Ethical Egoism Essay

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Chris Caicedo Prof Makinster Moral Issues 144 2 April 2013 Ethical Egoism Ethical Egoism is the theory that to be morally right one should do what is in the best interest of one's self. We have no obligation to anyone but ourselves. According to this always take yourself into consideration when making decisions. Although the society is important, you should be happy first before you worry about the people around you. A position against this is, your pleasure may cause others pain (not only physical). What you might do to push yourself into a higher level of happiness and pleasure may cause someone else s downfall. If one believes it is in the self interest of themselves to hurt someone else before you get hurt, it could be considered moral. Psychological Egoism says that humans are already programmed to act and think like ethical egoism. We are born and raised to look out for ourselves and are built to make choices that are in our self interest. Ethical Egoism adds the choice of self interest into the mix while Psychological doesn't supply another alternative. In the end they both believe choices are based on your individual greater good, the difference is the truth of where the roots of this theory started. The is-ought problem is that the world is full of “is”, or facts in the world. The “is” are universal truths that are the general overall consensus. Examples of this are “the sky is blue” “the ocean is blue” and “baseballs are round”. The “ought” is what should be. For example, smoking cigarettes increases your chance of developing lung cancer”. So, “You ought to not smoke”. The “is” gives you facts in which you may or may not use to make a decision. The ought gives you a series of facts and observations and makes a final decision by connecting them. The is-out problem is like the ethical / psychological egoisms in terms of options given.

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