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Firms = Jobs Argument

October 28, 2011

So the grand old WSJ is being irritatingly prissy in this article, like they tend to do when they talk about anything that’s not finance, and about anyone less Republican or upper-upper-class white than they are (so here we refer to 99.9324% of the known planet).

But in any case, this contains the seed of an interesting argument.

The argument that a company should always work towards the good of its shareholders is nice but ultimately just an idea, almost impossible to verify.

The thought that companies don’t have to go out and make jobs, just because – that I do agree with, but one has to keep in mind that the well-being of a (large) company depends very much on the well being of its customers. It’s a big ol’ cycle, and economists know that well (or are supposed to, anyway).

Oh, and despite their overpriced drinks, I think Starbucks does have its heart (and shareholder-priorities) in the right place. They’ve got, for instance, mostly free Wi-Fi, which is a public service towards the greater good of mankind. And because their products are primarily discretionary goods (you can live without your daily venti triple-shot caramel latte, I swear), it makes perfect sense that they would want the economy to go back to the “Now Everyone Can Spend!” days of yore.

Ok so I’m done with the pontificating, now for the whinging: this writer is so full of crap that if he wasn’t quoting Friedman (bow) and Schultz (bow) and Mackey (bow) it really wouldn’t be an article at all, just a blatant display of a snotty gradeschooler thumbing his nose at that kid who lives down the street in that shabby old house.

… Obviously I’m not very good at insults.

Eek, I forgot to mention the other thing I thought of writing. Woolgathering on a Wealth Cap – remind me sometime.


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