Moral Decisions – Some Examples (Part 8)

Continuing with my last post.

Clearly, combining consequetialism with deontology can have very harmful results (housing crisis of 2008 and Obamacare).  But what about virtue ethics.  Virtue ethics would suggest that our leaders utilize the cardinal virtues of wisdom, courage, moderation, and justice, as well as the love of neighbor, when considering moral decisions.

The virtue ethicists were either absent from the moral decisions regarding housing and health care, or drowned-out be the opposition.  You would think that they would rely on the virtues of justice and love of neighbor to at least understand the benefits to American citizens of affordable housing and health care.  But, you would also think that they would have the wisdom to understand the risks of such programs and the humility to suggest that such policies may not work and might have very harmful unintended consequences.  And, you would hope that in the face of severe opposition, that they would still have the courage of their convictions to stand up and be heard.

The courage aspect has been lacking in our leaders.  They may follow this third moral philosophy of virtue ethics, which I consider the toughest of the three to follow, but, without the virtue of courage, the philosophy loses its effectiveness.  And without an effective third philosophy, the remaining two moral philosophies, much easier to follow, expand to take its place.

6 thoughts on “Moral Decisions – Some Examples (Part 8)

  1. orfhod

    So what would you like to do, making a philosophy in a state and its actions fruitful?

    Maybe instituting virtues? If we compare the decay of moral values and virtue ethics in govermentalization, can we say, we profited as population because of the schism of church and state?

    Instead, the individualized agents of practical values and willing conservatives of traditions and cultural needs, perish in the mass of the ruled. Can we set a new idealism (postidealizm) of effective virtues in politics, global business and in the impel of the masses? is a compulsion just compatible with the outter forces of an subject?

    1. oliver Post author

      I agree. I think that being able to at least define the actions of our governmental leaders along philosophical terms rather than labels like conservative, liberal, Republican, Democrat, is a step in the right direction. Now we can start to have a much more productive conversation about where the country is heading and what kind of leaders we want by referencing the three moral philosophies rather than political party affiliations.

  2. Pingback: The Question Of Character And Courage | We dream of things that never were and say: "Why not?"

  3. Pingback: Rationally Speaking: What virtues, and why? | SelfAwarePatterns

    1. oliver Post author

      I believe that the four cardinal virtues of prudence (or wisdom), courage, temperance (or moderation), and justice (or concern for fellow man) are the virtues worth obtaining, and in that order. The first two virtues are needed to recognize and accept the call to adventure, the last two can be earned during the adventure. But an additional virtue of love of neighbor is needed if the adventure is to be successful. This love of neighbor is a virtue that others must possess (as well as the adventurer) for the adventurer to succeed and to be awarded happiness, and for the flourishing of society.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s