Boeing Back to Ethics 101

Oh, Boeing, not again. What's up with the execs at the world-class defense and aerospace giant? Two executives in jail over procurement scandals, two consecutive CEO's ousted in scandal, a 20-month ban on the company bidding on satellite launch contracts, and hints of more negative news to follow?

Harry Stonecipher was supposed to help to clean up the company after a string of missteps and bad corporate deed doing. But while he was doing just that, as we've all heard by now (whether we wanted to hear it or not), the CEO was engaged in his own little doings with a unnamed female exec.

But even in the wake of all the Boeing naughtiness, and in this post-Enron environment, did the board overreact to Stonecipher's consensual affair with the employee, who "neither reported directly to him nor received favorable treatment as a result of the affair," as
some suggest?

Decide for yourself. Weigh in on a CNBC Squawk Box poll on the firing. (When I took it, the results were fairly even: yes - 48%; no - 52%).

And here is Boeing's own Ethics and Business Conduct Web page. The page includes a toll-free ethics phone number for employees and others who may be interested in calling to express their concern about possible violations. (Which is apparently how Stonecipher got nailed: an anonymous tip.) Warning: the line may be busy.

Boeing CFO James Bell will serve as interim president and CEO.

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