Explaining Egoistic Benevolence and More
Q&A Radio: 22 December 2013
I answered questions on explaining egoistic benevolence, and more on 22 December 2013. Greg Perkins of Objectivist Answers was my co-host. Listen to or download this episode of Philosophy in Action Radio below.
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Segments: 22 December 2013
Question: How can we better explain how helping others can be egoistic? In your October 7, 2013 radio show, you observed that people often don't understand how acting kindly and generously towards friends is self-interested. Instead, they think that being benevolent toward anyone is "other-regarding" and hence, altruistic. How can we egoists untangle this seeming conflict for people?
Answer, In Brief: Egoists must do a better job of explaining that egoism — properly understood — is not manipulative, mercenary, predatory, or criminal. To see that, people need to understand egoism versus altruism in big-picture terms, as well as show how and why relationships with others can and should be win-wins.
Rapid Fire Questions (56:54)
- Is there a limit to compartmentalization?
- Is it morally okay to lie at birthdays and Christmas for the sake of a surprise?
- Do those who abstain from voting still have the right to criticize the current administration?
- What kind of countermeasures can be taken against the hijacking of science – as seen with global warming – in the future?
- How can a person become more optimistic that rational ideas will be the norm of the future?
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About Philosophy in Action
I'm Dr. Diana Brickell (formerly Diana Hsieh). I'm a philosopher, and I've long specialized in the application of rational principles to the challenges of real life. I completed my Ph.D in philosophy from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2009. I retired from work as a public intellectual in 2015.
From September 2009 to September 2015, I produced a radio show and podcast, Philosophy in Action Radio. In the primary show, my co-host Greg Perkins and I answered questions applying rational principles to the challenges of real life. We broadcast live over the internet on Sunday mornings.
My first book, Responsibility & Luck: A Defense of Praise and Blame, can be purchased in paperback and Kindle. The book defends the justice of moral praise and blame of persons using an Aristotelian theory of moral responsibility, thereby refuting Thomas Nagel's "problem of moral luck." My second book (and online course), Explore Atlas Shrugged, is a fantastic resource for anyone wishing to study Ayn Rand's epic novel in depth.
I can be reached via e-mail to [email protected].