It should not be difficult to love Amazon. To consumers, it offers choice and convenience. Countless internet ventures have relied on its cheap, flexible cloud computing services to start and scale up. Amazon makes titans, such as Walmart, work hard for their revenue, offers a shopping search engine that is Google’s only serious rival, raises the bar for TV networks, and sells tablet computers at a price to make Apple loyalists stop and think. Amazon is also giving the US economy what it needs. Two economists, Germán Gutiérrez and Thomas Philippon, have argued that corporate America is under-investing. One reason is that companies are impatiently funneling cash to investors and executives rather than taking a long-term view. If that is a worrisome state of affairs — and it should be — then Amazon is the shining counter-example. The online retailer’s strategy is driven not by short-term profit but by investment, innovation and growth. If only there were a few more companies like Amaz...

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