Scott Galloway TED Talk

By Leo Gura - May 14, 2024

Overall, this is a good talk and Galloway makes good points. However, I want to point out an important oversight in his logic. At the end of the talk he asks the question, “Do we love our children?” But here’s the devil of this issue: People have always loved their children, including rich people like Scott Galloway. That’s actually what creates the problem! Why do people pursue endless wealth, as Galloway does? In many cases it’s because they are insecure about providing for their children. The problem isn’t a lack of love for your children, it’s the privileging of your children over everyone else’s children. Rich people provide too much for their children relative to everyone else. When everyone wants to favor their children over all other children, the end result is a cutthroat capitalist society where the good of the collective is eroded.

In this talk Galloway highlights a collective problem. There is an important difference between love for YOUR children vs love for all the children in the collective. And there is a tradeoff between those two. If you love your own children too much, you will try to use your wealth to give them special advantages, like getting them to the best schools, best doctors, best universities, etc. And of course this is done at the expense of other kids. This is a nuanced example of The Tragedy Of The Commons. Wealthy people are exploiting and manipulating the commons in order to gain special advantages in life BECAUSE they are in love with themselves and their own children too much. To fix the problem that Galloway highlights requires something more than loving your children, it requires making sacrifices for the collective well-being of society. Which requires someone like Scott Galloway to stop exploiting capital markets! Which he isn’t prepared to do because he still feels financially insecure and wants to provide his children.

What do I mean by “exploiting capital markets”? Scott Galloway says on his podcast that he lost $15 million in the last year shorting stocks. << THAT is the problem. He has a net worth over $100 million and 4 mansions around the country yet he’s still doing this Wall Street stuff. As long as Boomers behave this way, that’s why Gen Z is getting screwed. So the real question is: How do we change our entire business and corporate culture so that people stop behaving this way?

Does Scott Galloway love mankind enough to stop short-selling and buying his 5th mansion? How about all of his Wall Street friends? How do we get these people to stop it? That’s the real question!

I’m not interested in judging Scott Galloway, I just wanted to point out the depth of this problem and why it’s so difficult to fix. Despite his exploitation of capital markets, Galloway is still doing plenty of good in the world by talking frankly about these issues. So he deserves credit for that. I would rather Galloway give this talk than not. But at the same time, let’s not kid ourselves with love.

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