Ethical theory essays

My maxim, however, is to make a deceptive promise in order to get needed money. If you could, then your action is morally permissible.

Further, he thought that there is no real possibility of moral perfection in this life and indeed few of us fully deserve the happiness we are lucky enough to enjoy.

Ayn Rand (1905—1982)

For example, a moral nihilist would say that killing someone, for whatever reason, is intrinsically neither morally right nor morally wrong. If something is absolutely valuable, then we must act only on maxims that can be universal laws.

Insofar as we are rational, he says, we already necessarily will that all of our talents and abilities be developed. Aristotle rejected the notion of independently existing Forms and understood them instead as abstract universals.

But this is absurd. We are motivated by the mere conformity of our will to law as such. Since this is a principle stating only what some agent wills, it is subjective. Preference utilitarianism The concept of preference utilitarianism was first proposed in by John Harsanyi in Morality and the theory of rational behaviour, [56] but preference utilitarianism is more commonly associated with R.

Cambridge University Press, Written by a philosopher working within the Objectivist tradition, this scholarly work in epistemology focuses on the foundational role the senses play in human knowledge. Duties are rules or laws of some sort combined with some sort of felt constraint or incentive on our choices, whether from external coercion by others or from our own powers of reason.

For should this come to pass, it would not change the fact that each and every desire and interest could have run contrary to the moral law. The former are those "manifested by his observed behaviour, including preferences possibly based on erroneous factual beliefs[ clarification needed ], or on careless logical analysis, or on strong emotions that at the moment greatly hinder rational choice" whereas the latter are "the preferences he would have if he had all the relevant factual information, always reasoned with the greatest possible care, and were in a state of mind most conducive to rational choice.

And so, in order to solve the problem of destructive competition the lack of resources leads us to, a basic principle of ethics will be to urge individuals to sacrifice their interests in obtaining more, or even some, so that others may obtain more or some and society can exist peacefully.

An economic historian, Hessen argues and defends from an Objectivist perspective the moral and legal status of the corporate form of business organizations.


Yet in the Critique of Pure Reason, Kant also tried to show that every event has a cause. This is a third reason he gives for an a priori method, and it appears to have been of great importance to Kant: Error theoryanother form of moral anti-realism, holds that although ethical claims do express propositions, all such propositions are false.

However, it is not clear that this distinction is made in the academic literature. Thinking we are duty bound is simply respecting, as such, certain laws pertaining to us.

Daniel Dennett describes this as the Three Mile Island effect. Applying carefully selected rules at the social level and encouraging appropriate motives at the personal level is, so it is argued, likely to lead to a better overall outcome even if on some individual occasions it leads to the wrong action when assessed according to act utilitarian standards.


Moral relativism maintains that all moral judgments have their origins either in societal or in individual standards, and that no single objective standard exists by which one can assess the truth of a moral proposition.

Projectivism and moral fictionalism are related theories.

Ethics and Moral Theory Essay

Basic moral requirements retain their reason-giving force under any circumstance, they have universal validity. From then on, articles have debated this interpretation of Mill.

It is for them alone to point out what we ought to do… By the principle of utility is meant that principle which approves or disapproves of every action whatsoever according to the tendency it appears to have to augment or diminish the happiness of the party whose interest is in question: Korsgaard offers self-preservation as an example of an end in a negative sense: Also an introduction and overview of the major branches of Objectivist philosophy.

Mill anticipates the objection that people desire other things such as virtue. And insofar as humanity is a positive end in others, I must attempt to further their ends as well. An autonomous state is thus one in which the authority of its laws is in the will of the people in that state, rather than in the will of a people external to that state, as when one state imposes laws on another during occupation or colonization.


John Stuart Mill believed in an ethical theory known as utilitarianism and his theory is based on the principle of giving the greatest happiness to greatest number of. Welcome!

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Ayn Rand (1905—1982)

ETHICAL THEORIES 1. Utilitarianism The utilitarian ethical theory is founded on the ability to predict the consequences of an action.

To a utilitarian, the choice that yields the greatest benefit to the most people is the choice that is ethically correct. Ethical Theories essaysIn ethics, narrative theories propose principle or principles for distinguishing right actions from wrong actions.

Two broad categories of ethical theories exist. These theories can for convenience be divided into consequential (teleological) principals or on non-consequential. A theory is a structured set of statements used to explain (or predict) a set of facts or concepts.Ý A moral theory, then, explains why a certain action is wrong — or why we ought to act in certain ways.ÝÝ In short, it is a theory of how we determine right and wrong conduct.Ý Also, moral theories provide the framework upon which we think.

Utilitarianism is an ethical theory that states that the best action is the one that maximizes utility, which is usually defined as that which produces the greatest well-being of the greatest number of people, and in some cases, sentient animals.

Jeremy Bentham, the founder of utilitarianism, described utility as the sum of all pleasure that results from an action, minus the suffering of.

Ethical theory essays
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