Ford Pinto Theory

739 Words 3 Pages
In the span of eight years during the 1970s, over two million Ford Pintos were purchased by the American public. Unbeknownst to them, the cars they had purchased also functioned as fiery death traps. For eight years, the Ford Automotive Company showed how the theories of Milton Friedman worked in real life. Making millions while taking lives.

The Story of Ford
The Ford Pinto was the brain child of Lee Iococca, who had taken the helm of the Ford Automotive Company in the 1960s. Iococca wanted a Ford product to compete with other subcompact cars on the market, forming a team to create the pinto. Beyond a shadow of a doubt, the most important result of Ford creating the Pinto had to be profit, and Iococca had several specific details to make sure the Pinto was a profitable adventure.

It took 25 months for the first Ford Pinto
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“There is only one social responsibility of business — to use its resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits so long as it stays within the rules of the game, which is to say, engages in open and free competition without deception or fraud” (Weinstein 164.)

Friedman believed that a corporate executive who did not work to gain as much money as possible for his employers, was taxing them. If someone did something “for the good of the general public” they were hurting their own company. Referring to how people in society believe businesses are supposed to help their communities Friedman says “Business as a while cannot be said to have responsibilities” (Weinstein 157)

For eight years, the sole goal of Ford was to increase profit, directly in-line with the beliefs of Friedman. Ford kept within the laws of the time even delaying laws to keep their actions “legal”. Iococca, the “Corporate Executive” behaved the way Friedman modeled, searching for as many profits for his company as

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