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Occupy the Courts, Columbus Ohio plus Cornell West at Occupy Gainsville and more

53:00 minutes (48.52 MB)

Bob Fitrakis at Occupy the Courts rally in Columbus Ohio

Bob Fitrakis is a journalist, attorney, and professor of political science at Columbus State Community College. He spoke with WCRS on Jan 20 at Occupy the Courts, a rally and protest against the US Supreme Court's Citizens United ruling on the second anniversary of the decision. Activists gathered said corporations are not people and money is not speech.

“ Many other democracies don’t have these problems. For example, you could require elected stakeholders, workers on every corporate board in America. Like Germany, we could require the larger ones---with more than 5,000 employees---- have half of their boards elected by their workers; and that if it’s a tie between their workers and the representatives of management, the workers get to break the tie.”

Fitrakis said corporate personhood is part of a broader issue.

“It’s the fact that our corporations are absolutely undemocratic. You got 12 people. Often these corporate directors are responsible only to a bottom line, not to the country, the community, or its workers.”

He calls for democratizing corporations.

“The first step is to say they are not people; they are legal fictions…Conservatives like to talk about states’ rights. But in the old days, you could pull a corporation’s charter if it was acting outside of what you chartered it to do.”

Fitrakis said in the past corporations existed for a period of time and then went out of business.