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A Master of Business Administration is a graduate degree that focuses on business administration (obviously), investment management, psychology and healthcare administration.

Zappa and MBAs

Zappa didn't think too highly of people with this degree.

What do you think happened in this country?

Well, two important things, and each one of them has only three letters: One was LSD, a chemical which is capable of turning a hippie into a yuppie, one of the most dangerous chemicals known to mankind. And the other is MBA. When people started taking MBA seriously, that was the beginning of the ruination of the American industrial society. When all decisions are based on an MBA's concept of numerical reality, you're in deep shit, because the only thing that can be judged as real is that which can be proved by a column of figures. And when all aesthetic decisions are turned over to these kinds of people, who use these criteria to make steering decisions for a company with no regard for people and no regard for what the product really is, and the only thing that matters is maximizing your profit, you have a problem. Because you can't have quality then; you cannot have excellence. Quality's expensive. I think most of these people that come from business schools have the desire to make sure everything is cheesy. That's what happens when you do things that way.

Radio programs material that creates the image for the station that the advertiser thinks will be the best place to put his ad. That's all radio is. It's not a public service, it's a business. These MBA "consultants" advise the people who own these stations and they say, "Look, if you do this, and you do that, then you will have this many people listening to this station, which means you can charge this much more for your advertising. And the people who own the stations don't give a fuck what they play. They run it through a computer and they figure out the average type of stuff that they can put on that will make the most people listen to their station. Here's where their computation falls down. When FM radio first started off, when they first had FM rock, it used to be real creative, because you could hear just about any kind of music at any time. And few people had FM radios. It was regarded as a secondary market. People were still going wild over AM. Then, when people found out they could have all this variety, they started buying FM radios. And that was when the record business really went into a boom. You could hear just about anything – different types of tastes of the public could be met. You could hear a piece of some weird album on the radio, and if that was your style, you'd go out and buy the thing.

"Before any American gets any chance to participate in popular music, the music has to pass through three filters: It has to be OK'd by a cocaine-infested music executive, it has to be aesthetically pleasing to someone who is gay (I have nothing against gays, but their aesthetic is different), and it has to be proven fiscally prudent by an MBA. The net result is what we now get as entertainment."