Legal Studies

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In reference to e-book Chapter 2, problem 11 (found on e-book, p. 73), discuss the questions presented in Cases and Problems 2-11. Are there situations in which a company, for the common good, must give up the economic advantage accorded by intellectual property laws? How should the Bayer credo – Bayer: Success Through Expertise with Responsibility – impact its corporate responsibility in the anthrax situation? In your discussion, make reference to the Social Responsibility of Corporations Matrix, Exhibit 2.2 (p. 48) and the models of business ethics (found in e-book, pp. 47–49).

I believe there are situations in which a company must give up the economic advantage provided by patent laws for the common good. In this particular situation, Bayer should have voluntarily given up its patent to allow other companies to produce Cipro. The anthrax scare was a major public health dilemma, and it was of utmost importance that enough Cipro was being produced to prepare for the worst. I think that if other companies were allowed to produce Cipro, the panic would reside, and maybe people wouldn’t buy Cipro from Mexico, which was irresponsible considering the risks. The Bayer credo – Bayer: Success through Expertise with Responsibility was definitely tarnished when they insisted on holding onto their patent, and when they threatened litigation to whoever violated the patent. According to our text, there are two questions you should ask to determine the role of business in society: 1) whose interest should a corporation serve? And 2) to whom should a corporation be responsive in order to best serve that interest. The answers are “shareholder’s only” and “the larger society”, and the combination of those answers defines the school of thought. I think in this situation with Bayer and the anthrax scare, Bayer was acting with the Inherence school of thought and only considering the shareholder’s with their actions. I believe that if you stick to this school of thought, your...
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