Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy <p>The&nbsp;<em>Journal of Ethics and&nbsp;Social Philosophy</em>&nbsp;is a peer-reviewed online journal in moral, social, political, and legal philosophy. The journal welcomes submissions of articles in any of these and related fields of research. &nbsp;The journal is interested in work in the history of ethics that bears directly on topics of contemporary interest, but does not consider articles of purely historical interest.</p> <p>The <em>Journal of Ethics and&nbsp;Social Philosophy</em> aspires to be the leading venue for the best new work in the fields that it covers, and applies a correspondingly high editorial standard. &nbsp;But it is the view of the associate editors that this standard does not preclude publishing work that is critical in nature, provided that it is constructive, well-argued, current, and of sufficiently general interest.</p> <p>While the&nbsp;<em>Journal of Ethics and&nbsp;Social Philosophy</em>&nbsp;will consider longer articles, in general the journal would prefer articles that do not exceed 15,000 words, and articles of all lengths will be evaluated in terms of what they accomplish in proportion to their length. Articles under 3k words should be submitted as discussion notes, which are reviewed and published separately from main articles. &nbsp;</p> USC School of Philosophy en-US Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 1559-3061 You Just Didn't Care Enough <p>We refine the intuitively appealing idea that you are blameworthy for something if it happened because you did not care enough. More formally: you are blameworthy for X (where X may be an action, omission, or outcome) just in case there is the right causal-explanatory relation between your poor quality of will and X. First, we argue that blameworthiness for actions, omissions, and outcomes is concerned with <em>negative </em>differences: you are blameworthy for the fact that X occurred instead of X*, where X is worse than X*. Second, we argue that the <em>way</em> in which your quality of will is poor has to fit <em>what </em>you are blameworthy for. With these refinements, the account already gives intuitively correct verdicts in cases of forgetting, making a negative difference to a nevertheless good result, and doing an action with runaway consequences. We then discuss what the right causal-explanatory relation is and suggest that it is simply causation, understood in the right way. Here, we draw on the account of causation developed in Touborg, <em>The Dual Nature of Causation</em>. According to this account, there are two necessary and jointly sufficient conditions for causation. Roughly, C causes E rather than E* iff (a) C is process-connected to E, and (b) C makes E more secure and E* less secure. With this account of causation, our account of blameworthiness now also gives correct verdicts in omission, pre-emption, and switching cases, Frankfurt-style cases, and collective harm cases.</p> Mattias Gunnemyr Caroline Torpe Touborg Copyright (c) 2022 Mattias Gunnemyr, Caroline Torpe Touborg 2023-02-15 2023-02-15 24 1 10.26556/jesp.v24i1.1696 The Red Mist <p>An influential critique of anger holds that anger comes at an important epistemic cost. In particular, feeling angry typically makes risk less visible to us. This is anger’s ‘red mist.’ These epistemic costs, critics suggest, arguably outweigh the epistemic benefits commonly ascribed to anger. This essay argues that the epistemic critique of anger is importantly misleading. This is not because it underestimates anger’s epistemic benefits, but rather because it overlooks the fact that anger’s red mist performs a crucial moral function. By concealing risk, the red mist helps protect the dignity and self-respect of those who live under severe and unchosen risk. This function is vitally important in non-ideal circumstances, where many are unjustly subjected to dignity-impairing risk. And it is irreplaceable, in that it cannot readily be performed by other political emotions, such as hope. Beyond providing a novel defence of anger, this argument has a broader upshot. Anger’s red mist reveals that ignorance is not always problematic in politics. Accordingly, it should not be treated—as has standardly been the case—as an unmitigated political evil. In the first instance, our efforts are better spent ascertaining when ignorance is a problem, and when, instead, it performs a felicitous function.</p> Maxime Charles Lepoutre Copyright (c) 2022 Maxime Charles Lepoutre 2023-02-15 2023-02-15 24 1 10.26556/jesp.v24i1.2145 The Interesting and the Pleasant <p>I argue that interesting experiences are experientially valuable in the same fashion as pleasant experiences, yet that the interesting is nonetheless a distinct value from the pleasant. Insofar as it challenges the hedonist’s assumption that pleasure and pain are the only evaluative dimensions of our phenomenological experiences, my argument here serves both as a defense of the value of the interesting and as an important critique of hedonism.</p> Lorraine Besser Copyright (c) 2022 Lorraine Besser 2023-02-15 2023-02-15 24 1 10.26556/jesp.v24i1.1819 Against Broome's "Against Denialism" <p>In this paper, I critically evaluate John Broome’s recent arguments against individual denialism, the thesis that current humans (in some sense) do no wrong by not refraining from performing acts that emit insignificant amounts of greenhouse gases. After isolating and clarifying Broome’s position, I argue that Broome’s argument overgenerates; is in tension with his defence of carbon offsetting; and uses problematic assumptions. I close by noting the upshot of my critical evaluation on other issues in applied</p> Kabir Bakshi Copyright (c) 2022 Kabir Bakshi 2023-02-15 2023-02-15 24 1 10.26556/jesp.v24i1.2419 Prudential Parity Objections to the Moral Error Theory <p>According to the moral error theory, all moral judgments are false. Until lately, most error theorists were <em>local</em> error theorists; they targeted moral judgments specifically and were less skeptical of other normative areas. These error theorists now face so-called “prudential parity objections”, according to which whatever evidence there is in favor of the moral error theory is also evidence for a prudential error theory. The present paper rejects three prudential parity objections: one based on the alleged irreducible normativity of prudential reasons; another on the lack of a story about the normativity of hypothetical reasons; yet another on the very nature of reasons generally. I argue that these objections leave an important variant of a local moral error theory intact.</p> François Jaquet Copyright (c) 2022 François Jaquet 2023-02-15 2023-02-15 24 1 10.26556/jesp.v24i1.1922 Can We Have Moral Status for Robots on the Cheap? <p>Should artificial agents (such as robots) be granted <em>moral status</em>? This seems like an important question to resolve, given that we will encounter a growing number of increasingly sophisticated artificial agents in the not too distant future. However, many will think that before we can even start to tackle questions about the moral status of artificial agents, we first need to solve tricky issues in the philosophy of mind. After all, most orthodox views about moral status imply that only entities with a mental life are eligible for moral status. But, whether an unfamiliar entity like an artificial agent has a mental life raises controversial questions in the philosophy of mind. Given this, one might hope that we can resolve questions about the moral status of robots via “minimalist” views that give sufficient conditions for granting moral status to an entity that we can know to be satisfied without knowing whether the entity in question has a mind. This paper argues that we should be pessimistic about the prospects of minimalist views avoiding controversial questions in the philosophy of mind, by arguing that minimalist sufficient conditions are only plausible if combined with assumptions in the philosophy of mind. </p> Sebastian Köhler Copyright (c) 2022 Sebastian Köhler 2023-02-15 2023-02-15 24 1 10.26556/jesp.v24i1.1659 Actual Guidance Is Enough <p>In a recent article, Sharadin and van Someren Greve call into question an idea many philosophers take to be platitudinous, namely that deontic evaluation is capable of action guidance. In this critical note, I argue that their skeptical worries are unwarranted. The central problem in their argument, I claim, is a too unrestrained account of "actual guidance". According to &nbsp;this account, an agent's deontic evaluation of an action alternative that bears the result that the action in question is both right <em>and</em> wrong would actually guide the agent with respect to whether or not to perform it. This, I argue, is implausible because it does not help the agent to settle the issue she is interested in. I propose an alternative account of actual guidance, according to which a deontic evaluation actually guides an agent with respect to whether or not to perform an action, X, if, and only if, <em>it</em>&nbsp;<em>changes the agent's perception of the relative weight of the pros and cons of X-ing</em>. This understanding of "actual guidance", I claim, is coherent, natural, and better captures our pre-theoretical sense of what it means for a consideration to help an agent to settle the question of whether or not to perform an action. However, since Sharadin's and van Someren Greve's skeptical endeavor entirely depends on the claim that we <em>could not</em> understand "actual guidance" in this way, their argument never really gets off the ground. I conclude that the authors do not provide a sufficient basis for doubting that deontic evaluation is capable of doing what it is for.</p> Stefan Fischer Copyright (c) 2022 Stefan Fischer 2023-02-15 2023-02-15 24 1 10.26556/jesp.v24i1.1972