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“Conscious Capitalism”

October 3, 2009

Another fantastic profile piece in the Wall Street Journal this weekend, this time about Whole Foods CEO John Mackey. Perhaps an unlikely standard bearer for conservative ideas, Mackey has come under fire from many of his liberal customers after he published an op-ed in the WSJ criticizing President Obama’s health care plan and proposing a number of more market-friendly reforms that have been successful at his company.

A sample of his insight:

“Mr. Mackey’s latest crusade involves traveling to college campuses across the country, trying to persuade young people that business, profits and capitalism aren’t forces of evil. He calls his concept ‘conscious capitalism.’

What is that? ‘It means that business has the potential to have a deeper purpose. I mean, Whole Foods has a deeper purpose,’ he says, now sounding very much like a philosopher. ‘Most of the companies I most admire in the world I think have a deeper purpose.’ He continues, ‘I’ve met a lot of successful entrepreneurs. They all started their businesses not to maximize shareholder value or money but because they were pursuing a dream.'”

Well said, and perhaps hints at a successful avenue of attack to start convincing independent doubters and liberals alike that this whole capitalism thing isn’t so bad, after all. The whole interview is well worth the read.

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