Bernie Madoff: Lessons From an Ayn Rand Villain

Bernie Madoff: Lessons From an Ayn Rand Villain

Earlier this year, the infamous pyramid investment king Bernie Madoff was testifying in court, in conjunction with a lawsuit that seeks to get his investors to return their profits to his company’s receiver (see the news story here). Madoff has served eight years of...
Interview: Ayn Rand Institute CEO Jim Brown

Interview: Ayn Rand Institute CEO Jim Brown

The world center for scholarship in Ayn Rand’s writings and advancement of her philosophy, Objectivism, recently announced that its board of directors unanimously voted to hire Jim Brown as chief executive officer. The Irvine, Calif.-based Ayn Rand Institute (ARI)...
Does Acting Morally Cost You?

Does Acting Morally Cost You?

I recently overheard on the radio  someone claim, discussing business ethics : “But of course, acting morally will cost you.” It gave me a pause, despite that being a common view. Why is it a common view? What is the thinking behind it and behind the opposite argument...
A Philosopher’s Package Deal To Misrepresent Selfishness

A Philosopher’s Package Deal To Misrepresent Selfishness

I am teaching a business ethics course to MBA students where we cover the main moral codes, such as altruism (the morality of self-sacrifice) and egoism (the morality of self-interest). While students typically misunderstand both of these codes at the beginning, it is...
What Selfishness Requires: Lessons from Volkswagen

What Selfishness Requires: Lessons from Volkswagen

To say that there is a lot of confusion about selfishness is an understatement. Last week I wrote about Volkswagen’s emissions rigging and argued that by engaging in it, the company was not acting selfishly but self-destructively. Somebody tried to challenge my...
Happiness of Work

Happiness of Work

I live in Canada’s biggest oil producing province, Alberta, where the economic outlook is gloomy as the oil prices are not expected to recover anytime soon. Oil companies and those providing services to them, have gone through waves of layoffs, and thousands of...
Pragmatism is Impractical in the Long Run

Pragmatism is Impractical in the Long Run

Pragmatism—compromising principles to achieve goals—is prevalent not just among politicians (think of President Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran). It is also a common hazard among business people, many of whom think that to succeed in business you have to compromise...

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