Phil 4 exam

eshapeesha's version from 2017-09-12 19:49


Question Answer
experience machine objection to hedonismif people are hedonistic, prioritizing their happiness and base level urges searching only for happiness than why wouldnt you want to live in an ideal land experience machine? this refutes that happiness is our intrinsic driver, since most would not chose happiness in this circumstance.
trolley problemshould you intentionally kill one person to save 5 or do nothing and kill the 5 but save the one? according to indirect utilitarianism, you should kill the 5 people because one of the base level rules is to not kill. according to act utilitarianism, you should maximize happiness and therefore kill the one person intentionally because less people end up dying. But this doesnt account the means, which is a flaw.
doctrine of double effectmilitary v terror bombing. indirect utilitarianism would acknowledge that they have different base level rules for them to follow. act utilitarianism would pick the one that maximizes happiness, so if each situation has the same effect, they are equal.
considerations of moral rightshospital case of killing the healthy person to save a ton of people. act utilitarians would say that maximizing happiness means more people being alive, which means killing the healthy person.indirect utilitarians wouldnt kill the one person because based on base level rules, angry mob case- should you scapegoat the drifter to prevent an angry mob from destroying the town? according to act utilitarianism,

cultural relativism

Question Answer
what is cultural relativismdiscusses the nature of morality. nothing is objectively right or wrong, its just tradition and opinion that culturally varies. there is no truth in morality.
cultural differencesdifferent cultures have different moral codes, but there is no objective truth. people disagree on what constitutes morality
criticism of cultural relativismsome beliefs are scientifically disproven though. and the belief that there is no wrong discourages criticism, fails to condemn wrong doings of societies. also moral progress is not accounted for.
rachels rejections of cultural relativismcant judge customs of other societies as morally inferior (ex- racism, genital mutilation), if true we could base right or wrong based on the beliefs of our own society, there would be no true moral progress if true itd all just be considered different.
example of cultural differenceeskimos would sometimes undergo infanticide of females because more males would die. this was for the survival of them all. the greeks would burn their dead while the callatians would burn them.


Question Answer
glaucons challengeobjective moral nihilism, there are no objective moral truths that hold across the board. he thinks morality is a social contract, an agreement that to avoid suffering the badness of injustice, we are willing to give up the selfish gains that come with injustice. therefore we act justly out of personal interest.
what is glaucons justicejustice is somewhere between the best way things could go and the worst way things could go. (best= injustice w none returned back to you; worst= injustice and get away w it)
what does he mean when he says injustice is naturally good and suffering injustice is naturally badinjustice is personally beneficial if you can get away with taking all that you need, sufferring injustice means that something was taken from you which is against your self interest and is bad for what you want.
what compells us to act morallyself interest, the fact that acting justly allows us to have more than if everyone acted unjustly. because although you could take whatever you wanted, people would also take back from you.
glaucons worries about his social contract account of justicethe problem of the strong man and the problem of opportunity. we only act justly because of these social contracts. so its all rooted in what is best for peoples personal interests. this is problematic when its possible for someone to get away with acting unjustly, and that the social contract will not apply to everyone. people are in a position of power and can get away with acting unjustly, so the social contract would only apply to those who are "weak"
how does the ring of gyges show glaucons worriesthe ring of gyges can turn its wearer invisible at their will. so gyges kills the kind and seduces the queen and makes himself king. the social contract doesnt apply to him bc of power, but is gyges morally obligated to be moral?
Is morality different then we would have normally thought if glaucon's account is correctglaucon questions if there is any further sense of justice, right and wrong beyond that sense of right and wrong that is merely instrumental to our desires to avoid punishment within the system of the social contract. morality is guided by self interest.

mill's utilitarianism

Question Answer
what is mills theory of utilitarianismtakes GHP to be the root of all morality. GHP says that an action is right so long as it tends to promote happiness which is identified in pleasure, and is wrong if it promotes the opposite of happiness which can be pain. so this theory seeks to maximize happiness as much as possible for all people
how does mill circumvent the swine objectionby defining happiness and therefore pleasure as connected to morality, mill is agreeing with hedonism. therefore, it could be said that we should follow our base pleasures at all times that bring instant pleasure and happiness. mill thinks that this stoops to a low view of human capabilites and capacity for happiness. humans are capable of experiencing different pleasures from that of a pig as we have elevated faculties compared to a pig (sounds weird). we should judge pleasures on scale in terms of quantity and quality.
And how does Mill think we ought to use the GHP in our daily lives?we should take actions that allow for the most happiness for the most people in our daily lives. this happiness should also be a high quality of happiness, which means more than low quality, base urges.

act v indirect utilitarianism

Question Answer
indirect utilitarianismfirst consult first order every day values, then consult the greatest happiness principal. its indirect and depends on the situation.
act utilitarianisman action is right if and only if it maximizes happiness. this is applied directly to all situations- either right or wrong, maximizing happinessfor the most people or not. extreme!
problem w actwhat about situations that neither promote or dissuage happiness? what about little thigns that dont matter
consistency objectionsif your drunken roommate who wont remember anything in the morning orders a ton of pizza do you wake them up to a surprise pizza or do you give the pizza to a hungry family? you shouldnt lie and you shouldnt steal but....? if you are stranded on an island and the last dying wish of someone is for you to dig an island garden which you agreed to, should you do that or should you spend time getting food and such? Consistency objections leave indirect utilitarians vulnerable to this objection because the first level rules can be called into question. Act utilitarianism can stand up to this because it would propose that you follow whichever option will maximize happiness.

criticisms util

Question Answer
best criticism or counter example to utilitarianism. is this a criticism or counter examplethe counter example to utilitarianism is the experience machine. if people seek the outcome that assures the maximum happiness for the maximum number of people, then the consequences of the experience machine would be ideal.
what particularly is the criticism overutilitarianism overlooks the importance of personal integrity and one's own life plan. it involves taking the perspective of the universe rather than ourselves personally, when personal goals are a significant factor in peoples lives. any good moral theory must encompass the personal, perspectival manner in which we as agents confront the world in attempt to act morally.
does the criticism affect all forms of utilitarianismit affects act utilitarianism more, because that doesnt include personal values or integrity at all. but it also does relate to indirect because of the greatest happiness principle, and how this is the determining factor when first level principles are confused.
how would the utilitarian respondreasons like following integrity do not matter as much as the effects of your integrity. these are only moral and justifiable if they cause the most happiness for the most people. what good is integrity if it doesnt cause more universal happiness?


Question Answer
practical requirementan obligation to fulfill the means needed to achieve an end goal. you can escape the practical requirement if you change what you want, therefore not be in an obligatory/ "have to" type situation.
What kinds of practical requirements are there for Kant and what are the features of each?there are conditional requirements through hypothetical imperatives. there are also practical requirements through categorical imperatives. the ultimate categorical imperative is acting for reasons.
What are the different kinds of hypothetical requirement?hypothetical requirements have conditional aspects (if x, then y)
How can each requirement be escaped?categorical requirements cannot be escaped, but hypothetical requirements can be. hypothetical can be if you reject the authority that requires you to do the requirement or by changing the ends.
Are some requirements inescapable? Explain. (Be sure to give examples of each kind of practical requirement).categorical requirements, yes. morality, for example. even if you reject morality you cant go kill everyone. society wouldnt let you. these are good for their own sake and are not worth pursuing for another reason. they are intrinsically authoritative and valuable. according to kant the only thing like this ,being good intrinsically without condition, is a good will. a will is a rational faculty that we all have by which we can come to a judgement about which actions we should take on the basis of judging them good. your ability to choose what to do and what is good to do.
4 kinds of actionsacting from duty, acting in accordance with duty with other motivations, acting in accordance with duty but from some sort of inclination, acting conrary to duty