“Corporations don’t have values; they have an image…Their main objective is to make money.” —Merry Mahaffey

It’s not uncommon for corporations to espouse “corporate values.” We’ve all heard this phrase before. But it should be obvious to anyone that these “values” are little more than meaningless slogans or tag-lines; they’re not meant to be taken seriously. The problem is that corporate/business goals—which are most always viewed and communicated in financial terms—bear no resemblance to to these cherished corporate values, i.e. when it comes down to it, money talks. In fact, more often than not, these “values” tend to be in direct conflict with said business goals (e.g. a goal of short-term profit for shareholders does NOT jibe well with a corporate value that wants to say that people/workers are the companies greatest asset, etc.). Essentially, business leaders tend to adopt these “corporate values” as a way to coerce and manipulate people.

And that’s really all there is to it.

That being said, this is what really worries me about Trump’s narrow-sighted, business based, guttural “deal making” approach to governing: as evidenced so far, there are no values rooted in philosophical/religious convictions, morality or ethics underlying Trump’s decisions, only short-term, poorly defined/poorly thought-out financial and ostentatious goals. At least neo-liberals, while still being minimalists in the value department, still value the Lockean trio of life, liberty and property. But based on his vindictive, contemptuous actions and remarks throughout his campaign, the wall street people and corporate execs he’s nominating for his cabinet, and how his foreign policy is already shaping up (e.g. using Taiwan as a “bargain chip” against China), it’s completely obvious that Trump’s main currency (i.e. what he values) is coercive, dominating power; which, by the way, best supports his chosen brand image as some sort of tough-guy, deal-making savior who will stand-up for Trump-Merica Corporation®.

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