According to V. R. Ruggiero, how many concerns are common to most ethical systems?
F 1. All egoists endorse hedonism.
T 2. Egoists can identify the good with knowledge.
T 3. A common objection to ethical egoism is that it ignores blatant wrongs.
F 4. Bentham and Mill had the same conception of pleasure.
T 5. Actions affect people to different degrees.
F 6. Utilitarianism requires us to disregard our own pleasure.
T 7. Utilitarianism provides a clear and straightforward basis for formulating and testing policies.
T 8. Under eminent domain the government can appropriate private property for public use.
T 9. Kant’s categorical imperative holds that we should always act in such a way that we can will the maxim of our action to be universal law.
F 10. W. D. Ross endorsed utilitarianism.
F 11. A prima facie obligation cannot be overridden.
T 12. Human rights are universal.
Outline both act utilitarianism and rule utilitarianism, making it clear how they are different from each other. Of these two utilitarian theories, which do you believe is the most persuasive, and why? Do you believe that we should accept this approach to ethics? Why, or why not? Justify and illustrate your answers by reference to how utilitarianism could held in formulating policies within an organization context.
What is W.D. Ross’s view of ethics? How does it differ from the views of Mill and Kant? Do you believe that this view of ethics is applicable to a business setting? Why, or why not? Do you believe that it should be accepted generally? Do you think that your answers to the last two sub-questions should be the same, or should they differ? Why do you think as you do?
Outline Kant’s account of ethics. How, according to Kant, should we treat people—and why does he believe this? Do you agree? If we accepted a Kantian approach to morality, would we need to change how we conduct business? If so, provide examples to illustrate your claims and explain why Kant would require the changes you outline. If not, why not?
Do you believe that businesses should adopt a policy of business egoism? Would such a policy be best suited to the nature of business or not? Why do you believe as you do?
Do you believe that humans are naturally selfish? Explain your answer. Does your answer to this question have any ramifications for (a) which moral theory we should adopt, and (b) how we should structure business organizations?
What do you believe the optimal moral code should look like? Do you believe that people would be intrinsically motivated to follow such a code, or not? If so, why do you believe as you do? If not, how should they be motivated to behave morally?