Tutor profile: Sam W.
Subject: Political Science
Is the US Congress an effective body compared to the Chinese Communist Party?
The US Congress and the Chinese Communist Party each have different appeals. From an electoral and accountability standpoint, I believe that the US Congress is better because people are able to vote in new politicians during new elections. Almost all Congressional seats are held by either Republicans or Democrats. But in China, all politicians are members of the Chinese Communist Party. These members are selected in private by officials that are already inside the government. As a result, the members are not democratically elected, and technically not accountable to its citizenry. However, China's rapid economic growth and expansion could arguably be attributed to its centralized power structure. In addition, the majority of the CCP government members have engineering backgrounds, compared to the US which has politicians with law backgrounds. Ultimately the two bodies are difficult to compare because they operate under different forms of government (capitalist democacy vs single party rule, with some market capitalism), and each have their pros and cons.
Should the primary goal of a college education be to gain a well-rounded liberal arts education? Or should it set students on a pre-professional track?
The primary goal of a college education depends on the student and his needs. I believe that schools should offer the opportunity for both. At my alma mater, Emory University, I was able to spend two years in the College of Arts & Sciences before entering the business school. I was also able to still take courses in the College while at the business school. I found that this was an excellent setup because I was able to meet a wide variety of people with different interests. I would not be able to feel like a well-rounded student had I only taken business courses. I believe colleges should offer both options and let students mix and match from each of the tracks.
Was Milton Friedman correct in saying that the sole responsibility of a business is to increase its profits?
To say that the sole responsibility of a corporation is to increase its profits is misguided at best, and irresponsible at worst. Corporations are powerful engines of economic growth, but, with great power comes great responsibility. If managers of corporations focus only on profit maximization, they will likely make others worse off. Rather than take a shareholder primacy view of the corporation as Milton Friedman did, a new paradigm should take hold - stakeholder primacy. The stakeholder model accounts not just for the shareholders of the corporation, but also internal stakeholders -- owners and employees -- and external stakeholders -- customers, suppliers, investors, creditors, media, communities, trade unions, and government agencies. This orientation towards balancing many different interests and not just those of the shareholders will result in an increase in brand equity, and a long-term reputation boost. As companies continue to take the initiative in this regard, customers will be more likely to do business with them, not less.