Everything Has a Price: Or Businessmen Know Best

  • Bryan Gould


The dominance of neo-liberal thinking and the economic power of business leaders has had a profound, even if at times unacknowledged, impact on western society. Many of the values that were once thought to be its defining characteristics — conservative values, such as loyalty, honesty, duty and patriotism, as well as more progressive values such as tolerance, compassion, collective enterprise, social responsibility and generosity — have been increasingly abandoned in favour of a more aggressive sense that the only value by which actions and attitudes are to be judged is the pursuit of individual self-interest. It is increasingly accepted that, whatever claims might be made for what are now seen as the old-fashioned values, they can and should be trumped by the imperative of pursuing individual advancement and self-interest.


Business Leader Public Service Broadcasting Private Prison Private Finance Initiative National Health Service Organisation 
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    Peter Diamond and Emmanuel Saez, ‘The case for a progressive tax: from basic research to policy recommendations’, Journal of Economic Perspectives, vol. 25, no. 4 (2011), 165–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

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© Bryan Gould 2013

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  • Bryan Gould

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