Ethics: Ethical Egoism and Utilitarianism

550 Words2 Pages
Ethical Egoism Egosim can either be descriptive or normative Descriptive egoism holds that for each individual, there is only one ultimate aim survival and the betterment of the sole individual based on their own hierarchical principles. Normative egoism has the individual making claims about what should be done to do the "right" thing, rather than what one does Ethical egoism requires that for an action to be moral it must maximize one's own self interest Rational actions are moral actions Ethical egoism puts the self in front of all others in finding morality Essentially, the argument follows that each of us is most familiar with our own wants and needs. We do not know the wants and needs of others in the same way, nor are we equipped to always follow in others' best interests. It is then more efficient and logical to pursue our own needs and look out for ourselves so that others do not have to. This view also assumes that the individual is more able to provide for their own needs and also has that responsibility. Therefore, because the onus is on the self, society can be free to work for the betterment of larger projects that benefit everyone as opposed to taking care of individuals (Feinberg, 2008, pp. 520-3). At times, ethical egoism can benefit the larger group, as in a doctor in a rural town with free rent and a captive audience. The city provides the rent, the doctor the care, but all benefit. Utilitarianism Act Utilitarianism is the view that the
Open Document