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Decisions Based On Ethical Consequences
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Utilitarianism encompasses one of the most influential as well as best known theories of morality. The principal idea behind the method is on whether actions are normally morally right or wrong as a result of their effects. Specifically it argues that the principal impacts of actions that are relevant are normally the good and the bad outcomes that they produce. Utilitarianism acts lay their focus on the impacts of the human actions while the utilitarianism rule has its focus on the impacts of the models of the actions (Shanahan & Wang, 2003). The supporters of utilitarianism argue that the objective of morality is in the making of life better through the increase amounting to good things in the world coupled with a decrease of the bad things. According to the utilitarian, an action is good or justifiable if the positive contribution has to the human beings. The utilitarianism argues that the making of decisions utilizes the utility that offers approval or disapproval of all actions relying on its ability to augment or diminish the happiness of the individual in question (Harris, 2002).
According to the utilization of the utilitarianism in the making of decisions, it argues that the consequences that an action has is what matters in the making of those decisions. Regarding the issue of consequences guiding the making of decisions, utilitarianism offers the best foundation for the making of such decisions. The overall good that a decision has should be the element utilized in the making of any ethical decision (Goodin, 1993). According to the consequentialism theory, the decision on the right act should be the one that offers as well as produces the largest number of consequences inconsistency with the expected outcomes. Rule consequentialism offers the determination that the action that is morally right is the one that utilizes a rule whose observation is going to offer the expected outcomes. One of the main desired outcomes from consequentialism is utilitarianism, arguing for the making of decisions that have the ability to offer the greatest good for the majority people (Halbert & Ingulli, 2009).
The application of utilitarianism in decision-making is normally ubiquitous because all decisions have measurable consequences. The application of deontology in utilitarianism argues that there are rules to govern the making of rules of the duties associated with the rules. According to utilitarianism, the assessment of the decision-making should be on the outcomes as well as consequences that the decisions will have on the recipients. It evaluates the overall costs as well as benefits to all the stakeholders on a personal level. The decision that is being reached should be the one that presents the greatest good to the greatest number of people and at the same time producing the least possible harm (Mill, 1987). Thus, the interest of every entity should be taken to be on the same level while reaching decisions and should encompass the interests of the other species with the possibility of suffering harm. Consequently, for any assortment of options, the mot ethical decision is the one that makes it possible to produce the ultimate balance of the benefits over the injury to the greatest number of stakeholders. The quantification of the harm could be in terms of the suffering along with the levels of contentment, monetary loss or gain. Additionally it could be in terms of individual preference relative value as well as the long and long-term impacts of the decisions (Mill, 1987).
The process of dealing with the various assortments of moral issues is normally perplexing since the decisions on how we are going to act as well as the guidelines on the decisions we make are not straight forward. With the objective of making the ethical decisions, we should initiate by getting all the facts about the decisions we are going to be making. It follows that some of the controversies as a result of the decision-making is as a result of failing to have all the facts relating to the issue (Hare, 1982). Appealing to our values is the other element that helps in the formulation of decisions that reflect an ethical grounding. Utilitarianism helps us assess the various courses of action that we ought to pursue to make the decision with the best outcome and minimal harm. Assessing the individuals who are going to be impacted by our decisions is the other attribute that will guide the moral decision-making process to produce the most favorable attributes. Finally, selecting the decision that is going to produce the least harm as well as greatest benefits will be the outcome of applying utilitarianism to the decision-making (Brandt, 1992).
The assessment of decisions mainly based on the amount of happiness or unhappiness that is as a result of the decision that has been taken; anything else is normally irrelevant. The greatest happiness principle is the ultimate utilization of utilization in decision-making. Thus, it depicts the intention of the ethical decisions as being to engender the greatest happiness to the largest number of people (Halbert & Ingulli, 2009). The unitary moral objectives are for the production of the highest possible amount of pleasure or else guarantee a decrease of pain as much as possible. Additionally in the making of the ethical decisions, the happiness of every individual is normally the same coupled with the fact that the needs of both humans and animals are relevant to the ethical decisions.
The decisions that are to be reached relying on utilitarianism shall be focusing on the consequences whose actions as well as policies possess the utility to all people who are to be impacted by the decisions. Additionally the formulation of the decisions needs the upholding of the fact that different people normally describe harms as well as benefits in a different manner. Thus, the teaching of the decisions needs to be informed by the diversity that people normally have in the context of assessing the situations (Brandt, 1992). Thus of the various decisions that are being considered, the decisions that produce the most ethical outcomes thus producing the greatest balance of benefits over harm adopted. Thus, the decisions for adoption will be the one which after assessment of the good as well as the bad consequences resulting from it will have the good outweighing the bad, making the decision ethical. Additionally the proponent of utilitarianism in decision-making tries to desist from the appealing to the divine revelations.
The main point of emphasis regarding utilitarianism is for the creation of a moral life avoiding the reference to biblical propositions as well as belief in God. It lays emphasis in the making of decisions having the greatest utility through the reliance on logic rather than biblical principles to guide the process of decision-making (MacDonald, 2014). The utilitarian system tries to replace revelation with because the creation of a more rigid foundation. Additionally the reinforcement of utilitarianism in the decision-making process is simple since numerous people are already utilizing the principle in their decision-making relying on the best consequence. Thus the fact that the making of the majority of our moral and ethical decisions relying on utilitarianism appears to be an extension of the daily decision-making process makes it adoption a simple factor (Rosen, 2003).
The teaching of the ethical decisions entails the utilization of a sensitivity that is trained on the ethicality of issues as well as an informed method for the exploration of the ethical attributes of decisions. The decisions will normally follow the evaluation of the considerations that are going to affect our decision on the appropriate course of action. Thus the ethical decisions an individual takes into consideration the best interest of all the individuals who could be affected by its consequences (Pettit, 1993). There should be giving more attention to the benefits that the individuals are going to attain from the decision-making certain that the parties do not run into harm from the resulting consequences’. The striking of the balance between the good over and thus acts as the focal point of utilitarianism and the making of ethical decisions.
Brandt, R. B. (1992). Morality, utilitarianism, and rights. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Goodin, R. E. (1993). Utility and the good. In P. Singer (Ed.), A companion to ethics (pp. 241–248). Malden, MA: Blackwell.
Halbert, T., & Ingulli, E. (2009). Law & ethics in the business environment: 2010 custom edition (6th ed.). Mason, OH: South-Western Cengage Learning.
Hare, R. M. (1982). Ethical theory and utilitarianism. In A. K. Sen & B. Williams (Eds.),
Harris, C. E.(2002). Applying moral theories (4th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.
MacDonald, C. (2014). Business Ethics, Decision Making for Personal Integrity & Social Responsibility (3rd ed.) New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Irwin
Mill, J. S. (1987). Utilitarianism and other essays. New York: Penguin Putnam.
Pettit, P. (1993). Consequentialism. In P. Singer (Ed.), A companion to ethics (pp. 230–240). Malden, MA: Blackwell.
Rosen, F. (2003). Classical utilitarianism from Hume to Mill. New York: Routledge.
Shanahan, T., & Wang, R. (2003). Reason and insight: Western and Eastern perspectives on the pursuit of moral wisdom (2nd ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth. Utilitarianism and beyond (pp. 23–38). New York: Cambridge University Press.
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