(refutation of disagreement with 2. A.)
Refutation of claiming the best way to uphold the worthwhile is to promote what is best for me:
- Note: this view is known as ethical egoism
- What is best means the most good, but only considering the good of ego is paltry compared to the good of all persons who may be affected, therefore merely being concerned with ego's good cannot coherently be defended as what is best.
- Selfish people demand special treatment without any special reason of merit. If it is claimed "because it is me," then everyone has their own self. It is true that oneself has a special relationship with oneself, but that does not imply that any other persons are any less real or of any less value.
- Demanding special treatment without giving any good reason for that commits the fallacy of special pleading, which indicates that arbitrary favoritism is occuring.
- Sometimes ethical egoism is defended by arguing in favour of psychological egoism, the thesis that any given person acts ultimately out of self-interest, even when one looks after the interests of others. The idea of psychological egoism is that even when one is helping others, one enjoys it because one feels empowered or admired. If one cannot help but be self-interested, then it follows that any options in ethics, if we are candid, will be based in self-interest. However, many people act for others even when one is not likely to feel especially powerful or admired as a result, the aim being just to benefit the other person. If it is then claimed that subconsciously one is selfish, then that is basing a conclusion on a lack of evidence. If there is no conscious selfishness, but conscious concern for others for their own sake, that means there is evidence of unselfishness and no evidence of selfishness, so we should pronounce in favour of unselfishness.
- While promoting what is best for ego alone cannot be philosophically defended, it can be psychologically explained in that people sometimes get carried away with their own immediate feelings and do not always consider the feelings of others, which are not themselves felt by ego.
RETURN TO DISAGREEMENTS WITH PREMISE 2.
RETURN TO MAIN ARGUMENT