The Boston Tea Party
The groupthink meeting the Vote Local Control folks had on Tuesday got me to thinking about the Boston Tea Party. They mention it on their web site and brought it up at their anti- corporate hate fest, although the Eureka Reporter article doesn't mention it.
They claim the Tea Party was a demonstration against corporate power. My knowledge of early U.S. history being somewhat clouded, I'd been under the impression it was an demonstration against taxes, specifically; taxation without representation.
So, which was it? Maybe a little of both, but I'm not sure corporations had anything to do with it, per se.
I did a quick check on Wikipedia and found this entry. It all started over a tax on that England levied on tea. A boycott began against the East India Company (EIC), which happened to be a corporation. The boycott succeeded at least in part because of smuggling of tea by colonists, most notably John Hancock.
Most ports in the colonies were turning the East India Company ships back, further strengthening the boycott, except for Boston, where the Governor protected the East India Ships and allowed them to dock. The Boston Tea Party was the result.
So, the colonists are upset over taxation without representation, that being the tax on tea. Smuggling starts up, as would be expected, as well as a boycott of EIC's tea imports. The boycott seems to have worked as the British then changed policy and allowed direct sales to the colonies by EIC and which allowed them to undercut the smuggler's prices.
The question I have is what did any of that have to do with EIC being an incorporated business? Nothing, it would seem. The same thing would likely have happened had EIC been owned by one person, or even an operation run by the British government.
Seems to me the Boston Tea Party had it's roots in a protest against taxes. Then, it morphed into a trade war between colonial smugglers and the EIC.
The only thing the Boston Tea Party had to do with corporations, that I can see, is the East India Company was incorporated, as were a number of companies at the time. I can't help but wonder how many colonists, including John Hancock, were incorporated as well?