Philosophy 320 Ethics Final
Card Set Information
Philosophy 320 Ethics Final
Ethics final study cards
Greek historian. Father of political realism,
involved in the conflict between Athens and Melos. Justice isn’t as important
as the expansion of power.
There is more to living then following
conventions. Try and find the truth about how to live. Main character in the
gorgias. He says main things to gorgias that he asks are you sure about this.
He says its better to suffer an evil then to do an evil. He also says if you do
an evil you ought to be punished. Notable for his style of Defense Dialectic
and critique of rhetoric.
Is the author of gorgias when he teaches that
rhetoric is not an art
when we think about what it is to be a
human being we can learn quite a bit when you think about what it is to be
this, that, or the other species.
-also interested in the ecosystem of other species. Started to
study the human ecosystem and the need for a grounded community.
-Principle of equality, and
: rhetoric is not an art it is just
a flourish, a form of flattery. Gorgias refutes that rhetoric is an art.
Marcus Tullius Cicero argues that mercy is a
virtue, when he says “of all thy virtues none is more marvelous or more
graceful than thy mercy” Most influential Roman philosopher.
virtue is his own reward while vice is its own
punishment. Sees evil as privation, “a distortion of the good”
aquinas says that misericordia is more important
than justice and or generosity. Thinks that a seriously unjust law is a kind of
violence. Mercy above all, even justice. Principle of Double Effect, and law
based on ethics.
character Portia praises mercy even above justice
for the same reasons as aquinas
)- argues that animals are here for us. So its
totally fine to eat meat. Common good= kingdom of ends. Distinction between
perfect versus imperfect duties. Emphasis on anthropocentrism.
Principle of Respect. “I and Thou,” treat
everyone as “Thou,” a familiar friend in an informal manner. Jewish thinker.
Treat everyone as as an end, mentioned by MLK.
australian moral professor at Princeton.
Introduced the word speciesism which is assigning different rights to different
animals based solely on their species. Says there are some charities that
are more important to give to then others. Is a huge animal right guy.
Makes the case that animals have more of a right to live then people with
severe special needs. Wants us to be vegetarians. Singer also makes
the argument that in emergency situations sometimes you need to increase
contributions to meet the needs. Conventional morality does not support this
and therefore should be changed. Things of equal interest need equal
: If a monkey wants the same thing as you, best to flip a
critiques Singers vegetarian schema. He argues
that humans not animals can achieve moral insight and can apply this insight to
specific situations. Humans act on conscious. Humans even if mentally disabled
have the potential for moral agency and animals never have the potential for
Critiques Singers greater evil rule, and
justice versus generosity. Says that utilitarian principle is wholly
forward looking however entitlements are not simply forward looking therefore
ger is not a satisfactory approach to distributive justice. He then makes the
case that conventional morality is better than utilitarianism. Argues that
Singer’s criticism of conventional morality overlooks the role of generosity as
an imperfect duty.
American Philosopher. Known for political
philosophy and stating that the most reasonable principles of justice are ones
that almost everyone would accept and agree too from a fair position. He
suggests setting up a structure where there are political principles and
principles for exchanges between individuals and after that individuals should
be free to advance their permissible ends.
a current philosopher who focuses on natural law.
He is currently working on the law and philosophy of marriage. He thinks the
most important political issue today is preserving the institution of marriage.
Argues that authentic sexual community is the two in one flesh union,
open to life which defines marriage.
agrees with singer that we all have a moral
obligation to use surplus wealth to help those in need. And that we should put
a lot of time and thought into giving. Tollefsen however argues
that there is no way to really measure if one charity is better than another
for instance art or medical. So tollefsen say you must give in a way that
is effective fair, and in accordance with your own vocations. He says
that charitable giving like all else that one does should collide with ones
commitments, relationships and understanding of ones life as a whole. EX
you have the money to give to either Haiti or to the hospital you have been
volunteering at, it is ok to choose the hospital even though Haiti might need
the divine comedy talks about the 9 circles of
Hell. Italian poet, vividly portrays the vice of uncontrolled anger.
stresses the role of the virtues in helping one to
live and make sense of one’s life in terms of a unifying story.
has the natural law view of the axiology of life.
Also called the cosmos view. Says that everything in the universe has intrinsic
value and instrumental value as well. Bit it is ordered. Some things have
higher intrinsic value than others. Advocates the cosmos model as a way of
mapping the moral community.
taking into account perspective and results. Not
ignoring either. Teleological is only result centered and deontological is
perspective centered. Ethics depends on our values (the study of
philosophical value). Note
: intrinsic and instrumental goods are
part of Axiology.
knowledge, friendship, sexual union, beauty, life,
happiness. Basic goods are core elements of what it is to be human being.
Something is a basic good only if it is incommensurable, and non-fungible. Must
meet three criteria
: universal appeal, pass the no price test, an invitation
the branch of ethics that explores the nature of
rights and duties
when something is good in and of itself. Ie
when something is good for things ie a car is
good for getting you places. (Means)
- if there are human rights what is
there basis? (most natural law thinkers come to be from trying to figure out
human rights.) simply as being a human being I have a claim that is morally
a right is a claim to something against someone
that is recognized by law or morality.
having no common standard of judgement
one cannot be replaced by another without loss
“no price test”
referring to basic goods there is no price that
can buy them ie you cannot buy true friendship no matter how much you pay.
is the whole range of material and cultural
conditions that help us to realize the basic goods, together with the basic
goods themselves. Or shared human flourishing.
Kants idea for the common good
the common good will be achieved when we have a
kingdom of ends. And as long as we are working towards the kingdom of ends then
we are working towards a good. Advocates the principle of solidarity, and
explains that sometimes we must sacrifice a few for the good of the many.
gives decision making powers to the larger
masses rather than the smaller powerful groups. The economic
self-determination needed to make political democracy
a type of divine wisdom as directing all actions
: Aquinas states it is a type of ideal model plan existing in the
law: natural vs. positive
Positive law- laws are created
by government or a king or society
Natural Law- laws are from God
or some other and presupposed human life. Humans have natural rights that go
above and beyond anything else. Rights usually go with basic goods. “intrinsic
leads to cookery. The public work which we
do together to realize the common good. Easily corruptible.
- philosophy of law that emphasizes the
conventional nature of law. Socially constructed norms. A law is a law because
authority enforces it.
since law is made by man its imperfect up to the
discretion of judges and attorneys. Has flaws
the branch of ethics that tries to work out a fair allocations of goods and
people who believe that people who work harder and
get more money they deserve it. Because they worked harder.
people should only have more money if they have
more needs (ie. Special education) you ought to give more money to those
folks because they have more needs.
If you do what most pretty good people
mostly do then you are living in accord with conventional morality.
perfect vs. imperfect duty
Perfect- a duty that is non
flexible ie. Do not steal. It is a perfect duty because if stealing was
universalized it would be illogical or impractical. This goes against universal
Imperfect duty- this is the
duty to act only on maxims that we desire ie. If you thought the world would be
a better place if you gave to charity then you should give to charity. It is
imperfect because you don’t have to follow it every time. For instance if you
didn’t have enough money to buy food you would be okay not giving to charity.
However it would never be right to steal.
justice vs. generosity
justice is a perfect duty, generosity is an
direct translation is “you have a heart for misery”:
mercy- acquanias says that misericordia is more important than justice and or
is a strength of character that helps one to act
well in a given context.
virtue that is very important and has to do with
a big part of life. These are Core Virtues. Things you cant go a day
virtue that has to do with virtues that are
virtues but not core virtues.
It explains how a person can defeat their fears
for doing what is just in life.
helps a person act well by harmonizing desires
a prudent person is one who shows practical
wisdom. Prudence as in intellectual virtue is the quality of mind that enables
us rightly to order the means at hand to the specific ends that we seek. And as
a moral virtue it is a quality of the will that lets us govern our wants so
that they don’t distort our reasoning.
for Aquinas its both an intellectual virtue and a
gift of the holy spirit
unity of virtues
says that you cant really have a virtue without
having all the other virtues too.
virtue of respect for ones parents or
“natural”- something is natural given
the nature of human person, insofar it helps actualize goods of the human
innate. One judges rightly about God only by
somehow sharing God’s life.
steady willing of the good of something. Not
concerned with qualities we the person
a definition that is just a name a name for the
sake of it. Ie the name gold meaning the metal gold. The word is related to
what it is.
picks out something according to what it really
is. A chemist could create a real definition for what gold really is
everything that the law and ethics applies too.
assigning different rights values or
considerations to individuals based solely on their species. if we take
membership in a given species in an exclusive way. If we say only members of
our species are members of the moral community. Or we can think of it as
an inclusive way and say that lets check out all the other species and see if
they can talk to us. Now we have a stewardship to other human beans and other
the value and agency of being a human being,
individually and collectively. If there are Humans in mars. This theory says
those humans are also important.
a branch of philosophy concerned with explaining
the fundamental nature of being and the world that encompasses it. It
looks into the notions of how people understand the world, space, objects,
existence and time.
Principle of equality
Equals should be treated equally and
unequals should be treated unequally, in proportion to their relevant
The answer of where the relevant
differences come from you have to go back to the fundamental moral standard.
Example is that you try and become a
walk on for the lakers. The lakers turn you down every time because you cant
shoot. You are unequal in relevant effects. (basketball ability)
Review of FMS 1. Reason is consistant,
2. It carries a purpose with it. 3. You have to do it yourself.
We are shaped by our biology and culture, and we
know that we could suffer any number of biological disasters, we are also
shaped by our biological restriction, and knowing that we still freely choose
what we want to do. There is room for some human freedom.
Objections to Natural Law
Identification- how are we supposed to know what a
natural good really is? What are the criteria for a basic good? Because it is
pluralistic there is going to be conflict and situations where there is
conflict. You cannot use the principle of negative responsibility because no
basic good is better then the other.
Pros to Natural Law
- it has universal appeal, it plays a
central role in peoples lives, it has no price, you can try to buy and sell it
but you don’t really get it if you buy it. Ie. You cant buy friendship.
It has Come and See appeal. If you don’t understand a basic good you just
have to experience it once to understand.
Principle of solidarity
first measure of justice in any society or institution is how it treats the
Principle of double effect
there are 4 conditions that have to be
The initial act is at least okay in
and of itself
In acting what you intend needs to be
While there is a bad effect. You don’t
intend the bad effect only foresee it. It does not itself cause a bad effect.
There is a proportionate reason for
Principle of subsidiarity
the smallest and most local group that can
contribute to the common good should do so and have the most freedom to do so
know thyself. It is better to suffer evil then
to do evil.
Evil as privation
evil is the absence of good.
Act: transitive & intransitive dimensions
Transitive- act affects the object.
Intransitive-->action affects the actor. Most important.
Omne ens perficitur in actu
grass roots approach. Behind that is a
metaphysical approach. Everything realizes its potential in acting. The less
you are allowed to act the less you can realize the potential
greek work that can be translated to happiness
talked about by Aristotle. Updated meaning (talked about in class
today)-->also translates to excellence.
Principle ofsufficient reason
for ever state of affairs and every event there is a cause
and an explanation for that state of an event.
Intelligibility of nature
Nature is intelligible and not absurd. Nature
has much to teach us.
between those who are close to you and those who are in need.