Monday, December 31, 2012

Kudos to John Mackey

I was reading my new issue of Texas Monthly (thank you Mimi) when I noticed a brief interview with John Mackey, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Whole Foods, promoting the benefits of capitalism. 

"Two hundred years ago, 85 percent of the people on planet Earth lived on less than $1 a day, in today’s dollars. Today that’s down to about 16 percent. For 40,000 years the average human lifespan was 30 years or less. And in the past 150 years, we’ve gradually been able to raise that up to 68.9 years. Almost the entire planet was illiterate throughout history, and now we’re down to 15 percent. That is due to business. That is due to capitalism."

He further defends capitalism and describes how capitalism should operate with a higher purpose.

"It has not yet gotten credit. Instead, it’s generally portrayed as selfish and greedy. So we need a new narrative and a new ethical foundation based on a higher purpose than just making money. Not that there’s anything wrong with making money. My body needs to produce red blood cells for me to live, but the purpose of my body is not to produce red blood cells. Business cannot exist without making money, but that’s not its purpose. Its purpose should refer back to the contribution it’s making
to the good of society."

Agree or disagree, but it is welcome to see a business leader with the courage to defend capitalism in any form.

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