Selling Out?

I watched a thing on Ralph Nader tonight in which he talked about fighting against corporations that are focused solely on the stock price--specifically big American automakers.

This struck a chord with me because I just read the chapter in How Toyota Became #1 (leanblog.org review) that talks about the practice of ignoring the stock price, and focusing instead on what will benefit the company (i.e. its customers and employees) long-term. This is something that American automakers have shown themselves to be especially bad at, and it is a big reason Toyota has been doing so well for so long.

Also, I was recently accused of "selling out" because, though I've marched in several peace rallies and read more than my share of Gandhi's writings, I'm pursuing an opportunity to work for an outfit that would make parts for a DoD contractor.

In light of all this:
I believe in responsible small business that responds to customers, respects people, and benefits communities.
Businesses like these can set an example to inspire others and thus cause change for the common good while making a buck.
Making money is not a bad thing, but it should be done in moderation like anything else.
Though the American military is too large and used improperly, it's better that the monies paid for its maintenance and expansion go into responsible, small, American businesses than anywhere else.

And now I don't feel bad about helping to land a DoD contract.

2 comments:

Mom said...

I was with you until the end. Seems to me that you either believe in war or you don't. You have argued in the past that there was no such thing as a just war. Is war OK if you, or a community, or a company is making money off it? What is true for you about war?

Cory said...

War is some pretty nasty business(no play on words intended). However I believe that countries, and just communities in general should be ready, willing and able to defend themselves when ultimately necessary. Personally, I do not agree 100% nor blindly the reasons this country is involved in its conflicts in the middle east(war? I never heard congress declare it, Our president declared it on "terrorism" but made no specific targets of this declaration, nor is it his place).
Anyway, I don't think you've sold out by doing contract work for DoD. I don't know exactly what your doing but, unless your involved covert, unconstitutional stuff, your doing your patriotic duty.
I also think alot of the "peacenic's" out there calling you a sell-out or what ever would do themselves a tad bit of good to live, for a while, under a regime where people are imprisoned and even publicly executed for the slightest discrepancy with what their government is doing. Or in a place where war-lords(over-blown street gangs, basically) go house to house abducting any male big enough to hold a gun and executing any that don't join their legions.
Sell-out? I hardly think so.
Are the folks vocalizing against our current "wars" unpatriotic?
Hell, no. They are just as much patriots as the soldiers fighting and dying overseas, they are fighting for what they believe in to be the best for this country and its people, just the same.
Do I agree w/ every anti-war propagandist out there?
Not with out some facts and hard proof put before my own eyes.
Its really too complex an issue going back way too far in history for me to be the one to decide just because of what the media, on the left or right, has to say about it.
On the lighter side, that stuff about Toyota is great stuff!
I'm in manufacturing and the company I work for is going through an evolution from a small family owned company, 3rd generation now, where the company heads new everyons name, the workers kids and grandkids too, to one where there are so many folks that have come and gone and just the volume of them, its hard for them to know all that stuff. Let alone keep up w/ capital expenditures modern technology requires, but is so desperately needed to compete in the world market. similar to the conundrum of trying to buy a first vehicle to get "credit".
"I can't get you (reasonable) financing because you don't have any credit"
"but that's exactly what I'm trying to do..."
Anyway, an economy that is based on sustainability, and respect on both sides is one that will prosper, any deficiency on either part is eventually destined to fail.
And an economic that sources out its defense is most certainly destined to be overrun, bought out, enslaved, colonized, yadda... or even destroyed.


Happy Rides,
Cory