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I really liked the setup of this class, such as the frequent blogging because it allowed me to understand theories and ideas that we discussed in class of famous philosophers from the point of view of my classmates.  It allowed me to understand it from my peers in words that i understand better than the book.  The philosopher that i enjoyed the most would have to be Mill.  It was interesting to debate the different ideas he had and how he defended his Utilitarian viewpoints.  Overall the class taught me how to think about topics in a more philosophical sense.  See you around Boone.


As we have concluded Aristotle doesn’t focus his theory on the moral worth of any specific action but on the moral worth of a single person.  So in the case of the act of murder, a person cannot possibly be seen as having any moral worth.  But like other theories in philosophy, the conclusions often are decided by how one defines the action.  Murder could be defined as an action carried out violently with rage and a harmful purpose in which case the individual murdering someone has no moral worth because they become heartless animals.  But another case could be one who is acting in self defense and murders one who had intentions of harming people around them in which case the individual that murdered the threat could be seen as a hero and therefore could have a higher level of moral worth from their action.

I think that everyone is subject to the moral contract but it through different punishments depending on ones age that allows people as they grow older to be more and more strictly subject to moral contract.  In other words children are still subject to to contract but if a rule is broken different punishments are dealt to children because they have yet to learn all the rules of society but through these experiences and less drastic punishments the youth learns and when they become older they should realize the exact boundaries to their actions.

I feel that government sets rules that governs how we behave and has a moral obligation to keep its citizens under its power safe by setting rules that are efficient at keeping the people humane.  Government may at times seems to cause immoral actions like war.  For example when George Bush claimed that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, and then we went in and found no signs of the weapons yet despite the immoral action of the invasion we dismantled an evil regime.  Therefore governments can be subject to moral judgments yet it is to an extent because it is looked at in almost a Utilitarian standpoint by concerning their actions around the overall safety of its people.

I am not entirely convinced by Hobbes’ theory that the make-up of human nature will lead to a state of war in the world.  He explains the reasons for how a “quarrel” always emerges with men, by listing desires of what he says is all men. Some are competition, diffidence, glory, and reputation.  I don’t believe that becuase of these parts of human nature that it would cause such constant war, as he says.  I think that war is caused by some of these emotions built inside of every person, but war is a drastic action, and if human nature leads to nothing but war that would mean we are all very aggressive beings, which I don’t believe is true.

When looking back on whether i feel that Kant or Mill is more controversial, i believe that I am more troubled by the way Mill attempts to defend attacks to utilitarianism then by the way Kant tries to reinforce his idea of the categorical imperative.  I am more troubled by the fact that Mill will try to twist any objection to try to justify his theory than i am to the fact that Kant’s theory, although hypocritical at times, is left alone and not defended in unconvincing ways.

In kant’s theory he suggests that if satisfaction or even happiness is taken from an action than it is immoral because you did it out of self-love.  The theory then revolves around the motive of the action instead of the outcome on whether it is moral or not.  But how can you say an action is immoral if it has a positive outcome every time yet the one who acted takes pleasure out of the action?  This is why i do not agree with Kant’s theory.

According to Kant’s Categorical Imperative theory, you should only act in a way that your maxim can be willed into universal law.  Therefore one should only act if the action will be moral if everyone were to do it.  But if one person cheated then they might benefit because they will pass a test.  Then if that action were to be made universal, or if everyone were to cheat than the test would be discounted and therefore the action would not have benefits.  THis is why according to Kant’s theory the action of cheating is immoral.

Depending on the definition of intrinsic some may say that happiness can be both extrinsic and intrinsic.  But if one were to define it as something belonging to the nature of a thing, or something with value within itself.  But i believe that happiness does not have any intrinsic value because something must make one happy you cannot have happiness within yourself it has to come from somewhere.

If i had one question to ask John Stuart Mill about the theory of Utilitarianism i would ask him how Utilitarianism is a good theory if objections have come about that are legitimate and have some success in proving the theory to be too demanding.  I would ask him if the theory is a good one then why can the theory be interpreted in different ways to accommodate everyone.  I feel that Mill describes the theory as a sufficient part of following a code of ethics but the theory shows some flaws along the way that need more explanation.