ABOUT:  the Crisis of Ethics 
In the small, overpopulated world of our time, the rules associated with the personal, economic and political interactions between us on all levels have become critically important. 
  • Global economics and computer network technology have caused the chain of cause & effect to become more immediate and pronounced. 
  • The accumulation of injuries we cause to each other and to ourselves, by our actions and inactions, lies and mis-statements, greed and selfishness are testing the fabric of civilization. 
  • In our application of socio-economic gamesmanship to the zero sum game of unrestrained capitalism, we are all ethically challenged in many ways, every day. 
  • If we do not recognize and modify our ethics sufficiently to be equal to the challenge, the crisis of ethics facing us will continue to be a root cause for many of the other challenges and crises facing us. 
    Welcome!  Thanks for visiting ethically-challenged.biz . . . 
    For an example, consider the current financial downturn.  What triggered it? 
    It was a failure of the credit markets, the bursting of the real estate bubble.  
    But what was the driving force behind the runup of real estate values that preceded the burst?  
    It was a triple whammy of bad ethics -  
  • 1.  In the credit industry, many hundreds of thousands of home and automobile loans were written and approved for borrowers who were not qualified to repay the loans.  The profit motive in the credit industry degraded common practice and loan guidelines to the point that multitudes of borrowers were doomed to failure. 
  • 2.  Compounding that, higher up in the financial system, unethical yet clever - but not wise - heads in the finance markets devised and sold packaged investment instruments of large quantities of these low quality mortgages, thereby putting lipstick on trainloads of pigs. 
  • 3.  Lastly, government regulators of both the mortgage and finance industries failed in their ethical oversight responsibilities.  
    One sad truth about this example is that there were undoubtedly instances of ethically-minded individuals working in the credit industry who questioned the degradation of industry loan qualification standards - who pointed out that the emperor has no clothes!  It seems that those ethical individuals were largely ignored in the rush to profit from the loan origination fees from all those soon to be foreclosed McMansions, the commissions on the sales of all those pimped out rides, soon to be repo-ed.  
    Our situation in the financial crisis, which was caused by our crisis of ethics, is largely a direct result of human nature and so will be very difficult to overcome > fire-sale.us 
    However, at this point, we really have no choice but to learn to behave ourselves > the-interesting-times.net 
    There is more to it than just the corrupting influence of money, but money and materialism are a huge part of the crisis of ethics. 
    The continual unethical exploitations which occur in our transactions are hidden behind the medium of exchange - money. 
    Without money, if a john had to barter or trade goods or services of equal value to a prostitute for her sexual service, the exploitation would become more easily evident and the transaction would be called into question > scenes-from-the-petting-zoo.net 
    I'm not suggesting that prostitution would not occur without money, it just would not be as easy for either party to do their part and move on, each bearing their own - less than easy - burdens of the transaction. 
    That obviously exploitative transaction was made easy by their ability to negotiate the value of the sexual service in monetary terms. 
    In the same way, other less than obviously exploitative transactions also occur more easily when conducted monetarily, although the exploitation is still present and the subsequent burdens borne by the parties to the transaction are still carried away by each > karmanomics.net 
    Each of us express, in our own way, being human.  That expression can and should be much more than just business, in spite of the heavily used cliche to the contrary, used by many to excuse the fact that they are ethically challenged > its-just.biz 
    I think the key for each of us is to work only as much as is necessary to acquire the necessities of life and then learn the value of non-monetary rewards and pursue those instead > change-thegame.net 
    On the simplest level, unrestrained capitalism is really very similar to the board game, Monopoly. 
    If the accumulation of money is the only object of that larger "game" we are playing, then ultimately those who are willing to do absolutely anything to win will end up with all of it and everyone else will be homeless and hungry > bowl-of-dust.us 
    At that point, the days remaining for the winners with all the money can be counted on one hand, they lose too and the game - and the ethical challenges - will begin again. 
    Thanks again for visiting . . . 
    Mark Gross - my authors' profile & e-pubs list at smashwords 
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