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The possible utilitarian benefits of building Caltex plant versus violations of moral rights and justice.
The possible utilitarian benefits of building Caltex plant in 1977 in South Africa were not more important than the possible violations of moral rights and justice that were involved. The benefits of continued presence of Caltex as claimed by the management were the company commitment to improving the economic and working conditions of the companies black employees. The company management argued that by continuing to be present in South Africa, didn’t imply that the company had endorsed the South African apartheid policies that ensured total discrimination against blacks. The company having adopted the code of conduct claimed that it had affirmed six principles that were of benefit to the South African black employees. The principles were as included the non segregation of races in all eating, comfort and work facilities, the upholding of equal and fair employment practices for all employees, The principle of equal pay for all employees, the initiating and development of training programs to the black employees. Lastly, the increasing of the number blacks in the management and supervisory position and the improving of the living conditions of workers outside the working environment. Having adopted the code of conduct with the above principles Caltex claimed that it was committed to improving the economic position of its workers. Closely looking at the principles adopted by the company the benefits accruing to south African black community were not as much since the south African government had clearly stated that principle would operate within the existing South African working conditions that is within the south African laws . For examples South African laws requiring separate facilities and those that prohibit blacks from being apprentice were still in place. Thus even the adoption of these principles by Caltex was not any help in ending the arptheid movement. Caltex management had also claimed that the company was improving the economic position of the worker but that was a smaller benefit compared to what would be achieved towards ending racial discrimination in South Africa if the company discontinued its business in South Africa. The company was improving the economic live of its workers only while the huge black South African community was suffering in the pool of racial discrimination. The issue was that was to be solved was not simply adoption of the principles that improved working conditions of the workers nor was the issue improving of the economic conditions of black South Africans. The issue that needed to be solved urgently in South Africa and that which would be of benefit to the whole of black community was giving the blacks political power. The slightly higher wages and the training programs to the black African were as important if they didn’t lead to a basic social change that would benefit the black community as whole.
The company was played a big role in maintain the racist government in south Africa bay paying taxes, transfer of technology, the effect of the U.S foreign policy and provision of strategic to the racist government. Thus the company was in a position to control the government so as to make steps towards ending racism. The issue in South Africa in short was not simply improving the wages and working conditions of the worker in just in a single company but the issue was human rights being trampled on immensely. The South African government was denying the blacks their basic rights and the continued presence of American companies as huge as Caltex was a support of the government policies of discrimination by maintaining the government. if a company like Caltex stopped paying the huge taxes and providing strategic products to the racist government then the government in a fix would make some steps even if little towards ending the racial discrimination. Thus the few utilitarian benefits in regard to improving the economy of the employees were far much outweighed by the need for a basic social change that would lead to black political power and upholding of the human rights of the blacks in south Africa.
Voting in support or against the resolutions
If I was a shareholder of Texaco or the standard oil companies I would vote in support the three resolutions that included asking Caltex to terminate its operations in South Africa, asking Caltex not to sell to the military or the police of South Africa and also asking Caltex to implement the Tutu rules. All these resolutions would change the lives of the black community against the racial discrimination that trampled on their human rights in my view. I would also vote in support despite the huge profits that Caltex was making by its presence in South Africa and the benefits that would thus accrue to me as a shareholder because I would look at the moral responsibility weighing on me. I would look at the human rights that were being denied to the black South Africans only for the skin color and also at what my vote could do to change the life of these black people. Being a businessperson of course I would be concern with the profits but I would encourage that the c.............
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