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Capitalism at a tipping point, says professor

Capitalism at a tipping point, says professor

Capitalism at a tipping point, says professor

HE’S a leading business academic, but if given the chance Professor Jean-Pierre Lehman would join the Occupy Wall Street protests.

Prof Lehmann, who is Emeritus Professor at Swiss business school IMD, believes that the capitalist system is at a tipping point- and if businesses do not change the way they do things, the entire structure is at risk.

He told The Straits Times yesterday that the biggest danger to the system comes from the wide inequality that capitalism has wrought.

“I’ve not been to a country where the people are not worried about inequality. It is dangerous, destructive and a cancer,” he said.

“There is a great sense of unfairness, and the sense that the future is not going to be better for your kids. And this feeling is universal.”

Nowhere is this depression more apparent than in Europe, he said.

In Spain, for instance, youth unemployment is close to 50 per cent.

“How can you tell a youth of 19 or 20 years old that he might be unemployed for potentially his whole life and then expect him not to get disillusioned? What has society done for him?” asked Prof Lehmann.

But even as he slams the system, he believes that it can still be changed for the better.

This, however, will require businesses to rethink the very fundamentals of what it means to do business.

Businesses need to go beyond simply corporate social responsibility and focus on creating social wealth, he said.

“Companies need to believe that they have a social obligation beyond to just their shareholders, but to all stakeholders,” he said.

The other solution, said Prof Lehmann, is simply to ensure that public goods, like education and health, are always made accessible to everyone in society.

he said: “We constantly have to create opportunities for people to overcome the sense of unfairness in society.”

AARON LOW – Straits Times 21st September 2012
Read more at http://thepoisonappleoftheworld.com/the-costs-of-capitalisms-crisis-who-will-pay/#LxsjVOB4gqLPYuHI.99

LISTEN!!! Richard Wolff on Capitalism

Part 1 http://youtu.be/MtGB8rN_Mq4
Part 2 http://www.youtu.be/cL_S5h5N4bc

Uploaded by JsTube on Mar 3, 2011

Part 2 of 2 here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cL_S5h5N4bc

“The system we live in is called Capitalism and what I’ve been describing is what it delivers.”

Richard D. Wolff is Professor of Economics Emeritus, University of Massachusetts, Amherst where he taught economics from 1973 to 2008. He is currently a Visiting Professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, New York City. He also teaches classes regularly at the Brecht Forum in Manhattan.

Earlier he taught economics at Yale University (1967-1969) and at the City College of the City University of New York (1969-1973). In 1994, he was a Visiting Professor of Economics at the University of Paris (France), I (Sorbonne).

BA in History from Harvard College (1963);
MA in Economics from Stanford University (1964);
MA in History from Yale University (1967); and a
PhD in Economics from Yale University (1969)


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