Jeremy Bentham's Principle Of Moral And Legislation

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An introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation, by Jeremy Bentham, he writes in this work about the process of decision-making through moral reasoning. According, to Bentham decisions are made on the basis of morality, which actions are right or wrong. For lawmakers, when formulating laws they consider what brings about the most happiness. In this type of governing society, happiness is most valued, and is the driving justification for laws. In this particular work of Bentham’s he explains his Principle of Utility. The Principle of Utility is Bentham’s description of what guides our moral behavior. According to Bentham, nature has put people “under the governance of two sovereign masters, pain and pleasure” (Pg. 33). It is in this natural world where pain and pleasure control the actions of people, “ pain and pleasure govern in all we do, in all we say, in all we think…” Pain and pleasure drive people’s decisions, and this is the basis for Bentham’s Principle of Utility. Principle is the approval and disapproval of a person’s action based on the happiness or unhappiness; said action brings about to the interested party. “By the principle of utility is meant that principle which approves or disapproves of every action whatsoever, according to the tendency which it appears to have to augment or diminish the …show more content…

Anything that makes you feel disapproval is wrong, and vice versa if anything makes you feel approval it is right. The reasoning behind a person approval or disapproval is the same line of reasoning that is used to determine punishment. “ For the same reason it is also meet for punishment: in what proportion it is adverse to utility, or whether it be adverse to utility at all is a matter that makes no difference.” (Pg. 34) This principle leaves people free to choose on how much to punish, or even to punish at

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