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Social Contraction vs. Ethical Egoism - Essay Example

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Summary

Name: Instructor: Course: Date: Social Contraction vs. Ethical Egoism The need to describe or establish ground rules on how people behave or ought to behave led philosophers to theorize immensely. There are many theories that try to assert certain obligatory aspects in regard to morality with little success…

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Social Contraction vs. Ethical Egoism

This theory also holds that it is alright to be this way; it is rational. However, in the real world, if everybody blindly followed their hearts desires then there would be chaos. To this situation, this theory calls for application of rationality from a different angle. This angle prescribes that people should cooperate with one another and cut down on the purely self serving pursuits. This aspect defines the social contract nature of this theory (Shafer-Landau 188). People will not live life to the fullest, but they will avoid a worse fate of being in constant upheaval with society. What constitutes upheaval? Economists answer this question through the hypothetical prisoner’s dilemma situation. In this situation, two individuals must undertake actions that are not beneficial to the other party. Since it is rational to do the best for ones self, then the individuals both undertake these actions knowing full well that the other party will suffer. In a life time, there are countless situations that mirror the conflicts in this hypothetical situation. Maximizing self interest as it turns out is not a worthwhile approach to life. People while be brutal indulging horrid actions just to stay ahead (Shafer-Landau 192). There will be no trust, hope or peace for those with the slightest urge to be “nice” hence the constant upheaval. ...
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