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The concept of duty implies the need to overcome some obstacle in order to act, and it is foolish to speak of God as having to overcome any obstacles whatever. To explain further the notion of duty, Kant uses as an example a merchant who does not overcharge an inexperienced customer. This decision is completely in accord with duty. Assume, though that the merchant avoids overcharging so that he can give all his customers the same price in order to keep them coming to him for merchandise. He does this because it is to his advantage to do it. It is, in fact, just good business. He does not do it because there is a moral principle involved, though the result is the same as if he were doing it from duty. ecause the merchant is not acting from moral duty, however, his action cannot be considered a moral action.…… [Read More]
human life be more valuable than another? William Godwin's thought experiment concerning Fenelon and his valet is intended to argue precisely this point. Godwin proposed a burning building with two people in it, Fenelon and his servant. Godwin argues "that life ought to be preferred which will be most conducive to the general good" and concludes that the moralist who would write the "immortal Telemachus" is therefore more valuable than the domestic servant. Even though students today are unlikely to have heard of Fenelon or share Godwin's high estimation of him, the thought experiment still stands. I propose, however, that applying the moral philosophy of Kant to Godwin's problem will demonstrate that Godwin's ethical sense here is no more infallible than his sense of Fenelon's literary immortality.
Kant's ethical theory is primarily concerned with the motivations for performing a moral action, not with the effects or consequences that the action…… [Read More]
Utilitarianism and Categorical Imperatives
A Comparison of the Theories of Utilitarianism and Categorical Imperatives
The principles of Utilitarianism and Categorical Imperatives contradict each other on many fronts. Both provide a rational for making moral decisions, both have benefits and flaws. A compelling argument can be made for each. From my perspective the principal's of Kant exemplify a more ethical way to conduct life.
Utilitarianism as a specific school of thought is generally credited to Jeremy Bentham, who outlined this theory in his 1789 work, Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation. Bentham believed pain and pleasure were the only fundamental values in the world and from this belief he developed his rule of utility, the good is whatever brings the greatest happiness to the greatest number of people. This is known as Act Utilitarianism. An act is to be preferred to its alternatives according to the extent of…… [Read More]
There is a need to clearly point out that the two elements are never synonymous.
The process of perfecting our own natural state in the Kantian view implies that we are actually in the process of attempting to cultivate "the crude dispositions of [our] nature, by which the animal is first raised into the human being" (Kant 1996b).In order to achieve this, Kant suggests that one is required to effectively cultivate their capacities in various personal levels and be respectful to the end of one's existence. Therefore an individual has a choice as to which of their powers they can cultivate. This is because that is where the true end actually lies.
The moral perception therefore is made up of two main commands:
Be holy and Be perfect
The very first one 'be holy" is geared towards the description of the purity of an individual's moral self-perfection. It however demands…… [Read More]
The Bible also calls for the application of human free will to morality, as does Kant. Stories in the Bible reveal how human actors either obey or disobey the moral codes prescribed to them by the Biblical authorities, namely God. When God issues a "thou shalt," that moral law is ensconced. The person has free will, and therefore can be tricked by a malicious force symbolized by Satan. It is necessary to have free will for the categorical imperative to work, which is why there is the problem between good and evil in the first place. If it were easy for human beings to always do good, then Kant would have not had the impetus to write Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals. There would be an imperative to act, but it would not be categorical. Free will empowers the human being to make morally righteous choices, in accordance with…… [Read More]
Kant's universal principle of right and categorical imperative has yielded a heated debate on whether there is relationship between the two (UPR and CI). The debate arises on the question, "Can Kant's "universal principle of right" be derived from his "categorical imperative?" Many authors have presented their view, against and supporting. This debate is significant since it helps in realizing the impact of the juridical law on the individuals in the society. It helps in determining whether personal self-interest, concerning moral principles, would affect the action of the judicial law.
Kant intends to derive universal principle right from the categorical imperative. Kant explains that the categorical imperative represents an unconditional moral law that applies to all rational being and is independent of any personal motive or desire (Kant, 229). Further, Kant describes universal principle of right within the context of "every action is right in response to the…… [Read More]
solving throughout this term.
Solve the dilemma using Kant's ethics (Categorical Imperative).
Solve the dilemma using any other method we have discussed to date (with which you agree.)
State which resolution (Kant's or the other one you chose) you prefer and why.
Britain's lush canopy tree is in danger of extermination due to axe-happy people preoccupying themselves with chopping it down. eason includes the facts that they cause shedding of fruit at unsuspecting passersby heads; that they drop conkers, and leaves that make pavements slippery, as well as that they sink roots under houses and pavements. In their place, British architecturalists grow the so-called lollipop trees which are not only smaller, more compact varieties with shorter root systems, but also supposedly cheaper to grow. However, these trees do not provide the same advantages of the canopy ones which "clean air, capturing molecules of pollution; absorb CO2 while giving off oxygen;…… [Read More]
It is not too much of a stretch to extend the moral choice to the question of following through on commitments in general. If everyone abandoned their commitments when circumstances changed, the concept of commitment would become nonsensical, resulting in a logical inconsistency. Therefore, according to Kant, Ben and Sarah would be bound by a categorical imperative to continue paying their mortgage if they are able.
The situation is more complex, however, than Kant's moral system addresses. When applying the universal law test, we find that Ben and Sarah are equally bound to their other commitments, including their commitments to themselves and their child. The only way to find their correct moral path in the Kantian sense would be for them to intend to follow through on all of their commitments, and to do everything in their power to follow that intention, even if they are not ultimately able to.…… [Read More]
However, although utilitarianism traditionally promotes the greatest good for the greatest number, in actuality, in his second chapter on Utilitarianism, Mill criticizes Kant's categorical imperative as the same as utilitarianism since it involves calculating the good or bad consequences of an action to determine the morality of that action. Mill argues that his task is to demonstrate this highest principle inductively. Instead, he argues that actions are right in proportion, as they tend to promote happiness; wrong as they tend to produce the reverse of happiness. (IEP, 2001) but it thus also could be argued from Mill's theory, that the use of the patients harms the hospital as well as the patients, and provides only shady future benefits, while does secure and sure harm to human happiness in the here and now, by turning humans into guinea pigs. Thus, from both moral perspectives of Kant and Mill, the actions of…… [Read More]
Utilitarianism, Kant's categorical imperative, virtue ethics, and Confucianism
One of the most intuitive ethical philosophies is that of utilitarianism, an ethical ideal that suggests that ethical decisions should be made based upon what decisions will achieve the greatest good for the greatest number of people. When we weigh decisions based upon their costs and benefits, we are taking a kind of utilitarian approach to decision-making (Ethics 5: Utilitarianism, 2008). Utilitarianism attempts to rationally calculate what will maximize pleasure and minimize pain: it does not view any action as inherently good or bad but rather focuses on the practical consequences of our decisions. It seeks to maximize utility, whether this is happiness for the individual or profit for a business. One of the obvious detriments of utilitarian theory is that many decisions often have a very negative impact upon a minority of people. Another problem is defining what…… [Read More]
free will and whether we can ever attain individuality, or whether lack of free will constrains us from ever achieving the individuality that we wish to achieve.
On the one hand, we believe that we are gifted with the ability to choose happiness and liberty would we so wish and create ourselves into the individuals that we believe is necessary for our life's liberty and contentment. On the other hand, certain aspects seem beyond our control. ome are born handicapped and others in ghetto-like poverty. till others are born in rigid, fundamentalist type backgrounds where they are indoctrinated and socialized in a certain type of thinking that causes them to perceive aspects in a certain way, to judges, a and act accordingly. The question can be extended to any and all, civilizations without going to the extremes of turning to religious or socialist regimes for illustration. After all, we all…… [Read More]
Living authentically "as if" my actions had the force of reason strikes me as very similar to living in deliberate opposition to reason -- which, in a contemporary milieu, often entails structuring a life according to personal experience or even faith. In an era in which the irrational is widely accepted and even embraced -- through the thought of Freud, Kierkegaard, and others in addition to Nietzsche himself -- Kant's confidence in the a priori categories of reason as self-evident universal organizing principles seems innocent at best.
Finally, in a society that jealously protects the perspective of the individual, Kant's appeal to universal or even "categorical" patterns of thought and morality is difficult to integrate into everyday life. If society reserves judgment on moral questions, then how can we ascribe objective force to our own maxims for a just life? Perhaps ironically, the best way to live under such circumstances…… [Read More]
This might or might not mean that a business owner would adhere to generally accepted laws and codes. I do not think that I would like to live in such a world, since contradictions might too easily arise. Instead, I would add an extra element to the categorical imperative suggested by Kant.
De Waal's theory adds a dimension to Kant's categorical imperative. He claims that even animals have a culture of compassion and reciprocity, which is echoed in the human race. According to this theory, the rational mind is not the sole element in human decision making, but emotions such as empathy and compassion also play a role. One might therefore modify the maxim by saying I would maximize my profits within reasonable limits of empathy and reciprocity. In other words, as a business owner, I would empathize with the financial plight of my workers by paying them according to…… [Read More]
Since a hypothetical imperative represents one of many possibilities that are only means to an end, they cannot be objectively necessary, and therefore do not have the same command over human behavior as a categorical imperative. As Kant notes, commands are laws that we must obey, even when they contradict our inclinations (27).
If we treat others as a means to an end, then we use them in service of another goal. However, if we treat others as an end in themselves, then we respect them without regard to any other goals or ends. To treat someone as a means to an end is to make them less important than some end result, whereas to treat someone as an end in themselves makes them the final and most important consideration. Slavery may be the most offensive example of using others as a means to an end, but there are…… [Read More]
expert security software programmer works top secret national government country Zulu.
There is very little question as to what action a strict deontologist would do in the scenario for this assignment -- he or she would unequivocally adhere to his or her duty. The more pressing question, of course, revolves around just where that duty lies. For a deontologist, that duty would lie with the job at hand and its responsibilities. As one who took an oath to only program software in accordance to the company that he or she works for -- which is essentially operating as an extension of the government that wishes the programmer to 'push the button' and destroy millions of innocent lives in World War II -- it would strongly appear that such an individuals would consider it his or her duty to effectively start World War III.
Moreover, it is interesting to note that…… [Read More]
George simply paying attention. It a long drive back home family's winter vacation, Interstate coming downtown area city. His wife front. In backseat young daughter younger brother, feeling sick home.ID
George's dilemma: Kant vs. consequentialism (utilitarianism)
According to Kant's categorical imperative, the ethical actor must behave as if he is setting a law for all time, not merely dealing with the specifics of every ethical situation. Taking a bribe is wrong, and factors such as George's weariness, his son's illness, and other situational factors do not make the taking of the bribe less immoral. The categorical imperative is categorical because there are no conditions limiting its expression. It is stated by Kant: "I ought never to act except in such a way that I could also will that my maxim should become a universal law' (4:402). This is the principle which motivates a good will, and which Kant holds to…… [Read More]
For example if a person feels that life without wealth is meaningless, he might decide that if he ever becomes poor, he would become a hermit and quit social life. This would be his maxim and thus a principle by which he must abide when such a situation arises. Kant knew that only rational being could be expected to have a maxim of morality. 'Everything in nature, works in accordance with laws. Only a rational being has the power to act in accordance with his idea of laws, that is, in accordance with principles.' (Gr, 412)
However a person who has a maxim is not allowed acting on it unless he decides that it is something he would want for everyone. Kant argues that unless a person wants to attach universality to this maxim, it cannot be considered a correct principle or a moral one. this is known as the…… [Read More]
In Cultural Ethical elativism, Universalism, Absolutism (2005), it was mentioned that Kant said that people engage a particular space in creation and morality can be figured out in one supreme directive of reason or imperative that all responsibilities and duties drawn from; Kant described an imperative as any intention which asserts a particular act or inaction to be compulsory; a hypothetical imperative requires action in a particular condition: "if I wish to quench my thirst, I must drink something;" -- a categorical imperative, in contrast, indicates an absolute, unconditional obligation that states its influence in all conditions, both necessary as well as justified as an end in itself; and it is most recognized in its first expression: "Act only according to that maxim whereby you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law."
In Cultural Ethical elativism, Universalism, Absolutism (2005), it was stated that Kant…… [Read More]
Off-duty time does not extend the 14-hour period.
15-Hour on-Duty Limit
May not drive after having been on duty for 15 hours, following 8 consecutive hours off duty. Off-duty time is not included in the 15-hour period.
60/70-Hour on-Duty Limit
May not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days. A driver may restart a 7/8 consecutive day period after taking 34 or more consecutive hours off duty.
60/70-Hour on-Duty Limit
May not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days.
Sleeper Berth Provision
Drivers using the sleeper berth provision must take at least 8 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth, plus a separate 2 consecutive hours either in the sleeper berth, off duty, or any combination of the two.
Sleeper Berth Provision
Drivers using a sleeper berth must take at least 8 hours in the sleeper berth, and may split the sleeper-berth time into two…… [Read More]
It is learned and is the outcome of both teaching and practice and the force of habit.
Discuss Aristotle's doctrine of the mean
The mean is the result of moral virtues being balanced within the individual. Aristotle saw the mean as the middle road to happiness. He argued that all of life is really an attempt to find the highest good. Pleasure is momentary, but happiness is an ethical state of balance of the individual soul.
Explain the role Aristotle assigns individuals for removing their own ignorance
Although he felt teaching was necessary to achieve this goal. Aristotle placed a strong responsibility upon the head of the individual for removing their own ignorance. He stressed that happiness was the utmost moral goal of every individual, and striving for such a balanced and virtuous state was the unique characteristic that set humanity apart from the beasts (and slaves and women, in…… [Read More]
Deontological ethics suggests that there are certain moral principles which are so important that one should follow them as if setting a moral law for all time. Kant formulated his categorical imperative to suggest that there are some transcendent moral laws that are applicable to all situations, and cannot be waived no matter how dire the consequences (Kant and business ethics, 2013, S). Anticipated positive consequences, according to deontological ethicists, do not excuse immoral or questionable behavior.
Kant's ethical notions contradict many accepted notions of firm behavior. For example, it is largely accepted that an organization has an obligation to make a profit to enrich its shareholders. Some business ethicists consider it immoral to take shareholder money and use it to engage in ethical initiatives because that is using other people's investment capital to satisfy the manager's own personal sense of morality. In Kant's view, however, if every entity…… [Read More]
Sleepers in the Context Of Kant's Moral Philosophy
Barry Levinson's 1996 motion picture Sleepers provides viewers with a shocking (and intriguing at the same time) account involving a group of boys who perform a horrible crime as a result of wanting to prank someone and end up in a juvenile center where they are subjected to a series of brutal abuses. The scene when the boys accidentally kill a person as they want to prank the hot dog vendor is especially interesting. Looking at matters from a perspective involving Kant's moral philosophy, it would seem that it is wrong to judge the boys solely based on how they murder an innocent human being.
When considering Kant's moral philosophy, it seems that the boys have a complex understanding of the situation they are in and of the role they need to play in this respective situation. Kant's Categorical Imperative theory perfectly…… [Read More]
However, the issue is more nuanced -- what if, as a humanitarian effort, a pharmaceutical company sold recently expired drugs at very low cost to an impoverished developing nation in the grips of an epidemic? hat if a food company donated food that was safe but 'past its expiration date' to a famine-stricken nation? In this case, a utilitarian calculus would support such exchanges. The balance between the benefit of being cured or not starving to death and potential harm of bad drugs or food would suggest such a donation was ethical. From a Rawlsian point-of-view, imagining whether you were the producer or the consumer, it seems likely that 'you' the consumer would take a risk of eating safe but recently stale rice to avoid starvation, much like a producer would be happy to gain good publicity and unload goods that cannot be sold in the U.S. Everyone, in short,…… [Read More]
The question arising from this claim is whether evidence exists to prove that there exists an infinitely good, powerful, and wise God where morality naturally emerges. Humes argues that is hard to imagine that an all-good, powerful God exists in this world full of pain and misery. From these claims, one can argue that this insight, or God, has both evil and good, as is present in man if man is in God's image and likeliness.
Immanuel Kant: from the Critique of Pure Reason, the Good Will and the Categorical Imperative, the Postulates of Practical Reason
Kant believes that the vigorous application of same methods of reasoning can yield to an equal development in dealing with the issues of moral philosophy. Kant proposes a list of categories of Freedom in Relation to the concept of good vs. evil. Kant uses logical distinction as the basis for the catalog. Even though…… [Read More]
Sometimes, when faced with a situation within murky ethical waters, there are difficult decisions to make. This is not made easier by the various philosophical outlooks available today, some of which would provide contradictory advice. The ethics of Emmanuel Kant, John Stuart Mill, John awls, and Aristotle might, for example provide widely different viewpoints on whether a charitable donation should be accepted from a business person whose main income is from selling drugs. Ultimately, the choice lies with the individual, and the main question must be whether the person who accepts the donation can reasonably live with the final decision he or she makes.
According to Johnson (2010), Kant's categorical imperative focuses on the command and action, divorcing the action from premeditated or related goals. It applies unconditionally to the imperative to engage in action such as leaving something alone or taking something. This can be applied to…… [Read More]
oss thought that all people should be benevolent and so if lying affects one's benevolence, one needs to decide if lying is better for the sake of benevolence.
oss' non-absolutist take to ethics is preferred because is considers what is morally right in certain situations. In the instance of a Poker game, it is a game that relies upon lying or "bluffing" so it actually does pass Kant's universal law test. Kant would probably not take issue with the game of Poker because it is a game that needs the aspect of bluffing in order to work. But, if we want to use the example and examine it purely from a Kantian perspective on lying, then we must consider that people are acting from a means approach and not an end approach and all of the players have the same intention in mind -- to wind the game -- and…… [Read More]
c. I believe people should be able to eat sand because it is the right thing to do. Duty-based ethics
d. I believe people should be able to eat sand because it is good for one's health. Virtue ethics
e. I believe people should be able to eat sand if they decide they want to, regardless of whether it is someone else's sand. Entitlement-based ethics
f. I believe people should be able to eat sand if they want to because they are free to make the decision themselves. ights-based ethics
g. I believe I will eat sand because it is the standard meal for my community. elativistic ethics
Q4. Duty-based ethics: It is my duty to follow through with instructions my boss gives me, even if I do not agree with the concept. It is my moral obligation to respect authority figures.
Consequence-based ethics: Even though some employees…… [Read More]
The "Halloween" films that continue to be so popular are prime examples, but just about any horror film made within the past three decades follows basically the same formula, they have just gotten increasingly sexual and violent, as society has continued to embrace the genre. There are literally hundreds of other graphic examples, such as "Saw," an extremely violent film that has spawned six other films, and the examples of so many films being released in 2009. These films do not celebrate the woman, they demean her, and the fact that they are celebrated by society is troubling and agonizing at the same time.
Some of the films that empower women into the hero roles include "Terminator 2," the "Alien" series, "Misery," and other films glorify or at least acknowledge the female predator or warrior, offering up a different view of women as successful anti-heroes. However, most of these films…… [Read More]
George must take time and think about his company, his coworkers, and Med-Train because his decision will have a ripple effect on them all. When applying the golden rule George will think about the stakeholders and make a more informed decision. A selfish decision in this case may not only harm George but also have negative consequences on all the stakeholders involved.
After analyzing the Georges case and considering the dilemma facing him; deciding between loyalty to his company and being honest to all stakeholders involved in the process and the ethical and legal ramifications to consult (albeit from a position of his own company) with his employer's main competitor. The recommendation to George has several facets to help him make the most beneficial ethical and legal decision.
George must schedule a meeting with the human resources director and check into XYZ Incorporated's policy to gauge the rules regarding…… [Read More]
Direct-Consumer Drug Advertising
Direct-to-Consumer Drug Advertising
Direct-to-consumer drug advertising of pharmaceutical drugs is a hot-button issue. Is it ethical, or does it lead to self-diagnosis and take advantage of people who have hope for a cure? Currently, New Zealand and the United States are the only two countries that allow this kind of direct-to-consumer advertising to take place, which calls into question why other countries do not allow the same, if the practice is ethical. From a deontological point-of-view, using Kant's categorical imperative, this paper will address whether the direct-to-consumer advertising of pharmaceutical drugs is ethical or unethical. According to the deontological approach, one's duty is to do what is morally right and avoid what is morally wrong, regardless of what the consequences of those actions may be (Beauchamp, 1991; Waller, 2005). Because that is the case, there are moral questions raised that have to be considered with something as…… [Read More]
blow the whistle" on what you heard in the garden? If so, how will you blow the whistle? If you decide to blow the whistle, what are your reasons for doing so? Your discussion should reflect knowledge of what Boatright says about issues, problems and justifications for whistle-blowing. Also, in discussing the answers to these questions you should include the following: 1) you should evaluate real and potential conflicts of interests that confront you in your decision 2) you should explain how your reasoning is consistent or inconsistent with the three following moral theories: Kantian moral theory, utilitarian moral theory and virtue theory.
Our MBA is not really aware of what is going on; all he has is assumptions, guesses. He has no actual proof. In the first case, he has had suspicions of several transactions -- their accounting practices seem suspect - and he has pointed out…… [Read More]
In this "slave morality," as Nietzsche states, the values of the master morality, which are proper, and turned around, which undermines the natural order. He believes the natural order was that the strong continue to succeed at the cost of the weaker members of society. In response to their lowered status in the order, the caste used their hatred, revenge, and resentment to create morals that would weaken the master class. This "slave revolt," according to Nietzsche, turned acts that should be admired, such as force, into "evil" acts, while acts that went against the natural law, such as self-sacrifice and forgiveness, as "good." It created a set of moral values related to "good vs. evil" as opposed to "good vs. bad," understood aesthetically as opposed to morally (Nietzsche, Essay I & II).
According to Nietzsche, this lead to a false sense of moral responsibility, since the fear of those…… [Read More]
Cable provider Adelphia was one of the major accounting scandals of the early 2000s that led to the creation of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. A key provision of the Act was to create a stronger ethical climate in the auditing profession, a consequence of the apparent role that auditors played in some of the scandals. SOX mandated that auditors cannot audit the same companies for which they provide consulting services, as this link was perceived to result in audit teams being pressured to perform lax audits in order to secure more consulting business from the clients. There were other provisions in SOX that increased the regulatory burden on the auditing profession in response to lax auditing practices in scandals like Adelphia (McConnell & Banks, 2003). This paper will address the Adelphia scandal as it relates to the auditors, and the deontological ethics of the situation.
Adelphia was once a…… [Read More]
Markel's "Toward a Sense Ethics Technical Communication" McBride's "An Ethical Imperative
There has been significant research into the notion of ethics in technical communication. A vast majority of that research points towards a deontological approach as serving this profession best. Due to the nature of their occupation, however, technical communicators are severely limited in the amount of ethical behavior they can manifest.
The three articles reviewed in this document are Alicia McBride's "Towards a Sense of Ethics for Technical Communication," Gary Stout and Earl Weiss's "Ethics, gen Y style," and Mike Markel's "An Ethical Imperative for Technical Communications." The primary motif that ties all three of these articles together is the fact that they all address various issues of ethical thought and behaviors within the work environment. Weiss and Stout's article reinforces the need for ethical standards within the corporate world of accounting. This article details five theories of ethical…… [Read More]
In addition, we might ask ourselves if the richer nations have or not a greater responsibility as far as the research and development in the area of sustainable energy are concerned. (Reid, environmentalleader.com)
elieving that there are such energy sources or consumption policies which would allow the planet's resources to be maintained for a longer period, while making sure that all the nations are provided with a comfortable living is rather naive. Under these circumstances, it has been argued that doing the moral thing means choosing the least terrible solution. The problem is that this implies a relativistic evaluation of the matter which impacts the manner in which the moral principles are conceived.
efore stepping into a debate regarding the character of the moral principles, we may state that we agree with the opinions which state that there is no such thing as objective moral principles."Ethics can be seen as…… [Read More]
Con: This approach can be excessively rigid and fail to take into consideration social nuances
Neutral: Kant, the developer of the categorical imperative and the founding father of this ideology, saw his view as a kind of middle path -- he did not believe that all actions set moral laws for all time, but that some types of moral principles should remain inviolate.
Virtue ethics or human nature moral theory
Pro: This stresses the need to be a good person, to make good moral decisions. It focuses on the good that 'doing good' can provide both for the actor and the subject of moral decision-making.
Con: Good people, even when they believe they are doing the right thing, can engage in actions that have very negative moral consequences.
Neutral: Virtue ethics has come into prominence in recent decades, perhaps because of the increasing focus upon the 'self' in modern culture,…… [Read More]
This is a pertinent observation and one that is possibly central to understanding the problem of environmental ethics today.
Bugeja goes on to state that "…the new technologies that now keep us constantly connected also keep us constantly distracted" (Bugeja, 2008). He also makes the important point that, "Digital distractions now keep us from addressing the real issues of the day. Each of us daily consumes an average of nine hours of media through myriad technological platforms…" (Bugeja, 2008). In other words, we have become distracted from the holistic view of reality by modern communications technology to the extent that we are out of contact with the environmental issues that surround us.
Bugeja is also of the opinion that this situation has deprived us of the important aspect of critical thought. Critical thinking is defined as "… the ability to engage in reflective and independent thinking, and being able to…… [Read More]
William Styron's novel Sophie's Choice presents an almost unimaginably terrible moral dilemma to the reader. In the novel, the character Sophie and her two children are taken to the Nazi death camp Auschwitz-irkenau during the Nazi purge of the Jews. When entering the camp and being examined by an SS officer that is also a doctor, she tells the doctor that there has been a mistake, that she is not Jewish, but Catholic, and that she should be spared. Allegedly sympathizing with her, the doctor then allows Sophie a "reward," and her reward is to be able to save one of her children -- but she must choose which one is to be saved and which one is to die right there on the spot. There are several ways that one could ultimately view Sophie's decision to save Jan, her elder boy, such as using a Kantian, a utilitarian, or…… [Read More]
The utilitarian perspective focuses on the broad impacts of the actions, rather than just how the actions affect specific individuals (Andre & Velasquez, 2010). From the utilitarian perspective, genetic testing has the potential to do great harm to many, and to benefit many. The utilitarian arithmetic points out that the benefits to the companies in utilizing genetic testing is that profits increase. The argument can also be made that wealthier companies provide more jobs and wealthier insurance companies are better able to pay out to those who do receive payments. The counter to the former point is that this employment is theoretical -- not only may it not occur, but it may not occur in the United States. The counter to the latter is that insurance is largely price inelastic, so there is no improvement in coverage likely from handing more profits to insurance companies.
On the harm side, many…… [Read More]
Justin Ellsworth's parents should not have been given access to his e-mail account on their request alone, as it would have violated nearly every privacy act in existence at the time of the case, the Yahoo agreement terms with Justin, and set a dangerous precedence for invasion of digital assets of the deceased. Yahoo relented and only provided the e-mail account access on court order, which preserved the digital rights and privacy of its millions of customers using Yahoo mail and other online e-mail applications in the process (Leach 2005). Yahoo argued successfully that providing access without court order would have violated the Stored Communications Act (SCA), 18. U.S.C. § 2701. This has become an often-cited precedent by all other Internet e-mail providers who must retain the trust of their customers to stay in business. The case has a multifaceted ethical aspect to it, which is analyzed from a…… [Read More]
Utilitarianism is a consequentialist ethical framework. The consequences of an action are more important than the motivations behind the action or the action itself. An action has "utility" if it serves the greatest good. The basic principle of utilitarianism is creating the greatest good for the greatest number of people, or the greatest happiness for the greatest number of people. The ethics of utilitarianism differ from ethical egoism in that the individual may make a sacrifice for the common good because it is the aggregate of happiness/goodness that matters, not maximizing individual happiness. Central to utilitarianism is the belief that all people are inherently equal and of equal consideration when making ethical decisions (p. 55). John Stuart Mill outlined the core tenets of utilitarianism, which became a fundamental component of Enlightenment political philosophy. Another utilitarian philosopher, Jeremy Bentham, proposed a happiness calculus that can be used to more rigorously apply…… [Read More]
Mill, Kant, Religion, And Gay Marriage
In theory, freedom and liberty for all appears to be an excellent concept, one which nearly everyone would embrace. However, the practice of this ideology is not always as halcyon as its theoretical mandate. Quite frequently, it is possible for there to be conflicts of interests presented due to the notion that everyone feels entitled to pursue that which he or she wishes. There are numerous examples of this intrinsic conflict of what essentially is a question of free will. One of the most salient of these examples can be illustrated in the issue of the rights of gays to pursue lawful marriage. On the one hand, various members of the gay and lesbian community believe that they should be legally permitted to engage in same sex marriages under their rights of freedom and the pursuance of their own respective happiness.
The conflict, of…… [Read More]
There are several ways that BP could have chosen to respond, all of which were "open" to them (i.e. they had free will), yet those chose to take paths that were less moral. Kant's universal law would have them put their responsibility to humanity as the motivator, however, their motives have not proven to be driven by doing what is genuinely good for humanity.
Blackburn (2009) states that it is tricky to apply the categorical imperative and that the most persuasive examples of it being effective are in cases where there is an institution whose existence depends on sufficient performance by a sufficient number of individuals.
Suppose, as is plausible, that our ability to give and receive promises depends upon general compliance with the principle of keeping promises. Were we to break them sufficiently often, or were promise-breaking to become a 'law of nature,' then there would be no such…… [Read More]
Kant and Mill both present us with two theories to answer the question of morality for all people. Kant provides us with the Categorical Imperative which tells us that all persons are morally equal because we all have the ability to reason. On the other hand, Mill provides us with Utilitarianism which tells us to follow utility or in other words what provides the greatest amount of happiness. Both principles of Kant and Mill can be used against morality through a series of steps or in Mill's case the "application stage." An action is to be tested against these steps and the end result is ultimately the deciding factor of whether or not the specific action is moral or immoral.
Mill's "Principle of Utility" is referred to as the fundamental moral principle. The fundamental moral principle is based on utility or what produces the greatest amount of happiness. Similar to…… [Read More]
Philosophy and Morality
INSTRUCTIONS The exam consists essays. Please essays document. Please plagiarize. Be paraphrase verbatim language authors putting quotation marks. You document sources, -text citation ( footnotes) a reference page.
John Arthur's "Morality, Religion, and Conscience,"
A concern on the relationship between morality and religion is an ancient argument that continues in philosophy in the present times. The argument is mainly on whether morality emanates from an institution or religious background. Theologians in their numbers provide unwavering support the argument that a unifying absolute force or God provides universal moral guidance. The importance of observing morality and religion as independent on one another but related in some way has been argued by other philosophers (Lyons 479). John Arthur argues that morality and religion are not interlocking in relevant manners. Arthur argues that morality in independent from religion and religion does not influence moral action. It is his contention…… [Read More]
Consider the three purposes of morality treated in Chapter 1. Which of these would it be easier for utilitarianism to fulfill and which could well be more difficult for that system to fully meet?
Of the three purposes of morality treated in Chapter One, perhaps the easiest purpose for the ethical system of utilitarianism, as developed by the Englishman Jeremy Bentham, to meet would be to create a functional system of social ethics, or the ethical schema that holds a society together by its ethical 'glue.' Utilitarianism suggests that society, when pressed on many sides by the competition of different ethical claims, or even simply by different but equally valid claims for personal happiness, should choose the truth claim that allows for the greatest good for the greatest number of individuals within that particular society. For instance, the happiness of the many in my neighborhood to sleep late at…… [Read More]
The nineteenth century German philosopher Immanuel Kant presented an ethical code that assigned a strict "right" or "wrong" to every action. Called the categorical imperative, Kant believed that it does not matter what the consequences or outcome of actions are; there are certain things that are right and certain things that are wrong. These ethical categories of right and wrong are not negotiable. It can never be "sometimes" ok to tell a white lie, or to steal. Instead, Kant created easy to understand categories that apply theoretically to all cultures and all people at all times. Human beings are always morally obliged to do the right thing in any given situation, even if doing so leads to suffering. Therefore, it would be considered right to tell the truth to a murderer and subsequently die rather than to lie to the murderer and survive. Davis (n.d.). uses the example of…… [Read More]
If Kant's points are to be assimilated when adopting a moral stance which is consistent with man's dignity, such absolute terms are inevitably defined by dominant social structures, bringing us to the application of a normative theoretical structure. The inextricable relationship which theology and morality have shared throughout history tends to have a tangible impact on the way these hegemonic standards are defined.
And Kant, rejects any flexibility outright, however. Beyond its deviation from his established disposition toward moral absolutes, such variation violates Kant's maxim about man as an end rather than a means. Man is to be the motive for moral acts, with his dignity defining right and wrong. Indeed, as he pointedly phrases it, "the laws of morality are laws according to which everything ought to happen; they allow for conditions under which what ought to happen doesn't happen." (Kant, 1)
Like Kant, Camus asserts a clear…… [Read More]
"(Kant, 30) Thus, Dorothea's action coincides with the first formulation of the categorical imperative. Had she determined to refuse the request made by Casaubon, the law would have contained a contradiction in itself and thus would have been violated. It is arguable that when asked for help, a person should grant it at the expense of his or her personal comfort. The contrary law could not have any validity since it would deny the existence of kindness and selflessness among people. Dorothea acted selflessly, although she did waver to make this sacrifice simply because she did not feel the actual end of the action would be noble enough. Nevertheless, the immediate end, that of completing her duty to her husband as a fellow human being, is a noble end in itself, and this is why Dorothea chose to fulfill it. Dorothea significantly rejects the circumstance- that of having to perform…… [Read More]
Teen Plastic Surgery: A Controversial Medical Practice
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, in 2007, more than 87,000 teenagers had cosmetic surgery; and that number has grown exponentially since. Although aesthetic cosmetic surgery is popular amongst United States teens, physicians and plastic surgeons worry that such invasive surgery on teens' still growing bodies can be dangerous. Other developed countries, including Germany and Australia, are considering banning all but medically necessary plastic surgery for anyone under the age of 18. However, the question remains, if such a measure were taken like that in the United States for minors stem the tide of teenagers going under the knife? This paper will address the controversy associated with teenagers and aesthetic cosmetic surgery in the United States, and the business of plastic surgery for teens, from a legal, ethical, and social responsibility standpoint.
In a country, and dare say…… [Read More]
Present, explain, and assess the thesis that only acts done from duty have moral worth
In his Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals, Immanuel Kant addresses the issue of how people can determine the moral value of actions. His central claim is that only acts that are done out of duty can be considered to have any moral value. Implicit in this topic is the need to reconcile the intent of one's actions with the result of their actions. Kant explores exactly where morality can be located when identifying the value of one's actions. At stake in Kant's argument is whether there is in fact an a priori framework for how people should behave, and where virtue is found.
At the beginning of the Groundwork, Kant explains the notion of logic and defines the terms that he deploys to explain his governing thesis. These terms include: good will,…… [Read More]
For example, many individuals value freedom and knowledge as things that can bring happiness. So, having their own value, these things are parts of happiness.
Mill believed that everyone's happiness is important. He believed in what he called the 'greatest happiness principle.' According to the greatest happiness principle, a person is ethically required to try to bring about the consequences that would lead to the greatest amount of happiness for everyone affected. More simple stated, if a person can produce more happiness (and/or less suffering) in a certain situation, then he or she is ethically obligated to do so. In more contemporary ethical terms, this is called the requirement to 'maximize happiness. If one was considering doing something for one's own happiness, but that action would cause others suffering, then Mill would have to take both of the sides into account in deciding whether or not the action should morally…… [Read More]
videos is carried out; with each review explaining a particular ethical approach using examples given in respective video watched. From the videos, four major ethical approaches are highlighted in the paper; Kant, Utilitarian, Aristotle's virtue ethics and Confucius. At the end of this work, the reader will be able to understand and distinguish between moral, ethical, values and legal issues.
According to Kant, morality is based on a standard of reasonableness known as categorical imperative; thus, immorality is the violation of the categorical imperative (Aune, 1979). Also, Kant claims that for one to be moral, they should uphold the truth in whichever situation they face. However, from the video, the situation an individual whose family is wanted by the murderer faces may change their view of Kant's philosophy. Kant asserts that the individual is supposed to speak the truth on the issue, which according to him is a moral…… [Read More]
There are several different ethical perspectives that one can take to evaluate the goodness of actions. Among the leading philosophies are virtue ethics, consequentialism, utilitarianism (a specific type of consequentialism) and Kantian ethics, specifically universal law. This paper will examine three scenarios in the workplace against these different ethical philosophies. The first scenario is an employee making long distance phone calls on the company dime; the second two employees having sex in the conference room after hours and the third is an employee who drinks excessively at lunch.
Personal Phone Calls
Among the schools of normative ethics, virtue ethics is the one that emphasizes moral character (Hursthouse, 2012). There are two basic ways to look at these phone calls from the virtue ethics perspective. From the employee's perspective, no moral person would steal, because theft is not a virtuous act. If stealing could ever be virtuous, there would need…… [Read More]
Ethical Issues of Importance
Kant's categorical imperative is the notion that there are some compulsions that are inherently ethical. It means there are some actions and codes of ethics that are ethically defensible in an immutable fashion, regardless of the situation. The best example of a categorical imperative is the proverbial golden rule which states: do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
Hypothetical imperatives function as the antithesis of categorical imperatives. They are actions that are ethically defensible based on certain mutable factors such as desire or temporary circumstances. Hypothetical imperatives mean that there are certain situations in which one can engage in behavior deemed ethical, and others in which it is unethical behavior. Selling stock in the stock market is an example of this imperative.
Kant's first formulation is to act only on maxims that one wants to be universal law. It means only do…… [Read More]
The ACA does not by any means fully resolve this, but it makes strides towards addressing this critical issue of morality. The individual mandate is similar -- where the profit of one individual leads to the suffering of another, the suffering takes precedence -- the money is not as important. Not doing harm to others is the more important imperative, so the sacrifice for the greater good in this case would be the moral course of action according to Kant.
Locke's moral philosophy comprises two parts. The first is natural law, in that there are divine laws, they are obligatory and humans can understand these. The second is more hedonistic, that pleasures and pains serve to "provide morality with its normative force" (Sheridan, 2011). That these two views seem to contrast is well-established and indeed they lead to different interpretations of the key tenets of the Affordable Care Act.…… [Read More]
them" principle exemplified in Scott Adams' "Dilbert" cartoon. (Borowski, 1626-30).
Actions must be directed towards the common good, not just toward the profit of the corporation. (1628).
"An ethical relationship between managers and employees is due to the fact respect should govern all human relationship. . . . there is nothing in a 'morally correct' relationship between managers and employees that goes against the company's desire to make a profit -- on the contrary, such a peaceable relationship can help to meet this desire." (1631).
The Malden Mills plant dramatically increased production after Feuerstein's benevolence. (1631).
Child Labor from the Perspective of Virtues Ethics & Kantian Ethics
Anscombe criticized the rule-based ethics associated with the ideas of J.S. Mill and Kant. She thought it made no sense to rely upon a rule-based ethics which commanded a particular course of action for any situation on the basis of universal principles applicable…… [Read More]
Admittedly, we do not know how it that anything (such as a physical universe) exists, let alone exactly how it came about that life came into existence. It is often suggested that there must be a God since it is impossible for anything to come into existence spontaneously through "self-creation" and equally impossible that anything existed forever in the past. Regardless of how elementary the very first particle of matter (or energy) and regardless how long ago it first emerged, it must have come from somewhere and through some process.
In the minds of many people, the only logical explanation for the existence of the universe and (especially) of life is that it must have been created by a God. However, there are serious logical problems with that belief. First, it necessarily relies on completely circular reasoning: either spontaneous existence from nothing is possible or it is impossible; it cannot…… [Read More]
Once again, the moral value of the matter in question is proven to be wrong.
Therefore, the fundamental principles which need to be taken into consideration when discussing the Kantian ethics are represented by the categorical imperative, humanity and autonomy. The most important value that man needs to respect is life. Just like he will not harm another person's life, he must never harm his own. Annulling one's self means not only annulling your own humanity, but also using it as a means for reaching happiness. This is wrong, because humanity in all its forms and manifestations should be dealt with as a goal in itself and never as a mere means.
It might be argued that happiness is the supreme goal of all the human beings. When life is made only of things which cause misery and it is clear that there is no hope for things to get…… [Read More]
" (ohlf) These maxims may be as simple as gratifying a desire or something complex like becoming a lawyer. Kant then distinguishes between two basic kinds of maxims: material and formal principles. If I am acting in order to satisfy some desire, such as going to a Starbucks to get a coffee, that is acting on a material principle. According to Kant, maxims are rules that describe how one does act and imperatives prescribe how one should act. A categorical imperative commands that I should act in some way unconditionally. Kant regards these categorical imperatives as moral laws and they apply to everyone in the same way. In other words, if stealing is morally wrong, we cannot say that stealing is okay., because we are hungry and lack the money to buy food for ourselves or our families.
Kant's Categorical Imperative commands that we should act in some…… [Read More]