In this paper I critically examine Michael Moore's views about responsibility in overdetermination cases. Moore argues for an asymmetrical view concerning actions and omissions: whereas our actions can make us responsible in overdetermination cases, our omissions cannot. Moore argues for this view on the basis of a causal claim: actions can be causes but omissions cannot. I suggest that we should reject Moore's views about responsibility and overdetermination. I argue, in particular, that our omissions can make us responsible in overdetermination (...) cases. I go on to provide an account of how this may be possible. (shrink)
Carolina Sartorio argues that only the actual causes of our behaviour matter to our freedom. The key, she claims, lies in a correct understanding of the role played by causation in a view of that kind. Causation has some important features that make it a responsibility-grounding relation, and this contributes to the success of the view. Also, when agents act freely, the actual causes are richer than they appear to be at first sight; in particular, they reflect the agents' (...) sensitivity to reasons, where this includes both the existence of actual reasons and the absence of other reasons. So acting freely requires more causes and quite complex causes, as opposed to fewer causes and simpler causes, and is compatible with those causes being deterministic. The book connects two different debates, the one on causation and the one on the problem of free will, in new and illuminating ways. (shrink)
What is the relationship between moral responsibility and causation? Plainly, we are not morally responsible for everything that we cause. For we cause a multitude of things, including things that we couldn't possibly foresee we would cause and with respect to which we cannot be assessed morally. Thus, it is clear that causing something does not entail being morally responsible for it. But, does the converse entailment hold? Does moral responsibility require causation? Intuitively, it does: intuitively, we can only be (...) morally responsible for things that we cause. (shrink)
Starting from the notions of q-entailment and p-entailment, a two-dimensional notion of entailment is developed with respect to certain generalized q-matrices referred to as B-matrices. After showing that every purely monotonic singleconclusion consequence relation is characterized by a class of B-matrices with respect to q-entailment as well as with respect to p-entailment, it is observed that, as a result, every such consequence relation has an inferentially four-valued characterization. Next, the canonical form of B-entailment, a two-dimensional multiple-conclusion notion of entailment based (...) on B-matrices, is introduced, providing a uniform framework for studying several different notions of entailment based on designation, antidesignation, and their complements. Moreover, the two-dimensional concept of a B-consequence relation is defined, and an abstract characterization of such relations by classes of B-matrices is obtained. Finally, a contribution to the study of inferential many-valuedness is made by generalizing Suszko’s Thesis and the corresponding reduction to show that any B-consequence relation is, in general, inferentially four-valued. (shrink)
In this article I examine the relation between causation and moral responsibility. I distinguish four possible views about that relation. One is the standard view: the view that an agent's moral responsibility for an outcome requires, and is grounded in, the agent's causal responsibility for it. I discuss several challenges to the standard view, which motivate the three remaining views. The final view – the view I argue for – is that causation is the vehicle of transmission of moral responsibility. (...) According to this view, although moral responsibility does not require causation, causation still grounds moral responsibility. (shrink)
There is an initial presumption against disjunctive causes. First of all, for some people causation is a relation between events. But, arguably, there are no disjunctive events, since events are particulars and thus they have spatiotemporal locations, while it is unclear what the spatiotemporal location of a disjunctive event could be.1 More importantly, even if one believes that entities like facts can enter in causal relations, and even if there are disjunctive facts, it is still hard to see how disjunctive (...) facts could be causes. Imagine, for instance, the following scenario. I have a gun filled with red paint and another gun filled with blue paint, and I fire both guns at my neighbor’s white wall. A moment later, there is a graffiti on the wall and my neighbor notifies the police. He would have done so regardless of the graffiti’s color, since all he cares about is the existence of a graffiti on his wall. Is it plausible to claim that a disjunctive fact is a cause of his notifying the police? In particular, is it plausible to claim that he notified the police because I fired the red-paint gun or the blue-paint gun (the thought being that my firing paint of either color would have sufficed)? It seems not. The police was notified because of the actual graffiti on the wall, and the actual graffiti on the wall is made of a certain pattern of colored patches. Imagine, that, as it turns out, there are patches of both colors on the wall. Then it seems that both my firing the red-paint gun and my firing the blue-paint gun were causes of my neighbor’s notifying the police. In other words, my firing the red-paint gun and my firing the blue-paint gun jointly caused the outcome: each of them was a contributory cause of the outcome’s occurrence. On the other hand, imagine that there are only patches of one color on the wall. Then it seems that my firing only one of the guns was a cause. Either way, the disjunction fails to be a cause: either my firing the red-paint gun was a cause, or my firing the blue-paint gun was a cause, or they were both causes, but their disjunction was not.. (shrink)
Some classical studies in social psychology suggest that we are more sensitive to situational factors, and less responsive to reasons, than we normally recognize we are. In recent years, moral responsibility theorists have examined the question whether those studies represent a serious threat to our moral responsibility. A common response to the “situationist threat” has been to defend the reasons-responsiveness of ordinary human agents by appeal to a theory of reasons-responsiveness that appeals to patterns of counterfactual scenarios or possible worlds. (...) In this paper I identify a problem with that response and I offer a better solution. (shrink)
Over the years, two models of freedom have emerged as competitors: the alternative-possibilities model and the actual-sequence model. This paper is a partial defense of the actual-sequence model. My defense relies on two strategies. The first strategy consists in de-emphasizing the role of examples in arguing for a model of freedom. Imagine that, as some people think, Frankfurt-style cases fail to undermine the alternative-possibilities model. What follows from this? Not much, I argue. In particular, I note that the counterparts of (...) Frankfurt-style cases also fail to undermine the actual-sequence model. My second strategy of defense consists in revitalizing the original motivation for the actual-sequence model, by revamping it, isolating it from claims that do not fully capture the same idea, and arguing that it can be developed in a successful way. (shrink)
In this paper I reexamine the debate between two contrasting conceptions of free will: the classical model, which understands freedom in terms of alternative possibilities, and a more recent family of views that focus only on actual causes, and that were inspired by Frankfurt’s famous attack on the principle of alternative possibilities. I offer a novel argument in support of the actual-causes model, one that bypasses the popular debate about Frankfurt-style cases.
In 1992, as part of a larger charitable campaign, the Prince of Wales (Prince Charles, Queen Elizabeth’s older son and heir) launched a line of organic food products called “Prince’s Duchy Originals”.1 The first product that went on sale was an oat cookie: “the oaten biscuit.” Since then the oaten biscuit has been joined by hundreds of other products and Duchy Originals has become one of the leading organic food brands in the UK. Presumably, the Prince of Wales is very (...) proud of his Duchy Originals products, and of the oaten biscuits in particular. Let’s imagine that he is so proud of the oaten biscuits that he eats them regularly. Also, let’s imagine that one day Queen Elizabeth asks the Prince to water the plant in her room. As she explains to him, she’ll be gone for the day and the plant needs to be watered every afternoon. But the Prince decides not to water the plant. Instead of watering the plant, he spends his afternoon savoring some oaten biscuits, and the Queen’s plant dies. (shrink)
On the face of it, causal responsibility seems to be “additive” in the following sense: if I cause some effects, then it seems that I also cause the sum (aggregate, conjunction, etc.) of those effects. Let’s call the claim that causation behaves in this way, Additivity.
I respond to the critical comments by Randolph Clarke, Alfred Mele, and Derk Pereboom on my book Causation and Free Will. I discuss some features of the view that our freedom is exclusively based on actual causes, including the role played in it by absences of reasons, absence causation, modal facts, and finally some additional thoughts on how a compatibilist can respond to the manipulation argument for incompatibilism.
Over the years, two models of freedom have emerged as competitors: the alternative-possibilities model, which states that acting freely consists in being able to do otherwise, and, more recently, the actual-sequence model, which states that acting freely is exclusively a function of the actual sequence of events issuing in our behavior. In general, a natural strategy when trying to decide between two models of a certain concept is to look for examples that support one model and undermine the other. Frankfurt-style (...) cases have been used for this kind of purpose, to challenge the alternative-possibilities view and support the actual-sequence view. In this paper I examine the prospects of the counterparts of Frankfurt-style cases: “PAP-style” cases, or cases that could be used to support the alternative-possibilities view and challenge the actual-sequence view. I argue that there are no successful PAP-style cases. (shrink)
Recent scholarship on John Locke’s Two Treatises of Government has drawn particular attention to the colonial antecedents and applications of the theory of appropriation in chapter V of theSecond Treatise. This attention has coincided with a more general interest among political theorists in the historical and theoretical relationship between liberalism and colonialism. This essay reviews the surviving evidence for Locke’s knowledge of the Carolina colony and argues that it was both more extensive and more enduring than previous commentators have (...) suggested. In particular, the essay provides evidence that Locke was engaged in revising the Fundamental Constitutions of Carolina at just the moment in the summer of 1682 when he was most likely to have composed chapter V of theSecond Treatise and hence that there was an immediate and identifiable colonial context that contributed to his distinctive theory of property. (shrink)
Recent scholarship on John Locke's "Two Treatises of Government" has drawn particular attention to the colonial antecedents and applications of the theory of appropriation in chapter V of the Second Treatise. This attention has coincided with a more general interest among political theorists in the historical and theoretical relationship between liberalism and colonialism. This essay reviews the surviving evidence for Locke's knowledge of the Carolina colony and argues that it was both more extensive and more enduring than previous commentators (...) have suggested. In particular, the essay provides evidence that Locke was engaged in revising the Fundamental Constitutions of Carolina at just the moment in the summer of 1682 when he was most likely to have composed chapter V of the Second Treatise and hence that there was an immediate and identifiable colonial context that contributed to his distinctive theory of property. (shrink)
This is a critical discussion of Vihvelin’s recent book Causes, Laws, and Free Will. I discuss Vihvelin’s ideas on Frankfurt-style cases and the actual-sequence view of freedom that is inspired by them.
I argue that, according to ordinary morality, there is moral inertia, that is, moral pressure to fail to intervene in certain circumstances. Moral inertia is manifested in scenarios with a particular causal structure: deflection scenarios, where a threatening or benefiting process is diverted from a group of people to another. I explain why the deflection structure is essential for moral inertia to be manifested. I argue that there are two different manifestations of moral inertia: strict prohibitions on interventions, and constraints (...) on interventions. Finally, I discuss the connection between moral inertia and the distinction between killing and letting die (or doing and allowing harm). (shrink)
A billionaire tells you: “That chair is in my way; I don’t feel like moving it myself, but if you push it out of my way I’ll give you a hundred dollars.” You decide you don’t want the billionaire’s money and you’d actually prefer that the chair stay in the billionaire’s way, so you graciously turn down the offer and go home. As it turns out, the billionaire is also a stingy old miser; he was never willing to let go (...) of a hundred dollars. Knowing full well that the chair couldn’t be moved due to the existence of several tons of weight tying it to the ground, he simply wanted to have a laugh at your expense. (shrink)
This study examines to what extent perceived corporate social responsibility reduces employee cynicism, and whether trust plays a mediating role in the relationship between CSR and employee cynicism. Three distinct contributions beyond the existing literature are offered. First, the relationship between perceived CSR and employee cynicism is explored in greater detail than has previously been the case. Second, trust in the company leaders is positioned as a mediator of the relationship between CSR and employee cynicism. Third, we disaggregate the measure (...) of CSR and explore the links between this and with employee cynicism. Our findings illustrate that the four distinct dimensions of CSR of Carroll are indirectly linked to employee cynicism via organizational trust. In general terms, our findings will help company leaders to understand employees’ counterproductive reactions to an organization, the importance of CSR for internal stakeholders, and the need to engage in trust recovery. (shrink)
Benefit sharing aims to achieve an equitable exchange between the granting of access to a genetic resource and the provision of compensation. The Convention on Biological Diversity, adopted at the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, is the only international legal instrument setting out obligations for sharing the benefits derived from the use of biodiversity. The CBD excludes human genetic resources from its scope, however, this article considers whether it should be expanded to include those resources, so as to (...) enable research subjects to claim a share of the benefits to be negotiated on a case-by-case basis. Our conclusion on this question is: 'No, the CBD should not be expanded to include human genetic resources.' There are essential differences between human and non-human genetic resources, and, in the context of research on humans, an essentially fair exchange model is already available between the health care industry and research subjects. Those who contribute to research should receive benefits in the form of accessible new health care products and services, suitable for local health needs and linked to economic prosperity. When this exchange model does not apply, as is often the case in developing countries, individually negotiated benefit sharing agreements between researchers and research subjects should not be used as 'window dressing'. Instead, national governments should focus their finances on the best economic investment they could make; the investment in population health and health research as outlined by the World Health Organization's Commission on Macroeconomics and Health; whilst international barriers to such spending need to be removed. (shrink)
The cross-cultural literature is reviewed and integrated together with attitude theories, thereby outlining a model through which certain values influence the intervening variables that ultimately lead managers to tolerate employee bribery. The case of Latin America is employed to illustrate how regionally dominant cultural values may shape managers' attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control, which in turn affect tolerance of employee bribery. A series of research propositions and practical recommendations are derived from the model.
Desde la crítica feminista a John Rawls y la teoría del reconocimiento de Axel Honneth, se propone ampliar la noción liberal de justicia social para que las relaciones de amor y cuidado recuperen su papel vital. Se examina en qué medida y sentido la vida familiar constituye una esfera de justicia para mostrar cómo, además de la regulación externa, es necesaria una mirada valorativa de sus relaciones internas, sin olvidar que en la familia intervienen virtudes que exceden a la justicia.
South Carolina State College was founded in 1896. As one of the Black institutions taking advantage of the Second Morrill Act of 1890, a large portion of the college's limited financial resources, its energies, and its programs were devoted to training students in agriculture, home economics, vocational trades, and in the education of teachers. These curriculums were considered appropriate for young Black men and women in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.When the civil rights movement began to challenge (...) segregation in education in South Carolina in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the state's white leaders responded quickly and effectively by creating graduate and law programs at State College. To preserve the racial status quo and segregation in education, Governor James F. Byrnes subsequently raised funds, including one-half million dollars from the Rockefeller sponsored General Education Board, to improve long neglected facilities at State College. A sizable portion of the funds were devoted to the agricultural program.While the defense of “separate but equal” education by Byrnes and others ultimately failed, the changes fostered at State College did dramatically improve the institution in the 1950s and 1960s and brought a shift in its mission away from its traditional focus on rural and agricultural education for Black youngsters. By 1966, the college was nominally integrated. Paradoxically, in 1971 with enrollments declining and fewer students interested in pursuing agriculture as away of life, the agriculture program was discontinued. (shrink)
RESUMEN Desde la crítica feminista a John Rawls y la teoría del reconocimiento de Axel Honneth, se propone ampliar la noción liberal de justicia social para que las relaciones de amor y cuidado recuperen su papel vital. Se examina en qué medida y sentido la vida familiar constituye una esfera de justicia para mostrar cómo, además de la regulación externa, es necesaria una mirada valorativa de sus relaciones internas, sin olvidar que en la familia intervienen virtudes que exceden a la (...) justicia. ABSTRACT On the basis of the feminist critique of John Rawls and of Axel Honneth's theory of recognition, the paper suggests a broader liberal notion of social justice that reinstates the vital role of the relationships of love and care. It examines to what extent and in what sense family life constitutes a sphere of justice, in order to show that, in addition to external regulation, an evaluative approach of its internal relations is necessary, without neglecting the fact that virtues that go beyond justice are at stake in the family. (shrink)
SummaryThe French Idea of History: Joseph de Maistre and His Heirs, 1794–1854 is a monograph by Carolina Armenteros describing the historical thought of Joseph de Maistre and recounting its posterity among French traditionalist, socialist and positivist thinkers. This article presents Armenteros's reflections on some of her book's themes and on the place they occupy in current scholarly debates. She notes that commentators today tend to assume politics' primacy over spirituality as a human motivator. A product of the de-spiritualisation of (...) human experience in late modernity, this view is associated with the polarisation of the concepts of tradition and Enlightenment, and with ideas of liberty and reason ill-adapted to interpreting Maistre's thought. Armenteros shows how her portrait of an anti-absolutist, empiricist and reasonable Maistre disappointed with kings and bent on resolving the problem of violence through spiritual means is the necessary consequence of investigating his historical and political thought in context. (shrink)
In this article I review the core elements of Carolina Sartorio’s actual causal sequence account of free will and moral responsibility, and propose two revisions. First, I suggest replacing the contested notion of absence causation by the relatively uncontroversial notion of causal explanation by absences. Second, I propose retaining explanation by unreduced dispositions, of which Sartorio appears to be wary. I then set out a response to her critical treatment of manipulation arguments against compatibilism. Lastly, I point out that (...) Sartorio’s reasons-sensitivity condition on moral responsibility is amenable to a conception of moral responsibility that, unlike the one she endorses, dispenses with basic desert. (shrink)