Magazine July 1, 2021, Issue

Chief Executive Activist

(Martin Barraud/Getty Images)
CEOs are abandoning their duties to shareholders and companies

One of the last Gilbert and Sullivan comedic operas staged in London, Utopia Limited, satirized various aspects of Victorian life. Its chief target was the increasing domination of the joint-stock limited-liability company as a form of economic and social organization. This modern form of the company, which helped to unleash capitalism’s prodigious wealth-creation potential, was thought to be so successful that it might be imitated everywhere. Indeed, some even envisioned it replacing antiquated forms of political and social organization, such as government and the family. Consider a brief excerpt:

Zara: But perhaps the most beneficent change of all . . .

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John Hillen, a former assistant secretary of state, is the James C. Wheat Professor in Leadership at Hampden-Sydney College’s Wilson Center for Leadership in the Public Interest, and a member of the NR, Inc. Board of Directors.

In This Issue

What Is Woke Capitalism?

What Can Be Done?

Books, Arts & Manners


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Instead of leading the scientific consensus, Anthony Fauci merely stands in front of it, even as it contradicts itself.


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