Everyone should be subject to Moral Judgement, even the government. Even though we transfer some of our rights to the government so they can, enforce the laws of the land but that doesn’t mean we give them full authority to do as they please with those rights. We as people need to make sure that our government is not taking advantages of the rights that we have given them. Because in reality we gave them the rights to enforce the law so we should make sure that they are enforcing laws ethically and morally. I believe they should be subject to less moral judgement, rather no judgement. If we did not morally judge the government the government can become too powerful, and ask us to do things that are immoral. or go out and do immoral things, without being able to be stopped. so we need a balance were the governing party is just right for the party it’s governing.

State Of Nature

December 6, 2008

Hobbes states that the “State of Nature” is probably the worst state a Human Being can be in. The state of nature is actually a state of  a society that has no government and no laws, so every man can do whatever, whenever they please. Hobbes is generally correct that this state would actually lead to a state of war, because without any governing body, people would be in a primitive state, where they would fight, kill, steal from anyone and everyone to survive. Ultimately leading to war amongst every other person. People would be taking over other peoples houses to shelter themselves from the weather not caring about what happens to the original owners/builders of the house. They will steal Food from anyone just because they have it. So in general this would be one of the worst state a human can be in, because he would be constantly at war with other people trying to protect what he has, whether it be food, shelter, or clothes.

Group 2 presented and claimed that happiness is unattainable. The Group stated that Morality could increase overall happiness, but that happiness is not everlasting. According to the group, happiness is measured on scale. The Low end of the scale represents Pain/Unpleasure and the Top of the Scale Represent Happiness/Pleasure. The group also said that that everyone tries to strive upwards towards pleasurable side of the scale, but the climb is usually never constant, because a person usually fluctuates between Pain/Unpleasure to Happiness/Pleasure side of the spectrum. The group also stated that happiness/pleasure comes in bursts or spurts and usually last only a couple hours, days, or weeks but then the person starts declining towards the pain/unpleasure side until another moral moment brings them happiness. And the trend continues through out the life time.

Divine Command Theory..

December 5, 2008

Is everything we do morally right because God has told us it’s right? Or is everything Morally wrong because God has told us they are wrong? and If we stripped God of his power over Morality would we be taking away something important? I think that God has the power over morality for a reason. The reason being he is the all knowing and all powerful, he has given us the Intellect to be moral. If we stripped away Gods power over morality, we would be basically stripping ourselves of Morality. Morality is a very important part of our lives, it defines our character. And if God or Us had no sense of morality how would we know what is right and wrong? We would think killing people would be okay to do because we would have no morals to make us feel otherwise.

Social Contract Theory

December 2, 2008

Hobbes Social Contract theory, shows us that the existence of a government is definitly required because, that is the only way to get away from the “State of Nature”. Living in the State of Nature is usually the worst thing for a man, because he is constant fear, and battle. This is because people inclination is to survive and protect their valuables or hoard of supplies. But the only way to stray away from the “State of Nature” is to come to an agreement with all your members to evenly distribute work to produce food, build shelter, and convince people to learn to trust each other, and lower the fear between the people. Once people develop a sense of trust they set rules and regulations that they must follow, for that environment. Once the rules are laid out people learn to accept these values, and start implementing it in their lifestyle. Once this happens the contractors work together to industrialize, import and export food products etc. Soon they go from being barbaric with no sense of Moral to a Society with rules and regulations which morality arises through. They Learned that instead of fighting each other to get scarce food, they should work together and create mass produce. As long as everyone is willing Burden themselves a little bit, for a better, longer, and safer life.

Mill Vs. Kant

December 2, 2008

Mill theory of utilitarianism, is based solely on the consequences of an action effecting overall happiness. Every consequence of an action according to Mill should improve overall happiness in the world. Which is pretty hard to calculate, rather to understand. If an action according to Mill improves overall happiness then the act is Moral. But that doesn’t really mean that all actions that improve overall happiness are Moral. If a person steals from an extremely rich person, and gave the money to the poor, it would increase overall happiness but does that action prove to be moral? Mill defends his theory by manipulating his readers to believe that his theory has it all worked out, but in fact i believe that Kants’ theory is more detailed then Mill’s on utility.

Kants’ Theory is based on the intention of a persons action rather then the result of the action. Which i believe makes more sense. A person should be judged by their actions, rather then the consequences of the action as Mills believes. Kants theory could be used more on a daily basis, like in the judicial system. If you had Good Will when doing the action, that is what you are supposed to be judged on. An example of this would be, a person who gave a donation to a charity, and as soon as he gave the donation that charity got robbed and the money was used to kill innocent children. The person making the donation had no intention of getting his money stolen to be used to kill children, he had the will to help the children and that robbery was out of his control. The donator should not be held responsible for the killing of the children, because his intentions were right. But Mill would defend utility by saying that the donator should be held responsible because of his donation, and the killing of the children, there was an overall decrease in happiness which made his act immoral and punishable.

Even thought Kants Theory is more sensible to me, i think that there should be a mixture of both these theories to make another one, where not only the actions are considered but also the consequences.

I think that we are morally responsible for most of our actions, but there are exceptions to the rule. The reason i believe this is because you can have a positive intention and outcome can be negative, and vice versa. I believe we are responsible for our actions that directly impact our surroundings within a certain time frame, like a statue of limitations. For example, if you were walking and kicked a small rock into a heavily traffic area, and that rock caused an accident as soon it came to stop from you kicking it, then you would be held responsible for the accident. But suppose that you kicked that rock in to the same heavy traffic area and the next day or a couple days later that rock cause a multi car accident. I don’t think the person should be held liable because it was not a direct consequence of your action. After you kicked the rock and left there could be many other factors that could have caused the multi-car accident a couple of days later, such as weather, driving pattern, or sheer bad luck. I think we should be held for responsible for our actions if there is a direct reaction, to the action you have committed. But once the reaction is delayed after the initial action we shouldn’t be held responsible.

The essay that I chose to read was Active and Passive Euthanasia by James Rachels. This essay brought up a moral issue that there is no moral difference between active and passive euthanasia. But according the American Medical Association active euthanasia is condemned for doctors to practice. But on the other hand it is permissible for a doctor to “perform a passive euthanasia.”

According to the author, active euthanasia is the act of killing someone to put them out of their pain or misery by the consent of the patient and or it’s family members.  An example of this would be a person suffering from an incurable cancer that is going to die within a couple of days for a fact, even if the patients treatment is ongoing the result is still going to be the same. Even though the patient is going to die and is in extreme pain it is illegal for a doctor to expedite the end result, which is death. Even if the doctor has the consent of the patient and or family members to expedite the death. Not only is it illegal, it is condemned in the American Medical Association (AMA) doctrine for the doctor to administer death.

On the other hand in the same doctrine, it is permissible for a doctor to withhold treatment for patient and let them die.  That is known as passive euthanasia. Passive euthanasia is actually letting a patient die by not administering any treatment to prolong their life, or not doing a surgery required to prolong the life of the patient. The doctor taking part in passive euthanasia is contradicting his profession making his action immoral according to Kant.

The author brings up a very controversial argument that both active and passive euthanasia is not only ethically wrong but morally wrong too.  The author gives the example of two people, in the same scenario but with a minor difference. The two adults have an orphan cousin they are looking after. These orphan cousins have an estate that they inherited, and if somehow they die the estate will go to the adults their caretakers. Both adults want to inherit the estate of their orphan cousin. Both adults have the same motive, which is financial gain. Adult A has decided to kill his orphan cousin while he is taking a bath. Adult A goes in to the bathroom and holds the cousins’ head underwater and killing him. Making it seem like an accident. Adult B decides to do basically the same thing but rather then drowning him with his own hands, he opens the bathroom door, startles his cousin which makes him slip, injuring his head, falling into the tub to drown. But adult B does not save him nor did he kill him. He just watched and let his cousin die.  Did either man behave better then the other? The author claims that just because adult B did not directly kill the orphan cousin does not make him more moral or ethical then the other person that directly drowned the child. Which is a really good argument.

The author does a very good job persuading his audience, that killing someone is basically the same thing as letting them die, both actions are equally both immoral and ethically wrong. He shows you this by telling you, that Adult B and the Doctor that let his patient die; they both did not do anything that directly killed them, but in fact they did do something, they both chose to let the person die. Which makes both of their actions, subjected to moral appraisal. 

According to Kant’s Categorical Imperative Theory everyone should act in a way that their actions could be used as a universal Law. Kant shows us that categorical “oughts” are possible because we have reason, which makes categorical Oughts rational. For example, cheating on a test, if a person cheated on the test to get a better grade, and his maxim was made into universal law. Then everyone would cheat on the Test to get a better grade. But that law would actually defeat the purpose of giving the test because everyone who took the test would have similar grades, making the law contradictory to itself. But in fact to get a better grade on a test a person should study to get a better grade.

The definition of intrinsic is actually defined as the inherent worth of something, independent of its value to anyone or anything else. And Happiness is a state of pleasure and/or the showing of contentment. I do not think that happiness has any intrinsic value because that would mean that you can experience happiness with out any outside influence or only within itself. And in almost all cases happiness always happens because of an external source that makes a person or group happy. Happiness has probably the opposite of intrinsic value known as extrinsic value, which would make a person happy through an outside source. An example of this would be, if you got a gift you would be happy, making the gift an outside source, which then the gift would make you happy. It would be practically Impossible for Happiness to have Intrinsic value because without any outside influence, what kind of emotions would a person possibly have?