#22: Corporate Cliché


New member
I, too, have grown sick of the "industry is evil" trope. Unfortunately, kids' shows like Captain Planet and Fern Gully and comics such as Ms. Mystic have done their job too well, creating a fantasy world in impressionable young minds where giant factories exist only to create and distribute pollution. I've had office conversations with (much) younger co-workers who took the "industry/corporations are evil" stance, all the while wearing factory-made tennis shoes and clothing, talking on their factory-made and corporately promoted cell phones, driving to work in their cars created by the automotive industry. Despite all their "green" talk, they were entirely unwilling to give up all the useful tools and comforts that a corporate, industrial economy makes possible. Sheesh, I've watched movies from the Fifties where expanding your operations overseas wasn't seen as evil exploitation of natives or evil outsourcing of American jobs. It was providing good-paying jobs to impoverished Third Worlders who would now be able to feed their families and provide medical and dental care for their children. Corporate farming wasn't an attempt to make chickens' lives miserable or to pollute nearby rivers with pig poop, it was about ending global hunger.

And if capitalists and enterpreneurs, who must make decisions about locating or re-locating offices, plants and thereby making or ruining local small town economies, about acquiring and expending natural resources for their projects, about land use, etc., are inherently evil, where does that put many of our heroes? Bruce Wayne (industrialist), Tony Stark (industrialist), Reed Richards (industrialist), Ted Kord (industrialist), Oliver Queen (billionaire), Lamont Cranston (wealthy young man about town), Britt Reid (wealthy newspaper owner). Presumably, they've had to make some unpleasant choices, fire some people, step on some toes, buy low and sell high, just like Lex Luthor and Company, in order to stay in business and prosper.

That's why I didn't buy all the liberal guilt dished out by Green Arrow during his Seventies team-ups with Green Lantern. I mean, come on, everything good he was doing was being paid for by his "bad" business interests. When did working hard, exercising business saavy, getting a better idea, employing others to help fulfill your dream, and profiting from your efforts suddenly become evil?


Registered User
Validated User
Personally, I find the cold, calculating corporation dedicated to profit much more horrifying than the one dedicated to world domination to establish a new world order. The latter you can actually fight, the former generally persists regardless of what you do.

"Perhaps the business of the company itself is actually morally reprehensible, a franchise of abortion clinics, cigarettes, smut, weapons manufacture..."

I know this is going to start a flame war, I'm just trying to figure out how providing access to a constitutional right is morally reprehensible? The corporation would actually be doing a service by providing women's health services which are now very hard to find in this country. I mean really, there are plenty of things that are actually immoral to provide. Hell, even guns aren't something immediately morally reprehensible. Perhaps "morally questionable" might have been a better term by the author.
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