A bit off-message, but I’m outraged…

…at a column written by Stefan Stern, a columnist for the Financial Times.  While readers of this blog expect career and job search wisdom, I feel compelled to "out" this columnist.  I hope to feed his "hot air" to my readers who are proponents of sustainable enterprise* and corporate social responsibility*.

Stern's flippant muse was caught by a LinkedIn Net Impact Group member, Joseph Hollak.  Joseph quoted Stern's opening comment, "Thank goodness, now the recession’s here we can forget all that
nonsense about corporate social responsibility (CSR) and get back to
trying to make some money."
  When last I checked, the question had not taken on much of a life, so I raise it here to raise a ruckus…

My two-cents is simple: CSR is not a conspiracy to pick the pocket of shareholders in the name of "good deeds."  CSR is an approach to profitability that promotes free enterprise while at the same time, promoting respect for the planet and dignity for consumers.  Profitability and higher principles can certainly work hand in glove.  Surely Mr. Stern has witnessed what happens to those who blindly seek profits at the expense of their community.  When he emerges from his rock, I hope he'll settle in a pleasant green pasture.

*A note to students of sustainability and CSR – the Wikipedia definitions need your input.