Tag: Values (home)

ON SELFISHNESS & AMERICAN CULTURE "To bring [the Indian] out of savagery into citizenship… we need to awaken in him wants. Discontent with the teepee and the Indian camp is needed to get the Indian out of the blanket and into trousers--and trousers with a pocket in them, and with a pocket that aches to be filled with dollars!"- Dr. Merrill E. Gates (president of Amherst College) "The head chief [of the Cherokees] told us that there was not a family in that whole nation that had not a home of its own. There was not a pauper in the nation, and the nation did not owe a dollar… Yet the defect of the system was apparent. They [the Indians] have got as far as they can go, because they own their land in common… There is no selfishness, which is at the bottom of civilization. Until this people give up their lands and divide them among their citizens so that each can own theland he cultivates, they will not make much progress." - Senator Dawes (author of the Dawes Act, which forcibly divided Indian lands formerly held communally) Selfishness is the root of civilization? Amazing what people reveal about their values in such casual statements. The above would be funny were it not for the whole sad history of government dealings with the Native Americans. The quotes are from "In the Absence of the Sacred" by Jerry Mander (Sierra Club, 1991).

permalink source: Jerry Mander
tags: Contentment, Selfishness, Greed, Values

In 1945 Masura Ibuka decided to begin company in the ruins of war-torn Japan with 7 people and $1,600 in personal savings. They started the business, and then had a brainstorming session to decide what sort of products to make. They thought about sweetened bean paste soup, miniature golf equipment, and slide rules. They decided to make rice cookers, but the cookers didn’t work. So they tried a tape player, and it flopped in the market. Who wants to work in a company like that? 8 guys in a bombed out basement with $1,600 who can’t cook rice? But Masura Ibuka did something remarkable: he sat down and thought about what he wanted his company to be like. Not what he wanted them to make, or what sort of profit he wanted to turn: what he wanted the place to feel like. What kind of a company would it be, and on May 7, 1946 he wrote this: Purposes of Incorporation · To establish a place of work where engineers can feel the joy of technological innovation, be aware of their mission to society, and work to their heart’s content. · To pursue dynamic activities in technology and production for the reconstruction of Japan and the elevation of the nation’s culture. · To apply advanced technology to the life of the general public. Management Guidelines · We shall eliminate any unfair profit-seeking, persistently emphasize substantial and essential work, and not merely pursue growth. · We shall welcome technical difficulties and focus on highly sophisticated technical products that have great usefulness in society, regardless of the quantity involved. · We shall place our main emphasis on ability, performance, and personal character so that each individual can show the best in ability and skill. Now who wants to work in a company like that? Congratulations, you just signed up as one of the first seven employees of Sony.

permalink source: Built to Last pages 24 and 49-50
tags: Vision, Values

If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.

permalink source: G.K. Chesterton
tags: Courage, Discipline, Work, Values

In a competitive market, compromise - that is, accepting half a loaf - is often essential for survival. But compromise of a basic belief, such as truth or seeking to do what is right, does not result in half a loaf. It ends up being half a baby.... Half a baby is no baby at all. Half a belief is no belief at all. By: Bill Pollard Source: The Soul of The Firm, Harper Business / Zondervan, 1996, pg. 134

permalink source: Anonymous
tags: Values, Ethics

If people behave in new ways, eventually theit attitudes change in the direction of their actions. Indeed, numerous studies have shown that one of the most effective methods for altering attitudes and values is by producing a change in behavior.

permalink source: Albert Bandura, social psychologist
tags: Change, Values, Spiritual Formation

As long as members of our society hold different values, each of us will have to acknowledge the legitimacy of the other without losing faith in our own ethics. This diversity in ethical positions resembles the differences between tigers and sharks. Each is potent in its own territory but impotent in the territory of the other.

permalink source: Jerome Kagan, An Argument for Mind, 169
tags: Tolerance, Values, Ethics