•  3
    "With increasingly divergent views and commitments, and an all-or-nothing mindset in political life, it can seem hard to sustain the level of trust in other members of our society necessary to ensure our most basic institutions work. This book features interdisciplinary perspectives on social trust. The contributors address four main topics related to social trust. The first topic is empirical and formal work on norms and institutional trust, especially the relationships between trust and human …Read more
  •  17
    The Persistence of the Leveling Down Objection
    Erasmus Journal for Philosophy and Economics 12 (1): 1-25. 2019.
    According to the Leveling Down Objection, some, if not all, egalitarians must concede that leveling down can make things better in a respect—in terms of equality. I argue, first, that if this is true, then it is hard for such egalitarians to avoid the even more disturbing result that leveling down can be better all-things-considered. I then consider and reject two attempts to take this particular sting out of being an egalitarian. The first is Tom Christiano’s argument that the egalitarian is no…Read more
  •  11
    The Ethics of Policing and Imprisonment (edited book)
    Springer Verlag. 2018.
    This volume considers the ethics of policing and imprisonment, focusing particularly on mass incarceration and police shootings in the United States. The contributors consider the ways in which non-ideal features of the criminal justice system―features such as the prevalence of guns in America, political pressures, considerations of race and gender, and the lived experiences of people in jails and prisons―impinge upon conclusions drawn from more idealized models of punishment and law enforcement…Read more
  • Conversations in International Relations: Interview with Andrew Linklater
    with R. Devetak and S. Kaempf
    International Relations 27 (4): 481--505. 2013.
  •  1
    Satisficing: The Rationality of Preferring What is Good Enough
    Dissertation, University of Michigan. 1998.
    It is widely maintained that self-interested rationality is a matter of maximizing one's own good or well-being. Rationality more generally is also frequently characterized in maximizing terms: the rational thing to do in any decision context is whatever is best in terms of one's interests or will lead to the greatest preference-satisfaction, My dissertation consists of three independent papers that challenge this orthodoxy by lending support to "satisficing," the idea that it is rational to pre…Read more
  •  55
    Prioritarianism
    Philosophy Compass 9 (11): 756-768. 2014.
    Prioritarianism can usefully be seen as a corrective to both egalitarianism and utilitarianism. It allegedly corrects for egalitarianism insofar as it tends toward equality but seems immune to the Leveling Down Objection. It allegedly corrects for utilitarianism insofar as it emphasizes improving peoples' lives but is distribution-sensitive, favoring benefiting those who are worse off over those who are better off, other things equal. The best way to understand the view and assess its prospects …Read more
  •  13
    Are Terrorists Cowards?
    Public Affairs Quarterly 19 (4): 331-342. 2005.
  •  8
    Paternalism: Theory and Practice (edited book)
    Cambridge University Press. 2013.
    Is it allowable for your government, or anyone else, to influence or coerce you 'for your own sake'? This is a question about paternalism, or interference with a person's liberty or autonomy with the intention of promoting their good or averting harm, which has created considerable controversy at least since John Stuart Mill's On Liberty. Mill famously decried paternalism of any kind, whether carried out by private individuals or the state. In this volume of new essays, leading moral, political …Read more
  •  416
    Compassion and Pity: An Evaluation of Nussbaum’s Analysis and Defense
    Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 7 (5): 487-511. 2005.
    In this paper I argue that Martha Nussbaum's Aristotelian analysis of compassion and pity is faulty, largely because she fails to distinguish between an emotion's basic constitutive conditions and the associated constitutive or "intrinsic" norms, "extrinsic" normative conditions, for instance, instrumental and moral considerations, and the causal conditions under which emotion is most likely to be experienced. I also argue that her defense of compassion and pity as morally valuable emotions is i…Read more
  •  80
    More on the Motive of Duty
    The Journal of Ethics 11 (1): 65-86. 2007.
    A number of neo-Kantians have suggested that an act may be morally worthy even if sympathy and similar emotions are present, so long as they are not what in fact motivates right action–so long as duty, and duty alone, in fact motivates. Thus, the ideal Kantian moral agent need not be a cold and unfeeling person, as some critics have suggested. Two objections to this view need to be answered. First, some maintain that motives cannot be present without in fact motivating. Such non-motivating reaso…Read more
  •  12
    Should Desert Replace Equality? Replies to Kagan
    Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 4 (3): 1-28. 2010.
    Many people are moved by the thought that if A is worse off than B, then if we can improve the condition of one or the other but not both that it is better to improve the condition of A. Egalitarians are buoyed by the prevalence of such thoughts. But something other than egalitarianism could be driving these thoughts. In particular, such thoughts could be motivated, instead, by a combination of the belief that desert should determine how people fare and the belief that, for the most part, people…Read more
  •  77
    As a result there is a considerable literature on the topic. I think, however, that the treatment in the literature is incomplete because there is a failure to examine the relevant emotions in significant detail, and in particular to consider their complexity and the conditions of their warrant. As a result, both defenses and critiques of the motive of duty in terms of reliability are inadequate as they stand
  •  76
    Is Equality Essentially Comparative?
    Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 10 (2): 209-226. 2007.
    Larry Temkin has shown that Derek Parfit’s well-known Mere Addition Paradox suggests a powerful argument for the intransitivity of the relation “better than.” The crux of the argument is the view that equality is essentially comparative, according to which the same inequality can be evaluated differently depending on what it is being compared to. The comparative view of equality should be rejected, I argue, and hence so too this argument for intransitivity.
  •  31
    The Motive of Duty and the Nature of Emotions: Kantian Reflections on Moral Worth
    Canadian Journal of Philosophy 33 (2): 183-202. 2003.
    It is unclear in the Groundwork exactly what Kant takes to be necessary for an act to be morally good or worthy. Traditionally it has been thought that for Kant there are two conditions: it is 1) done in accord with duty, or the moral law, and 2) done for the sake of duty alone. The second condition is commonly thought to entail that an act is not morally good if the agent has a ‘supporting inclination’ or desire to do what is right — be it an inclination of self-interest, or one stemming from s…Read more