15 years ago a 'Marshall plan' for Ukraine was in the hands of Ukraine's government . It made the case that business with a social purpose could be applied to resolve a broad range of social problems.
'Enterprise is any organizational activity aimed at a specific output or outcome. Once the output or outcome – the primary objective – is clear, an organization operating to fulfill the objective is by definition an enterprise. Business is the most prominent example of enterprise. A business plan, or organizational map, provides a reference regarding how an organizational scheme will operate to produce a specific outcome: provision of products or services in a way to create profit. Profit in turn is measured numerically in terms of monetary gains, the “bottom line.”
This is the function of classic capitalism, which has proven to be the most powerful economic engine ever devised.
An inherent assumption about capitalism is that profit is defined only in terms of monetary gain. This assumption is virtually unquestioned in most of the world. However, it is not a valid assumption. Business enterprise, capitalism, must be measured in terms of monetary profit. That rule is not arguable. A business enterprise must make monetary profit, or it will merely cease to exist. That is an absolute requirement. But it does not follow that this must necessarily be the final bottom line and the sole aim of the enterprise. How this profit is used is another question. It is commonly assumed that profit will enrich enterprise owners and investors, which in turn gives them incentive to participate financially in the enterprise to start with.
That, however, is not the only possible outcome for use of profits. Profits can be directly applied to help resolve a broad range of social problems: poverty relief, improving childcare, seeding scientific research for nationwide economic advancement, improving communications infrastructure and accessibility, for examples – the target objectives of this particular project plan. The same financial discipline required of any conventional for-profit business can be applied to projects with the primary aim of improving socioeconomic conditions. Profitability provides money needed to be self-sustaining for the purpose of achieving social and economic objectives such as benefit of a nation’s poorest, neediest people. In which case, the enterprise is a social enterprise.'
In the conclusion, the paper said:
'This is a long-term permanently sustainable program, the basis for "people-centered" economic development. Core focus is always on people and their needs, with neediest people having first priority – as contrasted with the eternal chase for financial profit and numbers where people, social benefit, and human well-being are often and routinely overlooked or ignored altogether. This is in keeping with the fundamental objectives of Marshall Plan: policy aimed at hunger, poverty, desperation and chaos. This is a bottom-up approach, starting with Ukraine's poorest and most desperate citizens, rather than a "top-down" approach that might not ever benefit them. They cannot wait, particularly children. Impedance by anyone or any group of people constitutes precisely what the original Marshall Plan was dedicated to opposing. Those who suffer most, and those in greatest need, must be helped first -- not secondarily, along the way or by the way. '
In 2006 author Terry Hallman was asked what brought him to Ukraine.
I came to Ukraine for the first time in April 2002, to work on a possible development proposal. That became the Crimea project mentioned above. I had already gotten a development project into Russia – Tomsk – in 1999. Work there came to a logical conclusion for me at the end of 2000, and I always had Ukraine in mind as my next stop. In both cases, I thought that I might be able to find ways to help our former enemy, the former USSR. The US and USSR had been enemies for so long, it just seemed time to try and be friends. President Clinton usually listened to my ideas, so I felt that if I came up with a good idea for a development project, he would help get it done. That’s how the Tomsk project came about. For me, it was all in the spirit of friendship, reaching out and trying to help former enemies if possible. There just wasn’t any sense in being enemies, particularly since ordinary citizens in the US and former USSR have much more in common, than not, as human beings. I realized that if US citizens and Russian or Ukrainian citizens actually had a chance to get to know each other, as people, there would never have been a Cold War. We, US citizens, for the most part didn’t want to hurt you. You, USSR citizens, for the most part didn’t want to hurt us. It was an insane battle of ideology between Washington and Moscow, which most of us had nothing to do with. Washington convinced US citizens that all of the USSR wanted to harm us, and Moscow did the same with USSR citizens. For the most part, it was never true. I just wanted to get past the nonsense, and really try to establish friendship in place of enmity.
In 2008 he followed up with an appeal to USAID and the Senate committee chaired by Joe Bden for support with an anti corruption network..
"There is increasing congruence and synchronicity in play now, to the point of attunement. What Ms. Fore is describing has been central to P-CED’s main message, advocacy and activity for a decade. That, and helping establish an alternative form of capitalism, where profits and/or aid money are put to use in investment vehicles with the singular purpose of helping the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people. The paper on which that is based is in Clinton’s library, dated September 16, 1996, author yours’ truly. That is reflected in P-CED’s home page and history section. In fact, you might notice a number of ideas and writings there that have now made their way into the mainstream of economics and aid thinking, how to make business and aid work smarter and more effectively in relieving poverty and the misery and risks that result. Bill Gates — as hard-edged a capitalist as has ever existed — reiterated the same things in Wall Street Journal a couple of weeks ago (ref below.) It sounds as though Ms. Fore’s remarks very much reflect this sort of thinking. Now it’s time to move forward and get it done."
In 2013 the story was published here on Mixmarket as Reimagining Capitalism. The New bottom line.
Just weeks later Unilever CEO Paul Polman wrote for Huffington Post of Where Our Moral Compass meets the bottom line:
"When people talk about new forms of capitalism, this is what I have in mind: companies that show, in all transparency, that they are contributing to society, now and for many generations to come. Not taking from it.
"It is nothing less than a new business model. One that focuses on the long term. One that sees business as part of society, not separate from it. One where companies seek to address the big social and environmental issues that threaten social stability. One where the needs of citizens and communities carry the same weight as the demands of shareholders."
As we had.
Yet the social problems remained unresolved and in 2014 violence erupted on the streets. Even Ukraine's oligarchs were concerned.:
At Davos 2014 Tony Blair chaired a panel discussion with Bill Gates, Richard Branson and Muhammad Yunus on the panel,
In February Maidan leader Nataliya Zubar appealed for support from the EU.
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,
The severe situation of Ukraine is a direct consequence of the systematic crime of the Yanukovych regime. The nation suffers from the serious violations of human rights, abuse of power by authorities and heavy corruption. On 16 January 2014, the government demonstrated obedience to the regime and even legalized abuse, torture and murder.
People in Ukraine bravely stand up for their rights, fighting state terror and often fall victim to it. The official, far incomplete list of kidnapped, beaten, tortured, arrested and murdered people, among them journalists and politicians, already numbers thousands. In addition to deploying thousands of police to suppress resistance, the regime also cooperates with groups of anonymous bandits who brutally attack “suspected” demonstrators and even random people in the streets.
Many organizations including Transparency International, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, have sharply criticized the actions of the government and protested against the massive human rights violations in Ukraine.
President Yanukovych has not taken any steps towards a real dialog with the opposition and protestors; he only accepts the language of power and money. He and his close associates embody impunity, corruption and severe abuse of power. In order to put an end to the despotism in Ukraine, the corrupt structures must urgently be deprived of power.
We kindly ask you to urgently get active especially with regards to the
1. Release and full rehabilitation of all political prisoners: Demand that unlawfully arrested people are immediately released. Without justification they are kept in so called “isolators” which have worse conditions than the Soviet Union labour camps; each day of waiting brings affected people irrevocable harm. Additionally, many of them are injured and need urgent medical help.
2. Assist in restoring justice: Support a proper investigation of the cases of imprisonment, kidnapping, torture and murder. Those who instructed the bashing of peaceful demonstrators have to be punished.
Do not allow the Yanukovych regime to escape punishment for the thousands of victims of its terror. Help to establish nonpartisan and trustworthy courts.
3. Initiate immediate medical aid for the victims: Assist in providing proper medical aid. International assistance is required and may be carried out via the United Nations and Red Cross. Also, help to protect injured protestors from being kidnapped and arrested in the hospitals.
4. Introduce targeted sanctions especially to stop money laundering: Prohibit that banks continue operations with the Yanukovych regime and associated people until further notice, especially until clear evidence is provided, that the assets are not stolen. Freeze or help to freeze their personal and their related enterprises’ bank accounts and assets. Withdraw visa granted to them and stop them from residing in foreign locations. Consider further targeted sanctions
5. Assist the democratic process: Be present in the Ukraine, witness, enter into dialogue with representatives of the civil society and churches, support development projects
6. Support political reforms and economic development: When the new government is in place, support Ukraine financially to get on a path of sustainable economic revival. A kind of „Marshall Plan“, can bring long-term economic benefits to Ukraine and save it from otherwise imminent long-term default.
We would like to call you to do everything in your power as a MEP to assist Ukrainians to win this vehement fight for their rights and values for which Europe stands for too. We kindly ask you to discuss these issues within the European Parliament during the discussion on Ukraine and raise them with the EU institutions, EU member states and international organisations who may assist Ukrainians in their struggle for justice, citizens’ rights and return to political and economical stability.
“Maidan Monitoring” Information Centrer, Chairman of the board,
Journalist, Member of Independent Media Trade Union
Had the Marshall Plan been acttioned, there mighr never have been conflict with Russia and if Ukraine survives the war, it will still be needed to tackle the social problems that led to the current war.
In his overview of Ukraine, Terry Hallman wrote:
There remain approximately 90,000 children in orphanages, 10,000 in the ‘gulags’. Another 200,000 children live on the streets because state-care options have been less tolerable than street life. Because street children are most visible and therefore obvious, other organizations notice them and are making at least token efforts to help them. Nevertheless, the overall problems are systemic. It is not enough to help these kids without dealing with the causes — primarily corruption and displacement of Ukraine’s cash and resources — that put children in such conditions to begin with. This systemic recognition is at least beginning to be understood. The ‘Marshall Plan’ details it, and provides comprehensive solutions with a financial net-cost to government over seven years of: zero.