11/14/2008

A matter of ethics

How ethical are we? The word ethics becomes popular over the last few weeks. Even the minibond fiasco becomes a case of ethics to some. But that was pushing it a bit far. The minibond issue is a simple commercial issue, a contractual issue, with legal documents. Once you sign on the dotted line accepting what were written in the document, and if it says you will die after reading it, just too bad. Go to courts, they will interpret it legally. There are contractual terms and obligations. Tough huh? Ethics became an issue in the case of donors of human eggs for scientific experiments. These donors can donate but cannot reap monetary benefits from it. Next came the issue of organ donors. They too should not benefit from donating their organs. But the committe back off a little by saying that some compensation can be made as long as they are not worst off or better off. So the pedicab drivers cannot take more for donating their organs. It will be seen as organ trading. But the specialists operating for these organs can charge for the sky and be paid handsomely for it. Both are saving lives. To stretch the argument a little further, can hospitals whose mission is to save lives be allowed to charge as much as they want as long as the patient can afford to pay for it? Is this a matter of ethics or a matter of business? Is it ethical to keep raising prices of everything because it is convenient to do so and the people cannot object to it? It is quite strange to be discussing about ethics and not being ethical to make money when everyone lives by that principle. Make profits, legally or illegally, is an admirable trait. It is called talent here.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

"How ethical are we?".

redbean; what a question?

The Old Sage touted Ethics(te) as a principal virtue, one must practice ethic in everything one does.

However, in pragmatism, ethic seems secondary to Laws. Ethic is inseparable to justice. But, justice is not neccessarily the end product of Laws(Legality).

In our society, Law is preffered over Ethic, what say You and others?

patriot

Anonymous said...

The greed for money exceeds all evil - New Sage

Matilah_Singapura said...

There is nothing wrong in running an ethical business. If you are unethical, eventually the market will punish you.

Hospitals have every right to charge fees which ensure they meet their commercial goals, and anyone should not be prevented from selling their organs.

"Morality and ethics" are personal matters. Therefore it is not the proper place for the state.

The state's job is to enforce contracts, not to interfere with the voluntary actions of individuals and their enterprises.

redbean said...

the old nkf case speaks for itself and the value of ethics versus legality. anything, unethical or inappropriate, when passed through the proper procedure is deemed as correct and proper, and legal as well. no crime.

we have thrown ethics into the sewers. only a few are still pretending that ethics is an important part in our value system.