I really need to read Steven Levitt's NBER papers.
Business 584 (Business in a Global Society) is taught by a post-Marxist Dane who has accepted Capitalism (or seems that way). Dr. Partum's a strict formalist when it comes to papers; I suspect that he is a formidable logician on paper, but when it comes to teaching a class on Society, he can't organize people to save his career. ;)
He presented the following idea of a changing social contract between Business and Society (the new encompasses the old):
|Quality of Workforce||Labor||Jobs/Income||Discrimination/Poverty|
|Composition of Workforce||Materials||Dividends/Interest|
|Rule of Law||Property Rights||Economic Efficiency||Trust & Convenience|
I added the bold line because not all business externalities are socially negative. We use Brands because we trust the company to not jeopardize their Brand development by selling me a lousy product. The knowledge that Brand equity loss is almost always greater than cost savings by skimping on product lowers transaction costs which means that Trust is efficient.
Next time I talk with him, I'll make some Marx/Hegel analytical puns, see if he appreciates them. ;)
Pessimists of America have approved the following New Year Countdown:
Is it over yet? no. Is it over yet? no. Is it over yet? YAAAAAAYYYYYYY!!!