Corporate Campus Crimes2
Fortunately or unfortunately, I live in proximity to several corporate headquarters, and have had to include their campuses to get in a variable trek for my lengthy dog walkings. The experience from these trespasses has afforded me to develop a fledgling academic field by the name of Comparative Corporate Campus Ruminations. I say trespass, but from my perspective there is certainly also an impingement on me—and other lives much bigger than mine—which I suppose is the prime mover behind this post’s existence. So far all the walks have been very tranquil, whether on a weekday morning or a weekend evening. The natural sounds from crickets and locusts emanate from the tree packed margins—the “wild space” separating one corporate kingdom from its neighbor. Tree packed? It’s a relative term contrasted against the spacious, breathable, un-claustrophobic lawns occasioned by small tree islands. The scope of corporate lawns alone is an advertisement that these corporations are economy-driving job creators: think about how much mowing there is to benefit the backbone landscaping industry.
Tranquilized Environments: No More Kidding?
Why should I complain about something so pleasant, like having a free visit to a country club1? Even the parking is free, that is if you can find a spot. So much of the landscape that isn’t lawn is taken up by an assortment of giant asphalt solar tarps, where to park the car? These passive solar heaters must have been installed to counter the air conditioning system that must make things inside oppressively cold. One good thing then, at least, is that the people that work inside the large five story building must be forced to walk through the greened campus from wherever they park their cars, or where public transportation drops them off. There are, of course, the occasional rebels that decide to park on the asphalt solar tarps, but I’m sure corporations have a means of dealing with people who break their rule(s), such as placing the offender in a south-facing corner office where they are forced to see a blue-tinted sunny landscape all day long, as opposed to a choice cubicle with four generic walls to keep them company.
Changing Registers: No More Kidding!
In witness to overwhelming tragedy humans will sometimes make light of things to obscure the horror, as I have attempted above. However, I would like now to shine light on this particular tragedy because the voice of the ecosystem, which humans are generally deaf to, has now been eternally silenced. It’s hard to think of the past voices of grave-less plants, fungi, and animals when things are so quiet and peaceful; for me it is a sickening peace, the peace that follows a successful genocide.
With a little imagination the crime becomes obvious: 15 acres of tons upon tons of accumulated biomass—also known as life—virtually annihilated so that a few dozen humans can spend their “productive” hours sitting in a 1/4 acre office building. The crime is not past, and it is not contained to the crime scenery. An actively intoxicated water source—such as the pond in the picture above—is sure to spread toxicity in ways that a criminal designer and property manager had no thought of, or worse, cared little about. Otherwise, maybe their thinking is much more subtle, and entirely anti-life, such as:
“If we let mosquitoes breed, we will inevitably let a whole aquaculture ecosystem spawn full of mosquito predators on up the food chain, such as fish and frogs, and that is absolutely not acceptable. We dare not let mosquitoes be part of an ecosystem that will control their numbers far more efficiently and regularly than our own chemical industry allies.”
Not all corporate campuses will attempt the false glamour of a perpetually poisoned pond. Usually they will contribute their dose of waste and toxicity by implementing a water projecting fountain and be satisfied with chemically treated lawns and deserted mulch beds. With precaution, visit one of these campuses to analyze the health threats for yourself. These crimes are actively happening around us, whether we see them or not, and whether the laws recognize them or not. Don’t hold your breath for any black-robed dishonors to rescue us and correctly judge this as a crime—we must be the judges! We must figure out what is appropriate remediation and justice before our own victimage becomes too great a burden and we need to rely on others to defend us. If not, the case studies will continue to pile up along with ecosystem carcasses.
Notes (correctly disordered):
2 – Concisely Conveying Cronnie Congressmen Cordially Condoning Corporate Campus Crimes (3C2) is an alternate title,though this article doesn’t remark on legislators and other representatives. However, this alternate title is still fitting, for it’s no lie that elected (and unelected) officials are implicitly involved in allowing particular industrial and commercial practices to go unchecked, practices ironically that they sign bills to outlaw private citizens from undertaking. I know some people are upset that corporations have the same legal status as actual people, but I think they’d be more upset if they realized corporations have a higher legal status than us. A two tier system has been created with individuals placed at the sewer level.
1 – Country Club (2C1)could be looked at as a euphemism for country clubbed down by modern industrial civilization. This relates to another, more sinister euphemism pointed out by Noam Chomsky: the Defense Department was the new title given to the War Department after WW2; the only thing that changed (other than the name) was the increasing amount of wars the USA would become involved with.
I “meme’ized” this picture:
and here’s another, arguably related: