is to look at the very roots of the legal form that created this beast and we need to think who can hold them accountable they're
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not Craven stone they can be dismantled in fact most states have laws which require that they be dismantled for too long now giant corporations have been allowed to undermine democracy here in the United States and all over the world but today the National Lawyers Guild in 29 other groups and individuals are fighting back we are calling upon state attorney general dan lundgren to comply with California law and to revoke the
02:05:50
corporate charter of the Union Oil Company of California for its repeated and breathe us offenses this is a statue that is well known it has been used it can be used what this will mean is the dissolution of the Union Oil Company of California the sale of its assets under careful court orders to others who will carry on in the public interest [Music] this is nothing more than just a smear campaign this company has been part of California's economy for over a hundred
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years thousands of jobs doesn't mean it's never made any mistakes paid for those mistakes but this demonizing of a company I think I'm in a time warp or something that I I fell asleep when I woke up fifty years ago and we heard that kind of rhetoric well we have a very very broad set of people angry well there is this corporation on the left of the spectrum who who don't produce anything except hot air from its complicity and unspeakable human rights violations overseas against women gays laborers and indigenous peoples to its efforts to subvert u.s. foreign policy
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and deceive the courts the public and its own stockholders Unocal is emblematic of corporate abuse business dearest Burma Army is immoral Unicode cannot do business in drama without supporting that hopeless regime it cannot justify [Music] the curse for me has been the fact that
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in making these you know documentary films I've seen that they actually can impact change so I'm just compelled to you know keep making them yep that's me doing what I do all year long I give big companies a hard time but at Christmastime I like to set aside my differences and reach out to big business like cigarette companies [Applause] I went to Littleton Colorado where the Columbine shooting took place and I didn't know this but when I arrived I
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learned what the primary job is of the parents of the kids who go to Columbine High School the number one job in Littleton Colorado they worked for Lockheed Martin building weapons of mass destruction but they don't see the connect between what they do for a living and what their kids do at school or did at school and so I'm kind of you know all up on my you know high horse you don't thinking about this and I thought you know I said to my wife you
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know we both are you know sons and daughters of Auto Workers in Flint Michigan there is no single one of us back in Flint any of us including us who ever stopped to think this thing we do for a living the building of automobiles is probably the single biggest reason why the polar ice caps are going to melt and end that civilization as we know it there's no connect between I'm just an assembler on an assembly line building a
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car which is good for people in society moves them around but never stopped to think about the larger picture and the larger responsibility of what we're doing ultimately we have to as individuals accept responsibility for our collective action and and the larger harm that it causes you know in our world today the first of two historic town hall meetings will get underway in Arcadia California sixty-one percent of our Kayden's voted in favor of publicly
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discussing whether democracy is even possible when large corporations wield so much wealth and power under law they also voted to form a committee to ensure democratic control over corporations in Arcata corporations are not accountable to the democratic process that's what this is about I don't want to make decisions about everything that goes on in their corporation but I do have a strong belief that they need to be held accountable to us if we don't like certain product if you don't like a Pepsi Cola or BankAmerica
02:10:14
well if you don't like what they do don't use them that's the way I see the you know people's power is you have a lot more money than me you have more votes than I do if we use the model of boycott and voting with their dollars that's that's an undemocratic situation what are we afraid of I mean all the business is gonna leave our kata I don't think so and if they did we'd deal with it or we figure it out or we do something different we're creative people if you think it stops making a
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decision where to buy your stuff today how tough do you think it is when there's only one provider and it's the state and by the way you don't get to have this little democracy forum in those communities either people that say they fear their government I really hope that they understand that they're allowed to participate in their government they're not allowed to participate in anything that corporations do so don't fear the government help it be the government that you won't fear if this made people on the country would do this instead of watching Super Bowl Sunday our nation
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would be controlled by the people not by the corporation no more chain restaurants in Arcata after all [Music] [Music] over the past decade we have been gaining ground and when I say we I mean ordinary people committed to the welfare of all of humanity all people irrespective of gender and class and race and religion all species on the planet we managed to take the biggest
02:11:59
government and one of the largest chemical companies to court on the case of neem and win a case against them WR race in the US government's patent our name was revoked by a case we brought along with the Greens of European Parliament and the International organic agriculture movement we won because we work together [Music] we have overturned nearly 99% of the basmati patent of rice Tech again
02:12:31
because we worked as a worldwide coalition old women in Texas scientists in India activists sitting in Vancouver little Basma the action group we stopped the third world being viewed as the pirate and we showed the corporation's were the pirate look how little it took for Gandhi to work against the salt loss of the British where the British decided the way they would make their armies and police forces bigger it's just tax the sort and all the Gandhi did was walk to
02:13:09
the beach pick up the salt and say Nature gives it for free we need it we've always made it we will violate your laws we will continue to make salt we've had a similar commitment for the last decade in India let any law that makes it illegal to save seed is a lord not worth following we will violate it because saving seed is a duty to the earth and to future generations we thought it would really be symbolic it is more than symbolic it
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is becoming a survival option farmers who grow their own seeds save their own seeds don't buy pesticides have three fold more incomes than farmers who are locked into the chemical trade but depending on Monsanto and Cargill we have managed to create alternatives that work for people there are many tools for for bringing back community but the importance is not the tools I mean there's litigation there's legislation there's direct action there's education boycotts social
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investment there's many many ways to to address issues of corporate power but in the final analysis what's really important is the vision you have to have a better story do I know you well enough to call you fellow plunderers there is not an industrial company on earth not an institution of any kind not man not yours not anyone's that is sustainable I stand convicted by me myself alone not
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by anyone else it's a plunder of the earth but not by our civilizations definition by our civilizations definition I'm a captain of industry and as a many a kind of modern-day hero but really really the first Industrial Revolution is flawed it is not working it is unsustainable it is the mistake and we must move on to another and
02:15:18
better Industrial Revolution and get it right this time when I think of what could be now visualize an organization of people committed to a purpose and the purpose is doing no harm as the company that has severed the umbilical cord to earth for its raw materials taking raw materials that have already been extracted and
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using them over and over again driving that process with renewable energy it is our plan it remains our plan to climb Mount sustainability that mountain that's higher than Everest infinitely higher than Everest far more difficult to scale that point at the top symbolizing zero footprint so we gotta undo a lot of things in order to be smart enough to do this
02:16:29
really dangerous and risky and difficult work you know the best way that we possibly can and that means people coming together and learning on a hopeful whole lot of stuff that we just don't know that it's been driven out of the culture driven out of the society driven out of our minds that to me is the most exciting thing that is happening it's happening all over the world in cierto momento de la luciano me el momento mescal mean aunty L ahead Zito's cuartel o la policia tambien mo
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salió de su de su cuartel los congresista de Cepeda Ciaran l go burn adores oculto say mushi or go burn adore no había autoridades a logical Toni Dodd legitimate heir a Cuervo estaba un Cavill dokay estaba en la plaza y que toma ballot Ecco nays in grandes Azam bless ya final decidió sobre la go Yau a la gente joven se nos picos de mucho
02:17:29
tiempo podemos seborrhea podemos hacer knows necessarily democracia emissary de una empresa what other person hold liquor from polymers técnicos kampala machine see arrows and pull Emma's lead Alice the compromise and initiative estamos Camden Town porque si the most ramos que la gente en SI de trabajo Dora like a poder de suopo lemons for the most star and a squirt as
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they paid heed the católica de casa privately so to a karaoke 7 do Java karaoke style manos de las corporaciones vuelven a las manos de la población yummy AI Apprendi una elección muy importante que unos Padres confía en la capacidad de Puebla a slogan que siempre y OB le petit dhola's la smart way bro you need Ohama Sara Ben C dou Y ver a so
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pareve queda muy Grande's [Music] sometimes it surprises me how effective you can actually be after we beat the gap I walk past these gap stores and I look at them I think oh my god there's like 2,000 engine stores across the country look at all that concrete look at the glass look at all the staff
02:19:17
people look at all the clothing look at that power you can still reach these companies you can still have an effect okay Seymour ganado tanga no no pequeñas Battaglia's mundo pero yo creo que la gente para no la Gazza ESO SI yo veo el futuro represent a photo para nuestros hijos mu pero con viola capacidad de
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selección la capacidad de indignation Anakapalli under a hint we can change the government that's the only way we're gonna redesign rethink reconstitute what capital and property can do 15 corporations would like to control the conditions of our life and millions of people are saying not only do we not need you we can do it better we are going to create systems that nourish the earth and nourish human beings and these
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are not marginal experiments they are the mainstay of large numbers of communities across the world that is where the future lies you know I've often thought it's very ironic that I'm able to do all this and yet what am I on I'm on networks I'm distributed by studios that are owned by large corporate entities now why would they put me out there when I am opposed to everything that they stand for and I spend my time on their dime opposing what they believe in okay well it's because they don't
02:20:52
believe in anything they put me on there because they know that there's millions of people that want to see my film or watch the TV show and so they're gonna make money and I've been able to get my stuff out there because I'm driving my truck through this incredible flaw in capitalism the greed flaw the thing that says the rich man will sell you the rope to hang himself with if he thinks he can make a buck off it along the rope I hope I'm part of the rope and they also believe that when people watch my stuff or maybe watch this film or
02:21:23
whatever they think that you know well you know what they'll watch this and they won't do anything you know because we've done such a good job of numbing their minds and dumbing them down you know they'll never affect they know people aren't going to leave the couch and go and do something political they're convinced of that I'm convinced of the opposite I'm convinced that a few people are gonna leave this movie theater or get up off the couch and go and do something anything to get this world back in our hands
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