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Make an Ethical Difference by Mark Pastin

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Chapter TwoNavigating the Minefield of Interests

“Self-interest speaks all sorts of tongues, and plays all sorts of roles, even that of disinterestedness.”

—Francois duc de la Rochefoucauld

When you work as an ethics advisor, you bump into smelly situations. You see organizations trying to hide ethical failures and leaders trying to escape blame. But, even in these situations, there is something to learn. One of the first things you learn is that the truth told about ethical situations is seldom the whole truth or even part of the truth. You are dealing with images of the truth formed by those with an interest in making the situation appear a certain way. In many cases, the interests trying to enforce their image of the ethical truth are powerful. ...

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