In a previous post I talked about how rich 38 of Australia’s billionaires really are. Today, I read a brilliant post by Robert Reich about US myths [thanks Jill!]. What really grabbed my attention was this video which debunks the myth of the self-made billionaire:
Isn’t it time we stopped idolizing these poor little rich boys?
Isn’t it time we stopped rewarding them for being more ruthless than just about everybody else on the planet?
Isn’t it time we stopped wanting to be like them… and castigating ourselves when our scruples make us ‘fail’?
I know who I admire, and it ain’t any of these guys.
My thanks to Scottie for introducing me to Robert Reich via this video:
My disillusionment with corporations began back in the early 80’s when I learned how Microsoft became ‘great’. Then, in the early 2000’s I began researching genetic engineering and discovered what another big ‘M’ had done to maximize its profits.
More recently, it’s been Facebook and Google et al. I still have a lingering fondness for Amazon, but that’s only because I’m a reader and a writer. And of course, let’s not forget the big financial institutions right here in Australia.
To say that I’m disillusioned with corporations is an understatement, and yet, I was still surprised by the Reich video. Something about the sheer size of these behemoths amplifies everything that’s cruel, callous and vicious in the human psyche.
Stopping corporations from becoming so big and powerful won’t make them paragons of virtue, but it will stop the effects of their bad behaviour from poisoning society. And maybe, just maybe, it’ll allow the law to deal with criminal elements more effectively.
At the moment, these corporations are not only ‘too big to fail’, they’re also too big to prosecute. Something really does have to give.