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【Great Collaboration】 Chap. 4, Sec. (16)


(16) From calculation of self-interest to the sense of right and wrong

In addition, the sense of right and wrong explicitly presents itself in LOHAS.

The sense of right and wrong is not explicitly taken up in contemporary economics, which assumes that people always act on self-interest and the calculation of gains and losses. Contemporary economics preaches that it is a good thing for an individual to always maximize, within budgetary limitations, his/her so-called utility, or his/her desire that is presumed to be clearly quantifiable. As such, it is a far cry from “knowing contentment”. Also, contemporary economics implies that business enterprises are simply warehouse-like places, wherein various resources are brought together and laid out; therein squat infinitely greedy business managers, who care only about their own profits and losses. It states that competitiveness consists in the capacity to boldly slash or augment plant equipment or manpower, with the minimum amount of cost and time expended.

But can that be true? Conversely, didn’t the spread of such economics, which ignores the sense of right and wrong and cares only about calculation of self-interest, force 20th-century society into collapse? Why does only destruction run rampant in society, in the name of reform? The answer might be that we tried to judge everything in this world solely by calculation of self-interest, rejecting what slight sense of right and wrong remained.

In LOHAS and the Great Collaboration society that extends therefrom, the sense of right and wrong, not calculation of self-interest, becomes the foremost constraint on people’s economic activities. Moreover, in the Great Collaboration society, social stability, together with a network [of individuals] with long-term relationships, becomes the basic structure of the world. This means that gains and losses cannot be judged by a single transaction alone at this point in time, but rather should be calculated on the basis of past, present, and future throughout. Accordingly, I presume gains and losses in the Great Collaboration society would ultimately end up to be the exchange of costs that enables mutual survival and coexistence.

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(Date published / 公開日: 5/4/2021)

(Date last updated / 最終改訂日: 5/4/2021)