How are you fixed for ethics? Integrity, principle, probity, honesty: concepts that often are overlooked, taken for granted or disregarded in today’s hectic world. ‘Business ethics’ simply isn’t; It deals with values and morals—the way we think things are—and tends to be arbitrary. The real ETHICS we’re talking about is more fundamental and powerful than either business or even legal ethics. This, the real ethics, represents the way things should be.

Ethics. What is it? Well, it’s not the plural of ethic nor is it difficult to define. Think of ethics as truth, and morality as applied truth, better known as honesty.

Can you see how this differs from business ‘ethics?’ Ethics is not debatable. It doesn’t vary with the situation. Nor does it vary with the law. The law is a product of society and can be changed in accordance with society’s wishes. Ethics



“The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is cracking down on states that don’t agree on the supposed impacts of man-made global warming: Embrace the alarm or prepare to have… funding withheld…. [T]he sanctioning will begin in 2016, when FEMA will start denying disaster funding to states that don’t incorporate global warming into their emergency preparedness plans.”

That the global warming issue is political becomes clearer every day.  Congressman Raul Grijalva launched an attack on several scientists who publicly dispute the government’s position that atmospheric CO2 caused by man’s burning fossil fuels is rising to critical levels and must be stopped ‘before it’s too late.’ Several Liberal Senators have gone the same route, threatening to curtail funding of any scientific endeavor that would even present evidence against man’s deleterious effects on nature, going so far as to make such efforts a crime.




One need look no further than the uppermost reaches of academia for examples of ethical disintegration.  And it’s being taught…

From the ethics chair at the Harvard Business School: “What is a lie under circumstances in which no one expects the truth to be told?”

And a professor at the Chicago School of Business tells us that people lie because they are expected to lie–he calls it an “expectations trap.”  There’s more, but the article concludes: “A little lying might, indeed, go a long way.”

From an article “Why Be Honest if Honesty Doesn’t Pay?”(Harvard Business Review): “There is no compelling economic reason to tell the truth or keep one’s word.”  Money is an excuse? More from a Harvard Business Review: “The ethics of business differs from the ethics of religion,” and we are advised to “sin bravely”


ETHICS and RISK MANAGEMENT:  Truth, Trust and Honesty

Risk management is like walking a tightrope.  You can play it safe by walking the low rope.  Or you can walk the high rope with more risk of damage but a chance at bigger gains.  Nobody ever said that walking a tightrope, or making decisions, was easy.

Risk is real, and taking risk is a fact of life.  But taking foolish risks is, in a word, senseless.

An awful lot of risk is being sold by an awful lot of ethicists(?) these days.  Some of them, at very prestigious institutes of higher learning, are teaching their students that it’s OK to lie.  And/or cheat.  Don’t believe it?  Check out  An example from an issue of the Harvard Business Review:  “There is no compelling economic reason to tell the truth



I’ve long suspected that the rampant liberalism of the 1960s would have toxic effects on our society in the future.  The future is now.  That being said, I propose the following:

[My own well-documented research in this area in preparation of my MBA thesis (Unionization And The Professional; Fairleigh Dickinson University, 1970) was done at the very time the movement was active, so I have more than a passing knowledge of the subject.  A recent interview with Fred Siegel by Matthew Kaminski (Wall Street Journal, November 26-27, 2011) brings it into sharper focus.]

Believe it or else: our current financial crisis is in large part a result of public sector unions. The decline of the blue-collar worker in the ’50s resulted in decline in union membership, heralding a decline in union stature and commensurate decline in union power.  In order to survive, unions had to look elsewhere for membership.  Failing in their attempts to unionize private sector (the economy) professionals and white-collar workers, they turned their efforts to the public sector.