Secularist Counter-Arguments Against Religion Ability To Give Added Meaning To Morality University Essay Example

Divine command theory was presented by John Calvin, St Augustine, and many other famous philosophers. Its followers argue that “ethical principles are simply the commands of God” (Pojman & Fieser, 2011, 188.4). The theory that appeared in the era of early Christianity and has been dramatically transformed since then has many followers in the modern world. Its supporters argue that religion adds meaning to morality; according to their claims, without the former, the latter loses much. In particular, they say that God ensures the victory of good over evil and equality between people. Moreover, God is the one who cares about humanity by giving everyone what he or she deserves. The main arguments for the added value that religion gives to morality are centered around these claims. However, there are some serious counter-arguments, some of which will be discussed below.

The first secularist counter-argument is related to the fact that people have done much evil under the guise of religion. The phenomenon of religious violence, one of the most striking manifestations of which is the Crusades in the 11th-15th centuries, still plays a vital role in modern society. One of its examples is Jihad, a concept by which Islamic extremists justify their terrorist acts. Islamic terrorism is a severe social problem that causes much destruction and loss of life around the world.

The phenomenon of religious violence is connected with another compelling argument against the idea that religion gives additional meaning to morality. Religious morality “involves a moral condemnation by the in-group toward dissenters from the out-group” (Pojman & Fieser, 2011, 202.4), thereby leading to intolerance. This fact can be illustrated by several examples, only a few of which are presented above. Besides, other secularist counter-arguments deny the positive influence of religion on morality. However, the two arguments presented in this essay are most relevant in the context of modern society. In my opinion, they prove the fact that the influence of religion on morality is at least contradictory, if not negative.

Reference

Pojman, L., & Fieser, J. (2011). Ethics: Discovering Right and Wrong. Cengage Advantage Books.

Supply Chain Management In The Business World

Supply chain management is one of the most important twentieth-century innovations in the business world. Practically, it is the managing of a “network of interconnected businesses involved in the ultimate provision of product and service packages required by end customers” (Cooper et al., 7).

In other words, it takes care of all the transporting, storing and distributing of what the firm considers to be raw materials. It also does the inventory of the work which is in progress and of the final goods, the finished products. Practically it takes a product from its conception, design until it is delivered to the market for the consumers.

Yet another way of explaining the definition is given from the Simchi-Levi brothers, who see it as the “design, planning, execution, control, and monitoring of supply chain activities with the objective of creating net value, building a competitive infrastructure, leveraging worldwide logistics, synchronizing supply with demand, and measuring performance globally” (Simchi-Levi et al., 4). Here one major ethical problem is that this way, supply chain management is a sort of controlling system for all the other processes and departments in the organization, company.

This is especially true for a company that makes the moving of goods and personal effects of people its primary product, like TNT Global Logistics. This is why supply chain management has to monitor the working of all the other departments of a firm. But who controls supply chain management? It is a sort of ‘all encompassing’ department or managing technique, on which no other department in the business firm can control. Legally, it means that this department has some competencies more extended than any other in the company.

This is inevitable since it has to control the ongoing process of design, production and delivery of products. It must have the power to intervene in the process if something is going wrong or not as planned. The metrics and measures are very important for the supply chain management. Those are the tools by which it ‘measures performance’ (Ketchen & Hult, 24). The integrated measures are the ones included in the processes of supply management. These metrics serve as indicators to demonstrate how is going the process, at least on the principal tenants. For TNT, such integrated measures, or metrics, can be the timing of reaction for the pickup of the goods from the moment a client informs he/she wants to deliver a package. Another integrated metric would be the timing of delivery, the schedule of the goods. If they are delivered within the estimated time, the process is going as it should.

But there are also external metrics that are used as indicators for performance. Many authors consider customer satisfaction to be the most important of these indicators (Mentzer, 56). The above mentioned internal metrics could read all positive, but still, something may not be all right in the process. Customer satisfaction will show this.

And for companies like TNT, customer satisfaction is crucial. By measuring the ‘output’ to customers, we can have a clearer picture of the company’s financial health. Measuring output for TNT means measuring customer satisfaction. If something is going wrong, then an evaluation or resource usage is needed to assess what is going wrong. And a final external metric for the health of the company would be its flexibility to respond and adapt to new and changing situations.

Works Cited

Cooper, Michael., Lambert, Daniel & Pagh, John. “Supply Chain Management: More Than a New Name for Logistics”. The International Journal of Logistics Management, Vol 8, Iss 1, 1997.

Ketchen Jr., Greg & Hult, Tim. “Bridging organization theory and supply chain management: The case of best value supply chains”. Journal of Operations Management, 25(2), 2006.

Mentzer, Javier. “Defining Supply Chain Management”, Journal of Business Logistics, Vol. 22, No. 2, 2001.

Simchi-Levi Daniel. Simchi-levi, Elvis. Designing and Managing the Supply Chain, 3rd edition. Canada: Mcgraw Hill, 2007.

ZZZZ Best Co. Case Study: Key Events And Key Auditing Topics

Key events surrounding the case

Barry Minkow learned the carpet-cleaning business from his mother and proceeded to establish his own company, ZZZZ Best Co., at the tender age of 16. However, the capital was a major issue and he soon started undertaking credit card forgeries alongside other frauds that provided his initial capital. As a charismatic individual, he was able to make friends with many professionals including Tom Padgett who was a claims adjuster. With Tom’s services, he was now able to fraudulently acquire insurance restoration contracts that immensely boosted his carpet business.

Before the company went public, George Greenspan conducted an audit but did not fully inspect the restoration contracts. This gave the company a clean sheet to go public and was able to acquire massive funding from the public. The overnight success saw Minkow become famous with his company receiving positive reviews from investment analysts among other professionals. Greenspan was dropped and in his place, Ernst & Whinney was contracted as ZZZZ Best audit firm. Even though the latter failed to contact the former about the authenticity of the restoration contracts, It went ahead to visit one of the sites that were identified in the contract which the sly Minkow stage-managed the events by hiring a third party building leading to Ernst & Whinney’s innocent approval.

But after a series of events related to Minkow’s integrity, Ernst & Whinney resigned especially after the company released a false statement of its earnings. It however failed to give reasons for its decision as is required and only did so after the allocated time had expired exposing the company’s fraudulent activities. But by this time, ZZZZ Best had already filed for bankruptcy protection that shielded it from creditors. Ernst & Whinney was accused of overlooking gross errors in conducting audits for which it was absolved from any wrongdoing as it only issued a review but not opinion that banks utilized in issuing loans.

The key auditing topics

The ZZZZ Best case is one of the most complex accounting frauds to have been undertaken as it managed to bypass even the watchful and credible Security Exchange Council. However, there are still some auditing issues that can be identified from the case.

The independence of Tom Padgett is at stake and a clash of interests can be identified when he knowingly seeks his interests at the expense of issuing true opinion of ZZZZ Best restoration contracts. He also acted unethically more so in his involvement in misrepresenting banks and other creditors that relied on his opinion to advance credit to the company.

The first auditor, George Greenspan, failed to comply with standards as well as to objectively conduct audits of ZZZZ Best. He failed to obtain sufficient evidence concerning the authenticity of restoration contracts that could have prevented the company from going public and swindling public investors.

Ernst & Whinney also did not comply with standards by its failure to extensively consult the former auditor after it was contracted. It failed in its legal obligations as an audit firm by not giving reasons for its decision to quit as it is required by law. It also failed on its obligations to the public by only reviewing and not issuing an opinion on the firm’s status despite having been the official auditor. Furthermore, had it raised the flag on ZZZZ Best integrity, it could have averted losses from those investors that purchased stocks after it had been made aware of the company’s fraudulent conduct just before filing for bankruptcy. This was also against the exemptions to rule on confidentiality that requires audit firms not to seek clients’ consent in publicizing information concerning their professional malpractices.

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