Legitimating Market Egoism: The Availability Problem

Journal of Business Ethics 84 (1):89-95 (2009)
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It is a common enough view that market agents are self-interested, not benevolent or altruistic – call this market egoism – and that this is morally defensible, even morally required. There are two styles of defence – utilitarian and deontological – and while they differ, they confront a common problem. This is the availability problem. The problem is that the more successful the moral justification of self-interested economic activity, the less there is for the justification to draw upon. Religious justifications of market egoism at least make a stab at dealing with the problem; secular accounts typically do not



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References found in this work

Ethics and the limits of philosophy.Bernard Williams - 1985 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
The Wealth of Nations.Adam Smith - 1976 - Hackett Publishing Company.
Ethics and the Limits of Philosophy.Bernard Williams - 1987 - Behaviorism 15 (2):179-181.

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