Principles of Responsible Commerce (COMM 101)
Case 2.3 (The Ford Pinto)
1. What moral issues does the Pinto case raise?
Moral issues that Ford Pinto case raises included producing dangerous products which are not safe to use it without informing the dangerous of the products to the public. In addition, lobbying the NHTSA to delay the safety measure of the products is also one of the moral issues that Ford Pinto case raises.
2. Suppose Ford officials were asked to justify their decision. What moral principles do you think they would invoke? Assess Ford’s handling of the Pinto from the perspective of each of the moral theories discussed in this ...view middle of the document...
(Shaw, Barry & Sansbury, 2009, pg64) From the case, Ford has always denied that the Pinto is unsafe compared with other cars of its type. But in fact Ford doesn’t say is that successful lobbying by it and its industry associates was responsible for delaying for seven years the adoption of any NHTSA crash standard.
4. Is cost-benefit analysis a legitimate tool? What role, if any, should it play in moral deliberation? Critically assess the example of cost-benefit analysis given in the case study. Is there anything unsatisfactory about it? Could it have been improve upon in some way?
Cost-benefit analysis is not an appropriate tool to be used in this case. This is because on cost-benefit reasoning, Ford had determined a monetary value on human life, which is against the ethical theories. It cannot be used moral deliberation. According to the Ford’s cost-benefit analysis, the cost outweighed the benefits, which is 137.5 million and 49.5 million respectively. In addition, Ford also determined the value of human life at $200725 per fatality. In my personal point of view, Ford should balance the calculation of cost-benefits analysis for everyone affected. In fact, the actual cost for not improving the safer gas tanks overweigh the benefit calculated and the reputation of the company is also affected. It could have been improve by considering the long term effects into the cost-benefit calculation.
5. Speculate about Kant’s response to the idea of placing a monetary value on a human life? Is doing so ever morally legitimate?
No. Kant’s 2nd categorical imperatives stated that we need to treat humanity always an end and never as a means. (Shaw, Barry & Sansbury, 2009, pg77) According to the case, Ford did not put a human’s life as the first priority; in fact, they placed a monetary value on a human’s life. They are using...