Civilizing the Economy A New Economics of Provision

Corporate Jobs vs. People’s Needs

Posted Aug 4, 2011 by Marvin Brown in Uncategorized, 2 Comments

So congress swallowed the idea that corporations are “job creators,” but they did not say much about the kinds of jobs corporations might create, or if these jobs really address our needs.  It turns out there may be a serious disconnect here.So if corporations did create jobs (a questionable assertion), what kind of jobs would they be?  When I asked my students, they thought of jobs in sales, marketing, and human resources.  Two of the biggest industries in the United States are in information technology and financial services.  Jobs in the IT realm might create engineering jobs to make smaller cell phones and more engaging playstations.  Jobs in the financial services might involve developing new investment schemes or simply trading currencies.  There may also be an increase of jobs in the design of military weapons or in the entertainment industry.

There is still some manufacturing located in the US, such as automobile companies.  So maybe these corporations would produce more cars.   Still to produce more cars, someone needs to buy them, and it turns out that we already have more cars on the roads than we need.  In fact, if we want a sustainable economy, most of the jobs that corporations will create will make things worse rather than better.

So what kind of jobs do we need?  There is certainly a lot of work that needs to be done.   We need to stop the drug trade that dominates more and more of our lives.  We need to deprogram those citizens who have become “true-believers” in this or that cult.  We need jobs that build sustainable cities and transportation.  The list goes on and on.

It’s sad that no one asked what kind of jobs US corporations will create for us. Perhaps many of them are jobs we don’t really need.

2 Responses to “Corporate Jobs vs. People’s Needs”

  1. Abhijit Anand Prabhudan says:

    August 7, 2011 at 6:14 am

    Hi, Jobs are what is called human rentals. The concept of formal employment in jobs mainly expanded only during industrial revolution? if I am correct. What's interest me, is what will come after dominance of market led capitalism ends i.e. sustainable and resilient economy. Can we move beyond human rentals? I think about ending the concept of central bank issued monetary system and also concept of human rentals. Instead, economy can have multitude of currencies for different purposes,in different kinds of markets. Human rentals to be replaced by stewardship of commons and everyone creating 'value' using commons. There will be no employer and no employees.
  2. Marvin Brown says:

    August 8, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    Thanks for for the response. I agree with your comments. There is enough work so everyone could have a job, if we can focus on the work that needs to be done.

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Marvin T. Brown, Ph.D teaches business and organizational ethics at the University of San Francisco and Saybrook University in San Francisco.

This book is the culmination of 30 years of teaching and writing on business and society from a communicative perspective. Visit for more information.

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