Neuroeconomics illustrates our deepening descent into the details of individual cognition. This descent is guided by the implicit assumption that “individual human” is the important “agent” of neoclassical economics. I argue here that this assumption is neither obviously correct, nor of primary importance to human economies. In particular I suggest that the main genius of the human species lies with its ability to distribute cognition across individuals, and to incrementally accumulate physical and social cognitive artifacts that largely obviate the innate (...) biological limitations of individuals. If this is largely why our economies grow, then we should be much more interested in distributed cognition in human groups, and correspondingly less interested in individual cognition. We should also be much more interested in the cultural accumulation of cognitive artefacts: computational devices and media, social structures and economic institutions. (shrink)
What Aphorism Does Nietzsche Explicate in Genealogy of Morals, Essay III ? JOHN T. WILCOX A picture held us captive. Wittgenstein ~ AS EVERYONE KNOWS, the dominant opinion is not always correct. Current scholarship, in all likelihood, makes assumptions which have not yet been questioned; and probably some of them will be seen to be false, once they have been examined. I will argue here that there is a dominant but erroneous assumption concerning the Third Essay in Nietzsche's On (...) the Genealogy of Morals. It will be obvious that correcting this error has some serious implica- tions for almost all current interpretations of the essay. After acknowledging, at the end of his Preface to the Genealogy, that some might find his new book "incomprehensible," Nietzsche warns that "the fault.., is not necessarily mine." He assumes, he says, that readers have already worked hard at his earlier writings, themselves "not easy to pene- trate," and have been "wounded" and "delighted" by his Zarathustra. Then he begins one of several passages we must examine carefully: In other cases, people have difficulty with the aphoristic form: this arises from the fact that today this form is not taken seriously enough. An aphorism, properly stamped and molded, has not been "deciphered" when it has simply been read; rather, one has then to begin its exegesis, for which is required an art of exegesis. I have offered in the third essay of the present book an example of what I.. (shrink)
This article examines the potential for moral agency in human resource management practice. It draws on an ethnographic study of human resource managers in a global organization to provide a theorized account of situated moral agency. This account suggests that within contemporary organizations, institutional structures—particularly the structures of Anglo-American market capitalism— threaten and constrain the capacity of HR managers to exercise moral agency and hence engage in ethical behaviour. The contextualized explanation of HR management action directly addresses the question of (...) whether HRM is inherently unethical. The discussion draws on MacIntyre’s conceptualization of moral agency within contemporary social structures. In practice, HR managers embody roles that may not be wholly compartmentalized. Alternative institutional structures can provide HR managers with a vocabulary of motives for people-centred HRM and widen the scope for the exercising of moral agency, when enacted within reflective relational spaces that provide milieus for critical questioning of logics and values. This article aims to contribute to and extend debate on whether HRM can ever be ethical, and provide a means of reconnecting business ethics with longstanding concerns in critical management studies. (shrink)
Global migration raises important ethical issues. One of the most significant is the question of whether liberal democratic societies have strong moral obligations to admit immigrants. Historically, most philosophers have argued that liberal states are morally free to restrict immigration at their discretion, with few exceptions. Recently, however, liberal egalitarians have begun to challenge this conventional view in two lines of argument. The first contends that immigration restrictions are inconsistent with basic liberal egalitarian values, including freedom and moral equality. The (...) second maintains that affluent, liberal democratic societies are morally obligated to admit immigrants as a partial response to global injustices, such as poverty and human rights violations. This article surveys the main philosophical arguments for these positions on immigration and discusses the critical responses to these arguments. (shrink)
This paper raises two objections to the freedom of movement argument from the perspective of nonideal philosophy: the argument cannot provide a means for establishing admissions priorities when all prospective immigrants cannot be admitted and it ignores alternative grounds for moral claims to admission in the context of histories of injustice. I develop an alternative admissions-guiding principle that assigns strong moral claims to admission to certain prospective immigrants based on a global extension of the no-harm principle. It claims that a (...) society must admit prospective immigrants if admission is necessary either to prevent that society from harming those immigrants or to compensate immigrants whom it has already harmed. States must fulfill these duties before they may legitimately use immigrant admissions policy in service of other national goals, including the advancement of economic interests. (shrink)
Wellman argues that legitimate states have a presumptive right to close their borders, excluding all prospective immigrants. He maintains that this right is not outweighed by egalitarian considerations because societies can fulfill their duties to outsiders by transferring aid instead of opening borders. I argue that societies cannot discharge their egalitarian duties by providing aid in at least two cases: when opening borders is the only way to fulfill these duties, and when transferring aid is inconsistent with egalitarian commitments. I (...) also consider additional, non-egalitarian moral considerations that may justify a duty to maintain open borders. I conclude that Wellman fails to prove that states have an actual, all things considered right to close their borders. (shrink)
This chapter critiques neonativist ideologies and immigration legislation through the intersecting lenses of gender, ethnicity and race, class, and immigration status. I argue that neonativist immigration legislation is persistently, though covertly, biased again women immigrants, and arguments in defense of such exclusionary legislation rest on insupportable normative assumptions concerning the proper aims of immigration policy and the rights of resident noncitizens.
In response to the concern that ethnically diverse immigrants are not being sufficiently integrated into receiving liberal democratic societies, liberal nationalists have offered two specific naturalization policy proposals. The first would require naturalizing immigrants to assimilate the national culture of the receiving society; the second would encourage newcomers to adopt the prevailing civic national identity. This paper rejects these proposals. In contrast to liberal nationalists, I deny that good citizenship presupposes a common culture or civic national identity and I develop (...) a non-nationalist naturalization model that would encourage immigrants to become integrated into liberal democratic societies by participating in their major socio-economic and political institutions and practices. (shrink)
In this paper we criticize the commonly accepted theory of memory, and offer an alternative. According to the traditional view, memory is a stored mental representation of things past. We show, through an analysis of a single act of recognition, the logical oddities to which this view leads. Since, however, these are generally ignored, we also consider those characteristics of the traditional view which apparently make it attractive to those who hold it, namely its consonance with the commonly held conception (...) of time, its explanation for the fallibility of memory, and its way of making behavior predictable. We then present the alternative view, the direct realist theory. According to it, there is no such thing as a stored mental representation. The theory redefines memory as the perception of sequential structure, and in so doing successfully treats of the fallibility of memory and the necessity for making behavior predictable. Moreover, and perhaps most importantly, it does not lead to the logical difficulties of the traditional theory. (shrink)
Erdelyi argues persuasively for his unified theory of repression. Beyond this, what can studying repression bring to our understanding of other aspects of emotional function? Here we consider ways in which work on repression might inform the study of, on one hand, emotional memory, and on the other, the emotional numbing seen in patients with chronic persistent depersonalization symptoms.
I ask four questions: (1) Why should we think that our hominid ancestor's predation is not just a causal influence but the main causal factor responsible for human cruelty? (2) Why not think of human cruelty as a necessary part of a syndrome in which other phenomena are necessarily involved? (3) What definitions of cruelty does Nell propose that we operate with? And (4) what about the meaning of cruelty for human beings?
Heraclitus DK107 reads as follows: κακοὶ μάρτυρεσ ἀνθρώποισιν ὀφθαλμοι και ὦτα βαρβάρουσ ψυχὰσ ἐχόντων. It is readily translated: “Eyes and ears are bad witnesses for those with barbarian psychai.”However, this fragment is not readily interpreted. The problem is that we do not know what the phrase “barbarian psychai” means; and as long as this phrase remains uninterpreted, the import of DK107 is unclear. I shall argue that no previous interpretation of the phrase “barbarian psychai” is satisfactory; and I shall offer (...) a more adequate interpretation of that key phrase. First, however, a few preliminary comments. (shrink)
Changing land-use patterns and amenity-driven migration have brought agriculture back into people’s lives, but there is a disconnection between the realities of production agriculture and romantic images attached to farming. To the extent that “rurality” is attached to farming, people may desire to live in rural places, but they may be unprepared for the realities of living near a working farm. Greater numbers of communities are facing “either/or” outcomes regarding the conversion of “open space” land to residential or commercial uses (...) versus landscape preservation. This study explored the perceptions and preferences of a community regarding the conversion of a hypothetical parcel of open space to a working dairy or to a residential subdivision. Results suggest that the opportunity costs of foregoing open space for residential development are high, with implications for valuing the conservation of traditions that are tied to the land versus conversion of land solely for development purposes. (shrink)
Asbestos-related illnesses contribute to the deaths of more than 100,000 people worldwide (ILO 2006) and the plight of sufferers of these illnesses has become a global ethical issue. A leading, Australian building products corporation, James Hardie, created a complex corporate structure that included the establishment of a “Victims Compensation Fund”, and moved its corporate headquarters to the Netherlands to reduce its liabilities. Hardie claimed that this move was tax minimization (Haigh 2006). In this study case, a number of ethical issues (...) provides the opportunity to discuss many business-society questions. These include the duties of the company towards a wide range of stakeholders affected in some way by Hardie’s earlier production of asbestos-related products and its subsequent responses to the question of compensation. (shrink)
In Morocco’s process of liberalization (and democratization), the dynamics between social actors defining themselves as “secular” and those labeled “Islamist” are critical. This paper probes the possibility of these actors transcending their frequent opposition and building mutual trust and “civil” interaction, thereby strengthening civil society and the possibility of continued reform in Morocco. Using Morocco’s recent Equity and Reconciliation Commission as an analytical tool, the paper focuses on the human rights arena as a potentially fruitful place for Islamists and secularists (...) to meet. To what extent is a shared commitment to human rights norms possible for non-violent Islamists and secularists? And can a flexible idea of human rights be an effective tool to create trust despite mutual perceptions of threatening ideal aims in the “other”? (shrink)