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Consequentialism, Integrity, and Ordinary Morality

Alex Rajczi

Utilitas, 2009, vol. 21, issue 3, 377-392

Abstract: Consequentialism is enticing but also seems overly demanding. As a result, many non-consequentialists try to explain why we aren't required to maximize the good. One explanation is the Integrity Explanation: we are not required to maximize the good because morality must make room for us to pursue our projects and interests. Some people hope that the Integrity Explanation will not just explain why consequentialism is false, but simultaneously vindicate the common-sense permission to generally refrain from promoting the good of other people and instead spend our time on non-harmful actions of our choice. I argue that this hope is unrealistic, because if any version of the Integrity Explanation is correct, morality will not contain broad permissions to refrain from promoting the good of others and do as we choose.

Date: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:cup:utilit:v:21:y:2009:i:03:p:377-392_99