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Capitalism: What is the purpose of business?

At first glance, it might seem redundant to emphasize people as the central focus of economics. After all, isn't the purpose of economics, as well as business, people? Aren't people automatically the central focus of business and economic activities? Yes and no.

Jessica Alba says "It's not totally for profit"

Hardly a week passes now without a promotion of the Do Good approach to business. This week it's Jessica Alba and the Honest Company which has raised $70 million for a venture in baby products.

A few weeks ago, Richard Branson was in the crosshairs of the Guardian having declared a year ago that he was going to make business the driving force for social, environmentasl and economic benefit.  The B Team hasn't done much.

Has the social economy been lost to corporations?

Traditional capitalism is an insufficient economic model allowing monetary outcomes as the bottom line with little regard to social needs. Bottom line must be taken one step further by at least some companies, past profit, to people. How profits are used is equally as important as creation of profits. Where profits can be brought to bear by willing individuals and companies to social benefit, so much the better.

Branson's B Team: Big Egos and Inaction

Looking back a year after the announcement of Richard Branson's B Team, Guardian Sustainable Business draws attention to the lack of any discernable progress since their pledge to make business "the driving force for social,, environmental and economic benefit".  .

As Henry Ford might have advised them. "You can't build a reputation on what you're going to do"

It's far worse than that, unfortunately.

Michael Brown and the ethics of crowdfunding

In recent blogs, I've written of the inequality of opportunty for seekers of development aid funding, the gulf between our own humanitarian efforts and those of Cherie Blair when it comes to public funds, like USAID. I've also described our experience of the non-profit industrial complex which stifles bottom up inoovation.

The Revolution Will Not Be Funded: Neoliberalism and the non-profit industrial complex

It's difficult to keep up with everything going on in the world of social innovation and it wasn't until yesterday that I became awere of the book by this name which was reviewed in Yes magazine  It called for re-thinking the nonprofit model to go beyond the nonprofit industrial complex.

USAID: Despair at Blair funding

In their own words, "USAID is following a new model of development emphasizing measurable results, more efficient national and local governments, thriving civil societies, and private investment, creating the conditions to eliminate the need for its assistance over time."

They have a budget of 20 billion dollars this year to do that.

Capitalism, Climate & Cold War: This Changes Everything

In March 2009, unaware that the British governmenrt were about to follow the US in Quantitative Easing, an economic activist and social business pioneer delivered a paper to the opening plenary of the international Economics for Ecology conference in Sumy. it opened with these words:

Dear Mark Harper, I am a disabled constituent

I'm a disabled man, you are the Miinister of State for disabled people.

I'm fortunate in that my disability is minor in comparison with many who are suffering today. I claim no benefit.

I was in better health when I first approached you in 2006 as a newly established business in the Forest of Dean.  I sought your help with a problem. A company called Atos Origin had used their influence to remove my business,, a social enterprise, from a contract with DCMS. You were unable to assist.

#Gaza: Why Rabbi Lerner must be heard

Like ourselves, Rabbi Lerner is a longstanding advocate for an economy that serves all. A social economy

"Israel has broken my heart" says Rabbi Lerner, lamenting the loss of compassion in their current practice of Judaism. 


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