Makerspace Development versus Shareholder Activism

According to Wikipedia, the invisible hand is a metaphor used by Adam Smith to describe the unintended social benefits resulting from individual actions. Today that invisible hand is controlled by the self-interests of shareholder activists. These corporate raiders care very little about lesser industrialized communities in America. As you can imagine, the only counter weight is local community activism in the form of makerspace development.

There are a lot of macro-economic trends that may prove challenging for transnational corporations. The most dangerous of which is the specter of deflation. However, you can think of the micro-economic threat posed by shareholder activists as the most immediate threat to the recovery from the Great Recession. The reason is that shareholder activists will influence how the trillions of dollars sitting on sidelines are spent.

Shareholder activists don’t have a mandate to act in the common good. That is the privy of governments and non-governmental organizations.  They are the champions of profiteering. Shareholder activists pursue their goal of unlocking every bit of value available in the companies that they have set their sights on. In fact, they are so focused on this goal that it doesn’t even matter if the target company exists when they are done.

These so-called activists won’t allow companies to waste money on innovation, employee training, or anything else that advances the competitiveness of the business. So it is inconceivable that shareholder activists will allow executives do what’s right for lesser industrialized communities. Furthermore, they use the hatred of big business to ply their trade with impunity. This is what the face of 21st century profiteering looks like.

For lesser industrialized communities, the only counter to this rampant exercise of self-interest is makerspace development. It empowers a larger creative class. Makerspace Development shifts the balance of power from low-wage employers to high-impact creatives. When you pull ninety percent of the cost out of a process, you don’t need shareholder activists.

Zachary Alexander