Browsing All Posts filed under »Metaphysics«

Does Moral Responsibility Come in Degrees?

January 14, 2015 by

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My 4th substantive post is up over at Flickers. You can find it here. I’ve copied and pasted it below for those who don’t feel like clicking the link. Does Moral Responsibility Come in Degrees?   Many have assumed either implicitly or explicitly that moral responsibility comes in degrees, but why? For me, it seems […]

Luck, Choice, and Rationing Health Care

January 12, 2015 by

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According to some philosophers, a feature that matters for assessing inequalities is how the inequality comes about. One theory that assesses inequalities in this way is presented by Ronald Dworkin in a position called “luck egalitarianism.” According to the luck egalitarian, a factor that matters when assessing inequalities in a given situation –and whether these […]

On a Freedom Requirement for Forgiveness

January 10, 2015 by

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My 3rd post over at Flickers of Freedom is up. You can find it here. I’ve copied and pasted it for those of you not interested in seeing how the conversation develops over at Flickers. We have all forgiven someone before.  In fact, forgiveness can often serve as a key ingredient in our most cherished […]

Optimistic Skepticism and Forward-Looking Blame

January 8, 2015 by

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Below you can find the post in its entirety. Click here to see the original at flickers of freedom and to join in the discussion if you see fit. OPTIMISTIC SKEPTICISM AND FORWARD-LOOKING BLAME Many philosophers (1) have spent substantial time wrestling with, expanding on, and arguing against the central ideas put forth in P.F. Strawson’s […]

Free Will Skepticism and ‘Ought’ Judgments

January 3, 2015 by

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You can find the link to my first post at Flickers here. It’s titled “Free Will Skepticism and ‘Ought’ Judgments”. For those of you who have been following APT for some time I posted on this topic here in late 2013. The posts are very different but are on the same topic. In this later […]

Free Will Skepticism and Its Implications: An Argument for Optimism — Part 2

December 27, 2014 by

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Originally posted on Scientia Salon:
by Gregg D. Caruso [This two-part essay was inspired by the author’s TEDx talk on the same topic, which can be viewed here.] [1] I. Addressing Pragmatic Concerns with Free Will Skepticism Let me begin with the concern that giving up free will belief will increase anti-social behavior. This concern…

Free Will Skepticism and Its Implications: An Argument for Optimism — Part 1

December 27, 2014 by

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Originally posted on Scientia Salon:
by Gregg D. Caruso [This two-part essay was inspired by the author’s TEDx talk on the same topic, which can be viewed here.] [1] Contemporary theories of free will tend to fall into one of two general categories, namely, those that insist on and those that are skeptical about the…

Free Will Funnies

November 11, 2014 by

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Why Evolution Is True I can’t resist a good free will cartoon. This one, courtesty of reader jsp, comes from FoxTrot Classics, by Bill Amend: The problem, of course, is that the “preordination” comes not from God, but from the laws of physics. Still, I can predict from those laws that yes, the Joker would be […]

CFA: Workshop on the Epistemic Dimension of Moral Responsibility

November 11, 2014 by

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This looks to be an excellent workshop! I will be submitting an abstract. Find the Workshop info here. For a summary of the workshop see below. Workshop 2015 Responsibility – The Epistemic Dimension II When: May 12-13 2015 Where: VU University Amsterdam It is generally agreed that moral responsibility has an epistemic dimension. Moral responsibility and […]

Essays and Opinions on Free Will (SLATE)

November 5, 2014 by

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Slate Magazine has recently produced an extremely accessible series of essays on Free Will, you can find them here. The authors include philosophers Alfred Mele, Thomas Nadelhoffer, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Robin Collins, Kathleen Vohs, Robert Kane and Derk Pereboom. The series was funded by the John Templeton Foundation, but, for reasons mentioned by Mele in a recent […]

Physics, Determinism, and Possible Worlds

November 5, 2014 by

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A recent post on the IFL Science page (which I happen to like very much) discusses a new interpretation of quantum physics that was developed by a team led Howard Wiseman of Griffith University in Australia. The team recently published this paper, first authored by Michael Hall, which suggests that Quantum theory is deterministic and that all possible worlds […]

Deflationism, Conservativity, Truth.

October 19, 2014 by

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Over the summer I spent a lot of time learning about truth, and particularly deflationary theories of truth. In this post I will outline some of my thoughts about one particular criterion that is often argued for (and against) by various players in the recent literature on deflationism about truth: conservativity. The plan is to […]

A Free Will Resource via Al Mele

August 25, 2014 by

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Al Mele, one of the most distinguished and recognizable philosophers writing on free will has launched a new blog where he plans to field questions and generate discussion a few times a week (see the blog here). He hopes to answer questions related to his last two books where he takes on scientific claims that […]

Is Dennett rethinking free will?

April 4, 2014 by

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Coyne seems to be adopting agnosticism with regards to free will. This is far from FW skepticism. Maybe Dennett is right to call him a “closet compatibilist”. I look forward to reading Dennett’s critique. Why Evolution Is True Reader Jiten called my attention to this post by Gregg Caruso on Flickers of Freedom about Dan […]

CFP: Free Will (University of Michigan-Flint)

February 26, 2014 by

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Details “Mankind has a free will; but it is free to milk cows and to build houses, nothing more.” — Martin Luther “[M]en believe themselves free, simply because they are conscious of their actions, and unconscious of the causes whereby those actions are determined.” ― Baruch Spinoza We have an intuitive sense of ourselves as […]

Sam Harris Still Needs to Read More Philosophy

February 12, 2014 by

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In a scathing review of Sam Harris’ pamphlet Free Will , Daniel Dennett rightfully calls out Harris for some obvious missteps that Harris has taken (once again).  Harris responds here. Though I am more aligned with incompatibilism these days, Harris again makes some serious missteps in his response. First, he forwards his compatibilist thesis with regards to […]

30 Views on Free Will

February 5, 2014 by

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Anyone trying to get caught up to date with the contemporary views in the free will debate will do well to visit this site (see here). This is the newest issue of Methode, and they interviewed 30 philosophers working on free will. Each philosopher, the line-up is impressive, was asked the same series of questions […]

Calgary Woman Gets 18 More Months In Prison (36 Total!) For Killing 2 Children?

January 30, 2014 by

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My initial reaction when reading the headline today was, WHAT!?! (see article here) Meredith Borowiec just killed two babies by putting them in the dumpster (leaving them for dead) and she can walk the streets in 18 months? I think my reaction is telling. To me, this woman ought to get punished with more severity. Why? Because […]

Romantic Dysfunction, BPD, and Moral Responsibility

January 22, 2014 by

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It is commonly argued that for one to be morally responsible, one must have control over one’s actions (see here for a run-down on arguments for that claim). Now, one does not generally concede that a person is moral pariah simply because the person is in the deepest stages of love, even if we do tend to […]

Martha Nussbaum, “What is Anger, and Why Should We Care?”

January 16, 2014 by

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Martha Nussbaum has given a very nice talk on why anger is “of dubious value in both life and the law“, the talk can be found here. Although it seems obvious that anger can be bad for our well-being and is often associated with acts of malice and bad intent (and rightfully so), I do […]