Consequentialism notes


Thus, rule utilitarianism could address the fourth and fifth objections mentioned above by using the utility principle to justify rules establishing human rights and the universal prohibition of certain harms.

For example, Philippa Foot argues that consequences in themselves have no ethical content, unless it has been provided by a virtue such as benevolence.

To the extent that one ought often to ignore the rules of morality, prudence, and aesthetics, and act simply on the basis of which action is most choice-worthy according to the theory of practical reason overall, Mill is, in the end, pulled towards something which comes to resemble an act-utilitarianism position Turner Imagine a lake with a thousand identical fish farms owned by a thousand competing companies.

Now everyone is back using filters again, except Mike. For example, in general, torture has terrible consequences.

Philosophy Notes: Vallentyne, “Consequentialism”

In either case, the principle defines the moral right in terms of an objective, material good. Our sense of equality revolts at such an idea. It is worth emphasizing that in no case does Mill think that the ultimately inductive nature of the sciences—whether physical, mathematical, or social—precludes the deductive organization and practice of the science Ryan Since the greatest good for the greatest number is described in aggregate terms, that good may be achieved under conditions that are harmful to some, so long as that harm is balanced by a greater good.

Some Problems with Consequentialism

Williams argues that this demands too much of moral agents—since he claims consequentialism demands that they be willing to sacrifice any and all personal projects and commitments in any given circumstance in order to pursue the most beneficent course of action possible.

As such, they are subject to causal laws in just the same manner as the rest of natural world—empirical study of the mind, Mill holds, reveals that it is governed by the laws of associationistic psychology.

Induction could have been self-undermining—its success as a form of reasoning about the world, established on its own terms, is not trivial. These could be the classical virtues— couragetemperancejusticeand wisdom —that promoted the Greek ideal of man as the "rational animal", or the theological virtues— faithhopeand love —that distinguished the Christian ideal of man as a being created in the image of God.

Moral rules play a role in guiding and evaluating action, to be sure, but so do rules of aesthetics and prudence: Sure seems that way. Hard work and intelligence are contributory factors to success, but depending on the way you phrase the question, you find you need other factors to explain between one-half and nine-tenths of the difference in success within the United States; within the world at large the numbers are much higher.

Auguste Comte and Positivism, X: McNaughton and Rawling, up next time, do the same for deontology.

You Kant Dismiss Universalizability

But the implications of holding a general premise are more clearly displayed by the syllogistic reasoning, and this, in certain instances, may cause us to re-evaluate our commitment to that premise. Most people would say that the lie is justified.

Historically, hedonistic utilitarianism is the paradigmatic example of a consequentialist moral theory. As he points out, a reduction of self to sensations cannot be wholly satisfactory, because a sense of the self enters into many sensations as a constituent part. Mill idolized Harriet, and credited her with virtual co-authorship of many of his works.

For instance, according to Kant, lying is always wrong because we cannot will it as a universal maxim that lying is okay. This too may offer some explanation of what Mill means by claiming that, for instance, virtue can become part of our happiness.

Such possibilities cast doubt on the principle that every trade that can be voluntarily made should be voluntarily made. But it may not be so simple. Vallentyne, who we cover this week, describes and defends consequentialism.

The Holmes-Rahe Stress Scale, a measure of the comparative stress level of different life events, puts being fired at 47 units, worse than the death of a close friend and nearly as bad as a jail term.

A possible inference is, that one can not be blamed for mistaken judgments if the motivation was to do good. A woman raised in Ecuador uses a mind forged by Ecuador to make the decision, and chooses Christianity. The utilitarianism of John Stuart Mill is one of the most influential forms of consequentialist ethics.

G. E. M. Anscombe (1919—2001)

Act utilitarianism Act utilitarianism is a subset of act consequentialism. Some, like Henry Sidgwickargue that a certain degree of egoism promotes the general welfare of society for two reasons: Laborers are coerced to work for the company by juntas funded by the corporation, and are shot or tortured if they refuse.

Maybe, but left to their own devices, cod fishermen never implemented or recommended that scheme. We do not wish to have the fruits of our labor stolen from us. It is not, of course, a proof in the traditional sense of being a logical deduction of the principle of utility.

Just Desserts and Social Mobility 5.[This is a repost of the Non-Libertarian FAQ (aka “Why I Hate Your Freedom”), which I wrote about five years ago and which used to be hosted on my website.

I. Like most right-thinking people, I’d always found Immanuel Kant kind of silly. He was the standard-bearer for naive deontology, the “rules are rules, so follow them.

I am not a philosopher. In fact, the two courses I took on philosophy in college (Honors courses on ancient Greek ethics and modern ethics) were the two courses where.

Introduction to Consequentialism All Consequentialist theories of ethics share this common feature, they all maintain that the rightness or wrongness of an action is determined by the consequences which follow from the act. If good consequences follow, then the action is determined to be 'good'.

Consequentialism is the class of normative ethical theories holding that the consequences of one's conduct are the ultimate basis for any judgment about the rightness or wrongness of that conduct. Thus, from a consequentialist standpoint, a morally right act (or omission from acting) is one that will produce a good outcome, or consequence.

A summary of Critique of Practical Reason and Groundwork for the Metaphysic of Morals in 's Immanuel Kant (–).

Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of Immanuel Kant (–) and what it means.

Notes on Utilitarianism

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Consequentialism notes
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