United Airline’s legendary president “Pat” Patterson had a saying which conveys the intent behind this page on the ANBHF web site. In his words, “ The freedom you lose is the freedom you abuse.” His frame of reference was the increase in government regulation of the airline industry each time some airline abused the freedom which the industry enjoyed.
The profound principle to which Patterson was alluding is that the full flowering of democratic capitalism requires the granting of broad freedom of action to the business community. But to preserve that freedom of action business must act in a socially responsible manner. Failure of one business to behave responsibly puts the freedom of the entire business community at risk. Too many failures over a prolonged period of time might even put the survival of the democratic capitalist system at risk.
Therefore, it seems appropriate and important for all who understand and appreciate the historical successes of American business to also be aware of the possibilities and dangers or irresponsible behavior. That being the case, it would seem appropriate for the ANBHF to include on its web site some sort of recognition of and warning about the danger…. Just as Patterson did during his many years of iconic leadership in the airline industry.
The ANBHF board of directors has not yet decided how to address this issue. Our current thinking is to establish a “Wall of Shame” on this web site. Said wall would name the names and identify the shames. But exactly how to do that is still a matter of deliberation. Visitors to this page on our web site who have thoughts and suggestions on this matter are invited to share them with us. Simply write, email or telephone the president of the American National Business Hall of Fame.