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Nonconsequentialist Theories

Nonconsequentialist Theories

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Published by Tyrone Brackens

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Published by: Tyrone Brackens on Jun 29, 2013
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02/19/2014

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Nonconsequentialist Theories
In America, the gap between the have and the have-nots seems to be widening.Doesn’t that mean there’s a lot more wealth to go round? Or is it good news for the richbut very bad news for the poor? Filmmaker Alex Gibney depicts an uneasy coexistenceof wealth and poverty along one New York City thoroughfare; in his latest film titled
Park Avenue: Money, Power and the American Dream” 
. 740 Park Avenue is one of themost exclusive addresses in the world, home to some of the richest Americans, the 1%of the 1%. Ten minutes to the north, across the Harlem River, is the other Park Avenue,in the South Bronx. Here, unemployment runs at 19% and half the population need foodstamps. Is their consequences for this imbalance in wealth and are the rules governinginequality moral?Rule Nonconsequentialist is basically described as a theory of morality thatsuggests what is fair is fair; and that you cannot apply morality to the consequences thatensues when on follows the rules (Thiroux, Krasemann.) So, who makes the rules andallows oversight for those to be held accountable? We know that America is acapitalistic society and that the tax codes favor land, business owners, andentrepreneurs. So, my question is why is the social welfare of the low class beingignored; in favor of a game of chess over a cup of coffee. The big theme thatovershadows the consciousness of America is the “American Dream” with a white picketfence tag that gets placed over America’s head.
 
Yes, it is a known fact that you can come from nothing and make it big in America. But, at what point do we consider how the welfare of America is calculated.Brad Hooker a British American philosopher who specializes in moral philosophy
 explains that;
welfare is calculated by counting a benefit or harm to any one individual the same as the same size benefit or harm to any other individual, and then adding all the benefits and harms together to reach an aggregate sum
”. Although, there is muchdebate and dispute over this notion I still believe it to holds much truth. You must alwayscount the cost of an action or rule that is handed down by ranking elite; as in makingsure that the foundation upon which the rule was established gives way to the socialwelfare of others.The theory of morality we can call full rule consequentialism selects rules solelyin terms of the goodness of their consequences and then claims that these rulesdetermine which kinds of acts are morally wrong. George Berkeley was arguably thefirst Rule Consequentialist. He wrote, “
In framing the general laws of nature, it isgranted we must be entirely guided by the public good 
”. We have seen that ruleconsequentialism evaluates rules on the basis of the expected value of their acceptanceby the overwhelming majority. So, how do we move forward as a society and begin tomove these old mindsets off the scene and rebuild a moral society?In the Preamble of the Constitution we are told that one of the reasons the U. S.Constitution was set up was to promote the general welfare of the people. So, whatform of action should be taken to make sure that this preamble gets reestablished; notas a crutch but as a means of teaching others how to maintain their equilibrium
 
throughout life. I would assume that this makes much sense as a moral rule in whichseeks to help the poor; by providing them a platform on which to build their future. The
Divine Command Theory 
states that morality is based not upon the consequences of actions or rules, or upon self interest or other interestedness, but rather upon something“higher” than these mere mundane events of the imperfect human or natural worlds.So, why are we to question the definition of “Act Nonconsequentialist” whichmakes the major assumption that there are no general moral rules or theories at all, butonly particular actions, situations and people about which we cannot generalize. Isthere some supreme higher power that is controlling both sides of the fence? Thedifference between act and rule consequentialist seems to hinge on the fact that theyare not based on consequences; and that a divine authority sets in motion the rules thatare to be. But, today in society this isn’t accepted by the mainstream populace due inpart to the suffering that happens to be taking place all across the world.I am a firm believer that a divine presence is always relevant in the affairs of man; through leading and guiding them to build a more productive society. So, theissues and problems that we face in society today are definitely consequences of our own actions; and not some divine power throwing favors on one and not the other. Inthe Christian world we like to say that “favor isn’t fair”; as a metaphor to not judge whatthe “higher power” does in certain people’s lives. We have to look at the overall pictureand how all things related to one another. In this 21
st
century tectonic shift the poverty of Bangladesh will definitely have consequences in America if we can’t make thedistinction and begin to provide solutions to these issues.

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