I’ve been having schadenfreudisch fun watching various accounts of Budweiser’s idiocy. Most people are focusing on the specific politics, but the problem is simpler.

QE made it possible to ignore the BASIC RULES OF BUSINESS.

Know your customers. Keep your customers. Know your workers. Keep your workers.

In the era of profit, successful businesses followed these rules rigorously. They’re not mysterious. QE and endless cash from NYC/SF shareholders REQUIRED businesses to reject customers and workers. Shareholders HATE customers and products and profits, and Share Value was the sole driving force.

As always, I was comparing with Nash, the ultimate success story of KYC/KYW. Three brilliant executives in a row understood Nash’s uncool niche and uncool customers, and kept the customers happy. They never made the mistake of whoring after COOL customers to please shareholders. Charles Nash, George Mason, and George Romney maintained the rules, and added another rule which makes the rest possible. Don’t borrow. Save your money, save your skills, save your tooling, amortize, amortize, amortize. It all works together. Amortizing the skills and tooling enables you to amortize the customers.

I was going to write: All three men had the contradictory combination of frugality and foresight.

But wait. Frugality and foresight are SYNONYMS. People who foresee the future MUST be frugal. Frugality is the path to survival. Preserve your money, preserve your skills, preserve your tools, preserve your workers, preserve your customers.

We’ve gone so far down the evil road of Innovative Disruption, viewing frugality as a sin and amortization as a fallacy, that we’ve forgotten this basic connection.

See also: Creativity requires stability.

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