So, what is Conscious Capitalism?
To reintroduce myself and the purpose of this blog- my name is Katie and I’m a senior journalism student at UNC-CH. This semester, I’m studying Conscious Capitalism and how it’s been changing free-enterprise capitalism as a whole. I’ve begun reading the Whole Foods co-founder John Mackey and Raj Sisodia’s book Conscious Capitalism. What is Conscious Capitalism? In his book, Mackey states his vision for Conscious Capitalism: “Together, business leaders can liberate the extraordinary power of business and capitalism to create a world in which all people live lives full of purpose, love, and creativity – a world of compassion, freedom and prosperity.” Conscious businesses are businesses galvanized by higher purposes that serve and align the interests of all their major stakeholders, according to Mackey. These are businesses with conscious leaders who care about their people and the company’s purpose. Conscious businesses understand that stakeholders really matter. Mackey recalls the unexpected happening-dozens of customers and neighbors came to the store to help clean and fix the store. The support from other stakeholders was remarkable- even suppliers offered to resupply Whole Foods on credit. Mackey stated, “The flood demonstrated to us that all our stakeholders have the potential to form close relationships with us, to care and to commit intensely.” He then posed the question, “What more proof did we need that stakeholders matter, that they embody the heart, soul and lifeblood of an enterprise?”. Whole Foods is not alone as a conscious business that creates multiple kinds of value and well-being for all stakeholders. Next time, I’ll discuss what Conscious Capitalism is not.
Blackrock Vice Chair: “We need to change Capitalism…” Because Climate Change
Mainstream media is reporting that Blackrock Vice Chairman Philipp Hildebrand thinks investors should consider environmental benefits rather than simply focussing on maximum return on investment. Capitalism must change to avert climate change, according to the vice-chair of the world’s largest asset manager, Blackrock. Two weeks ago, Blackrock boss Larry Fink shook the corporate world with a letter demanding social responsibility in return for the support of his company, which manages around $6 trillion in assets. That would mean funds like Blackrock could become duty-bound to consider environmental risks such as climate change while making investments. “We have to change capitalism. This is really what’s at stake here. And frankly we need a new contract between companies, investors and governments,” said Hildebrand. Society is demanding that companies, both public and private, serve a social purpose. In the $1.7 trillion in active funds we manage, BlackRock can choose to sell the securities of a company if we are doubtful about its strategic direction or long-term growth. In managing our index funds BlackRock cannot express its disapproval by selling the company’s securities as long as that company remains in the relevant index. Blackrock might be worried about Climate Change, though this doesn’t mean they’ve bought into the whole climate social justice package. I think Blackrock executives are motivated by compassion for the suffering they see, though I also think Blackrock is worried that the frustration and suffering of ordinary people might empower politicians to take radical action, such as seizing or heavily taxing the assets of companies like Blackrock.
food and foodies in japan
Nishi discovers and employs Kyoko Shima, a naïve and desperate, charming simpleton to become the new face of “World” caramels in the hopes that she will attract more consumers. The plot follows Kyoko’s transformation into a Japanese superstar and how her rise to fame affects her personal life and appearance, and the profit driven executives who represent her. As Kyoko is cultivated into a pop culture icon, the audience is given insight into how the prosperity of “World” caramels dictates the personal lives and well being of the individuals who work there. In the image I have posted to this blog, Kyoko is participating in her first photo shoot. He asks Kyoko to, “Stop sleeping around” because “It’s starting to show”. This scene is comedic because of Harukawa’s blunt commentary it is also ironically sad because it underscores the objectification Kyoko enthusiastically succumbs to in order to make money. Later as they review Kyoko’s roll of film Harukawa states, “She looks good through a view finder. Plus she can lick her nose”. This notion of Kyoko appearing to be attractive through the medium of a lens poses the question of what constitutes reality. Is Kyoko attractive in real life? Or is it just the camera’s distortion of her image that makes her appear to be alluring? The mass replication of her image through pop art and advertisement propagates a version of her self that would otherwise go unnoticed if it weren’t for the technology of the camera that illuminates her enchanting qualities. Kyoko is metaphorically used in the same way caramels are in this film because both are inherently simple yet animated and presented in a way that makes them seem unique and exceptional.