"Why is it wrong for Volkswagen to lie (if it did lie) about whether its cars meet emission standards, but uncontroversial for HBO to lie (if it is lying) about whether Jon Snow is dead?
Everyone knows what Volkswagen is accused of. If you’re puzzled by the reference to Jon Snow, we’ll get to him in a minute. But first, let me tell a brief story.
Some years ago, at a business ethics seminar, I heard a retired businessman -- let’s call him Ed the Executive -- explain how a large corporation had once tasked him with shutting down a major division, but had also instructed him to deny that he was there for that purpose. If asked by anyone -- workers, suppliers, customers -- whether the division would close, he was to say no. Not refuse to comment. Actually lie."
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