1. 43252.632047
    Synthetic biology has immense potential to ameliorate widespread environmental damage. The promise of such technology could, however, be argued to potentially risk the public, industry, or governments not curtailing their environmentally damaging behaviour or even worse exploit the possibility of this technology to do further damage. In such cases, there is the risk of a worse outcome than if the technology was not deployed. This risk is often couched as an objection to new technologies, that the technology produces a moral hazard. This paper describes how to navigate a moral hazard argument and mitigate the possibility of a moral hazard. Navigating moral hazard arguments and mitigating the possibility of a moral hazard will improve the public and environmental impact of synthetic biology.
    Found 12 hours ago on PhilSci Archive
  2. 43282.632282
    There has been increased attention on how scientific communities should respond to spurious dissent. One proposed method is to hide such dissent by preventing its publication. To investigate this, I computationally model the epistemic effects of hiding dissenting evidence on scientific communities. I find that it is typically epistemically harmful to hide dissent, even when there exists an agent purposefully producing biased dissent. However, hiding dissent also allows for quicker correct epistemic consensus among scientists. Quicker consensus may be important when policy decisions must be made quickly, such as during a pandemic, suggesting times when hiding dissent may be useful.
    Found 12 hours, 1 minute ago on PhilSci Archive
  3. 87957.632305
    Is value personal in the sense that what is of value is of value for someone, or is it impersonal in the sense that what is of value, while it pertains to a subject, is of value simpliciter. Ross was a staunch proponent of the view that value is impersonal. I am a proponent of the view that value is personal.
    Found 1 day ago on L. Nandi Theunissen's site
  4. 199340.632321
    Let me begin by thanking the American Philosophical Association for the invitation to present this Dewey Lecture and Gideon Yaffe for his kind and thoughtful introduction. As a Dewey Lecturer I have been asked "to reflect broadly and in an autobiographical spirit on philosophy in America as seen from the perspective of a personal intellectual journey.” I’ll begin by anticipating three themes that emerge for me from my reflections. The first––echoing John Stuart Mill’s focus on “experiments in living” –– is that much research in philosophy has the form of a temporally extended experiment: we ask what happens when we try to understand certain basic phenomena by drawing on and developing certain ideas. The second theme is that our experiments in philosophy are commonly shaped by on-going interactions and dialogues with each other: each of our experiments is commonly shaped by dialogues with others who are engaged in related, though frequently somewhat different, philosophical experiments. The third theme is in the form of advice: don’t expect that where a philosophical experiment leads is where you thought it would lead; be prepared for surprises. Indeed, if you never find yourself surprised about where your philosophical experiment has led you might want to rethink. In my own experience then, and to return to the charge to me as Dewey lecturer, much of “philosophy in America” involves more-or-less shared experiments, shared experiments that can progress in unanticipated and sometimes exciting ways. In these reflections I will try to tell you about my “personal intellectual journey,” as embedded in multiple such shared experiments, and where it has, to my surprise, led me.
    Found 2 days, 7 hours ago on Michael Bratman's site
  5. 210605.632345
    One topic that came up a few times at Peter Singer’s farewell conference was that of replaceability: whether we should be OK with an individual (person or animal) dying so long as a new replacement individual is created to take their place, with a future at least as good as the original otherwise would have had. …
    Found 2 days, 10 hours ago on Good Thoughts
  6. 216299.632359
    Research on the role of values in science and objectivity has typically approached trust through its epistemic aspects. Yet, recent work on public trust in science has emphasized the role of non-epistemic values in building and maintaining trust. This paper will use a concept of trust that adds concerns about justice to epistemic conditions to investigate this problem in relation to public health. I will argue that trust-conducive values, particularly justice, are relevant in deciding which value influences are legitimate in scientific decision-making. Drawing on public health ethics, I will provide a consequentialist justification for employing trust-conducive values. While several concepts of justice have been explored in the context of public health, I will further draw on public health ethics, focusing on a view that brings together both distributive and procedural aspects. For illustration, I will use the case of cardiovascular disease prevention, particularly how concerns about justice apply when choosing between population-based and individual-based approaches.
    Found 2 days, 12 hours ago on PhilSci Archive
  7. 243510.632371
    On his Substack, Chris Freiman argues that libertarianism is “liberalism without exceptions.” Basically, liberals (in the European meaning of the word) and libertarians agree that the state ought to prioritize a range of civil liberties (freedom of association, freedom of speech, …) but disagree with respect to the status of property. …
    Found 2 days, 19 hours ago on The Archimedean Point
  8. 311977.632383
    What's Really Wrong with "Luxury Beliefs" A critique of Rob Henderson, with a callback to Charles Murray I’ve yet to meet Rob Henderson, but I’ve watched some of his cultural criticism, and he seems like a great guy. …
    Found 3 days, 14 hours ago on Bet On It
  9. 447057.632394
    I.J. Good’s “On the Principle of Total Evidence" (1967) looms large in decision theory and Bayesian epistemology. Good proves that in Savage’s (1954) decision theory, a coherent agent always prefers to collect, rather than ignore, free evidence. It is now well known that Good’s result was prefigured in an unpublished note by Frank Ramsey (Skyrms 2006). The present paper highlights another early forerunner to Good’s argument, appearing in Janina Hosiasson’s “Why do We Prefer Probabilities Relative to Many Data?" (1931), that has been neglected in the literature. Section 1 reviews Good’s argument and the problem it was meant to resolve; call this the value of evidence problem. Section 2 offers a brief history of the value of evidence problem and provides biographical background to contextualize Hosiasson’s contribution. Section 3 explicates the central argument of Hosiasson’s paper and considers its relationship to Good’s (1967).
    Found 5 days, 4 hours ago on PhilSci Archive
  10. 504768.632406
    We propose an approach to the evolution of joint agency and cooperative behavior that contrasts with views that take joint agency to be a uniquely human trait. We argue that there is huge variation in cooperative behavior and that while much human cooperative behavior may be explained by invoking cognitively rich capacities, there is cooperative behavior that does not require such explanation. On both comparative and theoretical grounds, complex cognition is not necessary for forms of joint agency, or the evolution of cooperation. As a result, promising evolutionary approaches to cooperative behavior should explain how it arises across many contexts.
    Found 5 days, 20 hours ago on PhilSci Archive
  11. 506850.632424
    Pregnancy and birth can be approached from many philosophical angles, including philosophy of law, philosophy of biology, and mereology. Some authors have focused on ethical issues surrounding abortion and assisted reproduction, others have discussed pregnancy in phenomenological terms, and others have used pregnancy and/or birth as a springboard for more theoretical reflections on the nature of selfhood, care, embodiment, and personal identity (see entries on feminist perspectives on reproduction and the family, parenthood and procreation, and the grounds of moral status for discussions of these and related issues).
    Found 5 days, 20 hours ago on Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
  12. 515485.632437
    TLDR: The vibes are bad, even though—on most ways we can measure—things are (comparatively) good. The last post showed how disproportionately-negative sharing can emerge from trying to solve problems. …
    Found 5 days, 23 hours ago on Stranger Apologies
  13. 542184.632449
    Anyone who has lived abroad knows the frustration of being held liable for the misdeeds of your country. Israelis get grilled about Palestine, Chinese receive disbelief over Xinjiang, Britons are berated for colonialism. ‘It’s not my fault!’ some are tempted to reply. ‘I attend protests; or I am politically repressed; or I wasn’t even born yet!’ Sometimes, the effects of our states’ wrongdoings hit us materially. When states pay compensation to the victims of their wrongdoings, these payments almost always detract from what would otherwise be enjoyed by those living in the state. Is this effect justified?
    Found 6 days, 6 hours ago on Stephanie Collins's site
  14. 620428.632461
    Robert Chapman’s Empire of Normality: Neurodiversity and Capitalism (2023) charts thinking about normality and pathology, showing how both have links to the historical conditions set by capitalism. The book also outlines a Marxist notion of neurodiversity, which rejects liberal capitalism. In this review, I outline Chapman’s argument and highlight its strengths. I also explore a potential consequence of what Chapman does not explore in their book, which is significant for notions of neurodiversity: if we reject liberal capitalism, we might also need to reject a key assumption of liberal capitalism; namely, that people have good self-understanding.
    Found 1 week ago on PhilSci Archive
  15. 650572.632472
    Philosopher Jimmy Licon wasn’t impressed with philosophers’ top arguments against my “Make Desertion Fast” proposal. With Jimmy’s kind permission, I’m cross-posting his critique here. At the start of the Russian war against Ukraine, the economist Bryan Caplan made an interesting proposal: Enticement to desert should be a standard part of military strategy, but hardly ever is. …
    Found 1 week ago on Bet On It
  16. 657868.632483
    My previous post suggested a constraint on warranted hostility: the target must be ill-willed and/or unreasonable. This is why I’m so baffled by common hostility towards both utilitarianism and effective altruism. …
    Found 1 week ago on Good Thoughts
  17. 676418.632495
    Does artificial intelligence (AI) pose existential risks to humanity? This question has been on some surprising tables lately – tables in the White House and 10 Downing Street, amongst other places. Some critics feel it is getting too much attention. They want to push it aside, or into the distant future, in favour of conversations about the immediate risks of AI.
    Found 1 week ago on Huw Price's site
  18. 823556.632506
    Over the last couple of weeks, we have been seeing in France many pro-Palestinian student protests of the same kind as in U.S. university campuses. The most active (though relatively speaking they are few) have been some students of the French elite school Sciences Po. …
    Found 1 week, 2 days ago on The Archimedean Point
  19. 913385.632524
    The Scene: Socrates is watching a massive protest of students at the School of Athens. Elektra, a protest leader, and Leonidas, a merchant, notice Socrates furrowing his brow in puzzlement. Leonidas: [approaches Socrates] Aha, Socrates. …
    Found 1 week, 3 days ago on Bet On It
  20. 1058609.632537
    We take up Jason Brennan’s critique of democracy as formulated in his monograph Against Democracy (2016) and discuss the arguments that Åsa Wikforss presents against Brennan’s views in her book Därför demokrati (2021). Both authors grant the importance of knowledge for political decision-making, but they differ in their respective understandings of what counts as knowledge and they draw very different conclusions from the relevant knowledge requirement. Our general aim is to detect problems in democracy as well as in attempts to criticize democracy. We also briefly consider Brennan’s positive proposal to replace democracy by “epistocracy”, a form of government according to which only those citizens are entitled to vote who are “competent” in a sense to be discussed. Our aim is not to propagate any particular form of government. We merely wish to help the reader to recognize that democracy in particular involves a whole lot of assumptions that are in need of a better justification than what is normally provided.
    Found 1 week, 5 days ago on Tero Tulenheimo's site
  21. 1086398.632548
    One of the most annoying myths of PHIL 101 is that any interest in people’s intentions (or quality of will) is inherently “Kantian”, or at least contrary to consequentialism. I disagree: there are obvious reasons to care about whether or not others are acting from good intentions, and consequentialists can say perfectly plausible things here (even though many, traditionally, have failed to do so). …
    Found 1 week, 5 days ago on Good Thoughts
  22. 1121963.63256
    TLDR: Things seem bad. But chart-wielding optimists keep telling us that things are better than they’ve ever been. How to explain this gap? Hypothesis: the point of conversation is to solve problems, so public discourse will focus on the problems—making us all think that things are worse than they are. …
    Found 1 week, 5 days ago on Stranger Apologies
  23. 1179853.632571
    When you think about the reasons that may justify the adoption of a democratic regime rather than any other alternative system, most of us will think of the value of political equality, the respect and dignity of persons viewed as moral equals, making sure that everyone’s interests are taken into account in collective-decision making, leaving the possibility of getting rid of incompetent/corrupt political leaders open, favoring the competition between a plurality of views, and probably a few others. …
    Found 1 week, 6 days ago on The Archimedean Point
  24. 1209885.632582
    One of the most pressing tasks for metaethicists is that of solving the location problem: finding a home for morality in the natural world. It goes without saying that some have risen to the occasion more enthusiastically than others, and it is one enthusiast in particular that shall occupy my attention here. The naturalist moral realist affirms continuity between ethics and the empirical sciences, striving to integrate her metaethics with the outputs of scientific theorizing. To her mind, moral epistemology does well to take science as its guide; moral facts are ripe for empirical investigation.1 Unfortunately, the naturalist canon does not always reflect these noble ambitions.2 The naturalist is committed to letting the world do (much of) the talking. But so far, she has scarcely given it the chance to speak. My aim here is to set us back on course. The organizing theme of this paper is that the outputs of empirical investigations are of underrecognized significance for the moral naturalist. Its more specific contention is that these empirical resources help her to address two fundamental challenges that she faces.
    Found 2 weeks ago on Jessica Isserow's page
  25. 1432378.632594
    Disclaimer: Despite the appearances, there is no Michel Foucault in the following essay (quite the contrary actually)! Let’s consider a fictional place called “Wisdom Town.” Wisdom Town is a small town, or maybe a village of a few dozen individuals at most. …
    Found 2 weeks, 2 days ago on The Archimedean Point
  26. 1521369.632605
    If I have done you a serious wrong, I bear a burden. I can be relieved of that burder by forgiveness. What is the burden and what is the relief? The burden need not consist of anything emotional or dispositional on your side, such as your harboring resentment or being disposed not to interact with me in as amicable a way as before or pursuing my punishment. …
    Found 2 weeks, 3 days ago on Alexander Pruss's Blog
  27. 1601668.632617
    The underreporting of suspected adverse drug reactions remains a primary issue for contemporary post-market drug surveillance or ‘pharmacovigilance.’ Pharmacovigilance pioneer W.H.W. Inman argued that ‘deadly sins’ committed by clinicians are to blame for underreporting. Of these ‘sins,’ ignorance and lethargy are the most obvious and impactful in causing underreporting. However, recent analyses show that diffidence, insecurity, and indifference additionally play a major role. I aim to augment our understanding of diffidence, insecurity, and indifference by arguing these sins are underwritten by value judgments arising via epistemic risk. I contend that ‘evidence-based’ medicine codifies these sins.
    Found 2 weeks, 4 days ago on PhilSci Archive
  28. 1711485.632628
    Content warning: This post discusses sexual assault, stalking, harassment, abuse, and also contains all the spoilers. Sigh. I started watching Baby Reindeer on Netflix with a great deal of trepidation. …
    Found 2 weeks, 5 days ago on More to Hate
  29. 1711606.632639
    According to urban legend, people’s number one fear is public speaking. Death is number two.1 I don’t know if it’s true, but if it is, I’d bet that the most dreaded form of public speaking is to stand onstage, alone, attempting to make an audience of strangers laugh. …
    Found 2 weeks, 5 days ago on Under the Net
  30. 1721120.632657
    Feminists have disagreed about whether women can choose gendered subordination autonomously. Less attention has been paid, however, to the socio-ontological questions that underlie this debate. This article introduces novel cases of ‘thwarted autonomy,’ in which women pursue autonomy but in ways that reinforce gendered subordination, in order to challenge dominant proceduralist and substantivist views, as well as motivate an expressivist view of the social self as a promising foundation for an account of autonomy. On this view, which draws on the Hegelian tradition, agents must embody their desires and values in the social world to achieve self-understanding. Social meanings and norms therefore mediate the form an agent’s expressive activity takes, and the sense of self she develops. An expressivist view, I argue, allows us to reinterpret women’s outward acquiescence to gendered subordination as an attempt to express autonomy in an oppressive social context. It also points towards a robustly social conception of autonomy to aid in the diagnosis and redress of patriarchal oppression.
    Found 2 weeks, 5 days ago on Ergo