Unbelievable – the Business Ethics of some companies

Tell the Truth v1
First posted Sept 22 on LinkedIn
Lying at the highest corporate level and the deepest depths is how I woke up this morning. I heard two stories, back to back on the radio of corporate lying, (violent lying) and cover ups. It made me sick and made me think of Mr. Taylor the President of Club Aluminum Products Company in 1932.

Here are the stories:

VW of America: at least 11 million cars were outfitted with special software to evade official emissions test. EPA and California officials said they ‘emit up to 40 times more pollution’ when not being tested. When confronted with this fact, the company admitted that the ‘test-evading software’ was knowing put in the cars. They did it on purpose. Unbelievable and unacceptable.

It is unacceptable what VW President and CEO of America, Michael Horn said: ‘our company was dishonest’ and in his personal words, we ‘totally screwed up’. What part? Screwed up the part about how this was kept a secret or the part where their corporate ethical compass is so jacked-up as to allow 11 million cars to be purposefully programmed to lie on the government emissions test?

Then I heard this story.

Peanut Butter Corp of America – For the first time in our nation’s history a Federal jury convicted a company executive on a food safety issue. Apparently with a lot of evidence, the President (and is brother) were found guilty of knowingly shipping peanut butter known to have salmonella in them. “Just ship it,” were the words from the President. What’s worse: fabricating lab tests and covering up lab reports showing salmonella in their products and shipping them anyway. Result: 9 people died and 700+ were sick with salmonella across 46 states 6 years ago. Unbelievable and unacceptable.

It is unacceptable what one of the lawyers for Parnell, ex-president of Peanut Butter Corp said: ‘I am sorry that people got sick from his peanut butter and died from his peanut butter. And he is too. He’s felt regret for a long time.’ Really? Are you kidding me? Unbelievable and unacceptable.

It feels like this fundamental lack of ethics is all around me today. I hope it is not growing. Good news is we have a simple antidote from Hebert J Taylor from 1932! Please, let me tell that story tomorrow.