The steering wheel and the guardrails

Your car may have a powerful engine, but if the steering wheel is out of whack, it’s probably a mistake to simply drive faster. And putting in premium gas and removing the muffler doesn’t help much either.

And if you’re driving on a crowded road, it makes no sense to hit the gas and tell anyone who gets hit to be more careful.

We don’t have to wait for a wreck, a smashed engine, to put our tools to better use.

Capitalism is an extraordinary engine. It has remade every corner of the Earth, and done it in the course of two or three lifetimes. Together with its cousins, technology and industrialism, capitalism is an evolving system that changes whatever it touches.

But the purpose of our society isn’t to optimize capitalism. The purpose of capitalism is to allow our society to become better. A culture that opens doors for and nurtures the people we care about.

The issues of our time are education, corruption, access, infrastructure, civility and the downstream effects of the work we do.

Investing in guardrails and fixing the steering doesn’t deny the power of capitalism. It puts it to better use.

 

[An aside: Kevin Kelly points us to GeoGuessr, which is a superfun Google Maps game, one that I spent two hours on yesterday–it would be great if every sixth grader got good at it. One thing I noticed is how much most of the world looks alike now–one of the plus/minus side effects of the paving/cultural spread/commercial shift of the last fifty years.]
Seth Godin

Seth Godin

Hi. I’m Seth Godin. I’m a teacher, and I do projects.

For more than thirty years, I’ve been trying to turn on lights, inspire people and teach them how to level up. This blog has been appearing daily for more than a decade. One day, if we meet, I hope you’ll share with me your favorite posts. Even better, I’d like to hear about how a book or course helped you interact with the world differently and make a difference.
Seth Godin

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