The Power of Ownership: Connecting the Concepts of Issued and Outstanding Shares with the Great Books

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Sep 09, 2023

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The Power of Ownership: Connecting the Concepts of Issued and Outstanding Shares with the Great Books

Introduction:

In the world of finance, the concept of issued and outstanding shares plays a crucial role in determining ownership within a corporation. On the other hand, in the realm of literature and philosophy, the great books have the ability to transcend time and societal boundaries, offering profound insights into the human condition. Surprisingly, there are common threads that connect these seemingly disparate domains. By exploring the significance of issued and outstanding shares and the enduring influence of great books, we can uncover valuable insights about ownership, self-worth, and the transformative power of education.

Issued and Outstanding Shares:

When a corporation issues shares in exchange for payment, the purchaser becomes a stockholder, and the shares are referred to as issued and outstanding. These shares are officially recorded in the corporation's stock ledger, solidifying the ownership relationship. However, when a corporation grants someone the right to buy shares in the future, such as through stock options, these shares are not yet considered issued and outstanding. They do not appear in the stock ledger, and the individual holding them does not become a stockholder until the options are exercised.

Fully Diluted Shares:

In contrast to issued and outstanding shares, fully diluted shares take into account potential future stock issuances, such as stock options. The unallocated option pool, which represents shares that may be granted in the future, is not considered issued and outstanding. Whether a company calculates ownership based on issued and outstanding shares or fully diluted shares depends on the context and the parties involved. However, it is crucial for all parties to clearly express their expectations and use a consistent method of calculation.

The Great Books:

Moving beyond the realm of finance, the great books hold a special place in literature and philosophy. These works have stood the test of time, transcending cultural and temporal boundaries. They have the unique ability to illuminate our shared humanity and provide valuable insights into the human condition. By delving into these great works, individuals can discover a source of self-worth and meaning that goes beyond material limitations.

The Connection:

It may seem unlikely, but there is a connection between the concepts of issued and outstanding shares and the enduring influence of great books. Both involve ownership, whether it be ownership of shares in a corporation or ownership of knowledge and insights gained through literature. In both cases, ownership grants individuals a sense of identity, self-worth, and the ability to navigate the complexities of the world.

Ownership and Self-Worth:

For individuals from low-income backgrounds, ownership, whether it be in the form of shares or knowledge, can be transformative. As discussed earlier, the ownership of shares through stock options can elevate an individual's status and provide economic opportunities. Similarly, the ownership of knowledge gained through the exploration of great books can empower individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. By giving them access to the cultural wealth traditionally reserved for the elite, we provide them with the tools to challenge social hierarchies and navigate a complex world.

Education as the Great Equalizer:

Education plays a pivotal role in empowering individuals and leveling the playing field. Unfortunately, many educational institutions have shifted their focus towards professional and occupational goals, neglecting the transformative power of liberal education. Liberal education, which encompasses the exploration of great books and the pursuit of knowledge for its own sake, can be the most valuable gift bestowed upon young people. It equips them not only with marketable skills but also with the means to challenge societal inequalities and contribute to a democratic society.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Recognize the power of ownership: Whether it is through shares in a corporation or knowledge gained through literature, ownership can provide individuals with a sense of identity, self-worth, and the ability to navigate the complexities of the world. Embrace opportunities to own and invest in both financial and intellectual wealth.
  • 2. Support access to cultural wealth: Break down the barriers that have traditionally limited access to cultural wealth and education. Provide individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds with the tools to explore great books and gain knowledge that can empower them to challenge societal hierarchies.
  • 3. Prioritize liberal education: Encourage educational institutions to prioritize liberal education, which goes beyond professional and occupational goals. By embracing the transformative power of great books and the pursuit of knowledge for its own sake, we can equip young people with the skills to become active contributors to a democratic society.

Conclusion:

In the intersection of issued and outstanding shares and the enduring influence of great books, we discover the power of ownership, self-worth, and education. Both concepts have the ability to empower individuals and challenge societal hierarchies. By recognizing the importance of ownership, supporting access to cultural wealth, and prioritizing liberal education, we can create a more inclusive and equitable society. Let us embrace the transformative power of ownership and knowledge, and harness their potential for positive change.

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