Business suffers criticism in many quarters of the public debate, sometimes for valid reasons, sometimes for false reasons. Some who criticize business have well-reasoned arguments, others are false fronts for ideologies or groups who want power for themselves.
Suppose one wanted to provide the public with a simple argument for business. I heard such recently in re-watching the fine old movie, Sabrina, starring Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn and William Holden. It's a great movie, both funny and serious and has a happy ending. The setting is the US - New York City - in the 1950s.
Linus Larrabie (Humphrey Bogart), the older son who operates the family business, explains to his younger brother, David (William Holden), why business is a good.
Linus: Making money isn't the main point of business. Money is a by-product.
David: What's the main objective? Power?
Linus: Ah! That's become a dirty word.
David: What's the urge? You're going into plastics. What will that prove?
Linus: Prove? Nothing much. A new product has been found, something of use to the world. A new industry moves into an undeveloped area. Factories go up, machines go in and you're in business.
It's coincidental that people who've never seen a dime now have a dollar and barefooted kids wear shoes and have their faces washed.
What's wrong with an urge that gives people libraries, hospitals, baseball diamonds and movies on a Saturday night?
There is nothing inherently sordid about business - it can be a noble activity, if conducted with values and virtues and honor. Let's defend business - good business.
Word of the Day
"Lugubrious" - adjective [$10]
Lugubrious means 1. mournful esp.: exaggeratedly or affectedly mournful.; 2. dismal.
Sentence: Why let a lugubrious outlook oppress your psyche? The world will be fine: people inherently want to improve their lives and that desire will carry the world to a new prosperity ... if the hogs and pharisees are stopped from enthroning a new aristocracy.