In this paper I critically evaluate Ronald Dworkin's attempt in Life's Dominion to understand sacred value as a form of intrinsic value which is grounded in investment. I argue that there are two problems with Dworkin's conception of intrinsic value. First, it does not allow him to distinguish, as he must, between incremental and sacred values. Secondly, sacred value qua intrinsic value is not the kind of value which can be grounded in investment. I argue that both of these problems (...) are an implication of a realist conception of intrinsic value. Nevertheless, investment does seem to play a role in our judgements about intrinsic value and in light of this I aim to develop an alternative account of intrinsic value whichcan make sense of this. (shrink)
What is one who takes normativity seriously to do if normativity can neither be discovered lurking out there in the world independently of us nor can it be sufficiently grasped from a merely explanatory perspective? One option is to accept that the normative challenge cannot be met and to retreat to some form of moral skepticism. Another possibility has recently been proposed by Christine Korsgaard in The Sources of Normativity where she aims to develop an account of normativity which is (...) grounded in autonomy. Furthermore, she argues that on her account reasons are "essentially public" and that this captures how it is that we can obligate one another. In this paper I argue that there is a serious tension between her account of normativity and the publicity of reasons-namely, that if reasons are essentially public, then it is not possible for individuals to legislate laws for themselves. However, I then argue that if we revise her conception of normativity such that it is understood to involve collective rather than individual legislation that it may then be possible to account for interpersonal reasons. (shrink)
In popular image, Jesus as friend is sentimentalized, but not so in the Fourth Gospel. Jesus gave his life in love for others and always spoke and acted boldly—marks of friendship in the cultural world of the New Testament.
ABSTRACT Martin B. Peterson argues that the social experiment analysis improperly shifts our focus onto the rhetorical dimension of debates over technology, which is ‘clearly irrelevant’ to the ‘traditional’ question: is this a morally acceptable technology? By invoking Harry Truman and the atom bomb in his counterargument, however, Peterson exemplifies the important role that rhetoric plays in our assessment and acceptance of certain technologies. Peterson’s account of The Bomb is an unfortunate byproduct of American nationalist dogma, but the social experiment (...) analysis is well equipped to neutralize its obfuscating effect. Philosophers should further investigate its utility in light of this analytical strength. (shrink)
The cyclical nature of the church's timekeeping means that the sacred story begins anew at Advent, inviting the church to place the coming of the Christ child in a cosmic context in which even time is redefined by God's anticipated in-breaking into the world. Advent is the season of new beginnings and new hopes in its anticipation of the dawning of God's new age.
The author defends his version of the parallel which can be drawn between Wittgenstein's 'private language' argument and the argument that practical reasons must necessarily be public reasons. This position is compared and contrasted with recent attempts by Christine Korsgaard and Ken O'Day to formulate a 'public reasons' argument. The position is defended against the criticism that it cannt account for the practical force of reasons. Finally it is argued that, although the claim that the reasons must be 'public' (...) is not to be confused with the claim that reasons must be 'other-regarding', the former claim does help to remove certain obstacles to the idea of other-regarding reasons. (shrink)
Responsibility and accountability of CEOs has been a major ethical concern over the past 10 years. Major ethical dilemmas at Enron, Worldcom, AIG, as well as other well-known organizations have been at least partially blamed on CEO malfeasance. Interviews with Ken Lay, CEO of Enron, after his 2006 fraud convictions provides an opportunity to document his perceived role in the demise of Enron. Possibly no other CEO has had as much impact on the scrutiny and legalization of business ethics as (...) Ken Lay. This analysis is timely because of many information sources now available and the recent Supreme Court decisions on Enron conviction appeals. Using Ken Lay as the focal point, a review of literature provides the background for research questions to explore the role of the CEO in developing an ethical corporate culture. (shrink)
Ken López-Escobar questions the timeless status of various entities—propositions, numbers, etc.—as well as my characterization of pure propositional logic as an ontological theory. In my response I argue that my characterization of propositional logic does not depend on timeless propositions, or on other abstract truth bearers, but is a characterization in terms of truth relations between any truth bearers. I also discuss his views on numbers as cultural constructs, as well as his use of quantification in propositional logic.Ken López-Escobar questiona (...) o estatuto atemporal de vários entes—pro-posições, números, etc.— assim como minha caracterização da lógica proposicional pura como teoria ontológica. Na réplica argumento que minha caracterização não depende de proposições atemporais, ou de outros portadores de verdade abstratos, mas é uma caracterização em termos de relações de verdade entre quaisquer portadores de verdade. Examino também suas considerações sobre números como construtos culturais, assim como seu uso de quantificação na lógica proposicional. (shrink)
The recent Supreme Court decision upholding Roe v. Wade and in particular, the dissent by Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, sheds new light on the issue of abortion. Let us consider any stage of a pregnancy when abortion is medically safe for the mother. If at that stage it is also medically viable to save the fetus, is an abortion performed at that stage of pregnancy morally justifiable? For example, if it is, or becomes, medically safe to perform abortions after first (...) trimester of pregnancy and at the same time saving a fetus is, or becomes, medically viable or not unusual during some stage of the second trimester, can abortions during and after that stage of pregnancy be justified? With a number of qualifications I shall argue the thesis that as a general rule, but not an absolute rule, abortion in these instances is not usually justifiable. For if it is, then one will also have to grant the moral justification for a number of other highly questionable medical practices. This thesis is not to be identified with the stronger claim that abortions of viable fetuses can never be performed. There are surely exceptions such as when the life or health of the mother is in danger. But, I shall argue, the justification for making such exceptions is on different grounds than is sometimes claimed because one must weigh the health of the mother against the life of another human being. (shrink)
SummaryUtah has the highest total fertility of any state in the United States and also the highest proportion of population affiliated with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Data were used from the 1996 Utah Health Status Survey to investigate how annual household income, education and affiliation with the LDS Church affect fertility for married women in Utah. Younger age and higher education were negatively correlated with fertility in the sample as a whole and among non-LDS respondents. Income (...) was negatively associated with fertility among non-LDS respondents. However, income was positively correlated with fertility among LDS respondents. This association persisted when instrumental variables were used to address the potential simultaneous equations bias arising from the potential endogeneity of income and fertility. The LDS religion's pronatalist stance probably encourages childbearing among those with higher income. (shrink)