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James Between the Bookends Responds to “Aliens Among Us”

The rough draft here started out as a comment to Aliens Among Us on a blog I had found the day previous, which I consider to be worth following in my usual way, read a bunch of it over a few days and then follow new posts. I was originally drawn to its name: “Overcoming Bias.” As anyone who has given overcoming bias a serious effort will likely attest; it is much harder than just deciding not to be biased.

I often ponder how people relate to the concept of being average. Posted the day I first encountered Overcoming Bias was Good With Bad Traits. It seemed like the author, as myself has given occasional thought to a segment of Garrison Keillor’s opening monologue for “Lake Wobegon Days” where he states the smiling missive in the description of Lake Wobegon as where “all the children are above average.”

Overcoming Bias seemed extra relevant since I had pondered why men are traditionally the ones who change in a heterosexual relationship in my usual morning rush of thoughts that same day. This was distinct since I only rarely ponder relationships between two people.
aaron leighton

And the rough draft-



Two large missing pieces of this piece are that “big orgs” are overwhelmingly the progenitors of the waste that ends up in the environment and are likewise more likely to produce hazardous waste in amounts sufficient enough to cause large scale harm. Add to this the legal obligation to shareholders to assuage any mechanism of self-regulation if it cuts into the bottom line, it has to be concluded that sans heavy handed regulation, “big orgs” would create an unimaginable amount of harm.

With the bottom line trumping any sense of conscience, the contrivance of “corporate personhood” via the Fourteenth Amendment is already a step too far in allowing corporations to act in any way other than “in the public trust.” Acting “in the public trust” was once the credo of the original form of corporations known as “public trusts.” Allowed a highly disproportionate amount of influence and representation, corporations have eroded many of the obligations to the public they once held.

Regulations are only rarely created out of whole cloth in anticipation of potential wrong doing. Regulations are almost exclusively enacted as remedies to problems that occur. Which should speak volumes to why in a scenario of big firms verses small firms creating hazardous waste, small firms have less regulation

whether or not the firm is publicly held is a large determining factor. An incorporated firm can defer losses to share holders if convicted of wrong doing and would be more prone to do so. Many small firms, some of which are incorporated, are likely to be located near where the entrepreneur that owns it lives, so They are also more likely to do business locally and are directly tied to the community where they reside
The proportionate financial burden of representation
Being prudent in remaining within the law, small firms would do well, in this instance to think like big firms as far as regulations are conscerned, since a.) big firms payroll lawyers, so incurring legal action essentially costs them nothing in regard to representation
About I gave up on this piece really going anywhere with “Yet on the whole big orgs are a big reason we are rich and peaceful.” Really? As compared to what? There is no control group or country or world to compare this to, so it is a totally baseless statement. In fact on average peoples are lives worse off economically, environmentally and in terms of peace. This is compared to a real data set of years previous.

Actual response to Aliens Among Us-



My comment ended up being a virtual rough draft for an essay thirty words less than this post. My final drafts that don’t contain references turn out no less than 50% longer than the rough and often double it. Link to my nym is to the rough draft. I’m not trying to get traffic or attention to my own blog, I really think there are elements to this post that deserve analysis. Largely about the writing style used. Though perhaps it was written to illustrate the mind set the corporate media is pushing. I will give the author that much credence.

This post reads like a middle school “Why My Country is Great” essay and likewise offers no distinct lines between the relevant subjects it is comparing. In fact, since there are firms of every size between small and large, the distinction becomes unapproachably subjective. Whether or not the “firm” is a corporation that can defer losses to share holders at any given time is really a key point that would be relevant to both small and large firms. Most large firms are incorporated, while this holds true less as the size of the subject firm gets smaller.

As to the “corporation is a person too” argument, there are many reasons why this doesn’t hold up. Everything from mob mentality to the fact that corporations are bound to an ethos of profit makes the corporation into a sociopath if it is any kind of person as the excellent documentary “The Corporation” outlines in delicious detail. It’s free online.

My partial list of counter points-
  1. “big orgs” are overwhelmingly the progenitors of the waste that ends up in the environment and receive the most benefit from it’s production.

  2. “big orgs” are more likely to produce hazardous waste in amounts sufficient enough to cause large scale harm.

  3. Regulations are only rarely created out of whole cloth in anticipation of potential wrong doing. Regulations are almost exclusively enacted as remedies to problems that occur. Which should speak volumes to why in a scenario of big firms verses small firms creating hazardous waste, small firms have less regulation

  4. For several reasons small firms are tied closely to the communities where they are likely to produce waste.

  5. A large enough firm employs and has at their immediate disposal a lawyer or a team of lawyers making the prospect of legal proceedings less of a cost deterrent.


  6. And finally, the barb that I was going to throw-
    “Yet on the whole big orgs are a big reason we are rich and peaceful.” Really? As compared to what? There is no control group or country or world to compare this to, so it is a totally baseless statement. In fact, on average peoples are lives worse off economically, environmentally and in terms of peace. This is compared to a real data set of years previous.

Thank you and good night. Damn, it’s morning already.