Book Review: Ethics Without Principles

Book Review: Ethics Without Principles 118 J OURNAL OF M ORAL P HILOSOPHY 3.1 (2006) who have lives worth not living than to add individuals who have lives worth living (but just below v ). Broome seems prepared to accept this conclusion (p. 213), but— to me at least—it seems worse than the standard version of the repugnant conclu- sion, where v =0. After all, the worst-off individuals referred to in the sadistic con- clusion can truly say that they have lives that are much worse for them than zero lives (I would add that their lives are much worse for them than non-existence, but Broome is sceptical with respect to the importance of this claim), whereas the better-off individuals can truly say that they have good lives (lives worth living)— perhaps very good lives, depending on the exact location of v . In the standard version of the repugnant conclusion, on the other hand, the worse-off individuals all have lives worth living and we can see how the goodness of their lives might add up to an outcome that is better than the less populated outcome. (Broome also suggests that the vagueness of the neutral level may render both the repugnant and http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Moral Philosophy Brill

Book Review: Ethics Without Principles

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Publisher
BRILL
Copyright
© 2006 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1740-4681
eISSN
1745-5243
D.O.I.
10.1177/174046810600300116
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

118 J OURNAL OF M ORAL P HILOSOPHY 3.1 (2006) who have lives worth not living than to add individuals who have lives worth living (but just below v ). Broome seems prepared to accept this conclusion (p. 213), but— to me at least—it seems worse than the standard version of the repugnant conclu- sion, where v =0. After all, the worst-off individuals referred to in the sadistic con- clusion can truly say that they have lives that are much worse for them than zero lives (I would add that their lives are much worse for them than non-existence, but Broome is sceptical with respect to the importance of this claim), whereas the better-off individuals can truly say that they have good lives (lives worth living)— perhaps very good lives, depending on the exact location of v . In the standard version of the repugnant conclusion, on the other hand, the worse-off individuals all have lives worth living and we can see how the goodness of their lives might add up to an outcome that is better than the less populated outcome. (Broome also suggests that the vagueness of the neutral level may render both the repugnant and

Journal

Journal of Moral PhilosophyBrill

Published: Jan 1, 2006

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