World’s Worst

_Multinational Monitor_’s annual nomination of the Ten Worst Corporations – styled ‘Enemies of the Future’ – for the year 2000 is as follows:

*Aventis (France)*: ‘Making human guinea pigs.’ For contaminating Taco Bell brand taco shells sold in grocery stores by Kraft, as well as many other foods, with genetically modified StarLink corn.

*British American Tobacco (Britain)*: ‘Smuggler of death.’ For engineering a worldwide smuggling scheme to cut the price of cigarettes and increase consumption, with extensive efforts in Latin America and Asia.

*BP/AMOCO (US/Britain)*: ‘Lawbreaker.’ For illegal disposal of hazardous waste on Alaska’s North Slope.

*Doubleclick (US)*: ‘Cookie Crook.’ For implanting electronic ‘cookies’ – surveillance files – on the hard drives of users’ computers without their knowledge and gaining the capacity to combine this data with identifiable personal consumer information.

*Ford/Firestone (US)*: ‘Reckless homicide.’ For at least 150 deaths around the world linked to tread separation by Firestone tyres on Ford cars, and not recalling the products after learning of the hazard.

*Glaxo/Wellcome (Britain)*: ‘Patents over people.’ For blocking worldwide distribution of cheap, generic versions of HIV/AIDS and other drugs.

*Lockheed Martin (US)*: ‘Testing its pollutant on humans.’ For conducting large-scale tests of percholate – a toxic contaminant from rocket fuel, frequently found in water supplies in southern California – to avoid stricter standards and save millions of dollars in clean-up costs.

*Philips Petroleum (US)*: ‘Deadly employer.’ For third fatal accident in 11 years at plastics plant in Pasadena, Texas.

*Smithfield Foods (US)*: ‘Pig Out.’ For consolidation of the hog market to detriment of family farmers, and spreading factory farms.

*Titan International (US)*: ‘Union buster.’ For unlawfully denying protected labour rights to workers at two tyre and wheel factories where workers have been on strike for two years.

Multinational Monitor

mag cover This article is from the April 2001 issue of New Internationalist.
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