Thursday, March 18, 2010


We have been inundated with increasing gobs of corporate greed and outright thievery in recent years. The most glaring evidence of this lies in the state of our economy today, brought down to a near-depression by piggish Wall Street parasites in the latter days of 2007. We also see abundant proof in the way insurance companies are spending many millions of television ad dollars to lie to and try to scare us in an effort to defeat health care reform. The very richest are getting richer by the minute, as all the rest of us fall further behind and are facing various degrees of hardship. I thought, for this post, I would sample different thoughts on corporate greed and wealth in general from a wide array of minds far greater than my own. Each in his or her own way provides us with valuable food for thought on these subjects, and on what type of people some of us truly are.

"Banking establishments are more dangerous than standing armies."
- Thomas Jefferson -

"The man who has won millions at the cost of his conscience is a failure."
- BC Forbes -

"We have always known that heedless self interest was bad morals, we now know that it is bad economics."
- Franklin D. Roosevelt -

"The most pitiful among men is he who turns his dreams into silver and gold. "
- Kahlil Gibrán -

"If the firms that employ an increasing majority of the population are driven solely to satisfy the owner's greed at the expense of working conditions, of the stability of the community, and of the health of the environment, chances are that the quality of our lives will be worse than it is now."
- Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi -

"These b**tards who run our country are a bunch of conniving, thieving, smug pricks who need to be brought down and removed and replaced with a whole new system that we control."
- Michael Moore -

"I don't mind paying people more for something if we're getting more. But just to change a deal because you're greedy and you want more? No. I'm not gonna go along with that."
- Vince McMahon -

"We demand that big business give the people a square deal; in return we must insist that when anyone engaged in big business honestly endeavors to do right he shall himself be given a square deal."
- Theodore Roosevelt -

"You show me a capitalist, and I'll show you a bloodsucker."
- Malclm X -

"Big mouthfuls often choke."
- Italian proverb -

"Experience demands that man is the only animal which devours his own kind, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor."
- Thomas Jefferson -

"My major problem with the world is a problem of scarcity in the midst of plenty ... of people starving while there are unused resources ... people having skills which are not being used."
- Milton Friedman -

"If your thinking is sloppy, your business will be sloppy. If you are disorganized, your business will be disorganized. If you are greedy, your empoyees will be greedy, giving you less and less of themselves and always asking for more."
- Michael Gerber -

"When morality comes up against profit, it is seldom that profit loses."
- Shirley Chisholm -

"Wall Street, and capitalism as it is currently practiced, are little more than Robin Hood in reverse."
- Jack Jodell -

"The history of the twentieth century was dominated by the struggle against totalitarian systems of state power. The twenty-first will no doubt be marked by a struggle to curtail excessive corporate power."
- Eric Schlosser -


Suzan said...

There's a wake-me-up call.

Thanks, Jack!


Lisa G. said...

Jack - great quotes. My favorite is Shirley Chisholm - what a leader that woman was! We need more of her right now.

Suzan said...

Hi Lisa!

So true.

My first vote for President was for Shirley Chisholm who ran in the NC primary.

I even got to see her up close once (in the elevator!) when I was in D.C. at an Antiwar Rally.

What a woman!

Thomas Jefferson not so bad either:

"Experience demands that man is the only animal which devours his own kind, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor."

- Thomas Jefferson

Thanks, Jack!


Jack Jodell said...

Hey, thanks to both of you ladies---you're the best! Shirley Chisholm was definitely a visionary pioneer and served her district well! Suzan, it's great to know that, like me, you've kept the progressive faith for all these years. When I started seeing a number of my peers peel away and become misguided Reaganite yuppies in the 1980s, it was a real BUMMER! Now, decades later, and after the Bush II debacle, a few have returned to sensibility, but many are still lost...

mud_rake said...

So much truth, so much frustration! The dream of 'free enterprise' has been scammed by the greedy so that there isn't even any 'trickle down' left.

Holte Ender said...

It's amazing that there is no wisdom, no quotes from eloquent men and women, praising corporate greed. Yet on it goes, greed has more secret admirers than we know, or it would not exist.

TomCat said...

"The most pitiful among men is he who turns his dreams into silver and gold. "
- Kahlil Gibrán

I find this particularly true in my own life. There was a time that I had a net worth in seven figures. Today I live at the poverty line. Then I was miserable. Now I am content.

Anything advertised as cheap costs 25% more.
Anything advertised as free costs 50% more.


Jack Jodell said...

Damned infuriating, isn't it?
Holte Ender,
You raise a good point, for there is nothing praiseworthy about corporate greed. Those who try to paint a rosy or noble picture of our capitalistic mess are speaking from ideal rather than actuality, and their bellies and wallets are usually amply stuffed. But what of all the others they overlook?
As you have experienced, with wealth many times comes misery. But security is one thing no one should lack.

Love the bitter true irony in your last two lines.

TomCat said...

I fully agree. Before I won my SSDI appeal, I had none. Now I have health care.

Max's Dad said...

Love the quotes, Jack. It's not often I can get the wisdom of Malcolm X, Thomas Jefferson, Vince McMahon and Jack all in one column. 23 days till opening day at Target Field!

Jack Jodell said...

I am glad you obtained all of those things which have provided your security. You, I, and everybody else here have got to keep fighting for this security for all.
Thanks, Max's Dad. I toured the park this afternoon, and it is FABULOUS! Fantastic sight lines, and there is honestly not a bad seat in the entire house. They've restored my favorite hot dog and have kept my favorite peanuts, and have added some very tasty new munchies as well. Can't wait for the season to start!I share seats with my cousin and several others, in section 215, row 2.

TRUTH 101 said...

I remember watching the Democratic Convention in 1972 and wishing I was 8 years older so I could vote for Shirley Chisolm.

Jack Jodell said...

You were a bright young man then and have remained so to this day! I am always delighted to see those who have consistently "kept the faith" on their social responsibility.