Prohibition Was a Failed Experiment in Moral Governance A century ago, Prohibition went into effect around the United States, and the evangelical Protestants who had fought for 80 years to make it a reality celebrated. With the ratification of the … Continue reading Law and prohibition
What’s Wrong with Moral Foundations Theory, and How to get Moral Psychology Right Once the exclusive preserve of philosophy and theology, the study of morality has now become a thriving interdisciplinary endeavor, encompassing research in evolutionary theory, genetics, biology, animal … Continue reading Problems of cooperation
What Counts As Altruism? People Judge Good Acts Harshly When They Are Performed For Selfish Ends Philosophers have long debated what constitutes genuine altruism. Some have argued that any acts, no matter however charitable, that benefit both the actor as … Continue reading Prosocial acts
Your (Future) Car’s Moral Compass Picture a driverless car cruising down the street. Suddenly, three pedestrians run in front of it. The brakes fail and the car is about to hit and kill all of them. The only way out … Continue reading Morality for cars
Psychology’s favourite moral thought experiment doesn’t predict real-world behaviour Would you wilfully hurt or kill one person so as to save multiple others? That’s the dilemma at the heart of moral psychology’s favourite thought experiment and its derivatives. In the … Continue reading Judgment vs. behaviour
What can economics teach us about moral ecology? In exploring the various connections between morality, theology, and economics, we routinely long for philosophers and theologians who understand economics, just as we crave economists who understand the bigger picture of self-interest … Continue reading The language of morality
The Upside of Envy It might seem petty of me, but for some time now, I have been bellyaching about the graybeards in black tights — those sixty- and seventysomething fitness fanatics crowing about the umpteen miles they log on … Continue reading Is self-awareness useless?