Unacceptable Costs and Risks
Fundamental reports relevant to today's problems and to a better future
Essential Principles of Economics
The purpose of any enterprise is to satisfy the community's needs by providing high quality goods and services at reasonable prices.
Those who can satisfy its needs are motivated by the community towards doing so by the reward, that is by the resulting profit. This process is generally referred to as 'profit motivation'.
But enterprises which may be badly managed or which offer inferior products, become uncompetitive and cease to trade in this product or service.
In this way the community attempts to ensure that its needs are satisfied at reasonable prices, that it gets good value for money.
But enterprises are not only formed by people who care for other people and who are motivated by the intensity of the need, but also by those who care only for personal gain in wealth and power over others and who are motivated by this.
So we have enterprises being formed which are generally managed by directors who are appointed by the owners. It is the directors who generally take the key decisions on behalf of the owners. At times owners may appoint themselves as directors.
In other words, directors and managers are responsible to the community for what they do, are accountable to the community for the results of their work and for the way in which such results are achieved.
In practice directors are generally required by man-made laws to act first and foremost in the interests of the owners, so that it is profit which is maximised. Short-term and long-term profits can be and are being maximised regardless of the cost to others, that is regardless of the cost to the community, limited only by the likelihood of unpleasant consequences.
We are here considering the high cost of putting profits first. What we see are the effects of speeding on in the search for profits either negligently unaware of the dangers or else without concern about likely or possible consequences (social costs) to the community.
But how can one ensure that those in important positions become aware that they are accountable to the community and how can one make them accountable to the community?
The phrase 'the polluter pays' sums up popular feeling about how to right past wrongs, about how to hold to account those whose profits are made at the expense of the community and those who benefit from antisocial activities.
In reality, it is the customer who is made to pay because enterprises recover any cleaning-up costs and compensation payments by increasing their prices.
The owners appoint directors to take decisions on behalf of the owners, with the directors in turn appointing senior managers to have the decisions carried out. Hence it would seem to be the owners and/or directors who should be held accountable, who should pay, and they should not be permitted to pass cleaning-up costs and compensation payments on to the community or to their customers.
After all, if one does not evaluate performance then how can good and outstanding performance be rewarded appropriately?
Those who took the decisions which caused the damage, or who failed to take decisions which could have prevented damage, should surely suffer the consequences. It is they who need to be exposed and punished for the decisions they took or failed to take.
The Unacceptable Risk of the LHC Operations
Dr. Angelika Schaumberg, writing to the European Union Commission about 'The unacceptable risk of the LHC operations at CERN', considers that
And she calls on the EU for a completely independent community-orientated evaluation about the spending of enormous sums on a project which seems to offer no real return to the enpoverished Europeans while posing an unacceptable risk to the survival of humanity, saying:
Manfred Davidmann is an internationally well-known and respected scientist and author of a number of books and reports which have had and are having considerable impact. His work usually breaks new ground and opens up new understanding and is written in meaningful and easily understood language. Outstanding is that his work is generally accepted as factual, objective and unbiased.
The Site Overview page has links to all individual Subject Index Pages which between them list the works by Manfred Davidmann which are available on the Internet, with short descriptions and links for downloading.
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