on writing prescriptions. These two reasons indicate why there are obvious repercussions for those who do not have reasonable access to physicians’ services. Of course, the word ‘reasonable’ is important here. After all, there is the old joke—for those who enjoy gallows humor—that the U.S. has universal access to healthcare so long as one is willing to commit a crime to see the county jail’s physician, or make one’s self sick enough to qualify for emergency services. Putting aside such extraordinary (...) measures, at least some deficit in accessing physicians’ services can be made up through consulting written medical knowledge. Many libraries have medical textbooks, and the Internet has many good sites that contain medical knowledge. Of course, all the knowledge in the world is not going to do much good if treatment requires a prescription. The physicians’ monopoly on writing prescriptions means that nothing (legal) can be done in terms of treatment if one does not have access to the services of a qualified physician. This state of affairs is unjust. A just society cannot have it both ways: legislation cannot say both that the expertise of physicians is so precious that only they can prescribe medicine AND not everyone is guaranteed reasonable access to their services. If there is no guarantee of reasonable access then physicians should not have a monopoly on writing prescriptions, and if there is a monopoly on writing prescriptions then people should have reasonable access to their services. (shrink)
The primary question to be addressed here is whether pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD), used for both negative and positive trait selection, benefits potential supernumerary embryos. The phrase ‘potential supernumerary embryos’ is used to indicate that PGD is typically performed on a set of embryos, only some of which will be implanted. Prior to any testing, each embryo in the set is potentially supernumerary in the sense that it may not be selected for implantation. Those embryos that are not selected, and (...) hence destroyed or frozen, are ‘actually supernumerary’. The argument to be advanced is hypothetical: If embryos may be said to benefit or be harmed by our actions, then PGD used to select for an embryo or embryos with the highest expected Wellbeing benefits potential supernumerary embryos. The argument shows that the ‘non-identity’ problem is not sufficient to show that eugenic selection does not benefit supernumerary embryos. (shrink)
Kupperman, Joel J., Theories of Human Nature Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-5 DOI 10.1007/s11712-012-9264-3 Authors Matthew D. Walker, Philosophy Department, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ 08901, USA Journal Dao Online ISSN 1569-7274 Print ISSN 1540-3009.
It is widely accepted that only the victim of a wrong can forgive that wrong. Several philosophers have recently defended “third-party forgiveness,” the scenario in which A, who is not the victim of a wrong in any sense, forgives B for a wrong B did to C. Focusing on Glen Pettigrove's argument for third-party forgiveness, I will defend the victim's unique standing to forgive, by appealing to the fact that in forgiving, victims must absorb severe and inescapable costs of distinctive (...) kinds, a plight that third parties do not share. There are, nonetheless, significant, even essential, roles played by third parties in making forgiveness possible, reasonable, or valuable for victims of serious wrongs. I take a closer look at the links between victims, wrongdoers, resentment, and forgiveness in showing why the victim alone can forgive. (shrink)
Surgery is an important part of contemporary health care, but currently much of surgery lacks a strong evidence base. Uptake of evidence-based medicine (EBM) methods within surgical research and among practitioners has been slow compared with other areas of medicine. Although this is often viewed as arising from practical and cultural barriers, it also reflects a lack of epistemic fit between EBM research methods and surgical practice. In this paper we discuss some epistemic challenges in surgery relating to this lack (...) of fit, and investigate how resources from feminist epistemology can help to characterize them. We point to ways in which these epistemic challenges may be addressed by gathering and disseminating evidence about what works in surgery using methods that are contextual, pluralistic, and sensitive to hierarchies. (shrink)
On the one hand, Hume accepts the view ? which he attributes primarily to Stoicism ? that there exists a determinate best and happiest life for human beings, a way of life led by a figure whom Hume calls ?the true philosopher?. On the other hand, Hume accepts that view ? which he attributes to Scepticism ? that there exists a vast plurality of good and happy lives, each potentially equally choiceworthy. In this paper, I reconcile Hume's apparently conflicting commitments: (...) I argue that Hume's ?Sceptical? pluralism about the character of the happiest life need not conflict with his ?Stoic? advocacy of the supreme happiness of the true philosopher, given Hume's flexible understanding of how one might live as a true philosopher. (shrink)
The attention paid to the influence of organizational philanthropy on consumer responses has precipitated a shift in the role this practice plays in organizational dynamics—with philanthropy becoming an increasingly strategic marketing tool. The authors develop and test a model predicting that: (1) perceived organizational credibility will mediate the relationship between awareness of philanthropy and the outcomes of advocacy and financial sacrifice; (2) consumer social consciousness will moderate the relationship between awareness of philanthropy and firm credibility, and between credibility and the (...) outcome variables; and (3) these moderated relationships will be mediated by perceived credibility. Data obtained from a sample of professional golf patrons support our assertions. Notably, the findings implicate perceived credibility as a key intervening variable in the hypothesized relationships for the PGA Tour. (shrink)
This study is grounded in the debate surrounding the perceived value of environmental social responsibility (ESR). Applying the Managerial Theory of the Firm, in-depth interviews were conducted to identify managerial motives, perceptions, and perceived value of ESR. Using sport and public assembly facilities as the research context, environmentally responsible information was obtained from facility managers who were members of the International Association of Venue Managers. In total, 15 one-hour, interviews with key facility personnel demonstrate that (1) internal stakeholder pressure, (2) (...) organizational culture, (3) financial cost-benefit, (4) competitiveness, and (5) ethical motives were the drivers for ESR engagement. Taken together, the findings suggest that establishing a culture of ESR, the "business case" for environmental responsibility, and ethical concerns offered the most value for the sport and public assembly facility managers. (shrink)
Introduction : a great reversal? -- Justifying morality -- Groundwork 3 : an enigmatic text -- The second critique -- Groundwork 2 : rational nature as an end-in-itself? -- From rational agency to freedom -- From freedom to non-phenomenal -- From non-phenomenality to universality -- The identity of persons -- Recovering the categorical imperative.
‘Contract cheating’ has recently emerged as a form of academic dishonesty. It involves students contracting out their coursework to writers in order to submit the purchased assignments as their own work, usually via the internet. This form of cheating involves epistemic and ethical problems that are continuous with older forms of cheating, but which it also casts in a new form. It is a concern to educators because it is very difficult to detect, because it is arguably more fraudulent than (...) some other forms of plagiarism, and because it appears to be connected to a range of systemic problems within modern higher education. This paper provides an overview of the information and literature thus far available on the topic, including its definition, the problems it involves, its causal factors, and the ways in which educators might respond. We argue that while contract cheating is a concern, some of the suggested responses are themselves problematic, and that best practice responses to the issue should avoid moral panic and remain focussed on supporting honest students and good academic practice. (shrink)
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has emerged as an effective way for firms to create favorable attitudes among consumers. Although prior research has addressed the direct influence of proactive and reactive CSR on consumer responses, this research hypothesized that consumers’ perceived organizational motives (i.e., attributions) will mediate this relationship. It was also hypothesized that the source of information and location of CSR initiative will affect the motives consumers assign to a firms’ engagement in the initiative. Two experiments were conducted to test (...) these hypotheses. The results of Study 1 indicate that the nature of a CSR initiative influences consumer attribution effects and that these attributions act as mediators in helping to explain consumers’ responses to CSR. Study 2 suggests that the source of the CSR message moderates the effect of CSR on consumer attributions. The mediating influence of the attributions as well as the importance of information source suggests that proper communication of CSR can be a viable way to inculcate positive corporate associations and purchase intentions. (shrink)
Abstract: International instruments now defend a "right to the truth" for victims of political repression and violence and include truth telling about human rights violations as a kind of reparation as well as a form of redress. While truth telling about violations is obviously a condition of redress or repair for violations, it may not be clear how truth telling itself is a kind of reparations. By showing that concerted truth telling can satisfy four features of suitable reparations vehicles, I (...) defend the idea that politically implemented modes of truth telling to, for, and by those who are victims of gross violation and injustice may with good reason be counted as a kind of reparations. Understanding the doubly symbolic character of reparations, however, makes clearer why truth telling is unlikely to be sufficient reparation for serious wrongs and is likely to be sensitive to the larger context of reparative activity and its social, political, and historical background. (shrink)
Neil Levy argues that while addicts who believe they are not addicts are self-deceived, addicts who believe they are addicts are just as self-deceived. Such persons accept a false belief that their addictive behaviour involves a loss of control. This paper examines two implications of Levy's discussion: that accurate self-knowledge may be particularly difficult for addicts; and that an addict's self-deceived belief that they cannot control themselves may aid their attempts at self-control. I argue that the self-deceived beliefs of addicts (...) in denial and of self-described addicts differ in kind. Unlike the self-deception of an addict in denial, that of the self-described addict allows them to acknowledge their behaviour. As such, it may aid an addict to develop more self-control. A paradoxical implication is that this self-deception may allow an addict more self-knowledge. (shrink)
Current literature suggests that corporate social responsibility (CSR) can affect consumers' attitudes towards an organization and is regarded as a driver for reputation-building and fostering sustained consumer patronage. Although prior research has addressed the direct influence of CSR on consumer responses, this research examined the mediating influence of consumer's perceived organizational motives within an NGO setting.Given the heightened public attention surrounding the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, data were collected from consumers of the Games to assess their perceptions of the International (...) Olympic Committee's (IOC) socially responsible initiatives. We hypothesized that consumers of the Games were likely to cognitively elaborate on CSR messages by way of three specific attribution effects derived from the literature. The results show that, contingent on CSR awareness, consumers responded positively to social efforts judged to be values-driven and stakeholder-driven; and a negative response was seen for efforts judged to be strategic. These attribution effects influenced various types of patronage and perceived organizational reputation. (shrink)
The article argues for an alliance of the capability approach developed by Amartya Sen with ideas from critical pedagogy for undergraduate university education which develops student agency and well being on the one hand, and social change towards greater justice on the other. The purposes of a university education in this article are taken to include both intrinsic and instrumental purposes and to therefore include personal development, economic opportunities and becoming educated citizens. Core ideas from the capability approach are outlined, (...) with examples, before possible articulations of capability and Sen's notion of process freedom with critical pedagogy are investigated. It is argued that each approach has something to offer when brought alongside as ‘critical capability pedagogies’, which seek to enhance and expand student experiences of learning and their ‘valuable beings and doings’. Finally core capabilities in a university education are considered and some of the problems of domesticating the capability approach addressed. (shrink)
Beauvoir's distinction between romantic and authentic love offers us an opportunity for thinking through the complex refotions among phihsophy, reading, and love. If we accept her account of romantic love as a flawed, dependent mode of being, and her suggestion that an authentic love—one that engages maturely with the other—is possible, then we might take the risk of thinking of reading in these terms.
If God is morally perfect then He must perform the morally best actions, but creating humans is not the morally best action. If this line of reasoning can be maintained then the mere fact that humans exist contradicts the claim that God exists. This is the ‘anthropic argument’. The anthropic argument, is related to, but distinct from, the traditional argument from evil. The anthropic argument forces us to consider the ‘creation question’: why did God not create other gods rather than (...) humans? That is, if God is omniscient, omnipotent, and morally perfect then why didn’t He create a world populated exclusively by beings that are perfect in the same way that He is—ontological equivalents— rather than choosing to create humans with finite natures and all the suffering that this entails? (shrink)
This is a revised edition of Walker's well-known book in feminist ethics first published in 1997. Walker's book proposes a view of morality and an approach to ethical theory which uses the critical insights of feminism and race theory to rethink the epistemological and moral position of the ethical theorist, and how moral theory is inescapably shaped by culture and history. The main gist of her book is that morality is embodied in "practices of responsibility" that express our identities, values, (...) and connections to others in socially patterned ways. Thus ethical theory needs to be empirically informed and politically critical to avoid reiterating forms of socially entrenched bias. Responsible ethical theory should reveal and question the moral significance of social differences. The book engages with, and challenges, the work of contemporary analytic philosophers in ethics. Moral Understandings has been influential in reaching a global audience in ethics and feminist philosophy, as well as in tangential fields like nursing ethics; research ethics; disability ethics; environmental ethics, and social and political theory. This revised edition contains a new preface, a substantive postscript to Chapter 1 about "the subject of moral philosophy"; the addition of a new chapter on the importance of emotion in practices of responsibility; and the addition of an afterword, which responds to critics of the book. (shrink)
There is evidence from the empirical sciences that >happiness= B understood in the social scientists= sense of >positive affect=B leads to prosocial behaviour: the happiest amongst us are more likely to help others. There is also scientific evidence of a genetic component to positive affect: genetic differences can account for some of the observed variances in positive affect. Let us think of >happy-people-pills= as pharmacological agents, modeled on those with a genetic predisposition for high levels of positive affect, which will (...) promote positive moods and emotions in >normally= happy persons. It is argued that if we want to increase prosocial behaviour then we should (other things being equal) promote the use of happy-people-pills. Since we should increase prosocial behaviour, we should (other things being equal) promote the use of happy-people-pills. In a short paper like this, I cannot possibly show that everything else is equal. However, I hope to establish at least a prima facie case for policy that permits the creation and distribution of happy-people-pills. (shrink)
Peter Singer has argued that there are good utilitarian reasons for rejecting the prospect of superlongevity: developing technology to double (or more) the average human lifespan. I argue against Singer's view on two fronts. First, empirical research on happiness indicates that the later years of life are (on average) the happiest, and there is no reason to suppose that this trend would not continue if superlongevity were realized. Second, it is argued that there are good reasons to suppose that there (...) will be a certain amount of self-selection: the happiest are more likely to adopt superlongevity technology. This means that the adoption of superlongevity technology will have the effect of raising the level of aggregate utility. (shrink)
Evidence for instances of astrophysical 'fine tuning' (or 'coincidences') is thought by some to lend support to the design argument (i.e. the argument that our universe has been designed by some deity). We assess some of the relevant empirical and conceptual issues. We argue that astrophysical fine tuning calls for some explanation, but this explanation need not appeal to the design argument. A clear and strict separation of the issue of anthropic fine tuning on one hand and any form of (...) Eddingtonian numerology and teleology on the other, may help clarify arguably the most significant issue in the philosophy of cosmology. (shrink)
This book sets out to generate new ways of reflecting ethically about the purposes and values of contemporary higher education in relation to agency, learning, public values and democratic life, and the pedagogies which support these.
Research in the neurosciences continues to provide evidence that sleep plays a role in the processes of learning and memory. There is less of a consensus, however, regarding the precise stages of memory development during which sleep is considered a requirement, simply favorable, or not important. This article begins with an overview of recent studies regarding sleep and learning, predominantly in the procedural memory domain, and is measured against our current understanding of the mechanisms that govern memory formation. Based on (...) these considerations, I offer a new neurocognitive framework of procedural learning, consisting first of acquisition, followed by two specific stages of consolidation, one involving a process of stabilization, the other involving enhancement, whereby delayed learning occurs. Psychophysiological evidence indicates that initial acquisition does not rely fundamentally on sleep. This also appears to be true for the stabilization phase of consolidation, with durable representations, resistant to interference, clearly developing in a successful manner during time awake (or just time, per se). In contrast, the consolidation stage, resulting in additional/enhanced learning in the absence of further rehearsal, does appear to rely on the process of sleep, with evidence for specific sleep-stage dependencies across the procedural domain. Evaluations at a molecular, cellular, and systems level currently offer several sleep specific candidates that could play a role in sleep-dependent learning. These include the upregulation of select plasticity-associated genes, increased protein synthesis, changes in neurotransmitter concentration, and specific electrical events in neuronal networks that modulate synaptic potentiation. Key Words: consolidation; enhancement; learning; memory; plasticity; sleep; stabilization. (shrink)
Following on from the target article, which presented a new model of procedural skill memory development, in this response I will reflect on issues raised by invited commentators and further expound attributes of the model. Discussion will focus on: evidence against sleep-dependent memory processing, definitions of memory stages and memory systems, and relationships between memory enhancement, sleep-stages, dreaming, circadian time, and sleep-disorders.