The usefulness of Just War Theory (JWT) has been called into question in recent years for two key reasons. First, military conflicts today less frequently fit the model traditionally assumed by JWT of interstate wars between regular armies. Second, there is a perception that JWT has lost its critical edge after its categories and principles have been co-opted by bellicose political leaders. This paper critically examines two responses to these concerns which shift the locus of responsibility for wars towards either (...) individual citizens or soldiers. Both attempts to revitalize JWT rely upon idealized conditions which preclude their pragmatic employment. I propose that, in order to arrive at a non-idealized JWT that individuals can apply in a critical fashion, an alternative focus upon a more basic question of political philosophy is required: Under what conditions, if any, are individual soldiers or citizens politically obligated to fight for their state? (shrink)
This paper examines recent arguments by Michael Walzer and Uwe Steinhoff for justifying or excusing indiscriminate terrorism by means of invoking ‘emergency’ circumstances. While both authors claim that the principle of non-combatant immunity can be justifiably overridden under extreme circumstances, it is argued here that neither provides a convincing argument as to when and why the survival of some innocents ought to counterbalance the harms or rights violations of indiscriminate terrorism. A defensible emergency justification for indiscriminate terrorism is proposed and (...) shown to open the door to a broader, non-emergency rationale for conceivably excusing or justifying indiscriminate terrorism. (shrink)
This paper criticizes three assumptions regarding terrorism and the agents who carry it out: 1) terrorists are always indiscriminate in their targeting, 2) terrorism is never effective in combating oppression, and 3) terrorists never participate in fair negotiations as they merely wish to switch places with their oppressors. By criticizing these three prejudices against terrorism, the paper does not attempt to justify or excuse terrorism generally nor in the specific case of Sri Lanka which is examined. Instead, it creates the (...) necessary room for such justifications or excuses to be critically appraised by dismantling the popular myths surrounding terrorism. (shrink)
We report the results of a study that examines the association between gender and individuals’ intentions to report fraudulent financial reporting using non-anonymous and anonymous reporting channels. In our experimental study, we examine whether reporting intentions in response to discovering a fraudulent financial reporting act are associated with the participants’ gender, the perpetrator’s gender, and/or the interaction between the participants’ and perpetrator’s gender. We find that female participants’ reporting intentions for an anonymous channel are higher than for male participants; the (...) fraud perpetrator’s gender and the interaction with participants’ gender were not significantly associated with anonymous channel reporting intentions. Neither of the two factors nor the interaction between the two factors was associated with reporting intentions to a non- anonymous reporting channel. Results from an additional analysis indicate that male and female participants differ in the extent to which they judge the reduction in personal costs of an anonymous reporting channel compared to a non-anonymous reporting channel and that the reduction in personal costs mediates the relationship between participant gender and anonymous reporting intentions. (shrink)
The frequency of earnings restatements has been increasing over the last decade. Restating previous earnings erodes perceived trustworthiness and competence of management, giving firms strong incentives to take actions to enhance perceived credibility of future financial reports [Farber, D. B.: 2005, The Accounting Review 80(2), 539–561.]. Using an experimental case, we examine the ability of post-restatement actions taken by a firm to positively influence non-professional investors’ perceptions of management’s financial reporting credibility. Our examination considers credibility judgments following two types of (...) restatements – those resulting from fraud in which the character, ethics, and values of an organization may be called into question [cf. Copeland, Jr., J. E.: 2005, Accounting Horizons 19(1), 35–43.], and those resulting from non-fraud (i.e., aggressive accounting). Based on the information in the experimental case, non-professional investors take the role of potential equity investors and make a judgment about management’s financial reporting credibility after reviewing a set of post-restatement actions taken by a firm. The possible actions include changes in four corporate governance mechanisms (i.e., internal audit function, external audit firm, board of directors, CFO) and a buyback of company stock. Our results provide an important contribution to the literature by demonstrating that among non-professional investors, perceptions of management’s financial reporting credibility are affected both by the post-restatement action taken and the nature of the restatement. These results offer insight into the formation of a key credibility judgment made by non-professional investors following a trust-destroying event, an earnings restatement. (shrink)
This paper examines the role of management’s earnings preannouncements on judgments about its trustworthiness by nonprofessional investors. We predict that management’s preannouncement decision and the resulting direction (e.g., favorable vs. unfavorable) of the earnings surprise influence investors’ ethical judgments about management’s trustworthiness; these judgments, in turn, are associated with investors’ other investment related judgments. We test our predictions in an experiment in which MBA students make investment-related judgments under four different preannouncement strategies. Consistent with our predictions, the results of our (...) study show that managers’ preannouncement decisions are significantly associated with investors’ evaluations of management’s trustworthiness. Specifically, holding the size of the earnings surprise constant, we find that judgments of management’s trustworthiness are damaged more following (a) a negative as opposed to a positive earnings surprise, and (b) the release of a preannouncement compared to when management does not issue a preannouncement. Also consistent with our predictions, we find that evaluations of management’s trustworthiness are significantly and positively associated with judgments of the attractiveness of the firm’s equity as an investment. Based on our findings, we encourage further research to explore whether managers understand the trust implications associated with their preannouncement decisions and the extent to which this understanding influences their disclosure decisions. (shrink)
In this paper, a two-fold strategy is carried out for gaining conceptual clarity in response to the question: What is terrorism? The first stage is to defend a broad working definition of terrorism that emphasizes the instrumental employment of terror or fear to obtain any number of possible ends. As proposed in this paper, Terrorism is an act or threat of violence to persons or property that elicits terror, fear, or anxiety regarding the security of human life or fundamental rights (...) and that functions as an instrument to obtain further ends. This instrumentality relies upon either an explicit or implicit threat of separate acts of future violence. It is argued that such a functionalist approach to defining terrorism captures the core qualities that unite the broad family of both political and nonpolitical terrorist actions. At the same time, the proposed definition avoids the problems associated with other approaches that either focus upon the terrorist’s ‘unconventional’ tactics, or the ‘innocence’ of their targets, or their coercive intentions. The breadth of the proposed definition allows for the more nuanced typological analysis in the second stage. The typology is primarily an analysis of the modes of terrorism’s instrumentality. Thus, the broad phenomenon of terrorism is divided according to factors of targets, the degree of force employed, agency, and the geographic context of the action. It is only by drawing out the diverse types of terrorism that the projects of morally evaluating terrorism and formulating a just response to terrorism can take place in a concrete and meaningful way. (shrink)
The Advaita Vedānta notion of ātman/Brahman presents a serious philosophical challenge to this school-namely, it demands that they explain how all (reality) can be undivided, unchanging, and pure consciousness, yet appear to be everything but nondual, unchanging, and pure consciousness. The Advaita answer is avidyā, ajāna (ignorance). This answer tells us that Brahman does not really change; it is only ignorance that makes it appear to change. This answer has engendered as many questions as it has resolved, and it is (...) possible that they can be boiled down to the following: how can vidyā and avidyā be simultaneous and coterminous? After reviewing the Advaita responses to the debates regarding avidyā, which arose within Advaita and between Advaitins and their opponents, a traditional Advaita path will be followed by offering an analogy to illuminate this quandary. The strength of this contemporary analogy, based on holography, lies in its ability to illuminate the nature of Brahman as being without parts, without duality, without change; yet holography presents us with images that appear to change and be with parts. (shrink)
Recent, well-publicized accounting scandals have shown that the penalties outsiders impose on those found culpable of earnings management can be severe. However, less is known about how colleagues within internal labor markets respond when they believe fellow managers have managed earnings. Designers of responsibility accounting systems need to understand the reputational costs managers impose on one another within internal labor markets. In an experimental study, 159 evening MBA students were asked to assume the role of a manager in a company (...) and respond to a scenario in which another manager (the target manager) has the opportunity to engage in earnings management. Participants provided causal attributions, assessed the morality of the target manager, and indicated whether they would change their judgments about the target manager's reputation. The study manipulated three between-subjects factors: (1) whether the target manager chose to engage in earnings management, (2) whether the company's budgetary control system was rigid or flexible, and (3) whether the target manager's work history was average or above average. We found that causal attributions are affected more by the budgetary systems when the target did not manage earnings than when the manager did. We also found that morality judgments were significantly associated with the target manager's behavior, but not with the budgetary system. In addition, participants' judgments about the target manager's reputation were more strongly associated with morality judgments than with causal attributions. We discuss implications of the role of reputation in management control systems design. (shrink)
Previous accounting ethics research berates auditors for ethical lapses that contribute to the failure of Andersen (e.g., Duska, R.: 2005, Journal of Business Ethics 57, 17–29; Staubus, G.: 2005, Journal of Business Ethics 57, 5–15; however, some of the blame must also fall on regulatory and professional bodies that exist to mitigate auditors’ ethical lapses. In this paper, we consider the ethical and economic context that existed and facilitated Andersen’s failure. Our analysis is grounded in Akerlof’s (1970, Quarterly Journal of (...) Economics August, 488–500) Theory of the Market for Lemons and we characterize the market for audit reports as a market for lemons. Consistent with Akerlof’s model, we consider the appropriateness of the countervailing mechanisms that existed at the time of Andersen’s demise that appeared to have effectively failed in counteracting Andersen’s ethical shortcomings. Finally, we assess the appropriateness of the remedies proposed by the Sarbanes–Oxley Act of 2002 (SOA) to ensure that similar ethical lapses will not occur in the future. Our analysis indicates that the SOA regulatory reforms should counteract some of the necessary conditions of the Lemons Model, and thereby mitigate the likelihood of audit failures. However, we contend that the effectiveness of the SOA critically depends upon the focus and attention of the␣Public Companies Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) towards assessing the ethical climates of public accounting firms. Assessments by the PCAOB of public accounting firm’s ethical climate are needed to sufficiently ensure that public accounting firms effectively promote and maintain audit quality in situations where unconscious bias or economic incentives may erode the public accounting firm’s independence. (shrink)
The Sarbanes–Oxley Act of 2002 requires audit committees of public companies’ boards of directors to install an anonymous reporting channel to assist in deterring and detecting accounting fraud and control weaknesses. While it is generally accepted that the availability of such a reporting channel may reduce the reporting cost of the observer of a questionable act, there is concern that the addition of such a channel may decrease the overall effectiveness compared to a system employing only non-anonymous reporting options. The (...) rationale underlying this concern involves the would-be reporter’s likelihood of reporting, the seriousness with which the organization treats an anonymous report, and the organization’s ability to thoroughly follow-up the report. Thus, we explore the extent to which the availability of an anonymous reporting channel influences intended use of non-anonymous reporting channels. Further, in response to Sarbanes–Oxley and the environment of financial scandals that led to its passage, many firms are strengthening their internal audit departments, and providing them with greater independence from upper management’s direct control. Accordingly, our examination tests whether the intended use of the internal audit department as an internal reporting channel is greater when the internal audit department is of “high” versus “low” quality. Finally, the study investigates intended reporting behavior across three different cases (e.g., settings). Results show that the existence of an anonymous channel does reduce the likelihood of reporting to non-anonymous channels, that generally the internal audit department quality does not affect reporting to non-anonymous channels, and that case-setting affects the type of channel to be used. Implications from the study are discussed. (shrink)
This paper articulates an infusion model of ethics education for engineering students by illuminating the value of a religious studies course on yoga. This model is distinguished from four other possible approaches that have traditionally been used to prepare engineering students to face the challenges of the work place. The article is not claiming that this approach should be used to the exclusion of the other approaches, but rather that it adds strength to the other approaches. Specifically, the article claims (...) that the infusion model provides an opportunity for students to reflect upon the foundational ethical positions emanating from the world’s religions and thereby provides them with a vista from which they can not only ask what professional ethical code applies in a given situation, but also ponder the nature of character needed to follow that ethical code. (shrink)
Organizations are increasingly embedded with consultants and other non-employees who have the opportunity to engage in wrongdoing. However, research exploring the reporting intentions of employees regarding the discovery of wrongdoing by consultants is scant. It is important to examine reporting intentions in this setting given the enhanced presence of consultants in organizations and the fact that wrongdoing by consultants changes a key characteristic of the wrongdoing. Using an experimental approach, the current paper reports the results of a study examining employees (...) reporting intentions subsequent to their discovery of wrongdoing by a consultant. The results of the study indicate that perceptions about the seriousness of a wrongdoing, personal costs and personal responsibility related to reporting a wrongdoing, and moral-equity judgments are significantly associated with reporting intentions for a normal (non-anonymous) reporting channel. Only perceptions of seriousness and personal costs are significantly associated for an anonymous reporting channel. Lastly, while personal costs for the anonymous reporting channel were lower than the normal reporting channel, reporting intentions were similar across the two channels. (shrink)
Krishnachandra Bhattacharyya, one of the preeminent Indian philosophers of the 20th century, proposed that the absolute appears in three alternative forms - truth, freedom and value. Each of these forms are for Bhattacharyya absolute, ultimate, not penultimate. Each is different from the other, yet they cannot be said to be one or many. He contends that these absolutes are incompatible with each other and that an articulation of the relation between the three absolutes is not feasible. This paper (...) will review Bhattacharyya's presentation of the absolute in its alternative forms and will place these abstractions within the context of three specific religious traditions that he sees illustrating his point. Then, using a model based upon holography, I will illuminate with 'concrete images' that which Bhattacharyya could deductively formulate but could not logically integrate. Holography, the process by which three-dimensional images are produced from an imageless film - a film in which each part can reproduce the whole - will be used as a heuristic device to illuminate the simultaneous and mutually interpenetrating existence of the absolute in three forms. This model will illumine how these three forms can be conceived of as not the same yet not other and how these forms can be incompatible as absolutes, but metaphysically inseparable. (shrink)
The current study is designed to propose and test a model about the ethical reputation of a target manager who must decide whether to engage in earnings management. We employ an experimental approach to examine the potential negative reputation effects within the internal labor market of a firm that occur as a consequence of earnings management. We examine participants’ responses to a hypothetical (target) manager when both the target’s behavior and the corporate incentives were manipulated. Participants assessed how ethical they (...) believed a target manager to be, based on the target’s decision regarding earnings management and the nature of the corporate incentives. Participants also assessed the target’s managerial ability. Participants’ judgments regarding the target’s morality were significantly affected by the target’s behavior, but were not affected by the incentive structure. Ability judgments were significantly and positively related with morality assessments. Further analysis indicates that morality assessments mediate the relationships between the target’s behavior and the participants’ willingness to extend work-related opportunities to the target. Implications of these results for management control systems design and for future research are discussed. (shrink)
Rachlin's thought-provoking analysis could be strengthened by greater openness to evolutionary interpretation and the use of the directed attention concept as a component of self-control. His contribution to the understanding of prosocial behavior would also benefit from abandoning the traditional (and excessively restrictive) definition of altruism.
Perceptual learning mechanisms derived from Hebb's theory of cell assemblies can generate prototypic representations capable of extending the representational power of TEC (Theory of Event Coding) event codes. The extended capability includes categorization that accommodates “family resemblances” and problem solving that uses cognitive maps.
Merchant and Rockness (1994, p. 92) characterize earnings management as "probably the most important ethical issue facing the accounting profession" and provide initial evidence of the ethical judgments of various organizational members. The current study extends their work by examining the extent to which an individual''s ethically-related judgments in response to earnings management activities are associated with the individual''s role.In an experimental study, evening MBA students read three hypothetical scenarios involving a manager engaging in earnings management. The scenarios involved a (...) gain from an operating activity, a gain from an accounting activity, and a loss from an accounting activity. Before reading the cases, however, participants were randomly assigned to one of three roles: a shareholder, another manager from the company who is unfamiliar with the manager in the case, or another manager from the company who is familiar with the manager in the case. Following each case, participants made four ethically related judgments. (shrink)
Page's target article makes a good case for the strength of localist models. This can be characterized as an issue of where new information is integrated with respect to existing knowledge structures. We extend the analysis by discussing the dimension of when this integration takes place, the implications, and how they guide us in the creation of cognitive models.
Pulvermüller's work in extending Hebb's theory into the realm of language is exciting. However, we feel that what he characterizes as a single cell assembly is actually a set of cooperating cell assemblies that form parts of larger cognitive structures. These larger structures account more easily for a variety of phenomena, including the psycholinguistic.
We propose a way in which Barsalou could strengthen his position and at the same time make a considerable dent in the category/abstraction problem (that he suggests remains unsolved). There exists a class of connectionist models that solves this problem parsimoniously and provides a mechanistic underpinning for the promising high-level architecture he proposes.
Although Glenberg's theory benefits from the incorporation of a suppression concept, a more differentiated view of suppression would be even more effective. We propose such a concept (based on the attention framework first developed by William James in the late nineteenth century), showing how it accounts for phenomena that Glenberg describes and also for phenomena that he ignores.
Abstract Daniel H. H. Ingalls referred to Gaudap?da's M?nd?kya K?rik?, a very early Advaita text, as ? ... the most puzzling perhaps, of all Sanskrit philosophical texts?. This article shows that some of the philosophical quandaries associated with this text are the result of inappropriately imposing a graphic and prose model of textuality upon a text composed in the k?rik? (memorial verse) genre and in an oral cultural context. Developing a model of textuality consistent with the literary genre and cultural (...) context, the article is not only able to resolve some of the philosophical problems associated with the text, but also raises the possibility that this inappropriate hermeneutical process has contributed to mislabelling Gaudap?da as an idealist. (shrink)