Pez, there have been legal cases by shareholders that sue boards and/or CEOs because they don't take their Fiduciary Duty seriously. And they WIN. The law is structured that way. The law can't compel you to break the law (IANAL, but pretty sure that'd be stupid), but anything and everything else is A-OK to the limits of public reputation, and its impact on profits.While this may be standard practice, I'm talking about ethics and morality, not legality. There are many things which are legal, but that still grossly violate ethics and morality.
Secondly, as you've stated it, such an idea of fiduciary duty would compel people to break the law to fulfill "fiduciary duty". It's an absurd notion that businesses should exist for the sole purpose of making as much money as possible, above and beyond all other interests. It's quite arguable that most businesses do pursue money to that absurd degree, but that's because most people have bought into the idea that such is the ideal form of business. Not only do I challenge that notion, but I firmly reject it, morally and ethically. It should never be accepted, it should never be repeated, and any suggestion that is is inevitable should be shouted down with all the fervor the human race can muster. We are not doomed to be thieves, and we cannot allow ourselves to resign ourselves to institutionalized greed.
To be clear, I'm not advocating for this corporate attitude, I actually agree that businesses should be more than that. But that is the law as it is right now. Change the law if you want that to change, don't blame the people for following it.