Profit makes the world go ‘round — at least the business world, but when does making money become unethical. In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge, a look at Jack Welch, the celebrated C.E.O. of General Electric, who is obsessed with pleasing his shareholders. Also, business insights from great novels.
Robert Brawer was an English professor until he went into the family business aand became CEO and president of Maidenform. He tells Judith Strasser that literature - especially Arthur Miller's play "Death of a Salesman" - holds many lessons for corporate managers. Brawer is the author of "Fictions of Business." Also, Andy Schmookler, author of the forthcoming "Debating the Good Society," tells Steve Paulson how he handled his eight year old son's fascination with playing the lottery.SEGMENT 2:
Former Wall Street Journal reporter Tom O'Boyle is the author of "At Any Cost: Jack Welch, General Electric and the Pursuit of Profit." He tells Jim Fleming that Welch is a hero to Wall Street because he delivers short term profits. O'Boyle believes corporations have social responsibilities beyond making money for share-holders. Also, economist Werner DeBondt tells Jim that despite the pain of downsizing, it's the nature of capitalism to constantly look for more efficient ways of operating.SEGMENT 3:
Journalist James Buchan traces the history of money in his book "Frozen Desire: The Meaning of Money." He tells Steve Paulson that money is a powerful cultural force with a civilizing effect. Also, some critical listener comments on recent program segments.Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 99-02-21-A.
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