Re: Selfishness vs Altruism; an outdated dicotomy?
Sat, 20 Nov 1999 09:33:59 EST

In a message dated 99-11-16 23:57:39 EST, (Glen Finney) wrote:

> I believe that the most important quality in the universe is self. But
> not my self alone. All selves are valuable to me (though I do have
> favorites). I am interested in bettering the lives of all selves, mine
> others. Of course, my main focus will be on doing what is best for myself
> and those others I have the closest contact with. I believe in
> responsibilities of proximity and scale and competence. The closer you
> to a self, the greater your responsibility (and who is closer than
> the smaller the scale, the fewer people need act (and a single person is
> smallest scale, so you and a few others should in general be able to help
> with most problems that effect just you), and of course the greater your
> ability to render assistance in any situation determines responsibility
> I
> have had medical training, especially ACLS, my responsibility to respond
> an injured person is greater than that of someone who has only seen CPR on
> TV). Now, this theory puts great emphasis on taking care of yourself as
> much
> as possible because 1) you are usually, but not always, in the best
> to do so and 2) by caring for yourself, you help lighten the burden of
> responsibilities on those around you. But it is not a sink or swim
> nor does it forget the other person.

Glen, I can't add one thing to this -- you've summmed up my own personal ethical and social philosophy just about exactly.

     Greg Burch     <>----<>
      Attorney  :::  Vice President, Extropy Institute  :::  Wilderness Guide   -or-
                         "Civilization is protest against nature; 
                  progress requires us to take control of evolution."
                                           Thomas Huxley