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Subject: Corporate Power in the '96 Presidential Campaign
Date: 7 Mar 1996 02:21:32 GMT
Organization: rat haus reality press
Lines: 219
Distribution: usa

Friday, March 8, 2:30 PM,
The Law School,
University of Oregon, Eugene
(during the Environmental Law Conference)

for further information:
* Richard Grossman (508) 487-3151
* Ward Morehouse (212) 972-9877 or (914) 271-6590
* Nila Jebousek (503) 741-6215

Corporate Power in the '96 Presidential Campaign

          Richard Grossman and Ward Morehouse of the Program on Corporations, Law & Democracy (POCLAD) will offer a briefing for the press on the big surprise issue of the '96 presidential campaign: corporate destruction of jobs, the environment, and our democracy. This briefing will take place during the 1996 Public Interest Environmental Law Conference in Eugene (March 7-10), where Grossman will be a featured after-dinner keynote speaker on Saturday, and where POCLAD has organized nine workshops on understanding corporate history and law, revoking corporate charters, and ending judge-made law such as "corporate personhood" and "managerial prerogative."

          "The Republican candidates, of all people, have finally gotten the national press to acknowledge that corporate wealth and power are causing serious problems," said Morehouse. "The lead editorial in the Sunday, February 25 New York Times, entitled 'Corporations Under Fire,' Business Week's editorial for February 19 entitled 'The Backlash Against Business,' Newsweek's February 26 cover story on 'The Corporate Killers' and a flood of similar commentaries report that big corporations are hurting large numbers of middle and working class people. The Times even felt the need to remind corporate leaders 'that the United States is a democracy, not just an economy.'"

          "We and our fellow panelists at this 14th annual Public Interest Environmental Law Conference will discuss how, in a democracy, we can act as we the people really are in charge," Morehouse continued. "After all, Weyerhaeuser Corporation, International Paper Corporation, American Barrick Corporation, Hyundai Corporation, Intel Corporation, Boise Cascade Corporation, and all the others are chartered under our authority."

          Carolyn Chute, Maine novelist and a founder of the 2nd Maine Militia - "The Wicked Good Militia" - has noted that popular revolts springing up against corporate rule in Maine and elsewhere are not about left or right, but up and down. "The corporations are on top, and working people are on the bottom.

          Our goal is to put the people on top where they should be in a democracy," she said.

          POCLAD has been working with the 2nd Maine Militia, Democracy Unlimited of Wisconsin, and citizen groups in other states to help people learn that in the past, the people of each state - through their legislators - defined what corporations may or may not do. "This is a hidden history," said Grossman.

          "But it is quite clear that earlier generations understood that it was illegitimate for corporate fictions to be writing our laws, electing our officials, engaging in job blackmail, and dominating debate on public policy.

          It's time we the people began amending corporate charters and our state corporation codes, and redefining our corporations in basic ways. And we can begin revoking charters of corporations which have already caused massive harm to our democratic institutions, to our communities, to public health and the environment."

          Attached is the schedule of mini-courses on corporations and the law which POCLAD is presenting at the Eugene Environmental Law Conference. Members of the press are welcome to attend. POCLAD was formed in 1994 by Richard

Grossman and Ward Morehouse. They and other POCLAD panelists will be available for individual interviews throughout the conference.

[*]see "It's the economy, stupid"-theme of the 1992 Clinton presidential campaign.

       The Program on Corporations, Law & Democracy
       211.5 Bradford Street
       Provincetown, MA 02657

Richard Grossman & Ward Morehouse, co-directors




at the


University of Oregon Law School, Eugene, Oregon, March 7-10, 1996


Seminars on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday will take place in Law School Room 125. The Sunday morning Strategy Session will be at Gilbert Hall Room 101.

Thursday, March 7

I. [3 - 4:15 pm] Student Organizing Inside College and University Corporations: the natures and roles of educational institutions (non-profit corporations) in a democracy; the roles of students within colleges and universities, and in national political and social movements.

Rob Inerfeld, Program on Corporations, Law & Democracy, New York; Ellen Huffaker, Oregon Student Public Interest Research Group (OSPIRG); Mustafa Kasubhai, president, University of Oregon Law School Student Bar Association.

II. [4:30 - 5:45 pm] Corporate Violence and Lawlessness Against Workers, Political Activists and the Environment.

Gene Lawhorn, labor historian for KBOO radio, Portland; Greg Kafourey, Esq., Portland; George Draffan, Institute on Trade Policy, Seattle; Bill Street, IWA/IAM; Moderator - Richard Grossman, Program on Corporations, Law & Democracy, MA.

Friday, March 8

III. [9 - 10:15 am] Corporate Lawyers & Judges Transforming the Law: the various theories of the corporation; concocted legal doctrines and corporate law - the commerce clause, the 14th Amendment and personhood, loyalty, care, business judgment rule; citizen sovereignty, federalism, and states rights; the disempowerment of stockholders.

Professor David Saari, Department of Justice, Law & Society, American University; Richard Grossman; Tom Stephens, Esq., Chair, Toxics Committee of the National Lawyers Guild; Moderator - Ward Morehouse, Program on Corporations, Law & Democracy, NY.

IV. [10:30 - 11:45 am] Giant Corporations Acting As Political Bodies: what large corporations are, what they do - the extent of corporate control over governance, work, money, thought, community, production, resources, education, foreign policy. . .

Professor David Saari; Jane Anne Morris, Democracy Unlimited of Wisconsin; Greg Kafourey, Esq.; Ward Morehouse; Moderator - Richard Grossman, Program on Corporations.

V. [4 - 5:15 pm] Citizen Struggles Against Corporate Power in the 20th Century: how political and social movements both struggled against, and conferred legitimacy upon, the giant corporation; successes and failures, from anti-trust to environmental legislation to worker and community uprisings; "feigned dissent" and false victories; the growth and diversion of popular movements; lessons to be learned.

Dennis Green, Visiting Professor, University of Oregon Law School; Jane Anne Morris; Asante Riverwind, Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project, Oregon; Don Hopps, Director, Coalition For A Livable Washington; Moderator - Ward Morehouse, Program on Corporations.

Saturday, March 9

VI. [9 - 10:15 am] Alternatives to Giant Corporations: forging institutional, legal, and cultural transitions; redirecting money and resources.

Professor Steve Bender, University of Oregon Law School; Rebecca Bauen, Institute for Washington's Future; Bruce Creps, Burley Design Cooperative; Moderator - Ward Morehouse, Program on Corporations.

VII. [2:30 - 3:45 pm] Rethinking Property/Regulatory and Administrative Law as Corporate Shields: intangible corporate "rights" as property; diverse ownership/use perspectives on real property; the reliance interest; the impact of legal doctrines on property in regulatory and administrative law; regulatory and administrative agencies as barriers between the sovereign people and corporate fictions.

Marc Porier, Associate Professor of Law, Seton Hall Law School; Tom Stephens, Esq.; Leah Margulies, Esq., former legal adviser to UNICEF; Richard Grossman, Program on Corporations; Moderator - Jim Price, Esq., Sierra Club Southeast Region.

VIII. [4 - 5:15 pm] People's Lawyers in Popular Offensives against Corporate Rule/Withdrawing Constitutional Protections from Corporations: legal strategizing and political organizing as part of citizen movements for justice; crafting new constitutional theory, arguments, and law; revoking corporate charters; withdrawing personhood and other privileges and immunities from corporations; creative lawyering for defense and offense.

Greg Kafourey, Esq.; Bob Collin, civil rights attorney and Associate Professor of Environmental Studies, University of Oregon; Leah Margulies, Esq.; Tom Stephens, Esq.; Moderator - Mike Ferner, former city councilman, Toledo, Ohio.

after dinner keynote - Revoking the Corporation: Law, Democracy & the Sovereign People, by Richard Grossman, Program on Corporations, Law & Democracy.

Sunday, March 10

MORNING STRATEGY SESSION - [9 - 11 am] - Gilbert Hall Room 101

IX. Building a Planetary Corporate Disempowerment/Dismantling Movement: Where do we go from here? Next steps.

Chuck Willer, Coast Range Association; Karen Coulter, Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project; Jane Anne Morris; George Draffan; Ward Morehouse, Program on Corporations.

To learn more about the work of the
Program on Corporations, Law & Democracy,
please contact us at
Box 246
S. Yarmouth, MA   02664-0246
voice - (508) 398-1145/(212) 972-9877
fax - (508) 398-1552
e-mail -
web -

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