Originally Posted by litterbug
Cummings be a going concern, following his own individual interests independent of Powdr, especially if he can do it through ownership of a "crown jewel" of the industry? Is it possible that his minority shareholders are getting fractious and limiting his will? Could he feel bogged down and want something of his own to run however he wants and leave as his legacy, instead of whatever his position as a Powdr majority shareholder permits? Could the corporate formalities be too constraining? Could he want to get a foothold on the other side of the Wasatch One scheme? Or could he just want to get out from under some idiot flunky's mistake? I don't know; maybe it's my father's tumultuous and adventurous business career that makes all this seem unremarkable. At any rate, it certainly isn't the first time a businessman turned some of his attention away from a troubled entity to work on a fresh challenge, and businessmen largely stay in the same industry, especially as they age. It all seems like just bidness to me. Messy bidness, full of potential conflict and drama, but bidness just the same.
Still, we insist that this rich asshat has got to be eating puppies and clubbing baby seals in his spare time. Baseless speculation, repeated over and over, strengthens a fevered mentality where a cloud of suspicions makes new allegations seem more credible even after the suspicions are debunked. If you step back, it doesn't make sense. Of course Cummings could be illegally screwing everyone, but let's hear one single piece of supportable and relevant evidence of it, or at least one provable fact supporting an element of an alter ego situation. C'mon, don't be shy, show us!
That's not where I'm heading with this
- I just like the legal theory stuff. What struck me just reading this thread was it sounds like the individual and not the corp just listening to people banter back and forth.
I think you asked a perfect question: why shouldn't Cumming be a going concern?
The obvious answer is mortality (a going concern can't die), but in this era of dynastic wealth, where individual wealth as passed down through generations looks more like GDP than net worth, what is a going concern (the dynasty?) And to what extent should it be protected from liability in that form?
I'm not trying dredge up either evidence or make accusations against anybody. It just strikes me as an interesting potential case for a large creditor to pursue if it goes down that way. Cumming > Powdr in terms of capitalization and other financial factors. Billionaires operating within a company they capitalized (via family wealth if not personally) as chief officer can be viewed as alter ego almost by the definition of their financial standing, chief executive role, and ability to continue to capitalize the entity based on unusual circumstances or let it fail.
I wonder if over time the legal theory isn't going to evolve to address this concept. I don't think owning a business should make you liable for what the business does, but then a corporation is different from a sole proprietorship for reasons that go beyond limited liability. Certain individuals are now so dominant financially (becoming more powerful than governments) that running what amounts to hobby corporations based on inherited wealth frays the concept of limited liability. It is an alter ego, and it is protected anyway.
These concepts really weren't built for this reality of dynastic wealth, and I just think it is interesting when you see cases that could conceptually challenge how far limited liability should extend. We've been giving corporations the rights of people, we might consider giving the people who run them more liability in kind.
Just musings, didn't mean anything else by it.