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Benjamin Sachs [14]Benjamin R. Sachs [1]
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Profile: Benjamin Sachs (New York University)
  1. Benjamin R. Sachs, Consumerism and Information Privacy: How Upton Sinclair Can Again Save Us From Ourselves.
    This Note will address the salience of a simple analogy: will privacy law be for the information age what consumer protection law was for the industrial age? At the height of industrialization, the United States market for consumer products faced instability caused by a lack of consumer competence, lack of disclosure about product defects, and advancements in technology that exacerbated the market's flaws. As this Note will show, these same causes of market failure are stirring in today's economy as well. (...)
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  2. Benjamin Sachs (2014). The Relevance of Distributive Justice to International Climate Change Policy. 17 (2):208-224.
    (2014). The Relevance of Distributive Justice to International Climate Change Policy. Ethics, Policy & Environment: Vol. 17, No. 2, pp. 208-224. doi: 10.1080/21550085.2014.926085.
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  3. Benjamin Sachs (2013). Mazor on Indirect Obligations to Conserve Natural Resources for Future Generations. Ethics, Policy and Environment 16 (2):208 - 211.
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  4. Benjamin Sachs (2013). Reasons Consequentialism. Journal of Moral Philosophy 10 (5):671-682.
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  5. Benjamin Sachs (2013). Why Coercion is Wrong When It's Wrong. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 91 (1):63 - 82.
    It is usually thought that wrongful acts of threat-involving coercion are wrong because they involve a violation of the freedom or autonomy of the targets of those acts. I argue here that this cannot possibly be right, and that in fact the wrongness of wrongful coercion has nothing at all to do with the effect such actions have on their targets. This negative thesis is supported by pointing out that what we say about the ethics of threatening (and thus the (...)
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  6. Benjamin Sachs (2012). The Limits of Fair Equality of Opportunity. Philosophical Studies 160 (2):323-343.
    The principle of fair equality of opportunity is regularly used to justify social policies, both in the philosophical literature and in public discourse. However, too often commentators fail to make explicit just what they take the principle to say. A principle of fair equality of opportunity does not say anything at all until certain variables are filled in. I want to draw attention to two variables, timing and currency. I argue that once we identify the few plausible ways we have (...)
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  7. Benjamin Sachs (2011). Going From Principles to Rules in Research Ethics. Bioethics 25 (1):9-20.
    In research ethics there is a canon regarding what ethical rules ought to be followed by investigators vis-à-vis their treatment of subjects and a canon regarding what fundamental ethical principles apply to the endeavor. What I aim to demonstrate here is that several of the rules find no support in the principles. This leaves anyone who would insist that we not abandon those rules in the difficult position of needing to establish that we are nevertheless justified in believing in the (...)
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  8. Benjamin Sachs (2011). The Status of Moral Status. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 92 (1):87-104.
    This paper investigates whether moral status talk gets us anywhere in our search for answers to questions in the ethics of marginal cases. I consider the usefulness of moral status talk first on the assumption that an individual's possession of moral status is not a further fact about that individual, and then on the assumption that it is. Finally, I offer an expressivistic interpretation of moral status talk. In each case, I argue that such talk conveys nothing that cannot be (...)
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  9. Benjamin Sachs (2010). Consequentialism's Double-Edged Sword. Utilitas 22 (3):258-271.
    Recent work on consequentialism has revealed it to be more flexible than previously thought. Consequentialists have shown how their theory can accommodate certain features with which it has long been considered incompatible, such as agent-centered constraints. This flexibility is usually thought to work in consequentialism’s favor. I want to cast doubt on this assumption. I begin by putting forward the strongest statement of consequentialism’s flexibility: the claim that, whatever set of intuitions the best nonconsequentialist theory accommodates, we can construct a (...)
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  10. Benjamin Sachs (2010). Morality, Adapted. Perspectives in Biology and Medicine 53 (4):624-629.
    Over the last few decades, scientists have been busy debunking the myth that nonhuman animals relate to each other in a primarily competitive, aggressive way. What they have found is that many species of animal, including many of those most closely related to humans, display a remarkable range of cooperative, "prosocial" behavior. In fact, it appears that some animal societies adhere to a moral code. What is preventing us, then, from saying that the members of these societies are moral beings? (...)
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  11. Benjamin Sachs (2010). Response to Open Peer Commentaries on “The Case for Evidence-Based Rulemaking”. American Journal of Bioethics 10 (6):1-3.
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  12. Benjamin Sachs (2010). The Case for Evidence-Based Rulemaking in Human Subjects Research. American Journal of Bioethics 10 (6):3-13.
    Here I inquire into the status of the rules promulgated in the canonical pronouncements on human subjects research, such as the Declaration of Helsinki and the Belmont Report. The question is whether they are ethical rules or rules of policy. An ethical rule is supposed to accurately reflect the ethical fact (the fact that the action the rule prescribes is ethically obligatory), whereas rules of policy are implemented to achieve a goal. We should be skeptical, I argue, that the actions (...)
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  13. Benjamin Sachs (2009). Extortion and the Ethics of “Topping Up”. Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 18 (04):443-445.
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  14. Benjamin Sachs (2008). Reasons and Requirements. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 11 (1):73 - 83.
    In this essay I defend the claim that all reasons can ground final requirements. I begin by establishing a prima facie case for the thesis by noting that on a common-sense understanding of what finality is, it must be the case that all reasons can ground such requirements. I spend the rest of the paper defending the thesis against two recent challenges. The first challenge is found in Joshua Gert’s recent book, Brute Rationality. In it he argues that reasons play (...)
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  15. Benjamin Sachs (2008). The Liberty Principle and Universal Health Care. Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 18 (2):pp. 149-172.
    A universal entitlement to health care can be grounded in the liberty principle. A detailed examination of Rawls's discussion of health care in Justice as Fairness shows that Rawls himself recognized that illness is a threat to the basic liberties, yet failed to recognize the implications of this fact for health resource allocation. The problem is that one cannot know how to allocate health care dollars until one knows which basic liberties one seeks to protect, and yet one cannot know (...)
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