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W1L2.doc

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Department
Philosophy
Course
Philosophy 2801F/G
Professor
Lawson
Semester
Fall

Description
W1L2 - UTILITARIANISM COMPETING THEORIES OF JUSTICE • moral and political theory, figure out whats good (pleasure, welfare) do as much of it as you can with as many people, prominent in 19th century • you were either a utilitarian or you weren't, Rawls came up with an in between • a consequentialist theory, any theory that determines the right or wrong of an action exclusively by the consequences • deontology - main competitor to consequentialism - duty based, rightness or wrong- ness of actions is based on whether it succeeds to moral principles. results don't really matter you just have to make sure you're following the moral principles • virtue ethics: the focus is on character rather than on principles, determined by what a virtuous person would do, if you act the way they do than you're doing the right thing value theory (axiology) - theory about what is good, what is intrinsically good • • - intrinsic vs extrinsic - normative ethical theory - view of how we ought to act so that we can bring about a • good thing (rule about how to act) • for utilitarianism the value theory varies, normative ethical value theory is what makes it utilitarianism - greatest good for the greatest number • act utilitarianism(life goes on one action at a time) - rule utilitarianism (one set of rules that benefit all the people all the time- policies, institutions) THE BENEFITS • its secular, not God in these decisions, purely based on outcomes. • Provides concrete plausible measurable means to happiness from actions, allows for progress • straightforward way to solve moral problems, clear way to solve moral dilemmas • progressive historically against prejudice and superstition PROBLEMS • 1. welfare hedonism - welfare simply consists of people having euphoric state of minds - anything you think is good is only good if it presents this state of mind. Base desires, doesn't allow for elitism. The problem is what we value is brought down to simple things. • 2. non-hedonistic mental state utility - valuable things th
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