We live in a world of crowds and corporations, artworks and artifacts, legislatures and languages, money and markets. These are all social objects — they are made, at least in part, by people and by communities. But what exactly are these things? How are they made, and what is the role of people in making them? In The Ant Trap, Brian Epstein rewrites our understanding of the nature of the social world and the foundations of the social sciences. Epstein explains (...) and challenges the three prevailing traditions about how the social world is made. One tradition takes the social world to be built out of people, much as traffic is built out of cars. A second tradition also takes people to be the building blocks of the social world, but focuses on thoughts and attitudes we have toward one another. And a third tradition takes the social world to be a collective projection onto the physical world. Epstein shows that these share critical flaws. Most fundamentally, all three traditions overestimate the role of people in building the social world: they are overly anthropocentric. Epstein starts from scratch, bringing the resources of contemporary metaphysics to bear. In the place of traditional theories, he introduces a model based on a new distinction between the grounds and the anchors of social facts. Epstein illustrates the model with a study of the nature of law, and shows how to interpret the prevailing traditions about the social world. Then he turns to social groups, and to what it means for a group to take an action or have an intention. Contrary to the overwhelming consensus, these often depend on more than the actions and intentions of group members. (shrink)
According to contractualist theories in ethics, whether an action is wrong is determined by whether it could be justified to others on grounds no one could reasonably reject. Contractualists then think that reasonable rejectability of principles depends on the strength of the personal objections individuals can make to them. There is, however, a deep disagreement between contractualists concerning from which temporal perspective the relevant objections to different principles are to be made. Are they to be made on the basis of (...) the prospects the principles give to different individuals ex ante or on the basis of the outcomes of the principles ex post? Both answers have been found to be problematic. The ex ante views make irrelevant information about personal identity morally significant and lead to objectionable ex ante rules, whereas ex post views lead to counterintuitive results in the so-called different harm and social risk imposition cases. The aim of this article is to provide a new synthesis of these views that can avoid the problems of the previous alternatives. I call the proposal ‘risk-acknowledging’ ex post contractualism. The crux of the view is to take into account in the comparisons of different objections both the realized harms and the risks under which individuals have to live. (shrink)
The Polish logician Roman Suszko has extensively pleaded in the 1970s for a restatement of the notion of many-valuedness. According to him, as he would often repeat, “there are but two logical values, true and false.” As a matter of fact, a result by W´ojcicki-Lindenbaum shows that any tarskian logic has a many-valued semantics, and results by Suszko-da Costa-Scott show that any many-valued semantics can be reduced to a two-valued one. So, why should one even consider using logics with more (...) than two values? Because, we argue, one has to decide how to deal with bivalence and settle down the tradeoff between logical 2-valuedness and truth-functionality, from a pragmatical standpoint. -/- This paper will illustrate the ups and downs of a two-valued reduction of logic. Suszko’s reductive result is quite non-constructive.We will exhibit here a way of effectively constructing the two-valued semantics of any logic that has a truth-functional finite-valued semantics and a sufficiently expressive language. From there, as we will indicate, one can easily go on to provide those logics with adequate canonical systems of sequents or tableaux. The algorithmic methods developed here can be generalized so as to apply to many non-finitely valued logics as well —or at least to those that admit of computable quasi tabular two-valued semantics, the so-called dyadic semantics. (shrink)
The standard notion of formal theory, in logic, is in general biased exclusively towards assertion: it commonly refers only to collections of assertions that any agent who accepts the generating axioms of the theory should also be committed to accept. In reviewing the main abstract approaches to the study of logical consequence, we point out why this notion of theory is unsatisfactory at multiple levels, and introduce a novel notion of theory that attacks the shortcomings of the received notion by (...) allowing one to take both assertions and denials on a par. This novel notion of theory is based on a bilateralist approach to consequence operators, which we hereby introduce, and whose main properties we investigate in the present paper. (shrink)
Fibring has been shown to be useful for combining logics endowed withtruth-functional semantics. However, the techniques used so far are unableto cope with fibring of logics endowed with non-truth-functional semanticsas, for example, paraconsistent logics. The first main contribution of thepaper is the development of a suitable abstract notion of logic, that mayalso encompass systems with non-truth-functional connectives, and wherefibring can still be dealt with. Furthermore, it is shown that thisextended notion of fibring preserves completeness under certain reasonableconditions. This completeness transfer (...) result, the second main contributionof the paper, generalizes the one established in Zanardo et al. (2001) butis obtained using new techniques that explore the properties of a suitablemeta-logic (conditional equational logic) where the (possibly)non-truth-functional valuations are specified. The modal paraconsistentlogic of da Costa and Carnielli (1988) is studied in the context of this novel notionof fibring and its completeness is so established. (shrink)
We introduce and study a new approach to the theory of abstract algebraic logic (AAL) that explores the use of many-sorted behavioral logic in the role traditionally played by unsorted equational logic. Our aim is to extend the range of applicability of AAL toward providing a meaningful algebraic counterpart also to logics with a many-sorted language, and possibly including non-truth-functional connectives. The proposed behavioral approach covers logics which are not algebraizable according to the standard approach, while also bringing a new (...) algebraic perspective to logics which are algebraizable using the standard tools of AAL. Furthermore, we pave the way toward a robust behavioral theory of AAL, namely by providing a behavioral version of the Leibniz operator which allows us to generalize the traditional Leibniz hierarchy, as well as several well-known characterization results. A number of meaningful examples will be used to illustrate the novelties and advantages of the approach. (shrink)
We discuss the axiomatization of generalized consequence relations determined by non-deterministic matrices. We show that, under reasonable expressiveness requirements, simple axiomatizations can always be obtained, using inference rules which can have more than one conclusion. Further, when the non-deterministic matrices are finite we obtain finite axiomatizations with a suitable generalized subformula property.
Prioritarianism is a variant of utilitarianism. It differs from utilitarianism in that benefiting individuals matters more the worse off these individuals are. On this view, there are two standard ways of handling risky prospects: Ex-Post Prioritarianism adjusts for prioritizing the worse off in final outcomes and then values prospects by the expectation of the sum total of those adjusted values, whereas Ex-Ante Prioritarianism adjusts for prioritizing the worse off on each individual's expectation and then values prospects by the sum total (...) of those adjusted expectations. A standard objection to Ex-Post Prioritarianism is that it violates Ex-Ante Pareto, that is, it prescribes choices that worsen the expectations for everyone. In this article, I argue that Ex-Ante Prioritarianism suffers from much the same problem: it violates a sequential version of Ex-Ante Pareto, that is, it prescribes sequences of choices that worsen the expectations for everyone. (shrink)
. The semantic collapse problem is perhaps the main difficulty associated to the very powerful mechanism for combining logics known as fibring. In this paper we propose cryptofibred semantics as a generalization of fibred semantics, and show that it provides a solution to the collapsing problem. In particular, given that the collapsing problem is a special case of failure of conservativeness, we formulate and prove a sufficient condition for cryptofibring to yield a conservative extension of the logics being combined. For (...) illustration, we revisit the example of combining intuitionistic and classical propositional logics. (shrink)
Motivated by applications in software engineering, we propose two forms of combination of logics: synchronization on formulae and synchronization on models. We start by reviewing satisfaction systems, consequence systems, one-step derivation systems and theory spaces, as well as their functorial relationships. We define the synchronization on formulae of two consequence systems and provide a categorial characterization of the construction. For illustration we consider the synchronization of linear temporal logic and equational logic. We define the synchronization on models of two satisfaction (...) systems and provide a categorial characterization of the construction. We illustrate the technique in two cases: linear temporal logic versus equational logic; and linear temporal logic versus branching temporal logic. Finally, we lift the synchronization on formulae to the category of logics over consequences systems. (shrink)
The appearance of consciousness in the universe remains one of the major mysteries unsolved by science or philosophy. Absent an agreed-upon definition of consciousness or even a convenient system to test theories of consciousness, a confusing heterogeneity of theories proliferate. In pursuit of clarifying this complicated discourse, we here interpret various frameworks for the scientific and philosophical study of consciousness through the lens of social insect evolutionary biology. To do so, we first discuss the notion of a forward test versus (...) a reverse test, analogous to the normal and revolutionary phases of the scientific process. Contemporary theories of consciousness are forward tests for consciousness, in that they strive to become a means to classify the level of consciousness of arbitrary states and systems. Yet no such theory of consciousness has earned sufficient confidence such that it might be actually used as a forward test in ambiguous settings. What is needed now is thus a legitimate reverse test for theories of consciousness, to provide internal and external calibration of different frameworks. A reverse test for consciousness would ideally look like a method for referencing theories of consciousness to a tractable model system. We introduce the Ant Colony Test as a rigorous reverse test for consciousness. We show that social insect colonies, though disaggregated collectives, fulfill many of the prerequisites for conscious awareness met by humans and honey bee workers. A long lineage of philosophically-neutral neurobehavioral, evolutionary, and ecological studies on social insect colonies can thus be redeployed for the study of consciousness in general. We suggest that the ACT can provide insight into the nature of consciousness, and highlight the ant colony as a model system for ethically performing clarifying experiments about consciousness. (shrink)
Tim Räz has presented what he takes to be a new objection to Stewart Shapiro's ante rem structuralism. Räz claims that ARS conflicts with mathematical practice. I will explain why this is similar to an old problem, posed originally by John Burgess in 1999 and Jukka Keränen in 2001, and show that Shapiro can use the solution to the original problem in Räz's case. Additionally, I will suggest that Räz's proposed treatment of the situation does not provide an argument for (...) the in re over the ante rem approach. (shrink)
The modern view of logical reasoning as modeled by a consequence operator has allowed for huge developments in the study of logic as an abstract discipline. Still, it is unable to explain why it is often the case that the same designation is used, in an ambiguous way, to describe several distinct modes of reasoning over the same logical language. A paradigmatic example of such a situation is ‘modal logic’, a terminology which can encompass reasoning over Kripke frames, but also (...) over Kripke models, and in any case either locally or globally . Herein, we adopt a novel abstract notion of logic presented as a lattice-structured hierarchy of consequence operators, and explore some common proof-theoretic and model-theoretic ways of presenting such hierarchies through a collection of meaningful examples. In order to illustrate the usefulness of the notion of hierarchical consequence operators we address a few questions in the theory of combined logics, where a suitable abstract presentation of the logics being combined is absolutely essential. We show how to define the operation, in general, and we achieve a number of interesting preservation results for fibring within the context of 2-hierarchies. (shrink)
Ante rem structuralism is the doctnne that mathematics descubes a realm of abstract (structural) universab. According to its proponents, appeal to the exutence of these universab provides a source distinctive insight into the epistemology of mathematics, in particular insight into the so-called 'access problem' of explaining how mathematicians can reliably access truths about an abstract realm to which they cannot travel andfiom which they recave no signab. Stewart Shapiro offers the most developed version of this view to date. Through an (...) examination of Shapiro's proposed structuralist epistemology for mathematics I argue that ante rem structuralism faib to provide the ingredients for a satisfactory resolution of the access problem for infinite structures (whether small or large). (shrink)
The education of students and professionals in business ethics is an increasingly important goal on the agenda of business schools and corporations. The present study provides a meta-analysis of 25 previously conducted business ethics instructional programs. The role of criteria, study design, participant characteristics, quality of instruction, instructional content, instructional program characteristics, and characteristics of instructional methods as moderators of the effectiveness of business ethics instruction were examined. Overall, results indicate that business ethics instructional programs have a minimal␣impact on increasing (...) outcomes related to ethical perceptions, behavior, or awareness. However, specific criteria, content, and methodological moderators of effectiveness shed light on potential recommendations for␣improving business ethics instruction. Implications for␣future research and practice in business ethics are discussed. (shrink)
It is well-known that da Costa's C-systems of paraconsistent logic do not admit a Blok-Pigozzi algebraization. Still, an algebraic flavored semantics for them has been proposed in the literature, namely using the class of so-called da Costa algebras. However, the precise connection between these semantic structures and the C-systems was never established at the light of the theory of algebraizable logics. In this paper we propose to study the C-systems from an algebraic point of view, and to fill in this (...) gap by using the tools and techniques of the newly developed behavioral approach to abstract algebraic logic. As a by-product of the approach, we also rediscover the bivaluation semantics of the logics. (shrink)
ABSTRACT:We explore the impact on employee attitudes of their perceptions of how others outside the organization are treated above and beyond the impact of how employees are directly treated by the organization. Results of a study of 827 employees in eighteen organizations show that employee perceptions of corporate social responsibility are positively related to organizational commitment with the relationship being partially mediated by work meaningfulness and perceived organizational support and job satisfaction with work meaningfulness partially mediating the relationship but not (...) POS. Moreover, in order to address limited micro-level research in CSR, we develop a measure of employee perceptions of CSR through four pilot studies. Employing a bifactor model, we find that social responsibility has an additional effect on employee attitudes beyond environmental responsibility, which we posit is due to the relational component of social responsibility. (shrink)
Some authors have claimed that ante rem structuralism has problems with structures that have indiscernible places. In response, I argue that there is no requirement that mathematical objects be individuated in a non-trivial way. Metaphysical principles and intuitions to the contrary do not stand up to ordinary mathematical practice, which presupposes an identity relation that, in a sense, cannot be defined. In complex analysis, the two square roots of –1 are indiscernible: anything true of one of them is true of (...) the other. I suggest that i functions like a parameter in natural deduction systems. I gave an early version of this paper at a workshop on structuralism in mathematics and science, held in the Autumn of 2006, at Bristol University. Thanks to the organizers, particularly Hannes Leitgeb, James Ladyman, and Øystein Linnebo, to my commentator Richard Pettigrew, and to the audience there. The paper also benefited considerably from a preliminary session at the Arché Research Centre at the University of St Andrews. I am indebted to my colleagues Craige Roberts, for help with the linguistics literature, and Ben Caplan and Gabriel Uzquiano, for help with the metaphysics. Thanks also to Hannes Leitgeb and Jeffrey Ketland for reading an earlier version of the manuscript and making helpful suggestions. I also benefited from conversations with Richard Heck, John Mayberry, Kevin Scharp, and Jason Stanley. CiteULike Connotea Del.icio.us What's this? (shrink)
Successfully navigating the norms of a society is a complex task that involves recognizing diverse kinds of rules as well as the relative weight attached to them. In the United States, different kinds of rules—federal statutes and regulations, scientific norms, and professional ideals—guide the work of researchers. Penalties for violating these different kinds of rules and norms can range from the displeasure of peers to criminal sanctions. We proposed that it would be more difficult for researchers working in the U.S. (...) who were born in other nations to distinguish the seriousness of violating rules across diverse domains. We administered a new measure, the evaluating rules in science task, to National Institutes of Health-funded investigators. The ERST assessed perceptions of the seriousness of violating research regulations, norms, and ideals, and allowed us to calculate the degree to which researchers distinguished between the seriousness of each rule category. The ERST also assessed researchers’ predictions of the seriousness that research integrity officers would assign to the rules. We compared researchers’ predictions to the seriousness ratings of 112 RIOs working at U.S. research-intensive universities. U.S.-born researchers were significantly better at distinguishing between the seriousness of violating federal research regulations and violating ideals of science, and they were more accurate in their predictions of the views of RIOs. Acculturation to the U.S. moderated the effects of nationality on accuracy. We discuss the implications of these findings in terms of future research and education. (shrink)
Drawing on social identity theory and organizational identification theory, we develop a model of the impact of perceived corporate social responsibility on employees’ organizational identification. We argue that employees’ perceptions of their company’s social responsibility behaviors are more important than organizational reality in determining organizational identification. After defining perceived corporate social responsibility (PCSR), we postulate how PCSR affects organizational identification when perception and reality are aligned or misaligned. Implications for organizational practice and further research are discussed.
We present an extension of the mosaic method aimed at capturing many-dimensional modal logics. As a proof-of-concept, we define the method for logics arising from the combination of linear tense operators with an “orthogonal” S5-like modality. We show that the existence of a model for a given set of formulas is equivalent to the existence of a suitable set of partial models, called mosaics, and apply the technique not only in obtaining a proof of decidability and a proof of completeness (...) for the corresponding Hilbert-style axiomatization, but also in the development of a mosaic-based tableau system. We further consider extensions for dealing with the case when interactions between the two dimensions exist, thus covering a wide class of bundled Ockhamist branching-time logics, and present for them some partial results, such as a non-analytic version of the tableau system. (shrink)
It is difficult to understand questions about the evolution of ants. It seems often to be assumed that there are specific features that ants possess because of the "survival value" of such features. This makes very little sense, because it is very hard to believe that there are any features at all that can be viewed as having survival value for ants.
We study the general problem of strengthening the logic of a given matrix with a set of axioms, using the idea of rexpansion. We obtain two characterization methods: a very general but not very effective one, and then an effective method which only applies under certain restrictions on the given semantics and the shape of the axioms. We show that this second method covers a myriad of examples in the literature. Finally, we illustrate how to obtain analytic multiple-conclusion calculi for (...) the resulting logics. (shrink)
The Fregean-inspired Principle of Compositionality of Meaning for formal languages asserts that the meaning of a compound expression is analysable in terms of the meaning of its constituents, taking into account the mode in which these constituents are combined so as to form the compound expression. From a logical point of view, this amounts to prescribing a constraint—that may or may not be respected—on the internal mechanisms that build and give meaning to a given formal system. Within the domain of (...) formal semantics and of the structure of logical derivations, the PoC is often directly reflected by metaproperties such as truth-functionality and analyticity, characteristic of computationally well-behaved logical systems. (shrink)
We define and study abstract valuation semantics for logics, an algebraically well-behaved version of valuation semantics. Then, in the context of the behavioral approach to the algebraization of logics, we show, by means of meaningful bridge theorems and application examples, that abstract valuations are suited to play a role similar to the one played by logical matrices in the traditional approach to algebraization.
In previous work, we introduced a version of distributed temporal logic that is well-suited both for verifying security protocols and as a metalogic for reasoning about, and relating, different security protocol models. In this paper, we formally investigate the relationship between our approach and strand spaces, which is one of the most successful and widespread formalisms for analyzing security protocols. We define translations between models in our logic and strand-space models of security protocols, and we compare the results obtained with (...) respect to the level of abstraction that is inherent in each of the formalisms. This allows us to clarify different aspects of strand spaces that are often left implicit, as well as pave the way to transfer results, techniques and tools across the two approaches. (shrink)
Ex ante contractualism holds that in situations involving risk we ought to act in accordance with principles that license the action that satisfies the strongest individual claim, where those claims are a function of the expected value that a given policy gives each person ex ante. I here challenge ex ante contractualism on contractualist grounds. I argue that adopting ex ante contractualism would have far reaching implications that contractualists, or many nonconsequentialist in general, would find very hard to accept. I (...) conclude that to block these implications, contractualists should adopt an ex post approach to deal with decisions under risk. (shrink)
This chapter discusses desire theory and how the temporal gap between desires and the states of affairs that satisfy them affects this theory. Satisfaction is not that important in desire theory because even if getting what we want fails to satisfy, we are better off for having got it. The rationale for rejecting hedonistic accounts of well-being in favor of desire theories is the intuition that states of affairs that are not “like” anything for us can harm and benefit us. (...) Sumner, however, suggests that even if we grant the desire theorist’s fundamental assumption that they can make a difference to our well-being, the prospective character of desire, which opens a temporal gap between desires and the states of affairs that satisfy them, undermines the account. (shrink)
This paper is part of an attempt to clarify the relationship between explanatory reasons and justificatory reasons for actions of various kinds. It draws on a distinction between two notions of rationalization, viz., ex ante and ex post rationalization, to recast the akratic case on the one hand and to explicate an adequate sense in which an explanatory but non-justificatory reason for an action rationalizes the latter on the other hand. The explication is helped by analysis of a hypothetical example, (...) and the name "quasi-rational" is legitimated for the type of actions this example represents. Last, but not least, the paper demonstrates that an implication of the argument is the falsity of one well-known principle in Davidson's action theory, i.e., the principle claiming that the (primary) reason for an action is also its cause. (shrink)
This study examined the role of reflection on personal cases for making ethical decisions with regard to new ethical problems. Participants assumed the position of a business manager in a hypothetical organization and solved ethical problems that might be encountered. Prior to making a decision for the business problems, participants reflected on a relevant ethical experience. The findings revealed that application of material garnered from reflection on a personal experience was associated with decisions of higher ethicality. However, whether the case (...) was viewed as positive or negative, and whether the outcomes, processes, or outcomes and processes embedded in the experience were examined, influenced the application of case material to the new problem. As expected, examining positive experiences and the processes involved in those positive experiences resulted in greater application of case material to new problems. Future directions and implications for understanding ethical decision making are discussed. (shrink)
The altered nuclear transfer-oocyte assisted reprogramming (ANT-OAR) proposal has serious scientific and philosophical flaws, and it is not a morally acceptable means of obtaining embryonic stem cells. Note that this is the final preprint of an article that was published in the newspaper Science and Theology News in June 2006.
Supported by a qualitative study of triple bottom line firms—those that simultaneously prioritize economic, social, and environmental objectives—we investigated the market logic and practices of TBL firms to better understand how they fulfill their mission and achieve their goals. We explored if and how TBL firms may differ in their approach to stakeholders and the management of their resources, including dynamic capabilities. We employed a research design that emphasizes the iterative comparison of narrative data within themselves and with scholarly literature (...) [i.e., resource-based view ] to develop new theoretical insights. Because the RBV is commonly used to theorize how firms achieve competitive advantage, we explored whether TBL firms achieve competitive advantage differently from what RBV theory would predict. Our data suggest that how a firm defines value has a significant influence on the capabilities it creates and how it treats its resources. We find that TBL firms redefine value to not only focus on the end product or service but also to include the systemic cost of delivering goods. As a result, TBL firms differ from prevailing scholarly thought in RBV. They strive to have resources that are sustainable and therefore imitable, commonly found, and substitutable. Moreover, they are not only transparent in their processes but also collaborate with others in the value chain and in their sector. In doing so, they deliberately create new markets from which other firms can benefit. Rather than focusing on competitive advantage, they focus on collaborative advantage. (shrink)
El artículo, que supone una determinada interpretación de la filosofía de la religión de Zubiri, intenta reconstruir el hipotético diálogo de ella con la filosofía analítica de la religión. así, primeramente, expone las varias coincidencias de ambas en torno a la cuestión del significado del lenguaje religioso. Enseguida, muestra tanto sus acuerdos como sus divergencias en lo que toca a la racionalidad de las creencias religiosas. Y dentro de esto último, por fin, sugiere que para las dos la teología filosófica (...) y la teodicea constituyen un terreno imprescindible para cualquier filosofía de la religión que pretenda ser rigurosa y actual. (shrink)
Ovaj rad usmjeren je na proučavanje prijateljskih odnosa unutar razrednog odjela. Odnosi među vršnjacima izuzetno su važni u školskom razdoblju, a nedostatak ili trajne teškoće u prijateljskim odnosima mogu se reflektirati na uspjeh učenika, usvajanje nastavnih sadržaja, sliku učenika o sebi, socijalni status i socijalni uspjeh itd. Cilj empirijskog dijela rada je ispitati kvalitetu prijateljskih odnosa unutar razrednog odjela u kategoriji ‘najbolji prijatelj’. Iz cilja istraživanja proizašla su tri istraživačka pitanja: Kakav je profil prijateljskih odnosa u kategoriji ‘najbolji prijatelj’? Kako (...) izgleda hijerarhijska struktura dimenzija kvalitete prijateljstva u ponuđenim kategorijama? Koje karakteristike opisuju najboljeg prijatelja i idealnog prijatelja? Rezultati istraživanja utvrđuju dva profila: opći te profil blizine i roditeljske uključenosti. Utvrđivanje hijerarhijske strukture ukazalo je na važnost brige i priznanja te pouzdanosti i rješavanja problema. Vrh hijerarhijske ljestvice zauzimaju dimenzije priznanja i pouzdanosti. Kao najznačajnije karakteristike koje opisuju najboljeg prijatelja ističu se razgovor i zajedničko provođenje vremena, povjeravanje i pomoć, a u idealnom prijateljstvu izdvajaju se moralne vrijednosti prijatelja. This paper focuses on studying friend relationships in the classroom. Relationships between peers are exceptionally important in school age, and a lack of such relationships or continued difficulties with them can reflect on student successes, learning outcomes, and student perceptions of self, social status, social success, etc. The goal of the empirical part of the research was to examine the quality of friend relationships within the classroom in the category of ‘best friend’. Three research questions arose from the research goal: What is the profile of friend relationships in the category of ‘best friend’? What is the hierarchical structure of the quality dimensions of friendship in the categories offered? Which characteristics describe one’s best friend and the ideal friend? The results of research affirm two profiles – a general one, and the profile of closeness and parental involvement. The affirmation of hierarchical structure pointed to the importance of care and recognition and reliability and problem solving. The highest point in the hierarchy is held by the dimensions of recognition and reliability. The most significant characteristics that describe one’s best friend include conversation and spending time together, trust and aid; the moral values of the friend are exemplified in an ideal friendship. (shrink)
The concept of ‘pareto superiority’ plays a central role in ethics, economics, and law. Pareto superiority is sometimes taken as a relation between outcomes, and sometimes as a relation between actions—even where the outcomes of the actions are uncertain. Whether one action is classed as pareto superior to another depends on the prospects under the actions for each person concerned. I argue that a person’s prospects can depend on how that person is designated. Without any constraints on acceptable designators, then, (...) the concept of pareto superiority is ill defined and gives inconsistent results. I consider various ways of completing the definition and draw out some surprising implications. (shrink)
Is there life after death? Can we prove the big bang theory? In his engrossing and accessible style, Dr Kerry Spackman uses everyday examples to answer these questions and other diverse issues. the Ant and the Ferrari is a magical tour-de-force that takes on the big questions in life and answers them in Dr Kerry Spackman's easily accessible writing style. this is one of those rare books that will change your beliefs - and in doing so will change your life. (...) tHE ANt AND tHE FERRARI offers readers a clear, navigable path through the big questions that confront us all today. What is the meaning of life? Can we be ethical beings in today's world? Can we know if there is life after death? Is there such a thing as Absolute truth? What caused the Big Bang and why should you care? (shrink)