Utilitarianism Essay

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One of the major players in ethical theories has long been the concept of utilitarianism. Utilitarianism states that in general the ethical rightness or wrongness of an action is directly related to the utility of that action.”Such theories suppose that the only thing that has non derivatives value is the welfare or happiness of sentient being. “(pg. 450) There are two types of Utilitarianism; these are “act” and “rule”. An act utilitarian uses thought processes associated with utilitarianism (i.e. the principle of utility) to make all decisions, this requires a lot of thought and careful calculation. Contrary to an act utilitarian, a rule utilitarian uses the principles of utility to create a set of rules by which they live. Rule utilitarians are not incapable of calculating a decision; they just do not see a need to do it all the time. Utility is more specifically defined as a measure of the goodness or badness of the consequences of an action.” …Utility, or the Greatest happiness principle, holds that actions are right in proportion as they tend to produce the the reverse happiness. By happiness is intended, pleasure, and the absence of pain; by unhappiness, pain, and the privation of pleasure.” (pg.461) For Mill it was not so much about the quantity but the quality of pleasure. “It would be absurd that while, in estimating all other things, quality is considered as well as quantity, the estimation of pleasure should be supposed to depend on quantity alone”(pg.462) Mill argues that happiness is the sole basis of morality, and that people never desire anything but happiness. He supports this claim by showing that all the other objects of people's desire are either means to happiness, or included in the definition of happine... ... middle of paper ... ...eater quality of pleasure. Kant’s deontological view would make the argument that ,it is the duty of the person listening to music to give credit to the person who created it, if you do not give credit to the creator you are consciously taking work from someone, therefore taking something that you didn't create and taking joy from it is not ok. Kant has several general principles about moral duties may be advanced, that can relate to the situation at hand.First, actions are moral if and only if they are undertaken for the sake of morality alone (without any ulterior motive). Second, the moral quality of an action is judged not according to the action's consequences, but according to the motive that produced it. Third, actions are moral if and only if they are undertaken out of respect for the moral law (as opposed to some other motivation such as a need or desire).

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