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Moreover, how does he justify saying one would rather be Socrates dissatisfied than a fool who is satisfied? His point is obvious - it is better to have brains and not achieve happiness than be dumb and be contented. But Socrates, brilliant as he was, chose death over exile from Athens, which it can be argued did not lead to happiness in Socrates nor in the students who admired him, nor did it lead to happiness in Plato, the scribe who catalogued all that Socrates said. Taking it one step farther, as Mill often does to make his points, had Socrates moved out of Athens, he could have continues to share his wondrous insights with Plato and the world would have benefited in millennia to come. And after all, if Mill's entire thesis is that happiness is the goal for all individuals, who then is to say that a simpleton…… [Read More]
John Stuart Mill's concept of liberty professes to be liberal but ends up with a distinctly 'non-liberal' feel when analysing the details. This paper endeavours to define exactly what Mills' notion of liberty is and how it should be regulated by studying his book "On Liberty." The main discrepancies of his theory will be highlighted so as to demonstrate the apparent contradiction between his ideology and the examples he chooses to showcase his theory in its application.
Mill defines liberty (civil or social) as "the nature and limits of the power which can be legitimately exercised by society over the individual." (Chapter I - Introductory; 1) The obvious wielder of this power Mill identified to be the government. However the government can be controlled or checked in turn since they are still held accountable to the people. Mill recognized another wielder of this control over the individual, the 'society' in…… [Read More]
Personal usefulness or utility is not required to clash with public usefulness. Usefulness or Utility is often misguided for pragmatism. but, pragmatism is the affinity to encourage certain preferred objective, regardless of the consideration between what is correct and reasonable. Utility is the standard level of being practical, and hence it must take into account not just what would generate a preferred objective, but what would encourage the maximum pleasure, and what is appropriate and reasonable. Mill acknowledges that the theory can be distorted. But he states that, in the event of discord between personal utility and public usefulness, the decisive factor of utility can continued to be used to arrive at a conclusion. (yan, 38)
What is the intention to abide by the theory of utility? According to Mill people long for their individual pleasure, no matter the degree of distortion in their own behavior; they wish and emphasize…… [Read More]
Unfortunately, we have had no more success at finding that limit than Mill did, for what we see all around us today is that very same "political despotism" of which Mill speaks with trepidation. Mill writes that it is the "majority" who makes "the ways of mankind" (102-3), but his notion of "majority rule" appears to be based on the assumption that political despotism has not been enshrined. Majority rule would, in Mill's unadulterated view, affect the world democracies by forming the ways of the people within those democracies -- guiding them toward "harmonious development of his powers to a complete and consistent whole" (103). Again, the vision is extremely Romantic, for it does not take into account the disharmony found in the very heart of man, as someone like Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn would say (after experiencing the horrors of societal collapse in Soviet Russia).
"Majority rule," therefore, does not seem…… [Read More]
John Stuart Mill on Liberty
In John Stuart Mill's brilliant 19th Century essay "On Liberty" he states that "the worth of a State, in the long run, is the worth of the individuals composing it." What Mills is purporting in that statement is that the State (the government) must not impede on the natural development of individual liberty. We are never to forget that we have inalienable rights for life and liberty. These rights are as natural as the air we breathe. No government or group of thugs can ever deny our natural pursuits of liberty and freedom. The entire essay stresses the need of what liberty is to be understood and constituted in our lives, and to be warned of external pressures that would impede our basic civil liberties; essentially, he warns that individuals reacting under the conscious of a single, civil mindset to exert chic laws may infringe…… [Read More]
e. herself very unhappy. Personal happiness should not be compromised for the sake of greater happiness of maximum number of people when the one person who would be most affected by your decision is you. I feel that Mill's concept is workable when rights of other people are involved. For example Katie would not be hurting anyone's rights by choosing to become a doctor. But lets consider another example. Larry is in love with Susan while he is married to Anne. Susan wants Larry to seek divorce from his wife and abandon his three children in order to marry her. Though he doesn't love Anne anymore, they are both polite to each other. He often feels that his love for Susan grew out of boredom from his present marriage. Larry is utterly confused. He loves Susan but he is legally married to Anne and loves his children immensely. If Larry…… [Read More]
The servant is deemed 'other' by society, of an entirely different class than the mistress. The servant seems grateful simply to simply be employed to an individual of high-born status. The 'otherness' between the two women is so great, the servant does not even seem to perceive herself as part of the same substance as the lady. She has no jealousy of the fact that the lady does not work, and seems to not fully understand the sensual implications of the fact she is wearing the lady's jewels and intimately touches the lady to prepare her for the ball.
3. Mrs. Warrens Profession illustrates three different possibilities for Victorian women: Prostitution, marriage, or living as a New Woman. What do these three possibilities say about each other? What attitudes toward marriage are projected in the play? How is marriage equated with prostitution? What moral and ethical questions about respectable society…… [Read More]
Plato and John Stuart Mill
Glaucon's challenge to Socrates at the beginning of Book II of Plato's Republic is to clarify in what sense justice is a human "good." Glaucon begins by separating goods into three categories: those which are harmless pleasures with no results, those things which are good in themselves but also lead to good results (like knowledge or health), and those which are unpleasant in themselves yet lead to good results (like caring for the sick, or physical exercise). Glaucon wants to know how Socrates would characterize justice in these categories. This leads Glaucon to the famous discussion of the "ring of Gyges" -- like the ring of Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit, Gyges' ring confers invisibility on the wearer. Gyges is a shepherd who, according to myth, discovered such a ring and used it to sleep with the local queen, kill the king, and take over…… [Read More]
For Singer, the human community must receive justice, not simply a society setting its own local standards of morality and justice, as in Mill's argument. For Singer there are no 'imperfect' obligations, rather all obligations are absolute. Someone who merely does no harm to others, or extends help only to family members and his or her immediate community is committing a moral wrong. Even someone who is 'good' but spends his or her money on flat screen TVs rather than on aid to starving children is immoral.
Singer's philosophy is useful to contrast with that of Mill's attempt to justify the moral nature of utilitarianism, because it clearly supports the notion that utilitarianism can be conceptualized as a highly moral system, even more radically so than Mill's. Mill's less idealistic, but seemingly more reasonable and realistic idea of allowing for the 'greatest good' in most instances, while still protecting the…… [Read More]
Liberty, by John Stuart Mill [...] how John Stuart Mill would view the issue of pornography. Pornography has been argued by many feminists and advocates for women's rights to be pernicious to women because it eroticizes and promotes relationships of inequality and subordination of women to men. For this reason, they argue that pornography should be censored. hat you think Mill would say about this? ould Mill be a principled opponent to any form of censorship, including censorship of pornography?
In this paper, I will argue that John Stuart Mill was an early proponent of equal rights for women, but he also believed in free speech, and would never advocate censorship, even of objectionable material, and his opening paragraph clearly states this fact. "The subject of this Essay is not the so-called Liberty of the ill, so unfortunately opposed to the misnamed doctrine of Philosophical Necessity; but Civil,…… [Read More]
It is only then that true liberty has taken place as it has provided a forum and a backdrop for examination of all sides in an issue and given all parties the chance to determine if they still believe in what they stood for (Mills).
According to the essay Mills also does not believe society or the government has any actual or absolute control over an individual. In the essay he addresses his feelings about the government by stating that a good government really has no more power than a poor government over the people that it serves.
Mills refers to civil liberties and social liberties with his essay and causes the reader to examine the meaning of liberty through his use of examples.
According to Mills there is only one justifiable reason that liberty should be limited an that is for the prevention of harm. He is quick to…… [Read More]
Political Philosophy II: Theories of Freedom
John Stuart Mill's On Liberty is one of the foundational defenses of liberal, democratic government. According to Mill, there are certain core principles "that should regulate how governments and societies, whether democratic or not, can restrict individual liberties."[footnoteRef:1] Mill wrote that regardless of whether a monarch, dictator, or even a democratic majority governed, the only reason to deprive others of their liberties was what he called the harm principle, namely, that "a harm, an action must be injurious or set back important interests of particular people, interests in which they have rights" and "justifies restricting liberty to prevent harm to others."[footnoteRef:2] In defining the harm principle, Mill's intentions were clearly noble in that he wished to prevent the illegitimate use of power by the state to restrict free speech, sexual behavior, or other personal, private choices. However, since Mill wrote, even a number of…… [Read More]
The author of this report has been asked to answer a specific and thoughtful answer to a question about the greatest happiness principle and what it really means. Indeed, the question is how the principle is supposed to be useful and informative when it comes to guiding someone on what to do, what not to do and why. As the author expected, there is a strong correlation between this question and the general concept of utilitarianism. hile the linkage and comparison of the greatest happiness principle and utilitarianism may make it easy to some to offer some explanations and insights, it just complicates things for others in some ways and the author of this response is certainly among that echelon.
Before getting into semantics and how the principle can or should be perceived, the author of this report will quote the man who came up with the principle…… [Read More]
In the opening remarks to Utilitarianism, Mill sets the stage for this discussion. He accepts that the idea of utilitarianism dates back two thousand years, and is part of a philosophical discourse that has never been resolved. He then explains the prevailing thought that moral laws are considered universal, deriving from the same source. Their evidence is a priori in that they are simply assumed to be correct. These laws, however, lack a fundamental rule, something that is the root of morality, that should be self-evident. Mill is staking out a position that there is no such fundamental rule, and that this is a defect.
Mill then argues that utility, as described by Bentham, is where happiness derives from, and that this ultimately influences decision-making and morality even among those who reject the idea and attempt to base their moral standards on another universal code. Mill does not explicitly…… [Read More]
In this case, Mary would have acted precisely as she did, that is, pursuing her personal happiness and acting according to a pattern she had established before, that of being virtuous and always acting morally. In this case, the decision is plain and easy to take: Mary has to be virtuous so as to satisfy her own moral demands and ensure her emotional and spiritual comfort. Thus, she acts according to her pre-established set of rules.
Thus, Mary acts primarily, as she herself argues, so as not to 'soil' the beginning of her life. She feels that taking the money would save the old man because his own happiness and personal interest would be in giving the money away to anyone else besides his family: "I will not let the close of your life soil the beginning of mine. I will not touch your iron chest or your will."(Eliot, 411)…… [Read More]
Thus, due to women's continued dependence on men in order to survive in society, women inadvertently helped create the thinking that they cannot survive and live within their own means, not without the help of society, most particularly, men. Mill's discussion of male-female relations may be blatantly honest in acknowledging women oppression, but his arguments were strong in that he was able to specifically determine the factor which made women suppressed by men (that is, socio-economical dependence).
Elizabeth Browning had been aware of the plight of the women sector in her society. While Mill's analysis showed that women were subjugated by men because they are dependent on males socio-economically, Browning's explication in the poem "Aurora Leigh" illustrated how oppression had been able to penetrate and affect the mindset of women, who feel that their oppression was inherent and part of being a woman. This was reflected in her assertion that…… [Read More]
Mill talked of ethical freedom in terms of all areas wherein individual and society interacts and become involved with each other; Marx utilized the same viewpoint, although specified it in terms of proletarian-bourgeoisie relations.
For Marx, ethical freedom is self-realization within the individual, and primary in this realization was the acknowledgment that one needs to be economically independent in order for modern individuals, and society in general, to function progressively. Ethical freedom is said to have been achieved if there will develop a new social order, identified as the "industrial proletariat," described to be the modern individuals, belonging to the previously identified proletariat class, who embodies "fresh moral and political idea, but one rooted in the world of material reality" (Morgan, 2005:392). In concrete Marxian terms, self-realization is an event that will occur only once the following elements have been abolished, as cited in "The Communist Manifesto": "representative government, bourgeois…… [Read More]
In other words De Beauvoir sees the opportunity of secretary, shop girl, teacher, or nurse as wholly unlikely to offer women a real sense of independence and will likely continue to be treated as temporary positions held until the woman is married, at which time she will likely give up this vocation (surrender her body) and tend to a family.
Mill like De Beauvoir speaks of the extreme vocation of the wife and mother as one that offers much work and little independence. He says that women already share a larger burden than men with regard to living and in addition, and by virtue of this, necessary and natural role of the woman as wife and mother she is but should not be further barred from interests that could make her a better person.
…in addition to the physical suffering of bearing children, and the whole responsibility of their care…… [Read More]
Intrinsic Value of Liberty
There can be very few doubts as to the importance of liberty to the philosophical espousing of John Stuart Mill, who even authored a treatise entitled On Liberty to underscore the amount of emphasis he placed on this particular concept. What is most interesting about the many different notions the author has in relation to freedom is the circumscriptions that are routinely placed upon it in what is the age-old conflict between the individual and the group -- the latter of which routinely takes the form of government or some other determining mechanism of society. Not surprisingly, Mill presents a number of viewpoints that contradict the notion that the morality of the state should influence the personal opinions and actions of the individual, especially when the effects of those actions only resonate within the individual himself. The two most eminent of these arguments, of…… [Read More]
Courage, intelligence for example could be used for wrong purposes and hence it was important pre-requisite to have good will if an action was to be termed moral.
Intelligence, wit, judgment, and the other talents of the mind, however they be named, or courage, resoluteness, and perseverance as qualities of temperament, are doubtless in many respects good and desirable. But they can become extremely bad and harmful if the will, which is to make use of these gifts of nature and which in its special constitution is called character, is not good. (Kant 2: p 9)
John Stuart Mill on the other hand proposed a different theory of morality which stated that an action is right if it promotes happiness of the greatest number of people. In other words, if an action maximizes general happiness then it can be deemed moral. Mill felt that maximization of general happiness was the…… [Read More]
To cultivate genius when it does appear, a society must be free for all, not just the recognized geniuses. or, as Mill more eloquently puts it, "it is necessary to preserve the soil in which they [geniuses] grow. Genius can only breathe freely in an atmosphere of freedom...If from timidity they consent to be forced into one of these moulds [of conformity]...society will be little the better for their genius" (on Liberty, 9). Mill uses the extreme example of genius to illustrate the general principle he has devoted this entire book to; namely, that individual liberty is essential for the progress of a society. In this particular facet of his argument, he uses the archetypal vision of the genius to add a concrete incarnation of what otherwise might be an abstract and abstruse concept. Instead, Mill's view of liberty is rendered strikingly clear by his use of logic and example.…… [Read More]
For him, it is also important to know that liberty, while dependent on the individual's decision alone, should also take into account the consequences that will come out upon the accomplishment of an action. That is, it is vital that the individual think of the 'bigger picture': will the action benefit the common good, or will it benefit my personal interests only? Positive liberty, hence, becomes more vital when it goes beyond thinking and speaking, and the individual engages in doing a particular activity, knowing that s/he has the freedom to do so. Mill posits on this issue, "The liberty of the individual must be thus far limited; he must not make himself a nuisance to other people...It is desirable, in short, that in things which do not primarily concern others, individuality should assert itself. Where, not the person's own character, but the traditions or customs of other people are…… [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]
John Rawls' theory…. In his book A Theory of Justice John Rawls offers readers a "Kantian Interpretation" of his "original position," according to an essay in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (SAP). First, a review of Rawls' "original position" will set up the explanation of his Kantian link. Rawls posits (in his "original position") that in understanding his philosophy readers should imagine themselves as "…free and equal" and as willing to agree to "commit themselves to the principles of social and political justice" (SAP, p. 1). The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy asserts that the "main distinguishing feature" of Rawls' "original position" is "the veil of ignorance" (SEP, p. 1). hat that means is that in order to be certain there is a total "impartiality of judgment, the parties are deprived of all knowledge of their personal characteristics and social and historical circumstances" (SEP. p. 1).
In the original position (the…… [Read More]
As Hampton (1997) points out, "By using this argument, awls hopes to persuade readers that he has good reasons for commending his theory as correct, without relying on undefended or ill-defined intuitions" (p. 140).
But is his theory really "correct?" Is it even conceivable to apply awls' principles of egalitarianism to a society in which competition is rampant and 'status' is the permanent engraving on the proverbial brass ring? Moreover, in this increasingly globally connected world, could awls' theory of justice be conceivably functional on an international level? Taking into consideration the idealistic nature of awls' suppositions, combined with the complex list of criteria that would need to be fulfilled in order for his vision to take shape, I would have deny the applicability of awls' philosophies to the 21st century. It is possible that his principles may have worked in the small villages of Colonial New England where communities…… [Read More]
Every act happens at some time and in some place, and in like manner every act that we do either does or may affect both ourselves and others."
till others try to rebuff these objections, clarifying self-regarding acts and other-regarding acts.
J.C. Rees is at the helm of the counter-movement of interpretations, arguing that there is a distinguishable difference between actions that affect others and those that affect others' interests; he purports that it is the protection of other's interests to which Mill meant for liberty's limitation. Rees constructs a relativistic, conservative interpretation of liberty, in which the emphasis is placed on distinguishing interests from 'arbitrary wishes, fleeting fancies, and capricious demands." In his protection of the "permanent interests of man as a progressive being," Mill demands that the limitations of liberty extend to the interference of the protection of another citizen's own right to liberty.
The freedom of choice…… [Read More]
Freedom and the root of utilitarianism are focused on providing society as a whole with happiness, not just a particular group of individuals in the social order. Mill risks generalizing at this point, as he is inclined to impose his point-of-view without expressing interest in what others want.
It would be normal for someone to want people to achieve happiness, but this is not necessarily the case in Mill's situation, as he believes that his happiness is general and that every person on earth needs to have access to concepts that make him happy. Even with the fact that he was aware of the importance of objective thinking, Mill failed to observe that his theory acted directly against it.
2. Humans have feelings and their lives are governed by various sentiments that they experience through their lives. Mill's theory can actually become simpler if one were to consider things from…… [Read More]
Freedom, Liberty, And Authority
homas Jefferson is attributed as saying "the price for freedom is constant vigilance." Only those who are willing to stake there reputation, their personal well being, their fortunes and their futures on the pursuit and defense of freedom are those who will have a guarantee of remaining free from the tyranny of those who would exchange the freedom for the freedom of minority at the expense of the majority. John Stuart Mills captured this idea 100 years after the original constitutional convention, Declaration of Independence and the Constitution recorded these and other words into the annals of history. Mills accurately captured the reason U.S. citizens are free, and the only means by which the can hope to remain such.
Mills begins in much the same way as Hamilton as he sets the stage for the path, and pursuit of freedom. He identifies that there exists in…… [Read More]
Mill and Wilson
Attempting to find any common ground between the moral and political philosophies of John Stuart Mill and Edward O. Wilson seems futile, given that their ideas are based on extremely different premises and assumptions. Wilson was a Darwinian evolutionist who argued that human culture, behavior and morality was mostly rooted in genetics -- in DNA that had evolved over millions of years -- while this idea would simply have been alien to Mill. Wilson was a determinist and reductionist who seemed to put a low premium on individualism, while for Mill the individual was absolutely free and sovereign, and could not be coerced of controlled unless he or she did harm to others. There simply is no room in such unlimited personal freedom in Wilson's philosophy which is more concerned with the survival and reproduction of the human species as a whole than with individuals. In any…… [Read More]
ethics of discarded computers. Discussed is John Stuart Mill's philosophy.
Response scenario: I have just worn out my fourth computer. I love a high speed computer, but I feel guilty when I buy a new one. A new computer is my top priority for a purchase, and I begin saving for a new one almost as soon as I have purchased one. I know that many people are just like me. There must be junkyards full of computers. hy is there such a waste with hardware and software in the computer industry. Should I try to get by with less? Two sources are used. APA.
Computer trash is certainly becoming a problem for societies everywhere. Some people try to make use of them by creating art, but that is a miniscule use of the millions of old computers one can see set out for the garbage men or…… [Read More]
Plato and Utilitarians
Plato and the Utilitarians do not conceive of the good life in the same manner. Plato, through the character of Socrates, teaches that the true good life can only be attained by dedicating oneself to the pursuit of the one, the good, and the true -- the universal transcendental values that, when possessed, made one pleasing to God. (Thus, one sees Socrates teaching his students that the way to happiness is to do the will of God, which he argues can be and must be objectively discernible). The Utilitarians under the direction of the philosopher John Stuart Mill, however, view the good life in a much more subjective way. They say that is good which makes one happy and that is bad which makes one unhappy. Pain is the dictator of what is good and bad, so if it causes one pain, it cannot be good, and…… [Read More]
Here, Aristotle recognizes the variances which appear
to define our establishment of the means to pursuing happiness, musing that
"the characteristics that are looked for in happiness seem also, all of
them, to belong to what we have defined happiness as being. For some
identify happiness with virtue, some with practical wisdom, others with a
kind of philosophic wisdom, others with these, or one of these, accompanied
by pleasure or not without pleasure; while others include also external
prosperity." (Aristotle, I: 8) Aristotle uses this as a divining rod for
dissecting the various relationships which are perpetuated amongst
individuals. His argument engages in the dialectical process to discern
that which is 'good' apart from that which is 'evil' or 'neutral.' Through
such an engagement, he achieves a satisfactorily defended notion of 'good':
"Aristotle identifies the distinctively human phenomenon of
action arising from reason as the function of the human being:…… [Read More]
Aristotle, Mill & Kant on emotion
Ethics and its role on Emotion of Pleasure: Views from Aristotle, Immanuel Kant, and J.S. Mill
Analyzing the ethics of emotion, especially feelings of pleasure, is contemplated upon by the great philosophers Aristotle, Immanuel Kant, and John Stuart Mill. Each philosophers have arguments about the ethics of human emotions; however, despite the differences in focus and discussion of this issue, all three philosophers that the path towards achieving happiness or emotion of pleasure is subsistence to individualism and rationalization of society. That is, Kant, Mill, and Aristotle emphasize the vital role that intellectual development plays in the achievement of happiness among individuals.
In Immanuel Kant's discussion of the ethics of emotion, he argues that feelings of pleasure should be generated morally and rationally -- that is, there is a conscious effort in the individual to achieve pleasure that is right not only for him/her…… [Read More]
Aristotle vs. Mill
The Greek philosopher Aristotle and John Stuart Mill agreed that the objective of morality was the pursuit of general happiness and the good life in society and in the individual. ut they deviated in the concept of, and the manner of arriving at, "the right thing to do," especially in reference to friendships. Mill held that actions are right in the proportion that they tend to promote that happiness and wrong, as they tend to promote unhappiness. He advocated the action/rule-based type of morality, which determined the goodness of an act according to the consequences of that act and independently of the doer's virtues or character traits (Fieser). This type directly opposes the virtue-based morality propounded by Aristotle, who believed that happiness as the ultimate end of existence that is sought for itself and not for any other end.
Aristotle contended that friendship is the greatest external…… [Read More]
" This illustration is an exact explication of the kind of philosophy that Plato helped propagate in human society during his time, and still gained prominence and status as contending philosophies, to other philosophies of latter centuries. Rubinstein further stressed that Platonism thrives on the idea that human knowledge only becomes pure when it is more abstract; hence, knowledge explicated through concrete terms are considered as transmitted knowledge only, and is not considered the knowledge that humans will truly aspire for, and pursue as a purpose in life.
Criticisms against Platonism abound because of its inappropriateness and lack of responsiveness to the realities of human life and experience. Indeed, people cannot strongly subsist to the thought that knowledge in the most abstract form, because knowledge not utilized defeats the very purpose on why knowledge are generated, found, and developed -- to be used for human progress and self-development.
These criticisms…… [Read More]
Mill and U.S. Constitution
None of the issues being raised today by the Occupy all Street (OS) movement are new, but rather they date back to the very beginning of the United States. At the time the Constitution was written in 1787, human rights and civil liberties were far more constrained than they are in the 21st Century. Only white men with property had voting rights for example, while most states still had slavery and women and children were still the property of fathers and husbands. Only very gradually was the Constitution amended to grant equal citizenship and voting rights to all, and even the original Bill of Rights was added only because the Antifederalists threatened to block ratification. In comparison, the libertarianism of John Stuart Mill in his famous book On Liberty was very radical indeed, even in 1859 much less 1789. He insisted that individuals should be left…… [Read More]
Mills on Liberty
John Stuart Mill's on Liberty
To whom does Mill's principle of liberty apply? To whom does it NOT apply? Mill justifies the liberty principle according to "the permanent interests of man as a progressive being" (On Liberty, p. 4). What are the strengths and weaknesses of this argument?
Liberty should apply to everyone with a few exceptions. First, liberty should only be granted to the extent in which this liberty does not harm another's liberty. This is known as the harm principle. People should be granted liberty however the right to liberty must stop when it hinders on someone else's well-being. The same principle can also be applied to help others prevent self-harm. For example, children and "backwards" people are unable to prevent self-harm to themselves when granted too much liberty. Therefore, Mill's believes that in such examples despotism is appropriate so long as the ruler is…… [Read More]
Mill believes that it is impossible to be a great scientist, without having some feeling and sensitivity about the human condition given by the humanities, and someone learning the classics must understand the functioning of the modern world, to give what he or she is learning some significance.
How do the ideas on education of Locke, Jefferson and Mill relate to one another and to the importance of education for a democratic society such as our own?
Mill's stress upon holistic knowledge is essential for a citizen in a democracy -- today, a citizen must vote an elected official into office who can deal with the scientific complexities of global warming and healthcare, and can comprehend the intricacies of foreign cultures. To judge the knowledge base of our elected officials, citizens must also have a well-rounded basis of knowledge. That is why Thomas Jefferson believed so fervently in the need…… [Read More]
Therefore, the person who chooses to suspend his interests to comply with those artificial externally-imposed social values for the benefit of others will ultimately always suffer disadvantage because others cannot be counted upon to do so consistently and in a meaningful way, at least not beyond the ability of the state to control and ensure.
To Freud, modern civilization provides various tangible benefits to the individual but only at a tremendous cost. While living in society and with the benefits of government protection against the uncontrolled expression of the selfish will of others is a benefit, the fact that our goals and values, and the component elements of our psychological personas are determined and shaped to such a great extent by external society generates much if not all of the psychological pain and trauma experienced by individuals.
Personal Response and Conclusion
There is substantial value as well as inherent weaknesses…… [Read More]
The morality of the act can be defended by the Utilitarian principle that the number of deaths (250,000+) caused by dropping the weapons of mass destruction over Hiroshima and Nagasaki was less than the deaths that would have been caused by a land invasion of Japan ("John Stuart Mill").
However, despite the considerable improvement and sophistication provided by Mill to the philosophy of Utilitarianism and the practical usefulness of the 'greatest happiness principle' the theory still suffers from serious flaws.
Dr. Ruut Veenhoven, a professor of Erasmus University, Rotterdam, for instance points out in an article that the 'greatest happiness principle' is particularly problematic when applied at the level of individual choice. This is because we cannot usually foresee the consequences of our actions or whether they would produce happiness or pain but paradoxically the Utilitarian theory deems well-intended behavior to be a-moral if it happens to pan out adversely.…… [Read More]
John Stuart Mill and the idea of equality
Society typically views the triad nexus of politicians, bureaucracies and the financial elite suspiciously, believing they breach the common man’s rights, and, consequently, strives to ensure they behave as it desires. Mills argues, “the government, whether completely responsible to the people or not, will often attempt to control the expression of opinion, except when in doing so it makes itself the organ of the general intolerance of the public (pg. 376).”
The above societal attitude is understandable as this triad nexus has violated people’s will and freedom. As a result, democracies were created in which the common man is allowed to take part in national decision-making. However, in a democratic system the community will govern governmental decisions, giving rise to a self-governing nation. However, Mills warns and asserts that in democratic systems, public opinion (i.e., the majority’s opinion) quells the minority’s views…… [Read More]
All the moralities tell them that it is the duty of women, and all the current sentimentalities that it is their nature, to live for others; to make complete abnegation of themselves, and to have no life but in their affections.
This passage reflects McCann's (2004) analysis of the liberty of an individual as elucidated in Mill's discourses. Mill's comparison of voluntary slavery to women subjugation was also utilized in his analysis of human liberty, wherein he asserted that this practice was synonymous with the 'violation of...fundamental tenets of liberty...voluntary, free choice ceases to exist...the individual "abdicates his liberty" (56). What McCann's analysis revealed was that women subjugation had become deeply integrated in 19th century society, thereby creating the social order wherein submission to male domination and power became voluntary and was tolerated. In the process of voluntarily submitting to patriarchy and male domination, women, in turn, lose their right…… [Read More]
Mill believed that any act may itself be inherently moral, so long as the outcome of that action produces a benign effect. Mill believed that the most ethical act is that which produces the most good, even if the act itself is one which is traditionally considered evil. An example of utilitarian philosophy would include the killing of innocent animals to determine a cure for some infectious disease. And while there are components of this philosophy that would certainly align with Aristotle's definition of ethics, it seems difficult to picture the latter condoning any method to achieve moral behavior, particularly in regards to the following quotation from Nichomachean Ethics. "A man will not live like that by virtue of his humanness, but by virtue of some divine thing within him. His activity is as superior to the activity of the other virtues as this divine thing is to his composite…… [Read More]
Mill agrees that the mischief a person does to himself can affect others, and he finds that it is right to bring to bear moral disapprobation,
henever there is a definite damage, the case moves out of the province of liberty and into that of morality or law. ith reference to that which is merely contingent, however, society can afford to bear the inconvenience (Magid 799-800).
Mill in his work on Liberty proposed a simple principle for determining whether society has a right to limit individual freedom, a principle based on utilitarian concepts and applicable to the individual in his or her dealings with society. that principle can be stated as follows:
The only thing of ultimate value is the happiness of individuals, and individuals can best achieve their happiness in a civilized society when they are left free to pursue their own interest with their own talents as these…… [Read More]
Global terrorism has changed the entire spectrum of tolerance in today's world. Highlighted by the events of 9/11 the facts that even the world's most powerful nation was not immune to the effects of terrorism brought home the fact that there was little defense to the acts of terrorists. The age of innocence in the United States had ended and the rest of the world waited to see how the United States would react (Schorow 2002).
Terrorism has been a part of the world framework for some time but in the United States it had been something that occurred somewhere else. It was not anything that those living within the borders of the United States had to be concerned with. Those types of problems existed elsewhere. In America everyone was safe: until 9/11. 9/11 forced Americans to look at terrorism in a different light and to examine the roots…… [Read More]
Positive Discrimination -- Do We Need it?
For centuries, the global community has strived to eliminate discrimination against minority groups. For centuries, women had been emotionally and/or physically abused; they were prohibited from voting and working. Today, they are allowed to work outside the household, but they are still paid less than their male counterparts. Additionally, the responsibility of raising the children and completing the household chores remains heavily preponderant among the female categories.
The women represent one of the most obvious categories of people discriminated against; but they only represent a mere fraction of the overall population subjected to discrimination. And the grounds for the discrimination are multiple, to include anything and everything from gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, political and religious appurtenance, age or disability.
The modern day society is making intense efforts to ensure that discrimination is eliminated -- or at least decreased to the minimum level…… [Read More]
It offers a good theory as it emphasizes on the production and export of those items for which a country possesses a comparative advantage. Furthermore, through its focus on the reduction of taxes and tariffs in international trade and the adherent practices, the theory of comparative costs has set the basis for the contemporaneous processes of market liberalization and globalization.
But the theory has not been spared from criticism. Oumar Bouare states that "the market price of a commodity does not converge toward its natural price. (Then) the outcome of complete specialization in icardo's framework locks third world and developing countries out of industrialization; and free trade could destroy the industrial base of a country, which in the long run could generate more wealth for the country than an imported product. This might also lock the country out of industrialization." b) in 1848, utilitarian economist John Stuart Mill wrote the…… [Read More]
Such prohibition, Bentham contended, would be a contradiction to the preservation of individual rights. He even goes so far as to signal the necessity for a change in approach to contending with any questions regarding the prescription of rights, here channeled through the words of John Stuart Mill. The remarks seem directed in their derisive tone at the unempirical thinkers espousing the Law of Nature as a singular lens for evaluating human rights.
"Instead of taking up their opinions by intuition, or by ratiocination from premises adopted on a mere rough view, and couched in language so vague that it is impossible to say exactly whether they are true or false, philosophers are now forced to understand one another, to break down the generality of their propositions, and join a precise issue in every dispute." (Mill, 1)
Guided by the central principle that morality may defined as the creation, extension…… [Read More]
Please see "Stake Holder: The Taliban" for more information regarding virtue ethics.
The farmers who are growing poppy plants have a logical stake in this moral dilemma as well. If their crops are destroyed they will have no alternative but to join the Taliban to help settle their debts. They are in a precarious position where they are often forced to grow poppies because they are a very lucrative and traditional cash crop. Their history and culture will be severely affected if their livelihood is destroyed as well. If they functioned as utilitarians, the farmers would look for another alternative to growing poppies or perhaps request a government subsidy since their poppy production kills millions worldwide who abuse their drugs. The farmers likely do not have access to this information however, which makes their position even harder to justify.
The Afghan People
Utilitarianism- Principle. See "Stakeholder: The United States…… [Read More]
Smith believed this would lead to inefficiency.
However, unlike Plato, Smith did not believe that the ideal republic should decide from birth what occupation an individual should follow, rather that the individual must freely choose by his or her own will, how to direct his or her energies and labor in the most efficient and self-interested fashion, which would ultimately result in the advancement of the nation as a whole. Plato's social structure, although not based upon birth, was still based upon a monopoly of philosophers dictating the lives of others according to their state-generated power, unlike Smith's more democratic ideals. Smith's analysis more perfectly echoes that of illiam Petty, who stressed how breaking down tasks, like Smith's pin-manufacturing plant, could generate higher levels of efficiency in economic production. Petty also placed a strong emphasis, as did Smith, upon the vital need of a nation to practice free trade.
Question…… [Read More]
conservative intellectual movement, but also the role of William uckley and William Rusher in the blossoming of the youth conservative movement
Talk about structure of paper, who not strictly chronologically placed (ie hayek before the rest) - in this order for thematic purposes, to enhance the genuiness of the paper (branches of the movement brought up in order of importance to youth conservative revolt) For instance, Hayek had perhaps the greatest impact on the effects of the movement - uckley and Rusher. These individuals, their beliefs, their principles were extremely influential in better understanding the origins, history, and leaders of American conservatism.
Momentous events shape the psyche of an individual as the person matures. A child grows up in poverty vows to never be like his parents, and keeps this inner vow to become a millionaire. A young woman experiences sexual trauma as a teen, and chooses a career that…… [Read More]
Therefore, a country which is able to produce one good with a lower opportunity cost than another country, should specialize in producing that good which will turn into a competitive advantage.
However, when assessing this theory at the level of international trade, it is harder to depict the competitive advantages. The model may seem to be unrealistic. The resources employed in real world are not restrained to labor and the markets in which the goods are supplied are not perfectly competitive. Moreover, there may be countries able to specialize in the production of one or several goods and other countries unable to find any competitive advantage. Other disadvantages are the ones assembled when trying to form a general framework of the labor costs. Due to the fact that these costs are similar within the boundaries of a certain country and vary from one country to another, it is problematical to…… [Read More]
Medical Administration Service for File
ationale in Support of Selection of Heart Transplant ecipient
Because time was of the essence in formulating this decision, this memorandum for the record sets forth the decision-making process and that was used to select the most appropriate candidate for a heart transplantation procedure. It was my responsibility as lead surgeon to select the most appropriate heart transplant recipient from a pool of three candidates, each of whom had suffered from several health-related issues that adversely affected their suitability for the transplant procedure. Therefore, in order to formulate as subjective an analysis as possible in a timely fashion, a utilitarian ethical analytical approach was used to identify the candidate that held the most promise of using the gift of additional life from the heart donor to its maximum advantage. The utilitarian ethical analysis showed that of the three potential heart transplant candidates, the 12-year-old…… [Read More]
foundational skills graduate program. If trouble translating ideas paper, evaluate analysis ideas. Clear, structured, concise writing free grammar spelling errors essential. For discussion, read writing sample provided propose improve writing.
Critiquing a piece of writing: Death penalty response
Perhaps the first, most obvious critique of this piece of writing is that the author's position on the issue of capital punishment is extremely unclear. The author begins by stating that America is one of the only nations in the world that still executes its citizens, suggesting he or she is opposed to the death penalty. The author compares the U.S. To ussia and China, two nations with terrible human rights records. True, if ussia and China continue to execute criminals, this hardly speaks well of the practice -- but the author at first seems to imply that the U.S. is worse than these two nations, stating that the U.S. executes more…… [Read More]
The direct harm the other individual ultimately determines the rightness or wrongness of the individual's actions and decisions.
Applied in the Schiavo case, deontology then considers the decision to deprive Schiavo of the feeding tubes that sustains her life as not a permissible act. It is true that with Schiavo's death, both her husband and family will not be aggrieved or directly harmed with her death; instead, both parties will feel relief with the eventual decision to 'end' Schiavo's physical suffering. Her death will not cause any detriment to the lives of her husband and family, making Schiavo's death ethical, to the extent that it relieved Schiavo from the physical suffering she experiences, and her family from worrying about her condition and the continuous financial burden they experienced as a result of her prolonged hospitalization. However, despite these arguments, the decision to discontinue her life support was made by her…… [Read More]
Mill take issue with the Puritans? Explain.
Famed government theoretician John Stuart Mill took great exception with the Puritans who traveled to the New orld in order to start a community based upon similar fanatical religious beliefs. The reason that he took such issue with the Puritans is that they used religion as a basis of government but worse than this they used that religious intolerance in order to oppress and marginalize others. The Puritans made their laws based upon the assertion that their restriction encouraged moral behavior, but in doing so they took away each person's right to make individual choices. Mill wrote, "ith respect to what is said of the necessity of protecting society from the bad example set to others by the vicious or the self-indulgent; it is true that bad example may have a pernicious effect, especially the example of doing wrong to others with impunity…… [Read More]
Robert Nozick's Entitlement Theory asserts that free market exchanges are manifestations of society's respect for people as equal -- an economic phenomenon that is given a moral dimension/explanation. This theory is hinged on three principles: transfer principle, acquisition principle, and rectification principle. The first principle holds the argument that all holdings or properties freely acquired from others are considered justly acquired. In the same vein of argument, the second principle posits that people are entitled to have holdings/properties, so long as they are acquired in a just manner. Lastly, an "injustice" committed can be rectified by giving the property back to its rightful owner (i.e., a property unjustly acquired can be corrected by returning it back to the original owner/first owner).
John Rawls' theory of distributive justice contains within its argument the principles of liberty and difference. In his theory, Rawls argues that the principles of justice determine how the…… [Read More]
According to Freud, human societies require people to give up many of their most natural instincts and to replace their natural desires with the need to satisfy the "false standards of measurement" such as the "power, success and wealth [that they seek] for themselves and admire & #8230; in others, and that [as a result,] they underestimate what is of true value in life." Fred suggested that the need to live up to the standards and expectations set by society causes "too many pains, disappointments and impossible tasks" and that "to bear it we cannot dispense with palliative measures." By that, Freud meant that all of the psychological mechanisms, substitutions, and escapes that cause psychological problems and that often prevent human happiness. These ideas introduced by Freud about the psychological price paid by people living in society would later be part of the views of several other 20th century sociological…… [Read More]
The end result of Swaraj remains key to Satyagraha, however. Just as Kant and Mills championed the rights of individuals over the rights of governments, so too did Gandhi. Gandhi's philosophy was never intended to create a political state or states on the subcontinent. Instead Gandhi sought to actually and symbolically liberate the individual Indian from an oppressive state of being. The average Indian was beholden both to the Raj and also to a socially stratified, outmoded society that hindered religious and personal freedom.
Thus, liberation was to be experienced not only in the liberation of Indians from colonial rule but also in the liberation of Indians from the caste system. To Gandhi, colonialism poisoned the individual spirit and prohibited personal liberty. Overthrowing colonialism could never have depended on Duragraha, political protest borne of anger. Satyagraha is the only ethical means to accomplish the goals of liberation. Gandhi was also…… [Read More]
All organizations and business have some form of ethical culture to carry out their goals, which cannot be inconsistent with the aims of utilitarianism. All organizations aim at the pleasure of achieving or creating something. This line of thought can be strictly infused into the awareness of employees during meetings or seminars. The goals of the theory may also be infused into new employees as part of their orientation. Existing employees may be promoted on the basis of their best contribution to organizational goals and the welfare of fellow employees. These are measurable criteria and a source of motivation to other employees.
The utilitarian theory necessarily states that it is an employee's duty to perform and behave in the best possible way to benefit the business, fellow employees, society and himself or herself. Consequently, he or she has the right to expect the same benefits from the organization, fellow employees,…… [Read More]