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Chantal Rhodes

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Step 1: Evaluate the act using Kant’s categorical imperative 1. State your proposed act as a maxim:”I will take ZAR 620 000 000.00 (A) when I’ve done a year’s work (C) in order to get really, really rich (E).”2. Restate this maxim as a universal law:”All people (7 billion of them) will take ZAR 620 000 000.00 when they’ve done a year’s work in order to get really, really rich.”3. Ask whether your maxim is conceivable in a world ruled by the universal law: This maxim would be inconceivable. It would be a perfect world for everyone to live as equals and all have earned such a gross amount of money, but, this maxim reminds me of a reversed form of communism without any leaders. I believe our world survives efficiently with hierarchical structures in place, and I believe, should everyone earn this same, gross figure, these structures would eventually fall.4. Ask whether you would rationally act on your maxim in such a world: This module is based on Sustainability & Greed – I would like to think I would act rationally on this maxim on, but greed tends to get the better of us all and by the very definition of greed, it would cause anyone to act irrationally to keep it. This would not be sustainable in such a world. Step 2: Form an opinion

What would Kant probably have said about Whitey Basson (or you) earning ZAR 620,000,000.00? (You might want to do a bit of research into the nature of Whitey Basson’s 2010 earnings). First, Kant argues that to act in the morally right way, people must act from duty (deon). Second, Kant argued that it was not the consequences of actions that make them right or wrong but the motives of the person who carries out the action (Referenced from Wikipedia) – I think this question will not be conclusive to any answer as it could be answered for both sides of the coin. Yes we know that Whitey Basson did not immorally earn these funds by stealing, killing, etc and the consequences of his actions (rebuilding the various brands he was involved in and turning them into profitable businesses) which has led to countless jobs being created and maintained. But we don’t know what his true motivation was in doing this, was it to do the morally correct thing (ie: create jobs, give back to society)?

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