Goldstein: How MLB became a microcosm of capitalism’s failure

From Craig Goldstein at SB Nation on April 22, 2020:

“It’s just business.” You hear it whenever some marginalized community loses a necessary service, or when a sick person is denied sorely needed coverage for their health, or when a laborer’s basic humanity is impugned, all in the name of the almighty dollar.

It’s a phrase spring-loaded with the connotation that “businesses” are in the business of doing anything and everything to make money, and that their mere existence justifies the collateral damage they cause. On some level, it’s difficult to blame people if they default to “it’s just business” when they encounter a wrong being done by a company that manufactures their steel cut oats or designer toothbrushes — if only because, hell, we all need to get on with our day.

We’ve been told “it’s just business” so often in our lives that we accept it as easily as air. It has become a state of existence, perpetuated by economic titans such as Milton Friedman, who declared “there is one and only one social responsibility of business: to use its resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits so long as it stays within the rules of the game.”

Plenty of people disagree with this worldview, but there’s no denying the rules of the game are ill-defined, malleable, unenforced and yet somehow ubiquitous. What they are not is equitable or ethical.

Read the full article here:

Originally published: April 23, 2020. Last Updated: April 23, 2020.