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Business Law- Chapter 3: Business Ethics, Social Forces, the Law

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Ethics
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branch of philosophy dealing with values that relate to the nature of human conduct and values associated with that conduct.
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Business Ethics
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balancing the goal of profits with the values of individuals and society
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Positive (codified) Law
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test of whether an act is legal is a common moral standard
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Natural Law
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imposes higher standard of behavior than those required by positive law and they must be followed even if those higher standards run contrary to codified law (i.e. slavery)
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Civil Disobedience
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(refusal to obey laws) remedy natural law proponents use to change positive law.
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Kant’s categorical imperative
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you cannot use others in a way that gives you a one-sided benefit.
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Theory of justice (social contract)
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no rules at all, blank slate and universal rules would apply (rational people would think through the results and consequences if there were no rules, and would develop rules that would result in fairness.
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Rights theory (entitlement theory)
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1) everyone has a set of rights, 2) it is up to the governments to protect those rights.
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Ethical egoism
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we all act in our own self-interest and that we should limit our judgment to our own ethical egos and not interfere with the exercise of ethical egoism by others.
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Utilitarians
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most good for the most people
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Moral relativists
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resolve ethical dilemmas according to time and place
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stakeholders
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businesses have different constituencies (voters), stakeholders, with conflicting goals for business
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Stakeholder analysis
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measures the impact of a decision on a various groups and then asks whether public disclosure of that decision is defensible.
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Integrity
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adherence to one’s values and principles despite the costs and consequences
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Conflict of interest
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conduct that compromises that loyalty
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primum non nocere
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“above all, do no harm” (selling a product)