Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp 61–66 | Cite as

When two ‘wrongs’ make a right: An essay on business ethics

  • Gregory S. Kavka


Sometimes two wrongs do make a right. That is, others' violations of moral rules may make it permissible for one to also violate these rules, to avoid being unfairly disadvantaged. This claim, originally advanced by Hobbes, is applied to three cases in business. It is suggested that the claim is one source of scepticism concerning business ethics. I argue, however, that the conditions under which business competitors' violations of moral rules would render one's own violations permissible are quite restricted. Hence, the observation that two wrongs may make a right does not give people a broad warrant for ignoring moral standards in their business activities.


Economic Growth Business Ethic Business Activity Moral Standard Moral Rule 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Copyright information

© Random House, Inc. 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gregory S. Kavka

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations