The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one… In this case — me.

Who will be in attendance when “Conscious Capitalism 2017” opens April 18 at the Sheraton Philadelphia?

“Conscious Capitalism is a movement driven by heroic business leaders and entrepreneurs. Their stories of elevating humanity through business is what inspires others to practice capitalism more consciously. By practicing Conscious Capitalism, we can change the world in positive ways beyond our imaginations,”

CCThe organization’s website offers a history from the use of term “socially conscious capitalist enterprise,” in an Atlantic Monthly article; through the formation of the organization, to the present.

Naturally, there’s no mention in its very concise history of my favorite book on the subject of responsible business practices, “Ben & Jerry’s Double Dip,” by Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield.ben-jerrys-double-dipPBsml

Though sale of the Vermont-based company to Unilever was completed 2000, barely three years after publication, the history of this historic ice cream enterprise is worth a read. The book is easy to find online for just a few dollars from resellers or $19.99 from the publisher.

Conversely, a ticket to the conference (including an event fee, food and beverage) is just over $2,000 for the 48 hour event. This seems to set the bar at a somewhat elitist mark for the “CEOs and their leadership teams, executives and entrepreneurs, the consultants and coaches who serve and support them, and anyone else interested in learning more about Conscious Capitalism.”

I’d like to attend this event. I’d like to take in the keynotes, check out the practicums, network with like-minded individuals – but not for $1,000 a day! Lest I forget to add travel and lodging (ok, I could probably contact a local friend to ‘visit,’ but seriously…)

Perhaps if this were grassroots types meeting in a church or VFW hall, it would attract not just the well-heeled established conscious capitalists, but the aspiring conscious capitalist entrepreneurs. Would the impact be as great? Who knows, perhaps greater. What will come out of this event? How will the success be measured?

I’m reminded of some off-the-grid farmers I interviewed and wrote about years ago. Their energy story has stayed with me, though the published piece was about their farm

They installed a self-contained solar power system on their farm before New York State got involved in subsidies for such things. The cost? About half of what it cost a year later – after the state began blessing installers and offering rebates.

I certainly respect the goals of Conscious Capitalism, Inc. and wish conference attendees well. But regrettably, the gathering simply isn’t the budget this year. Even if it was – this reeks of fundraiser, and I object on principle.

Perhaps I’ll take the days to simply re-read “Double Dip” for inspiration. I’m due.

Perhaps I’ll read a little Jeremy Bentham, while I’m at it.

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