Motivation

I have given many examples above where it is beneficial for lies and deceit to take place and we will have further illustration of this in some of Part III of the present work. Of course, it is not generally deemed acceptable to lie and cheat indeed even the person doing it may have some form of pathology which is a deviation from rational choice and thus it fails to make them happy. A good barometer of popular opinion is the text of pop songs, and it is very hard to find many of these that...

Macrogreed

In the previous chapter we encountered the conundrums surrounding the relationship between Islam, which maintains a nominal prohibition of usury, and the state of economic development. One direction of explanation is that, at low levels of development, such curbs may be efficient. In a society with low levels of economic development, greed threatens the community. Stocks of food, etc. may be a buffer against risk of natural disasters, attack by enemies, seasonal failures and so on. The greedy...

Business Ethics

On the face of it, it is hard not to envisage a conflict between free market economics and ethics, as normally understood in a philosopher's lexicon, given that telling lies and perpetuating deceit may be a means of increasing profits. We have already encountered this view with Mandeville, in 1704, and the sociologist Ross, in 1907, the latter fulminating against this fact and the former waspishly celebrating it, both at times of a shift in gear towards an ever more business-driven culture....