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The Good and the Right

The Good and the Right

Second slideshow for a course on Environmental Ethics.

GeorgeMatthews

February 19, 2017
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  1. The Good -vs- the Right
    two approaches to ethics
    George Matthews
    CC 2019

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  2. Two Moral Universals

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  3. Two Moral Universals
    ! Avoid harming others and try to do good
    things for them.

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  4. Two Moral Universals
    ! Avoid harming others and try to do good
    things for them.
    ! Do the right thing and don’t do what is
    wrong.

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  5. Question of the Day
    Is it ever wrong to do what is good?

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  6. What should you do?

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  7. What should you do?
    the runaway train car
    You are standing next to a switch on a train
    track when a runaway train car approaches.
    Five children are playing on the track. If you
    do nothing they will be killed. If you throw
    the switch, the train will be diverted but will
    kill one man working on the other track.

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  8. What should you do?

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  9. What should you do?
    another runaway train car
    You are standing on a bridge over a train
    track when a runaway train car approaches.
    Five children are playing on the track. If you
    do nothing they will be hit by the train car
    and killed. There is a large man standing
    next to you. If you push him onto the tracks,
    the train car will derail and not hit the
    children but will kill him.

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  10. The Ethics of the Good

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  11. The Ethics of the Good

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  12. The Ethics of the Good
    The point of ethics is to make life better – more
    pleasure, satisfaction, happiness, benefit, welfare for
    more people.

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  13. The Ethics of the Good
    The point of ethics is to make life better – more
    pleasure, satisfaction, happiness, benefit, welfare for
    more people.
    The outcomes of our actions determine their moral
    worth.

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  14. The Ethics of the Good
    The point of ethics is to make life better – more
    pleasure, satisfaction, happiness, benefit, welfare for
    more people.
    The outcomes of our actions determine their moral
    worth.
    Moral thinking is future-oriented, not concerned
    with motives or the intrinsic nature of our acts.

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  15. Utilitarianism

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  16. Utilitarianism

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  17. Utilitarianism
    Assess the situation at hand . . .

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  18. Utilitarianism
    Assess the situation at hand . . .
    ! Figure out all possible relevant actions.

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  19. Utilitarianism
    Assess the situation at hand . . .
    ! Figure out all possible relevant actions.
    ! Calculate their likely costs and benefits to all who
    will be affected by each.

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  20. Utilitarianism
    Assess the situation at hand . . .
    ! Figure out all possible relevant actions.
    ! Calculate their likely costs and benefits to all who
    will be affected by each.
    ! Choose the action that produces the greatest overall
    benefit and least overall harm.

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  21. Some utilitarian policies
    Couples can only have one child.

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  22. Some utilitarian policies
    Private jets can no longer land at US airports.

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  23. Some utilitarian policies
    Polluting industry should be sited where there are less people around.

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  24. The Ethics of Right

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  25. The Ethics of Right

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  26. The Ethics of Right
    Ethical action is an end in itself, not a means to an
    end.

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  27. The Ethics of Right
    Ethical action is an end in itself, not a means to an
    end.
    The moral worth of an act is inherent in that act.

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  28. The Ethics of Right
    Ethical action is an end in itself, not a means to an
    end.
    The moral worth of an act is inherent in that act.
    Moral thinking is past-oriented, concerned with our
    motives and the intrinsic nature of our acts, but not
    with their outcomes.

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  29. Kantian Ethics

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  30. Kantian Ethics

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  31. Kantian Ethics
    Assess the situation at hand . . .

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  32. Kantian Ethics
    Assess the situation at hand . . .
    ! For each possible response, would it make sense as
    a universal law? If not don’t do it.

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  33. Kantian Ethics
    Assess the situation at hand . . .
    ! For each possible response, would it make sense as
    a universal law? If not don’t do it.
    ! Does it involve treating anyone as a means to an
    end? If so don’t do it.

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  34. Kantian Ethics
    Assess the situation at hand . . .
    ! For each possible response, would it make sense as
    a universal law? If not don’t do it.
    ! Does it involve treating anyone as a means to an
    end? If so don’t do it.
    ! Is it done out of respect for others, just because it is
    right? If so do it.

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  35. Three Categories of Rights

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  36. Three Categories of Rights
    1. Civic/Political rights
    physical and civil security – no slavery, equal treatment before
    law

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  37. Three Categories of Rights
    1. Civic/Political rights
    physical and civil security – no slavery, equal treatment before
    law
    individual liberties – speech, assembly, participation, ownership

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  38. Three Categories of Rights
    1. Civic/Political rights
    physical and civil security – no slavery, equal treatment before
    law
    individual liberties – speech, assembly, participation, ownership

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  39. Three Categories of Rights
    1. Civic/Political rights
    physical and civil security – no slavery, equal treatment before
    law
    individual liberties – speech, assembly, participation, ownership
    2. Social/Economic rights
    assurance that social needs are met – shelter, healthcare,
    education, nutrition

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  40. Three Categories of Rights
    1. Civic/Political rights
    physical and civil security – no slavery, equal treatment before
    law
    individual liberties – speech, assembly, participation, ownership
    2. Social/Economic rights
    assurance that social needs are met – shelter, healthcare,
    education, nutrition
    assurance that economic needs are met – fair wages, adequate
    working conditions, social safety net

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  41. Three Categories of Rights
    1. Civic/Political rights
    physical and civil security – no slavery, equal treatment before
    law
    individual liberties – speech, assembly, participation, ownership
    2. Social/Economic rights
    assurance that social needs are met – shelter, healthcare,
    education, nutrition
    assurance that economic needs are met – fair wages, adequate
    working conditions, social safety net

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  42. Three Categories of Rights
    1. Civic/Political rights
    physical and civil security – no slavery, equal treatment before
    law
    individual liberties – speech, assembly, participation, ownership
    2. Social/Economic rights
    assurance that social needs are met – shelter, healthcare,
    education, nutrition
    assurance that economic needs are met – fair wages, adequate
    working conditions, social safety net
    3. Collective/Developmental rights
    self-determination – political status, resources, sustainability

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  43. Three Categories of Rights
    1. Civic/Political rights
    physical and civil security – no slavery, equal treatment before
    law
    individual liberties – speech, assembly, participation, ownership
    2. Social/Economic rights
    assurance that social needs are met – shelter, healthcare,
    education, nutrition
    assurance that economic needs are met – fair wages, adequate
    working conditions, social safety net
    3. Collective/Developmental rights
    self-determination – political status, resources, sustainability
    rights of ethnic and religious minorities – culture,
    communication, religion

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