2013-05-11

Ethics

I just had a look at permaculture ethics. The planet, people and surpluses are mentioned. It's easy to look them up in detail.

I don't know if it's the same for others, but it kind of rubs me the wrong way when people - not just permaculturists, but anyone - talk about ethics. It's a bit as if they wanted to impose theirs on me.

This speaks more of my sensitivity than of whatever it is that those others may really want to do. I guess. :-P (We people are varied.)

That said, I don't exactly dislike the notion of hacker ethics. Based, you know, on initiative, cooperation, sharing and play. (I'm people too.)

All of which leaves me ruminating ... two things (which end up being three, as usual):

(1) Could there be an intersection, or maybe an edge, among both ethics? An intersection would be acceptable for me personally. An edge, as between ecosystems (a beach is land and sea together), would mean more riches.

(2) In any case, what are ethics? I think each is an array of weights for our decision functions. We decide among options based on factors, and those factors are more or less important depending on our values.

"Values" are nothing special: just the elements and features a specific person considers desirable in a specific situation. (Desirability that's usually relative to other elements and features.)

So a "value set" or an "ethic", in my simplification, is the array of weights we apply to the array of factors in the subjective cognitive function that takes specific factors in and outputs a specific decision.

If you're deciding, say, on starting a business installing solar panels, you may give different weights to being lazy, to earning money, to your wish to leave the campsite better than you found it, or to whatever other factors you're considering.

Finally, in my ruminations, the very notion that a decision is "a function with weighted factors we use to choose between options" makes me wonder (3) whether there might be a meta-ethics which would give lots of value to thinking: the (sometimes cooperative) activity of including more factors, generating further alternatives, etc.

So there you go! :-)

1 comentario:

  1. A very good article on permaculture, religions, and the next step forward.

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