Utilitarianism – Part 2


A reading for my class, “Justice“, discusses the moral choices we are faced with every day, and in rare situations.

Utilitarianism is the second chapter of the book, Justice (above). As the title suggests, the arguments for and against Utilitarianism are addressed. Ancient Romans and modern Manhattan are used as examples.

The idea of a numerical value being applied to happiness is also explored. A smoking study gone wrong, the Ford Pinto,  and an EPA report on air pollution all attempt to calculate the value of a human life – ranging from $200,000 to $6 million. What dollar amount would you apply to your life?

(As a side note, the military calculates life at $450,000 – the total amount of their full life insurance coverage. Is this accurate?)

To read Utilitarianism for yourself, click here. It’s in PDF, so you can download it and read a little at a time. I’ll wait. Or you can purchase the entire book, Justice, by clicking here. I also welcome you to post your thoughts below so we can discuss this further!

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