looking for a sys admin

Levi Pearson levipearson at gmail.com
Fri Dec 11 11:07:43 MST 2009

Charles Curley <charlescurley at charlescurley.com> writes:

> On Thu, 10 Dec 2009 16:27:30 -0700
> Bryan Sant <bryan.sant at gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Thu, Dec 10, 2009 at 1:50 PM, Robert Merrill
>> <robertmerrill at gmail.com> wrote:
>> > On Thu, Dec 10, 2009 at 1:48 PM, Merrill Oveson <moveson at gmail.com>
>> > wrote:
>> >>
>> >> Most of the time, people get treated as disposable assets.
>> >
>> > It is unfortunate but true, you just wrote the world's smallest book
>> > on career management.
>> Of course we're disposable assets.
> Sorry, no. People are not "assets", disposable or otherwise. They are
> human beings, and not to be used as means to one's own ends. Assets are
> things to be used, and used up: land, corn, buildings, etc.

This reminds me of Kant's categorical imperative, specifically his
second formulation of it: "Act in such a way that you treat humanity,
whether in your own person or in the person of any other, always at the
same time as an end and never merely as a means to an end"

This follows from his first formulation, which is based on the principle
of universality: "Act only according to that maxim whereby you can at
the same time will that it should become a universal law."  In other
words, true moral principles don't depend on particular conditions such
as the identity of actors.

Kantian ethics is very interesting, as it's a purely rational approach,
but I find it ultimately unfulfilling for the same reason.  I think a
system of ethics needs to be grounded in humanity, which includes our
emotions and intutions as well as rationality, but I still think Kant is
worth studying if only for his rationalization of what amounts to the
'golden rule'.


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