Re: Utilitarian Contradiction ?

Michael Lorrey (
Mon, 25 May 1998 10:35:38 -0400

Daniel Fabulich wrote:

> On Sun, 24 May 1998, Michael Lorrey wrote:
> > Ian Goddard wrote:
> > > IAN: If we say there is "no possible way to construe
> > > utilitarianism as a 'me first' principle," we say
> > > the sets of "me first" (M) and utilitarianism (U)
> > > are disjoint, such that the intersection (^) of
> > > M and U is the null set(/), ergo: M ^ U = (/).
> I missed the earlier post, so I'll respond to this here. You have
> incorrectly stated the nature of my statement. Indeed, while deontology
> and consequentialism may sometimes agree on the same moral actions, they
> are two VERY distinct moral theories; there is no way you could construe
> one to be the other, despite the fact that they do have some overlap.
> > > I think that M and L intersect, but not by 100%,
> > > which is to say, as you've articulated, that not
> > > all things that can be defined as "me first" can
> > > be defined as libertarian. I think that L is either
> > > equal to U or all of L is in U, such that no L is
> > > external to U (which I think we agree). I believe
> > > that L may be defined: "me-first + nonaggression."
> >
> > I would agree with most of this, however, not with the total concept of
> > nonagression. Personal Caveats vis a vis nonagression:
> >
> > a) no first strike policy against those who espouse and practice the same.
> > b) maintain a first strike policy against those who fall into a utilitarian or
> > communitarian subset which has in the past demonstrated a high likelihood to
> > practice first strike agression.
> > c) maintain and practice skills and equipment for first strike preparedness, as
> > the threat of instant retaliation seems to be the only deterrent which agressor
> > type sets respect.
> You're going to maintain a first-strike policy against communitarians???
> You realize that this entails going out there with a weapon, TODAY, and
> killing as many non-libertarians as possible? Besides the fact that this
> plan will be totally ineffective, (we're outnumbered, millions to one,) it
> ignores the possibility that these people could learn from their mistakes,
> change their ways, and learn to coexist with their fellow human beings.
> As much as I dislike communitarians, you won't ever see me killing
> somebody just for holding that belief.

I never said I'd kill all of them. A First strike can range from a mild talking to,
up to the agression you are insinuating. Moreover, I was mainly thinking of it in
terms of the policy I would have in a libertarian world, not the current one.

   Michael Lorrey
------------------------------------------------------------ Inventor of the Lorrey Drive
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