Ethics Cheat Sheet Final
Ethics cheat sheet...
Philosophy -> Philos/Sophia (Love/Wisdom). Eros – erotic love. Agape – humanly love -> love your neighbor, unconditional love. Socrates – the unexamined life is not worth living. Aristotle – philosophical life -> pursuit of truth and wisdom, passionate moral and intellectual integrity. John Lock – love truth for truths sake. B. Russell (1912) – Philosophy breaks no bread, but humans do not live on bread alone, (1957) – Philosophy can cure the worlds ills. William James – squirrel around the tree analogy. Definitions are very important. Fallacy of Equivocation – all rivers have banks, all banks have money, therefore, all rivers have money -> depends on definition of banks. Abortion Argument – it is morally wrong to kill innocent human beings, abortion is an act of killing an innocent human being, therefore abortion is morally wrong. ->> it is morally wrong to kill to intentionally kill innocent human beings, abortion is an act of intentionally killing an innocent human being. Terry Schiavo (potential person) – brain dead or not? Argument: it is morally wrong to intentionally kill potential persons -> same as abortion argument. Branches of Philosophy: Metaphysics – what is real, a human being, a person, a potential person; Epistemology – how do you know that, why is that the right account, justification, definition; Axiology (Value Theory) – What is good, right, just, beautiful, valuable; Logic – what is a good argument. Chapter 1: Minimum Conception of Reality – what would the minimum be; Baby Theresa – Anencephaly, has no autonomic function -> Benefits argument – produce the most benefits BUT people are ends themselves and not means, wrongfulness of killing; Jodie and Mary – conjoined twins, save Jodie by killing Mary ->Benefits argument – (same); Tracy Lattimer – cerebral palsy, father kills her to end suffering -> Benefits argument – (same); Benefits Argument = Utilitarianism, People as ends = Kantianism, both provide plausible theories of morality. Chapter 2 (C. Relativism): Descriptive vs. Normative Ethics -> Descriptive – describing things, different cultures have different moral codes, factual claims, “is” statements -> Texas is supportive of the death penalty; Normative – every culture has a moral code we ought to accept in full (b.s.) -> Texas ought to be supportive of the death penalty; Enthymeme – second premise is left out; Syllogism – two premises and a conclusion; Why C. Relativism can’t be correct – if it is true, we are unable to legitimately criticize others, not even ourselves, also makes the notion of moral progress impossible (slavery), no cultural homogeny (president, abortion, etc), fluid cultures. Chapter 3 (Subjectivism): Simple Subjectivism – ethical opinions are your own personal preference (ice cream); next step from c. relativism; two objections -> 1) Doesn’t account for disagreements, 2) SS makes one infallible; Logical Positivism – two meaningful sorts of statements -> 1) Analytic (all triangles have 3 sides – predicate is included in subject – all three sided figures have three sides) 2) Synthetic (not definitional claims, empirical investigational clams); Emotivism – there are moral facts in the same way that there are facts about stars, our values are nothing more than the expression of our subjective feelings -> these create a false dichotomy, third choice -> moral truths are truths of reason, that is, a moral judgment is true if it is backed by better reasons than the alternative; Are there proofs in ethics -> any “facts” based on theory (age of the earth). Chapter 4 (Morality and Religion): Divine Command Theory – X is morally correct mean God commands X, X is morally wrong means God forbids X -> lot of interpretation; Socrates viewpoint – Euthyphro -> early version of DCT, What is pious -> what is dear to all the gods; Two responses to DCT – 1) God’s universe response -> our universe is unique and our moral rules follow from that 2) Epistemic access ->how can we gain moral knowledge, God gives access to moral knowledge, morality can’t be found on one’s own; Natural Law Theory – All living things have a purpose, Since we naturally are a certain kind of living thing, we ought to live a life consistent with that purpose, We can discern this purpose through the dictates of reason (Aquinas), Rejections to NLT -> 1) Natural can be bad (disease), 2) it confuses “is” and “ought” 3) largely rejected now because of science. Chapter 5 (Psychological Egoism): 2 parts of PE – 1) Descriptive Claim -> PE is a psychological (descriptive) theory that states that as a matter of psychological fact, people will always act in their perceived best interest 2) Ethical Egoism is a normative ethical theory that states people should always act in their rational self interest; Invisible Hand/ Wealth of Nations (Adam Smith) – unintended social benefits resulting from individual actions; Kant – “ought implies can” principle; Ethical vs Psychological Egoism – EE claims that each person ought to pursue his own self interest exclusively, PE by contrast, asserts that each person does in fact pursue his own self interest exclusively. Social Contract Theory: Thomas Hobbes (1651) – Leviathan (sea monster, modern word means whale); a government like a Leviathan (“State of Nature”) – Equality of need, Scarcity of resources (economics is the study of allocation of scarce resources, scarcity typically determines value), Rough equality of power, Limited altruism -> people are mainly egoistic, “War of all against all” (life is a solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short), we escape the state of nature by agreeing to a social contract; SCT – “I won’t steal from you if you don’t steal from me,” Two types of liberty -> 1) Negative Liberty (freedom from interference, the right to be left alone, property rights, libertarians) 2) Positive Liberty (freedom to accomplish reasonable ends, the right to be provided with certain opportunities, welfare rights, socialists); Prisoners Dilemna – rat or stay mum to affect prison sentence; Egoist and Altruist (4 scenarios -> everyone else + me = x) – 1) Egoist +Egoist = state of nature 2) Egoist + Altruist = suckers world 3) Altruist + Egoist = best of all worlds 4) Altruist + Altruist = SCT, only stable world; “Morality consists in the set of rules governing behavior that rational people will accept on the condition that others accept them as well” -> according to SCT, people who can’t make the SC have no moral rights; John Rawls -> Theory of Justice (1971) – has a version of SCT, viewed as an improvement over Hobbes, not only rational but fair, justice as fairness, original position (“behind the veil of ignorance”). Utilitarianism: Classical U (3 components) – 1) Consequentialist component (determines if an action is morally correct by judging the ends NOT the means) 2) Utility component (something counts as a utility in determining what a good end is -> what counts as a good result) 3) Equal consideration component (most often downplayed when people look at the theory, ethical egoism has no equal consideration component); Jeremy Bentham (1780s) – everyone should have a benefit to equal consideration, “Offenses Against Ones Self”; What’s the right thing to do (Sandel Video) – Categorical -> locates morality in certain absolute moral truths, rights and duties -> positive and negative rights will always be in conflict with each other, government tries to balance p and n rights; McCloskey Argument – innocent persons vs victims of the mob (rape->riots->utilitarian bears false witness to end riots); Objections to Utilitarianism – McCloskey Argument, Murderer looking for your brother argument (if you lie, you are morally wrong), Good vs Right argument (pleasure vs happiness), are consequences all that matter -> no, Angeline York case (made to take lewd picture after complaining of assault to police, if the officers pleasure outweighed York’s displeasure then it is morally acceptable according to utilitarianism), peeping tom argument, utilitarianism as too demanding (tribal egoism -> basically cultural egoism, if all human lives are equally valuable, why do we live our lives the way we do (cars, luxuries, movies,etc)); Act vs Rule Utilitarianism – Act is very demanding -> must gain tremendous amounts of info and details to make any decision, Rule -> make rules instead of taking it on an act-by-act basis, leading to perhaps better results; Trolley car problem – flip a switch and kill one instead of five ->requires calculation, not so emotional/ Toss a fat man off of the bridge -> still killing one instead of five (considered murder by 95%, emotional “yuck” factor, if the example is made yucky enough, almost no one makes the utilitarian calculations, which leads to a completely different answer); Richard Brandt – what would happen if 95% of the population mirrored my actions -> my fair share -> kids will still die, not everyone will pull their weight. Kant/ Deontology: Kant – radical anti-consequentialist, worried about his own morality like Socrates; Absolute moral rules – Elizabeth Anscomb -> protested Truman’s honorary degree because he killed so many by dropping atomic bomb, wrong is wrong no matter what according to her, torture and war crimes -> always wrong?, Truman’s Defense -> Truman had to end the war to stop Japanese from killing more people including noncombatants (army in Japan and abroad), drop the bomb -> 100k-200k Japanese deaths, Invade mainland ->200k-1mil Japanese deaths, Do Nothing -> 20000 deaths/week; Hypothetical Imperative – “if you want x you ought to do y”; Categorical Imperative –“do y” (ought is implied); 2 versions of Kant (part of categorical imperative) – 1)Universal law 2) People are ends in themselves; Punishment – Kant (retribution) -> punish the guilty because the guilty deserve it (proportionality), Utilitarians (deterrence) -> punish the guilty to deter others, punish
the guilty to prevent them from harming others (Incapacitation), rehabilitation to fix the guilty and rehabilitate them (Kant would oppose all of these); Billy Ochoa – received 326 years to life without parole for $1200 welfare fraud because of three strike law in CA; WD Ross – moderate deontologist, prima facie duties (at first glance) i.e. fidelity, reparation, beneficence, non-maleficence, Ross was an intuitionist -> moral intuitions will guide you; James Rachels – multiple strategies utilitarianism aka indirect utilitarianism, 3 types of utilitarianism -> Act (act-by-act basis), Rule (absolute moral rules), Indirect (general principles of morality, Ross+virtue+utility, don’t use the principle of utility unless there is a conflict; Deontological theories – 1)Kant -> Categorical Imperative, absolute moral rules 2) Ross – prima facie duties 3) Ross + Kantian respect for persons 4)Ross and human autonomy (Alan Gewirth); Carol Giligan (feminism) – “In a Different Voice”, Liberals = Similarity vs Radicals = Difference; Kohlberg – worked with Piaget on developmental stages, we have moral stages that we progress through; Gilligan – stages of ethical care -> not utilitarian. Aristotle and Ethics: Aristotle – wrote N. Ethics for Nicomachus -> very common Greek name, wrote straight works and dialogues but all are lost, exist only as unpolished notes; Problems with Greek translations – Eudaimonia (happiness not pleasure) -> may be better translated as a successful life (not money) or living well (a life of human flourishing and deep satisfaction), Arete (virtue or excellence) ->character traits that allow one to live well (benevolence, kindness, honesty, loyalty, courage, etc); Rachels on Aristotle – Ethics of virtue (what kind of person do I want to be/ what character traits do I wish to acquire) vs Ethics of Right Action (what is the right action to perform -> Ethical Egoism, Utilitarian, Kantianism, Social Contract Theory); Cowardice->Courage->Foolhardy – too much or too little, therefore virtue is a means between two extremes; Rachels incompleteness problem – Ethics of virtue is incomplete (C. Murray – work is a necessary evil); Aristotle the philosopher – student of Plato at the Academy, Aristotle formed the Lyceum after Plato’s death; Plato’s theory was a bit nutty – Heraclitus and Cratylus -> physical world is in a state of flux, Parminedes and Zeno -> change is an illusion (Zeno’s paradox -> shoot an arrow at a wall, always has half way to go), Plato -> physical world is unknowable (can only know the forms), Aristotle tried to remedy these with common sense physics and science (the world that WE live in) and change is between two extremes from a to b; The Categories/ 4 Causes – 1) Material (what is it made of) 2)Efficienc (how did it come into being) 3)Formal (what is its structure) 4)Final (telos); Potentiality/Actuality – first potentiality (acorn), second potentiality/first actuality (seedling), second actuality (oak tree); Telos of humans is rationality – live in accordance with its purpose. Nicomachean Ethics: Background – in book 1 Aristotle endorses a life of political or practical activity; in book 10 he endorses a life of philosophical contemplation; 5 Positions -> 1)actually endorses book 1 2) actually endorses book 10 3)dominant end -> practical activity/ politics (political scientists) 4) dominant end -> life of philosophical contemplation (philosophers) 5) inclusivist view -> incorporate multiple ends into eudaimonia. Book 1/10 – endoxa -> opinion of the wise or many, aporia -> puzzles these views create, completeness -> no holes in eudaimonia, telos -> finality; Function Argument – human good turns out to be an activity of the soul (psyche) in accordance with virtue (arête); humans = rational animals; moral luck -> getting dealt a good hand. Book 10 (Ch 6-9) – Aspects of happiness -> 1) contemplative life 2) political life 3) pleasure 4) external goods (moral luck) 5) friendship 6) self-sufficient/ complete; Aristotle believed animals could not contemplate ->not eudaimonia; Inclusivist view – multiple ends (see aspects of happiness). Book 3 – 2 kinds of virtue -> intellectual and moral; virtue is a habit; Virtuous vs Vicious -> knows, does (chart); Virtuous vs Temperate vs Intemperate vs Vicious -> knows, wants, does (chart); Virtue takes action but it must be habitual action; What is virtue -> passions (anger, fear, appetite), Faculties (becoming angry), States of Character (violently angry or weakly angry ->too much or too little), virtues are not passions or faculties, must be states of character; to be truly good you must do the right thing, to the right person, to the right extent, at the right time, with the right motive, and in the right way; Mike McQueary story; Involuntary vs Voluntary Actions – involuntary (compulsion -> external (not responsible), internal (responsible); Ignorance (must be sorry, ignorance of universals is no excuse, ignorance of particulars may be an excuse; McNaughton Rule (crazy people law -> not responsible if you don’t know what you are doing); Andrea Yates (baby Killer). Kant and Kant’s Ethics: Kant overall – Most fertile writing period in the 1780s, Empiricists (a posteriori -> Locke, Hume, Berkeley), Uilitarians (Bentham, J. Mill, J.S. Mill ->falls under empiricism), all knowledge is derived from sense perception -> born a blank slate and we experience things, Rationalists (Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz -> perhaps some knowledge-if not most or all- is NOT derived from sense perception but rather through reason alone, very strongly believed in reason as a process to knowledge, A priori -> innate ideas); Influenced by Hume – Hume’s fork (all meaningful claims are either -> 1) relations of ideas (triangles have three sides -> meaning of words) 2) Matters of fact (the door is open -> require empirical investigation)), Definitions -> 1) all effects have a cause (true relation of ideas but..) 2) all events have a cause (not a true relation of ideas, not a true matter of fact) 3) adultery is wrong (not a true relation of ideas, not a true matter of fact); Kant’s Copernican Revolution (analytic and synthetic a priori and a posterioi) – Analytic -> predicate adds nothing new, Synthetic -> predicate adds something new, A priori -> known before experience, A posteriori -> known after experience; Rationalists are wrong because concepts without sensible intuitions are empty, Empiricists are wrong because sensible intuitions without concepts are blind; Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals: Categorical Theory – establishment of the supreme principle of morality; Synthetic A priori, Categorical Imperative and an a priori part; Only thing that is intrinsically good is good will -> courage is only good if it is done with a good will (a courageous terrorist is bad), Only thing that matters is trying to do the right thing. Part One (Concept of Duty) – Good will and duty -> For the sake of duty vs in conformity with duty (praise but not esteem); Three General Propositions – 1)A moral action has moral worth, not when done form inclination or self-interest, but from duty alone 2) An action from duty has moral worth not from aim but from maxim or principle 3) Duty is a necessity of an action from respect for the moral law or Duty is the necessity to act out of reverence for the law (not trying to accomplish something). Part Two – Hypothetical (not necessity, maybe true, true now, problematically -> not true right now but could be in the future) vs Categorical (necessity, true as a matter of necessity, synthetic a priori); Self/ Perfect -> suicide, Self/ Imperfect -> Slacker, Others/ Perfect -> lie for a loan, Others/ Imperfect -> Charity; Moral decision – Should I do x, should everyone in my situation do x, can I will that everyone in my situation does x, if no then I cannot do x; Aristotle has in influence in #3 – virtue must be active (slackers cannot be active); Humans are ends in themselves; Autonomous self (acting out of moral duty, free will towards moral duty) vs Heteronomous self (reacting to desires, inclinations). John Stuart Mill: Bentham – radical, Mill – utilitarian, WD Ross – Intuitionist, Locke – empiricist; Mill on Bentham – second principles (privacy vs terrorism) conflict, must find a first principle; Utilitarianism – So act that the rule on which thou actest would admit of being adopted as a law by all rational beings; Chapter 2 – Swine argument (Mill), South Sea Islanders (Kant); Bentham – quantitative hedonism, Mill – qualitative eudaimonism, Rawls – Aristotelean principle -> tic tac toe or chess, Human being dissatisfied vs pig satisfied, Socrates dissatisfied vs fool satisfied; On Liberty – the Harm Principle -> Only allowed to interfere with peoples lives to prevent harm, Utilitarianism as a defense of negative liberty, Paternalism -> government should interfere to protect you (children), You can harm people by action or inaction, Permanent interests of man as a progressive being -> sometimes you have to take the short term hit (integration of military), freedom of thought, speech, and assembly -> these should be unqualified and absolute, the truth of an opinion is part of its utility.