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    News — corporate power

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    Amendments to the Constitution

    link NPR 1A podcast on need for new amendments and changes to the judicial system:  stop the shadow docket, push the ERA amendment, make ethics apply to judges and the Supreme Court, mandatory retirement, term limits,  make ratification depend on population,(not on states); a voting rights act, no citizen rights for corporations (overturn citizens united), limit access to  automatic weapons,  require background checks, require red flag laws,  prevent judges from radically changing the laws,  and limit corporations and wealthy individuals from packing the courts.     Leonard Leo led the Federalist Society "to influence elections, judicial appointments and policy battles" and " helped select judges to nominate to the Supreme Court and directed multimillion dollar media campaigns to confirm them.")  He recently received $1.6 billion  to continue to push thru his pro-business changes in the law.  link 

    Dirty Tricks by Florida Power and Light electric utility- to stop rooftop solar and get billions

    great list of articles about corruption partly by FL Power and light  from jason garcia's substack  "Seeking Rents". He uncovers misdeeds and corruption  by FPL, Gov DeSantis, and other politicians.
    more good stuff by him:

    Corporations Kill and Maim & Get Away with It-Johnson and Johnson's Baby Powder; Abbott's Powdered milk; Johns-Manville and W.R. Grace's Asbestos; Bayer/Monsanto's RoundUp

    article It seems that they market the baby powder  to appear  baby- and family- friendly and to gain life-long customers for its other products.  They resisted attempts to ban it.  Finally,  in 2020 they stopped selling it in the US.  Until 2022 they  still sold baby powder with talc  that could contain asbestos like fibers in other countries.   

    Johnson  and Johnson's tricky bankruptcy  is  delaying lawsuits  and limiting settlements by women with ovarian, cervical, and or lung cancer that the women  believe is caused by the baby powder.   THIS SORT OF FAKE BANKRUPTCY HAS BEEN TRIED BY THE SACKLER FAMILY WITH OXYCONTIN and  the Koch  Georgia Pacific company.  Bayer/Monsanto may use it with the carcinogenic herbicide Roundup.   Earlier similar schemes were used by the tobacco/cigarette companies, asbestos companies,   land others.  Johns-Manville asbestos company"Outrageous Misconduct: the Asbestos Industry on Trial" – 1985, by Paul Brodeur.

    Libby Montana: Asbestos and the Deadly silence of An American Corporation by Andrea Peacock

      It is like Nader said- big companies try stop laws from passing, then limit the administrative rules to enforce the laws, then limit the budget and staff of the administrative agencies (EPA, FDA, ....), sue over the rules of these agencies, get their allies appointed to the agencies, then sue over the enforcement of the rules, then appeal, all the while while stacking the courts with pro-corporate judges.  They  also give millions to PR firms and fake science studies to confuse the issues.            Judge Rakoff , in his book Why the Innocent Plead Guilty and Guilty Go Free , has said that the legal system is sort of a religious sham , where you act subservient  and rise to this robed judge who sometimes is a cog is a system that punishes the poor and citizens while enriching the elites.

    Merchants of Doubt, by Oreskes and Conway, a book and a movie,  explains the history of corporate efforts to use PR  to confuse the public and the experts .

    Excerpts from New Yorker article that list the consumer products of companies that are using bankruptcy to avoid lawsuits. 

    " Johnson & Johnson products: baby shampoo, Band-Aids, Neosporin, Rogaine, and O.B. tampons; Tylenol, Imodium, Motrin, and Zyrtec; Listerine mouthwash and Nicorette gum; Aveeno lotion and Neutrogena cleanser; catheters and stents for the heart; balloons for dilating the ear, nose, and throat; hemostats and staples; ankle, hip, shoulder, and knee replacements; breast implants; Acuvue contact lenses. But what few of those consumers grasped until a series of baby-powder cases began to go to trial was that, for decades, the company had known that its powders could contain asbestos, among the world’s deadliest carcinogens."

    "No corporation was daring enough to try the two-step until 2017, when Koch Industries used it to shield a subsidiary, Georgia-Pacific, from asbestos claims related to its paper and building products. The parent company formed a Texas corporation called, improbably, Bestwall, which declared bankruptcy in North Carolina three months later, spinning off all the asbestos-related liabilities while allowing Georgia-Pacific to continue making billions of dollars in profits through its other products, among them Brawny paper towels, Quilted Northern toilet paper, and Dixie cups."

     

     A recent  NYT article explains how Abbott is winning lawsuits about its powdered baby formula  causing severe brain injures in babies. Abbot's attorneys allegedly used a scorched earth policy,  interrupting alot to prevent witnesses from testifying during depositions.  

    Cancel Student Debt- Successes Thru Organizing!

    Latino USA reporter explains how bogus fake colleges impoverish students and their families.  She shows how students organized to get some of the debt cancelled.  This is an ongoing story.   

    The Growing Call to Abolish Student Debt

    By JULIA ROCHA JUL 22, 2022

    latino usa on NPR PRX

     

    Link

    Surveillance Capitalism Book

    Book    Review

     FB, Google, Amazon, etc. gather information about us , so they can predict and modify our behavior.  Then companies and political campaigns pay Google, FB, and Amazon for the predictions, so that they can modify our purchases, opinions, and votes.   They can get us to vote for particular candidates. They can make us conform.  Countries spy on their citizens,  journalists, and opponents, and sometimes harass, beat, jail, or kill them.