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A Discourse on Happiness for a Drug-Free Nation

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Jennifer B.
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  1. Introduction
  2. Evaluating a situation with a utilitarian perspective
  3. Emphasizing on the nature of pleasure
  4. Issues with utilitarianism
  5. Conclusion
  6. Work cited

For the most part, there are two desirable products of problem solving: personal pleasure and the happiness of others. This difference between selfishness and unselfishness has often defined moral decision making, the former being nothing less than sin and the latter being utterly commendable in its simple self-sacrifice. But neither case provides for a strong society; the egoist will never allow for anyone else to rise to power, but the altruist will never allow himself to rise to power. And a desire for power by all is what propels a nation to dominance. In the hopes of combining these extremities into a more effective model, James Mill and Jeremy Bentham designed the framework for a new belief known as utilitarianism. But its numerous successes and numerous failures leave many modern thinkers unable to accept, or more importantly, discredit the philosophy.

[...] A Discourse on Happiness for a Drug-Free Nation For the most part, there are two desirable products of problem solving: personal pleasure and the happiness of others. This difference between selfishness and unselfishness has often defined moral decision making, the former being nothing less than sin and the latter being utterly commendable in its simple self-sacrifice. But neither case provides for a strong society; the egoist will never allow for anyone else to rise to power, but the altruist will never allow himself to rise to power. [...]


[...] Happiness is measured the agent's own greatest happiness, but the greatest amount of happiness altogether? (Mill 37). All ulterior motives aside, this is a very ethical mindset, for altruism promotes unselfishness, and a society based on cooperation and consideration is a healthy society. But happiness is also measured outside the constraints of moral reasoning. Over time, humanity as a species has constructed codes of living, rules that govern society and border on indisputable. John Stuart Mill, in designing rule- utilitarianism, clearly brought this flaw to the forefront. [...]

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