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About the essay:
Attached is the guidelines for the paper. Company: Sinar Mas Group
Focus on why this company is ethically wrong specifically on deforestation of rainforest and poor labor management. Also connect the issue to the essence of capitalism.
Lecture notes are just for references. A Snapshot of the Forms of Ethical Reasoning:
Virtue Ethics: Practical reason is about the transformation of desires and needs toward higher ends chosen for their own sake according to the discovered common good within our collective work of community building. Practical reason is then emancipatory social praxis because it is oriented to that end of making a community of mutual flourishing in which everyone can become an active participant in ruling together.
Utilitarianism: No practical reason as emancipatory social praxis, but only instrumental reason for calculating the most efficient means to privately meet biological necessities and private appetites. We are primarily pleasure seeking machines, and calculating efficient means for meeting arbitrarily programed and predetermined goals set by biological impulses, the market, or majority rules is the sole function of reason.
Deontology: Instead of instrumental rationality, practical reason is upheld like virtue ethics. But it is only the formal cognitive structure of practical reason: not as the social praxis of transforming our nature into its higher social form, but the cognitive ability, in privately meeting necessities, to also adhere to an abstract rule of law universally and equally applicable.
A Brief Summary of all Three Ethical Theories on Justice
Justice is about maximizing utility for pleasure amongst the greatest amount of people, while minimizing pain.
This makes justice a matter of abstract calculation determined by whatever consumer trends happen to dominate, rather than determined by principles, so that the imperative to maximize for majority rule can easily step over individuals and minorities as well as fail to meet real human needs even for the majority.
Justice is about respecting the free will according to a principle of fairness and equality, and thus about making sure majority power doesn’t encroach on the individual right to make one’s own rational decision.
On this basis, and thus against utilitarianism, it grounds justice and rights on a principle of human dignity rather than calculation – individual rights are worthy of respect regardless of what the majority finds desirable.
Deontology’s principle of justice as fairness, however, also remains abstract, often reducing equality to a flat homogeneity that cannot account for different historical inequities and thus differing needs.
Justice is according to need: it is not about simply applying abstract fairness and equality, but about cultivating the wisdom of how to concretely distribute and allocate goods so as to meet the varying levels of need amongst differently situated groups, not only for basic goods, but for developing the social virtues that empower toward distinctive human excellence.
Justice according to need rather than fairness demands the harder work of determining not only the higher needs we all have to become distinctively human but how those needs are to be uniquely addressed in differing historical situations—how to build real equity rather than flatten to abstract equality requires accounting for our diverse social and historical contexts.