Big Business
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30-03-2012, 05:40 AM
Big Business
Something I don't understand is the attitude people seem to have to big businesses.

I hear people all the time saying that various private companies aren't doing any good in the world. So what? Private companies don't exist to do good, they exist to turn a profit. That is their purpose.

Take a supermarket for example. It doesn't exist to make people's shopping more convenient, it exists to make money and to make shopping more convenient is how it does that.

Final thing to say is this isn't a problem with the world. It's the way the world should be, why would anyone open a business that doesn't break even, never will, but keep it running because it's doing good? That's what charities are for.

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30-03-2012, 07:19 AM
RE: Big Business
You see nothing wrong with society that relies on charities? Then you haven't thought about what a society is.

The problem with big business is not that it "doesn't do good in the world", but that it does harm to the world, and downloads the cost of that harm on the government, to which it tries very hard to avoid paying its dues. Not a supermarket so much (though you might examine its buying and shipping practices for irregularities) but - oh, just for instance - an oil company....

It's not the mean god I have trouble with - it's the people who worship a mean god.
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30-03-2012, 07:24 AM
RE: Big Business
(30-03-2012 07:19 AM)Peterkin Wrote:  You see nothing wrong with society that relies on charities? Then you haven't thought about what a society is.

The problem with big business is not that it "doesn't do good in the world", but that it does harm to the world, and downloads the cost of that harm on the government, to which it tries very hard to avoid paying its dues. Not a supermarket so much (though you might examine its buying and shipping practices for irregularities) but - oh, just for instance - an oil company....
I'm not saying we should have to rely on charities. I'm highlighting that most people seem to thing big businesses should be like charities they don't have to give anything to.

Please can you elaborate on what harm your average business does to the world? And not just one type of business, I mean your average business. All big companies get labelled with this stigma, not just ones in certain industries.

Best and worst of Ferdinand .....
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Ferdinand: We don't really say 'theist' in Alabama. Here, you're either a Christian, or you're from Afghanistan and we fucking hate you.
Worst
Ferdinand: Everyone from British is so, like, fucking retarded.
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30-03-2012, 07:51 AM
RE: Big Business
Examples of harm by industry:
Dumping toxic waste in land and water.
Poisoning and endangering employees.
Enormous amounts of garbage.
Emissions from vehicles and factories.
Using up resources.
Cutting down forests; bulldozing meadows; diverting rivers.
Destroying wildlife and habitat.
Putting small farmers and local merchants out of business.
Selling unhealthy products; falsifying reports; suppressing evidence; persecuting whistle-blowers.
Using government-sponsored research for private gain.
Buying up real estate and putting people out of their homes.
Production of shoddy merchandise, planned obsolescence, instant junk.
Misleading, fallacious and deceitful advertising.
Dominating an entire town, then abandoning it for cheaper labour.
Use of public roads, infrastructure, energy and services without compensation.
Price-fixing and monopolies; insider trading and collusion.
Hiding and exporting taxable profit.
Bailouts.
Usury.
Extortion.
Political leverage.

It's not the mean god I have trouble with - it's the people who worship a mean god.
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30-03-2012, 09:01 AM
RE: Big Business
Is this supposed to be a philosophical discussion?

I'm going to assume so due to it's placement in philosophy.

So philosophically should a big business have a conscience?
No they aren't alive. But should we treat them like they are? No, because they aren't and never will be.
They are reflections on societal values.
Society has no interest in saving the world, or in helping others. Individuals do, but society as a whole wants nothing more than to survive. It will do whatever it takes to do so. Society is cutthroat. That's one of the reasons there is an emphasis placed on popularity. To fit in even when logic would dictate otherwise.

Would it be nice if everyone felt like saving the world was a good idea? Hell yes. But even I don't want to save every body, so who am I to talk?

"I think of myself as an intelligent, sensitive human being with the soul of a clown which always forces me to blow it at the most important moments." -Jim Morrison
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30-03-2012, 11:08 AM (This post was last modified: 30-03-2012 12:07 PM by Hughsie.)
RE: Big Business
(30-03-2012 09:01 AM)lucradis Wrote:  Is this supposed to be a philosophical discussion?

I'm going to assume so due to it's placement in philosophy.

So philosophically should a big business have a conscience?
No they aren't alive. But should we treat them like they are? No, because they aren't and never will be.
They are reflections on societal values.
Society has no interest in saving the world, or in helping others. Individuals do, but society as a whole wants nothing more than to survive. It will do whatever it takes to do so. Society is cutthroat. That's one of the reasons there is an emphasis placed on popularity. To fit in even when logic would dictate otherwise.

Would it be nice if everyone felt like saving the world was a good idea? Hell yes. But even I don't want to save every body, so who am I to talk?
I wasn't sure where to put it, this seemed like the closest I could get to relevant.

Peterkin Wrote:Examples of harm by industry:
Dumping toxic waste in land and water.
Poisoning and endangering employees.
Enormous amounts of garbage.
Emissions from vehicles and factories.
Using up resources.
Cutting down forests; bulldozing meadows; diverting rivers.
Destroying wildlife and habitat.
Putting small farmers and local merchants out of business.
Selling unhealthy products; falsifying reports; suppressing evidence; persecuting whistle-blowers.
Using government-sponsored research for private gain.
Buying up real estate and putting people out of their homes.
Production of shoddy merchandise, planned obsolescence, instant junk.
Misleading, fallacious and deceitful advertising.
Dominating an entire town, then abandoning it for cheaper labour.
Use of public roads, infrastructure, energy and services without compensation.
Price-fixing and monopolies; insider trading and collusion.
Hiding and exporting taxable profit.
Bailouts.

Usury.
Extortion.
Political leverage.

I don't believe that most companies are taking part in most of that stuff.

Garbage, emissions and use of resources are unavoidable and we are all to blame on that front.

I also don't think many of these things are harm.
Small businesses going out of business is how a competitive market works. That is not a problem with the world.
If products are of low quality then people will stop buying them. If people don't then that it's their fault.
We have the ASA to prevent misleading advertising.
Abandoning a town for cheaper labour is common sense. I wouldn't pay someone £10 an hour for something other people are happy to do for £8. Why would anyone? Who's fault is it if people price themselves out of the job market?

Best and worst of Ferdinand .....
Best
Ferdinand: We don't really say 'theist' in Alabama. Here, you're either a Christian, or you're from Afghanistan and we fucking hate you.
Worst
Ferdinand: Everyone from British is so, like, fucking retarded.
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30-03-2012, 11:10 AM
RE: Big Business
I think I'm growing a crush on you Hughsie. Heart

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.”

-Mark Twain
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30-03-2012, 12:06 PM
RE: Big Business
(30-03-2012 09:01 AM)lucradis Wrote:  Is this supposed to be a philosophical discussion?

I'm going to assume so due to it's placement in philosophy.

So philosophically should a big business have a conscience?
No they aren't alive. But should we treat them like they are? No, because they aren't and never will be.
They are reflections on societal values.
Society has no interest in saving the world, or in helping others. Individuals do, but society as a whole wants nothing more than to survive. It will do whatever it takes to do so. Society is cutthroat. That's one of the reasons there is an emphasis placed on popularity. To fit in even when logic would dictate otherwise.

Would it be nice if everyone felt like saving the world was a good idea? Hell yes. But even I don't want to save every body, so who am I to talk?
Some individuals care about the planet and the lives of their prodigy. Most Individuals within the US only care about greed, and how much money they can make for themselves no matter the impact on anyone or anything else.

(30-03-2012 09:01 AM)lucradis Wrote:  Would it be nice if everyone felt like saving the world was a good idea? Hell yes. But even I don't want to save every body, so who am I to talk?
This is why the govt exists, so we can do the right thing, even if its against the norms of society.

Like
Fire Dept
Police Station
Health care
etc...
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30-03-2012, 12:09 PM
RE: Big Business
(30-03-2012 11:10 AM)germanyt Wrote:  I think I'm growing a crush on you Hughsie. Heart
Haha, I am pretty awesome Wink.

To be honest I could almost reciprocate it when I read your posts in the Politics section Big Grin.

Best and worst of Ferdinand .....
Best
Ferdinand: We don't really say 'theist' in Alabama. Here, you're either a Christian, or you're from Afghanistan and we fucking hate you.
Worst
Ferdinand: Everyone from British is so, like, fucking retarded.
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30-03-2012, 12:14 PM
RE: Big Business
(30-03-2012 07:19 AM)Peterkin Wrote:  You see nothing wrong with society that relies on charities? Then you haven't thought about what a society is.

The problem with big business is not that it "doesn't do good in the world", but that it does harm to the world, and downloads the cost of that harm on the government, to which it tries very hard to avoid paying its dues. Not a supermarket so much (though you might examine its buying and shipping practices for irregularities) but - oh, just for instance - an oil company....
This is absolutely true, and it doesn't even have to be pollution. I was reading a study the other day that showed whenever Wal-Mart moved into an area, it actually made that area poorer. They toss countless number of people out of work, and then hire them back at minimum wage. So many areas throughout the country have refused to let wal-mart open up shop in their neighborhood.

Obviously this is not a singular anomaly, you can bet it happens in just about every other BIG business as well. They make absurd amounts of money by making others poorer, then get their lobbyist to blame to govt.
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