FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Wiist’s Crusade

You hear that cigarettes are bad for public health.

And that asbestos is bad for public health.

And that guns are bad for public health.

And that pollution is bad for public health.

That junk food is bad for public health.

But you rarely hear that corporations themselves are bad for public health.

That’s about to change.

A group of academics and activists are starting to push the idea that corporations are bad for public health.

At Hunter College, Nicholas Freudenberg has set up a web site to discuss the issue.

And now comes William Wiist.

Wiist is chair of the Health Sciences Department at Northern Arizona University.

Last year, he authored an article for the American Journal of Public Health titled “Public Health and the Anti-Corporate Movement.”

And now he’s working on a book for Oxford University Press tentatively titled Bottom Line or Public Health.

“There is a large contingent of people who believe there needs to be reform of corporations,” Wiist told CORPORATE CRIME REPORTER in an interview last week. “There are many campaigns against individual corporations – trying to get them to behave in a more socially responsible manner. But corporations operate the way they are supposed to operate – the way the laws were set up for them to operate. Any particular corporation may be operating in a way that we may consider egregious. But they are operating to produce a profit, to externalize the costs, as they are supposed to, to bring maximum profit. Their officers are supposed to act in the best interests of the corporation and its investors. So, all corporations are operating the way they are supposed to. And they operate in similar ways. So, why attack one corporation for doing this poorly, or that poorly? We need to look at the underlying foundations of the corporation and how they operate under the law.”

Is Wiist talking about corporations or capitalism?

“Some people would probably extend the argument to say that it’s really capitalism,” Wiist said. “But I’m focused on the corporation. It is a specific entity governed by laws and regulations. And those can be addressed through the democratic process and through advocacy. Capitalism is a more nebulous. Corporations are a manifestation of capitalism.”

[For a complete transcript of the Interview with William Wiist, see 22 CORPORATE CRIME REPORTER 19(14), May 5, 2008, print edition only.]

 

 

 

 

 

 

More articles by:
Weekend Edition
July 10, 2020
Friday - Sunday
Lynnette Grey Bull
Trump’s Postcard to America From the Shrine of Hypocrisy
Anthony DiMaggio
Free Speech Fantasies: the Harper’s Letter and the Myth of American Liberalism
David Yearsley
Morricone: Maestro of Music and Image
Jeffrey St. Clair
“I Could Live With That”: How the CIA Made Afghanistan Safe for the Opium Trade
Rob Urie
Democracy and the Illusion of Choice
Paul Street
Imperial Blind Spots and a Question for Obama
Vijay Prashad
The U.S. and UK are a Wrecking Ball Crew Against the Pillars of Internationalism
Melvin Goodman
The Washington Post and Its Cold War Drums
Richard C. Gross
Trump: Reopen Schools (or Else)
Chris Krupp
Public Lands Under Widespread Attack During Pandemic 
Alda Facio
What Coronavirus Teaches Us About Inequality, Discrimination and the Importance of Caring
Eve Ottenberg
Bounty Tales
Andrew Levine
Silver Linings Ahead?
John Kendall Hawkins
FrankenBob: The Self-Made Dylan
Pam Martens - Russ Martens
Deutsche Bank Fined $150 Million for Enabling Jeffrey Epstein; Where’s the Fine Against JPMorgan Chase?
David Rosen
Inequality and the End of the American Dream
Louis Proyect
Harper’s and the Great Cancel Culture Panic
Thom Hartmann
How Billionaires Get Away With Their Big Con
REZA FIYOUZAT
Your 19th COVID Breakdown
Danny Sjursen
Undercover Patriots: Trump, Tulsa, and the Rise of Military Dissent
Charles McKelvey
The Limitations of the New Antiracist Movement
Binoy Kampmark
Netanyahu’s Annexation Drive
Joseph G. Ramsey
An Empire in Points
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
COVID-19 Denialism is Rooted in the Settler Colonial Mindset
Ramzy Baroud
On Israel’s Bizarre Definitions: The West Bank is Already Annexed
Judith Deutsch
Handling Emergency: A Tale of Two Males
Michael Welton
Getting Back to Socialist Principles: Honneth’s Recipe
Dean Baker
Combating the Political Power of the Rich: Wealth Taxes and Seattle Election Vouchers
Jonah Raskin
Edward Sanders: Poetic Pacifist Up Next
Manuel García, Jr.
Carbon Dioxide Uptake by Vegetation After Emissions Shutoff “Now”
Heidi Peltier
The Camo Economy: How Military Contracting Hides Human Costs and Increases Inequality
Ron Jacobs
Strike!, Fifty Years and Counting
Ellen Taylor
The Dark Side of Science: Shooting Barred Owls as Scapegoats for the Ravages of Big Timber
Sarah Anderson
Shrink Wall Street to Guarantee Good Jobs
Graham Peebles
Prison: Therapeutic Centers Or Academies of Crime?
Zhivko Illeieff
Can We Escape Our Addiction to Social Media?
Clark T. Scott
The Democrat’s Normal Keeps Their (Supposed) Enemies Closer and Closer
Steve Early - Suzanne Gordon
In 2020 Elections: Will Real-Life “Fighting Dems” Prove Irresistible?
David Swanson
Mommy, Where Do Peace Activists Come From?
Christopher Brauchli
Trump the Orator
Gary Leupp
Columbus and the Beginning of the American Way of Life: A Message to Indoctrinate Our Children
John Stanton
Donald J. Trump, Stone Cold Racist
Nicky Reid
The Stonewall Blues (Still Dreaming of a Queer Nation)
Stephen Cooper
A Kingston Reasoning with Legendary Guitarist Earl “Chinna” Smith (The Interview: Part 2)
Hugh Iglarsh
COVID-19’s Coming to Town
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail