Business Ethics Psychology Essay Example
Business Ethics Psychology Essay Example

Business Ethics Psychology Essay Example

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  • Pages: 3 (772 words)
  • Published: May 13, 2017
  • Type: Agreement
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Business Ethics

Module 2

Written Assignment

Act utilitarianism and rule utilitarianism are the two different forms of utilitarianism Shaw and Barry distinguish. According to our textbook, act utilitarianism is the classic and most straight forward version of utilitarianism. Act utilitarianism states that we must ask ourselves what the consequences of a particular act in a particular situation will be for all those affected. If it brings more total good than those of any alternative course of action, then this action is the right one and the one we should perform (Barry, V. amp; Shaw, W. , 2010). I take this to mean that as long as an individual determines right from wrong when producing happiness, then happiness will be accomplished if the actions chosen to reach such happiness are “right. ” Rule utilitarianism also wants the outcomes of one’s actions to be hap


piness, but does not necessarily worry about right from wrong as long as the decisions of their actions produce an outcome of happiness.

Declining marginal utility of money is what economists call making the distribution of income more equal to maximize happiness.

Utilitarians want an ultimate outcome of happiness and feel the “right” way to do so is by distributing income more equally, especially to those workers who now earn less than other workers. Utilitarians believe this will increase total happiness.

Robert Nozick’s entitlement theory is a theory of economic justice and states that people are entitled to their holdings as long as they were acquired without violating other people’s rights (Barry, V. & Shaw, W. , 2010).

  • The first principles of Robert Nozick’s entitlement theory is if a person acquires their holdings fairly, then they are entitled to
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  • The second principle is in regards to the transfers of already-owned goods.
  • Nozick’s theory here states that a person is also entitled to a holding if holdings are legitimately transferred to others and how they legitimately get holdings from others. Nozick’s third principle says a person can get a holding only if the other two principles are justly met. He says if a person gets a holding any other way then the other two principles state, that person is not entitled to it.

    Ultimately, Robert Nozick feels if the distribution of goods in a society is just then all in the society are entitled to the holdings they possess (Barry, V. & Shaw, W. , 2010).

    Under Rawl’s Theory of Justice, Rawls believes some will follow the maximin rule for making economic decisions. This rule, according to our textbook, says you should select the alternative under which the worst that could happen to you is better than the worst that could happen to you under any other alternative – that is, you should try to maximize the minimum that you will receive (Barry, V. amp; Shaw, W. , 2010).

    The original position in John Rawl’s Theory of Justice is Rawl’s suggestion that people choose principles of justice solely based on self-interest. He says people should choose the set of principles for governing society that will be best for himself or herself, and loved ones. This way of choosing the principles will not work because people have different self-interests, so agreement will not likely happen.

    Because of this, Rawl’s feels people in the original position should imagine themselves as having no situation in order to make a non-biased decision. This

    is the veil of ignorance, and Rawls says this veil will be lifted once the rules are chosen.

    Utilitarians need to consider many things when deciding what sort of economic arrangements would best promote human happiness. Because utilitarians want an economic system that will bring more good to a society, they need to come up with a system to do so.

    In order to come up with such a system, utilitarians need to understand various possibilities, determine their consequences, and assess the available options. In order for utilitarians to decide on economic arrangements that would best promote happiness, they need to consider the type of economic ownership, the way of organizing production and distribution in general, the type of authority arrangements within the units of production, the range and character of material incentives, and the nature and extent of social security and welfare provisions.

    In my way of thinking, utilitarianism’s increased worker participation and more equal distribution of income best fits. I also feel greater equality of income fits with my way of thinking. If there is a more equal distribution of income, more workers would be happier which, in turn, would increase productivity.


    1. Barry, V. & Shaw, W. (2010). Moral Issues in Business. CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning
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