Reader (and fellow academic) Richard Samuelson writes:
I just saw your post on the question of "corporate conscience." Very interesting.
While teaching the Bank of the U.S. controversy last year, I stumbled over this bit from Madison. I pass it along in case it might be of use to you.
http://oll.libertyfund.org/?option=com_staticxt&staticfile=show.php%3Ftitle=875&chapter=63865&layout=html&Itemid=27"As a charter of incorporation the bill creates an artificial person previously not existing in law. It confers important civil rights and attributes which could not otherwise be claimed. "That the Bank, as a corporation, was a person in law, was one of Madison's objections.And remember that Tocqueville listed business corporations alongside the other NGOs that constitute civil society.