Transaction Under Each of the Five Ethical Theories
Juanita's behavior is clearly in contravention of a normative code of ethics since each of the world's religions proscribe bribery. The Bible, for instance, as does the Koran goes on in depth about the severity of perverting justice and bring officials or any one involved in the jurisprudence sector.
Utilitarianism is somewhat stickier in application. If Juanita's behavior provides the greatest amount of people in her environment with pleasure, she can, consequently, proceed. Utilitarianism is, however, not so clear in this situation for how do you define and set the limits to providing happiness t o the greatest amount of people. Who are the majority in this case? Are they the employees in Giantcorp and the bribed official (as well as recipients who profit from the bribe)? Are they competitors to the company? Are they the specific country? Or are they all those effected by Juanita's proffer of the bribe. The case becomes vague and fuzzy and utilitarianism, therefore, is no possible guideline.
Do unto others as you would wish done unto yourself. By bribing the individual, Juanita is clearly contravening Kantian ethics, since her company would not like competitors to continue their corrupt practices unhindered whilst they would be dissuaded from engaging in bribery.
Rawls social justice theory
Certain codes are necessary for people to function as a society. Clearly, therefore, bribery is prohibited since anarchy may likely prevail.
Since ethics are relative to the specific cultural and national mode, Juanita can clearly do what she wishes to do -- namely bribe. Few philosophers, however, advocate ethical relativism as an acceptable moral theory.
What Juanita, in essence, did was to bribe a government official in order to have telephone services installed in the office. All locations were under duress of a waiting list that was at least 6 months long. To bypass that list and receive faster service, Juanita informed Ramon, representative of Giantcorp Inc. that she paid the brother of a local government official $200,000 for painting the new offices. This connection then placed Giantcorp at the top of the list thus enabling them to receive services faster.
Although not outright bribery, Juanita's scheme has connotations of bribery and certainly violates the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977 ("FCPA") as delineated by its directives. The U.S. Act applies to all American business conducting business on foreign grounds and therefore Giantcorp, an American firm, is under equal jurisdiction of its implications and is expected to comply with each of its details.
The FCPA specifically delineates that it "prohibits a corrupt payments to foreign officials" note that it uses the words for the purpose of obtaining or keeping business.' this may well indicate that Juanita has violated the FCPA since her purpose in procuring the painter was not so much that he perform the painting job but more in terms of his connections: that he was the brother of the government official who could supply them with a telephone connection.
Evaluating the history of the FCPA, we see, too, that it was drawn up as a response to bribery and corruption that was perpetrated by high official and certain managers in various powerful industries. Not always were these maneuvers directly related to the matters. Sometimes they were peripheral, but they all achieved the desired result: the intended person (being bribed) accessing to the bribing individual. It was these actions that impelled Congress to structure and implement the FCPA as means to 'restore public confidence in the integrity of the American business system' (p2). Since America was concerned that they were operating at a disadvantage with foreign corporations continuing their corrupt practices unhindered, the United States managed to perused their major trading partners -- 38 companies -- to join them in ratifying similar legislation. To that end, therefore, Juanita has not only violated the FCPA Act particular to the United States but has also drawn Giantcorps into transgression of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
As stated on the layman's guide of the FCPA:
The anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA make it unlawful for a U.S. person, and certain foreign issuers of securities, to make a corrupt payment to a foreign official for the purpose of obtaining or retaining business for or with, or directing business to, any person (p. 2)
Juanita had made a 'corrupt payment" for the purpose of obtaining a specific service from his brother. There are five elements that go into the definition of making a corrupt payment. These involve: the individual who does it; corrupt intent; actual payment offered the individual; and the receipt himself -- or herself regardless of position as well as the business purpose test (i.e. intent of the bribe). Juanita violated all five indicating that she transgressed the FCPA anti-bribery act.
The consequences will be that Giantcorp will be fined up to $2,000,000 with Juanita and possibly Ramon, too, if he abets Juanita (as well as any other guilty involved party) being separately fined up to $100,000. The actual fine, as prescribed by the Alternative Fines Act, may be actually far steeper. Ramifications may also include the Attorney General, or the SEC, bringing a further civil action or fine against the company, as well as the company being barred from doing business with the Federal Government and treated consequences. Finally, private suit may also be brought by a competitor who may insist that Giantcorps, by bribing authority undercuts the competitor's business.
Laws and regulation that Frank must consider in starting his business and risks that he must consider to protect himself
Construction companies may be extremely lucrative, particularly so given that Frank has his movie start name to propel it. However, these ventures also involve a great deal of risk including, but not limited to lawsuits, construction errors, and exorbitant expense. Frank can protect himself by forming a Limited Liability Company (LLC) or a Subchapter S Corp (a Sub-S) that can also, simultaneously, provide him with tax advantages (EHow.com).
Frank is highly recommended to procure General Liability and Auto / rental equipment insurance in his company's name that will better protect him and his company against property damage and personal injury, as well as providing him with defense in any possible law suit that may arise from clients' operations. Incidentally, too, Frank may find it difficult to procure jobs without assurance of proper insurance and this includes Workers' Compensation Insurance, which is another resource that Frank will want to look into.
If Frank is considering extending his company's operation into the field of architectural designs, engineering designs, and calculations, he will also need to consider procuring Professional Liability (Errors and Omissions) insurance to better protect himself form law suits that may arise as a result of errors made in designs and calculations.
Frank will also need to procure the necessary professional and business licenses that he needs in order to conduct his business.
He may be required to provide a performance bond, particularly if he intends to work in the public sector. This bond will ensure that he completes the work in accordance with his contract. He will need to procure this bond from a surety company; therefore, in order to convince them of his merit, Frank will need to carefully and thoroughly train his company so that they qualify for the investigation performed by the surety company of their merit.
The U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration further orders Frank to regulate his environment in accordance with their safety directives (Werremeyer, n.d.). Frank will have to ascertain that his workplace is a safe and healthy environment and that all risks are curtailed and hazards eliminated (Employment Law Guide). In departments or tasks that may call for certain risks, Frank must, further, ascertain that employees are trained to deal with accompanying risks and that all protective equipment is provided. Again, this notice must be kept in a prominent place translated in the country's language were Frank to expand his enterprise elsewhere or to perform projects in foreign countries.
Frank, furthermore, has to consider social responsibility. In other words that his aims and objectives are to maximize profits for shareholders. Frank also has to consider the wider community who his actions will impact. These include clients, suppliers, employees, creditors, and the local community in his environment. Related to this is the fact that Frank has to carefully comply with all government and federal regulations that are associated with his business. This is connected to the principle of corporate responsibility affirming that Frank's social responsibility lies too in helping to solve social problems that his business may, in fact, have had little, if nothing to do with.
As of 2011, there have been various changes in taxation law as applied to construction companies and more expected in the future. Frank is advised to be proactive in discussing these tax law changes with his CPAs and lenders.