Friday, September 18, 2009

'Nuff said

(Taking context-optional note of thought-provoking quotes)

'[W]hat you are suggesting is that the courts who created corporations as persons, gave birth to corporations as persons, and there could be an argument made that that was the Court's error to start with, ... the fact that the Court imbued a creature of State law with human characteristics.'
-- Sonia Sotomayor (above right), posing the question that appears at page 33 of this transcript of the 1st oral argument in which she participated as an Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. (Here is audio of the September 9 argument in that campaign spending case, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission). Jess Bravin plumbed the possible implications of her query in this article in the Wall Street Journal (hat tip to SCOTUSblog); he further observed that "Sotomayor may have found a like mind in Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg" (below left), who evoked the American Declaration of Independence when she said, even earlier in the argument (transcript p. 4):
'A corporation, after all, is not endowed by its creator with inalienable rights.'
Ways that any rethinking of the legal personality of the corporation might affect subfields of international law -- in particular, the field of corporate responsibility -- deserve pondering.

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