Julius Schoenherr
University of Maryland
The Limits of Aggregating Competing Claims

There is no large number of very small bads which is worse than a small number of very large bads - or so it seems plausible to say. In this talk I defend this intuition arguing that very weak claims constituted by very small bads (e.g. minor headaches, a bitter taste on the tip of your tongue) do not figure in aggregation. I argue that weak claims cannot be aggregated interpersonally to compete against a strong claim, if informed and reflective subjects aren't willing to give weight to these claims intrapersonally with regard to their own lives. Furthermore, I present empirical data which very tentatively suggests that most people do, in fact, not give weight to minor harms intrapersonally.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Skinner 1115