Outline of Legal Environment of Business Law Ch1-5

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I. Defining the Law, Morality, and Ethics (1-1)
A. The Law and Morality (法律与道德)
1. Law consists of rules of conduct established by the government of a society to maintain harmony, stability, and justice.
2. Morals are values that govern a society’s attitude toward right and wrong and toward good and evil.
B. Values and Ethics (价值与伦理)
1. Ethics involves an attempt to develop a means of determining what values ought to be.
2. Ethics involves an attempt to formulate and apply rules to enforce values. C. Natural Law Theory (自然法理论)
1. Morality and the law are united in a common bond.
2. Law originates from an objective, superior force.
D. Positive Law Theory (实在法理论)
1. Law comes from social institutions. (社会制度)
2. Law originates from an outside source that has emerged from within society. E. Ethical Decision Making (伦理道德决策)
1. Ethical decisions are made in a variety of ways
a. Some people act on instinct.
b. Some people try to do what they “believe” is right.
c. Some people act within set guidelines.
3. Rules on ethics are admirable; however, they can be contradictory(矛盾的).

II. Ethical Theories (1-2)
A. Ethical Relativism (伦理相对主义,美国比较主流的) 1. There are no objective standards of right and wrong.
2. Standards change based on the person and the circumstance. 3. Ethical relativism is a common position among Americans. 4. Situational ethics, a variation, argues that an individual may judge another’s behavior only by stepping into the other person’s situation.

B. Social Contract Theory (社会契约论,卢梭)
1. Right and wrong are measured by the obligations imposed on individuals by an implied agreement within a social system.
2. People must give up certain freedoms to receive protections in return. C. Utilitarianism (功利主义,效用主义)
1. Utilitarianism focuses on the consequences of an act.
2. It seeks the greatest good for the greatest number.
D. Rational Ethics (理性伦理主义,与伦理相对主义相对应) 1. The theory of rational ethics is objective, logical and relatively consistent. 2. Actions are either right or wrong, regardless of circumstances or consequences. 3. Individuals have a duty to refrain from violating the rights of others. E. Role Model Ethics (道德楷模伦理论)

1. People should pattern their behavior after admirable individuals. 2. The following characteristics can be distilled from role models: a. Honesty (诚实)
b. Compassion (同情心)
c. Integrity (正直)
d. Fairness (公平)

III. Social Responsibility in the Business Sector (1-3)
A. The Traditional Corporate Culture (传统的公司文化) 1. The corporation is the greatest force in the American industrial state. 2. Corporations are legal persons created under the authority of federal and state statutes with certain rights based on that status.

3. The traditional view says that privately owned corporations are created solely to make a profit for their shareholders.
4. A corporate manager using utility thinking asks if a contemplated action would benefit shareholders more than it would cost the corporation. 这四点中,其实前三点感觉都没有什么很大的变化,最大的变化在最后一点) B. Reasons for Social Responsibility

1. Because of legal rights granted to corporations, they owe a duty to act responsibly. (被授权了,所以相对的就有责任了,想起蜘蛛侠里“能力越大,责任越大”) 2. Corporations should accept social responsibility because corporate decision making has an impact on more people than shareholders and corporate managers. (因为本身的影响) 3. Accepting social responsibility is in the long-term best interests of a corporation. (自身考虑) C. Efforts to Promote Social Responsibility

1. Under traditional rules, the primary role of corporations is to make a profit for shareholders.
2. Many corporate statutes now permit managers to consider factors beyond profit in making corporate decisions.

IV. The Relationship Between Law and Ethics (1-4)
A. The Need for Law in our Society
1. Law consists of rules of conduct established by the government to maintain harmony,...
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