Utilitarianism as an ethical theory Utilitarianism is the view that an act is right if it equals the greatest happiness for the greatest number of people. Utilitarians describe moral actions as actions that boost something good and lessen something that is bad. Virtue, knowledge, and goodwill are all good but they are only good if they give people a pleasurable existence. Pain is the only thing that is intrinsically bad. Utilitarians focus on the result of an act instead of the inherent nature of the act. An example would be an individual throwing their garbage into the ocean. Utilitarians would say throwing garbage into the ocean is not necessarily bad, but the effect it leaves will cause harm sooner or later and that is what is bad. I do not think that utilitarianism can be an ethical theory. It is simply too difficult to determine whether the utilitarian theory can be justified. The dilemma of trying to focus on a positive outcome or focusing on the actions that we take in order to accomplish the greatest good is too hard to measure. Utilitarianism is a type of consequentialist theory. The consequentialist theory says moral rightness is determined solely by the consequence of your action. If an act maximizes the good then it is good. A utilitarian will support the decision of an action that will produce the greatest amount of happiness for the greatest number of people. However, this is misguided in principle. For example, say a terrorist has ten hostages he is going to execute. He says to you if you kill one hostage he will let the other nine go. What should you do? You could make the argument that killing an innocent man is wrong, but you could also argue that you are bringing more happiness because you are only killing one person. If you kill nobody though you have sentenced ten people to die so it is a double edged sword. Another example is a murderer in a small town. The sheriff of the town is hard-pressed to find whoever the
ethical theory. For a discussion of John Stuart Mill's essay Utilitarianism (1861), see Utilitarianism (book).
The Utilitarianism series,
part of the Politics series
John Stuart Mill
“In the end utilitarianism is simply a moral justification for individual/group selfishness”
Utilitarianism is a theory in which the quote by Jeremy Bentham applies “The greatest happiness to the greatest amount of people” which means that the best action is the one in which the most pleasure is given to the majority of people. The majority always wins rather than the minority and pleasure is the sole good whereas pain is the sole evil.
On one hand this is classed as selfless as using utilitarianism….
Classical Utilitarianism is a moral philosophy, which was developed in 19th century England by Jeremy Bentham, John Stuart Mill and Henry Sidgwick. The essential feature a utilitarian reside in, is the notion that an action is right if it produces the most amount of happiness well limiting suffering. Utilitarianism focuses solely on the consequences of the action, in an attempt to bring about the most happiness from each situation, well ensuring everybody’s happiness is equally….
Utilitarianists are often persecuted for holding a morality in which the end always justifies the means, no matter how repulsive it may be to intuitional moral standards. Hare attempts to quiet controversy by combining act and rule utilitarianism in daily life in such a way that internal moral standards are satisfied and overall good is promoted. Kymlicka stays firm in his opposition to Hare’s theories and shuns the idea of consequentialism having intrinsic value greater than that of intuitive moral….
Utilitarianism the ethical doctrine of the greatest happiness of the greatest number should be the criterion of the virtue of action. The principle that utilitarianism use in making moral decisions is a form of moral hedonism; that people should seek pleasure and avoid pain. Utilitarianism seeks to produce the greatest good for the greatest number. But, the problem is in determining what the greatest good is. Utilitarian define the “good” as good is what equates pleasure and reduces….
Utilitarianism is a moral theory generally considered to have been founded by Jeremy Bentham, a 19th century English philosopher and social reformer. It is centered on the concept of happiness, and those who seek it. The idea is that all people seek happiness, and that it is the ultimate goal of all human beings to be happy. Therefore, according to classical utilitarianism, when a person wishes to act in an ethically sound manner he or she should strive to bring about the greatest….
Utilitarianism is a philosophical theory that believes that right thing to do comes from a measurement of the amount of pleasure over the amount of pain, and decides that the right thing to do results in what will be the greatest pleasure for the majority of the group. In other words by calculating happiness you will be able to decide what the right thing to do is as long as it is right for the majority of the people. This seems as if it will only help the people that agree on the….
theory of Utilitarianism
The theory of Utilitarianism takes its name from the Latin word Utilis, meaning ‘useful’. It was first developed by Jeremy Bentham, a philosopher and legal theorist of the 18th century. Bentham sought to produce a modern and rational approach to morality which would suit the changing society of the industrial age. This was also the era of the French and American Revolutions, and of the Enlightenment, so orthodox morality was challenged on many fronts. Utilitarianism may be….
Utilitarianism, by John Stuart Mill, is an essay written to provide support for the value of utilitarianism as a moral theory, and to respond to misconceptions about it. Mill defines utilitarianism as a theory based on the principle that "actions are right in proportion as they tend to promote happiness, wrong as they tend to produce the reverse of happiness." Mill defines happiness as pleasure and the absence of pain. He argues that pleasure can differ in quality and quantity, and that pleasures….
Utilitarianism and Business Ethics
Utilitarianism is a normative, consequentialist, empirical philosophy which links the idea of a good action to one which promotes maximum pleasure or happiness, found by adding up costs and benefits (or pains and pleasures). It has two classic formulations - Bentham's hedonistic (pleasure-based) act utilitarianism and Mill's eudaimonistic (happiness-based) rule utilitarianism. In this article we make some preliminary comments on Bentham and Mill before analysing….