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Mordidas Case Study Presented by: Greg Ehmer Wesley Kean Reid MacArthur Bhargav Viradia.

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Presentation on theme: "Mordidas Case Study Presented by: Greg Ehmer Wesley Kean Reid MacArthur Bhargav Viradia."— Presentation transcript:

1 Mordidas Case Study Presented by: Greg Ehmer Wesley Kean Reid MacArthur Bhargav Viradia

2 Case Synopsis Setting: Mexico City, Mexico Traffic officers pull over cars, officer presents law confirmation of prohibited action, driver slips a bribe ( mordidas in Spanish) Smooth, efficient, and routine transaction widely accepted by both officers and drivers Suburb mayor single handedly makes traffic tickets illegal, resulting in stopped payoffs but a free driving zone in suburb Despite being wrong, the process is economically efficient, cutting out the middle men in getting officers paid Video: klet.html klet.html

3 Cultural Relativism vs. Traditional Ethical Theories Cultural Relativism = The suspicion that values and morality are culture specific and not the result of universal reason. Theyre what a community believes. Traditional Ethical Theories = Formulating rules for action that everyonepeople in all times, places, and communities must obey if they want to consider themselves ethically responsible. Confliction: For cultural relativism, all guidelines are culture specific and one set of rules is not wrong or inferior to another. Conversely, traditional ethics are to be followed in all cultures

4 Traffic Ticket System in Mexico City Values Inconsistency Ease Efficient Advantages Equitable distribution of wealth Cuts down on government costs and court traffic Money always goes to the officers Ethical Justification Cultural relativism: Mordidas is a long standing and accepted means of transaction between the police officials and the violators. Help cops survive Cops are not paid as much as they are in US

5 Traffic Ticket System in the United States Values Integrity Accountability Fairness Advantages Universality Consistency and protocol Ethical Justification Idea of fairness: Aristotle: treat equals equally and unequal unequally (progressive nature of ticket) Right to trial Community as a whole benefits

6 Mexico City vs. USA Ticket Systems: Does Mexico Citys Prevail? Yes. Cops in Mexico are paid much less than in US Widely Accepted and long standing in Mexico Trust issues between government and people Money may end up with a corrupt political Not enough money to run an efficient court system No Encouraging corruption (slippery slope) Makes the law subjective Allows upper class to be beyond reproach

7 FedEx Branch visit in Mexico City Situation: Does culturalist ethics support your reimbursement claim to FedEx for two mordidas paid out-of-pocket? No Traffic ticket is a personal demeanor and the company should not pay for it. FCPA and Mexican government

8 FedEx New Recruits Situation: New FedEx recruits come to Mexico City. For mordidas advice, do you counsel a culturalist approach or advise to obey the books? Obey by the book Consistency and accountability: Not compromising the values of the company Kant: 1 st version of categorical imperative: universalized action. Mordidas would screw up Mexico.

9 Office Space in Mexico City: Accept the Cash Gift? Situation: You are opening a new FedEx office in Mexico City. Do you play by local rules and take a generous cash gift in exchange for a certain office space? Yes Location is of utmost priority because of the nature of the industry FedEx is in. We will be paying the money back in rent It is a gift (incentive). Win – win. Person offering the most money might have a better place.

10 Office Space in Mexico City: Conflicting Cash Bribes? Situation: You are opening a new FedEx office in Mexico City. You have two equal spaces and each owner offers you a bribe, one being larger. What do you do? Take the money. Given that both are giving a bribe, its time to make the most of the situation (enlightened egoism) More money shows that he had a great willingness to sacrifice for business.

11 My Common Virtues Prudence, Justice, Courage, Faith, Hope, Charity/Love, Respect, Fairness, and Honesty Shaping Social Institutions Religious institutions (The Catholic Church - Seven Virtues) Education (pre-high school) Family Friends Television

12 Applying Virtues in Mexico City Driving Violation Situation: You are caught by officer for driving a bit fast in Mexico City? What do you do? What virtues apply? Not pay mordidas: We are representing our company Dont want to be caught up in USA for your transgressions in a foreign nation Doing the right thing Virtues Integrity Honesty Fairness

13 FedEx New Recruits, Bribery, and Virtues Situation: You are training FedEx recruits in Mexico City. In dealing with bribery, what virtues do you instill in them and what previous life experiences could the recruits have to prepare them for the Mexican streets? Virtues Integrity Honesty Fairness Previous experience Not taking the easy way out by cheating on a test Halloween: Only taking one piece of candy i.e. doing the right thing when no one is watching Generally, taking the high road or not taking the easy route

14 The Mexico City Suburb Mayor and Virtues Situation: Could the mayors actions of canceling traffic tickets be considered part of the governments role in virtue ethics, and if so what virtues? What effect would this have in developing better practitioners of those virtues? Yes Virtues Instilled Honesty Fairness Obedience Integrity Self accountability Provides for a primary tasks of ethics: Provide education about those virtues (towards the self and family) Provide experience using those virtues to better represent society Allows the people to grow and develop together


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