Created on Sunday, 22 June 2008 12:23
Written by Siv O'Neall
The Corporations â€“ Killers of Democracy
by Siv O'Neall
t's way too late at this moment to ask the question: Are we going to lose our democracy? We may not all have noticed it yet, but the Big Corporations stole our democracy a long time ago.
How did they manage? They bought up everything, from the heavy to the light industry, arms, oil, chemical, to the people in Congress who are supposed to protect us from abuse of power by applying the rules set down in the Constitution.
But, above all, they bought up the media.
There is no objective source for authentic news in the U.S. any more, other than the Internet.
Murdoch and his equally power-hungry fellow media moguls have seen to
it that we just get pre-cooked baby-formula infotainment. People are
dumbed down by the non-stop stream of meaningless chatter and unceasing
Two major disasters
Among all the
outrageous and inhuman crimes that plague the world today, there are
two all-consuming current disasters which tie into all the other
dictatorial abuses of power, from the executive to the lobbies that
have bought up the government in all its forms.
There is first
of all world hunger and, on the same level of emergency, the phenomenon
of global warming â€“ both those enormous problems having to be seen as
the disasters that must be dealt with in the most urgent way possible.
And today, there is virtually no urgency displayed in the way those
disasters are dealt with â€“ or not dealt with.
And yet, those
two huge problems have to be solved if the world is going to continue
in a shape even vaguely like the world as we know it.
the planetary inequality which has caused the world hunger that finally
seems to have attracted wide-spread attention. It is obviously not a
recent phenomenon, but it has been enhanced by the rise in food prices,
which have multiple causes â€“ the use of food for biofuel, the rise in
the price of oil for transport, the droughts in Australia and in
Africa, the enormous sham of GMOs that were made out to be capable of
saving the world from hunger, but instead are doing the opposite. And
let's not forget about the role the speculators and the hedge funds are
playing in their roulette game with heavily loaded dice.
second enormous disaster is climate change, which we don't seem to be
able to do anything much about. Or rather, governments are, at their
own peril, disregarding the imminent danger of inaction in the face of
global warming. It would be perfectly possible to roll back the
disastrous situation where we find ourselves today. However, instead of
dealing with the problem of over-consumption of oil in a rational way
in order to save our lives and the life of the planet, governments are
forging ahead in the same old way of splurging on oil consumption as if
there was no tomorrow. Oil companies go on making bigger profits than
ever before in human history, while the people are paying the price for
their obscene profits at the gas pumps.
Why the lack of action?
why can't we deal with the two foremost disasters, poverty and climate
change? Because the corporations are more interested in making big
bucks than saving the planet or saving people from starvation. Once
again, it's that short-term profit that outplays all true concern for
realism and sound planning. Speculators drive up the prices of
commodities without a second thought for the consequences of their
short-sighted game of quick profit which produces nothing and benefits
So the real rulers of the world, the Big Corporations,
are condemning us to a life of increased poverty and hunger in
third-world countries, a general increase in insecurity and joblessness
for middle class people in the western world and increased pollution in
the emerging economies in Asia, where the standard of living is
actually rising â€“ for the rich. And of course, alongside all these
disasters, we are seeing the lives of steadily increasing luxury for
the people who are reaping the profits of the plunder. The Corporations
see to it that the so-called governments, their obedient front men, cut
back the taxes on the top levels of income, on capital gains and on
Ethanol is NOT the solution
is big talk and lots of activity for the production of ethanol, which
is exactly the way we should NOT be going in the campaign to lower the
rate of release of CO2 gas into the atmosphere. This use of corn, sugar
cane and soybeans for biofuel makes for less food for the hungry in the
third world and also in Brazil, which is now considered an emerging
nation rather than a developing one, increasing food prices in the
entire world. It does not make for less emission of CO2 gas since the
production of ethanol gives off more CO2 than it saves as an
alternative fuel. But corporations and industrial farms are taking
advantage of people's ignorance and gullibility and making huge
profits. (See Addendum on ethanol*) Rain forests are being cut down to
make room for millions of acres of culture for the production of
ethanol and biodiesel. And those rain forests are exactly the best
protection on the planet against too much CO2 in the atmosphere. 
Corporations make money off ethanol production, so that's the way we
are going, even though it increases world hunger and does absolutely
nothing to save the world from global warming.
Production of grazing land for cattle
is also being taken over for production of grazing land for cattle who
are the heaviest consumers of grain and who, when converted to meat
offer far less nourishment than they have consumed during their growing
One goal for corporations â€“ maximum profit
other words, the two problems of poverty and hunger and the problem of
climate change are deeply intertwined. Both problems could be dealt
with rationally, certainly to a somewhat satisfactory extent. But the
corporations are not making money off a policy of improving the
situation for the starving people in the world or on the urgent need to
limit global warming and the disastrous consequences the planet will be
undergoing in a near future. We have already begun to see the effects
of climate change, but since the corporations own the governments,
there is little chance that anything radical will get done very soon.
are several ways of producing renewable energy, but who cares? There is
no money in it. There is, above all, solar and wind energy waiting to
be developed, but no big-scale efforts have been made so far to save
the planet using these fabulous non-polluting sources of energy. On a
small scale, yes, enough to prove that it works. Even the tidal
movements of ocean water can very efficiently be used to make energy.
But it wouldn't make any big bucks for the Corporations. And the
Corporation is King. So what happens? We have opted for the destruction
of the planet.
In short, the world has been taken over by the
Big Corporations hand-in-hand with the Main Stream Media and they are
all busy shredding our human rights and making our planet into a
sterile desert. As long as wildfire capitalism is ruling the world, we
*Addendum on Ethanol
- Ethanol And Biodiesel From Crops Not Worth The Energy ScienceDaily
(Jul. 6, 2005) â€“ ITHACA, N.Y. â€“ Turning plants such as corn, soybeans
and sunflowers into fuel uses much more energy than the resulting
ethanol or biodiesel generates, according to a new Cornell University
and University of California-Berkeley study. "There is just no energy
benefit to using plant biomass for liquid fuel," says David Pimentel,
professor of ecology and agriculture at Cornell. "These strategies are
In terms of energy output compared with energy input for ethanol production, the study found that:
- corn requires 29 percent more fossil energy than the fuel produced;
- switch grass requires 45 percent more fossil energy than the fuel produced; and
- wood biomass requires 57 percent more fossil energy than the fuel produced.
In terms of energy output compared with the energy input for biodiesel production, the study found that:
- soybean plants requires 27 percent more fossil energy than the fuel produced, and
- sunflower plants requires 118 percent more fossil energy than the fuel produced.
has shown that the Amazon rain forest is not a stable mature
forest with growth and decay in balance but is in fact an expanding
forest that is being fertilised by the excess atmospheric CO2. The
trees are getting bigger and there is a net take up of 5000 kg of
carbon per hectare per year ( 1 hectare = 100 x 100 metres ). The total
area of forest is 400 million hectares so the whole forest could be
absorbing 2 billion tons of carbon per year."
Amazon rainforest burns and releases billions of tons of CO2 into the
atmosphere in a short period then this will be a further boost to
global warming that will result in significantly higher end of century
Â© Copyright 2008 by AxisofLogic.com
Jun 1, 2008
is an Axis of Logic columnist, based in France. She can be reached at
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