Friday, October 28, 2005


Cheney aide charged in CIA leak, resigns

WASHINGTON: Vice President Dick Cheney’s Chief of Staff Lewis Libby was indicted on Friday on five criminal counts of obstruction of justice, perjury and making false statements after a two-year investigation into the leak of a covert CIA operative’s identity.

Soon after the indictment, the White House announced that Libby had resigned. Libby “submitted his resignation letter earlier today. It was accepted, and he is no longer at the White House”, spokesman Scott McClellan said.President George W Bush’s top political adviser Karl Rove was not indicted along with Libby, but special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald has made clear to Rove that he remains under investigation, legal sources said.Libby, who played a major behind-the-scenes role in building the case for the Iraq war, was accused of lying in 2003 about how and when he learned and disclosed to reporters classified information about the covert operative, Valerie Plame.

If convicted, Libby faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison and a $1.25 million fine, prosecutors said.Plame’s identity was leaked to the media after her diplomat husband, Joseph Wilson, accused the Bush administration of twisting prewar intelligence to support military action against Iraq. Wilson said it was done deliberately to erode his credibility. reuters


2,200 firms implicted in UN oil-for-food scandal: report 2005-10-28 10:14:25

Paul Volcker, committee chair for the Independent Inquiry Committee into the United Nations Oil-For-Food Programme, delivers findings during the presentation of the last report in New York, October 27, 2005.

BEIJING, Oct. 28 -- Investigators of the UN oil-for-food program issued a final report Thursday accusing more than 2,200 companies and some politicians of colluding with Saddam Hussein's regime to bilk the humanitarian operation of $1.8 billion.

The 623-page document exposed the global scope of a scam that allegedly involved such name-brand companies as DaimlerChrysler and Siemens AG, as well as a former French U.N. ambassador, a firebrand British politician and the president of Italy's Lombardi region.

Under the program, Iraq sold a total of $64.2 billion of oil to 248 companies, of which 139 paid illicit surcharges. In turn, some 3,614 companies sold $34.5 billion of humanitarian goods to Iraq and 2,253 paid kickbacks, the report said.

The program, which began in December 1996 and ended in 2003, was aimed at easing the impact of UN sanctions imposed in 1990 after Baghdad's troops invaded Kuwait. It allowed Iraq to sell oil to pay for food, medicine and other goods.

But Saddam, who could choose the buyers of Iraqi oil and the sellers of humanitarian goods, corrupted the program by awarding contracts to and getting kickbacks from favored buyers.

The companies involved came from 66 nations, including large corporations in the United States, Russia, France, Germany and Switzerland. Russia, then an ally of Iraq, led the list of both legitimate and illegitimate oil contracts, getting $19.3 billion from Iraq, some 30 percent of all oil sales, according to the Reuters report.

The U.N.-established Independent Inquiry Committee, led by former U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, also named politicians in Russia, France, Britain, Italy and elsewhere who were given favors by Saddam in his quest to get U.N. sanctions lifted.

The report blamed shoddy UN management and the world's most powerful countries for allowing it to go on for years, underscoring the urgent need to reform the United Nations.

"The corruption of the program by Saddam would not nearly have been so pervasive if there had been diligent management by the United Nations and its agencies," said Paul Volcker.

Buddha says; "If a man does something wrong, let him not do it again and again. Let him find no pleasure in his sin, painful is the accumulation of wrongdoings."

Thursday, October 27, 2005


You Have No Boss

Working as a business leader in Gore's military-fabrics division, Terri Kelly often finds herself disabusing outsiders of the notion that life in a world without authority figures is Utopia.

From: Fast Company By: Michael Kaplan

If you've nicknamed your boss the Walking Plague, Terri Kelly is a woman you will envy: she's never had a boss. After graduating from the University of Delaware in 1983 with a BS in engineering, Kelly went to work for W.L. Gore and Associates, a $1.1 billion company best known as a developer of high-tech fabric. If you've worn a Gore-Tex jacket, you've had a close encounter with a Gore product.

A visionary corporation, Gore is built from a blueprint that its founder refers to as a "lattice" (as opposed to a "ladder"). There is no visible hierarchy at Gore -- and no job titles. In fact, there are no bosses. Instead, there are leaders who achieve their positions by gaining followers. Business goals are established by consensus.

Gore's internal "structure" was put into place in 1958 by cofounder Bill Gore, an ex-DuPont exec who believed that leaders should be chosen by the people who follow them. Working as a business leader in Gore's military-fabrics division, Kelly often finds herself disabusing outsiders of the notion that life in a world without authority figures is Utopia.

Fantasy: You're responsible to no one.

Reality: You're responsible to everyone.

"Although I'm a business leader for military fabric, I'm a leader only if there are people who are willing to follow me," says Kelly. "A project doesn't move forward unless people buy into it. You cultivate followership by selling yourself, articulating your ideas, and developing a reputation for seeing things through." Here is Kelly's three-point plan for convincing fellow Goreans to buy in on her projects.

Resolve the potentially fatal flaw.

After conceiving an idea, Kelly scrutinizes the plan to find its weakest link and takes it to the person who oversees that part of the business. "Let's say I've come up with a design for a winter sleeping bag she says. "I'd go to the person responsible for marketing the bag and find out whether there's demand for it. If there isn't, I'd go back and try to reposition the plan. If he's excited by the idea and thinks it's viable, I'd bring him in on the project to help me develop it."

Give away ownership.

Once Kelly is convinced there's a market for the sleeping bag, she starts casting about for people from other divisions -- manufacturing, design, fabric, sales -- to form a core team and develop the product. "It's a process of giving away ownership of the idea to people who want to contribute and be a part of it. The project won't go anywhere if you don't let people run with it."

Connect the project with the Big Picture.

Unlike people in hierarchical companies, Kelly cannot simply draft the members of her team. She's got to win them over. Her most reliable tactic is to show how the project will improve Gore's bottom line.

Fantasy: There's no boss standing between you and a raise.

Reality: Everyone stands between you and a raise.

"Salary raises depend on the written reviews of your peers, not on a boss's recommendation," says Kelly, who adds that the reviews include a numerical ranking for each person within a particular department. "The idea is that employees are not accountable to the president of the company; they're accountable to their colleagues." Achieving a high ranking, Kelly explains, depends in part on your ability to work on high-profile projects.

Follow these steps:

Establish your credibility.

"You won't get invited to join the hot teams until you've already contributed to projects that weren't so attractive," says Kelly. "To get ahead, you must first demonstrate that you can take ownership of a project and stick with it. Anyone can talk about going the extra mile. First you've got to prove to everyone else that you can do it."

Pursue the team of your dreams.

"When it's not immediately clear who will be a good fit on a particular team, you hope that somebody will step up and express excitement about being a part of it. People here should never wait around to be asked to join a team. They've got to be proactive. They have to volunteer."

Buddha says; "Happy indeed are the men-of-worth, in them no craving's seen. The "I" conceit is rooted up; delusion's net is burst."

Wednesday, October 26, 2005



Stanford University.s MBA Program Ranks #1 in Beyond Grey Pinstripes Survey

NEW YORK, NY, October 19, 2005 . A biennial report . Beyond Grey Pinstripes, released
jointly today at Citigroup by World Resources Institute and the Aspen Institute . finds that more business schools are doing a better job preparing students for the reality of tomorrow.s markets, equipping them with an understanding of the social, environmental, and economic perspectives required for business success in a competitive global economy.

The 2005 survey finds that an increasing number of business schools are offering courses
in ethics, corporate social responsibility, or environmental sustainability.

In today.s global business environment, there is tremendous opportunity to create social
and environmental value while doing what is right for the business,. said Scott Johnson, vice
president, Global Environmental and Safety Actions, SC Johnson. .More and more corporations
will demand leaders who understand these opportunities and can deliver results. So it is critical
that business schools meet this demand by stressing a focus on global stakeholders, not simply

In the survey, changes in coursework proved noticeable. Of the 91 business schools
surveyed on six continents, 54 percent require a course in ethics, corporate social responsibility,sustainability, or business and society, up from 45 percent in 2003 and 34 percent in 2001. Additionally, the report finds that some leading schools are launching innovative courses on such topics as exploring private-sector approaches for addressing problems in low-income markets.

The number of these courses offered has increased dramatically since 2003.
As a clear indication of the importance of these issues globally, three of the top five
ranked schools, and 12 of the top 30, are located outside the United States.
Jonathan Lash, president, World Resources Institute, added, .To be competitive,
corporations need to recast social and environmental problems as business growth opportunities.

These schools are leading the way in providing students with the skills that are becoming
increasingly valuable to the bottom line. Such skills are needed to meet the emerging challenges
of climate change, water scarcity, labor issues, and poverty alleviation with innovative
technologies and entrepreneurship..

Although the business schools surveyed are making important progress, the report's authors note that teaching and research on these topics often remain limited to disconnected
pockets of innovation. While students at schools ranked in the top 30 were exposed to ethical,
social, and environmental issues in an average of 25 percent of their required coursework, other
students saw these issues only 8 percent of the time. Only 4 percent of faculty at the surveyed
schools published research on related issues in top, peer-reviewed journals during the survey

MBA programs still have a silo mentality when it comes to teaching business ethics as
well as social and environmental stewardship,. added Judith Samuelson, executive director of the Aspen Institute's Business and Society Program. For MBA students to be truly prepared for the challenges they will face as executives after graduation, these topics need to be integrated across the business-school curriculum and in other required courses such as accounting, economics,finance, information technology, marketing, operations, and strategy..

The Beyond Grey Pinstripes report identified the Top 30 MBA programs by inviting
nearly 600 MBA programs to report on their coursework and research; 1,842 courses and 828
journal articles from leading peer-reviewed business publications were analyzed.

The MBA program at Stanford University distinguished itself not only by offering a large
number of courses that addressed social and environmental issues in business, but also by the
relatively large proportion of students who actually took those classes.

The top 30 programs as ranked by Beyond Grey Pinstripes are:

1. Stanford, USA
2. ESADE, Spain
3. York (Schulich), Canada
4. ITESM, Mexico
5. Notre Dame (Mendoza), USA
6. George Washington, USA
7. Michigan (Ross), USA
8. North Carolina (Kenan-Flagler), USA
9. Cornell (Johnson), USA
10. Wake Forest (Babcock), USA
11. UC Berkeley (Haas), USA
12. Nottingham, UK
13. Virginia (Darden), USA
14. Western Ontario (Ivey), Canada
15. Boston College, USA
16. Erasmus (Rotterdam), The Netherlands
17. Colorado (Leeds), USA
18. New Mexico (Anderson), USA
19. Asian Institute of Management (SyCip),
The Philippines
20. Portland State, USA
21. Yale, USA
22. McGill, Canada
23. Case Western (Weatherhead), USA
24. INSEAD, France
25. Calgary, Canada
26. Jyväskylä, Finland
27. Navarra (IESE), Spain
28. Wisconsin-Madison, USA
29. Minnesota (Carlson), USA
30. Georgetown (McDonough), USA

The report is the only global survey that evaluates MBA programs for their efforts to
prepare graduates on social and environmental stewardship in business. A full description of the
report, its methodology, and MBA program rankings are available at

Buddha says; "The glorious chariots of kings wear out, and the body wears out and grows old; but the virtue of the good never grows old, and thus they can teach the good to those who are good."

Wednesday, October 19, 2005


Press release from: CERES

Fast-Food Giant McDonald’s Wins Approval as Ceres Partner; Pledges Further Improvements in Social & Environmental Programs

(CSRwire) BOSTON – Citing the company’s progress on sustainability reporting and commitment to continuous enhancement of its social and environmental performance, the Ceres board of directors today announced it has approved fast food giant McDonald’s Corp. as a Ceres company.

McDonald’s is among 65 companies – including nearly a dozen Fortune 500 companies – to be accepted into the Ceres network of companies. Boston-based Ceres is a 16-year-old coalition of investors, environmental organizations and other public interest groups working with companies to tackle sustainability challenges. “From energy efficiency, to food resource sustainability, to ‘greening’ its supply chain, McDonald’s has made great strides improving its social and environmental performance,” said Ceres President Mindy S. Lubber. “More importantly, the company wants to do even more.

Working with investors, environmental groups and other stakeholders, Ceres and McDonald’s are excited about future opportunities to take sustainability deeper into the company and its supply chain, and to encourage improvements and share their expertise across the rest of the fast food industry.” “We are especially excited about joining Ceres because they’ll help us continue to strengthen the linkage between CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) performance and its relevance to the investment community,” said Ken Barun, Senior Vice President, Corporate Responsibility, McDonald’s Corporation. “Ceres brings forth a unique expertise and a terrific network to help McDonald’s advance its social and environmental efforts.” McDonald’s has instituted various programs to reduce its environmental footprint and make its global operations more sustainable and transparent.

Among these efforts:

McDonald’s issued its first Corporate Responsibility Report in 2002 and a second, more substantive Corporate Responsibility Report in 2004. Both of the reports follow reporting guidelines in the Ceres-created Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the de-facto international standard for reporting on environmental, social and business issues.

Responsible purchasing programs designed to protect fishing stocks, animal welfare and forest resources. Fish sourcing environmental guidelines, for example, were implemented in 2003 and 2004 after a close collaboration with fish suppliers and Conservation International.

Balanced lifestyle and nutrition initiatives that focus on more menu choices, additional food and nutrition information, and the promotion of physical activity. These include expanded salad and fruit offerings and the phasing out of “Super Size” options. Since 2003, McDonald’s has sold over 400 million salad meals and is now buying more fresh apples – estimated at more than 50 million pounds in 2005 – than any other restaurant chain in the country.

Implemented a far-reaching Supplier Code of Conduct to ensure safe and healthy work environments and fair compensation and work schedules for employees. The company carried out more than 1,500 external assessments this year to ensure that the code is being complied with. Many of the company’s programs are the result of close stakeholder engagement and collaboration with animal welfare experts, environmental groups, paper suppliers, shareholders and dozens of others.

Among the stakeholders the company has worked closely with is the New York City Comptroller’s office, which has a large financial stake in McDonald’s as part of the $90 billion in assets it manages for five retirement funds. "I applaud McDonald’s for taking this important step towards continuous improvements of its global business impacts,” said New York City Comptroller William C. Thompson Jr., referring to the company’s decision to become a Ceres company. "Collaboration with Ceres helps to assure investors of McDonald’s commitment to employ best practices of corporate social responsibility and sustainability reporting. This relationship will serve to enhance the long-term interests of the company and its shareholders."

Companies that join Ceres must commit to engage with shareholders and other stakeholders on sustainability issues, to report publicly on sustainability performance and to make additional sustainability improvements. For more information about Ceres, visit

Buddha says; This is the beginning of the life of the wise monk; self-control of the senses, happiness, living under moral law, and whose life is pure and who are striving."


Press release from: Novethic
Oct. 19, 2005
Major Investors Driving SRI in France

73% of all investors surveyed that have assets in excess of one billion euros have already made a Socially Responsible Investment (SRI)

(CSRwire) France’s major institutional investors invest a growing share of their assets on the basis of a socially responsible approach. This trend is gaining strength. 73% of all investors surveyed that have assets in excess of one billion have already made an SRI investment, compared with 35% for other investors.

The major investors intend to increase their SRI investments: three-fourths of those that have already invested on the basis of SRI criteria say they will continue to do so, and 46% say they plan to invest more than 5% of their total assets on the basis of extra-financial criteria within three years. Nearly half of them feel that this approach should eventually apply to all their investments.

Currently pending, the FRR’s request for proposal (600 million euros) is being followed with interest by those surveyed. In fact, 60% think that they will gain valuable insight from the FRR’s program. A majority of institutional investors consider that SRI meets their needs in terms of ethical values as well as their financial performance goals. Through SRI, institutional investors are looking for a way to invest their reserves in a way that is consistent with the values of their institution and their responsibility as investors.

Some 40% of those who practice SRI consider that it offers a better way of taking financial risks into account over the long term. In addition, the survey reveals a strong rise in satisfaction with the financial returns offered by assets invested on the basis of SRI criteria: 52% say they are satisfied, versus 17% in 2004. 70% of investors expect performance levels that equal or surpass those of conventional funds.

Investors that have yet to make SRI-based decisions remain somewhat skeptical of the approach, which they consider to be too “marketing” oriented. In addition, they feel they lack sufficient visibility, particularly in terms of performance. Reputation of asset managers When they choose an asset manager, institutional investors are particularly attentive to the quality of the SRI management process (the top criterion for 69%). While DEXIA AM, I.DE.A.M and MACIF Gestion top the list of the most well-known SRI specialists this year, AXA IM, BNP Paribas AM, Groupama AM, IXIS AM and Sarasin Expertise are tied for fourth place. These close rankings reflect the strong commitment that several players have made in recent months to SRI.

About Novethic: A subsidiary of Caisse des dépôts et consignations, Novethic is a leading center for resources, information and expertise pertaining to SRI and corporate social and environmental responsibility. Its web site ( is a comprehensive resource for responsible economic actors. About Amadeis; Amadeis is an independent investment consulting firm. In addition to working with institutional investors and asset managers, Amadeis conducts analysis and research extending to all aspects of asset management.

About BNP Paribas AM BNP Paribas Asset Management; one of Europe’s leading asset managers, got an early lead in the field of socially responsible and sustainable investment. Leveraging the expertise of a dedicated team and its independent approach, BNP Paribas AM helps institutional clients understand the importance of extra-financial criteria, and offers a full range of products aligned with the underlying principles of socially responsible and sustainable investment.


The next force for business transformation won't be digital, it will be horticultural. That's the disruptive idea behind the awe-inspiring Eden Project.

By: Ian Wylie , Fast Company, Oct. 19, 2005
Who: Tim SmitAffiliation: Cofounder and chief executive, the Eden ProjectLocation: St. Austell, Cornwall, England

The next great force for business transformation won't be digital, argues Tim Smit; it will be horticultural. Smit is an archaeologist turned musician turned botanist who is planting the seeds of change at the Eden Project, his awe-inspiring, $120 million facility in Cornwall, England. Eden is the world's largest greenhouse, containing 250,000 plants in two giant, enclosed biomes.

But Eden is about more than watching a garden grow. Smit believes that over the next 20 years, in-depth research on plants will result in new materials of unprecedented strength and flexibility, new sources of food and medicine, and new approaches to renewable energy. "We are on the verge of a revolution that is greater than any in the 20th century," says Smit. "There are now composite materials that you can make from plants that are stronger than steel and Kevlar. The implications are phenomenal. Every country in the world could have access to advanced materials created from their own plants."

Barely a year after it opened, the 34-acre facility has become one of Europe's most popular and celebrated tourist attractions. Meanwhile, Smit is hard at work on his next big project: a campus where business leaders, artists, scientists, engineers, and bureaucrats will commit to spending five days a year sharing their knowledge. "Tithing College is central to my manifesto," Smit explains. "It will attract those who want to imagine a new beginning and contribute to the debate, What does 'great' look like, and how do we get there?"

Visit the Eden Project on the Web (

Buddha says; "One in All, All in One- if only this is realized, no more worry about you not being perfect.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005


or......"From Fountain Pen to Impoverished Prince"

Dr. Graham Howe, one of Britain's top ranking Psychiatrists said; " To read a little of Buddhism is to realize that the Buddhists knew, two thousand five hundred years ago, far more about our modern problems of psychology than they have been given credit for. They studied these problems long ago and found the answers also. We are now discovering the Ancient Wisdom of the East."

The Buddha was the first to throw intelligent light on the mind process. The important thing for us to remember is that the mind controls the speech and body action, so that the nature of the mind determines what we say and do.

Because the Buddha taught his followers, that they themselves make or mar their own happiness, it becomes necessary for us to rely on our own efforts and not seek salvation from a deity or supernatural being. Now if a man must rely on himself, it is weakness to seek aid and favours by praying. Instead of prayer, He taught his students to meditate and develop the mind so that we would be able to to face the difficulties of life, and overcome them.

Neither suffering nor happiness is permanent. It only requires a little patience and fortitude to wait for things to change. This was a very difficult process for me to achieve. Since I was a small child I grew up with the belief that God would either protect or punish me. If I did good, he would protect me, if not I would pay the ulitmate retribution. In the Jewish belief system, there is one day when we must atone for all our sins of the year, and that is indeed the holiest of days, Yom Kippur.

On this day, we are told to admit to all our sins, and we will be forgiven by God, and he will write us into the book of life for another year. If not, dire consequences will befall us. Until a Jewish boy has his Bar Mitzvah, his parents are responsible for all of his sins, but when he reaches the age of thirteen, he is considered entering manhood and therefore becomes totally accountable. The mind bogles with all the things we got away with as kids. But can you imagine the rude awakening after your Bar Mitzvah speech, that you are now being judged for everything you do....I immediately went home and hid my Playboys. Because of an over-reactionary Mother, all things physical became catastrophic. So Mother and I would engage in ongoing prayer sessions with every minor cold and scratch.

Another inherited trait with European Jews is "superstition". I was never allowed to say I was well or happy, because to do so would cause an "anhora"..meaning an evil spell of some sort. If somebody asked me how I was and I said I was doing great, my Mother would immediately invoke a protective clause by uttering the words "canahora..poo poo poo."...roughly speaking..spitting three times. Hence the reason, why the majority of Jewish men are in therapy or psychiatrists themselves. And you think your path to buddhahood is challenging, welcome to my world.

The Buddhist is at a great advantage with this knowledge, because he does not lose sight of reality during the happy moments and he does not give away to despair in the face of misfortune. The Buddhist knows that existence is controlled by balanced natural laws and prayer can only be to express a desire that these shall change for one's individual benefit, or that we wish for something we have not earned or are entitled to. If natural laws could be upset in this way we would be obtaining things at the expense of someone else.

In practically every one of the great religions of the world, "faith" is required of the followers, because many of the teachings and doctrines are incompatable with reason. Buddhism strikes a great contrast in this respect. the Buddha asked only for confidence, based on understanding and reason. Blind acceptance is of no use to an individual because it does not require the depth of knowledge which makes it of value or serve as a guide on the Path. This broad outlook is probably one of the reasons why it is now finding so many ready converts in the West.

So is this the true story of the Jew who became a Buddhist? Not really, I'm just a fellow traveller on the journey seeking the same things you are. This then, is my ongoing invitation to join me.

Buddha says, " If one find a friend with whom to fare, rapt in the well-abiding rapt, surmounting dangers one and all with joy fare with him mindfully."


We have spoken many times about the eight fold path of the Buddha in leading us into this new era of "Enlightened Capitalism" RIGHT ACTION and RIGHT LIVELIHOOD are fundamental as we begin our journey.

Right Action is a direct result of refined ideas. If our words are of the nature of greed, hatred and delusion then must our action be likewise. How different are actions that arise out of their opposites: generosity, compassion, and understanding.

Right Livelihood encourages us to seek a way of sustaining ourselves which minimizes the impact we have on others and the world in general. It encourages us to think differently, to appreciate the interconnectdness of all things and to tread lightly with due care and compassion.

Here are a number of organizations that are committed to these principles, along with corporate governance, ethics and social responsibility. Through their effforts we can hold the business world accountable.

Alliance for Democracy

The mission of the Alliance for Democracy is "to free all people from corporate domination of politics, economics, the environment, culture and information; to establish true democracy; and to create a just society with a sustainable, equitable economy." The Alliance is a new Populist movement--not a political party--aiming to end the large corporations' domination.

Corporate Governance

Provides news, internet links, a small reference library and a discussion forum and network for stakeholders who believe active participation by shareowners in governing corporations will enhance their ability to create wealth. We believe broad based of systems of accountability must be built into the governance structures of corporations themselves.

Positive Futures Network

An independent, nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting people's active engagement in creating a just, sustainable, and compassionate world.

Dedicated to restoring democratic authority over corporations, reviving grassroots democracy, and revoking the power of money and corporations to control government and civic society. works proactively for systemic change, rather than react to the agendas of corporate and moneyed interests. They work in both grassroots organizing and public education by introducing models for systemic change into public discussion through mass media, public presentations, editorials, single-issue primers, and skill-building workshops.

Team Production

The Team Production model of corporate governance, a new framework for analyzing corporate law and corporate governance, counters the "shareholder primacy" response to recent corporate fraud and failures. Its authors instead assert that a healthier response acknowledges the many contributors to a corporation. In addition to shareholders, this "team" can include employees, creditors, consumers, and others.

Transparency International

A non-governmental organization dedicated to increasing government accountability and curbing both international and national corruption. TI's movement has multiple concerns: humanitarian, as corruption undermines and distorts development and leads to increasing levels of human rights abuse; democratic, as corruption undermines democracies and in particular the achievements of many developing countries and countries in transition; ethical, as corruption undermines a society's integrity; and practical, as corruption distorts the operations of markets and deprives ordinary people of the benefits which should flow from them.

Business Ethics Magazine

The premier publication of the movement for greater social responsibility in business.

Caux Roundtable

A global network of senior business leaders committed to principled business leadership, who believe that business has a crucial role in developing and promoting equitable solutions to key global issues. CRT's mission is to advocate implementation of the Caux Round Table Principles for Business through which sustainable and socially responsible prosperity can emerge as the foundation for a fair, free and transparent society.

Business for Social Responsibility

Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) is a global organization that helps member companies achieve success in ways that respect ethical values, people, communities and the environment. BSR provides information, tools, training and advisory services to make corporate social responsibility an integral part of business operations and strategies. A nonprofit organization, BSR promotes cross sector collaborations and contributes to global efforts to advance the field of corporate social responsibility.

Institute of Noetic Sciences

A nonprofit membership organization that both conducts and sponsors research into the workings and powers of the mind, including perceptions, beliefs, attention, intention, and intuition. Inquires about phenomena that don't fit into the conventional scientific model. IONS sponsors publications, conferences and their website and supports community building by providing ways for members and colleagues to share their experiences and ideas with one another through community groups, online discussion groups, and other networking opportunities.

Robert K. Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership

Supports those who, through the practice of servant-leadership, seek to create organizations in which individual stakeholders become healthier, wiser, freer, and more autonomous; and in so doing, build a better, more humane society which welcomes the full diversity of the human family. Originally founded in 1964 as the Center for Applied Ethics, Inc., the center was renamed the Robert K Greenleaf Center in 1985.

Social Venture Network

A non-profit organization of entrepreneurs dedicated to changing the way the world does business so as to create a more just, humane and sustainable society. Promotes progressive solutions to social problems. The Network provides opportunities to exchange ideas, share problems and solutions and collaborate on an ad hoc basis with a group of thoughtful peers. Activities include two national conferences a year, regional and local events, bimonthly newsletters, an interactive website, and other services. Founded in 1987, SVN has grown to a community of over 400 business owners, investors and social activists.

World Business Academy

A global, membership-based, nonprofit, nonpolitical organization centered upon the role and responsibility of business in relation to critical environmental and social dilemmas. They assist business leaders in addressing some of the most serious dilemmas, e.g. unemployment, corruption, ecological abuse, through sustainable business strategies. The Academy provides self-learning educational resources, research results and publications to members; offers forums and seminars in the areas of Corporate Social Responsibility, Leadership, and the Development of Human Potential at Work in virtually every country; and conducts research projects.

Buddha says; "And those in high thought and in deep contemplation, with ever-living power advance on the path, they in the end find nirvana, the supreme peace and infinite joy".


Here are links to social investing:

Calvert Social Investment Foundation

Calvert Foundation offers a professionally managed investment note that individuals and institutions utilize to finance local community programs. Activities fund affordable housing, micro-credit and non-profit social enterprises across the country and around the world - creating jobs, building homes and changing lives through your investments.

Green Money Journal
A bimonthly newsletter (24 pages) featuring socially and environmentally responsible investing (SRI) business and consumer resources. The web site- contains all the articles in the newsletter plus much more. Links to other socially and environmentally responsible companies and organizations are included.

Investors' Circle
A non-profit national network of angel and institutional investors, foundation officers and entrepreneurs who seek to balance financial, social and environmental returns. IC is dedicated to catalyzing the flow of capital to private companies that deliver commercial solutions to social and environmental problems. Each year IC sponsors venture fairs and a national conference, in addition to circulating deal flow to its members. Since 1992, Investors' Circle has facilitated the investment of over $80 million in 120 socially responsible companies and small venture funds. Behind each of these investments is the belief that business -- not government or philanthropy -- must lead the transition to a sustainable economy.

Social Investment Forum
A national nonprofit membership association dedicated to promoting the concept and practice of socially and environmentally responsible investing. Comprised of more than 600 financial professionals and institutions, including financial professionals, institutions, researchers, foundations, community development organizations and public educators. Membership is open to any organization or practitioner who wishes to participate in the socially responsible investing field. Member benefits include networking opportunities, information, advocacy and benefits.

Trillium Asset Management
For over twenty years, Trillium Asset Management Corporation has been a leader in socially responsible investing. We are an employee-owned firm, guided by a belief that investing can return a solid competitive profit to the investor while also promoting social and economic justice. Our professional staff, in four offices across the country, carries on a mission begun in 1982: To help our clients meet their financial goals and have a positive impact on society through socially responsible investing. Trillium Asset Management manages investment portfolios for a broad array of individuals and institutions, including high net worth families, foundations, churches, endowments, and the entertainment industry. We manage equity, balanced and fixed income accounts with a client-driven, highly personalized management style.


Despite its wealth, the United States, as a percentage of its population, has the smallest middle class and the greatest gap between rich and poor of any industrial nation. As more and more Americans fall through the cracks into privation and poverty, they also fall prey to the predatory economic institutions that Howard Karger examines so thoroughly and powerfully in his book"Shortchanged". Like such classics as "Nickel and Dimed", this book is a wakeup call for action to redirect our economy towards fairness and ethics.

What is fundamentally right about the above statement and so precariously wrong? Well, if we take a hard look at the underbelly of America we might not like what we see. A nation priding itself as a land of great opportunity and wealth. A land where immigrants came and staked their claim to the American dream. All things are possible in America, just start a business and it will be followed by enourmous wealth. That was the poster. An inviting scenario....Jim Jones said..."Drink the Kool Aid and you'll reach Nirvana". Somebody lied!

I remember 40 years ago when I graduated from the University of Montana, my Uncle Leon who lived in Philadelphia asked me a pretty direct question. Are you going to stay in the U.S. or go back to Canada? I said I hadn't made up my mind yet. His response was equally vocal and demonstrative. "How could you possibly think of returning to Canada". You will not have the same opportunities to get rich as you can in the good ole USA. Also, Canada is so backward and America is blessed with so much more of everything. He left out the part about having more "poverty" in America than Canada, and a health system that helps you get better as opposed to a system that enables the rich to get well and the poor to get sicker, and the middle class to go bankrupt. But hey, more incentive to make more money...right? Wrong What price glory?

My Uncle and his family and for that matter all my American relatives equated a high degree of success in life to the acquisition of wealth and personal fortune. Becoming a successful lawyer and doctor or owning a multi milliion dollar company with the accompanying "nice" Jewish girl and split level mansion in the burbs was the ultimate goal and deserving of bragging rights with the rest of the family. God forbid you should be a truck driver or shoe salesman. Much pity would befall your parents for producing such a social misfit.

It's the "Goodbye Columbus" syndrome of Jewish dating with Richard Benjamin and Ali Macgraw. A Jewish man and a jewish woman meet and while attracted to each other find that their worlds are very different. She is the archetypical Jewish-American-Princess, very emotionally involved with her parents world and the world they have created for her while he is much less dependent on his family. They begin an affair which brings more differences to the surface.

Neil Klugman works in the public library and lives in New York with his Jewish aunt rather than in Arizona with his parents. College-girl Brenda Patimkin very much lives with her well-to-do Jewish family. Even so, the two are attracted and start seeing each. As the relationship gets more serious, Brenda's mother gets increasingly hostile to Neil, thinking her daughter would end up marrying beneath her.

There was a great joke circulating the Katskills in the 50's by that famous Jewish comedian, Mickey Katz, better known as the Borscht Jester. "Two elderly Jewish women were walking with their granchildren on the boardwalk in Atlantic City, and each one turned to the other and said, what beautiful grandchildren they had. Then, Mrs Goldstein asked Mrs. Rabinovitch how old they were? To which Mrs. Rabinovitch replied, "Well the doctor is three and the lawyer is two. "

There is a certain degree of logic and rationale to this syndrome. After all most Jewish immigrants that came to the States had escaped the unspeakable horrors of the Nazis in concentration camps, and so they were holocaust survivors. My belief is that they wanted a life for their kids thst was totally opposite to what they had experienced. So they went a little overboard, and wanted their kids to have EVERYTHING.

Also, there was a belief that the only way a Jew could escape anti-semitism was to work for themselves. I took that belief wth me into society and became paranoid every time I had a gentile boss. Would he find out I was Jewish and then find a reason to fire me. The best decision I ever made was to go away to an American college with a population on campus of 10 Jewish students and 3,200 gentiles. My first roomate was Tom Gillon from Chester, Montana who never heard of a Jew and my second was George Paige, a black football player from Portland, whose father was a judge. When I tried out for the basketball team, I met Ray Lucien, the only black guy on the team. Ray was from Baton Rouge and his was a poverty striken family. The only jacket Ray had, was the letterman jacket he got for being a jock.

How wonderful those days color blinders...George and Ray and I having dinner together talking about our futures. We obviously took different paths, but I believe we had one thing in common, a geuine compassion for each other and our trust and love for one another. In that moment in time I could not understand the resentment my realtives had for the blacks in South Philadelphia and a view of them being no more than second class citizens. I would say to them, how can you persecute them, when we have been the persectued ones from generation to generation. Their answer was a subtle form of racism...."You don't know how they live because your'e not around them".

I love my extended Philadelphia family, but I don't have to like their beliefs. The scary part is that I honestly believe they represent a lot of thinking of mainstream white Americans in large urban cities. They moved three times from their South Philly home, and each time it was to an all white suburban neighbourhood. When Overbrook Park became inhabited by blacks they moved to Overbrook Hills and then finally to an all- white gated retirement comunity in Florida.

I began to become less paranoid and more accepting of the equalty in us all. Having grown up entirely in a protective "Jewish only" environment, I began to assimilate with the rest of the world. Thus begun my ascent into having "compassion" for all beings. Not an easy task for a "brain washed" only child who believed everything his mother and father told him. This is not to say I did not experience my own share of bullying and anti-semitism as a child. I did, but my Dad , God Bless him, always told me to not fight back and just walk away and feel sorry for the attackers. It was in that moment that I became more passive than aggressive in the resolution of conflict. That's not to say that I was a classic "wimp", but more judicious in my understanding of people, their motivation to anger and the price to pay for fighting and war.

Buddha says; "To feel true compassion for all beings, we must remove any partiality from our attitude toward them." Our normal view of others is dominated by fluctuating and discriminating emotions. We feel a sense of closeness toward loved ones. Toward strangers or acquaintencances we feel distant. And then for those indiviudals who we perceive as hostile, unfriendly, or alloof, we feel aversion or contempt.

The criterion for our classifying people as friends or enemies seems straightforward If a person has caused us difficuty or harm, he or she is a foe. Mixed with our fondness for our loved ones are emotions such as attachment and desire that inspires passionate intimacy. Similarly, we view those whom we dislike with negative emotions such as anger and hatred. Consequesntly, our compassion toward others is limited, partial, prejudicial, and condiitoned by whether we feel close to them Genuine compassion must be unconditional. Now I'm sure, if you are reading this on the New York subway, it's pretty difficult to adopt this concept and attempt to view the stranger sitting next to you with compassion.

However , if we are to begin this journey towards enlightenment and follow the eight fold path of Buddha, compassion is high on the list. From personal experience, I can tell you that once you become aware of this it really does open your eyes to the way we are used to interacting with all beings. Every conversation I have now, every busines meeting, every discussion with whomever; my interaction with the grocery clerk at the check out, the guy filling my tank, the pharmasict and the postal clerk. I catch myslef only partially listening to their answers, as I am alerady moving ahead with my agenda. Now I pay particular attention to what they are saying, who they are, what they have to say about their business and their life. I have discovered you can connect with people at a deeper more compassionate level, without becoming their therapist. And you can be free to just LISTEN!

There is one last consideration, and it comes from the Dalai Lama; "As human beings, our well-being very much depends upon that of others, and our very survival is a result of contributions made by inumerabe fellow human beings. Whether directly or indirectly, countless others are involved in our survival---not to mention our happiness".

If we extend this line of reasoning beyond the confines of a single lifetime, we can imagne that throughout our previous lives---in fact, since time without beginnng---countless others have made inumerable contributions to our welfare. We conclude, "What grounds have I to discriminate? How can I be close to some and hostile toward others? I must rise above all feelings of partiality and discrimination , I must be of benefit to all, equally!"

How do we train our minds to perceive the essential quality of all living beings It is best to cultivate the feeling of equanimity by first focusing on relative strangers or acquaintances, those for whom you have no strong feeling one way or the other. From there you should meditate impartially, moving on to friends and then enemies. Upon achieving an impartial attitude toward all conscious beings, the Dalai Lama encourages us "to meditate on love, the wish that they find the happiness they seek". What a concept, to actually want someone else to achieve happiness before you do. Another equally challenging task for the selfish, only child, narssistic author of this prose. A huge awakening, but the seed has been planted in me.

And what I have learned is that the seed of compassion will grow as the Dalai Lama says; "If you plant it in fertile soil, a consciousness moistened with love." "When you have watered your mind with love, you can begin to meditate upon compassion. Compassion, here is simply the wish that all conscious beings be free of suffering."

Buddha says; "Not to be helpful to others, not to give to those in need, this is the fruit of samsara. better than this is to renounce the idea of self".

Tuesday, October 11, 2005



Speakers To Discuss Community Development, Food, Health, Media, Renewable Energy

(CSRwire) BOSTON, Mass. – Panel discussions on "Preserving and Restoring the Commons," presentations by the founder of the country’s leading brand of natural household products and the son of baseball great Jackie Robinson, and a venture fair are among the features of the Investors’ Circle (IC) 2005 National Conference, which will take place Nov. 1-3, 2005 at the Hyatt Regency Boston.

The conference, which will be based on the theme, "Patient Capital for a Sustainable Future," celebrates the investment of $100 million through the IC network. In collaboration with the popular PBS radio show eTown. Speakers at workshops on Nov. 3 will also discuss the state of double-bottom-line investing and enterprise creation in the context of community development, food and organics, health, media, mission-related investing and renewable energy.

Keynote speakers will include Jeffrey Hollender, CEO of Seventh Generation of Burlington, Vt., and David Robinson, Director Of Marketing for the Mshikamano Farmers Group in Tanzania. In addition to founding his successful household products company, Hollender is the founder of Network for Learning, an adult education program and audio publishing company, and author of How to Make the World a Better Place: A Guide for Doing Good.

Robinson, son of Jackie Robinson, formed United Harlem Growth Inc., a self-help housing development and renovation company, then moved to Tanzania in the 1980s and started a 29,000-tree coffee farm. He helped form the Mshikamano Farmers Group, a cooperative of coffee farmers and serves as its Director Of Marketing.

Some of the other scheduled speakers include Peter Barnes of the Tomales Bay Institute and Founder of Working Assets; Joan Bavaria, President of Trillium Asset Management; Connie Best, Managing Director, The Pacific Forest Trust; Mark Donohue of Expansion Capital Partners; Barbara Kibbe, Vice President for Program Effectiveness at The Skoll Foundation; David Kirkpatrick, Founding and Managing Director of SJF Ventures; David Robinson, founder of Sweet Unity Farms; Don Shaffer, National Coordinator of the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies; Paul Shoemaker, Executive Director of Social Venture Partners International, and Greg Steltenpohl, founder of the Interra Project and co-founder and former CEO of Odwalla.

Thirty-four companies will be featured in a venture fair on Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2005, and two panels on Thursday, Nov. 3, 2005 will discuss the use of private capital and networks to enhance bioregional, cultural and economic health and diversity. The Investors’ Circle National Conference and Venture Fair is the premier meeting place for angel investors, professional venture capitalists, philanthropic investors and entrepreneurs who are using private capital to promote the transition to a sustainable future.

This year’s conference is supported with contributions from Health Care Without Harm, the Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust, the Phoebe Haas Charitable Trust, the Skoll Foundation and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Investors’ Circle of Brookline, Mass. and San Francisco, Calif. is a leading social venture capital intermediary whose mission is to support early-stage, private companies that drive the transition to a sustainable economy. Founded in 1992, IC has become one of the nation’s largest investor networks, and the only one devoted specifically to sustainability. Its members and active affiliates are high net worth individuals, professional venture capitalists, family offices and foundations. In its first decade, network members invested over $100 million into 160 early stage private companies and venture funds working to deliver commercial solutions to social and environmental problems.

Buddha says; "If a man do something good, let him do it again and again. Let him find joy in his good work. Joyful is the accumulation of good work"

Friday, October 07, 2005


As you all know this blog has been filtering through the news of the day to see how it reflects on the teachings of not only Budhha but how we can live our lives better and on purpose.

Corporate America has been riddled with criminal CEO's wreaking havoc with the stabliity of an entire nation. Now we are are faced with an individual that defies logic. There are those who have been both appauled and bewildered by the behaviour of a man who holds the most powerful office in America. In this latest revelation of George W., we find God being used in the most affrontive way I can imagine. To justify a war and the loss of even one life in the name of God is repulsive. When the President justifies his actions he tells us that the terrorists use the name of Allah to justify their killings. Unless there is something missing in the the Muslim, Allah is God.

As you know we have had many articles re-printed under the title "White Collar Corporate Criminals". Well, this past month in Washington, they have given new meaning to the term "Political Criminals", and just as we have witnessed the trials of Ebbers, Fastow, and Stewart, perhaps it is time to bring the "Elected Criminals" of our society to justice; Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, and of course DeLay & Frist . However Buddha says we must show compassion to all beings. And so I offer you this....what would Buddha say about George?

God told me to invade Iraq: 'George, go and fight'

Agence France-Presse
October 7, 2005

LONDON - Palestinian leaders appearing in a BBC documentary say George W. Bush told them he had been instructed by God to invade Iraq and Afghanistan, according to details of the program released yesterday.

The U.S. President made the statement when he met Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and then-foreign minister Nabil Shaath in June, 2003, the ministers say in the documentary Elusive Peace: Israel and the Arabs, to be broadcast in Britain this month.

Mr. Bush also told them he had been ordered by God to create a Palestinian state, the ministers said. "President Bush said to all of us: 'I'm driven with a mission from God,' " Mr. Shaath, now the Palestinian Information Minister, says in the program.

Mr. Shaath goes on to quote the President as saying: "God would tell me, 'George, go and fight those terrorists in Afghanistan.'

"And I did, and then God would tell me, 'George, go and end the tyranny in Iraq.' And I did.

"And now, again, I feel God's words coming to me, 'Go get the Palestinians their state and get the Israelis their security, and get peace in the Middle East.'

"And by God I'm gonna do it," Mr. Shaath quotes Mr. Bush as saying.

Mr. Abbas, who was also at the meeting in the Egyptian resort of Sharm al-Sheik, recalled how the President told him: "I have a moral and religious obligation. So I will get you a Palestinian state."

A BBC spokesman said the content of the program had been put to the White House but it had refused to comment on a private conversation.

Yesterday, however, White House spokesman Scott McClellan denied Mr. Bush ever made such statements, calling claims that he had done so "absurd."

The three-part series charts the attempts to bring peace to the Middle East, from former U.S. president Bill Clinton's peace talks in 1999-2000 to Israel's withdrawal from the Gaza Strip.
The program speaks to presidents and prime ministers, and their generals and ministers, about what happened behind closed doors as the peace talks failed and the intifada grew.
The series is due to be screened in Britain on Oct. 10, 17 and 24.

Buddha says; "A man is not a great man because he is a warrior and kills other men; but because he hurts not any living being, he in truth is called great man"


Master of Deception

Police veteran Dennis Marlock has written the book (several of them, actually) on scams, cons, frauds -- all shapes and sizes of street-level deception. Which makes him an expert witness to what's gone wrong in the executive suites of corporate America. Does everyone lie? Aren't we too smart to get conned? Some honest talk about dishonest business.

From Fast Company:

Issue 66 January 2003 Page 106 By: Linda Tischler

You'll never mistake him for the untouchable Eliot Ness or even for crusading New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer. But Dennis Marlock is a pioneering crime fighter, passionate about righting wrongs in his specialized field. A 31-year veteran of the Milwaukee Police Department, Marlock has seen -- and busted -- nearly every sort of street-level scam the criminal mind can devise: the pigeon drop, three-card monte, bank-examiner fraud. More than 15 years ago, impressed by the skills of the con artists whom he was trying to arrest and frustrated by how his fellow officers kept getting outsmarted, he founded Professionals Against Confidence Crimes. He remains the group's chairman.

And he has written the book on deception -- literally. In License to Steal (Paladin Press, 1994) and, most recently, in How to Become a Professional Con Artist (Paladin Press, 2001), Marlock takes his readers into the nimble minds and cold hearts of the criminals that he has encountered. Our challenge to this master of deception: Lead us through the nimble minds and cold hearts of executives who cook the books by misallocating billions of dollars' worth of expenses, analysts who "pump and dump" stocks, and CEOs who spend lavishly on their own behalf and then portray themselves as champions of the shareholder.

Fast Company traveled to Milwaukee for some much-needed honest talk about dishonest business, and here's what he had to say:

Many of our readers are asking themselves, "Why was I stupid enough to invest in Enron or Tyco?" Well, why were they?

"The biggest misconception about fraud is that the victims are stupid. The truth is, con artists prefer intelligent people. First, smart people are more likely to have money. Second, smart people are easier to fool precisely because they think they're too smart to get scammed. We deal with victims who are doctors, lawyers, judges -- even cops. The easiest people to deceive are those who think that they are immune to deception."

But what about the cliché, "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is"?

"Actually, if it sounds too good to be true, you're probably dealing with an amateur con artist. At the heart of any good con -- whether it's bank-examiner fraud or some scheme on Wall Street -- is plausibility. The fact that there are plenty of scams that you would never fall victim to doesn't mean that they're bad scams. It just means that they weren't designed for you. Good con artists invest a lot of time figuring out which kinds of people are most vulnerable to which kinds of scams."

What's the mark of a great con man?

"He's arrogant. He's cocky. He's brazen. And he loves his work. I remember when one guy who I'd been after for a long time finally got convicted. He got six years in jail, and I was there for the verdict. As they were leading him out in handcuffs, he said to me, "Nice game! You win." Earlier, he had told me that if he got convicted, he'd be back on the street the day he got out. "The money's too good," he said. "Plus, it's what I enjoy doing."

So is it too easy to compare Andrew Fastow from Enron or Dennis Kozlowski from Tyco with that sort of character?

"A lot of the people I deal with are every bit as clever as those executives. But there is a big difference. Executives have a built-in excuse: "I'm doing what everyone else is doing." Maybe they were the unlucky ones who got caught; maybe they feel as if the government changed the rules on them. Few white-collar criminals hold themselves personally accountable. Street-level con artists know that what they're doing is a crime.

When you put it that way, the street-level huckster almost sounds more honorable than the executive.

"I wouldn't say that. A lot of the con artists I've arrested are unbelievably charming. I've wanted to hug a few of them myself! But once the game is over, and they know it's over, you see who they really are, and it's not pretty. They're vicious, they're vindictive, they're hateful. Fraud investigators get incensed with how Hollywood portrays these people. If you're a serial killer, you're Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs with a mask on your face. If you're a swindler, you're Paul Newman or Robert Redford in The Sting."

By the way, "con man" is a funny term. Where did it come from?

" It's more than 150 years old. On July 8, 1849, the New York Herald reported the arrest of a swindler named William Thompson who would approach his mark by saying, "Sir, do I have your confidence?" Then he'd perpetrate his scam. The newspaper headlined the story "The Arrest of the Confidence Man." That's still the key element of these kinds of crimes: gaining your confidence, even if it's just for a moment.

"That word "moment" is key. One of the biggest giveaways that you might be part of a con is a sense of immediacy: You have to make this decision now. If a stock is a good deal today, it will be a good deal tomorrow. When you're dealing with any scheme that involves money, you should ask yourself two questions: Is it possible that this person could be lying to me? And if they are, what do I stand to lose? If the answers are "yes" and "a lot," take some time to investigate further. "

"Con artists are great at spotting our vulnerabilities. What's their biggest vulnerability? What kills them is that they can't tell other people how smart and slick they are. Eventually, they have to talk about it. Interrogation is my specialty. I get more confessions from con artists than from any other kind of criminal. It drives defense attorneys nuts! They can't understand why these people confess and then ask for a lawyer. But if con artists believe they have a sympathetic ear, someone who understands them, then they love telling you their story. They want to compare notes with you. They want to gloat. You know the old saying, "You can't con a con"? Well, I have proven that wrong countless times. "

Linda Tischler ( is a Fast Company senior writer. Contact Dennis Marlock by email (

Buddha says; "If a fool can see his own folly, he in this at least is wise; but the fool who thinks he is wise, he indeed is the real fool"

Thursday, October 06, 2005


The Battle for the Soul of Capitalism (Hardcover)by John C. Bogle

Book Description
A financial expert explains what’s wrong in corporate, investment, and mutual fund America, the reasons behind the problems, and what should be done about it.

About the Author
JOHN C. BOGLE is founder and former CEO of the Vanguard mutual funds. In 2004, Time magazine named him one of the most influential people in the world. In 1999, Fortune magazine named him one of the four investment giants of the twentieth century.

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Despite its inflated title, this volume is a worthy jeremiad against corporate excess, especially the kind hastened by the mutual fund industry that Bogle, former CEO of low-cost Vanguard, knows well. Among the problems: inflated executive compensation and creative accounting that allows companies to claim profits even when they're in the red. Mutual fund companies, Bogle charges, care more about short-term results than long-term value, and many of them gain profits for larger parent corporations by charging investors unnecessary fees that undermine the funds' net returns.

To remedy such problems, Bogle writes, mutual fund owners and their fiduciaries must exercise the corporate responsibility they now shirk, and fund boards must be reshaped to serve the interests of shareholders. He advances in all seriousness Warren Buffett's once-joking idea for a high tax on short-term trading gains and calls for a federal commission to examine the way pension funds are managed, as well as the state of our retirement systems in general. While other recent books, such as David Swensen's Unconventional Success: A Fundamental Approach to Personal Investment, marry similar criticisms with more advice for individual investors, Bogle—a rock-ribbed Republican businessman—still deserves attention in the precincts of power. (Oct.) Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005


We have spoken a great deal about compassion and equanimity and what it means to cultivate these qualities in our everyday lives. When we have developed our sense of compassion to the point where we feel responsible for all beings we are motivated to perfect our ability to serve them. Buddhists call the aspiration to attain such a state bodhicitta, and one who has achieved it, a bodhisattva.

There are two methods for bringing about this attitude. In his book. "An Open Heart", the Dalai Lama describes them: "One, called the Sevenfold Cause-and-Effect Method, hinges on viewing all beings as having been our mother in the past. In the other, Exchanging Self for Others, we view all others as we do our ourselves. Both methods are considered practices of the method, or path."

For many of us who are just beginning on the path, the message unflolding here is new territory. It may require some of us to alter our belief and thinking 90 degrees, but in so doing we are opening ourselves to a greater opportunity. An opportunity to view life with a panorama lense rather than a finely tuned microscope. Our world is being tested as never before and along with it; our values and traditional beliefs about everything. Massive change is immenent and it will lead us in a direction that will guide not only our children but our children's children to a kinder, more peaceful and compassionate world. So let's begin our journey to achieving Buddhahood and let's not forget that patience is required, for as we have been told, it may take this lifetime and perhaps several more to achieve the noble state of Buddhahood.


"If we have been reborn time after time, it is evident that we have needed many mothers to give birth to us. It should be mentioned that our births have not been limited to the planet Earth. According to the Buddhist view, we have been going through the cycle of life and death for far longer than our planet has existed. Our past lives are therefore infinite, as are the beings who have given birth to us. Thus the first cause bringing about bodhicitta is the recognition that all beings have been our mother."

"The love and kindness shown us by our mother in this life would be difficult to repay. She endured many sleepless nights to care for us when we were helpless infants. She fed us and would have willingly sacrificed everything, including her own life to spare ours. As we contemplate her example of devoted love, we should consider that each and every being throughout existence has treated us this way. Each dog, cat, fish, fly, and human being has at some point in the benningless past been our mother and shown us overwhelming love and kindness. Such a thought should bring about our appreciation. This is the second cause of bodhicitta".

"As we envision the present condition of all these beings, we begin to develop the desire to help them change their lot. This is the third cause, and out of it comes the fourth, a feeling of love cherishing all beings. This is an attraction towards all beings, similar to what a child feels upon seeing his or her mother. This leads us to compassion, which is the fifth cause of bodhicitta. "

"Compassion is a wish to separate these suffering beings, our mothers of the past, from their miserable situation. At this point we also experience loving-kindness, a wish that all beings find happiness. As we progress through these stages of responsibility, we go from wishing that all sentient (conscious) beings find happiness and freedom from suffering to personally assuming responsiblity for helping them enter this state beyond misery. This is the final cause. As we scrutinize how best to help others, we are drawn to achieve the fully enlightened and omniscient state of Buddhahood."

Buddha says; "A man is not a great man because he is a warrior and kills other men; but because he hurts not any living being, he in truth is called great man".