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Author Topic: Abortion  (Read 14153 times)

littlemonkey

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #90 on: April 17, 2006, 08:46:29 AM »
That pictures are so horrible and bloody,why post them on this board?Do you think you
cann't express yourself well except these bloody pictures? >:(

erinbrockovich

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #91 on: April 17, 2006, 05:17:57 PM »

Looks like an utilitarian perspective, this one, florida!


Utilitarianism was originally proposed by David Hume but later given a definitive formulation in 18th century England by Jeremy Bentham and others such as John Stuart Mill. From the principle of utility, Bentham found pain and pleasure to be the only absolutes in the world: "nature has put man under the governance of two sovereign masters: pleasure and pain." From this he derived the rule of utility: that the good is whatever brings the greatest happiness to the greatest number of people. Later, after realizing that the formulation recognized two different and potentially conflicting principles, he dropped the second part and talked simply about "the greatest happiness principle."

John Stuart Mill wrote a famous (and short) book titled Utilitarianism. Mill differs from many current utilitarians in that he considered cultural and spiritual happiness to be of greater value than mere physical pleasure. In his essay On Liberty and other works, Mill argued that utilitarianism requires that political arrangements satisfy the "liberty principle", according to which each person must be guaranteed the greatest possible liberty that would not interfere with the liberty of others, so that each person may maximize his or her happiness.

A surgeon has five terminal patients: one needs a liver, one needs a pancreas, one needs a heart, and two need kidneys. A sixth, non-terminal patient just came in to have his appendix removed. Should the surgeon kill the sixth man and pass his organs around to the others? Or, indeed, what would stop him from simply hunting down and slaughtering the first healthy man (the seventh) he comes across on the street, patient or non-patient? Many people would feel that these actions violate the rights of the sixth/seventh man, but utilitarianism initially seems to imply that, given a purely binary choice between (1) killing one man and distributing his organs or (2) not doing so and thus allowing the five terminal patients to die, violating one man's rights is exactly what we ought to do. Of course, there might be reasons for the act utilitarian to refrain from killing the sixth/seventh man, but most would agree that rule utilitarianism can provide more unconditional reasons not to kill him.

To determine whether a rule is good or bad, you looks at what would happen if it was constantly followed. If the encounters the situation described above, one potential rule that might apply would be: "whenever a surgeon could kill one relatively healthy person in order to transplant his organs to more than one other person who needs them, he ought to do so." This rule, if instituted in society, would obviously lead to bad consequences. Relatively healthy people would stop going to the hospital, we'd end up performing many risky transplant operations, etc. So a rule utilitarian would also say we should implement the opposite rule: "don't harvest healthy people's organs to give them to sick people." Therefore, if the surgeon killed the sixth/seventh man, then he would be doing the wrong thing.

Rule utilitarianism has been criticized for advocating general rules that will in some specific circumstances clearly decrease happiness if followed. To never kill a human might seem to be a good rule, but this could make defence against aggressors very difficult. Rule utilitarians would then add that there are general exception rules that allows the breaking of other rules if this increases happiness, one example being self-defense. Critics would then argue that this reduces rule utilitarianism to act utilitarianism, the rules become meaningless. Rule utilitarians respond that the rules in the legal system (i.e., laws) which regulate such situations are not meaningless. For instance, claimed self-defense might shift the burden of proof.

Rule utilitarianism should not be confused with rules of thumb. Many act utilitarians agree that it makes sense to decide ahead of time on certain rules to follow if they find themselves in a situation in which the consequences are difficult, costly, or time-consuming to calculate exactly. If the consequences calculated relatively clearly and without much doubt, and then the general rules can be ignored. If two rules of thumb seem to be in conflict, one might first look to rules which might have been main detailing when the first rules might not apply. If this doesn't provide a solution, it makes sense to look beyond the rules and do a more complete calculation.

gimme

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #92 on: April 18, 2006, 03:43:26 PM »


Utilitarianism was originally proposed by David Hume but later given a definitive formulation in 18th century England by Jeremy Bentham and others such as John Stuart Mill. From the principle of utility, Bentham found pain and pleasure to be the only absolutes in the world: "nature has put man under the governance of two sovereign masters: pleasure and pain." From this he derived the rule of utility: that the good is whatever brings the greatest happiness to the greatest number of people. Later, after realizing that the formulation recognized two different and potentially conflicting principles, he dropped the second part and talked simply about "the greatest happiness principle."


that's to say that if slavery or torture is beneficial for the population as a whole, it could theoretically be justified by utilitarianism. Is it not then that utilitarian theory overlooks the rights of minority groups? It might also ignore the rights of the majority. A man might achieve such pure ecstasy from killing 100 people so that his positive utility outweighs the negative utility of the 100 people he murdered.

miamivice

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #93 on: April 18, 2006, 07:38:40 PM »

John Stuart Mill wrote a famous (and short) book titled Utilitarianism. Mill differs from many current utilitarians in that he considered cultural and spiritual happiness to be of greater value than mere physical pleasure. In his essay On Liberty and other works, Mill argued that utilitarianism requires that political arrangements satisfy the "liberty principle", according to which each person must be guaranteed the greatest possible liberty that would not interfere with the liberty of others, so that each person may maximize his or her happiness. The classic utilitarianism of Bentham and Mill influenced many other philosophers and the development of the broader concept of consequentialism. As a result, the correct definitions of utilitarianism and consequentialism and the exact difference between these two principles are not always entirely clear, even among philosophers.


Immanuel Kant expressed extreme dissatisfaction with the consequentialist standard that may indicate that murder is wrong because it does not maximize good for the greatest number; but this would be irrelevant to someone who is not interested in maximizing the good. Consequently, Kant argued, hypothetical moral systems cannot persuade moral action or be regarded as bases for moral judgments against others, because the imperatives they are based on rely too heavily on subjective considerations.

"If A, then B," where A is a condition or goal, and B is an action. For example, if you wish to remain healthy, then you should not eat spoiled food.

Such a hypothetical imperative, according to Kant, is not justified in itself, but as a means to an end; whether it is in force as a command depends on whether the end it helps attain is desired (or required). The opposite of a hypothetical imperative is a categorical imperative, which is unconditional and an end in itself.

  • "Act only according to that maxim by which you can at the same time will that it would become a universal law."
  • "Act in such a way that you always treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, never simply as a means, but always at the same time as an end."
  • "So act as though you were through your maxims a law-making member of a kingdom of ends."

In contrast to Hume, Kant viewed the human individual as a rationally autonomous self-conscious being with full freedom of action and self-determination. For a will to be considered "free", we must understand it as capable of effecting causal power without being caused to do so. But the idea of lawless free will, that is -- a will acting without any causal structure -- is incomprehensible. Therefore, a free will must be acting under laws that it gives to itself, and which are universally and objectively valid. Although Kant conceded that there could be no conceivable example of free will, because any example would only show us a will as it appears to us -- as a subject of natural laws -- he nevertheless argued against determinism. He proposed that determinism is logically inconsistent: The determinist claims that because A caused B, and B caused C, that A is the true cause of C. Applied to a case of the human will, a determinist would be arguing that the will does not have causal power because something else had caused the will to act as it did. But that argument merely assumes what it set out to prove; that the human will is not part of the causal chain.

Secondly, Kant remarks that free will is inherently unknowable. Since even a free person could not possibly have knowledge of his own freedom, we cannot use our failure to find a proof for freedom as evidence for a lack of it. The observable world could never contain an example of freedom because it would never show us a will as it appears to itself, but only a will that is subject to natural laws imposed on it. But we do appear to ourselves as free. Therefore he argued for the idea of transcendental freedom -- that is, freedom as a presupposition of the question "what ought I to do?" This is what gives us sufficient basis for ascribing moral responsibility: the rational and self-actualizing power of a person, which he calls moral autonomy: "the property the will has of being a law unto itself".

The Inquiring Murderer

One of the first major challenges to Kant's reasoning came from the Swiss philosopher Benjamin Constant, who asserted that since truth telling must be universal, according to Kant's theories, one must (if asked) tell a known murderer the location of his prey. This challenge occurred while Kant was still alive, and his response was the essay "On a Supposed Right to Tell Lies from Benevolent Motives." In this reply, Kant agreed with Constant, and argued that it is indeed one's moral duty to be truthful to a murderer.

Kant argued that telling the truth to the murderer is required because moral actions do not derive their worth from the expected consequences. He claimed that because lying to the murderer would treat him as a mere means to another end, the lie denies the rationality of another person, and therefore denies the possibility of there being free rational action at all. This lie results in a contradiction in conceivability and ergo the lie is in conflict with duty. Furthermore, Kant questioned our ability to know that the expected future outcomes of our actions would actually occur. For example, suppose Jim said that the victim was in the park, when he thought the target was in the library. However, unbeknownst to Jim, the victim actually left the library and went to the park. The lie would actually lead the murderer to the victim, which would make Jim responsible for the murder. Another example post-Kantians bring up is that one would not be morally responsible for the action anyway; the murderer would be. If one told the truth, it might turn out the murderer decides not to murder after all.
To some D.C. lawyer "the law" is a punch line or an antiquated concept used by barbarians and bullies. To the men in authority it is license to exploit their power autocratically. To the racist it is a cover for bigotry and arrogance.

TM

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #94 on: April 19, 2006, 07:12:28 AM »
Very interesting, miami, thanks for the primer!

W

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #95 on: April 22, 2006, 07:33:47 AM »
BUMP

lolla

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #96 on: April 23, 2006, 08:33:38 PM »


Utilitarianism was originally proposed by David Hume but later given a definitive formulation in 18th century England by Jeremy Bentham and others such as John Stuart Mill. From the principle of utility, Bentham found pain and pleasure to be the only absolutes in the world: "nature has put man under the governance of two sovereign masters: pleasure and pain." From this he derived the rule of utility: that the good is whatever brings the greatest happiness to the greatest number of people. Later, after realizing that the formulation recognized two different and potentially conflicting principles, he dropped the second part and talked simply about "the greatest happiness principle."


that's to say that if slavery or torture is beneficial for the population as a whole, it could theoretically be justified by utilitarianism. Is it not then that utilitarian theory overlooks the rights of minority groups? It might also ignore the rights of the majority. A man might achieve such pure ecstasy from killing 100 people so that his positive utility outweighs the negative utility of the 100 people he murdered.

Utilitarianism is for dumb @ # ! * s who write whatever your male private part wants, like,

1+1=0
1+1=2
1+1=3

Oh well, I just want your mommy and daddy to have three of you (you included) to @ # ! * the shitta outta
 

SymphonyOfDreams

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #97 on: April 24, 2006, 11:06:45 AM »
Why dont we move away from the moral issue, and address a legal issue. Abortion as an action with legal consecuences.

I dont know how sucesoral rights work in the US, however in most Franco-Roman oriented legislations, the mere conception generates patrimony rights for the unborn infant (of course, conditioned), not 3 months nor 2 weeks after, it's exactly after conception.

Really, from a legal standpoint, there is no difference between a week old fetus or a 9 month old fetus, so it will be hard for any legislation or court to justify any differences between the two, thus making any judgement on that case too vague to sustain itself on its own.

You may try to argue the biology or the moral issue, but there's no way around it legally.

So you are facing a stalemate... to wich using a law and economics aproach tends to serve as an escape valve. Then you would have to try and determin the most cost-efficient solution to a social and private matter. A solution that won't necesarily solve your problem regarding the sucesoral principle...

What do you guys think if see it from the legal standpoint, eh?

Leaf2001br

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #98 on: April 25, 2006, 01:44:56 AM »
50 years ago an interracial married couple had no legal rights.
There's always a "way around it" if "it" is bad law...In any tradition.

Anyway, I'm not sure I follow you.  If a child's property rights don't have any legal effects until emancipation or majority anyway, why would a legislature ever have to make some kind of distinction about the property rights of an unborn fetus?  How is this a stalemate?  And what is the connection to abortion?

"What is Legal?  What is Illegal?  What is 'Barely Legal'?"  - Ali G

SymphonyOfDreams

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #99 on: April 25, 2006, 09:11:39 AM »
50 years ago an interracial married couple had no legal rights.
There's always a "way around it" if "it" is bad law...In any tradition.

Anyway, I'm not sure I follow you.  If a child's property rights don't have any legal effects until emancipation or majority anyway, why would a legislature ever have to make some kind of distinction about the property rights of an unborn fetus?  How is this a stalemate?  And what is the connection to abortion?

Child's property rights do have legal effects, and in most legislations they come from the moment of conception, though they may not manage their own money before they reach emancipation or majority and their patrimony is appointed to a tutor, the property is still theirs.

The issue here is about a child that has legal rights over his share of a deceased parent's sucesoral mass (or donations of a third party). So by no means this would be considered a "bad law", it serves as a protection for the unborn's possible patrimony not being transfered away to others, just because said child is not born yet.

So the thing is that most legislations (not really sure if it applies in most States of the Union) recognize a right reserved for physical persons to a merely concieved child, wich brings up the question that if the legislators consider conception a reception of legal rights over patrimony reserved only for actual physical persons, then why not civil rights? not to mention the implications that such thing will have in a premature termination of pregnancy...

To answer more directly your question, when a transfer of property is done, being the child creditor of that money, it IS his money, even though he may not have rights of use and/or exploitation of such patrimony and such responsability falls in the hands of his tutor, the property is his. That's how you can explain that "magical" transfer of the rights of use and exploitation when he reaches majority or emancipation, the "property" rights were with the child from the get go, but the "use" rights only became effective at the moment of majority.