Social Contract

Who is part of a social contract? I believe that all people are part of social contract within their community. If there are social contracts that wel are all binded to and we give up certain rights for the “greater good” then we must all be intertwined. We make these contracts in order to all benefit, so we naturally all have a say in what is done, and specifically when a contract is breached. That way there is a way to check the executive or in this case the “sovereign” power. This is in the mold of a democracy and I believe in the perfect world this is how a social contract should function.

November 25, 2008 at 5:12 pm Leave a comment

Morality and Government

There has always been much made of the division of church and state. Another important differentiation talked about less is the division of morality and government. As individuals making up a civilized community we hold a social contract. This contract is said to guarantee the betterment of the general or collective community, at the sacrifice of certain rights we must give up to do so. This system has always been held up and seldom spoken against. As government creates and executes laws, they mold individuals they hold power over. Whatever ideologies the current administration holds is enforced and the people subconsciously conform, or at least come to face the fact things wont change anytime soon. This is the reason why government is not held to a moral standard, as they receive great slack in generating an acceptable moral code for everybody to follow. Although it is impossible to please all, there should always be some argument on the behalf of “moralists” to institute just balance.

November 20, 2008 at 4:13 pm 1 comment

Hobbes’ Doomed Theory

Thomas Hobbes brings to light a rather extreme view of a very plausible, albeit horrendous form of thinking through his idea(s). Hobbes believes that because of the continuous rise for self interest and humans’ snowballing quest for prosperity, along with the limited state of natural resource- there will be cause for a backlash of epic proportions. There will be repercussions for the rapid industrialization that many of us have reeped grand rewards, all at reducing our race to third-world savagery. As all of these catastrophic events slowly take place, there will be a farewell to any form of morality (or whatever we may have left at this point) and the state of the world will be meager as a result of the war to end all wars. Except, in this war we will be no victor only survivors that have gained the “right” to suffer longer, as there would be no form of survival in the long or even short term future. There will be no form of economy as it’s gems, math and history will all be obliterated, left for the sure end of our race. Although Hobbes eludes to these events in a rather melodramatic nature, his ideas to stand the test of time as events like these have taken place on a much smaller scale. I do believe in Hobbes thinking, as if we soon do not begin to heavly monitor our generous natural resources, nobody will and it will be our downfall. The worst part is nobody will be there to pick up the pieces.

November 17, 2008 at 12:57 am 1 comment

Choosing between Mill or Kant

Initially in my studies through class, I believed Mill’s ethical theory of utilitarianism was the best explanation of the intricacies of morality. However, it had one major flaw and that was the skewed magnitude of the action as opposed to the will that was put behind that action. I truly believed that one can decide what is ethical by drawing back on past experiences and corresponding emotions, then making a decision full of “pure” reasons. However the importance of this was greatly minimized as all the focus was put on the final consequences of the action through measuring affected “happiness”. Kantian philosophy however, institutes a great importance on the will of our actions and creates a maxim to be judged on universal relevance. In other words it seems that murder is unethical, as people have had horrendous experiences through death, and the ideology is widely adopted. Although there can be a continuous “wrong for wrong” in this case, I believe Kant has it better understood.

November 13, 2008 at 12:59 am 1 comment

Rationality within the Categorical Imperative

The categorical imperative is an ethical theory that consists of only acting the way that one can will the act into general or universal law. The “maxim” can only be applied and constituted as moral if it is held up and impossible to contradict. This is different from Mill’s utilitarianism approach, as consequences are independent on the morality. This is simply a way to explain the flow of rationality in making a judgement on any individual action. We take our prior experiences to draw on, and help make our best decision from there.

November 9, 2008 at 11:19 pm Leave a comment

The Categorical Imperative

The Categorical Imperative is Kant’s ultimate judging on what is moral and immoral. He states, in simplified terms that an act is moral if it is to be universally accepted and followed. Initially it may seem that this is a “conformist policy”, but the theory can be followed without a great amount of consciousness. The idea that cheating is immoral is a great example. It simply cannot be argued that this it is moral to cheat on any test, or even in life. Cheating on a test is immoral as it defies the very purpose of the exam, to test knowledge and deem who or what is actually correct. Kant’s view is different to John Stuart Mill’s theory of utilitarianism in that utilitarianism deems what is moral based on an action’s consequences. Instead, the categorical imperative measures the morality of an act on the act alone, and detaches the effect, and perhaps social responsibility of consequences. This part of the theory can perhaps solve the lingering flaw of utilitarianism (the perhaps never ending moral trickle down effect), but also brings its own questions into affect.

November 3, 2008 at 12:46 am 3 comments

Intrinsic Happiness

Happiness is the measuring stick in which the theory of utilitarianism is is held to. I believe happiness must be intrinsic, or that it is independent of all or any external parties. This is because happiness can only come from within, and every individuals’ happiness is different, as people have different tolerances and enjoyment levels for different things or activities. If happiness was not intrinsic, then it would seem as though it would be rather common and mediocre as individual A’s bliss would be based on individual B’s bliss, thus not classifying itself as “happiness” at all.

October 29, 2008 at 7:55 pm 1 comment

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