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Bad Ethics: Woman Steals a Million from Her Employer

There is a famous line from an Ernest Hemingway novel where one character asks a formerly rich man, “How did you lose your fortune?” Said the formerly rich man, “First, a little at a time, then all at once.” Bad ethics and poor choices can often work in the same way especially when it comes to fraud and theft.

The opportunity to steal may be there and at first an unethical person who feels he or she has the need to steal might dip their toe in the water to see if anyone notices, then it will get a little more bold with each occurrence.  This is the foundation of bad ethics.  At some point, the unethical person may get in so deep that repayment or reconsideration seems almost pointless. In fact, the unethical person may construct all kinds of justifications that are almost absurd in their logic. For example, “He’s such a rich so and so, he deserves to get some of it taken from him.”  Bad ethics almost always ends with distorted rationalizations.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in ethics and tagged , , ,

MSEIU: Bad Ethics in Play at Healthcare Union?

The investigation is ongoing, but it would appear that bad ethics are in play at the Michigan’s Service Employee International Union (MSEIU). The 9,000-member union has revealed that the union’s president, Marge Robinson and the union’s secretary-treasurer, Shalaya Bryant have been removed from office while officials try to determine where missing funds have gone.

The MSEIU is not revealing the amount of money that has gone missing but that fact alone should be cause enough for worry. If it were a few hundred bucks here and there, it is doubtful the major investigation along with “removal” would have occurred. All the union is revealing is that the missing amount is significant.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in ethics and tagged , , , ,

Independent Ethics Commission: So Much for Political Ethics in South Dakota

The voters of South Dakota voted for an independent ethics commission and it passed. As part of the package that went along with the commission were also provisions to put limits on campaign finance and lobbying access. An independent ethics

Mount Rushmore in South Dakota

commission? It was music to my ears.

The governor of the state, Gov. Dennis Daugaard (R) repealed the bill the voters of the state wanted! The politicians said that the voters were tricked into approving the ethics package which created the independent ethics commission. Here is the funny part: they were able to reject it under something called the “state of emergency,” provision. My ears are now ringing!

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Governmental Ethics and tagged , , ,

The Strange Ethics of Airline Security

It has happened yet again. Airline security has been breached, and it had nothing to do with the passengers. The latest case of a security breakdown has occurred overseas to an airline called JetStar.

The airline worker was caught on video as he was opening passenger bags in the luggage holds of an airliner that was about to depart. He was stealing the contents. The airline upon seeing the video vowed a full investigation.  This is airline security gone wrong – clearly an ethics breach.  A spokesperson said in part:

“We have launched an immediate investigation and will work with Airports of Thailand, our ground handler BAGS and our local security company to ensure the security of our customers’ property on-board our flights,” the statement continued.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in ethics and tagged , , , , , ,

Water: The Ethical Enemy of Gatorade?

As I start this post, I recall a World Health Organization (WHO) report that I read not long ago. Childhood obesity is skyrocketing around the world, and the population of children who are obese is 10 times greater than it was 40 years ago. Obesity is not harmless. Obese kids often become obese adults, and on that journey, they develop heart disease, joint problems and diabetes. It’s not a pretty picture.  Which brings us to an ethics question involving popular drinks like Gatorade.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in ethics and tagged , , , , ,

Why Do Smart People Make Bad Choices? Ethics Lapses and Emotional Triggers:

Human beings will have lapses of judgement – that’s just part of human nature.  But the question I often hear is why do smart people make bad choices?  And when they do what are the consequences?

In an article in Law.com it was reported that Assistant U.S. Attorney Mignonne Griffing of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Louisiana had a secret romance with a married FBI agent and failed to tell her bosses or defense counsel in two high-profile cases about her love interest.  Now, to be clear, when a person ceases to think from the rational part of their brain (yes this is fundamental brain science) they tend to rationalize their behavior and hence go to fight of flight mode of decision making.  That leads to consequences that are unpleasant at best and can be down right devastating.  Why do smart people make bad choices – most of the time there is an emotional trigger.  But before getting to that here’s the back story as reported in Law.com.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Ethical Behavior, ethics and tagged , , , ,

What’s the Government’s Game with Deflazacort

The drug deflazacort has been used for many years to treat a terrible disease called Duchenne muscular dystrophy. About 15,000 Americans suffer from this incurable disease. Deflazacort is a drug that has been shown to be much more effective than conventional steroids. If someone in your family has the disease, you can import the drug for about $1,200 per year. If you try to buy it here, it will run you about $89,000 per year. This is not a joke.

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Health, Health Care, Medical Ethics and tagged , , ,

Are Companies Doing Enough to Stop Phishing?

We are in the midst of an interesting ethical dilemma. As 2017 is unfolding, more and more of us are getting suckered into opening email attachments that contain malware.  It’s call phishing! Interestingly, the reason so many fall for this unethical scam is due to overconfidence!

The University of Texas at San Antonio has just released a study that essentially states that most of us believe we are smarter than cyber criminals and that we can out-think them. What might really amaze you is that Millennials are more likely than Gen-X or Baby Boomers to get scammed!

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Cyber Attack and tagged , , , ,

The Struggle of Love: Greenville County former Postmaster Guilty of Fraud!

Sharon D. Johnson, a writer based in Columbia, South Carolina, and her cohort, Patricia G. Sullivan, the former postmaster of Greenville County, had an idea that was so unethical and so ridiculous that naturally, a lot of good natured folks fell for it. In fact, the two women fleeced nearly $300,000 out of the community. They have pleaded guilty to committing wire fraud. If the judge passes the possible sentence that could be imposed in this case, Ms. Johnson will have plenty of time to write a decent book.  Meanwhile Amazon still has for sale – The Struggle of Love.

The Struggle of Love

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Fraud Pure and Simple and tagged , , , ,

Can the Wells Fargo Brand Recover from a Tarnished Ethical Lapse?

The Truth always comes out.  That is an easy statement to make and one that I have lived over and over – especially when it comes to dumb stupid choices that I’ve made that have come back to bite me.  Wells Fargo, as a company, can certainly identify with it’s share of “in the media” challenges since the truth of millions of phony accounts, fake bank card PIN’s and fake email accounts came to the surface.  It seemed that Wells Fargo’s culture of ethics was lacking.

Wells Fargo fired some 5,300 employees and has paid well over $185 million in penalties and fines – and of course, apologized.

With all the negative publicity which has created costs and consequences well beyond what most folks could envision for Wells Fargo – where do they go now moving forward?

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Posted by Chuck Gallagher in Banking Ethics and tagged , ,