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New Paradigm in Humanising Corporate Management and Ethos

1 Nov 2011

We live in the era of the ascendancy of the corporation. Endowed with the rights of man and none of the responsibilities, they have proved corrosive to human values. Mike Daisey argues that working inside corporations is akin to collaboration in Vichy France, and that only when we have the courage to look at the truth about these flawed creations can we bring ethics back into this sphere of life.

Daisey has been called “the master storyteller” by the New York Times for his ground-breaking monologues which weave together autobiography, gonzo journalism, and unscripted performance. He’s been a guest on the Late Show with David Letterman, as well as a commentator and contributor to WIRED, Vanity Fair, Slate, Salon, NPR and the BBC. Daisey has toured his performances to five continents, in venues ranging from Off-Broadway to abandoned theatres in post-Communist Tajikistan, from remote islands in the South Pacific to this one at the Sydney Opera House.

His talk at the 2011 Festival of Dangerous ideas

 Very interesting conclusion at the end of the link below is -“But the first step of any degree of freedom is consciousness.”http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/stage/talk-of-the-town-20110908-1jyb1.htmlRead more: http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/stage/talk-of-the-town-20110908-1jyb1.html#ixzz1gltBqSvU

 What is the purpose of a Corporation?The Formula:Corporation > Capital > Profit & Loss > Corporate responsibility will act in the interest of it’s shareholders, instead of public’s = Shareholders & Company employee’s do not face the consequences of there actions.SO, corporations are given the right (Despite not being human) to, enter into contracts, loan and borrow money, sue and be sued, hire employees, own assets and pay taxes.

And because of it’s “Limited Liability”, the shareholders and employee’s are not held personally responsible for the company’s actions. So the real purpose of a corporation is so that the people running it don’t get held accountable for there actions.

After all, a corporation isn’t human, and it can’t go to jail.


“This is a religion, we are engaged in an act of huge ongoing worship; we have created these things, these corporations, we worship them, we give them the strength they need and they hang above us like stars, fixed in the heavens. If you go outside at night, you can see them shining down upon us, you can take the children outside, and you can point up into the sky and say: ‘Look, there’s Goldman Sachs and there’s Amazon.com, there’s Apple, and there’s Dell’ and there’s all of them arraigned across the heavens shining down on us. …And these corporations that began as trading companies… have grow and grown and are endowed with all the rights of man and none of the responsibilities and
we rail about that but we accept it; we accept it as an inevitable fact of our lives, we accept it as the way things are. When we look out into the world, we do not remember that a few hundred years ago, there were no corporations.”

– Mike Daisey, Monologuist, from Sleeping with the Enemy: collaborating with corporations sells out the Human race – Festival of Dangerous Ideas, Sydney Opera house, Oct 2011

From http://drumpasifika.bravesites.com/features (the above is about half way down the long page)


Conversation between a FB friend of mine and me
Robert Gordon Awesome speaker, Mike! Very compelling arguments. Its possible the Co Operative model is one way round it … next year is the international year of the Co Op and there are some amazing Co Ops and a whole philosophy of Humanising Capitalism through the Co Op model

17 Dec 2011 ·

Joseph Michael Soos Robert – Yes, I agree, the Co Op model seems a lot better. A very good model example is SAFCOL (The South Australian Fishermans Co-Operative Limited) which was set up by Barry LeCornu’s (Sidha in SA) father in 1945 and is still going strong. It is a co-op but is also a company. More info at http://www.safcol.com.au/content/our-story/gjgbk8They did not become a company until 1964 (see http://www.search.asic.gov.au/cgi-bin/gns030c?acn=009_486_515&juris=9&hdtext=ACN&srchsrc=1) and did not register a business name even until 1959, so they were a pure co-op from 1945 to 1964 – 19 years. I disagree with Daisey in the point that companies should not exist in that they can provide a legal framework to maintain an eternal existence for not only ethical co-ops like SAFCOL, but also to act as stable and eternal trustees for contributory foundations and enduring self-managed super funds.I think there is wriggle room for a good middle ground to apply the ethics and principles of co-ops and use the advantages and eternal characteristics and the legal framework of companies to provide a fairer future in the provision of wealth and abundance and financial protection for all of us, not just the elite and or 1%. SAFCOL in my mind seems to provide a good example of the implementation of such a middle ground.


The South Australian Fishermans Co-Operative Limited (S.A.F.C.O.L.) was founded in 1945 by a group of South Australian Fishermen to sell their catch; the first of its kind in Australia. This connection with the craft and the catch has been constant throughout our history.
Robert Gordon (18 Dec 2011)

Very interesting info there Michael – you are one of a very small minority of people on this planet who are considering these issues although almost everyone is, and will be increasingly, affected by the development/evolution of Capitalism.

I had mentioned to you that I had become interested in it all when I stated Corporate training more than a decade ago. I was inspired a few years back by the work of MIT heavies Otto Scharmer and Peter Sengue … . In my recent role/career as a boardroom advisor/consultant I have been gertting up close and personal with it all. One of my biggest clients here is CBH … the are the biggest Co Op in Aust and much of the international debate is being re-enacted out around their board table and its a big task for me to expedite that process. Its tough but its going well.

I will probably be doing some big govt contracts in SA next year and would definitely like to mneet that Siddha and discuss with him how we might be able to contribute to personal and organisational effectiveness at his Co Op.

On another note – have you delved into Ken Wilbur’s Integral Philosophy schtick ? If not, try The Theory of Everything’ . Its very compelling. I have also gone back to one of his ‘source codes’, Don Beck’s Spiral Dynamics. I love these models. They are far and away the most lucid out there currently.


(18 Dec 2011)

Joseph Michael Soos

Dear Robert,

Many thanks for your take on all this – all very interesting and clearly very deep. Your decades of TM seems to have piqued your interest in going beyond the entrenched capitalist zeitgeist in the sense that you want to keep the best of its benefits but also improve it to give it ethical innards and face so that not only will its worst excesses such as Enron, HIH, Madoff, the GFC itself, the present PIGS/Germany/France crisis will be avoided but also it will also evolve to be more inclusive of all of us to enjoy abundance fairly as a consequence of win-win-win (and more win) transactions and strategies rather than the macroscopic win-lose scenarios of late.

Please let me know when you would like to meet Barry re SAFCOL. However, I did mention it was his father that set it up and I am not sure he (father) is still alive. If so, he would be about 99. Barry ran LeCornu’s furniture business (famous icon in SA, like Harvey Norman) as the MD (not owner, which his father also set up) and so may not know much about SAFCOL and co-ops. Also, Barry is no longer MD at LeCornu’s. Dunno what he is doing now.

However, Barry did take up some of the ideas (not all – he did not want to relinquish control) of Ricardo Semler at Semco in Brazil – excerpt –

July 2005
Some call it anarchic socialism, some cutting edge capitalism. At Brazilian manufacturer Semco, the workers have sacked the boss, and run the company themselves.

At the lavish reception, one of two receptionists meet and greet the great and mighty. But no-one really ever knows which one it will be at any given time. “‘We are not sure which one will be there, because they set their own schedule” explains IT worker boss Joao Neto. There are hammocks to help workers think in comfort, and departments can choose their own furniture. Even salaries are set by the employees themselves, and bosses are just as likely to tell you to ask for more money than less. But although it sounds like a workers dream, the rest of the department keeps an eagle eye on lazy employees: “There is peer pressure for bad behaviour. If you’re here just to profit from other people’s efforts, you’re not wanted”. The easy going atmosphere has paid dividends — annual profits at Semco are up to US$ 160m these days, from $ 4m when owner Ricardo Semler took over 25 years ago. Now he has turned his attention to teaching — without the teachers. Like Semco, pupils at Lumiar primary school in Sao Paulo dictate the rules. Vive La Revolucion?”

Link at http://www.godlikeproductions.com/forum1/message879390/pg1

Re your other notes – I am not familiar with Wilbur, but will check it out along with Beck. You ought to write a book re how to fix capitalism or start a political party to see what support is out there for these new ways of doing it – I am sure many are open to better ways of managing abundance.

However, in the end, I still reckon that having some large Yogic Flying Groups of say 40,000 or more will clean up the financial shenanigans once and for all and provide a frictionless and secure and eternal abundance for all that no amount of regulation or systems will ever be able to provide via an intellectual and or litigious strategy.

Thanks again for suggesting those avenues of enquiry – I will certainly follow them up.


July 2005 Some call it anarchic socialism, some cutting edge capitalism. At Brazilian manufacturer Semco, the workers have sacked the boss, and run the company themselves.

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