Is Apple CEO Tim Cook insane (or just one heck of a guy)?

“Tim Cook reportedly sent an urgent memo yesterday addressing alleged violations of health and safety at factories of suppliers, following negative stories in NYT and elsewhere,” Rocco Pendola writes for Seeking Alpha. “Cook says Apple is ‘attacking problems aggressively’ and that the company is leading the industry by planning to open up to the Fair Labor Association for inspection of suppliers’ facilities.”

“This sort of response is not very Jobsian. Neither are all of the feel-good memos addressing the ‘team’ and actions such as encouraging members to make charitable donations that Apple would proudly match,” Pendola writes. “That’s very San Francisco of Cook. And that runs in stark contrast to Jobs, who, while born in San Francisco, ended up being, according to Lashinsky’s account, the farthest thing from a ‘do-good liberal,’ at least in the financial and business matters we think we know about via the media.”

“Let me be clear about a few things. As a human, I prefer the Cook style over the Jobs style any day of the week. I’ve learned from experience that you’ll lead a better life doing things the Cook way,” Pendola writes. “That said, I think Jobs would hammer Cook for what he’s doing. At some point, Cook is going to write a memo or do the right thing one too many times out of concern for Apple’s ‘values.”‘ One of these moves could end up harming the business and hurting the stock. Simply put, Jobs probably stayed much further away from this sort of thing than Cook does not because he was a bad guy with no ‘values,’ but because he did not want to wake sleeping dogs or tiptoe around land mines.”

Pendola writes, “I’m not saying Cook’s way of being provides a reason to sell or not buy Apple stock. I am, however, pointing to an area of legitimate concern. People close to the situation seem to think that the worst in Jobs is what brought out the best in Apple. If that was indeed the magic, it’s about to be gone.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Tim Cook is not going to “harm the business” because he believes in doing the right thing and communicating it with employees (and everyone else). If anything, he’ll only enhance the business.

Related article:
Apple CEO Tim Cook calls New York Times supplier report ‘patently false and offensive’ – January 27, 2012

62 Comments

  1. I think America should stop interfering in the affairs of other countries when it cannot put its house in order. Americans tend to think that the US is the most transparent and democratic country in the whole universe. But the recent economic crisis exposed the reality that America has the most corrupt political democracy – no different from the plutocracies of Third-world countries. The only thing America is good at is to sweep the dirt under the carpet until there is no place to hide when things begin to untangle. The varied problems that the US is facing are of its own making. Your politicians are the purveyors of corruption and self-interest.

    The situation of poor working conditions in China is the result of the complicity of American hubris and bad decisions by policymakers and their think-tanks under the instigation of Wall Street to solve the problem the easy way. When the cost of production in America became unbearable for American firms to compete, the buzzwords of “globalization”, “outsourcing”, “down-sizing” and “consumer-is-king” created by Wall Street became a mirage of easy fix for many American companies to take advantage of low labour cost in Third-world countries. American consumers wanted more of everything and the obsession of having them cheap or free but are not willing to give up their excesses and be productive. America also misused its strong currency to manipulate the currency market and to force other countries to dance to its tune.

    Companies are also the victims of political inaction to create a conducive environment for orderly competition. From the time of the Vietnam war to the present, foreign policy has become the preeminent preoccupation, to the detriment of domestic policy. Trillions of dollars, resources, lives and energy were squandered on foreign adventures in order to burnish the reputations of weak leaders.

    The only thing Americans are good at nowadays is to play the envy-and-blame game. Apple is envied because it is successful and therefore it must be the scapegoat of all of America’s problems. However much Apple is able to do to alleviate the situation, the fact remains that Apple is subject to the laws and pleasure of another sovereign country. Apple cannot dictate every thing that is happening in another country; then it would smack of gunboat diplomacy.

    America is broken. It has reached the stage of the law of diminishing returns whereby the more “freedom” that is applied the more injurious it would be for the body politic. It needs a benevolent dictator in the like of Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew to put things right again.

    1. America is indeed broken. And as long as it continues to pursues war as its primary business (hello, Iran, it’s your turn in the barrel), nothing and nobody can put it right.

    2. “The situation of poor working conditions in China is the result of the complicity of American hubris and bad decisions by policymakers and their think-tanks under the instigation of Wall Street to solve the problem the easy way.”

      No, it is the result of China being a Communist state.
      Plain and simple.

      “The only thing Americans are good at nowadays is to play the envy-and-blame game.”

      Yes, you have proven this partially true by blaming America for China’s woes.

      “It has reached the stage of the law of diminishing returns whereby the more “freedom” that is applied the more injurious it would be for the body politic. It needs a benevolent dictator in the like of Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew to put things right again.”

      Out current President is already trying to be that, which is why Conservatives like me want him voted out….

    1. @c1….seems to me all the crazy ones are residing around this thread don’t you think? And its always the same old and tired liberal this and conservative that. Holy crap, although there have been s few pearls of wisdom, the bulk of this thread is pure crap (yeah yeah, somebody give me the inevitable line that I don’t have to read the thread_)
      Although I disagree with his view on a benign dictator (I certainly wish such a beast could exist), TowerTone did dropped one of those pearls’.

      A decent person will give to the best of their abilities, regardless of their political outlook.’ At the end of the day, there are decent people in all camps. Its hard to believe that people think they are more decent to the poor because they are liberal or conservative.
      Another factor some people are ignoring here is that some people give their time rather than money. That is worth so much more as compared to dropping a buck in a salvation army pot and walking way thinking you have done your part.

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