According to Michael Friedman’s theory of explanation, a law X explains laws Y1, Y2, …, Yn precisely when X unifies the Y’s, where unification is understood in terms of reducing the number of independently acceptable laws. Philip Kitcher criticized Friedman’s theory but did not analyze the concept of independent acceptability. Here we show that Kitcher’s objection can be met by modifying an element in Friedman’s account. In addition, we argue that there are serious objections to the use that Friedman (...) makes of the concept of independent acceptability. (shrink)
International human rights law that protects freedom of the press provides a cross-culturally reliable foundation from which to launch a consideration of universal principles in journalism ethics. After examining certain assumptions made by the international law about individuals and about the kind of journalism the law intends to protect, in this article I propose that truthtelling, independence, and freedom with responsibility are universal ethical principles international law envisions for journalists. These principles would undoubtedly be applied differentially in different cultures, but (...) I conclude that the culturally specific ways journalists analyze ethical dilemmas can arise from a common concern for the 3 principles. (shrink)
The thesis that rationality consists in the straight-forward maximization of utility has not lacked critics. Typically, however, detractors reject the Humean picture of rationality upon which it seems based; they seek to emancipate reason from the tyranny of the passions. It is, then, noteworthy when an attack on this thesis comes from ‘within the ranks.’David Gauthier's paper ‘Reason and Maximization’ is just such an attack; and for this reason, among others, it is interesting. It is not successful, though. In defense (...) of this conclusion, we shall begin by relating the essentials of Gauthier's argument. Then we shall examine in some detail Gauthier's claim that the principle of straighforward max-imization fails to be self-supporting. We shall argue that Gauthier's defense of this claim is at best incomplete. Finally, we shall show that the fact that a normative principle is self-subverting or non-self-supporting does not entail that the principle is defective. (shrink)
Recently, the focus in source rock exploration has moved from gas-rich to liquid-rich plays and warrants revisiting “bypassed” hydrocarbon charged source rocks, which were deemed uneconomic when first drilled. In North America’s oil fields, there are thousands of wells with different vintages of nuclear and electrical logs, yet these wells generally lack any advanced logs beyond the traditional triple combo. We have developed a workflow that uses a considerable amount of laboratory measurements made on crushed rock to upscale a petrophysical (...) model based on a triple combo logging suite only. The model divides the field in oil window and gas window fairways and in petrophysical units. The remaining hydrocarbon generation potential is based on geochemical measurements, such as thermal maturity and total organic carbon content, from core and cuttings in the area. The petrophysical units reflect major geologic intervals with similar porosity and clay content. The workflow was sequentially built by correlating logs with core measurements, using TOC and maturity for organic matter, X-ray diffraction for mineralogy and grain density, porosity, and water saturation from fluids extraction, for volumetrics. The model is applied to the Mancos Shale, a Cretaceous-age source rock, which includes the Niobrara Formation. The Mancos Shale has been penetrated in various fields while developing conventional sandstone reservoirs. The model is validated with measurements on a core recently acquired in the anticipated high-hydrocarbon-yield window. Petrophysical properties predicted from logs agree well with core measurements in blind tests, demonstrating the robustness of the model despite being based on a basic suite of logs and a simple deterministic approach. This model is now routinely used by the asset team as an automated workflow to generate fairway maps, locate sweet spots, and for landing lateral wells. (shrink)
In The Stillborn God, Mark Lilla argues that political theology invariably leads to apocalyptic politics, and that we can avoid this fate only by maintaining a ?Great Separation? between politics and religion, such as the one that Hobbes initiated, but which was overturned by Rousseau and German liberal theology?leading to Nazism. We argue that Hobbes never established such a divide; political theology is far more diverse than Lilla suggests; and liberal German political theology was not a significant source of Nazism. (...) Moreover, liberalism is itself a political theology, suggesting that religion and politics should not, and perhaps cannot, be divided?although they may be reconciled. (shrink)
This article argues that a potential expert witness's decision about testifying for a libel plaintif should not be driven by an unexamined loyalty to journalists, to the press, or to broad principles of expression. Real harm done to a plaintif by libel and the advantage to the press corps and to the system of expression of having a knowledgeable expert testihing for a libel plaintif are discussed as factors that might outweigh the traditional loyalties. An ethical framework is offered to (...) help journalists and journalism educators make a reasoned determination based on what is fair and responsible for the plaintiffand for the defendant. (shrink)
This essay provides a timeline charting contact between Michael Polanyi and William H. Poteat. We trace the contours of the intimate, multifaceted, and mutually influential friendship of Polanyi and Poteat which developed over more than twenty years.
Through an analysis and explication of William James’s writings, such as “The Moral Philosopher and the Moral Life” and The Varieties of Religious Experience, Michael Slater successfully defends the argument “that on James’s view morality cannot be finally separated from religion, because there are moral goods that only religious faith—and in some cases, only the objects of religious faith—can plausibly bring about” (7). Slater advances this argument by making two significant claims concerning James’s work. First, James’s ethics require (...) “the possession of a morally strenuous attitude” (7). By emphasizing our attitudes and dispositions, rather than the calculations or consequences of our moral actions, Slater .. (shrink)
Participants have known Poteat as teacher or colleague or author over various periods of time and assess him according to these various relationships. Polanyi is given less attention largely because he has been less difficult to understand. Poteat’s approach is the more radical because he attempts to take the implications of Polanyi’s thinking further. Central to comprehending the nature of their differences are an understanding of their different perceptions of transcendence and of the contrasting groundings they provide for reality.