Consequentialism

Consequentialism - Consequentialism Egoism Utilitarianism...

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x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x xx x x xx x x x x x x x x x x Consequentialism Egoism Utilitarianism Relevant consequences are those that have a positive or negative effect on happiness: benefits (pleasures) and harms (pains). Pleasures and pains beyond the lower pleasures (ice cream and back rubs), are included in benefits and harms. i.e.: Pride=pleasure, confusion=harm. Anything that is an “upper” is a pleasure, and any “downer” is a pain. Principle of Utility (greatest happiness principle)- an action is good to the extent that it produces beneficial/pleasurable consequences, bad to the extent that it produces harmful/painful consequences for all those who are affected by the action. That is, to the extent that is contributes to or detracts from the general happiness. Other theories Application of Principle of Utility 1. Consider all of your feasible options 2. For each alternative, estimate the harms/benefits that are likely to accrue to all affected by that option. 3. Choose the option that maximizes benefits and minimizes harms to all affected.
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Utilitarian Calculus - If we just had enough of the right sort of info- who , exactly, would be benefitted/harmed by a given action, and how much exactly ___we could make morality a science. We could literally calculate right and wrong. Utiles - units of benefit/harm, pleasure/pain Positive utiles- “hedons” …think hedonism Negative utiles- “sadons” …think sadistic Ex.: “-“=sadon, “+”=hedon A B +3 +2 +1 +2 0 -1 -2 0 Action “A” creates 4 hedons and 2 sadons, and action “B” creates 4 hedons and 1 sadon. “A” has a net
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This note was uploaded on 04/07/2008 for the course PHIL 1318 taught by Professor None during the Fall '08 term at SMU.

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Consequentialism - Consequentialism Egoism Utilitarianism...

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