BUSINESS ROUNDTABLE’s SUDDEN ABOUT-FACE!
Article Review by Florence Field
The League has just gotten a little help in their efforts to “Making Democracy Work.” Members of the Business Roundtable, an organization of CEOs of 192 of the nation’s largest companies, recently swept aside, in a stunning about-face declaration, their decades long belief that the only legitimate goal of businesses was profit – i.e., that the interests of stockholders were to be placed above all other considerations. Instead, their new statement reflected their changing belief that corporations must now also serve the interests of a broader set of stakeholders, including consumers, employees and the communities in which they operate (Washington Post, Sept. 11, 2019). This turn-around is almost revolutionary.
The change shows the evolving awareness on the part of the corporate world that their business decisions have enormous consequences in the “real” world. – on individuals, families, communities, -- and these consequences have to be acknowledged. The ever-stagnant wages and the increasing inequality of wealth and income are also becoming public issues to be considered. These changes in the environment in which corporations now operate have made efforts to save capitalism from itself more than ever imperative.
If the statement from the Business Roundtable is not just hot air but a first step towards a more socially aware, humanitarian economic force in our country, it gives a tremendous boost to the work of the League of Women Voters in their efforts to “Making Democracy Work.”
The following are links to two articles in the Washington Post which talks in much greater detail about the current status of corporate reform commented on above: