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Tag: Gary Bender

Gary Bender Adds His Thoughts On This Post: Business ‘Ethics’ Wrong Focus – Really?

Gary Bender is a friend of mine and more than that, he is well read and thinks. So I enjoyed his comment and share it with you.

Gary Bender writes –

Mr. DiLorenzo writes “Dishonest business people will be punished financially as customers cater to their competitors while suppliers refuse to do business with them. In cases of negligence, such as the BP oil spill, chief executives often lose their jobs, the company is sued, and the firm’s stock price plummets, as was in fact the case with BP. Such market feedback mechanisms do not guarantee ethical behavior, but they do reward it with customer loyalty – and profits. No such feedback mechanism exists in government, which is where much larger ethical problems exist.”

This is the usual nonsense we hear from the teabaggers and other blame-the-Democrats-I-mean-government right-wingers.

No, customers are not watchdogs. They buy for complex reasons that have little to do with the ethics of merchants. Likewise, suppliers sell to anyone.

As far as malfeasance, BP will continue to make huge profits long after the gulf spill is forgotten. Sure, a few people will lose their jobs, probably fewer than lost their lives in the explosion, and stock prices will rebound. Those who are intelligent enough to invest for the longterm will barely notice the stock dip.

It is in government where the people do have a feedback mechanism – their votes. Unfortunately, in the American two-party system, greedy capitalist are able to have more influence on government than the voters. Mr. DiLorenzo is one of those who would like to see more corporate influence on government. I believe that Benito Mussolini called the marriage of government and corporations fascism.

To suggest that capitalism and government are disjoint in America is disingenuous. To suggest that greed in capitalism is of no concern is downright evil.

Is Greed (Or Avarice) A Deadly (Death Dealing!) Sin?

Gary Bender, a friend of mine, has added his thoughts to a previous blog post of mine talking about telecommunications companies, law breaking and greed. He cites books I am unaware of and an author who I shall have to pay attention to. It is pleasure to present the thoughts of Gary Bender.

Oliver James, author of Affluenza: How to Be Successful and Stay Sane (2007) and The Selfish Capitalist (2008) ‘asserts that there is a correlation between the increasing nature of affluenza and the resulting increase in material inequality: the more unequal a society, the greater the unhappiness of its citizens’ and that ‘Selfish Capitalism is a particularly aggressive form of capitalism found predominantly in English speaking nations – the US, UK, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. James argues that in these countries, around 23% of the population has suffered from some form of mental illness such as depression or anxiety in the last 12 months compared to an average of 11.5% of German, Italian, French, Belgian, Spanish and Dutch people who, James argues, live under a system of social or unselfish capitalism.’ He has been criticized for including Japan, which has a high suicide rate, as an unselfish capitalist state.

Besides the points you make, James, on ethics, there is sound scientific evidence to show that avarice is, indeed, a deadly sin.

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