That is a big difference you know. Between could and should. It is between logic and humanity. Depending on what is the situation lah. But what premeditates the idea of what could be done and what should be done? If we add greed into the equation then it gets a bit more messed up.
Now decision making is not always an easy task. Some would prefer not to make decisions as most of the time it involves not only one person. We can take the most easiest of examples and apply this theory. If lets say you are a manager and you exclusively know what are the top management's decision whereby it is likely that either your staff will suffer a pay cut or being told to resign. What would be your choice?
Realize that it is up to you the manager to decide. If you are not willing to let off your staff then your department suffers a pay cut and that includes you. If you let off a few people, the one that stays have to do extra work but get to maintain their pay check. So here lies the truth of decision making.
Like it or not it is either you do something that you could do or should do. This here where your morals as a manager is determined. No one will know but you and your superiors. As far as the bosses are concerned it is either they lower their cost or suffer from a pay cut themselves which is not really what they are too keen about.
So the morally incorrect managers will lay off subordinates. Especially those fresh graduates that are too slow to learn and those senior executives that are deemed to be inefficient. Still it cant be entirely the manager's fault now is it? If the outcome is not favourable then generally all will be in shit load of trouble anyway.
Yet, any management book will not tell you what is right or wrong to do outright. It will only tell you the options of what one could do. So it could be said that morals are not instilled in those management books unless it is binded by law or regulations. Some say it is where religion comes in. Well yeah~ I suppose so but obviously that does not come into one's mind when their boss is staring at them in the face for answers. So it would be always to save one's arse first.
I could possibly term it as the arse burning effect. Where one could have done something instead of should have done something in order to save their hairy arses from the hell borne fire of their bosses.