Category Archives: Uncategorized

You don’t know yourself

People don’t always know what they believe. Lots of people think they believe that everyone has a right to believe whatever they want to believe. They are committed to believing that the police have a right to believe them guilty … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Moral Superiority of the Modern World

We know that different societies have different moral codes.  Is there any reason to think that the moral codes of modern, educated, industrialized societies are better than more traditional ones? Of course, it is impossible to use moral codes themselves … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Blanket Strong Agnosticism

Blanket strong agnosticism is the view that it is impossible to know whether or not there are any supernatural beings. Since it is impossible to observe supernatural beings directly, we can only infer their existence as the best explanation for … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Irrationality of Rationalists

There are philosophers who maintain that morality is a function of, or reducible to, rationality. It is impossible that they could be right.  Natural selection would eliminate individuals who were “rational” to the extent that being “rational” differed from believing … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Something We Can Be Sure of

We apply morality in specific situations. In order to apply it correctly, we must be aware of all the relevant materials facts. For instance, if morality requires us to engage only in the kind of sexual activity that is most … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Limited Scope of Hume’s Law

I maintain that ethics ought to be a sub-field of evolutionary biology.   My stance may lead people to surmise that I run afoul of the fact/value distinction. I don’t. There can be natural selection for beliefs. It is a simple … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Irrationality of Relativism

Some maintain that moral judgments are nothing more than the opinion of the judge. The evidence for this is the fact that people make incompatible moral judgments. The observable variation in moral opinion is not the only relevant evidence.  It … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Duty to Shut Up

Psychologists once conducted the following experiment.  Small children were left in a room with toys, one of which was particularly attractive.  Some were told that they would be punished if they played with the attractive toy.  Others were told that … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Religious ethics

Religious ethical theories are no improvement on secular ones. Followers of St. Thomas Aquinas argue, for instance, that human beings are essentially reproductive and that therefore homosexuality is wrong.  But if human beings are essentially reproductive and homosexuals are not, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Supervenience and Procrustean Tendencies

There is no legal difference between two states of affairs without a difference in the material facts. There is no moral difference between two states of affairs without a difference in the material facts. Both of these statements appear to … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment