Pike, Gregory K On May the 10th this year, the Director of Southern Cross Bioethics Institute, Dr Greg Pike, was invited to participate in a public debate organised by the St James Ethics Centre in Sydney, as part of their IQ2 series of debates. The subject of this debate was "All drugs should be legalised", and Dr Pike spoke against the motion. The debate was aired on ABC radio national and televised on ABC2. The transcript of his address follows - (...) the main talk was followed by a brief additional section titled "Drugs and Human Rights". (shrink)
Pike, Gregory K Eugenics is not usually a topic for polite conversation. The first thought that typically springs to mind is Hitler's euthanasia programme, the master race and the attempted extermination of the Jews. However, an examination of the social history of eugenics reveals that in practice it operated in many other contexts, and its conceptual meaning is much broader. And while that social history has usually been confined to the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the core ideas in (...) eugenics have been part of dreams about the human condition for millennia. It is therefore not surprising to find various modern practices, some driven by new technology, subsumed under the rubric of eugenics. Eugenics as an idea is certainly resilient, even if at times it has been elusive. Indeed, perhaps it is resilient because it is elusive. In summary, eugenics is powerful yet poorly understood. Because it appeals to utopian dreams of a better future, where humans can be freed from their 'biological slavery', as Margaret Sanger put it, it remains pervasive even if cryptic. The new eugenics is sanitised, framed as autonomous choice, and unlike the ill-informed version of the 20s and 30s or the nasty Nazi variety. But it is nonetheless potent and its various manifestations are expressions of powerful ideas that remain firmly embedded in the collective human consciousness. (shrink)
Pike, Gregory K Drug abuse has come into the public spotlight again as the Australia21 group recently released several documents arguing for an end to the prohibition of drugs like cannabis, heroin, cocaine, ecstasy and amphetamine. The arguments are not new, and those who advance them probably think it is only a matter of time before they achieve their goal.
Pike, Gregory K Organisations agitating for legal euthanasia often use the term 'dignity'. They have discovered that it is more effective to avoid the words euthanasia or suicide and instead try to get 'dignity' somewhere in their name. Thus we have Dying with Dignity Victoria, Death with Dignity Oregon, and the Dying with Dignity Bill in Tasmania.
Pike, Gregory K The various levels at which misunderstanding exist with regards to stem cell research are discussed. The mismatch that exists between public perception and reality with regards to the same is highlighted.
Pike, Gregory K In the year 2000, Canberra-based writer Melinda Tankard Reist placed notices and advertisements in various places about a project she was conducting on 'Abortion Grief'. Over 200 women responded, bravely prepared to tell their stories. The resulting book, Giving Sorrow Words: Women's stories of grief after abortion1 makes harrowing reading. Grief and pain followed these women down through the years and sometimes decades. Their accounts, as well as the numerous qualitative studies into women's experiences after Abortion, and (...) the anecdotal observations coming from post-abortion care services5 are evidence that abortion leaves a significant mark on some women. (shrink)
Pike, Gregory K The Dutch government is debating extending its euthanasia scheme to 70 year old who wish to receive a lethal injection at the hands of specially trained 'suicide assistants' who wish to end their lives as there is nothing left for them to do. The government has been forced to consider the concept following a signature campaign by over 100,000 individuals for the same.
This book provides a comprehensive collection of influential essays that present a balanced survey of the major ideas that have come out of this area of study in the last two decades. Each article has been carefully chosen to enable any student of political philosophy to grasp the main debates within the topic. Clearly divided into two parts, Part One deals with fundamental philosophical issues: the nature of social explanation; distributive justice and liberalism and communitarianism. Part Two contains seminal papers (...) in more specific areas: citizenship and multiculturalism; nationalism; democracy and criminal justice. Readings from the following thinkers are included: Lukes, Nozick, Rawls, Parekh, Walzer, Elster, Frankfurt, Gutmann, Barry, Duff, Cohen, Parfit, Taylor, Scruton, von Hirsch, Wright, Sandel, Young, MacIntyre. The readings represent a range of views and demonstrate the richness of the philosophical contribution to political thought. Each section has an introduction by the editors that situates the papers in the ongoing debate and Further Reading sections feature at the end of each chapter. (shrink)
Organizational cybernetics offers theoretical and methodological support for self-organizing communities seeking to contribute to the conscious evolution of society. Previous experiences with the Viable Systems Model (VSM) and Team Syntegrity (TS) illustrate ways of enabling social networks to create a shared language, reach democratic agreements, and develop knowledge networks.
In this highly original and accessible book, one of our leading philosophers of religion seeks to answer this question by analyzing the several states of mystic union as they are described and explained in the classical primary literature ...
A sample of 703 Spanish psychologists completed an online survey containing 114 behaviors related to professional practice in different areas. The aim of the study was to learn which professional behaviors create ethical dilemmas most often for psychologists and how they respond to these issues. Findings suggest that psychologists who have actually faced a particular dilemma are less strict on judging the inappropriateness of a possible ethical transgression than those psychologists who have not experienced it. Also, four clusters can be (...) identified according to the attitude of respondents toward the dilemmas, namely ?rejection,? ?aprioristic,? ?utilitarian,? and ?no conflict.? (shrink)
This paper presents the algebraic and Kripke modelsoundness and completeness ofa logic over Boolean monoids. An additional axiom added to thelogic will cause the resulting monoid models to be representable as monoidsof relations. A star operator, interpreted as reflexive, transitiveclosure, is conservatively added to the logic. The star operator isa relative modal operator, i.e., one that is defined in terms ofanother modal operator. A further example, relative possibility,of this type of operator is given. A separate axiom,antilogism, added to the logic (...) causes the Kripke models to support acollection of abstract topological uniformities which become concretewhen the Kripke models are dual to monoids of relations. The machineryfor the star operator is shownto be a recasting of Scott-Montague neighborhood models. An interpretationof the Kripke frames and properties thereof is presented in terms ofcertain CMOS transister networks and some circuit transformation equivalences.The worlds of the Kripke frame are wires and the Kripke relation is a specializedCMOS pass transistor network. (shrink)
This paper aims to analyze the role of personal identity in altruism. To this end, it starts by reviewing critically the growing literature on economics and identity. Considering the ambiguities that the concept of social identity poses, our proposal focuses on the concept of personal identity. A formal model to study how personal identity enters in individuals' utility function when facing a dictator game decision is then presented. Finally, this ?identity-based? utility function is studied experimentally. The experiment allows us to (...) study the main parameters of the model, suggesting that we should move with caution when attributing identities to individuals. (shrink)
En el presente artículo sostenemos que el abordaje benjaminiano del problema de la melancolía en El origen del drama barroco alemán (1928) pone en juego la posibilidad de acceder a la estructura profunda del mundo material, mediante el establecimiento de una singular relación entre el sujeto melancólico y la naturaleza caída. Pues, si como el propio Benjamin afirma, todo sentimiento es la resultante de un objeto o de cierta conformación material que opera como su causa, la melancolía, por su parte, (...) es aquel sentimiento surgido del lamento profundo de la naturaleza revelado por medio del lenguaje, capaz de contemplar la tristeza que la constituye y el dolor que le genera la imposibilidad de redención. In this paper we argue that Walter Benjamin's approach to the problem of melancholy in The origin of German tragic drama (1928) brings an access to the deep structure of the material world through the establishment of a unique relationship between the melancholic human being and fallen nature. Therefore, if, as Benjamin says, every feeling is the result of an object or some material conformation that operates as its cause, melancholy, for its part, is that feeling emerged from the deep regret of nature revealed by the means of a language able to contemplate the sadness which constitutes it and the pain that generates the impossibility of redemption. (shrink)
Norman Geras argues for the incorporation of elements from the just war tradition into the ethics of social change. But this does not go far enough. In this paper I argue for a prefigurative constraint: that action intended to bring about social transformation ought to prefigure that transformation, and bear those properties of the future state of affairs that make the future state of affairs morally valuable. I defend the idea of a prefigurative constraint against some objections and introduce a (...) schema to relate political action to morally valuable end states. (shrink)
¿Pueden dos objetos ocupar completamente el mismo espacio durante toda su existencia? La teoría estándar nos dice que sí, siempre y cuando pertenezcan a sortales diferentes; esto ocurre cuando un objeto constituye a otro. Sin embargo, para evitar los objetos espacio-temporalmente coincidentes se han propuesto muchas hipótesis, que no han alcanzado consenso. Un modo inexplorado de responder negativamente a la pregunta es aceptar que si un objeto constituye a otro sólo existe el constituido. Eso implica aceptar la existencia intermitente, cuya (...) plausibilidad se defiende aquí a la vez que se estudia su fundamento. Esta noción ha de fundarse en la sub-sistencia del objeto constituyente cuando existe sólo el constituido, y en la super-sistencia del objeto constituido cuando éste ya no existe pero sigue existiendo el constituyente bajo ciertas condiciones. (shrink)
Este trabajo esboza una forma de justificar el principio estructurador central de una teoría veritista de la evaluación epistémica, en respuesta a críticas planteadas por Eleonora Cresto a mi defensa del veritismo frente a una serie de objeciones en el sentido de que no es capaz de explicar la naturaleza y el valor del entendimiento. La primera sección presenta el esbozo de justificación del núcleo de una teoría veritista; la segunda responde a críticas más específicas de Cresto. This paper sketches (...) a way to justify the central tenet of a veritistic theory of epistemic evaluation, in response to problems raised by Eleonora Cresto concerning my defense of veritism, against a series of objetions to the effect that veritistic epistemology is uncapable of explaining the nature and value of understanding. The first section presents the sketch of justification of the nucleus of a veritistic theory, the second responds to some of Cresto's more specific criticisms. (shrink)