Ethical issue

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Current ethical issue analysis

Due to the sheer size of its market and exposure, the juggernaut that is Wal-Mart faces a multitude of ethical issues of a wide variety in today’s market. The company touts having three main points in its code of ethics: respect for the individual, service to the customer, and striving for excellence. It is estimated that Wal-Mart is the largest U.S. importer of Chinese products, and that Chinese manufactured goods actually make up around 70% of the company’s total product base. If you were to ask a Chinese laborer about these three imperative points in the company’s ethical policy however, they would likely tell you something quite the opposite. While asset acquisition at the lowest possible price available is an important part of any successful goods distributor, the way in which Wal-Mart ensures that it gets the lowest possible price is unethical in and of itself. In recent years for instance sweatshop style working conditions have been revealed, with workers working upwards of 80 hours per week for under 15 cents an hour, and even having to live in dorm-like facilities in the factory. On top of this, Walmart demands that the prices of their imported goods decreases each year, or they threaten to cut off the supplier. This ethical dilemma was just barely blooming when Sam Walton was alive, as about 6-10% of Walmart’s goods were coming from China, but after his death, the importation of Chinese products at dirt cheap prices skyrocketed, and the conditions in China steadily declined, which are both reflective of each of the subsequent CEOs’ ethical philosophies. Right off, I think it becomes apparent that their business decision making philosophies use one or both theology and egoism. The CEO and executives find that such otherwise unacceptable working conditions are justified when the company as a whole takes in such high profits, and even if they do so at the expense of the health Chinese people, and other foreign...
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