The public accounting industry's voluntary code of conduct in the United States is the American Institute of CPA's Code of Professional Conduct. Based on our analysis, we conclude that the accounting industry's current code is limited in its ability to serve the public interest in three respects. Specifically, the code is input-based, requires no third-party attestation of compliance with the code, and contains no public reporting process of code compliance/noncompliance at the accounting firm level. We propose that the accounting profession (...) should reorient its largely input-based Code of Professional Conduct to include output-based performance measurements. We also conclude that third-party attestation of compliance with the profession's code would help to promote compliance. Finally, we maintain that the accounting industry should initiate a public reporting process at the individual accounting firm level. Such a requirement would add a degree of public accountability as to whether a firm complies or fails to comply with the industry's voluntary code of conduct. (shrink)
There has been a flood of scholarship over the years on whether there is a “right to privacy” in the Constitution of the United States. Griswold v. Connecticut was, of course, the Supreme Court decision that opened the floodgates to this river of commentary. A subject search for “privacy, right of” in the College of William and Mary's on-line library catalog located 360 book titles. A perusal of the leading law review bibliographic indices turned up still more. Whether the Constitution (...) contains some sort of “right to be let alone” is plainly one of the central questions of contemporary constitutional discourse. (shrink)
Article III of the U.S. Constitution establishes an independent federal judiciary: federal courts constitute a separate branch of the national government, federal judges enjoy tenure during good behavior, and their salaries cannot be diminished while they hold office. The framers who drafted Article III in 1787 were not working from whole cloth. Rather, they were familiar with the preceding colonial and state practices, including those from New York. This essay provides a case study of New York's judicial history: the Dutch (...) period, 1621-1664; the Ducal proprietary period, 1664-1685; the Royal period, 1685-1776; and the early state period. As will be seen, New York—among the most significant of the original thirteen states—was a state groping towards a new ideal of judicial independence: an ideal that became a reality a decade after its own constitution was enacted in 1777 and at a different level of government. Significantly, the uncertain status of New York's judiciary had profound consequences for the ultimate expression of judicial independence, judicial review. (shrink)
Although informed consent is important in clinical research, questions persist regarding when it is necessary, what it requires, and how it should be obtained. The standard view in research ethics is that the function of informed consent is to respect individual autonomy. However, consent processes are multidimensional and serve other ethical functions as well. These functions deserve particular attention when barriers to consent exist. We argue that consent serves seven ethically important and conceptually distinct functions. The first four functions pertain (...) principally to individual participants: providing transparency; allowing control and authorization; promoting concordance with participants' values; and protecting and promoting welfare interests. Three other functions are systemic or policy focused: promoting trust; satisfying regulatory requirements; and promoting integrity in research. Reframing consent around these functions can guide approaches to consent that are context sensitive and that maximize achievable goals. (shrink)
Have you ever thought about how self-consciousness (self-awareness) originated in the universe? Understanding consciousness is one of the toughest "nuts to crack." In recent years, scientists and philosophers have attempted to provide an answer to this mystery. The reason for this is simply because it cannot be confined to solely a materialistic interpretation of the world. Some scientific materialists have suggested that consciousness is merely an illusion in order to insulate their worldviews. Yet, consciousness is the most fundamental thing we (...) know, even more so than the external world since we require it to perceive or think about anything. Without it, reasoning would be impossible. Dr. Scott Ventureyra, in this ground-breaking book, explores the idea of the Christian God and Creation in order to tackle this most difficult question. He demonstrates that theology has something significant to offer in reflection of how consciousness originated in the universe. He also makes a modest claim that the Christian conception of God and Creation provide a plausible account for the origin of self-consciousness. He integrates philosophy, theology, and science in an innovative way to embark on this exploration. (shrink)
Abstract The concept of interpersonal forgiveness is described first through an examination of ancient writings and contemporary philosophical and psychological discourse. Two psychological models are then described. The first concerns developmental patterns in how people think about forgiving another. The second describes how people may go about forgiving another. Implications for counseling and education are drawn.
Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein, in Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness, assert that rejecting the use nudges is ‘pointless’ because ‘[i]n many cases, some kind of nudge is inevitable’. Schlomo Cohen makes a similar claim. He asserts that in certain situations surgeons cannot avoid nudging patients either toward or away from consenting to surgical interventions. Cohen concludes that in these situations, nudging patients toward consenting to surgical interventions is uncriticizable or morally permissible. I call this argument: The (...) Unavoidability Argument. In this essay, I will respond to Cohen's use of the unavoidability argument in support of using nudges during the process of informed consent. Specifically, I argue that many so-called ‘unavoidable nudges’ are, in fact, avoidable. Although my argument is directed toward Cohen's use of the unavoidability argument, it is applicable to the unavoidability argument more generally. (shrink)
The relationship between ethics and job satisfaction for MIS professionals is examined empirically. Five dimensions of job satisfaction are examined: (1) satisfaction with pay, (2) satisfaction with promotions, (3) satisfaction with co-workers, (4) satisfaction with supervisors and (5) satisfaction with the work itself. These dimensions of satisfaction are compared to top management's ethical stance, one's overall sense of social responsibility and an ethical optimism scale (i.e., the degree of optimism that one has concerning the positive relationship between ethics and success (...) in his/her company).Results indicate that MIS professionals are more satisfied with the various dimensions of their jobs when top management stresses ethical behavior and when they are optimistic about the relationship between ethics and success within their firms. The one exception to this is pay satisfaction which is unrelated to these constructs. One's sense of social responsibility is also relatively unrelated to job satisfaction. (shrink)
Abstract Two studies with male and female college students (n = 48 in study 1, n = 45 in study 2), who judged themselves to be parentally love?deprived, engaged in a randomised, experimental and control group design focused on forgiving the parent(s). Study 1 was a 4?day workshop centring on a commitment to forgive. Study 2 was a 6?day workshop that included more of the therapeutic regimen from the Enright and the Human Development Study Group (1991) forgiveness model. Study (...) 1 showed only modest effects. The experimental group gained more in hope and in one aspect of forgiveness relative to the control group. Study 2, a more complete programme than the first, showed more broadbased results. Relative to the control group, the experimental group was significantly lower in anxiety and higher in forgiveness, positive attitudes toward the parents, hope and self?esteem. Implications for forgiveness education are drawn. (shrink)
In this essay I discuss a novel engineering ethics class that has the potential to significantly decrease the likelihood that students will inadvertently or unintentionally act unethically in the future. This class is different from standard engineering ethics classes in that it focuses on the issue of why people act unethically and how students can avoid a variety of hurdles to ethical behavior. I do not deny that it is important for students to develop cogent moral reasoning and ethical decision-making (...) as taught in traditional college-level ethics classes, but as an educator, I aim to help students apply moral reasoning in specific, real-life situations so they are able to make ethical decisions and act ethically in their academic careers and after they graduate. Research in moral psychology provides evidence that many seemingly irrelevant situational factors affect the moral judgment of most moral agents and frequently lead agents to unintentionally or inadvertently act wrongly. I argue that, in addition to teaching college students moral reasoning and ethical decision-making, it is important to: 1. Teach students about psychological and situational factors that affect people’s ethical judgments/behaviors in the sometimes stressful, emotion-laden environment of the workplace; 2. Guide students to engage in critical reflection about the sorts of situations they personally might find ethically challenging before they encounter those situations; and 3. Provide students with strategies to help them avoid future unethical behavior when they encounter these situations in school and in the workplace. (shrink)
Can a bomb ever be "clean"? Are we relieved to be warned that there will be an " odor " when once we were told that something would "stink"? Or, to put it another way, when is a euphemism a mark of good taste and when is it a sign of verbal obfuscation? To answer such questions, D.J. Enright invited sixteen distinguished writers to ponder and explore the ubiquitous phenomenon of euphemism. The result is a delightful and provocative collection (...) that not only includes general reflections on euphemism and its history but also treats such specific categories as sex, death, and other natural functions; politics; the language of the great Christian texts; euphamisms spoken to and by children; the law; medicine; office life; and the jargon of official spokesmen, military communiques, and tyrants. Such writers as Diane Johnson, Robert Nisbet, John Gross, Robert Burchfield, and Joseph Epstein bring a variety of perspectives and sensibilities to bear on these topics. Because euphemisms are so intimate and integral to our thinking, any study of them is bound to throw light on the human condition, both past and present. In these essays, humor jostles horror and the homely alternates with the farfetched. Taken together they form an eloquent and often amusing testament to the richness of the subject. About the Author: D.J. Enright is a noted English poet and critic. He recently compiled and edited The Oxford Book of Death. (shrink)
Traditional just war doctrine holds that political leaders are morally responsible for the decision to initiate war, while individual soldiers should be judged solely by their conduct in war. According to this view, soldiers fighting in an unjust war of aggression and soldiers on the opposing side seeking to defend their country are morally equal as long as each obeys the rules of combat. Revisionist scholars, however, maintain that soldiers who fight for an unjust cause bear at least some responsibility (...) for advancing an immoral end, even if they otherwise fight ethically. This article examines the attitudes of the American public regarding the moral equality of combatants. Utilizing an original survey experiment, we find that the public's moral reasoning is generally more consistent with that of the revisionists than with traditional just war theory. Americans in our study judged soldiers who participate in unjust wars as less ethical than soldiers in just wars, even when their battlefield conduct is identical, and a large proportion supported harsh punishments for soldiers simply for participating in unjust wars. We also find, however, that much of the American public is willing to extend the moral license of just cause significantly further than revisionist scholars advocate: half of the Americans in our survey were willing to allow an unambiguous war crime—a massacre of innocent women and children—to go unpunished when the act was committed by soldiers fighting for a just cause. Our findings suggest that incorporation of revisionist principles into the laws of war would reinforce dangerous moral intuitions encouraging the killing of civilians. (shrink)
We used a randomized quasi-experimental design to test the effectiveness of three types of perspective-taking condition in a forgiveness education program. Allport’s Contact Hypothesis was used as a framework for the study design. Eighth graders in an urban Midwestern city were invited to participate. We evaluated the effectiveness of perspective-taking approaches in promoting forgiveness and reducing prejudice, anger and emotional reactivity. We also explored the effects of forgiveness education across socially and culturally diverse groups. We did not find differences between (...) the perspective-taking conditions; however, all three groups improved on both forgiveness and prejudice. We also found the pattern of outcomes was different for the African American participants than for the European American participants. Implications for research and education are discussed. (shrink)
Understood one way, the branch of contemporary philosophical ethics that goes by the label “metaethics” concerns certain second-order questions about ethics—questions not in ethics, but rather ones about our thought and talk about ethics, and how the ethical facts (insofar as there are any) fit into reality. Analogously, the branch of contemporary philosophy of law that is often called “general jurisprudence” deals with certain second-order questions about law—questions not in the law, but rather ones about our thought and talk about (...) the law, and how legal facts (insofar as there are any) fit into reality. Put more roughly (and using an alternative spatial metaphor), metaethics concerns a range of foundational questions about ethics, whereas general jurisprudence concerns analogous questions about law. As these characterizations suggest, the two sub-disciplines have much in common, and could be thought to run parallel to each other. Yet, the connections between the two are currently mostly ignored by philosophers, or at least under-scrutinized. The new essays collected in this volume are aimed at changing this state of affairs. The volume collects together works by metaethicists and legal philosophers that address a number of issues that are of common interest, with the goal of accomplishing a new rapprochement between the two sub-disciplines. (shrink)
The ultimate challenge for psychology as a human science inheres in accessing the experience of the other. In general, the field of psychology has perpetuated the epistemological dualism of distinguishing between the realm accessible by external perception and the realm accessible by inner perception, and hence between the subjective and the objective , regarding the "first person" perspective as a legitimate means of access only to one's own private experience, while insisting that all others' experience must be observed from a (...) neutral "third person" perspective. By reflecting on his participant-observational encounters with the animal other of the Bonobo, the author attempts to demonstrate in this paper the possibility of a third approach between the antinomy of methodological subjectivism and methodological objectivism as a way out of the dilemmas posed by epistemological dualism. The alternative proposed is the "second person" framework of observation, which, by invoking empathic seeing as its means of accessing the private space of the other and creating the space of the "in between", allows for intersubjective engagement in an experiential gestalt consisting of "myself and the other", and offers the possibility of testing one's ‘own' experience of an intersubjective moment in dialogue with the other. In so far as it infers the focusing of consciousness on embodied experience and expression, and the synthesis of receptive and proprioceptive consciousness in "experiaction" , the "second person" perspective restores inner reality to the realm of the observable, and thus reclaims observation as the method of psychology, and behaviour as its subject matter. The notion of empathy and intuition as a reliable and valid mode of access to the psychological life of others is substantiated theoretically with reference to inter alia Husserl's concepts of "coupling" and "co-constitution", Merleau-Ponty's notions of "inter-corporeality" or "carnal intersubjectivity" and of "the intertwining and the chiasm" of the "Ineinander" as constitutive of the "flesh of the world", Laing's postulation of the possibility of "interexperience", and the sense of union with the object of perception implied by Scheler's term "Einsfühlung" as the essence of intersubjective encounter. (shrink)
This book contains essays of literary and philosophical accounts that explain who we are simply as persons, and essays that highlight who we are in light of communal ties. ACTC educators model the intellectual life for students and colleagues by showing how to read texts carefully and with sophistication.