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CHARACTERISTICS of Moral Theories 1. STABILITY: constant, consistent • decisions not made on whim or caprice. 2. UNIVERSALITY: Principles or practices applied fairly/equally [same playing field ] • not different rules for different people in the same situation. 3. IMPARTIALITY: avoid inclinations/each person counts for one • showing favoritism for a friend or yourself. 4. OBJECTIVITY: Make decisions on a verifiable basis, apart from inclinations/emotions • decisions made on non-verifiable basis, or according to personal preference. 5. [Compassion?] How do our philosophers provide for STABILITY 1. Hobbes: the contract is irrevocable/absolute ruler. 2. Utilitarianism: decide on the basic of publicly verifiable consequences – may lack stability because nothing is absolutely wrong How do our philosophers provide for UNIVERSALITY 1. Hobbes: all men agree to the covenant made. 2. Utilitarianism: be sure to consider the consequences for all those affected by an action How do our philosophers provide for IMPARTIALITY 1. Hobbes: the covenant applies to everyone in society -- no “opt-outs” 2. Utilitarianism: consider the consequences for all affected by an action, your interests count for only one in that calculation How do our philosophers provide for OBJECTIVITY 1. Hobbes: individual morality is relative to our desires & aversions, thus we need the covenant and the absolute ruler to override that. 2. Bentham: consequences are publicly verifiable. How do our philosophers provide for COMPASSION 1. Hobbes: nope! 2. Utilitarianism: • Bentham believed that the nature of the • • human person can be adequately described without mention of social relationships. Mill believed that we have sympathy for others and that our happiness depends on the well-being of others. What does Nielsen believe?