Philosophy 2070E Lecture Notes - Rule Utilitarianism, Unapologetic

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Right actions are those that produce the greatest balance of happiness over unhappiness, with each persons happiness counted the same. Hedonism- pleasure is the ultimate good and pain is the ultimate evil. Someone who you think is your friend is ridiculing you behind your back. You never know but so you never feel pain, but you are still being made a fool of and you suffer no unhappiness. A promising guitar players hands are injured in a car accident and he can no longer play. Hedonists would say this is bad because it causes pain and eliminates his source for joy. But suppose he finds just as much enjoyment in something else, like watching tv. Hedonists would say that frustration is only caused when the guitar player thinks of what could have been. But this doesn"t really eliminate the tragedy by simply getting him to cheer up.