There was a news article that said that Alan Greenspan was shocked at the failure of the credit markets. He was shocked because, he expected companies to self-regulate to ensure their continued survival and even growth.
Call me a skeptic, but I always believe and also have seen from experience that companies will only do the minimum required to get by. They don’t care about what impact their decisions are going to have in 5 or 10 years. After all, they have to look to their bottom lines and at the same time fight their competition. And they need their share prices to keep going up every quarter. So, they will usually do anything that they can to achieve that. Expecting companies to voluntarily define standards and adhere to them is is just foolish.
How many times in history have companies voluntarily honored ethical boundaries? Not many times, in my experience.