Nobody’s Business, Inc.
I wrote this in about 1982, but with Andy Romanoff’s article about the Hog Farm, I thought I’d share it. I gave a copy to Barry (The Fish) Melton in Seattle once, long after he left Country Joe and the Fish and became a defense lawyer working on death penalty cases. He appreciated the attempt to articulate the anarchist nature of Wavy Gravy’s Nobody for President Campaign in a fileable legal document.
Articles of Incorporation
Nobody’s Business, Inc.
This document is intended to define the interface between a loosely knit group of people who think of themselves as the Nobody for President Committee, and the legal and financial institutions that these people encounter in their lawful perpetration of mirth.
As such, this serves two purposes: first, it is a legal document — one of those binding fictions that, in the normal course of events, would remain irrelevant, but nevertheless exists as a reference reality, should any situation arise that wants a legal, on-paper solution. Second, it is written to be clear and at the same time advance the cause of legal humor, that Justice may see the light and know that Truth is served by Laughter.
Article 1: Name
The name of this corporation shall be NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED, hereinafter referred to as NOBODY wherever appropriate.
Article 2: Duration
NOBODY shall endure forever, or until such legal fictions are no longer necessary, whichever comes first.
Article 3: Purposes
NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED is a non-profit, mutual benefit corporation organized under the Nonprofit Mutual Benefit Corporation Law of the State of California. The purpose of this corporation is to engage in any lawful act or activity for which a corporation may be organized under the above cited sections of the law, including, but not limited to:
1. The lawful perpetration of mirth in all its forms.
2. Changing the world through humor, because truth is served by laughter.
3. Running Nobody for President every four years or as the need arises.
Article 4: Membership
Membership shall be limited to those human beings to whom each and every existing member of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED can say truthfully:
I CAN LOOK YOU IN THE EYES WHENEVER I WANT.
WE MAY NOT KNOW WHAT WE ARE GOING FOR, BUT WE ARE GOING FOR IT.
I TRUST YOU WITH THE MONEY THAT WE HOLD IN COMMON FOR NOBODY.
Membership confers no special rights or privileges upon members beyond those defined in Article 7: Decision-Making.
The name and initiation date of each member shall be recorded in NOBODY’S Bylaws.
Article 5: Board of Directors
The members of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED shall serve together as the Board of Directors pursuant to Section 7310 of the Corporations Code of California.
Article 6: NOBODY’S Money
A. NOBODY owes everybody nothing, for it out of nothing that all good things arise.
B. Nobody understands the implications of the following:
a. Suffering is the root of all evil.
b. Attachment is the source of all suffering.
c. Ledgering is the handmaiden of attachment.
d. Money is a method of ledgering human energy.
e. Therefore, it is often said, somewhat in error, that money is the root of all evil.
C. NOBODY is not afraid of money nor the lack thereof.
D. In the absence of an explicit agreement calling for the payment of a stated sum of money for a good or service, no action by a member of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED shall be interpreted or construed as creating a debt owed that person by NOBODY.
E. Nor shall any action by a member of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED be interpreted or construed as conferring equity or ownership of equity in NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED on that or any other person.
F. All of the preceding notwithstanding, NOBODY may contract for goods and services and hire and pay for the labor of members and non-members alike.
Article 7: Decision-Making
Decisions pertaining to NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED shall be divided into two categories:
A. MINOR DECISIONS shall be made by consulting as many members as practical, depending on the severity, consequence, and immediacy of the matter under consideration.
B. MAJOR DECISIONS require the consultation of every member of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED by mail, in person, or by witnessed telephone conversation.
a. Any member may designate any decision affecting NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED as a MAJOR DECISION.
b. Failure of any member to respond within a reasonable length of time to a request for input on a proposed MAJOR DECISION shall result in that person forfeiting his/her right to a say in that decision. In the absence of any information on which to base what a reasonable length of time would be, 15 (fifteen) business days from the time of mailing of a written request for input to a member’s last known address, shall be interpreted as a reasonable length of time.
c. CONSENSUS shall be the basis on which all MAJOR and MINOR DECISIONS shall be made.
Article 8: Bylaws
The cumulative written record of MAJOR DECISIONS of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED shall function as the Bylaws of the Corporation. Should any conflict arise between two or more MAJOR DECISIONS, recorded in the Bylaws, the decision most recent in time shall prevail.
Article 9: Annual Meeting
The Annual Meeting of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED shall take place on April 1 of each year, the day known as April Fools Day, and shall consist of whatever arcane rights and rituals as NOBODY deems appropriate.
Article 10: Separation
A member of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED may become separated from NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED at any time as a MAJOR DECISION of the remaining members of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED, provided that:
A. The member in question must be given written notice, signed by all members, stating the intended separation, and the reasons for the separation, at least thirty (30) days prior to the date on which the decision is made final.
B. The member in question’s written response, if any, to the intended separation shall be distributed to all other members in a timely manner.
C. The member in question shall be given an oral hearing before as many members as wish to attend, before the decision becomes final.
Nothing in this section shall be construed as limiting a member’s right to resign at any time.
Article 11: Dissolution
Upon dissolution, the assets of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED shall be distributed as follows:
A. All debts to non-members shall be satisfied.
B. All agreed-upon debts to members shall be satisfied
C. The remaining assets of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED shall be transferred to any land trust, non-profit organization or group of individuals that the membership of NOBODY’S BUSINESS, INCORPORATED trust to carry on the work.
Article 12: Amendments to Articles of Incorporation
Amendments to the Articles of Incorporation shall be made as any other MAJOR DECISION and shall be come effective upon filing with the Secretary of State of the State of California.