McLean, Virginia / November 2, 2022 – Co-founder and former CEO of Whole Foods Market, John Mackey, spoke to the students and attendees at LibertyCon International in Miami earlier this month about being an entrepreneur, learning about libertarian philosophy, and what he describes as “conscious capitalism.”
“Capitalism is the great economic engine that over the last 200 years has lifted millions of people out of economic poverty,” began Mackey on the main stage at the beginning of LibertyCon.
He talked about how reading economist Milton Friedman’s Capitalism and Freedom when he was younger, which opened him to the idea that he might be a libertarian. “I instinctively always believed in liberty, but before I learned about libertarianism, I didn’t have a philosophy” that matched those ideas.
He began talking about conscious capitalism as a way to demonstrate how businesses provide so much more to the world than simply generating profit.
The non-profit group that Mackey also sits on the board of to promote this ideology believes that “business is good because it creates value, it is ethical because it is based on voluntary exchange, it is noble because it can elevate our existence, and it is heroic because it lifts people out of poverty and creates prosperity.”
When talking with Students For Liberty CEO Dr. Wolf von Laer on the main stage at LibertyCon, Mackey explained that “Conscious Capitalism is about embracing that the value businesses can produce aren’t limited to profit” and that it is “a management strategy; you’ll optimize your business when you lead with value.”
Mackey was recently elected to the board of the Cato Institute – a public policy research organization that creates a presence for and promotes libertarian ideas in policy debates.
He currently sits on the board of directors for Students For Liberty, which you can learn more about at StudentsForLiberty.com, and John Mackey’s role in the non-profit organization.