The view is a form of. From a philosophical standpoint, being selfish can be against your best interest, and therefore is immoral. These worries are not decisive. Some philosophers distinguish between individual ethical egoism and universal ethical egoism. Psychological egoism is supported by our frequent observation of self-interested behavior. I have a distinct history, memories, and perhaps special access to my mental contents. Thus, her view is a conjunction of both rational egoism in the standard sense and , because according to , egoism cannot be properly justified without an based on : Her book 1964 explains the concept of rational egoism in depth.
The acts required for continued self-preservation, including the enjoyments of benefits achieved by such arts, are the first requisites to universal welfare. Perhaps not, it depends on whether it is in your self-interest. For a very different argument to show again that an alternative to morality is less minimal than expected — directed more at the instrumental theory than rational egoism — see Korsgaard 2005. I deny that others ought to maximize my good they should maximize their own goods. It is commonly held that moral judgments must be practical, or capable of motivating those who make them. Many of these arguments come from Ayn Rand, especially The Virtue of Selfishness, Atlas Shrugged, and the Fountainhead. So, the existence of even one self-interested act that you think bad proves that ethical egoism is not the whole of your moral story, it does not explain all of your moral beliefs.
We are raised with morals, told to obey the moral laws, we marry people with the same moral values that we posses, and then pass on our moral values to our children. We should do whatever will promote the interests of everyone alike. It would follow that for me, a distinction between my welfare and that of others would be arbitrary, and the rational egoist claim that each ought to maximize his own welfare would be unjustified when applied to me. Coercing individuals to sacrifice their moral interest for the large society implies denying them their fundamental value of personal decision-making. The ethical egoist might reply that, if predominant egoism is true, ethical egoism may require less deviation from our ordinary actions than any standard moral theory. Similarly, if the impartial point of view is defended as non-arbitrary because it makes no distinctions, both the point of view of various groups and my individual point of view are suspect.
Charge: Ethical egoism is contradictory because it allows one and the same act to be evaluated as both right and wrong. We do not know the interests of others. A tragedy of the commons, however, assumes some degree of public land. Now, obviously not every scenario is that simple. Instead, it says that we ought to only do what is in our personal rational self-interest; this self-interest should be long term. Once again, we see that the moral action is the one that is least selfish, because sharing your apples is actually in your best interest. There are those who say it is human nature to be motivated by self-interest.
We will return to this question—of whether egoism implies immorality—in other sections. It is presumptuous to show a human that they are inadequate and that others are able to do what they cannot. Is not every human being an individual? Welfare results from my action, but cannot be the only aim of my action. For sample discussions of these two objections, see Baier 1958 189—191; Campbell 1972; Frankena 1973 18—20; Kalin 1970. Normative egoism is about what is normal for human beings.
If one allows this inflated definition of self, the theory is now closer to utilitarianism than ethical egoism. De Lazari-Radek and Singer reply that the recommendations of rational egoism are very close to those of kin altruism, and much closer to those of kin altruism than are the recommendations of utilitarianism 2014 194. It is unlikely that this argument proves that ethical egoism generates all of the standard duties to others. Others argue that we always pursue whatever we think will bring us the most benefit. For many of these worries, and others, see Stich, Doris and Roedder 2010.
In fact, all persons are better off if each follows their own interest. Psychological egoism states that human actions are based in self-interest. Second, Elliot Sober and David Wilson argue that evolutionary theory supports altruism. Caring for others is a warranted concern without which, it leads to egoist radicalization. Ethical egoists can reply, however, that egoism generates many of the same duties to others. This argument can be directed against rational egoism as well. They believe that it is important to look out only for number one.
They then define self-interest as seeking your own good, but not at any cost to others. This allows for action that fails to maximize perceived self-interest, but rules out the sort of behavior psychological egoists like to target — such as altruistic behavior or motivation by thoughts of duty alone. So the ground of my care is not identity, but rather the psychological connections through memories, etc. According to Rand, voluntary trade alone can assure that human interaction is mutually beneficial. Often, and most plausibly, these desires are restricted to self-regarding desires. Recent trends to greater appreciation of egoism within tend to come from less classical directions such as or e.