Profit Oriented Quotes

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We must rapidly begin the shift from a "thing-oriented" society to a "person-oriented" society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.
Martin Luther King Jr.
In the West we have a tendency to be profit-oriented, where everything is measured according to the results and we get caught up in being more and more active to generate results. In the East -- especially in India -- I find that people are more content to just be, to just sit around under a banyan tree for half a day chatting to each other. We Westerners would probably call that wasting time. But there is value to it. Being with someone, listening wihtout a clock and without anticipation of results, teaches us about love. The success of love is in the loving -- it is not in the result of loving. These words, taken from the book A Simple Path, are the words of one of the Missionaries of Charity Sisters, not of Mother Teresa.
Mother Teresa
He who is educated by anxiety is educated by possibility… When such a person, therefore, goes out from the school of possibility, and knows more thoroughly than a child knows the alphabet that he demands of life absolutely nothing, and that terror, perdition, annihilation, dwell next door to every man, and has learned the profitable lesson that every dread which alarms may the next instant become a fact, he will then interpret reality differently…
Søren Kierkegaard (The Concept of Anxiety: A Simple Psychologically Oriented Deliberation in View of the Dogmatic Problem of Hereditary Sin)
Accept nothing as final until you have proven it; but, if you are wise, you will profit by the advice and experience of those who have gone before.
William Walker Atkinson (Fourteen Lessons in Yogi Philosophy and Oriental Occultism)
We need to reform our funeral industry, introducing new practices that aren’t so profit-oriented, and that do more to include the family. But we cannot begin to reform—or even question!—our death systems when we act like little Jean de Brébeufs, falsely convinced we have it right while all these “other people” are disrespectful and barbarous.
Caitlin Doughty (From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death)
The result is that modern man knows himself only in so far as he can become conscious of himself—a capacity largely dependent on environmental conditions, knowledge and control of which necessitated or suggested certain modifications of his original instinctive tendencies. His consciousness therefore orients itself chiefly by observing and investigating the world around him, and it is to the latter’s peculiarities that he must adapt his psychic and technical resources. This task is so exacting, and its fulfilment so profitable, that he forgets himself in the process, losing sight of his instinctual nature and putting his own conception of himself in place of his real being.
C.G. Jung (The Undiscovered Self/Symbols and the Interpretation of Dreams)
Romantic love is irrational rather than rational, gratuitous rather than profit-oriented, organic rather than utilitarian, private rather than public. In short, romantic love seems to evade the conventional categories within which capitalism has been conceived.
Eva Illouz (Consuming the Romantic Utopia: Love and the Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism)
We need to reform our funeral industry, introducing new practices that aren't so profit-oriented, and that do more to include the family. But we cannot begin to reform—or even question!-our death systems when we act like little Jean de Brébeufs, falsely convinced we have it right while all these "other people" are disrespectful and barbarous. This dismissive attitude can be found in places you'd never expect. Lonely Planet, the largest guidebook publisher in the world, included the idyllic Trunyan cemetery in their book on visiting Bali. In Trunyan, the villagers weave bamboo cages for their dead to decompose in, and then stack the skulls and bones out in the lush green landscape. Lonely Planet, instead of explaining the meaning behind these ancient customs, advised wise travelers to "skip the ghoulish spectacle.
Caitlin Doughty (From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death)
The essential ingredients of our propaganda model, or set of news "filters,", fall under the following headings: (1) the size, concentrated ownership, owner wealth, and profit orientation of the dominant mass-media firms; (2) advertising as the primary income source of the mass media; (3) the reliance of the media on information provided by government, business, and "experts" funded and approved by these primary sources and agents of power; (4) "flak" as a means of disciplining the media; and (5) "anticommunism" as a national religion and control mechanism.
Edward S. Herman (Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media)
I arrived always at the same, disquieting place: the history of Western exploration in the New World in every quarter is a confrontation with an image of distant wealth. Gold, furs, timber, whales, the Elysian Fields, the control of trade routes to the Orient—it all had to be verified, acquired, processed, allocated, and defended. And these far-flung enterprises had to be profitable, or be made to seem profitable, or be financed until they were. The task was wild, extraordinary. And it was complicated by the fact that people were living in North America when we arrived. Their title to the wealth had to be extinguished.
Barry Lopez (Arctic Dreams)
The war propaganda is a sly instrument, and she seems to be very tricky, of course in a subtle manner, with her target-oriented agitations. She operates brainwashing of the people. I will give you the advice, to keep a distance, from these deceptiv irritations; she is a vicious tongue that wants to lead us with their statements, straight ahead into the abyss.
Kristian Goldmund Aumann
[W]e as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a “thing-oriented” society to a “person-oriented” society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are all incapable of being conquered.14
John W. Whitehead (Battlefield America: The War On the American People)
The gathering of information to control people is fundamental to any ruling power. As resistance to land acquisition and the new economic policies spreads across India, in the shadow of outright war in Central India, as a containment technique, India’s government has embarked on a massive biometrics program, perhaps one of the most ambitious and expensive information gathering projects in the world—the Unique Identification Number (UID). People don’t have clean drinking water, or toilets, or food, or money, but they will have election cards and UID numbers. Is it a coincidence that the UID project run by Nandan Nilekani, former CEO of Infosys, ostensibly meant to “deliver services to the poor,” will inject massive amounts of money into a slightly beleaguered IT industry?50 To digitize a country with such a large population of the illegitimate and “illegible”—people who are for the most part slum dwellers, hawkers, Adivasis without land records—will criminalize them, turning them from illegitimate to illegal. The idea is to pull off a digital version of the Enclosure of the Commons and put huge powers into the hands of an increasingly hardening police state. Nilekani’s technocratic obsession with gathering data is consistent with Bill Gates’s obsession with digital databases, numerical targets, and “scorecards of progress” as though it were a lack of information that is the cause of world hunger, and not colonialism, debt, and skewed profit-oriented corporate policy.51
Arundhati Roy (Capitalism: A Ghost Story)
So why aren’t more marketing companies targeting our age group? Why are there so many youth-oriented programs and advertisements on television today? Why are we being ignored? Don’t companies realize they are missing a huge market? Now granted, a visit to the local mall will show you there are a lot of teenagers hanging out there these days. But are they shopping? Are they spending money? No. They’re “hanging.” Contrary to what our skin might be doing, we members of the over-forty crowd don’t “hang.” We shop, and not just window shop either. We’re serious buyers. When we pick up an item and turn it over to see the price, we often carry it right on over to the checkout counter and pay for it. Why? Because we know the energy involved with picking up items. We don’t do it unless we’re committed.
Martha Bolton (Cooking With Hot Flashes: And Other Ways to Make Middle Age Profitable)
doing profitable and intrinsically significant work, of helping men and women to achieve independence from bosses, so that they may become their own employers, or members of a self-governing, co-operative group working for subsistence and a local market . . . this differently orientated technological progress (would result in) a progressive decentralisation of population, of political and economic power’.
Ernst F. Schumacher (Small Is Beautiful: A Study of Economics as if People Mattered)
The only way that I have seen to keep teenagers out of one another's arms is to give them a bigger, more wonderful goal to offset all the distractions common to their youth. For a young man, that goal should include preparing for a delightful and profitable career, doing something he really enjoys doing. For a young woman, it includes preparing to be the ideal wife, mother and administrative assistant such a passionate and goal-oriented young man will need
Gregg Harris (The Christian Home School)
But something changed in the 1980s, when Wall Street itself went from being a service industry - lucrative and powerful but still client centered and partner-oriented - to being an industry in its own right. Then, no longer tethered by the risk to their own money, these newly flush public companies, and many private ones that benefited from the efflorescence of money in the frothy public markets, started to think of themselves as product makers and profit centers in their own right. They started to expect excessive returns and outsized compensation, and they took on levels of risk that in time came to imperil the whole system because they were without fear of substantial personal loss.
Zachary Karabell (Inside Money: Brown Brothers Harriman and the American Way of Power)
Martin Luther King Jr. said, “I’m convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, the nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin to shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society…. When machines and computers, profit models and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.” The context in which Martin Luther King made this comment was a pivotal point in his own career. This is his “Beyond Vietnam” speech, after which virtually all of his former allies turned against him. He was isolated after giving this speech.
Noam Chomsky (Consequences of Capitalism: Manufacturing Discontent and Resistance)
Say what you will of religion, but draw applicable conclusions and comparisons to reach a consensus. Religion = Reli = Prefix to Relic, or an ancient item. In days of old, items were novel, and they inspired devotion to the divine, and in the divine. Now, items are hypnotizing the masses into submission. Take Christ for example. When he broke bread in the Bible, people actually ate, it was useful to their bodies. Compare that to the politics, governments and corrupt, bumbling bureacrats and lobbyists in the economic recession of today. When they "broke bread", the economy nearly collapsed, and the benefactors thereof were only a select, decadent few. There was no bread to be had, so they asked the people for more! Breaking bread went from meaning sharing food and knowledge and wealth of mind and character, to meaning break the system, being libelous, being unaccountable, and robbing the earth. So they married people's paychecks to the land for high ransoms, rents and mortgages, effectively making any renter or landowner either a slave or a slave master once more. We have higher class toys to play with, and believe we are free. The difference is, the love of profit has the potential, and has nearly already enslaved all, it isn't restriced by culture anymore. Truth is not religion. Governments are religions. Truth does not encourage you to worship things. Governments are for profit. Truth is for progress. Governments are about process. When profit goes before progress, the latter suffers. The truest measurement of the quality of progress, will be its immediate and effective results without the aid of material profit. Quality is meticulous, it leaves no stone unturned, it is thorough and detail oriented. It takes its time, but the results are always worth the investment. Profit is quick, it is ruthless, it is unforgiving, it seeks to be first, but confuses being first with being the best, it is long scale suicidal, it is illusory, it is temporary, it is vastly unfulfilling. It breaks families, and it turns friends. It is single track minded, and small minded as well. Quality, would never do that, my friends. Ironic how dealing and concerning with money, some of those who make the most money, and break other's monies are the most unaccountable. People open bank accounts, over spend, and then expect to be held "unaccountable" for their actions. They even act innocent and unaccountable. But I tell you, everything can and will be counted, and accounted for. Peace can be had, but people must first annhilate the love of items, over their own kind.
Justin Kyle McFarlane Beau
Look back at history. Look at any great system of ethics, from the Orient up. Didn't they all preach the sacrifice of personal joy? Under all the complications of verbiage, haven't they all had a single leitmotif: sacrifice, renunciation, self-denial? Haven't you been able to catch their theme song — 'Give up, give up, give up, give up'? Look at the moral atmosphere of today. Everything enjoyable, from cigarettes to sex to ambition to the profit motive, is considered depraved or sinful. Just prove that a thing makes men happy — and you've damned it. That's how far we've come. We've tied happiness to guilt. And we've got mankind by the throat. Throw your first-born into a sacrificial furnace — lie on a bed of nails — go into the desert to mortify the flesh — don't dance — don't go to the movies on Sunday — don't try to get rich — don't smoke — don't drink. It's all the same line. The great line. Fools think that taboos of this nature are just nonsense. Something left over, old-fashioned. But there's always a purpose in nonsense. Don't bother to examine a folly — ask yourself only what it accomplishes. Every system of ethics that preached sacrifice grew into a world power and ruled millions of men. Of course, you must dress it up. You must tell people that they'll achieve a superior kind of happiness by giving up everything that makes them happy. You don't have to be too clear about it. Use big vague words. 'Universal Harmony' — 'Eternal Spirit' — 'Divine Purpose' — 'Nirvana' — 'Paradise' — 'Racial Supremacy' — 'The Dictatorship of the Proletariat.' Internal corruption, Peter. That's the oldest one of all. The farce has been going on for centuries and men still fall for it. Yet the test should be so simple: just listen to any prophet and if you hear him speak of sacrifice — run. Run faster than from a plague. It stands to reason that where there's sacrifice, there's someone collecting sacrificial offerings. Where there's service, there's someone being served. The man who speaks to you of sacrifice, speaks of slaves and masters. And intends to be the master. But if ever you hear a man telling you that you must be happy, that it's your natural right, that your first duty is to yourself — that will be the man who's not after your soul. That will be the man who has nothing to gain from you. But let him come and you'll scream your empty heads off, howling that he's a selfish monster. So the racket is safe for many, many centuries.
Ayn Rand (The Fountainhead)
It was a great moral improvement when men ceased to kill or eat their fellowmen, and merely made them slaves. A similar development on a larger scale may be seen today, when a nation victorious in war no longer exterminates the enemy, but enslaves it with indemnities. Once slavery had been established and had proved profitable, it was extended by condemning to it defaulting debtors and obstinate criminals, and by raids undertaken specifically to capture slaves. War helped to make slavery, and slavery helped to make war.
Will Durant (Our Oriental Heritage (Story of Civilization 1))
An employee-oriented culture that focuses on real relationships with each other instead of a purely profit-oriented sales and earnings culture, as we find in the majority of companies today. An inspiring management culture that does not focus purely on the use of manpower but on the development of each individual employee’s potential. An appreciative and inspiring environment that allows each individual, the entire team, and ultimately the entire company to grow beyond itself.
Lars Behrendt (GET REAL INNOVATION)
In transforming natural environments into artificial form, the United States is the most advanced country in the world. This is not an accident. It is inherent in our economic system. To the capitalist, profit-oriented mind, there is no outrage so great as the existence of some unmediated nook or cranny of creation which has not been converted into a new form that can then be sold for money. This is because in the act of converting the natural into the artificial, something with no inherent economic value becomes “productive” in the capitalist sense. An uninhabited desert is “nonproductive” unless it can be mined for uranium or irrigated for farms or covered with tracts of homes. A forest of uncut trees is nonproductive. A piece of land which has not been built upon is nonproductive. Coal or oil that remains in the ground is nonproductive. Animals living wildly are nonproductive. Virtually any land, any space, any material, any time that remains in an original, unprocessed, unconverted form is an outrage to the sensibilities of the capitalist mind. Iron, tungsten, trees, oil, sulphur, jaguars and open space are searched out and transformed because transformation creates economic benefits for the transformers. In economics this transformation has a name: “value added.” Value added derives from all the processes that alter a raw material from something which has no intrinsic economic value to something which does. Each change in form, say, from iron ore in the ground to iron or steel to car to car which is heavily advertised adds value to the material. The only raw materials which have intrinsic economic value before processing are gold and silver. This is only because people have agreed on these values in order to define a value for paper money, which certainly has no intrinsic value. It is, then, the nature of profit seeking to convert as much as possible of what has not been processed and exists in its own right into something which has the potential for economic gain.
Jerry Mander (Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television)
One of the greatest challenges facing societies worldwide is how best to link for public purposes the dynamism of markets, the public interested-oriented expertise of government agencies and the passion and commitment of the not-for-profit sector.
Robert F. Durant
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Nous souhaitons de toutes nos forces que les révolutions, les guerres et les insurrections coloniales viennent anéantir cette civilisation occidentale dont vous défendez jusqu’en Orient la vermine et nous appelons cette destruction comme l’état de choses le moins inacceptable pour l’esprit. (...) Nous saisissons cette occasion pour nous désolidariser publiquement de tout ce qui est français, en paroles et en actions. Nous déclarons trouver la trahison et tout ce qui, d’une façon ou d’une autre, peut nuire à la sûreté de l’Etat beaucoup plus conciliable avec la poésie que la vente de « grosses quantités de lard » pour le compte d’une nation de porcs et de chiens. C’est une singulière méconnaissance des facultés propres et des possibilités de l’esprit qui fait périodiquement rechercher leur salut à des goujats de votre espèce dans une tradition catholique ou gréco-romaine. Le salut pour nous n’est nulle part. Nous tenons Rimbaud pour un homme qui a désespéré de son salut et dont l’oeuvre et la vie sont de purs témoignages de perdition. Catholicisme, classicisme gréco-romain, nous vous abandonnons à vos bondieuseries infâmes. Qu’elles vous profitent de toutes manières ; engraissez encore, crevez sous l’admiration et le respect de vos concitoyens. Ecrivez, priez et bavez ; nous réclamons le déshonneur de vous avoir traité une fois pour toutes de cuistre et de canaille.
André Breton
I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values,” said King. “We must rapidly begin the shift from a ‘thing-oriented’ society to a ‘person-oriented’ society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable
John Nichols (The "S" Word: A Short History of an American Tradition...Socialism)
China has undergone an enormous transformation. But because the political system remains unchanged, the great changes in the economic and social sphere have resulted in an unequal allocation of the fruits and costs of economic reform. The combined abuses under the exclusive profit orientation of a market economy and the untrammeled power of totalitarianism have created an endless supply of injustice, exacerbating discontent among the lower-class majority.
Yang Jisheng (Tombstone: The Great Chinese Famine, 1958-1962)
The ladder showed a listing of different lifestyles, which were prioritized based on market potential and profitability. ...The more desirable demographics were the least commitment oriented. The most highly valued demographic was the single adult with no children.
Patrick Ord (The Curtain - A Novel)
first-ever professional check. For writing and performing a smash hit routine on a national coast-to-coast radio program, I received the magnificent sum of seven dollars and fifty cents, less seventy-five cents commission to the Thomas Lee Artists’ Bureau (Tommy was Don Lee’s son). The thrill of leaving on our trip around the world was dampened considerably when Harrison Holliway asked me to do the character on a weekly basis. I was heartbroken, but I had to tell him that we were leaving in five days. The continuation of the great career that had begun that Monday would have to wait until my return. •   •   • Just a few words about our trip, which lasted for six interesting and delightful months. The cost, for the three of us, was just under five thousand dollars. In 1934 the only way to cross an ocean was by ship, and the seas were dotted with literally hundreds of vessels carrying their passengers and cargo from one end of the world to the other. Many lines provided ships to service the large and profitable business of transporting people and things from place to place. The Dollar Line, the President Line, Matson, Canadian Pacific, British and Orient, and North German Lloyd were just a few of the many companies, each of which had as many as a ship a week visiting any given
Jess Oppenheimer (Laughs, Luck...and Lucy: How I Came to Create the Most Popular Sitcom of All Time)
These events have not been the first to change my views on economics since I started studying the subject at Oxford University in 1967.9 Over the subsequent forty-five years I have learned a great deal and, unsurprisingly, changed my mind from time to time. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, for example, I came to the view that a bigger role for markets and a macroeconomic policy dedicated to monetary stability were essential, in both high-income and developing countries. I participated, therefore, in the move towards more market-oriented economic perspectives that took place at that time. I was particularly impressed with the Austrian view of the market economy as a system for encouraging the search for profitable opportunities, in contrast to the neoclassical fixation with equilibrium: the writings of Joseph Schumpeter and Hayek were (and remain) powerful influences. The present crisis has underlined my scepticism about equilibrium,
Martin Wolf (The Shifts and the Shocks: What we've learned - and have still to learn - from the financial crisis)
Perhaps the most common device for giving people focus and direction is goal setting, but goals, as often as they are used, have their pros and cons. Sure, if you can convince everybody that profits must increase 20% next quarter or we’re going out of business, people will hurry around looking for ways to hype profits by 20%. When discussing “mission” I assigned Susan a goal of 25% improvement in sales, based on what I calculated was needed to avoid closing the factory and on what I felt her district could reasonably provide. It was not a number pulled from the ether, and I went to some length to explain this to her. Short of any such basis in reality, people will often do the easiest things, such as firing 20% of the workforce, canceling vital R&D programs, or simply not making any payments to suppliers. In other words, they will take achieving the goal as seriously as they feel you were in setting it; they will sense whether you have positioned yourself at the Schwerpunkt. Goals, as we all know, can be motivators. Cypress Semiconductor, a communications-oriented company founded in 1982, used to have a computer that tracked the thousands of self-imposed goals that its people fed into the system. Cypress founder T. J. Rodgers identified this automated goal tending system as the heart of his management style and a big factor in the company’s early success.136 Frankly, I find this philosophy depressing, not to mention a temptation to focus inward: If the boss places great importance on entering and tracking goals, as he obviously does, then that is what the other employees are going to consider important.137 In any case, what’s the big deal about meeting or missing a goal? A goal is an intention at a point in time. It is, to a large extent, an arbitrary target, whether you set it or someone above you assigns it. And we all know that numerical goals can be gamed, like banking (delaying) sales that we could have made this quarter to help us make quota next quarter. Unlike a Schwerpunkt, which gives focus and direction for chaotic and uncertain situations, what does a goal tell you? Just keep your head down and continue plugging away?
Chet Richards (Certain to Win: The Strategy of John Boyd, Applied to Business)
Syria was milked of its more profitable resources,’ believed Lawrence’s wartime comrade W. F. Stirling, who noted that the country’s profitable utilities and monopolies were all French-owned and that what infrastructure existed was built ‘for strategic purposes and not for public benefit’.15 And corruption was pervasive: it was not long before one British diplomat reported that French officials were ‘expecting liberal presents for services rendered by them’.16 As even Catroux commented, ‘we were in the Orient where nothing comes for free’.17
James Barr (A Line in the Sand: Britain, France and the struggle that shaped the Middle East)
Outsourcing requires a tight integration of suppliers, making sure that all pieces arrive just in time. Therefore, when some suppliers were unable to deliver certain basic components like capacitors and flash memory, Compaq's network was paralyzed. The company was looking at 600,000 to 700,000 unfilled orders in handheld devices. The $499 Pocket PCs were selling for $700 to $800 at auctions on eBay and Amazon.com. Cisco experienced a different but equally damaging problem: When orders dried up, Cisco neglected to turn off its supply chain, resulting in a 300 percent ballooning of its raw materials inventory. The final numbers are frightening: The aggregate market value loss between March 2000 and March 2001 of the twelve major companies that adopted outsourcing-Cisco, Dell, Compaq, Gateway, Apple, IBM, Lucent, Hewlett-Packard, Motorola, Ericsson, Nokia, and Nortel-exceeded $1.2 trillion. The painful experience of these companies and their investors is a vivid demonstration of the consequences of ignoring network effects. A me attitude, where the company's immediate financial balance is the only factor, limits network thinking. Not understanding how the actions of one node affect other nodes easily cripples whole segments of the network. Experts agree that such rippling losses are not an inevitable downside of the network economy. Rather, these companies failed because they outsourced their manufacturing without fully understanding the changes required in their business models. Hierarchical thinking does not fit a network economy. In traditional organizations, rapid shifts can be made within the organization, with any resulting losses being offset by gains in other parts of the hierarchy. In a network economy each node must be profitable. Failing to understand this, the big players of the network game exposed themselves to the risks of connectedness without benefiting from its advantages. When problems arose, they failed to make the right, tough decisions, such as shutting down the supply line in Cisco's case, and got into even bigger trouble. At both the macro- and the microeconomic level, the network economy is here to stay. Despite some high-profile losses, outsourcing will be increasingly common. Financial interdependencies, ignoring national and continental boundaries, will only be strengthened with globalization. A revolution in management is in the making. It will take a new, network-oriented view of the economy and an understanding of the consequences of interconnectedness to smooth the way.
Albert-László Barabási (Linked: How Everything Is Connected to Everything Else and What It Means for Business, Science, and Everyday Life)
Yet why should Chinese, Indians, Muslims and Spaniards – who belonged to very different cultures that failed to agree about much of anything – nevertheless share the belief in gold? Why didn’t it happen that Spaniards believed in gold, while Muslims believed in barley, Indians in cowry shells, and Chinese in rolls of silk? Economists have a ready answer. Once trade connects two areas, the forces of supply and demand tend to equalise the prices of transportable goods. In order to understand why, consider a hypothetical case. Assume that when regular trade opened between India and the Mediterranean, Indians were uninterested in gold, so it was almost worthless. But in the Mediterranean, gold was a coveted status symbol, hence its value was high. What would happen next? Merchants travelling between India and the Mediterranean would notice the difference in the value of gold. In order to make a profit, they would buy gold cheaply in India and sell it dearly in the Mediterranean. Consequently, the demand for gold in India would skyrocket, as would its value. At the same time the Mediterranean would experience an influx of gold, whose value would consequently drop. Within a short time the value of gold in India and the Mediterranean would be quite similar. The mere fact that Mediterranean people believed in gold would cause Indians to start believing in it as well. Even if Indians still had no real use for gold, the fact that Mediterranean people wanted it would be enough to make the Indians value it. Similarly, the fact that another person believes in cowry shells, or dollars, or electronic data, is enough to strengthen our own belief in them, even if that person is otherwise hated, despised or ridiculed by us. Christians and Muslims who could not agree on religious beliefs could nevertheless agree on a monetary belief, because whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something. For thousands of years, philosophers, thinkers and prophets have besmirched money and called it the root of all evil. Be that as it may, money is also the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
A good businessman knows how to make a profit. An engineer makes sure it runs well. We need more leaders who are task oriented.
Phil Mitchell
Suppose it becomes the acknowledged purpose of inventors and engineers, observed Aldous Huxley, to provide ordinary people with the means of 'doing profitable and intrinsically significant work, of helping men and women to achieve independence from bosses, so that they may become their own employers, or members of a self-governing, co-operative group working for subsistence and a local market ... this differently orientated technological progress (would result in) a progressive decentralisation of population, of accessibility of land, of ownership of the means of production, of political and economic power'. Other advantages, said Huxley, would be 'a more humanly satisfying life for more people, a greater measure of genuine self-governing democracy and a blessed freedom from the silly or pernicious adult education provided by the mass producers of consumer goods through the medium of advertisements'.
Ernst F. Schumacher (Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered)
We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.
Clayborne Carson (The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr.)
L’enseignement de René Guénon sur la légitimité des autres traditions est vérifié et validé ainsi par les vérités mêmes qui préoccupent la conscience islamique. D’autre part, ayant énoncé la nécessité d'un accord traditionnel entre Orient et Occident, dans l'intérêt de l’humanité dans son ensemble, il a expliqué que cet accord doit porter sur les principes dont tout le reste dépend, et toute son œuvre n’a pas d’autre but que de susciter et de développer en Occident la conscience des vérités universelles dont le Tawhid est dans l’Islam l’expression la plus apparente. Il n’est que naturel que cet hommage constant et multiple à ce qui est la vérité la plus chère à l’Islam d’une façon générale, profite en même temps à l’autorité doctrinale de celui qui en a été de nos jours l'exposant le plus qualifié.
Michel Vâlsan (L'Islam et la fonction de René Guénon)
From this basis, Boyd sets out to develop a normative view on a design for command and control. As in Patterns of Conflict, he starts with some ‘samples from historical environment’, offering nine citations from nine practitioners, including from himself (see Box 6.1):6 Sun Tzu (around 400 BC) Probe enemy strength to unmask his strengths, weaknesses, patterns of movement and intentions. Shape enemy’s perception of world to manipulate/undermine his plans and actions. Employ Cheng/Ch’I maneuvers to quickly and unexpectedly hurl strength against weaknesses. Bourcet (1764–71) A plan ought to have several branches . . . One should . . . mislead the enemy and make him imagine that the main effort is coming at some other part. And . . . one must be ready to profit by a second or third branch of the plan without giving one’s enemy time to consider it. Napoleon (early 1800s) Strategy is the art of making use of time and space. I am less chary of the latter than the former. Space we can recover, time never. I may lose a battle, but I shall never lose a minute. The whole art of war consists in a well-reasoned and circumspect defensive, followed by rapid and audacious attack. Clausewitz (1832) Friction (which includes the interaction of many factors, such as uncertainty, psychological/moral forces and effects, etc.) impedes activity. Friction is the only concept that more or less corresponds to the factors that distinguish real war from war on paper. In this sense, friction represents the climate or atmosphere of war. Jomini (1836) By free and rapid movements carry bulk of the forces (successively) against fractions of the enemy. N.B. Forrest (1860s) Git thar the fustest with the mostest. Blumentritt (1947) The entire operational and tactical leadership method hinged upon . . . rapid concise assessment of situations, . . . and quick decision and quick execution, on the principle: each minute ahead of the enemy is an advantage. Balck (1980) Emphasis upon creation of implicit connections or bonds based upon trust, not mistrust, that permit wide freedom for subordinates to exercise imagination and initiative – yet harmonize within intent of superior commanders. Benefit: internal simplicity that permits rapid adaptability. Yours truly Operate inside adversary’s observation-orientation-decision-action loops to enmesh adversary in a world of uncertainty, doubt, mistrust, confusion, disorder, fear, panic, chaos . . . and/or fold adversary back inside himself so that he cannot cope with events/efforts as they unfold.
Frans P.B. Osinga (Science, Strategy and War: The Strategic Theory of John Boyd (Strategy and History))
The profit-oriented print and electronic media have made news itself a commodity which is sold on the basis of demand and supply. They sell what people want. The government can ban drugs and intoxicants which are harmful to society, but there is no such mechanism to ban media from selling harmful news. People have become so addicted to negative news nowadays that they don’t want to see good news at all.
Awdhesh Singh (Myths are Real, Reality is a Myth)
I once had a foreign exchange trader who worked for me who was an unabashed chartist. He truly believed that all the information you needed was reflected in the past history of a currency. Now it's true there can be less to consider in trading currencies than individual equities, since at least for developed country currencies it's typically not necessary to pore over their financial statements every quarter. And in my experience, currencies do exhibit sustainable trends more reliably than, say, bonds or commodities. Imbalances caused by, for example, interest rate differentials that favor one currency over another (by making it more profitable to invest in the higher-yielding one) can persist for years. Of course, another appeal of charting can be that it provides a convenient excuse to avoid having to analyze financial statements or other fundamental data. Technical analysts take their work seriously and apply themselves to it diligently, but it's also possible for a part-time technician to do his market analysis in ten minutes over coffee and a bagel. This can create the false illusion of being a very efficient worker. The FX trader I mentioned was quite happy to engage in an experiment whereby he did the trades recommended by our in-house market technician. Both shared the same commitment to charts as an under-appreciated path to market success, a belief clearly at odds with the in-house technician's avoidance of trading any actual positions so as to provide empirical proof of his insights with trading profits. When challenged, he invariably countered that managing trading positions would challenge his objectivity, as if holding a losing position would induce him to continue recommending it in spite of the chart's contrary insight. But then, why hold a losing position if it's not what the chart said? I always found debating such tortured logic a brief but entertaining use of time when lining up to get lunch in the trader's cafeteria. To the surprise of my FX trader if not to me, the technical analysis trading account was unprofitable. In explaining the result, my Kool-Aid drinking trader even accepted partial responsibility for at times misinterpreting the very information he was analyzing. It was along the lines of that he ought to have recognized the type of pattern that was evolving but stupidly interpreted the wrong shape. It was almost as if the results were not the result of the faulty religion but of the less than completely faithful practice of one of its adherents. So what use to a profit-oriented trading room is a fully committed chartist who can't be trusted even to follow the charts? At this stage I must confess that we had found ourselves in this position as a last-ditch effort on my part to salvage some profitability out of a trader I'd hired who had to this point been consistently losing money. His own market views expressed in the form of trading positions had been singularly unprofitable, so all that remained was to see how he did with somebody else's views. The experiment wasn't just intended to provide a “live ammunition” record of our in-house technician's market insights, it was my last best effort to prove that my recent hiring decision hadn't been a bad one. Sadly, his failure confirmed my earlier one and I had to fire him. All was not lost though, because he was able to transfer his unsuccessful experience as a proprietary trader into a new business advising clients on their hedge fund investments.
Simon A. Lack (Wall Street Potholes: Insights from Top Money Managers on Avoiding Dangerous Products)
Failures as people: millions of Americans felt that this description fit them to a T. Seeking a solution, any solution, they eagerly forked over their cash to any huckster who promised release, the quicker and more effortlessly the better: therapies like “bioenergetics” (“The Revolutionary Therapy That Uses the Language of the Body to Heal the Problems of the Mind”); Primal Scream (which held that when patients shrieked in a therapist’s office, childhood trauma could be reexperienced, then released; John Lennon and James Earl Jones were fans); or Transcendental Meditation, which promised that deliverance could come if you merely closed your eyes and chanted a mantra (the “TM” organization sold personal mantras, each supposedly “unique,” to hundreds of thousands of devotees). Or “religions” like the Church Universal and Triumphant, or the Reverend Sun Myung Moon’s Unification Church, or “Scientology”—this last one invented by a science fiction writer, reportedly on a bet. Devotees paid cash to be “audited” by practitioners who claimed the power—if, naturally, you paid for enough sessions—to remove “trauma patterns” accreted over the 75 million years that had passed since Xenu, tyrant of the Galactic Confederacy, deposited billions of people on earth next to volcanoes and detonated hydrogen bombs inside those volcanos, thus scattering harming “body thetans” to attach to the souls of the living, which once unlatched allowed practitioners to cross the “bridge to total freedom” and “unlimited creativity.” Another religion, the story had it, promised “perfect knowledge”—though its adherents’ public meeting was held up several hours because none of them knew how to run the movie projector. Gallup reported that six million Americans had tried TM, five million had twisted themselves into yoga poses, and two million had sampled some sort of Oriental religion. And hundreds of thousands of Americans in eleven cities had plunked down $250 for the privilege being screamed at as “assholes.” “est”—Erhard Seminars Training, named after the only-in-America hustler who invented it, Werner Erhard, originally Jack Rosenberg, a former used-car and encyclopedia salesman who had tried and failed to join the Marines (this was not incidental) at the age of seventeen, and experienced a spiritual rebirth one morning while driving across the Golden Gate Bridge (“I realized that I knew nothing. . . . In the next instant—after I realized that I knew nothing—I realized that I knew everything”)—promised “to transform one’s ability to experience living so that the situations one had been trying to change or had been putting up with, clear up just in the process of life itself,” all that in just sixty hours, courtesy of a for-profit corporation whose president had been general manager of the Coca-Cola Bottling Company of California and a former member of the Harvard Business School faculty. A
Rick Perlstein (The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan)
Cornelius Rhoades in San Juan (funded by the Rockefeller Institute), the children’s experiments at Brooklyn Doctors Hospital, the 1963 study at University of California’s Department of Pediatrics, the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center study performed in conjunction with Genetic Systems Corporation, and countless others. It was clear that the healthcare industry was profit-oriented, and the entire structure was built around treating, not preventing.
Hunt Kingsbury (Book of Cures (A Thomas McAlister Adventure 2))
Once trade connects two areas, the forces of supply and demand tend to equalise the prices of transportable goods. In order to understand why, consider a hypothetical case. Assume that when regular trade opened between India and the Mediterranean, Indians were uninterested in gold, so it was almost worthless. But in the Mediterranean, gold was a coveted status symbol, hence its value was high. What would happen next? Merchants travelling between India and the Mediterranean would notice the difference in the value of gold. In order to make a profit, they would buy gold cheaply in India and sell it dearly in the Mediterranean. Consequently, the demand for gold in India would skyrocket, as would its value. At the same time the Mediterranean would experience an influx of gold, whose value would consequently drop. Within a short time the value of gold in India and the Mediterranean would be quite similar. The mere fact that Mediterranean people believed in gold would cause Indians to start believing in it as well. Even if Indians still had no real use for gold, the fact that Mediterranean people wanted it would be enough to make the Indians value it. Similarly, the fact that another person believes in cowry shells, or dollars, or electronic data, is enough to strengthen our own belief in them, even if that person is otherwise hated, despised or ridiculed by us. Christians and Muslims who could not agree on religious beliefs could nevertheless agree on a monetary belief, because whereas religion asks us to believe in something, money asks us to believe that other people believe in something. For thousands of years, philosophers, thinkers and prophets have besmirched money and called it the root of all evil. Be that as it may, money is also the apogee of human tolerance. Money is more open-minded than language, state laws, cultural codes, religious beliefs and social habits. Money is the only trust system created by humans that can bridge almost any cultural gap, and that does not discriminate on the basis of religion, gender, race, age or sexual orientation. Thanks to money, even people who don’t know each other and don’t trust each other can nevertheless cooperate effectively.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
A moral economy is either a moral enterprise that is guided by a genuine spiritual desire to create one, even at the expense of strictly economic considerations, or it will degenerate into another profit-oriented and exploitative use of resources. Citizens who are not prepared to pay higher prices to support such an economy and volunteer their own efforts on its behalf are not likely to be prepared for self-governance in any form. Hence the need for a new municipal politics to become an intensely educational and participatory experience at every level of civic life.
Murray Bookchin (Urbanization Without Cities: The Rise and Decline of Citizenship)
Increasingly, by choice or by accident, this is the role our nation has taken: the role of those who make peaceful revolution impossible by refusing to give up the privileges and the pleasures that come from the immense profits of overseas investments. I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.
Martin Luther King Jr. (The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr.)
In its most basic form, the message of Unconventional Success requires only a few pages to describe the blueprint of a well-diversified, equity-oriented, passively managed portfolio, using not-for-profit investment managers to implement the plan.
David F. Swensen (Unconventional Success: A Fundamental Approach to Personal Investment)
Ultimately, Unconventional Success proposes a positive solution to the investments challenge facing individual investors. The investment management world includes a very small number of not-for-profit money management firms, allowing investors the opportunity to invest with organizations devoted exclusively to fulfilling fiduciary obligations. Moreover, the market contains a number of attractively structured, passively managed investment alternatives, affording investors the opportunity to create equity-oriented, broadly diversified portfolios. In spite of the massive failure of the mutual-fund industry, investors willing to take an unconventional approach to portfolio management enjoy the opportunity to achieve financial success.
David F. Swensen (Unconventional Success: A Fundamental Approach to Personal Investment)
Mother’s Day was born. Combining the talents of the card makers, the candy manufacturers, and the florists, Mother’s Day became the perfect rip-off. Florists had always been in the van of advertising; they had also mounted a successful campaign to remove the unhappy phrase from newspaper death notices: “No flowers by request.” It had been replaced by the far more positive—and profitable—slogan: “Say Farewell with Flowers.” In a mother-orientated nation, no son, however cynical, could refuse to send flowers on that special day; the many florists in and around Wall Street—established originally to provide the carnation boutonnieres favored by fashion-conscious brokers—did a record business during the week before the bogus anniversary. As the day drew closer, the price of blooms soared—a practice perfectly understood in the countinghouses; it was known as pushing the price as high as the market would bear. In fact, candy manufacturers saw the price of their shares rise as a result of Mother’s Day.
Gordon Thomas (The Day the Bubble Burst: A Social History of the Wall Street Crash of 1929)
And of those titles you published, how many ended up making money? Peter: Probably around a third or fewer turned a profit for the house in the first few years, though my list was generally oriented toward books that, with luck, would backlist and generate money over the long term.
Andy Ross (The Literary Agent's Guide to Writing a Non-Fiction Book Proposal)
Profits are a consequence of customer care, employee engagement, enlightened leadership, and service orientation:
Fred Kofman (Conscious Business: How to Build Value Through Values)
In the context of professionalized nonprofit organizations, groups are urged to be single-issue oriented, framing their message around "deserving" people within the population they serve, and using tactics palatable to elites.
Dean Spade (Mutual Aid: Building Solidarity in This Crisis (And the Next))
Culture is a vehicle for true self-expression. The flowering of individual creativity takes place in the context of culture. When a child becomes peer-oriented, the transmission lines of civilization are downed. The new models to emulate are other children or peer groups or the latest pop icons. Appearance, attitudes, dress, and demeanor all adapt accordingly. Even children's language changes — more impoverished, less articulate about their observations and experience, less expressive of meaning and nuance. Peer-oriented children are not devoid of culture, but the culture they are enrolled in is generated by their peer orientation. Although this culture is broadcast through media controlled by adults, it is the children and youth whose tastes and preferences it must satisfy. They, the young, wield the spending power that determines the profits of the culture industry — even if it is the parents’ incomes that are being disposed of in the process. Advertisers know subtly well how to exploit the power of peer imitation as they make their pitch to ever-younger groups of customers via the mass electronic media. In this way, it is our youth who dictate hairstyles and fashion, youth to whom music must appeal, youth who primarily drive the box office. Youth determine the cultural icons of our age. The adults who cater to the expectations of peer-oriented youth may control the market and profit from it, but as agents of cultural transmission they are simply pandering to the debased cultural tastes of children disconnected from healthy adult contact. Peer culture arises from children and evolves with them as they age. Peer orientation breeds aggression and an unhealthy, precocious sexuality. The result is the aggressively hostile and hypersexualized youth culture, propagated by the mass media, to which children are already exposed by early adolescence. Today's rock videos shock even adults who themselves grew up under the influence of the “sexual revolution.” As the onset of peer-orientation emerges earlier and earlier, so does the culture it creates. The butt-shaking and belly-button-baring Spice Girls pop phenomenon of the late 1990s, as of this writing a rapidly fading memory, seems in retrospect a nostalgically innocent cultural expression compared with the pornographically eroticized pop idols served up to today's preadolescents.
Gabor Maté (Hold On to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers)
(from Acknowledgments) For some years I have profited from an in-house, informal but ongoing seminar on organizational behavior, a seminar comprising my wife, our three children, and three children-in-law. They have shared their insights into the functions and dysfunctions of the organizational settings in which they have worked, which include government, education, and medicine. I am indebted to all of them, though none are responsible for the uses to which I have put their observations. Eli Muller first drew my attention to the larger themes of The Wire (episodes of which he can quote chapter and verse), and his acute analysis of institutional dynamics finds its echoes in the pages of this book, which he also helped to edit. Thanks go to Joseph Muller, M.D., for orienting me in the literature of medicine and healthcare, as well as his sage advice about the tone and direction of the book. My wife, Sharon, was the first reader and editor of every chapter, and many of the book's ideas were born or refined in our daily conversations (when we weren't talking about the immeasurable pleasures of grandparenthood--but that's the subject of another book). Completion of this book was eased by the support of my parents. I'm saddened to note that this is the last project that I was able to discuss with mt father, Henry Muller, who passed away when the manuscript was nearing completion: his memory is a blessing. My mother, Bella Muller, remains a vigorous source of wisdom, encouragement, and humor in my life.
Jerry Z. Muller (The Tyranny of Metrics)
Querencia requires the willingness to limit short-term profits for long-term sustainability and is reflective of an orientation to the world that is tied more to a love of place and people than any form of economic calculus.
Gregory A. Smith (Place- and Community-Based Education in Schools)
Following the evidence, I concluded that individuals fare best by constructing equity-oriented, broadly diversified portfolios without the active management component. Instead of pursuing ephemeral promises of market-beating strategies, individuals benefit from adopting the ironclad reality of market-mimicking portfolios managed by not-for-profit investment organizations. The
David F. Swensen (Unconventional Success: A Fundamental Approach to Personal Investment)
seminar on Intel strategy and operations. Resident professor: Dr. Andy Grove. In the space of an hour, Grove traced the company’s history, year by year. He summarized Intel’s core pursuits: a profit margin twice the industry norm, market leadership in any product line it entered, the creation of “challenging jobs” and “growth opportunities” for employees.* Fair enough, I thought, though I’d heard similar things at business school. Then he said something that left a lasting impression on me. He referenced his previous company, Fairchild, where he’d first met Noyce and Moore and went on to blaze a trail in silicon wafer research. Fairchild was the industry’s gold standard, but it had one great flaw: a lack of “achievement orientation.” “Expertise was very much valued there,” Andy explained. “That is why people got hired. That’s why people got promoted. Their effectiveness at translating that knowledge into actual results was kind of shrugged off.” At Intel, he went on, “we tend to be exactly the opposite. It almost doesn’t matter what you know. It’s what you can do with whatever you know or can acquire and actually accomplish [that] tends to be valued here.” Hence the company’s slogan: “Intel delivers.
John E. Doerr (Measure What Matters: How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs)
We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered. —MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. “Beyond Vietnam,” 1967
Naomi Klein (No Is Not Enough: Resisting Trump's Shock Politics and Winning the World We Need)
Peace of mind in a profit-oriented context.
Don DeLillo (White Noise)
Command-oriented, low-freedom management is common because it’s profitable, it requires less effort, and most managers are terrified of the alternative. It’s easy to run a team that does what they are told. But to have to explain to them why they’re doing something? And then debate whether it’s the right thing to do? What if they disagree with me? What if my team doesn’t want to do what I tell them to? And won’t I look like an idiot if I’m wrong? It’s faster and more efficient to just tell the team what to do and then make sure they deliver. Right?
Laszlo Bock (Work Rules!: Insights from Inside Google That Will Transform How You Live and Lead)
This doesn’t sound much like the rational profit maximizers that economists make us out to be. Traditional economic models don’t consider the human sense of fairness, even though it demonstrably affects economic decisions. They also ignore human emotions in general, even though the brain of Homo economicus barely distinguishes sex from money. Advertisers know this all too well, which is why they often pair expensive items, such as cars or watches, with attractive women. But economists prefer to imagine a hypothetical world driven by market forces and rational choice rooted in self-interest. This world does fit some members of the human race, who act purely selfishly and take advantage of others without compunction. In most experiments, however, such people are in the minority. The majority is altruistic, cooperative, sensitive to fairness, and oriented toward community goals. The level of trust and cooperation among them exceeds predictions from economic models.
Frans de Waal (The Age of Empathy: Nature's Lessons for a Kinder Society)
Q: What can ordinary people with busy lives and not a lot of political access do to address this stuff? You can try to address it in your own life. You can try to set up your life so you have to drive as little as possible. In so doing, you vote with your feet and your wallet. When more people bike, walk and use public transit, there is greater pressure on elected officials and government agencies to improve these modes of transportation. It thus increases the profitability of public transit and makes cities more desirable places to live. It also helps reduce your carbon footprint and reduces the amount of money going to automobile manufacturers, oil companies and highway agencies. In a globally connected capitalist world, cities and countries are competing for highly skilled labor—programmers, engineers, scientists, etc. To some degree, these people can live anywhere they want. So San Francisco or my current city in Minnesota aren’t just competing with other U.S. cities but are competing with cities in Europe for the best and brightest talent. Polls and statistics show that more and more skilled people want to live in cities that are walkable, bikeable and have good public transit. Also our population is aging and realizing that they don’t want to be trapped in automobile-oriented retirement communities in Florida or the southwest USA. They also want improved walkability and transit. Finally, there’s been an explosion of obesity in the USA with resulting increases in healthcare costs. Many factors contribute to this but increased amounts of driving and a lack of daily exercise are major factors. City, state and business leaders in the US are increasingly aware of all this. It is part of Gil Peñalosa’s “8-80” message (the former parks commissioner of Bogotá, Colombia) and many other leaders. (2015 interview with Microcosm Publishing)
Andy Singer
A pessimistic orientation does not seek accommodations with the system. We share the goal of the undercommons, which “is not to end the troubles but to end the world that created those particular troubles as the ones that must be opposed” (Halberstam 2013, 9). Moten and Harney don’t play the liberal game of reform; they are constantly reframing the problems at hand. What questions we ask are crucial—for bad questions yield worse answers, ones that compound the problem. On prison abolition, their intervention is decisive and reconfigures the coordinates of the debate: for them, it is “not so much the abolition of prisons but the abolition of a society that could have prisons, that could have slavery” (Moten and Harney 2013, 42). How do you abolish a society? How do you fight state power? Is anti-statism, ethical (that is, nonviolent) anarchism, the only solution? Is it a solution? Or do you dare to seize power, as with the example of Morales? A universal politics takes these questions to heart. For this reason, its skeptical negativity is put into the service of a more virtuous end: locating antagonisms, rather than settling for conflicts or pseudo-struggles. Its challenge is to sustain the antagonistic logic of class struggle, and avoid the comfort of static oppositions. The cultural Left has its enemies (Trump, Putin, Le Pen, Erdoğan, Modi, Duterte, Netanyahu, Orbán, Bolsonaro, Suu Kyi, MBS, etc.)—and, conversely, notorious leaders blame liberal media, demonizing bad press with the “enemy of the people” charge—but nothing really changes; the basic features or coordinates of the current society remain the same. Worse, the liberal capitalist system is legitimized (only in a free democracy can you, as a citizen, criticize tyrants abroad and, more importantly, express your outrage at the president, politicians, or state power without the fear of retribution) and the cultural Left is tacitly compensated for playing by the rules—for practicing non-antagonistic politics, for forgoing class insurgency and not engaging in class war (Žižek 2020f)—rewarded with “libidinal profit” (Žižek 1997b, 47), with what Lacan calls a “surplus-enjoyment” (2007, 147), an enjoyment-in-sacrifice. That is to say, cultural leftists, with their “Beautiful Souls” intact, enjoy not being a racist, a misogynist, a transphobe, an ableist, and so on. Hating the haters, the morally repulsive, the fascists of the world, is indeed an endless source of libidinal satisfaction for “woke” liberals. But what changes does it actually produce?
Zahi Zalloua (Universal Politics)
While there are certainly variants of the abstract capitalist model, one persistent and typical tendency is to assess the planet as either storehouse (of needed resource inputs, including energy resources) and/or sink (for waste products of all kinds, due in large measure to a continually sought novelty, and the concomitant obsolescence of the old). As a consequence of this orientation, nature, as both inherent worth and utilitarian guarantor of sustainable life, must be subjected to the ruthless calculus of costs and benefits. In such evaluations anything that fails to maximize profits or minimize losses must be discounted, ideally to a value of zero. In combination with an intensifying focus on shorter and shorter time frames for a maximum return on investment, a competition-driven imperative to externalize all costs that do not contribute to the bottom line has produced the by-now exhaustive litany of environmental woes, including the climate catastrophe that now threatens life on the planet as we have known it.
Noam Chomsky (Consequences of Capitalism: Manufacturing Discontent and Resistance)
In fact, we are saying that, on the whole, you are more likely to extend your business and have a fulfilled life if you have the attitude that there are always new customers out there waiting to be enrolled rather than that money, customers, and ideas are in short supply. You are more likely to be successful, overall, if you participate joyfully with projects and goals and do not think your life depends on achieving the mark because then you will be better able to connect to people all around you. On the whole, resources are likely to come to you in greater abundance when you are generous and inclusive and engage people in your passion for life. There aren’t any guarantees, of course. When you are oriented to abundance, you care less about being in control, and you take more risks. You may give away short-term profits in pursuit of a bigger dream; you may take a long view without being able to predict the outcome. In the measurement world, you set a goal and strive for it. In the universe of possibility, you set the context and let life unfold.
Rosamund Stone Zander (The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life)