Combining Philosophers

Ideas for Michael Burke, Gordon Graham and Karen Armstrong

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22. Metaethics / C. Ethics Foundations / 1. Nature of Ethics / g. Moral responsibility
The chain of consequences may not be the same as the chain of responsibility [Graham]
     Full Idea: From a utilitarian point of view, the error of Archduke Ferdinand's driver (he turned up a cul-de-sac) was the worst in history, ...but the chain of consequences may not be the same as the chain of responsibility.
     From: Gordon Graham (Eight Theories of Ethics [2004], Ch.7)
     A reaction: Can you cause something, and yet not be responsible for it? The driver was presumably fully conscious, rational and deliberate. He must share the responsibility for catastrophe, just as he shares in the causing of all the consequences.