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General News    H2'ed 4/15/13

Pennsylvania Court Deals Blow to Fracking Industry: Corporations Not The Same As Persons With Privacy Rights

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Summing up, the Court said "it is axiomatic that corporations, companies, and partnerships have "no spiritual nature,' "feelings,' "intellect,' "beliefs,' "thoughts,' "emotions,' or "sensations,' because they do not exist in the manner that humankind exists" They cannot be "let alone' by government, because businesses are like grapes, ripe upon the vine of the law, that the people of this Commonwealth raise, tendm prune and their pleasure and need."

The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund's Linzey said that this ruling will affect other anti-fracking litigation in state court, but more importantly is a landmark in the ongoing community rights movement to elevate public values over private profits.

"It is that disobedience, of entire communities sitting at lunch counters demanding to be served, that is our only hope of salvation in a world increasingly commandeered by a small handful of corporate decisionmakers intent on remaking the world as their own," he said. "A revolution that subordinates the powers and rights of corporations to the rights of people and nature now waits in the wings."

"Judge O'Dell Seneca is on the right side of history," said Bonifaz. "She has clearly articulated what millions of people across this country understand: that people, not corporations, shall govern in America. Judge O'Dell Seneca's ruling provides further legal support for the national movement for a constitutional amendment to reclaim our democracy and to make clear that corporations are not people with constitutional rights."

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Steven Rosenfeld  covers democracy issues for AlterNet. He is a longtime print and broadcast journalist and has reported for National Public Radio, Monitor Radio, Marketplace,  and many newspapers. (more...)
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