Amazon is investing (and hiring) while many other American corporations are milking incumbent businesses, under-investing in research and development, and hoarding cash. To the chagrin of some traders, Amazon is distinctly NOT “maximizing near-term profits” — it is sacrificing near-term profits. It is making less money now in the hopes of making more money and creating more value later. And it is ignoring the howls and screams of short-term traders who couldn’t care less about Amazon’s long-term prognosis, add nothing to the economy, and just want to make money now.
If more American companies started to do what Amazon does — ignore short-term pressures, sacrifice near-term profits, and invest for the long-term — the American economy would start to heal itself quickly. America would create more innovation, more jobs, and more long-term wealth. And, just as important, more Americans would be able to go back to being proud of our corporations and innovators and entrepreneurs… instead of camping in parks and protesting them.