Corporate republic

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A corporate republic is a theoretical form of government run primarily like a business, involving a board of directors and executives, in which all aspects of society are privatized by a single, or small groups of companies. The ultimate goal of this state is to increase the wealth of its shareholders, and the government acknowledges its status as a corporation. Utilities, including hospitals, schools, the military, and the police force, would be privatized. The social welfare function carried out by the state is instead carried out by corporations in the form of pensions and benefits to employees.

Board of directors board composed of directors

A board of directors is a group of people who jointly supervise the activities of an organization, which can be either a for-profit business, nonprofit organization, or a government agency. Such a board's powers, duties, and responsibilities are determined by government regulations and the organization's own constitution and bylaws. These authorities may specify the number of members of the board, how they are to be chosen, and how often they are to meet.

Corporate titles or business titles are given to company and organization officials to show what duties and responsibilities they have in the organization. Such titles are used by publicly and privately held for-profit corporations. In addition, many non-profit organizations, educational institutions, partnerships, and sole proprietorships also confer corporate titles.

Within economics the concept of utility is used to model worth or value, but its usage has evolved significantly over time. The term was introduced initially as a measure of pleasure or satisfaction within the theory of utilitarianism by moral philosophers such as Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill. But the term has been adapted and reapplied within neoclassical economics, which dominates modern economic theory, as a utility function that represents a consumer's preference ordering over a choice set. As such, it is devoid of its original interpretation as a measurement of the pleasure or satisfaction obtained by the consumer from that choice.

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Corporate republics do not exist officially in the modern history. Modern competition laws and the development of modern nation-states help prevent such a company from gaining or being granted that amount of political power. Historical states, such as post-classical Florence and the East India Company, might be said to have been governed as corporate republics. Political scientists have also considered state socialist nations (criticised as state capitalist) to be forms of corporate republics, with the state assuming full control of all economic and political life and establishing a monopoly on everything within national boundaries, effectively making the state itself equatable to a giant corporation.[ citation needed ]

Modern history Era from ca. 1500 until present

Modern history, the modern period or the modern era, is the linear, global, historiographical approach to the time frame after post-classical history. Modern history can be further broken down into periods:

Republic of Florence City-state on the Apennine Peninsula between 1115 and 1532

The Republic of Florence, also known as the Florentine Republic, was a medieval and early modern state that was centered on the Italian city of Florence in Tuscany. The republic originated in 1115, when the Florentine people rebelled against the Margraviate of Tuscany upon the death of Matilda of Tuscany, a woman who controlled vast territories that included Florence. The Florentines formed a commune in her successors' place. The republic was ruled by a council known as the Signoria of Florence. The signoria was chosen by the gonfaloniere, who was elected every two months by Florentine guild members. The Republic, despite having a large degree of autonomy, was formally part of the Holy Roman Empire throughout its existence.

East India Company 16th through 19th-century British trading company

The East India Company (EIC), also known as the Honourable East India Company (HEIC) or the British East India Company, was an English and later British joint-stock company. It was formed to trade in the Indian Ocean region, initially with Mughal India and the East Indies, and later with Qing China. The company ended up seizing control over large parts of the Indian subcontinent, colonised parts of Southeast Asia, and colonised Hong Kong after a war with Qing China.

Corporate republics are used in works of science fiction or political commentary as a warning of the perceived dangers of capitalism. In such works, they usually arise when one or more vastly powerful corporations depose a government either over an extended time period via regulatory capture or swiftly in a coup d'état.

Science fiction Genre of speculative fiction

Science fiction is a genre of speculative fiction that has been called the "literature of ideas". It typically deals with imaginative and futuristic concepts such as advanced science and technology, time travel, parallel universes, fictional worlds, space exploration, and extraterrestrial life. It often explores the potential consequences of scientific innovations.

Political criticism is criticism that is specific of or relevant to politics, including policies, politicians, political parties, and types of government.

Capitalism is an economic system based on the private ownership of the means of production and their operation for profit. Characteristics central to capitalism include private property, capital accumulation, wage labor, voluntary exchange, a price system, and competitive markets. In a capitalist market economy, decision-making and investment are determined by every owner of wealth, property or production ability in financial and capital markets, whereas prices and the distribution of goods and services are mainly determined by competition in goods and services markets.

Examples

See also: List of chartered companies

The typical examples of corporate republics throughout history are typically the imperial East India Companies and other such chartered companies during the early modern era, such as the VOC, or the Honorable East India Company. Lesser known examples are the predecessor to the Congo Free State, the International Association of the Congo, the British South Africa Company, and the Langfang Republic

The East India Company, also known as the English East India Company, the British East India Company, and the Honourable East India Company was an English company founded in 1600

Dutch East India Company 17th-century Dutch trading company

The Dutch East India Company, officially the United East India Company was an early megacorporation founded by a government-directed amalgamation of several rival Dutch trading companies (voorcompagnieën) in the early 17th century. It was established on March 20, 1602, as a chartered company to trade with Mughal India during the period of proto-industrialization, from which 50% of textiles and 80% of silks were imported, chiefly from its most developed region known as Bengal Subah. In addition, the company Indianised Southeast Asian countries when the Dutch government granted it a 21-year monopoly on the Dutch spice trade. It has been often labelled a trading company or sometimes a shipping company. However, VOC was in fact a proto-conglomerate company, diversifying into multiple commercial and industrial activities such as international trade, shipbuilding, and both production and trade of East Indian spices, Formosan sugarcane, and South African wine. The Company was a transcontinental employer and an early pioneer of outward foreign direct investment. The Company's investment projects helped raise the commercial and industrial potential of many underdeveloped or undeveloped regions of the world in the early modern period. In the early 1600s, by widely issuing bonds and shares of stock to the general public, VOC became the world's first formally listed public company. In other words, it was the first corporation to be listed on an official stock exchange. It was influential in the rise of corporate-led globalisation in the early modern period.

International Association of the Congo association founded on 17 November 1879 by Leopold II of Belgium to further his interests in the Congo and recognised by the Berlin Conference as sovereign over the territories it controlled

The International Association of the Congo, also known as the International Congo Society, was an association founded on 17 November 1879 by Leopold II of Belgium to further his interests in the Congo. It replaced the Belgian Comité d'Études du Haut-Congo, which was part of the International African Association front organisation created for the exploration of the Congo. The goals of the International Congo Society was to establish control of the Congo Basin and to exploit its economic resources. The Berlin Conference recognised the society as sovereign over the territories it controlled and on August 1, 1885, i.e. four and half months after the closure of the Berlin Conference, King Leopold's Vice-Administrator General in the Congo, announced that the society and the territories it occupied were henceforth called "the Congo Free State".

The Republic of Florence

See also: The Florentine Republic

The maritime city-state of Florence in northwestern Italy is argued to be a corporate republic due to two factors. Like most of the merchant republics of Italy, Florence's social and economic life is dominated by vast guilds that regulate and control key industries in the city. But the key difference between Florence and other republics like Venice is that the city is administered by a council referred to as the Signoria of Florence, whose members are restricted to the members of the seven major guilds of Florence. But due the rigging of the Signoria electoral lottery system, members are typically those of influential families [1] , making the republic an aristocracy. This was exacerbated by the legal restriction that elective offices are restricted to the family members of previous holders [2] , which heralded the rise of the Medici's as a dynasty, legitimized by the 1533 ducal crowning of Alessandro de Medici, bringing the end of the Republic.

Maritime republics group of city-states, mostly in Italy, prosperous in the Middle ages

The maritime republics of the Mediterranean Basin were thalassocratic city-states which flourished in Italy and Dalmatia during the Middle Ages. The best known among the maritime republics are Venice, Genoa, Pisa, and Amalfi. Less known are Ragusa, Gaeta, Ancona, and Noli.

Republic of Venice Former state in Northeastern Italy

The Republic of Venice or Venetian Republic, traditionally known as La Serenissima was a sovereign state and maritime republic in northeastern Italy, which existed for over a millennium between the 7th century and the 18th century from 697 AD until 1797 AD. It was based in the lagoon communities of the historically prosperous city of Venice, and was a leading European economic and trading power during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance.

The Signoria was the government of medieval and renaissance Florence. Its nine members, the Priori, were chosen from the ranks of the guilds of the city: six of them from the major guilds, and two from the minor guilds. The ninth became the Gonfaloniere of Justice.

Second Republic

The New State [3] , was the corporatist far-left regime installed in Portugal in 1933.

The British East India Company in India

Starting in 1757 after the Battle of Plassey, the Company under Major-General Robert Clive was able to enthrone a puppet ruler in Bengal and was awarded the diwani, the right to collect revenue in Bengal and Bihar. Under subsequent Governor-Generals and their Presidency Armies, the Company was able to establish indirect British Rule in the Indian subcontinent until the revolt by the Sepoys (native Indian mercenaries) in 1857 forced the British Government to establish direct colonial rule in India.

The VOC Empire

The other classic example of a corporatocracy, the Dutch East India Company (aka, the VOC) was chartered by the Dutch Republic in order to monopolize trade in the East Indies and ensure the collective prosperity of the Republic. With the powers to conclude treaties, wage wars, imprison and execute convicts, [4] strike its own coins, and establish colonies, [5] the VOC created a vast corporate empire that set the standards for future transnational corporations.

See also

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References

  1. "Republic of Florence", Wikipedia, 2019-01-28, retrieved 2019-02-20
  2. "Republic of Florence", Wikipedia, 2019-01-28, retrieved 2019-02-20
  3. "Estado Novo (Portugal)", Wikipedia, 2019-06-29, retrieved 2019-07-07
  4. Pressley-Sanon, Toni (April 2014). "Young Nic and Kennedy Joe, dirs. Slave Ship Mutiny. 2010. 60 minutes. English. U.S. PBS. $24.99". African Studies Review. 57 (1): 253–255. doi:10.1017/asr.2014.37. ISSN   0002-0206.
  5. Gascoigne, John (2013-09-01), "The Globe Encompassed: France and Pacific Convergences in the Age of the Enlightenment", Discovery and Empire: The French in the South Seas, University of Adelaide Press, pp. 17–40, doi:10.20851/discovery-01, ISBN   9781922064523
  6. ISBN   978-0-349-11762-1