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Ideas of John Kekes, by Text

[American, fl. 1993, Professor at New York State University.]

2010 The Human Condition
Intro p.4 Values are an attempt to achieve well-being by bringing contingencies under control
Intro p.4 Values help us to control life, by connecting it to what is stable and manageable
01.2 p.13 'Luck' is the unpredictable and inexplicable intersection of causal chains
01.5 p.22 Equal distribution is no good in a shortage, because there might be no one satisfied
02.4 p.43 To control our actions better, make them result from our attitudes, not from circumstances
03.1 p.50 There are far more values than we can pursue, so they are optional possibilities
03.2 p.53 Our attitudes include what possibilities we value, and also what is allowable, and unthinkable
03.3 p.57 Unconditional commitments are our most basic convictions, saying what must never be done
03.3 p.61 Doing the unthinkable damages ourselves, so it is more basic than any value
04 Intro p.67 Control is the key to well-being
04.4 p.85 Society is alienating if it lacks our values, and its values repel us
04.5 p.86 We are bound to regret some values we never aspired to
05 Intro p.88 Innumerable values arise for us, from our humanity, our culture, and our individuality
05 Intro p.88 Well-being needs correct attitudes and well-ordered commitments to local values
05.2 p.91 Cultural values are interpretations of humanity, conduct, institutions, and evaluations
05.5 p.107 Kant focuses exclusively on human values, and neglects cultural and personal values
05.5 p.113 The big value problems are evil (humanity), disenchantment (cultures), and boredom (individuals)
06.3 p.122 Evil isn't explained by nature, by monsters, by uncharacteristic actions, or by society
06.4 p.131 The ideal of an ideology is embodied in a text, a role model, a law of history, a dream of the past...
06.4 p.131 Ideologies have beliefs about reality, ideals, a gap with actuality, and a program
06.5 p.136 Reason and morality do not coincide; immorality can be reasonable, with an ideology
07.2 p.148 An action may be intended under one description, but not under another
07.4 p.159 Responsibility is unprovoked foreseeable harm, against society, arising from vicious character
08.5 p.182 Practical reason is not universal and impersonal, because it depends on what success is
09.1 p.187 Boredom destroys our ability to evaluate
09.1 p.188 Boredom is apathy and restlessness, yearning for something interesting
09.4 p.201 Relativists say all values are relative; pluralists concede much of that, but not 'human' values
10.4 p.222 If morality has to be rational, then moral conflicts need us to be irrational and immoral