This paper examines the relationship between North American beef consumption and deforestation in South and Central America. Some writers have argued that consumption of hamburgers in North America, particularly hamburgers consumed in fast food restaurants, contributes to the depletion of the rainforest in South and Central America. We survey the published policy literature on the causes of rainforest depletion in the region. We also review the published estimates of the rate and extent of clearing of rainforest that has occurred in (...) South and Central America since 1970. Finally, we review the data on beef imports and consumption in Canada and the United States in a effort to assess the importance of South and Central America as suppliers of beef to the North American market. We conclude that the relationship between beef consumption in North America should not be considered an important cause of forest depletion in South and Central America. Domestic policies and market forces in the countries where rainforests are located are the leading causes of rainforest depletion in this region. This lesson seems to have been lost on some popular and even some textbook writers on this subject. (shrink)
Everything we can refer to – physical, biological, psychological, or a human-created entity, institution, activity, or expression of some kind, and whether constituted of brute physical stuff or less tangible complexes of social arrangements, ideas, images, movements, and so on – can be considered in terms of its form of organization or structure. This applies even if what we want to say about these things is that they represent a disorganized or unstructured example of their kind or else that they (...) simply lack any discernible form of internal organization or structure in the sense that their internal structure is undifferentiated or homogenous as opposed to being ‘all over the place’. We therefore live in a world in which everything can be characterized, either positively or negatively, in terms of its form of organization or structure. (shrink)
Traditional definitions of lying require that a speaker believe that what she asserts is false. Sam Fox Krauss seeks to jettison the traditional belief requirement in favour of a necessary condition given in a credence-accuracy framework, on which the liar expects to impose the risk of increased inaccuracy on the hearer. He argues that this necessary condition importantly captures nearby cases as lies which the traditional view neglects. I argue, however, that Krauss's own account suffers from an identical (...) drawback of being unable to explain nearby cases; and even worse, that account fails to distinguish cases of telling lies from cases of telling the truth. (shrink)
Almost all philosophers agree that a necessary condition on lying is that one says what one believes to be false. But, philosophers haven’t considered the possibility that the true requirement on lying concerns, rather, one’s degree-of-belief. Liars impose a risk on their audience. The greater the liar’s confidence that what she asserts is false, the greater the risk she’ll think she’s imposing on the dupe, and, therefore, the greater her blameworthiness. From this, I arrive at a dilemma: either the belief (...) requirement is wrong, or lying isn’t interesting. I suggest an alternative necessary condition for lying on a degree-of-belief framework. (shrink)
In a recent paper, Martin Hackl and I identified a variety of circumstances where scalar implicatures, questions, definite descriptions, and sentences with the focus particle only are absent or unacceptable (Fox and Hackl 2006, henceforth F&H). We argued that the relevant effect is one of maximization failure (MF): an application of a maximization operator to a set that cannot have the required maximal member. We derived MF from our hypothesis that the set of degrees relevant for the semantics of degree (...) constructions is always dense (the Universal Density of Measurement, UDM). The goal of this paper is to present an apparent shortcoming of F&H and to argue that it is overcome once certain consequences of the proposal are shown to follow from more general properties of MF. Specifically, the apparent problem comes from evidence that the core generalizations argued for in F&H extend to areas for which an account in terms of density is unavailable. Nevertheless, I will argue that the account could still be right. Certain dense sets contain "too many alternatives" for there to be a maximal member, thus leading to MF. But, there are other sets that lead to the same predicament. My goal will be to characterize a general signature of MF in the hope that it could be used to determine the identity of alternatives in areas where their identity is not clear on independent grounds. (shrink)
In 1986, philosopher-bioethicist Samuel Gorovitz published an essay entitled “Baiting Bioethics,” in which he reported on various criticisms of bioethics that were “in print, or voiced in and around … the field” at that time, and set forth his assessment of their legitimacy. He gave detailed attention to what he judged to be the particularly fierce and “irresponsible attacks” on “the moral integrity” and soundness of bioethics contained in two papers: “Getting Ethics” by philosopher William Bennett and “Medical Morality Is (...) Not Bioethics,” coauthored by us. Gorovitz attributed some of the criticisms that bioethics was eliciting to the fact that this new, rapidly rising, and increasingly visible field had brought “scholars and practitioners together who otherwise would have little exposure to one another's disciplines. Their interactions are mutually enriching at times,” he declared, “but mutually baffling and even infuriating at other times.” In this latter regard, he suggested that “perhaps” Fox and Swazey's characterization of bioethics in the article he dissected “reflects a general revulsion at endeavors they see as inadequately like the social sciences or insufficiently respectful of them.” He went on to say that despite his objections to our “complaints” about bioethics—especially to our claim that “autonomy [had] been an unduly emphasized value” in the field—he had “a lingering sense” that there might be “a grain of truth” in them. Gorovitz ended his essay with an affirmation about the “benefit” that bioethics can derive from “responsible” and even from “irresponsible” criticism. “The unexamined discipline invites the philosopher's critical scrutiny no less than the unexamined life,” he aphoristically concluded. a. (shrink)
With A Theory of General Ethics Warwick Fox both defines the field of General Ethics and offers the first example of a truly general ethics. Specifically, he develops a single, integrated approach to ethics that encompasses the realms of interhuman ethics, the ethics of the natural environment, and the ethics of the built environment. Thus Fox offers what is in effect the first example of an ethical "Theory of Everything."Fox refers to his own approach to General Ethics as the "theory (...) of responsive cohesion." He argues that the best examples in any domain of interest--from psychology to politics, from conversations to theories--exemplify the quality of responsive cohesion, that is, they hold together by virtue of the mutual responsiveness of the elements that constitute them. Fox argues that the relational quality of responsive cohesion represents the most fundamental value there is. He then develops the theory of responsive cohesion, central features of which include the elaboration of a "theory of contexts" as well as a differentiated model of our obligations in respect of all beings. In doing this, he draws on cutting-edge work in cognitive science in order to develop a powerful distinction between beings who use language and beings that do not.Fox tests his theory against eighteen central problems in General Ethics--including challenges raised by abortion, euthanasia, personal obligations, politics, animal welfare, invasive species, ecological management, architecture, and planning--and shows that it offers sensible and defensible answers to the widest possible range of ethical problems. (shrink)
Rory Fox challenges the traditional understanding that Thomas Aquinas believed that God exists totally outside of time. His study investigates the work of several mid-thirteenth-century writers, and thus provides access to a wealth of material on medieval concepts of time and eternity.
In this comprehensive study, Marvin Fox offers an approach to Moses Maimonides that illuminates the intersections of his philosophical, religious, and Jewish visions—ideas that have embattled readers of Maimonides since the twelfth century.
This paper proposes an architecture for the mapping between syntax and phonology — in particular, that aspect of phonology that determines ordering. In Fox and Pesetsky (in prep.), we will argue that this architecture, when combined with a general theory of syntactic domains ("phases"), provides a new understanding of a variety of phenomena that have received diverse accounts in the literature. This shorter paper focuses on two processes, both drawn from Scandinavian: the familiar process of Object Shift and the less (...) well-known process of Quantifier Movement. We will argue that constraints on these operations can be seen as instances of the same property of grammar that explains the fact that movement is local and successive cyclic. We begin by sketching a model in which locality and successive cyclicity are consequences of the architecture that we propose, rather than specific facts about movement itself. We next present our proposal in somewhat greater detail, and show how it can account for a wide range of apparent limitations on movement — in particular, superficially contradictory restrictions on Object Shift and Quantifier Movement. The restrictions on Object Shift include those grouped under the rubric of Holmberg's Generalization, which Quantifier Movement does not seem to obey. We will argue that Quantifier Movement instead obeys a near mirror-image of Holmberg's Generalization (an "Inverse Holmberg Effect"), but that both Holmberg's Generalization and its mirror image are expected if our proposed architecture is correct. (shrink)
We formulate a Curry-typed logic with fine-grained intensionality within Turner’s typed predicate logic. This allows for an elegant presentation of a theory that corresponds to Fox and Lappin’s property theory with curry typing, but without the need for a federation of languages. We then consider how the fine-grained intensionality of this theory can be given an operational interpretation. This interpretation suggests itself as expressions in the theory can be viewed as terms in the untyped lambda-calculus, which provides a model of (...) computation. (shrink)
Thomas Edison's incandescent lamp was one of four that were displayed at the first international exhibition of electricity in Paris in 1881. By the end of the exhibition, most observers believed that Edison had taken a clear lead over his rivals: Maxim, Swan, and Lane-Fox. In reality, his victory was a narrow one that owed much to the skilful management of public opinion by his aides in Paris. Nevertheless, it reinforced Edison's view of Paris as the natural starting point for (...) the implantation of his system in continental Europe. Almost immediately, however, the three companies that he established for the purpose in Paris were in difficulties as the financial crash of January 1882 hardened into sustained recession. Quickly Edison's favour turned to Milan and, more particularly, Berlin, leaving the once central Parisian venture to become a minor element in his European strategy. (shrink)
In his prophetic poems Blake conceives a perfection of humanity defined in part by the complete mutuality of its interdependent genders. Yet throughout the same poems he represents one of those mutual, contrary, equal genders as inferior and dependent , or as unnaturally and disastrously dominant. Indeed, females are not only represented as weak or power-hungry, they come to represent weakness and power-hunger . Blake's philosophical principle of mutuality is thus undermined by stereotypical metaphors of femaleness which I believe he (...) adopted automatically in his early poems and then tried to redress but found himself trapped by in his late works. Susan Fox is currently working on a book of poems and has written articles on Spenser and Blake as well as Poetic Forms in Blake's Milton. She is an associate professor of English at Queens College of the City University of New York. (shrink)
Fox, Patricia Any study of recent publications, the statistics from diocesan websites and the litanies of anecdotal evidence reveals that the Church in Australia is at present being confronted by some very serious pastoral realities.1 In the face of this, I want to suggest that Vatican II's teaching on the call to holiness can open new pathways for the church by offering a significant challenge to the still widespread assumption among Catholics that God's call belongs only to a select few. (...) I want to propose that a restored and renewed theology of vocation needs to be a crucial element within the church's response to the serious pastoral situations confronting us. I will begin with the teaching on the call to holiness in Lumen Gentium, trace some developments towards a renewed pneumatology and theology of vocation that occurred in the wake of the conciliar teaching on holiness, and then consider briefly the creative impact of this on a theology of ministry and ministerial practice. I want to argue that there is an urgent pastoral necessity in this country for the leadership of the church, universal and local, to receive and enact the church's teaching on being called and sent. (shrink)
Michael W. Fox, the respected Vice President of the Humane Society of the United States, here looks at the biogenetic controversy and draws some troubling conclusions. Biogenetic research is capable of producing new life forms whose effects may alter the intricate balance of Nature in ways no one can foretell. "Superpigs" that grow larger than any pig before, cows that breed on an accelerated cycle, "new" vegetables, tomatoes that won't freeze - such new life forms can now be patented, making (...) them potential sources of enormous profits for biotech companies. And the record of government, academia, and industry is spotty at best at protecting the earth - yet these same forces are in control of the biogenetic future. Superpigs and Wondercorn is at once an eye-opening survey of a dramatic, sometimes frightening new technology and an impassioned plea to use these new tools in the long-term interests of the global ecosystem. (shrink)
The cipher of the zodiac Content Type Journal Article Category Book Symposium Pages 1-22 DOI 10.1007/s11016-012-9674-1 Authors Robert Fox, Faculty of History, Oxford University, George Street, Oxford, OX1 2RL UK Charles C. Gillispie, Program in History of Science, Department of History, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544, USA Theresa Levitt, Department of History, University of Mississippi, 310 Bishop Hall, University, MS 38677, USA David Aubin, Institut de Mathématiques de Jussieu, Histoire des sciences mathématique, UPMC - case postale 247, 4, place Jussieu, (...) 75252 Paris cedex 05, France Jed Z. Buchwald, Humanities and Social Sciences 101-40, Caltech, 1200 East California Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91125, USA Diane Greco Josefowicz, Writing Program, College of Arts and Sciences, Boston University, 730 Commonwealth Ave., Rm. 301, Boston, MA 02215, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796. (shrink)
Fox, Patricia The first time I heard the words 'Never waste a catastrophe!', they were spoken with an Australian accent during a hearing at the United Nations, in New York, May 2013. The topic was 'Sustainability and the Future of the Planet'. The speaker was describing how a recent catastrophic drought in Australia had provided an unexpected opportunity: it had enabled the disastrous state of the entire Murray-Darling River System to begin to be restored to health. He argued that such (...) had been the political stasis on this critical issue that only a mammoth disaster such as this was able to begin the processes necessary to unlock it. (shrink)
Foundations: A Manual for the Beginning Student of Epistemology provides the tools required for understanding traditional western epistemology, and an appreciation for its development into contemporary theories without using the traditional historic approach. Instead of requiring students to struggle through a myriad of epistemological works, each with its own unique perspective, presuppositions, and terminology in hopes that they emerge with a general sense of the field, Claude L. Fox conveys the traditional concepts of western epistemology by identifying its key components (...) and providing the student with an understanding of them. Equipped with this knowledge, students will possess the basic tools for understanding any traditional work they may study. Dr. Fox accomplishes this by first describing epistemology and ontology, then explaining how they constitute the field of metaphysics. Next, he examines the basic concepts of the two disciplines, concluding with the primary epistomelogical judgements and theories to which these concepts have given birth. (shrink)
Context: Although ethics consultation is commonplace in United States (U.S.) hospitals, descriptive data about this health service are lacking. Objective: To describe the prevalence, practitioners, and processes of ethics consultation in U.S. hospitals. Design: A 56-item phone or questionnaire survey of the "best informant" within each hospital. Participants: Random sample of 600 U.S. general hospitals, stratified by bed size. Results: The response rate was 87.4%. Ethics consultation services (ECSs) were found in 81% of all general hospitals in the U.S., and (...) in 100% of hospitals with more than 400 beds. The median number of consults performed by ECSs in the year prior to survey was 3. Most individuals performing ethics consultation were physicians (34%), nurses (31%), social workers (11%), or chaplains (10%). Only 41% had formal supervised training in ethics consultation. Consultation practices varied widely both within and between ECSs. For example, 65% of ECSs always made recommendations, whereas 6% never did. These findings highlight a need to clarify standards for ethics consultation practices. (shrink)
Recently there has been a lively revival of interest in implicatures, particularly scalar implicatures. Building on the resulting literature, our main goal in the present paper is to establish an empirical generalization, namely that SIs can occur systematically and freely in arbitrarily embedded positions. We are not so much concerned with the question whether drawing implicatures is a costly option (in terms of semantic processing, or of some other markedness measure). Nor are we specifically concerned with how implicatures come about (...) (even though, to get going, we will have to make some specific assumptions on this matter). The focus of our discussion is testing the claim of the pervasive embeddability of SIs in just about any context, a claim that remains so far controversial. While our main goal is the establishment of an empirical generalization, if we succeed, a predominant view on the division of labor between semantics and pragmatics will have to be revised. A secondary goal of this paper is to hint at evidence that a revision is needed on independent grounds. But let us first present, in a rather impressionistic way, the reasons why a revision would be required if our main generalization on embedded SIs turns out to be correct. In the tradition stemming from Grice (1989), implicatures are considered a wholly pragmatic phenomenon and SIs are often used as paramount examples. Within such a tradition, 㳊 semantics is taken to deal with the compositional construction of sentence meaning (a term which we are using for now in a loose, non technical way), while pragmatics deals with how sentence meaning is actually put to use (i.e. enriched and possibly modified through reasoning about speakers’ intentions, contextually relevant information, etc.). Simply put, on this view pragmatics takes place at the level of complete utterances and pragmatic enrichments are a root phenomenon (something that happens globally to sentences) rather than a compositional one.. (shrink)
This paper will be concerned with the conjunctive interpretation of a family of disjunctive constructions. The relevant conjunctive interpretation, sometimes referred to as a “free choice effect,” (FC) is attested when a disjunctive sentence is embedded under an existential modal operator. I will provide evidence that the relevant generalization extends (with some caveats) to all constructions in which a disjunctive sentence appears under the scope of an existential quantifier, as well as to seemingly unrelated constructions in which conjunction appears under (...) the scope of negation and a universal quantifier. (shrink)
The coming of bioethics -- The coming of bioethicists -- "Choices on our conscience": the inauguration of the Kennedy Institute of Education -- "Hello, Dolly": bioethics in the media -- Celebrating bioethics and bioethicists -- Thinking socially and culturally in bioethics -- Reminiscences of observing participants -- Bioethics circles the globe -- Bioethics in France -- The development of bioethics in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan -- The coming of the culture wars to American bioethics.
The notion of measurement plays a central role in human cognition. We measure people’s height, the weight of physical objects, the length of stretches of time, or the size of various collections of individuals. Measurements of height, weight, and the like are commonly thought of as mappings between objects and dense scales, while measurements of collections of individuals, as implemented for instance in counting, are assumed to involve discrete scales. It is also commonly assumed that natural language makes use of (...) both types of scales and subsequently distinguishes between two types of measurements. This paper argues against the latter assumption. It argues that natural language semantics treats all measurements uniformly as mappings from objects (individuals or collections of individuals) to dense scales, hence the Universal Density of Measurement (UDM). If the arguments are successful, there are a variety of consequences for semantics and pragmatics, and more generally for the place of the linguistic system within an overall architecture of cognition. (shrink)
This paper argues that “covert” operations like Quantifier Raising (QR) can precede “overt” operations. Specifically we argue that there are overt operations that must take the output of QR as their input. If this argument is successful there are two interesting consequences for the theory of grammar. First, there cannot be a “covert” (i.e. post-spellout) component of the grammar. That is, what distinguishes operations that affect phonology from those that do not cannot be an arbitrary point in the derivation (“spellout”) (...) before which the former apply and after which the latter do; all syntactic operations apply in the same component (henceforth ‘single component grammar’). Second, there must be some alternative means for distinguishing “overt” from “covert” operations. One such alternative, which we can call the ‘phonological theory of QR’, was suggested by Bobaljik (1995), Pesetsky (1998), Groat and O’Neil (1994). These authors proposed that the distinguishing property has to do with principles of the syntax-phonology interface. Assume that movement is a copying operation with phonology targeting one copy in a chain for pronunciation. The distinction between “overt” and “covert” movement, these authors suggest, is this: “overt” movements are the result of phonology targeting the head of a chain for.. (shrink)
This exploratory study examines how managers and professionals regard the ethical and social responsibility reputations of 60 well-known Australian and International companies, and how this in turn influences their attitudes and behaviour towards these organisations. More than 350 MBA, other postgraduate business students, and participants in Australian Institute of Management (Western Australia) management education programmes were surveyed to evaluate how ethical and socially responsible they believed the 60 organisations to be. The survey sought to determine what these participants considered ‘ethical’ (...) and ‘socially responsible’ behaviour in organisations to be. The survey also examined how the participants’ beliefs influenced their attitudes and intended behaviours towards these organisations. The results of this survey indicate that many managers and professionals have clear views about the ethical and social responsibility reputations of companies. This affects their attitudes towards these organisations which in turn has an impact on their intended behaviour towards them. These findings support the view in other research studies that well-educated managers and professionals are, to some extent, taking into account the ethical and social responsibility reputations of companies when deciding whether to work for them, use their services or buy shares in their companies. (shrink)
Machine ethics and robot rights are quickly becoming hot topics in artificial intelligence and robotics communities. We will argue that attempts to attribute moral agency and assign rights to all intelligent machines are misguided, whether applied to infrahuman or superhuman AIs, as are proposals to limit the negative effects of AIs by constraining their behavior. As an alternative, we propose a new science of safety engineering for intelligent artificial agents based on maximizing for what humans value. In particular, we challenge (...) the scientific community to develop intelligent systems that have human-friendly values that they provably retain, even under recursive self-improvement. (shrink)
To quote Yogi Berra, writing this editorial is a “déja vu all over again” experience for us. It entails not only collaborating once more as coauthors but also reiterating some of the criticisms and concerns that have figured prominently in virtually all our previous publications about bioethics—most recently in our book Observing Bioethics.
A Logical Form (LF) is a syntactic structure that is interpreted by the semantic component. For a particular structure to be a possible LF it has to be possible for syntax to generate it and for semantics to interpret it. The study of LF must therefore take into account both assumptions about syntax and about semantics, and since there is much disagreement in both areas, disagreements on LF have been plentiful. This makes the task of writing a survey article in (...) the field fairly difficult, a difficulty that is amplified by the amount of material that needs to be covered if the result is going to be in any way representative. My response to this difficulty is to limit my objectives. As a start, I will confine myself to issues relating to the syntactic positions of Quantificational Noun Phrases (QNPs) at LF and to various interpretive consequences. But even within these relatively narrow confines, I will not attempt anything close to a comprehensive survey. Instead my goal will be restricted to the presentation of one leading idea and to the discussion of some evidence that might bear on it.1 Much research on the nature of LF has consisted in attempts to account for the meaning of sentences containing QNPs. (shrink)
To promote ethical practices, healthcare managers must understand the ethical challenges encountered by key stakeholders. To characterize ethical challenges in Veterans Administration (VA) facilities from the perspectives of managers, clinicians, patients, and ethics consultants. We conducted focus groups with patients (n = 32) and managers (n = 38); semi-structured interviews with managers (n = 31), clinicians (n = 55), and ethics committee chairpersons (n = 21). Data were analyzed using content analysis. Managers reported that the greatest ethical challenge was fairly (...) distributing resources across programs and services, whereas clinicians identified the effect of resource constraints on patient care. Ethics committee chairpersons identified end-of-life care as the greatest ethical challenge, whereas patients identified obtaining fair, respectful, and caring treatment. Perspectives on ethical challenges varied depending on the respondent's role. Understanding these differences can help managers take practical steps to address these challenges. Further, ethics committees seemingly, are not addressing the range of ethical challenges within their institutions. (shrink)
Clinical bioethics is big business. There are now hundreds of people who bioethics in community and university hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation and home care settings, and some who play the role of clinical ethics consultant to transplant teams, managed care companies, and genetic testing firms. Still, there is as much speculation about what clinically active bioethicists actually do as there was ten years ago. Various commentators have pondered the need for training standards, credentials, exams, and malpractice insurance for ethicists engaged (...) in clinical consultation. Much of the discussion seems to accept an implicit presumption that all clinical ethics consultation practices look pretty much alike. But is this accurate? What do clinical ethicists do, how and where do they do it, and what kind of clinical ethics is useful in the hospital and in other settings? (shrink)
This book provides a systematic study of three foundational issues in the semantics of natural language that have been relatively neglected in the past few decades. focuses on the formal characterization of intensions, the nature of an adequate type system for natural language semantics, and the formal power of the semantic representation language proposes a theory that offers a promising framework for developing a computational semantic system sufficiently expressive to capture the properties of natural language meaning while remaining computationally tractable (...) written by two leading researchers and of interest to students and researchers in formal semantics, computational linguistics, logic, artificial intelligence, and the philosophy of language. (shrink)
It is well known that in Sluicing constructions wh-dependencies can cross certain projections that are otherwise barriers to movement (Ross (1969), Chomsky (1972)). This fact would follow under the assumption that the relevant barriers are somehow deactivated when phonologically deleted ('island repair'). The problem, however, is that another form of phonological deletion (VP Ellipsis, VPE) seems to be impossible in certain contexts where Sluicing allows for island repair (Chung et al. (1995), Merchant (1999)).
Schools are ideal settings for implementing multi-component programs to prevent and control childhood obesity. Thoughtful improvements to proven strategies, coupled with careful evaluation, can contribute to accumulation of evidence needed to design and implement the next generation of optimal interventions.
This new heuristic model of perceptual analysis raises interesting issues but in the end falls short. Its arguments are more in the Cartesian than Gestalt tradition. Much of the argument is based on setting up theoretical straw men and ignores well known perceptual and brain science. Arguments are reviewed in light of known physiology and traditional Gestalt theory.
This paper proposes a framework for formalising intuitions about the behaviour of imperative commands. It seeks to capture notions of satisfaction and coherence. Rules are proposed to express key aspects of the general logical behaviour of imperative constructions. A key objective is for the framework to allow patterns of behaviour to be described while avoiding making any commitments about how commands, and their satisfaction criteria, are to be interpreted. We consider the status of some conundrums of imperative logic in the (...) context of this proposal. (shrink)
It is well-known that constructions involving ellipsis share many properties with constructions that involve phonological reduction. The similarity between ECs and PRCs is semantic: the interpretation of both is constrained by the interpretation of an antecedent. Rooth and Tancredi have pointed out that this similarity follows from an independently needed theory of focus.
This Article considers the moral and legal status of practices that aim to modify traits in human offspring. As advancements in reproductive biotechnology give parents greater power to shape the genetic constitution of their children, an emerging school of legal scholars has ushered in a privatized paradigm of genetic control. Commentators defend a constitutionally protected right to prenatal engineering by appeal to the significance of procreative liberty and the promise of producing future generations who are more likely to have their (...) lives go well. This 'new eugenics,' however, confronts us with ethical challenges that neither liberal arguments about autonomy, fairness, and consent, nor utilitarian arguments about preferences, happiness, and equality, are able to capture. I begin by analyzing the Supreme Court's modern substantive due process jurisprudence, as it bears on recent advancements and controversies in genetic science. After developing a doctrinal framework that could support an asserted right to genetic engineering, I draw on empirical research in behavioral psychology to examine the influence of eugenic norms on egalitarian attitudes and institutions. I predict that if parents become accustomed to choosing the genes of their children, it would be radically more difficult to give an influential account for why the successful should adopt a charitable posture toward those who are less fortunate. I argue that by shifting control over offspring DNA from chance to choice, enhancement will inflate a sense of individual entitlement for social and economic outcomes. I conclude that increasing willingness to prevent the birth of abnormal children distracts attention from institutions that fail to accommodate the limitations of imperfect people. Some may reply that producing people who better fit the roles society chooses to reward need not deter us from providing for people whose abilities fail to meet the demands of modern society. However, this reply misses the way that changes in reproductive practices can bring about changes in the way that we understand our identities and relationships. Eugenic solutions to social problems such as poverty, crime, and unemployment reshape the challenge of genetic disadvantage so that it is no longer one we address through collective measures such as public education, social services, and income redistribution, and instead becomes one for individual parents to prevent through donor screening, embryo discard, or selective abortion. (shrink)