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Corporations Are Not People by Jeffrey D. Clements

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Chapter OneAmerican DemocracyWorks, and CorporationsFight Back

In 1838, a quarter-century before he became the nation’s sixteenth president, a twenty-nine-year-old Abraham Lincoln stepped up to speak at the Young Men’s Lyceum in Springfield, Illinois. He spoke about what was to become the cause of his life: the preservation of that great American contribution to the human story, government of, for, and by the people. He insisted that the success or failure of the American experiment was up to us. “If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.”1

Lincoln’s generation of Americans, and every generation since, has faced daunting questions of whether ...

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