Abstract: We discuss the role that transnational corporations (TNCs) should play in developing global governance, creating a framework of rules and regulations for the global economy. The central issue is whether TNCs should provide global rules and guarantee individual citizenship rights, or instead focus on maximizing profits. First, we describe the problems arising from the globalization process that affect the relationship between public rules and private firms. Next we consider the position of economic and management theories in relation to (...) the social responsibility of the firm. We argue that instrumental stakeholder theory and business and society research can only partially solve the global governance issue, and that more recent concepts of corporate citizenship and republican business ethics deliver theoretically and practically helpful, fresh insights. However, even these need further development, especially with regard to the legitimacy of corporate political activity. (shrink)
We discuss the role that transnational corporations (TNCs) should play in developing global governance, creating a frameworkof rules and regulations for the global economy. The central issue is whether TNCs should provide global rules and guarantee individual citizenship rights, or instead focus on maximizing profits. First, we describe the problems arising from the globalization process that affect the relationship between public rules and private firms. Next we consider the position of economic and management theories in relation to the social responsibility (...) of the firm. We argue that instrumental stakeholder theory and business and society research can only partially solve the global governance issue, and that more recent concepts of corporate citizenship and republican business ethics deliver theoretically and practically helpful, fresh insights. However, even these need further development, especially with regard to the legitimacy of corporate political activity. (shrink)
In Baumann (American Philosophical Quarterly 42: 71–79, 2005) I argued that reflections on a variation of the Monty Hall problem throws a very general skeptical light on the idea of single-case probabilities. Levy (Synthese, forthcoming, 2007) puts forward some interesting objections which I answer here.
This book describes the shape of a Christian ethic that arises from a conversation between contemporary accounts of natural law theory, and virtue ethics. The ethic that emerges from this conversation seeks to resolve the tensions in Christian ethics between creation and eschatology, narrative and natural law, and objectivity and relativity. Black moves from this analytic foundation to conclude that worship lies at the heart of a theologically grounded ethic whose central concern is the flourishing of the whole human (...) person in community with both one another and God. (shrink)
Following the Texas standoff in 1993 between Federal agents and the Branch Davidians, the Society of Professional Journalists appointed a Task Force, chaired by Bob Steele and Jay Black to examine media conduct during that period and to draw lessons for such situations in the future. The following is the final section of a 27-page report that the Task Force submitted to the Society. It addressed a dozen issues arising from the event and contains reflections and guidelines from the (...) Task Force. (shrink)
Freud described religion as the universal obsessional neurosis, and uncompromisingly rejected it in favor of "science". Ever since, there has been the assumption that psychoanalysts are hostile to religion. Yet, from the beginning, individual analysts have questioned Freud's blanket rejection of religion. In this book, David Black brings together contributors from a wide range of schools and movements to discuss the issues. They bring a fresh perspective to the subject of religion and psychoanalysis, answering vital questions such as: · (...) How do religious stories carry (or distort) psychological truth? · How do religions 'work', psychologically? · What is the nature of religious experience? · Are there parallels between psychoanalysis and particular religious traditions? Psychoanalysis and Religion in the 21st Century will be of great interest to psychoanalysts, psychoanalytic therapists, psychodynamic counselors, and anyone interested in the issues surrounding psychoanalysis, religion, theology and spirituality. (shrink)
As corporations are going global, they are increasingly confronted with human rights challenges. As such, new ways to deal with human rights challenges in corporate operations must be developed as traditional governance mechanisms are not always able to tackle them. This article presents five different views on innovative solutions for the relationships between business and human rights that all build on empowerment, dialogue and constructive engagement. The different approaches highlight an emerging trend toward a more active role for corporations in (...) the protection of human rights. The first examines the need for enhanced dialogue between corporations and their stakeholders. The next three each examine a different facet of empowerment, a critical factor for the respect and protection of human rights: empowerment of the poor, of communities, and of consumers. The final one presents a case study of constructive corporate engagement in Myanmar (Burma). Altogether, these research projects provide insight into the complex relationships between corporate operations and human rights, by highlighting the importance of stakeholder dialogue and empowerment. All the five projects were presented during the Second Swiss Master Class in Corporate Social Responsibility, held in Lausanne, Switzerland on December 12, 2008. The audience for this conference, which examined business and human rights, was composed of researchers, governmental representatives, and business and non-governmental organization practitioners. (shrink)
Stewart Cohen argues that several epistemological theories fall victim to the problem of easy knowledge: they allow us to know far too easily that certain sceptical hypotheses are false and that how things seem is a reliable indicator of how they are. This problem is a result of the theories' interaction with an epistemic closure principle. Cohen suggests that the theories should be modified. I argue that attempts to solve the problem should focus on closure instead; a new and plausible (...) epistemic closure principle can solve the problem of easy knowledge. My solution offers a uniform and more successful response to different versions of the problem of easy knowledge. (shrink)
Epistemological contextualism - the claim that the truth-value of knowledge-attributions can vary with the context of the attributor - has recently faced a whole series of objections. The most serious one, however, has not been discussed much so far: the factivity objection. In this paper, I explain what the objection is and present three different versions of the objection. I then show that there is a good way out for the contextualist. However, in order to solve the problem the contextualist (...) has to accept a relationalist version of contextualism. (shrink)
Arguments to the effect that Church's thesis is intrinsically unprovable because proof cannot relate an informal, intuitive concept to a mathematically defined one are unconvincing, since other 'theses' of this kind have indeed been proved, and Church's thesis has been proved in one direction. However, though evidence for the truth of the thesis in the other direction is overwhelming, it does not yet amount to proof.
One of the most recent trends in epistemology is contrastivism. It can be characterized as the thesis that knowledge is a ternary relation between a subject, a proposition known and a contrast proposition. According to contrastivism, knowledge attributions have the form “S knows that p, rather than q”. In this paper I raise several problems for contrastivism: it lacks plausibility for many cases of knowledge, is too narrow concerning the third relatum, and overlooks a further relativity of the knowledge relation.
Any adequate theory of chance must accommodate some version of David Lewis's ‘Principal Principle’, and Lewis has argued forcibly that believers in primitive propensities have a problem in explaining what makes the Principle true. But Lewis can only derive (a revised version of) the Principle from his own Humean theory by putting constraints on inductive rationality which cannot be given a Humean rationale.
Christoph Jäger (2004) argues that Dretske’s information theory of knowledge raises a serious problem for his denial of closure of knowledge under known entailment: Information is closed under known entailment (even under entailment simpliciter); given that Dretske explains the concept of knowledge in terms of “information”, it is hard to stick with his denial of closure for knowledge. Thus, one of the two basic claims of Dretske would have to go. Since giving up the denial of closure would commit Dretske (...) to skepticism, it would most probably be better to rather give up the information-theoretic account of knowledge. But that means that one of the best externalist views of knowledge has to be given up. I argue here that Jäger is mistaken and that there is no problem for Dretske. There is a rather easy way out of Jäger’s problem. (shrink)
This article explores shifting definitions of propaganda, because how we define the slippery enterprise determines whether we perceive propaganda to be ethical or unethical. I also consider the social psychology and semantics of propaganda, because our ethics are shaped by and reflect our belief systems, values, and language behaviors. Finally, in the article I redefine propaganda in a way that should inform further studies of the ethics of this pervasive component of modern society.
The sensitivity condition on knowledge says that one knows that P only if one would not believe that P if P were false. Difficulties for this condition are now well documented. Keith DeRose has recently suggested a revised sensitivity condition that is designed to avoid some of these difficulties. We argue, however, that there are decisive objections to DeRose’s revised condition. Yet rather than simply abandoning his proposed condition, we uncover a rationale for its adoption, a rationale which suggests a (...) further revision that avoids our objections as well as others. The payoff is considerable: along the way to our revision, we learn lessons about the epistemic significance of certain explanatory relations, about how we ought to envisage epistemic closure principles, and about the epistemic significance of methods of belief formation. (shrink)
The philosophical debate over the compatibility between causaldeterminism and moral responsibility relies heavily on ourreactions to examples. Although we believe that there is noalternative to this methodology in this area of philosophy, someexamples that feature prominently in the literature are positivelymisleading. In this vein, we criticize the use that incompatibilistsmake of the phenomenon of ``brainwashing,'''' as well as the Frankfurt-styleexamples favored by compatibilists. We provide an instance of thekind of thought experiment that is needed to genuinely test thehypothesis that moral (...) accountability and causal determinism arecompatible. (shrink)
I defend a sensitive neo-Moorean invariantism, an epistemological account with the following characteristic features: (a) it reserves a place for a sensitivity condition on knowledge, according to which, very roughly, S’s belief that p counts as knowledge only if S wouldn’t believe that p if p were false; (b) it maintains that the standards for knowledge are comparatively low; and (c) it maintains that the standards for knowledge are invariant (i.e., that they vary neither with the linguistic context of the (...) subject of knowledge nor with the linguistic context of the attributor of knowledge). I argue that this sort of account allows us to respond adequately to some difficult puzzles in epistemology, puzzles such as skeptical puzzles, as well as puzzles that inspire epistemological contextualism. I also maintain that by utilizing what Keith DeRose calls a warranted assertibility maneuver, sensitive neo-Moorean invariantism can account for our epistemic judgments in each of these puzzle cases. (shrink)
In his recent book Moral Skepticisms Walter Sinnott-Armstrong argues in great detail for contrastivism with respect to justified moral belief and moral knowledge. I raise three questions concerning this view. First, how would Sinnott-Armstrong account for constraints on admissible contrast classes? Secondly, how would he deal with notorious problems concerning relevant reference classes? Finally, how can he account for basic features of moral agency? It turns out that the last problem is the most serious one for his account.
This article provides an overview of current and prospective ethical issues facing commercial (as opposed to leisure) travel agents. Industry wide ethical issues include conflicting pressures from suppliers and clients, competency requirements for agents and misleading advertising and sales claims (vaporware in industry jargon). Issues with travel suppliers include calculation and payment of commissions, fare loopholes, frequent flyer plans and the use and abuse of benefits directed to individual employees. Issues with corporate clients of travel agents include hidden preferred carriers (...) or suppliers, client pressure to use fare loopholes and hidden relationships with corporate travel consultants. Future issues include protecting client privacy, free riding, and divergent international business practices. (shrink)
Suppose someone hears a loud noise and at the same time sees a yellow flash. It seems hard to deny that the person can experience loudness and yellowness together. However, since loudness is experienced by the auditory sense whereas yellowness is experienced by the visual sense it also seems hard to explain how.
According to a Moorean response to skepticism, the standards for knowledge are invariantly comparatively low, and we can know across contexts all that we ordinarily take ourselves to know. It is incumbent upon the Moorean to defend his position by explaining how, in contexts in which S seems to lack knowledge, S can nevertheless have knowledge. The explanation proposed here relies on a warranted-assertability maneuver: Because we are warranted in asserting that S doesn’t know that p, it can seem that (...) S does in fact lack that piece of knowledge. Moreover, this warranted-assertability maneuver is unique and better than similar maneuvers because it makes use of H. P. Grice’s general conversational rule of Quantity—“Do not make your contribution more informative than is required”—in explaining why we are warranted in asserting that S doesn’t know that p. (shrink)
Most contextualists agree that contexts differ with respect to relevant epistemic standards. In this paper, I discuss the idea that the difference between more modest and stricter standards should be explained in terms of the closeness or remoteness of relevant possible worlds. I argue that there are serious problems with this version of contextualism. In the second part of the paper, I argue for another form of contextualism that has little to do with standards and a lot with the well-known (...) problem of the reference class. This paper also illustrates the fact that contextualism comes in many varieties. (shrink)
Jessica Brown effectively contends that Keith DeRose’s latest argument for contextualism fails to rule out contextualism’s chief rival, namely, classic invariantism. Still, even if her position has not been ruled out, the classic invariantist must offer considerations in favor of her position if she is to convince us that it is superior to contextualism. Brown defends classic invariantism with a warranted assertability maneuver that utilizes a linguistic pragmatic principle of relevance. I argue, however, that this maneuver is not as effective (...) as it might be. I propose a different warranted assertability maneuver—one that utilizes a pragmatic principle of strength—that affords a more successful defense of classic invariantism, and that helps to establish that classic invariantism is superior to contextualism. (shrink)
Unlike older sciences such as physics and biology, sociology has never had a revolution. Modern sociology is still classical-largely psychological, teleological, and individualistic-and even less scientific than classical sociology. But pure sociology is different: It predicts and explains the behavior of social life with its location and direction in social space-its geometry. Here I Illustrate pure sociology with formulations about the behavior of ideas, including a theory of scienticity that predicts and explains the degree to which an idea is likely (...) to be scientific (testable, general, simple, valid, and original). For example: Scienticity is a curvilinear function of social distance from the subject. This formulation explains numerous facts about the history and practice of science, such as why some sciences evolved earlier and faster than others and why so much sociology is so unscientific. Because scientific theory is the most scientific science, the theory of scienticity also implies a theory of theory and a methodology for the development of theory. (shrink)
Scholars and media practitioners who gathered at "Media Ethics Summit II" explored a wide range of topics, many of them new since the 1987 summit. This article draws from those conversations and from the scholarly papers drafted by Christians and Cooper and distributed prior to the summit. It constitutes an informal agenda of issues and themes for anyone concerned with the current and future states of media ethics. The agenda falls roughly under nine touch points: issues raised by new technology (...) and changing corporate environments; economic and other challenges to truth telling, objectivity, and other traditions; media and government issues; issues of accountability and transparency in all media of communication; educational issues; issues of diversity and globalization of all media; new agendas for ethics research and pedagogy; individual freedom and responsibility, and ongoing monitoring of the media ethics environment. (shrink)
Ethical theories and theories of the person constrain each other, in that a proposition about the person may be a reason for or against an ethical proposition, and conversely. An important class of such propositions about the person concern the boundaries of the person. These boundaries enclose a person's defining properties, which constitute his identity. A person's identity may partly determine and partly be determined by his ethical judgments. An equilibrium between one's identity and (...) one's ethical judgments is the counterpart, at the personal level, of the philosophical ideal of reflective equilibrium between a theory of the person and an ethical theory. (shrink)
Much of our work with enriched experience and training in animals supports the Quartz & Sejnowski (Q&S) thesis that environmental information can interact with pre-existing neural structures to produce new synapses and neural structure. However, substantial data as well as an evolutionary perspective indicate that multiple information-capture systems exist: some are constructivist, some are selectionist, and some may be tightly constrained.
There are many ordinary propositions we think we know. Almost every ordinary proposition entails some lottery proposition which we think we do not know but to which we assign a high probability of being true (for instance:I will never be a multi-millionaire entails I will not win this lottery). How is this possible – given that some closure principle is true? This problem, also known as the Lottery puzzle, has recently provoked a lot of discussion. In this paper I discuss (...) one of the most promising answers to the problem: Stewart Cohens contextualist solution, which is based on ideas about the salience of chances of error. After presenting some objections to it I sketch an alternative solution which is still contextualist in spirit. (shrink)
Why should I be rational? -- Reasonableness-- Scientific objectivity -- Is scientific neutrality a myth? -- Humaneness -- The prevalence of humbug -- The rationality of voting -- Newcomb's problem demystified.
According to the relevant alternatives theory of knowledge (RA), I know that p only if my evidence eliminates all relevant alternatives to p . Jonathan Schaffer has recently argued that David Lewis's version of RA, which is perhaps the most detailed version yet provided, cannot account for our failure to know in cases involving missed clues, that is, cases in which we see but fail to appreciate decisive evidence. I argue, however, that Lewis's version of RA survives exposure to missed (...) clue cases. Moreover, even though Schaffer maintains that Lewis's Rule of Belief provides no protection against missed clue cases, I argue that we should credit the Rule of Belief with ensuring the survival of Lewis's version of RA. (shrink)
Practical conflicts pervade human life. Agents have many different desires, goals, and commitments, all of which can come into conflict with each other. How can practical reasoning help to resolve these practical conflicts? In this collection of new essays a distinguished roster of philosophers analyze the diverse forms of practical conflict. Their aim is to establish an understanding of the sources of these conflicts, to investigate the challenge they pose to an adequate conception of practical reasoning, and to assess the (...) degree to which that challenge can be met. These essays will serve as a major resource for students of philosophy but will also interest students and professionals in related fields of the social sciences such as psychology, political science, sociology and economics. (shrink)
Epistemological contextualists maintain that the truth-conditions of sentences of the form 'S knows that P' vary according to the context in which they're uttered, where this variation is due to the semantics of 'knows'. Among the linguistic data that have been offered in support of contextualism are several everyday cases. We argue that these cases fail to support contextualism and that they instead support epistemological invariantism—the thesis that the truth-conditions of 'S knows that P' do not vary according to the (...) context of their utterance. (shrink)
So, C. I don’t know that T. Premises 1 and 2 are both plausible. However, C seems false—I do seem to know that there is a tree before me. AI presents a puzzle because its two plausible premises yield a conclusion whose negation is plausible. And no matter whether we accept or reject AI, we find that we must give up something plausible—either premise 1, premise 2, or the negation of C. But which of these should we give up? I (...) call this question the skeptical puzzle.1 Recently, Mark Heller2 has argued that we can solve the skeptical puzzle by giving up premise 2. I argue, however, that Heller does not adequately respond to an objection to his proposed solution. I go on to argue that we can solve the skeptical puzzle by giving up premise 1. (shrink)
This paper reviews the literature on male backlash in organizations, proposing a research agenda. It defines backlash, examines its causes and manifestations, who is likely to exhibit it, and offers suggestions for addressing backlash. Backlash may be on the increase in organizations and society at large. Current efforts to weaken or remove the legislative support for employment equity initiatives are one sign of this.
The following four theses all have some intuitive appeal: (I) There are valid norms. (II) A norm is valid only if justified by a valid norm. (III) Justification, on the class of norms, has an irreflexive proper ancestral. (IV) There is no infinite sequence of valid norms each of which is justified by its successor. However, at least one must be false, for (I)--(III) together entail the denial of (IV). There is thus a conflict between intuition and logical possibility. This (...) paper, after distinguishing various conceptions of a norm, of validity and of justification, argues for the following position. (I) is true. (II) is false for legislative justification and true for epistemic justification. (III) is true for legislative and false for epistemic justification. (IV) is true for legislative justification; for epistemic justification (IV) is true or false depending on the conception taken of a norm. Our intuition in favour of (II) must therefore be abandoned where justification is conceived legislatively. Our intuition in favour of (III) must be abandoned, and our intuition in favour of (IV) qualified, where justification is conceived epistemically. (shrink)
This volume addresses some of the central issues of journalism today -- the nature and needs of the individual versus the nature and needs of the broader society; theories of communitarianism versus Enlightenment liberalism; independence versus interdependence (vs. co-dependency); negative versus positive freedoms; Constitutional mandates versus marketplace mandates; universal ethical issues versus situational and/or professional values; traditional values versus information age values; ethics of management versus ethics of worker bees; commitment and compassion versus detachment and professional "distance;" conflicts of interest (...) versus conflicted disinterest; and "talking to" versus "talking with." All of these issues are discussed within the framework of the frenetic field of daily journalism--a field that operates at a pace and under a set of professional standards that all but preclude careful, systematic examinations of its own rituals and practices. The explorations presented here not only advance the enterprise, but also help student and professional observers to work through some of the most perplexing dilemmas to have faced the news media and public in recent times. This lively volume showcases the differing opinions of journalistic experts on this significant contemporary issue in public life. Unlike previous books and monographs which have tended toward unbridled enthusiasm about public journalism, and trade press articles which have tended toward pessimism, this book offers strong voices on several sides of this complex debate. To help inform the debate, a series of "voices"--journalistic interviews with practitioners and critics of public journalism -- is interspersed throughout the text. At the end of each essay, a series of quotes from a wide variety of sources -- "In other words..." -- augments each chapter with ideas and insights that support and contradict the points used by each chapter author. (shrink)
Terrorism in its purest form is self-help by organized civilians who covertly inflict mass violence on other civilians. Pure sociology explains terrorism with its social geometry-its multidimensional location and direction in social space. Here I build on the work of Senechal de la Roche (1996) and propose the following geometrical model: Pure terrorism arises intercollectively and upwardly across long distances in multidimensional space. Yet because social distance historically corresponded to physical distance, terrorism often lacked the physical geometry necessary for its (...) occurrence: physical closeness to civilians socially distant enough to attract terrorism. New technology has made physical distance increasingly irrelevant, however, and terrorism has proliferated. But technology also shrinks the social universe and sows the seeds of terrorism's destruction. (shrink)
Scientific thinkers tend to avoid the word spirituality. Those who use it often hold onto it as a marker for certain values which they feel strongly are important but which they cannot fully account for. This paper, written by a psychoanalyst, enquires whether there may be a place for such a concept, starting from the need to accommodate the existence of consciousness into the scientific world view. The author suggests that the accumulated experience of some religious traditions (though not (...) necessarily their mythology) indicates the existence of a structure to subjectivity which needs to be taken into account, and which is now being approached by developmental psychology and neuroscience. He suggests that two ways of conceiving the world may be called for and may both be valid: firstly, a revised form of scientific monism, and secondly a vision of the world as composed exclusively of subjects. The latter is, perhaps, the vision which the proponents of spirituality are intuitively glimpsing. (shrink)
Topics at a Poynter Institute privacy conference in December 1992 ranged from the role and obligations of the journalist to the rights of victims. Journalists' responsibility to fulfill a dual role of truthtelling and minimizing harm to vulnerable people in society framed the discussion. The public' s curiosity and media obsessions with information about victims of sex crimes are the first topics to be explored. Bob Steele of the Poynter Institute sets the stage for the delicate balance. Helen Benedict, author (...) of Virgin or Vamp: How the Press Covers Sex Crimes, suggests some reforms regarding this area of news. Patricia Bowman, a victim's advocate, talks about her experience as the victim of the media and of a celebrated sex crime case. Elinor Brecher of the Miami Herald discusses a particularly vexing assignment she recently faced, and Tom French of the St. Petersburg Times expresses concern for the subjects of sensitive personal stories and recommends trying to inform them about the story and help them cope with the intrusion into their private life. In separate articles, J. T. Johnson of Sartor Associates in San Francisco and Nora Paul of the Poynter Institute offer insights into the paradox of individual privacy and public right/desire to know, particularly as the issues arise in today's information society. Finally, Robert Ellis Smith, publisher of Privacy Journal, outlines ways media can approach privacy issues and still feel they are on safe ground; he recommends self-restraint in place of government restrictions. The general theme of the Poynter Conference is restraint and concern for others' responsible usage of information that has the possibility to harm others. (shrink)