Is social enterprise a palliative?

In the following interview with the late Pamela Hartigan,  we may hear her question the effectiveness of social enterprise which requires it to be beholding to a sponsor.

Twice she uses the term palliative to describe how disruptors are rendered accountable to their contracter and risk being coopted:  

As most will know , the Skoll Centre at Oxford which Pamela headed, is sponsored by billionaire Jeff Skoll, co-founder of Ebay 

More than a decade ago, it was a Black Women’s group leader, Ruthie Gilmore of Incite! who drew our attention to the nonprofit industrial complex and how neoliberalims drives it. They had been unable to find a way to seed  and propagate change that was autonomous. Hence – “The Revolution Will Not Be Funded”

“Noeliberalism is not new nice guys, it’s new mean guys”

it was on the Skoll Social Edge forum a decade ago, that advocates and practitioners for autonomous social innovation shared views on Profit for a Purpose

it came at a time when we’d completed our proposal for a ‘Marshall Plan’ for Ukraine, which included this quote from General George Marshall in 1947

“Our policy is directed not against any country or doctrine but against hunger, poverty, desperation and chaos. Its purpose should be the revival of a working economy in the world so as to permit the emergence of political and social conditions in which free institutions can exist. Such assistance, I am convinced, must not be on a piecemeal basis as various crises develop. Any assistance that this Government may render in the future should provide a cure rather than a mere palliative. Any government that is willing to assist in the task of recovery will find full co-operation I am sure, on the part of the United States Government. Any government which maneuvers to block the recovery of other countries cannot expect help from us. Furthermore, governments, political parties, or groups which seek to perpetuate human misery in order to profit therefrom politically or otherwise will encounter the opposition of the United States.”

As our late founder would point out in this paper. simply resolving the most urgent problems was not a permanent solution. we needed to think about how capitalism could be redirected for permanent change.

Rather than becoming a McKinsey consultant, I simply shared what we’d bewen doing for their Long Term Capitalism initiative, where Re-imaginging Capitalism – The New Bottom Line became one of the most popular contributions:

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