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[Xmca-l] Re: Appeal for help

Well, perhaps you should suggest an introduction to ethics, Michael? I will bow out for the moment.


Andy Blunden
On 9/07/2016 12:19 AM, Glassman, Michael wrote:

Perhaps any other moment I might have let this go.  But the BBC piece is superficial and not an enormous amount of help in current discussions I think.

I am well aware of the flaws in our establishment media in the U.S. which is a mirror of establishment media in Britain, often times worse.  But I really suggest you try and gain an understanding in the distributed and diffuse media outlets that have arisen and taken hold in the United States.  There is some very interesting and thoughtful stuff on outlets such as Mother Jones, Balloon Juice, the Nation to name just a few.  I read a piece on Talking Points Memo tonight which is one of the best short pieces in a time of crisis I have read in a while.  Try and understand something before casting general aspersions.  This is not some type of cultural tug of war - especially as my culture seems to be bleeding at the moment.

Take care,


From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] on behalf of Andy Blunden [ablunden@mira.net]
Sent: Friday, July 08, 2016 10:02 AM
To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Appeal for help

I think I would go to the BBC for reliable information a
long time before I resorted to ANY American source, Michael.

Just take 10 minutes to read.


Andy Blunden

On 9/07/2016 12:00 AM, Glassman, Michael wrote:
The BBC seems somewhat an ironic source for ethics - especially with everything that is happening in Britain right now what withthe Chitcotte report (sp?) and the Brexit, where BBC played no small part.

But I thought habit was actually the nub of the current debate on ethics - especially virtues ethicists vs. the communitarians.  Didn't McIntyre argue in AFTER VIRTUE that virtue ethicists had destroyed the role of ethics by focusing on it as a deontological enterprise (that damn Kant again).  That perhaps we were better off taking our ethics from habit because it gave us a social base. Something we could follow with true cause, something to trust in rather than something to aspire to - a branch of what Annalisa refers to as normative ethics.  I guess McIntyre does not consider himself a communitarian but he makes an argument.

We are going through an intense crisis in ethics here is the United States that just got raised four or five notches last night.  I fear the role that proclamations of virtue will play in the days of head, yet I can't think of any other road out of this dark time.


-----Original Message-----
From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of Andy Blunden
Sent: Friday, July 08, 2016 8:19 AM
To: xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu
Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Appeal for help

Perhaps xmca could take a break from discussing Ethics while everyone studies



Andy Blunden

On 8/07/2016 10:03 PM, Jonathan Tudge wrote:
I think that virtue ethicists influenced by Aristotle would be
cautious about linking virtues and habits. A habit may be simply
rule-governed.  For example, I follow the rule to always say "thank
you" when given a gift and always give, in return, a gift of equal
value, but I do so without understanding why I should express thanks.
I can hardly be said to have the virtue of gratitude.  That's why
neo-Aristotelians invoke the concept of phronesis, or practical
wisdom.  I have to understand the meaning of expressing thanks and
engaging in grateful behaviour, as well as doing it on a regular basis (when appropriate), and that comes with experience.

In case anyone's interested, fuller thoughts on this issue appear in
Tudge, Freitas, & O'Brien (2015). The virtue of gratitude: A
developmental and cultural approach. * Human Development, 58*, 281-300.




Jonathan Tudge

Office: 155 Stone


Mailing address:
248 Stone Building
Department of Human Development and Family Studies PO Box 26170 The
University of North Carolina at Greensboro Greensboro, NC 27402-6170

phone (336) 223-6181
fax   (336) 334-5076


On Thu, Jul 7, 2016 at 11:30 PM, Greg Thompson

Anyone have suggestions of writings on ethics from a CHAT perspective?

Also, I was quite taken by Annalisa's linking ethics to "habit"
precisely because this is the way that I would like to construe
ethics - embodied habits/dispositions (person X habitually responds
to a particular type of situation with behavior Y). To say anything
more requires invoking one ethical framework or another (and even my
definition does this since the construal of "a particular type of
situation" as such necessarily already invokes cultural
meaningfulnesses that are also likely to entail ethical frameworks).


On Fri, Jul 8, 2016 at 10:52 AM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:

... and this is really not the forum for clarifying these issues of
Ethics, honestly.


Andy Blunden
g On 8/07/2016 11:36 AM, Christopher Schuck wrote:

Much of this last interchange seems to be as much about meta-ethics
as normative ethics. Andy chooses to identify ethics with human
activity in terms of practical norms (and some epistemologists
argue that practical reason is inherently normative). Others might
see it more in terms of "ideal good" (as Annalisa put it). If we're
discussing how ethics is to even be conceptualized and approached
(e.g. questioning dichotomies of "good" and "evil", whether a
priori or a posteriori is relevant, virtues as opposed to
criterion-based consequentialism) - we're getting into meta-ethics.
For what that's worth.

On Thu, Jul 7, 2016 at 9:18 PM, Annalisa Aguilar <annalisa@unm.edu>

Hi Andy,
So you are describing Normative Ethics, not Ethics.

Interestingly, "ethics" does derive from the Greek word for "habit"

A habit seems to have a lack of awareness in it. Certainly habits
are hard to break, which is why we hope to have good habits, not
bad ones.

Unless you would like to define what you mean by "Practical norms"
it seems to be an "amoral" phrase to me.

Typically, as I understand it, ethics is the study of human
morality in the attempt to define what is good and right, vs. not
good and not
one can determine what is proper actions to live by (what habits
are worth having). I consider that to be a consideration of values
a priori. In terms of what is ideal or hypothetical.

Normative ethics seems to be a study of actions a posteriori,
after the fact.

Please note that I do not like to use the terms "evil" or "wrong"
and prefer to orient from the relations of what is good and what is right.
avoids dichotomies, and it allows for a spectrum of something
right, or having more goodness than something else.

Getting back to utilitarianism, I still see it as a justification
for economics, that is, economics as practiced today, which is
usually not done scientifically, though it is very mathematical in
nature. To measure utility requires all kinds of strange formulae,
and that's why I used
metaphor hall of mirrors.

Still, I prefer to consider utility as a projection, than a reflection.

Eating humans has a projected value of goodness in one society,
but not in another.

Not harming myself or others seems to have a universal
application, and so it doesn't seem to be a projected subjective
value, but a reflected
I may claim that a projected value is relative and subjective
while a reflected one is a universal, objective value.

Happiness is also a universal, objective value. I don't know
anyone who doesn't value happiness. However what makes people
happy is a
subjective value. That's where utility comes in.

For what that is worth.

Kind regards,


Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Anthropology
880 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
Brigham Young University
Provo, UT 84602