(Professor Silverman


Philosophy of Business Ethics Midterm Study Guide 1) Define:
Relativism Egoism (Ethical) -Ethical & psychological theory, advocates individual self-interest as guiding principle. -A consequentialist theory: determines if an action was correct by the result (positive outcome = correct act). Ethical Egoism Everyone should go out there and maximize results for one’s self (e.g. but doesn’t mean go kill people to protect yourself) Psychological Egoism People are motivated by self interest Utilitarianism -Maximizing happiness for everyone on a long-term scale. -Emphasis on results. -A consequentialist theory: determines if an action was correct by the result (positive outcome = correct act). Kantianism -Do not use people (“means and “ends) -Emphasis on principles. -A non-consequentialist theory: What matters is the nature of the act itself, not just its end results. Universal Law -Only will people with principles (whether or not they’re principles you’d live by) -Ask yourself, is the action compatible with dignity? -Ask yourself, if everybody did this action, would the world fall apart?

2) Give an argument for and against:
Relativism (argument) -That’s the way the world should be. (cons) -Theory implies lack of moral progression -If you’re an ethical relativist, you’re immoral. Egoism (argument) -You know what your own desires and needs are, so each person should go pursue their own happiness rather than try to guess what pleases other people. (cons) -Life might become short -Ignores blatant wrongs Psychological Egoism (cons) -Accuses people of selfishness, e.g. when being nice to others, you’re only being nice to others because it makes you feel good about yourself. Utilitarianism (argument) -Benefits everyone, regardless of route chosen to accomplish goal. (cons) -e.g. Violating the rights of 1 person just to promote happiness of 10 people -If you believe people have rights, there’s something unjust about exploiting 1 person for the rest.

Kantianism (argument) (cons) Implies you should never lie, but if you were living in Nazi Germany, it would be a good idea to lie.

6) The 4 components in common conceptions of justice:
1. 2. 3. 4. Fairness Equality Rights Desserts (you get what you deserve; e.g. if you work hard, will get a good dessert and vise versa)

7) Compare / Contrast:
Utilitarian – Theory of Justice -Aims at happiness for everyones Libertarian – Theory of Justice -2 Rules that… Rawlsian – Theory of Justice -“Veil of Ignorance” rule of thumb -1. As much liberty compatible w/equal liberty for all, any inequality inflicted should be because of benefit given to least advantaged. -2. Any position in society open to all to compete for.

8) The principles that each of 3 theories of justice would suggest in Eminent Domain:
Utilitarian – Theory of Justice – Eminent Domain View -Agrees with Eminent Domain Libertarian – Theory of Justice – Eminent Domain View -Disagrees with Eminent Domain Rawlsian – Theory of Justice – Eminent Domain View -If Eminent Domain benefits lots of people on the expense of 1 person, should be done.

9) The 4 components of Capitalism:
1. Limited Liability 2. Profit Motive (people do the things they do bc they expect a reward. If a share of the profit is not given to workers, they will not be driven to succeed.) 3. Competition 4. Private Property -Companies splitting stocks up among shareholders. -(John Locke: we should enjoy the fruits of our efforts)

10) Adam Smith’s Invisible Hand Theory:
-Says the world is set up in a way where you give customer good product, and treat employees great, which will make efficiency go up and thus everyone benefits; there is no need for government interference. -Whatever in the interest in an individual is the same interest in society.

11) Criticisms of Capitalism:
1. Inequality The disparity between how much the CEO makes compared to the bottom is a huge difference 2. View of Human Nature -People are only motivated to work for money -Our relationship with one another is based on how we can benefit from one another. 3. Exploitation -Employees get no credit / acknowledgement on each product they make, e.g. consumer won’t know the product they purchased was done by the worker “Batool” -There’s something detaching about labor workers who are not credited -e.g. Lots of people died building the Empire State Building 4. Hard to Break in -Hard for small “mom & pop” shops to break into the Targets and the Wal-Marts. 5. Corporate Welfare -When big companies break laws, politicians tend to waive punishment to save jobs of all their workers – which in turn politician has a higher chance of being re-elected. -Saves the company’s ass when they broke the law.

12) The basis for 2 different types of rights:
John Stuart Mill 1. Negative Rights -Importance of liberty and rights without government interference. Karl Marx 2. Positive Rights -The right to receive something (this is not a right for protection)

13) Compare/Contrast views from contemporary views of justice:
Aristotle Aquinas -Justice is a virtue every person can develop -Justice deals with interactions with other people, which is why people can be trained to develop it.

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