Chapter 01 - Ethics, Social Responsibility, and the Law
A. A Governmental and Ethical Dyad
1. Weber suggests that a dyad system of morality exists with an “ethic of ultimate ends”
for individuals and an “ethic of responsibility” for national leaders.
2. Many national leaders fail to see this distinction.
B. Shortcomings of the Ethical Dyad
1. Primary shortcoming is the difficulty leaders have executing the ethic of
2. Bromfield argues that American leaders have mishandled responsibilities by focusing
on world responsibility rather than national responsibility.
3. He suggests economic alliances between nations that are close in proximity.
C. The Threat of the Global Skybox
1. Something is wrong with the ethical dyad or at least Bromfield’s contribution.
2. Bromfield suggests that international decision making be based on economic
3. The success of Bromfield’s plan depends upon the benevolence of the rich nations
although the basic rule of Weber’s ethical dyad is that leaders must think in terms of
national responsibility, not benevolently.
IV. Social Responsibility in the Corporate Sector
A. The Traditional Corporate Culture
1. The corporation, the multinational corporation in particular, is the greatest force in the
American industrial state.
2. Corporations are legal persons created under the authority of federal and state statutes
with certain rights based on that status.
3. The traditional view says that privately owned corporations are created solely to make
a profit for their shareholders.
4. A corporate manager using utility thinking asks if a contemplated action would
benefit shareholders more than it would cost the corporation.
B. Reasons for Social Responsibility
1. Because of legal rights granted to corporations, corporations owe a duty to act
responsibly and should not make decisions focused only on profits of shareholders.
2. Corporate decision making has an impact on more people than shareholders and
corporate managers, and these other groups should be taken into consideration.
3. Accepting social responsibility is in the long-term best interests of a corporation
based on goodwill and benefits to the community at large.
C. Efforts to Promote Social Responsibility
1. Under traditional rules, the primary role of corporations is to make a profit for
2. Many corporate statutes now permit managers to consider factors beyond profit in
making corporate decisions.
V. The Relationship Between Law and Ethics (1-5)
A. The Need for Law in our Society
1. Law consists of rules of conduct established by the government to maintain harmony,
stability, and justice in society.
2. Laws define legal rights and duties of people.
3. Laws are needed because people do not always follow ethical principles.
B. Ethical and Legal Anarchy
Copyright © 2017 McGraw-Hill Education. All rights reserved. No reproduction or distribution
without the prior written consent of McGraw-Hill Education.