Where and when is the truth either important or paramount? I think the first conflict or question that struck me while listening to the retraction was, ” On whom should the true blame lie?” At first I was quite angry at Mike Daisy for the blatant lies. I wondered how he could present his story as a completely factual recollection. He seemed to me to be the quintessential reporter who uses deception and lies to create a story that would give him fame and fortune. Obviously any situation including this one is more complicated than some simple stereotype. So instead of condemning Mike Daisey outright, we must ask who else is to blame. As is stated, Ira Glass knew he should have checked the facts more thoroughly. He partially blames himself for the debacle created. So the question arises who should the blame rest on?
I am disgusted that Mike Daisey could lie to the public without explaining himself or the monologue further. He says he lied, or embellished, to draw sympathy or passion from the reader or listener. He wanted to create awareness and empathy for the factory workers in China. Do his ends justify the means? Would he be ethical under the Utilitarianism school of ethics? I believe its a little early to judge from that point of view. Perhaps if his piece truly led people to better the working conditions overseas, then his actions could be accepted if not condoned. I think perhaps the best standard of ethics would be those of the Deontology school of ethics. He wrote a piece for a journalist site or organization. His duty was to create a journalist piece. He deliberately misrepresented factual evidence which violated journalism standards. This could therefore be deemed an unethical action. However by this standard Ira Glass did not perform his duty in verifying that the monologue was completely accurate, however he tried to atone for this mistake with the retraction, while Mike Daisey seemed to simply explain his actions and say they should have been meant for theater and not journalism. This seems like a cop-out to me.
Other than that whole debacle, I think the actual working conditions are obviously not perfect. However I don’t truly know enough to give my own opinion on the how these things could or should change. I would first like to talk to workers myself to learn about their realistic working conditions. There is too much information available on the issue to be able to discern the cold, hard facts. I simply would need to see the conditions myself before I could give my opinion. As to my own feelings about my responsibilities as a consumer. I do not own any Apple products and therefore cannot comment on my feelings as an Apple consumer.