Robert Reich: How to Hold Corporations Accountable

Robert Reich: How to Hold Corporations Accountable
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    Charles E. Wilson, the CEO of General Motors in the middle part of the last century, reputedly
    once said that "what was good for our country was good for General Motors, and vice versa."
    The idea was that large corporations had a duty not just to their shareholders, but also
    to their employees, customers, and community.
    What was good for all these stakeholders was inseparable from what was good for a big corporation like GM.
    But in the 1980's, this shifted.
    The only goal of large corporations goal became maximizing profits and returns for shareholders.
    Corporate profits are now higher as a share of the total economy than they were for most of
    the past century and workers' share of the total economy has decreased with every generation.
    Corporations are now amassing huge control over our economy and politics, and fueling widening
    economic inequality.
    Workers must have more power.
    Elizabeth Warren's proposal, the Accountable Capitalism Act, is a good starting point at remaking
    the economic system so it works for all of us.
    It recognizes that large corporations, with revenues of $1 billion or more, are so big
    and powerful they should be held to a higher standard of conduct–chartered by the federal
    government to serve all their stakeholders, not just their shareholders.
    Under Warren's proposal, workers would elect at least 40 percent of big corporations' boards of directors.
    These corporations wouldn't be able to make political contributions without the approval
    of 75 percent of their directors and shareholders.
    And their legal right to exist could be revoked if they engaged in repeated and egregious
    Effective action to hold corporations accountable needs to be federal because the states, left
    to their own devices, have to compete with one another for businesses to locate in their
    This has led to a race to the bottom for corporate cash.
    Two-thirds of big corporations in America are now officially headquartered in Delaware,
    because Delaware's corporate laws are weakest.
    This would be a huge change, bringing into better balance the voices of American workers
    with the overwhelming dominance of big corporations and their major investors.
    It's time to demand that the economic system work for all of us.
    What do you think? Do you think it's possible to make corporations accountable?
    Let us know in the comments.
    If you found this video informative, be sure to also watch our video on the
    Monopolization of America. And as always, subscribe to this channel for more videos like this one.
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