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Driving heroes to become monsters

Because good wasn’t good enough


In The Guardian, Robert Reich wrote in “The Monsters of American Capitalism” about how greed and the acceptance of greed is destroying our nation, its morals, and its norms.

All that Reich says is true; very scary, but very true.

There is another part of the problem of corruption of the norms that he doesn’t speak of.

People aren’t (generally) born monsters.

That people can get away with it is only part of the problem.

Another part is that doing what people feel is expected of them often requires monstrous behavior. What would have had to be different about our world so these people would have never felt the pressures to move in bad directions?

On this scale, it risks the destruction of our nation and, in fact, our world.

It happens on a smaller scale as well. Not a scale that causes fraud, corruption, etc., but still a scale that destroys lives.

In particular, I worry about what used to be called “small business” and “entrepreneurship.” How many of these early-stage companies that could have been fine, growing, profitable companies providing value for their stakeholders instead died on the alter of the pursuit of hypergrowth?

On the individual side, how many people who could have perfectly well supported their families on a 40-hour week and had happy, comfortable lives with their families instead destroyed their bodies, minds, spirits, and families pursuing the advancement that only a 70-hour week might (emphasis on the word “might”) bring them?

How often do we not say, “and it was good,” rather than not thinking that it is good enough? After all, “good” was good enough even for a God.

And God saw the light, and it was good; …

— Genesis 1:4


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Written by Russell Brand

Russell has started three successful companies, one of which helped agencies of the federal government become very early adopters of open source software, long before that term was coined. His first project saved The American taxpayer 250 million dollars. In his work within federal agency, he was often called, “the arbiter of truth,” facilitating historically hostile groups and factions to effectively work together towards common goals

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