Three Ethical Approaches

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For example if an extreme drinker s someone who drinks six liters a day of vodka, then is three liters a day a moderate drinker? Markets operate without depending on the virtue Of the business people who trade in them. But in practice ethical behavior is admired. Political campaigners like to focus on the ethical shortcomings of business, while businesses poke fun at the ethical shortcomings of political leaders. Duty (Deontological) Ethics The most primitive ethical systems seem to be based on a system of obligations. The child does what the parent wants because the parent says so.

Thus “deontological” (from the Greek word vetoed, denotes, “duty”, which rives from the Greek word for “bind”) ethics starts from the idea that some things are just wrong and mustn’t be done. The key idea here is that the intent to obey the rule is more important than the outcome. Goodness is the ability to understand and act on moral obligations. Fundamental binding principles should govern an individual or firm’s behavior under any circumstance. The two main sources of such principles are religions and Kantian ethics. Religions have rules attributed to revelation from God or advice handed down from religious leaders.

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Religions have different rules about what believers would eat or do on certain holy days, but many base their general guides to action Many Religious Principles Make Good Consequential Social Sense Jude-Christian Love thy neighbor as thyself – has good consequences for neighborliness! Native American Walk in the other person’s moccasins – helps see other people’s point of view. Hindu What goes around comes around (karma) – so don’t be evil. Confucian Reciprocity (to be a better person) – what you aspire to be is a socially integrated person. I on principles of reciprocity and symmetry.

Religions have the advantage that their rules are accompanied by maxims and parables to guide behavior. A moon belief provides support and motivation from fellow believers to follow through on the desired behavior. Consequential Ethics (Including Utilitarianism) Consequential or teleological ethics abandons the criterion of motive and focuses attention on the outcomes of actions. Fifth outcome is good the related actions are likely to be good -? regardless of the motivation of the individual actor. The fact that someone has good motives for an act is not enough to ensure that it is ethically good. Utilitarian are that large group of consequentialness who believe that the outcomes of government and business policies can be predicted and assured. As John Stuart Mill said: “Public policies should be judged by their consequences. ” Actions are right as they tend to promote happiness – the greatest good of the greatest number – and wrong as they tend to produce the reverse of happiness. A large part of the activity of economists is showing how public policies produce “unintended consequences” that are bad. Sometimes economists can even show that the consequences are the opposite of those intended.

But utilitarian are split over the issue of who is to decide what the greatest good is. Those who seek to use government power to give people what they ought to want whether or not they realize that it is good for them are called managerial liberals. Those who are more interested in addressing what people actually do want – whether or not obtaining this will, objectively speaking, turn out to be good for them – are called subjectivists. Those who believe that businesses should respond without questions to Nags that are active on behalf of consumers or investors might be described as subjectivists.

Those who disagree on the grounds that government should be the ones to decide how businesses respond might be managerial liberals. Life of Aristotle Aristotle was born in Staggers, a Greek colony in Macedonia, in 384 BC. Generations of Aristotle family including his father, Insomuch, had served as physicians to the Kings of Macedonia. His parents died when he was about ten years old and he was taken in by foster parents: Proposes and his wife. He moved to Athens at the age of seventeen, and he remained there for some twenty years. This is where he got his first taste of the sciences and actively became a teacher.

He studied under Plato, whose influences are most apparent in Aristotle theoretical and practical philosophies. He greatly admired Plato all the way to his death, despite the fact that he later opposed some of his most important points. Aristotle was married twice, first to the foster daughter of his noble friend Heresies, named Pithily. After her death he married Horseplay, who came from his birthplace, Staggers. There was some controversy surrounding this marriage because Horseplay did not have as high a social position as his first wife, Pithily.

Horseplay gave birth to his son Insomuch and was entrusted with the care of his daughter from his first marriage. After the death of Alexander the Great, Athens was taken over by people who did NT like Alexander. They suspected Aristotle of sympathizing with Alexander, and he Was exiled from Athens. Aristotle died in 322 BC at the age of sixty-two in Challis on the island of Above, which had granted him refuge when he was exiled from Athens. Profile of Aristotle Full Name:Aristotle Important Dates in the Life of Aristotle: Born: c. 384 BCC in Stagier, Macedonia Died: c. 22 BCC Who was Aristotle? : Aristotle was an ancient Greek philosopher whose work has been extremely important to the development of both western philosophy and western theology. It has traditionally been thought that Aristotle started out n agreement with Plato and gradually moved away from his ideas, but recent research suggests just the opposite. Important Books by Aristotle: Very little of what we have appears to have been published by Aristotle himself. Instead, we have notes from his school, much of which were created by his students during the time Aristotle taught.

Aristotle himself wrote a few works intended for publication, but we only have fragments of these. Major works: Categories Organ Physics Metaphysics Mechanical Ethics Politics Rhetoric Poetics Famous Quotations by Aristotle: “Man is by nature a political animal. ” (Politics) Excellence or virtue is a settled disposition of the mind that determines our choice of actions and emotions and consists essentially in observing the mean relative to us a mean been two vices, that which depends on excess and that which depends on defect. (Mechanical Ethics) Early Life ; Background of Aristotle: Aristotle came to Athens as a teenager and studied with Plato for 17 years. After Plat’s death in 347 BCC, he traveled widely and ended up in Macedonia where he served as the private tutor of Alexander the Great. In 335 he returned to Athens and founded his own school, called the Lyceum. He was arced to leave in 323 because the death of Alexander allowed free reign to anti-Macedonian sentiment and Aristotle was too close to the conqueror to dare stick around.

Aristotle and Philosophy: In Organ and similar works, Aristotle develops a comprehensive system of logic and reasoning for addressing problems of logic, being and reality. In Physics, Aristotle investigates the nature of causation and, hence, our ability to explain what we see and experience. In Metaphysics (which got its name not from Aristotle, but from a later librarian who needed a title for it and, because it was shelved following Physics, got the name After-Physics),

Aristotle engages in a very abstract discussion of being and existence in his attempts to justify his other work on causation, experience, etc. In Mechanical Ethics, among other works, Aristotle explores the nature of ethical conduct, arguing that an ethical life involves achieving happiness and that happiness is best achieved through rational thought and contemplation. Aristotle also defended the idea that ethical conduct derives from human virtues and that virtues are themselves a product of moderation between extremes.

With regards to politics, Aristotle argued that humans are, by nature, political animals. This means that humans are also social animals and that any understanding of human behavior and human needs must include social considerations. He also investigated the merits of various kinds of political systems, describing their different virtues and vices. His classification system of monarchies, oligarchies, tyrannies, democracies and republics is still used today. Aristotle Contribution to Learning & Behavior Aristotle, who lived and taught in Greece around 350 B.

C. , contributed several basic ideas relating to learning and behavior that reappear many centuries later to influence the development of Psychology. These include Aristotle conception of the life-force, “psyche,” or “soul” that distinguishes the animate from the inanimate, his elucidation of the four “causes,” and his ideas about the factors involved in memory. The Three Souls The ancient Greeks, including Aristotle, were puzzled by the obvious differences between living and nonliving things and sought to account for these differences.

They were hampered in this endeavor by an inadequate understanding of chemistry and physiology; for example, they had no idea that the function breathing is to bring oxygen into the lungs and carry off arbor dioxide. Living things seemed to ‘have” something that nonliving things lacked, an animating principle which the Greeks called the “psyche,” a term that has usually been translated into English as “soul. ” A living human being breathed and was warm; a dead one did not breathe and was cold. It seemed logical to conclude that the human psyche had something to do with warmth and breath.

The dead were cold and did not breathe because their psyches had left them. Aristotle elaborated on this basic theme by suggesting that different types of living things have different kinds of psyche, which infer on them different properties or abilities. Plants could take in nourishment, grow, and reproduce themselves, so Aristotle suggested that they possessed a ” nutritive” or “vegetative” soul which conferred these abilities upon them. Animals could also take in nourishment, grow and reproduce, but in addition they had the power to sense and to move.

These powers were conferred upon the animal by its “sensitive” soul. Finally, human beings could do everything plants and animals could do (take in nourishment, grow, reproduce, sense, move) but in addition had the power to think, to reason. Humans must therefore have a different, more capable soul than other animals, which Aristotle termed the “rational soul. ” Possession of these different psyches or souls is used to explain the different abilities of plants, animals, and human beings, but as the explanation stands it is circular. Why does a human being have the ability to reason?

Because humans have a rational soul. How do we know that humans have a rational soul? Because they are able to reason. We are given no reason to believe in the existence of these different souls other than the differences in ability that the different lulls were invented to explain. Aristotle labels do serve, however, to identify what he believed were the basic functional differences between plants, animals, and human beings. The Four Causes Aristotle distinguished among four causes, or reasons why something is as it is: efficient, formal, material, and final.

Efficient causation is what we would today refer to as mechanical causation, or cause and effect. Formal causation refers to the form something takes a statue of Atlas is a statue of Atlas rather than a marble table because of its form. Material causation refers to he material out of which something is made a statue of marble is brittle because it is made from marble rather than bronze. Finally, final causation refers to the end for which something exists. For example, wings exist for the purpose of flight.

Our interest here is in the first and last of Aristotle four causes efficient causation and final causation. Efficient causation is at the heart of modern explanations of phenomena. Such causes precede their effects and constitute the explanation for those effects. Example: Thunder is caused by the explosive expansion of air heated by a large, sudden flow of electricity through it, which produces vibrations in the air that we perceive as thunder. Although Aristotle principle of efficient causation is accepted today, his principle of final causation has often been misunderstood and rejected as unscientific.

It has been confused with the notion that the end somehow brings about its own means. This idea would have it that a bird has wings because it needs them to fly. Somehow the need to fly causes wings to develop. That sort of idea is properly rejected as unscientific, but it was not Aristotle conception of final causation. Rather, Aristotle is saying that, to understand why something has certain properties, one must know what function or functions it serves for its possessor: Our knowledge [of such structures] must come from a study of their functions. [De Partials Animal II, Chi. 9: Bibb 21. ] For example, to understand why the heart has the structure it does, One must know what the heart does: it pumps blood. Today we would say that “form follows function. ” Aristotle views these functions in terms of their contribution to the survival of the organism: A being which has no sensation when it comes into contact with other things ill be unable to avoid some and seize others. And if this is so, it will be impossible for the animal to sun. ‘vive. De Anima Ill] Aristotle had no concept of evolution, but over 2,000 years later Charles Darwin would propose a theory of the evolution of species that would at last explain how organisms come to have just those parts whose functions enable them to survive and reproduce. On Memory Another topic on which Aristotle wrote that is of interest to us in the study of learning and behavior concerns how people are able to recall things. He suggested that the recollection or observance of one thing will tend to acclimate the recall of another according to three basic principles: contiguity, similarity, and contrast.

According to the principle of contiguity, one idea will tend to bring to mind another when the two have in the past been experienced together (contiguity refers to “togetherness” in space or time). The similarity principle states that one thing will tend to facilitate recall of another to the extent that the two are similar. Thus, on viewing a beautiful sunset you may suddenly recall the scene of another day when you witnessed a similarly beautiful sunset.

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