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PHL265 Hobbes response to the Foole.docx

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Department
Philosophy
Course Code
PHL265H1
Professor
A Ripstein

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PHL265The Rationality of RuleFollowing Hobbes Dispute with the FooleGregory Kavka SU Oct 30 2011The Foole hath sayd in his heart there is no such thing as justice argues that it is sometimes rational to violate an agreement that your partner has kept the foole has claimed that not keeping covenants was not against reason when it conduced to ones benefit SO once the other party to an agreement has complied you will sometimes benefit more by breaking the agreement than by keeping it when this is so it is rational though unjust to violate the agreementHobbes has 2 arguments 1 Any fact that tendeth to his the agents own destruction but turns out to the agents benefit by some accident which he could not expect is not a reasonable oneevery person needs the cooperation of others to escape the state of nature survive and live decently a person who breaks his covenant cannot be in society Foole Argues whenever I expect to gain more by unilaterally violating than keeping an agreement it is rational to do so Hobbes argues the costs of error loss of others future cooperation is high compared to the likely gains of violation Or Foole Argues it is rational for me to unilaterally violate an agreement on whatever occasions I will and so benefit more by violating than by keeping it Hobbes replies that we never know at the time of action whether the agreement is one of these types of agreements in lacking this knowledge the risks and gains outweigh the violation of the agreement laws of nature promises each individual better outcomes over time than choosing actions on a casebycase basis all laws of nature have two parts a main clause expressing a basic moral prohibition and an escape clause that allows the agent to act in the prohibited manner if others are doing so Hobbes system prohibits offensive violations of core moral rules but allows defensive violations of those same rules to protect the agent from being taken advantage of by others who violateSo this is a question about an offense on the third law of nature keeping ones covenant the third law of nature is a corollary of the first and fundamental law which prescribes seeking peace Hobbes answers if you act in a way that shows a lack of peaceful intentions others will not react peaceably to you what matters to the
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