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Provenance
The drunk utilitarian: Blood alcohol concentration predicts utilitarian responses in moral dilemmas

Highlights

• Greene’s dual-process theory of moral reasoning needs revision.
• Blood alcohol concentration is positively correlated with utilitarianism.
• Self-reported disinhibition is positively correlated with utilitarianism.
• Decreased empathy predicts utilitarianism better than increased deliberation.

Abstract

The hypothetical moral dilemma known as the trolley problem has become a methodological cornerstone in the psychological study of moral reasoning and yet, there remains considerable debate as to the meaning of utilitarian responding in these scenarios. It is unclear whether utilitarian responding results primarily from increased deliberative reasoning capacity or from decreased aversion to harming others. In order to clarify this question, we conducted two field studies to examine the effects of alcohol intoxication on utilitarian responding. Alcohol holds promise in clarifying the above debate because it impairs both social cognition (i.e., empathy) and higher-order executive functioning. Hence, the direction of the association between alcohol and utilitarian vs. non-utilitarian responding should inform the relative importance of both deliberative and social processing systems in influencing utilitarian preference. In two field studies with a combined sample of 103 men and women recruited at two bars in Grenoble, France, participants were presented with a moral dilemma assessing their willingness to sacrifice one life to save five others. Participants’ blood alcohol concentrations were found to positively correlate with utilitarian preferences (r = .31, p < .001) suggesting a stronger role for impaired social cognition than intact deliberative reasoning in predicting utilitarian responses in the trolley dilemma. Implications for Greene’s dual-process model of moral reasoning are discussed.
Jaded Prole
A drunk I knew years back told me that everything can be broken down to three steps.
Utilitarian simplification
Tibro
QUOTE
Scenario: Trolley Driver

"Suppose you are the driver of a trolley. The trolley rounds a bend, and there come into view ahead five track workmen, who have been repairing the track. The track goes through a bit of a valley at that point, and the sides are steep, so you must stop the trolley if you are to avoid running the five men down. You step on the brakes, but alas they don't work. Now you suddenly see a spur of track leading off to the right. You can turn the trolley onto it, and thus save the five men on the straight track ahead. Unfortunately,…there is one track workman on that spur of track. He can no more get off the track in time than the five can, so you will kill him if you turn the trolley onto him" (Thomson 1985, 1395).

What would you do?

Throw the switch in order to maximize well-being (five people surviving is greater than one).
Throw the switch because you are a virtuous person, and saving five lives is the type of charitable and compassionate act a virtuous person performs.
Do not throw the switch because that would be a form of killing, and killing is inherently wrong.
Do not throw the switch because you are a Christian, and the Ten Commandments teach that killing is against the will of God.
Do not throw the switch because you feel aiding in a person's death would be culturally inappropriate and illegal.

Each answer describes a unique reaction to the dilemma, and correlates with one of the five ethical paradigms of Utilitarianism, Deontology, Divine Command Theory, Ethical Relativism, and Virtue Ethics.


QUOTE
Utilitarianism is a theory in normative ethics holding that the proper course of action is the one that maximizes utility, usually defined as maximizing total benefit and reducing suffering or the negatives. This theory is an economic analysis that is human-centered (or anthropocentric) and has a moral foundation.


Drinking on duty while in charge of a public conveyance means that you're going to be held liable for the death(s) no matter what decision you make. Only the lawyers will profit from your decision. You should have become a lawyer.
Provenance
A lawyer's view on Trolley & Footbridge.
G&C
QUOTE
This article is available to subscribers only.
Tibro
Hey, wait, is this supposed to be some kind of allegory about the moral reasoning behind quarantining health care workers who put their lives at stake to fight ebola on the front lines of infection and the subsequent threat of spread in their home communities?
Provenance
More of a metaphor for an analogous allegory.
Jack Batemaster
On devrait être Ricard.
Tibro
We should be heading off as many deaths as possible without the fat man throwing obstacles in the way.
Provenance
QUOTE(Tibro @ Oct 29 2014, 12:10 PM) *
We should be heading off as many deaths as possible without throwing the fat man as an obstacle in the way.

Tibro
I'd say fuck 'im, butt I'm self monitoring against the exchange of any bodily fluids. This xit gives me an elevated temperature.

I should talk to my lawyer.
Provenance
Lawyers can only do so much. But they do it all over you.
Tibro
Reason enough for those containment suits.
Jack Batemaster
On devrait être Ricard.
Tibro
QUOTE(Jack Meatbaster @ Oct 30 2014, 07:32 PM) *

On the way out retard.

Awe contraree, they are on the way in.
Jack Batemaster
J'ai oublié la virgule, retard …
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