"The higher officers of the corporation," writes Mr. H. L. Gantt of a Public Utility Company established in America during the war, "have all without exception been men of the 'business' type of mind, who have made their success through financiering, buying, selling, etc.... As a matter of fact it is well known that our industrial system has not measured up as we had expected....The reason for its falling short is undoubtedly that the men directing it had been trained in a business system operated for profits, and did not understand one operated solely for production. This is no criticism of the men as individuals; they simply did not know the job, and, what is worse, they did not know that they did not know it."Decades later, the careers of people like Mitt Romney and the banksters has shown how destructive the concentration on finance had become for capitalist economies.
That a considerable degree of efficiency will result incidentally from the pursuit of business profits is not, of course, denied. What seems to be true, however, is that the main interest of those directing an industry which has reached this stage of development is given to financial strategy and the control of markets, because the gains which these activities offer are normally so much larger than those accruing from the mere improvement of the processes of production.
Monday, January 18, 2016
R. H. Tawney in The Acquisitive Society (pp. 278-79) pointed out that the obsession with finance was harming production and not much heed has been paid to his warning:
Posted by Steve J. at 2:13 AM