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5.0 out of 5 stars If You Read Only One Ethics Book, Jan. 26 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Do No Evil: Ethics with Applications to Economic Theory and Business (Hardcover)
Read this one. It's strong on foundational theory and on practical applications, an unusual combo for philosphers. Berumen's justification of capitalism is simply the best I have ever read, including anything done by Nozick, Friedman, Hayek, or Rand. Justifying capitalism as the default position of ethical principles, he also shows how those same rules serve to limit capitalist behavior. His section on the nature of competition and its ethical limits is excellent.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Well Written, April 9 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Do No Evil: Ethics with Applications to Economic Theory and Business (Hardcover)
Easy to read, great manner of expression, and well-stated theory. His analysis of property is excellent. The justification for capitalism is as powerful as Rand's, without the problem of an absolute right to property.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Common Sense Ethics, March 24 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Do No Evil: Ethics with Applications to Economic Theory and Business (Hardcover)
The best thing about this book is its common-sense approach to ethics. Berumen's ideas do not rely on mystical propositions, revelations, or other kinds of supernatural nonsense. He shows that one need not be god fearing or god believing to be ethical, and that, in fact, such ideas often get in the way of ethical behavior. This is the clearest exposition on ethics I have ever read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars What We Learned as Children, Nov. 27 2003
By A Customer
The author does an excellent job of providing a philsophical justification for the rules we learned as kids: don't hurt others. Sounds simple enough, but philosophers have strayed from common sense and spent a lot of time trying to justify that which cannot be justified, imposing their own ideals and theories of goodness on others. This book turns this on its head and shows what we can require is that we not harm others.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Philsophy Made Understandable, Oct. 24 2003
By A Customer
Do No Evil is written clearly and logically. A lot of philsophy is either too ethereal or too technical. Berumen starts by laying out the nature of ethics, then proceeds to show what we can and cannot justify as universal princples, and applies these ideas to economics and business. Along the way he shows that capitalism is by default the most moral system, but not something whose princples are invioble, for certain macro moral rules have precedence. Longish, but very good.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Do No Harm, Oct. 10 2003
By A Customer
Like the physician's oath, the author says the most important moral principle is to do no harm, at least, not without being able to will that what we undertake becomes a universal law covering all the same circumstances. This is an excellent book, especially when it comes to making complicated ideas easy-or easier-to understand. I really liked the section on fiduciary responsibility. The writing is clear and the subject is timely.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Best Bet, Sept. 6 2003
By A Customer
A great many modern ethics books are useless because they are too theoretical and don't say anything about what we should do, or, at the other extreme, they laden with hoary case studies with no philsophical justification of rules. Do No Evil strikes the right balance between theory and practice. The author writes clearly and humorously. He trashes moral relativism and the idea that religious belief and morality are the same thing. His treatment of both Hume and Kant is excellent, and he is both critical and respectful of them.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Morality is about Action, Sept. 4 2003
By A Customer
The author makes lots of valuable points... but the one I like best is that morality is not about believing things, it's about what we do (or don't do), how we act. Too many people think that simply having a compassionate feeling or believing in some religion is the same thing as being moral. But it's not. It's how we treat other beings, or as Bermen says, how we treat beings that can suffer. This is a good book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Evil is as Evil Does, Aug. 28 2003
By A Customer
Excellent survey of major theories. Also a practical guide to making moral judgments without relying on religious dogma. The book tells us why we should be moral and how to be moral. It points out that morality is about actions, not beliefs. If it were otherwise, lots more people would be saints than there are. I highly recommend this for free thinkers and religious types too.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Kant Redeux, Aug. 25 2003
By A Customer
The author is definitely an apostle of Kantianism. He also knows his history of philosophy. This is an excellent survey of ethics, generally, and it presents a cogent, logical approach to conduct. He gets rid of moral relativism and subjectivism early on in the discussion, and proceeds to outline a basis of universal rules based on what all rational creatures seek to avoid: death, disability, etc. He says that rationality does not require us to want to avoid these things for others, and that we must add the princple of impartiality for this. Berumen's section on fiduciary responsibility is very good, and while it is directed towards business issues, it has broader application. This book is well written.
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Do No Evil: Ethics with Applications to Economic Theory and Business
Do No Evil: Ethics with Applications to Economic Theory and Business by Michael E. Berumen (Hardcover - July 14 2003)
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