June 17, 2024

Basic Morality Index

Michael van der Galien and Jason Steck both wrote about this article in the NY Times:

Many people will say it is morally acceptable to pull a switch that diverts a train, killing just one person instead of the five on the other track. But if asked to save the same five lives by throwing a person in the train’s path, people will say the action is wrong. This may be evidence for an ancient subconscious morality that deters causing direct physical harm to someone else. An equally strong moral sanction has not yet evolved for harming someone indirectly.

Where do moral rules come from? From reason, some philosophers say. From God, say believers. Seldom considered is a source now being advocated by some biologists, that of evolution.

Here’s a link to a morality test recommended by Ann Althouse.

My results:


Conservative/liberal baseline:


The graphs do reveal something about my personal philosophy, which is that if people simply take care of their down business and do what’s right that fairness will take care of itself.


Marc is a software developer, writer, and part-time political know-it-all who currently resides in Texas in the good ol' U.S.A.

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