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Re: [ontolog-forum] Can we see Murray Hill's driving license please? (wa

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "doug foxvog" <doug@xxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 2010 10:49:30 -0000 (GMT)
Message-id: <35952.>
Peter F. Brown wrote:
> Corporations don't (yet) have *all* the rights the founding fathers meant
> for citizens.    (01)

> The Constitution stipulates three qualifications for membership in
> Congress: U.S. citizenship, residency in the state represented, and a
> minimum age. Representatives must be at least twenty-five years old to
> take their oath of office, while senators must be thirty.    (02)

The Constitution seems to be mostly honored in the breach, but the exact
wording is somewhat different.  The Constitution says that members of
the House and Senate shall be chosen by the people of the states, but
limits what persons may be representatives.  If corporations are considered
persons, then the requirements apply to them, if they are not considered
persons, then the requirements do not!  Supreme Court rulings since the
1880s have considered corporations to be persons.    (03)

Article 1 Section 2:    (04)

  "The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen ... by
   the People of the several States....    (05)

   No Person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to the
   Age of twenty five Years, and been seven Years a Citizen of the United
   States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State
   in which he shall be chosen.    (06)

Article 1 Section 3:
  "No person shall be a Senator who shall not have attained to the Age of
   thirty Years, and been nine Years a Citizen of the United States, and
   who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State for which
   he shall be chosen."    (07)

17th Amendment:
  "The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from
   each State, elected by the people thereof..."    (08)

These articles do not state that a Representative or Senator must be a
person.  They apply restrictions to those who are persons, however.    (09)

There are three requirements: age, citizenship, and having inhabitant
status.  Age is not restricted to living things; it is also a property of
corporations.  The second and third requirements are based on legal
definitions.    (010)

If a corporation is a person, then it must be a citizen.  The 14th
Amendment defines citizens:
  "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the
   jurisdiction  thereof, are citizens..."
Corporations are not born.  Thus, to be a citizen, they must be naturalized,
i.e., a Federal law must be passed to define a process for their becoming
citizens (Article 1, Section 8) and the corporation must have become a
citizen through following the procedures of such a law.  No such law has
been passed (afaik) and no corporation has become a citizen via that
route.  Until such a law is passed, corporations have become citizens
according to such a naturalization law, and the appropriate number of
years have passed, no corporation may be a member of Congress.    (011)

The requirement on being an inhabitant also relies on a legal definition
which probably does not currently apply to corporations.  Again, laws could
be changed to allow this.  The 1812 Webster's Dictionary defines
"inhabitant" as "[o]ne who has a legal settlement in a town, city or
parish. The conditions or qualifications which constitute a person an
inhabitant of a town or parish ... are defined by the statutes of
different governments or states."    (012)

The author of the restrictions was obviously not a logician.  Those banned
from the status of being a member of congress are defined in the text as:
   Banned(x) <= ~(A(x) and B(x)) and ~C(x).    (013)

As stated, if formal logic were applied to the wording of these
restrictions, any inhabitant of a state could become a member of congress
regardless of her age or citizenship (since ~C(x) would be false) as could
any citizen of appropriate age regardless of where that citizen resides
(since ~(A(x) and B(x)) would be false).    (014)

However, the intended meaning of the second "and" is a second (third)
criteria for banning membership.  This is
equivalent to a logical "or".  I.e.,
   Banned(x) <= ~(A(x) and B(x))
   Banned(x) <= ~C(x).
Combining these yields:
   Banned(x) <= ~(A(x) and B(x)) or ~C(x)
   Banned(x) <= ~A(x) or ~B(x) or ~C(x)    (015)

> One would hope that the Courts would test the conformance with those
> qualifications before falling for a PR scoop!    (016)

Courts avoid such political matters.  They were perfectly willing to accept
John McCain as president, should he had been elected, even though the
Constitution restricts the office to "natural born Citizen[s]".  John
McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone at a time which, because of a
slip-up in laws due to the strange status of the Zone, children of US
citizens born there were not born US citizens.  Several years after McCain's
birth, the error was discovered and a law was passed granting citizenship
to everyone born in the Canal Zone up to (and after) that point.  John
McCain was thus a naturalized citizen (one made a citizen after birth
due to a law passed by Congress), but not a "natural born Citizen".  This
did not ban him from being a senator and the courts would not touch it as
restricting him from becoming president.    (017)

-- doug foxvog    (018)

> Cheers,
> Peter
> From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> [mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Kathryn B
> Laskey
> Sent: Saturday, 13 March 2010 22:03
> To: [ontolog-forum]
> Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Foundation ontology, CYC, and Mapping
> A.P. Herbert, in his "Misleading cases" had great fun interpreting legal
> terms, so that a cow had to be accepted by a bank as a cheque (check for
> the US) and a snail was a "wild and savage beast" - in the same category
> as a lion.
> Murray Hill, a candidate for the US Congress, is a Silver Spring public
> relations firm running on a platform of corporate civil rights.  For
> those who don't follow U.S. politics, the US Supreme Court recently ruled
> that corporate funding for political campaign broadcasts cannot be limited
> because of the US Constitution's guarantee of free speech.  When the
> decision was announced, many commentators immediately pointed out the
> far-reaching implications of this ruling. Clearly, Murray Hill considers
> the right to run for public office to be a natural next ste nbsp;web
> site states:  "...thanks to an enlightened Supreme Court, corporations
> now have all the rights the founding fathers meant for us. It was their
> dream to build the best democracy money can buy."
> Yes there are intended meanings, but actually tying them down is very
> tricky.
> Right.  So is Murray Hill entitled to run for Congress?  
> Kathy    (019)

doug foxvog    doug@xxxxxxxxxx   http://ProgressiveAustin.org    (020)

"I speak as an American to the leaders of my own nation. The great
initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours."
    - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
=============================================================    (021)

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