Sunday Morning Quotation – Pinker on How the Commercial Spirit Helps Beat Racism

In this piece on Celtics legend Red Auerbach, Steven Pinker makes a great point about markets that is too rarely noted (outside the Chicago School that is):

“Auerbach’s color-blindness surely came in part from principle and integrity, but it just as surely derived from one of the great virtues of the commercial spirit. Racism, because it favors color over talent, is bad for business.”

Marc Eisner made a related point here at Pileus about how capitalism is a “uniter, not a divider” during a recent trip to Jerusalem.

Other parts of Pinker’s piece on Auerbach that discuss Jews and capitalism may be more controversial.  One passage in particular reminded me of Milton Friedman’s less well-known essay “Capitalism and the Jews.”  Jerry Muller, a political theorist at Catholic University, wrote an entire book on the subject and responded to Friedman’s “paradox” claim.

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