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Unformatted text preview: 9-20-05In principle, it is immoral to hit someone in the face, but a utilitarian might say that it could cause pleasurable results in the future, and therefore might be a good utilitarian thing to do.If you were to just examine the conse-quences of utilitarianism, maybe it would be OK, not good or bad, to slap someone in the face because nothing would result from it.if consequences are that unpre-dictable, then how can we make any difference at all.EXAMPLE: someone has to choose b/t Stanford U. and Bob Jones College. The person will Fnd true love @ Bob Jones, but isnt he/she crazy for going to Bob Jones?MILL: It still follows from utilitarianism that you should not beat up your fellow students b/c the likelihood is that it wont help anybody.MILL: we do not know the conse-quences of hitting someone, but we know that they probably dont want to be hit, so we should go ahead and not hit that person. Theres no way to pre-dict every consequence.HARDIN: we are here and we act with what we know a/b the consequences, I wouldnt go scold the person who re-jected Hitler from art school. That ad-missions ofFcer acted on what he/she knew about the consequences of his/her actions.PPL following utilitarianism can only think of their immediate sphere of inu-ence b/c there is no way to predict the buttery effect of what someone might do.If we have to decide w/ uncertainty, we have to cling to what weve got right now, and we cant retroactively consid-ered bad people.we cantthink poorly of someone who is driving perfectly and accidentally hits someone.We canthink poorly of someone who is driving drunk and doesnt hit anyone.Mill bases his argument on expected outcome on the fact that most ppl are operating on roughly the same set of data.Mills objection to killing one person to save Fve, or such dis-utopian scenarios is that such a society where this was acceptable would be horrible and would lead to major problems in the society. THIS IS CALLED RULE UTILITARIAN-ISM. HARDINtalks about societies that treat minorities badly. While in theory, mak-ing a small group miserable to make a much larger group happy might be utili-tarian, HARDIN argues that in the real world, this consequence doesnt follow. This leads to civil strife. What if torturing one person made the entire world happy? HARDIN says that this would require new laws of physics and could never really happen. (The Get Real objection)This is how HARDIN reaches the topic, the limits of reason. If we have real life examples, then none of these hypothetical things would be able to happen. Therefore the standard objec-tion to utilitarianism (what if...?) doesnt really matter....
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