howard schultz

Is business man to president going to become a thing?

Howard Schultz, executive chairman of Starbucks, is stepping down and hinting at a 'public service' career move

The executive chairman of Starbucks, Howard Schultz, is stepping down... and hinting about pursuing a new role in 'public service'.

What it means: We're spotting a pattern here. First Robert Iger, chief exec of Disney, said he'd consider running for office, then Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan Chase, now this guy – seems like Trump has made the businessman --> president life goal a thing.

When Trump was running for president, a lot of people came out and said they weren't sure his career was quite the right prep for presidency: scaling businesses for profit isn't necessarily the same skillset as overseeing how all the companies, banks, and resources in the economy work together.

But others said being a businessman teaches you to be efficient and goal-oriented, surely good things when it comes to managing economic policy. In Schultz's case, he's been hailed a 'social impact entrepreneur', investing part of Starbucks' profits into projects tackling poverty and inequality around the world in a way that wasn't common for businesses to do back when it all began in the 1980s.

At the same time, Starbucks has come under serious fire for not paying enough tax, particularly in the UK – they've not broken laws, but they've done their best to 'minimise contributions' through some clever legal maneouvres (that's the difference between 'tax avoidance', which is legal, and 'tax evasion', which isn't.)

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  • RW

    Your right to a degree. You mentioned “the wandering Jew”.

    I elaborate that the Jewish people, historically have tended to migrate almost exclusively to locations that are economically and culturally vibrant already. I would speculate that Jews have thrived in these places and have often improved the bounds of their economies and knowledge base.

    You can also ask; how many massive entertainment conglomerates, Nobel winners or billionaires has Isreal developed? If Jews are so capable, why isn’t Tel Aviv the Rome of our time?

    Jews are successful because they value education, maintain a strong social cohesive, they actively monitor and have a good sense for Zeitgeist wherever they are and they carefully choose the places they settle and congregate themselves heavily in these choice locations.

    But most importantly (haulocaust increased the importance of this aspect), they actually designed their culture for success. They not only attend Harvard, they use what they learned to better the group as a whole. With as much, they studied intricate networking systems, adapted to it and in many cases improved upon them. (See how Japan acquired Aegis warships and made them better).

    Of course there is nothing wrong with any of this. It’s when you elaborately gain disproportionate power in any society where you would stand out, you must take care when attempting to make a society better (Civil Rights movement) and rewriting that society all together (mass immigration). Ask blacks in China, Mexico, Philippines or India how much opportunity they have? Go to businesses owned by their American diaspora and see how many blacks they hire. Go to Silicon Valley and see how many East or South Asian tech workers wish they could work with more black people. California might work as a state, but as a nation, I think your rolling the nuclear dice here. I hope we can succeed as a tolerant pluralistic superpower but at this stage in human societal development, it’s a pipe dream.

    And if Jews really are the icon for success, they would see that fundamental human successes happen over generations. Just look at the rest of the planet? Are we ready?