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PHI 236 Final Exam Review

by: Haley J Schuhl

PHI 236 Final Exam Review PHI 236

Marketplace > Illinois State University > PHIL-Philosophy > PHI 236 > PHI 236 Final Exam Review
Haley J Schuhl
GPA 3.59

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About this Document

The topics are out of order but they're all there! I wrote an overview of the articles that we will be tested on for our final exam.
Values and the Environment
Todd Stewart, Ph.D
Study Guide
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This 8 page Study Guide was uploaded by Haley J Schuhl on Sunday May 1, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to PHI 236 at Illinois State University taught by Todd Stewart, Ph.D in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 55 views. For similar materials see Values and the Environment in PHIL-Philosophy at Illinois State University.


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Date Created: 05/01/16
● Office hours next week: Monday 1­3, Tuesday 2­3, and Wednesday 2­3 ● Our final is 3:10 on Monday ● 5 true/false ● Answer 3 essay questions but we will be given a choice of which ones we want  to write about ● Very focused questions he might be able to help over email Review for the final! ● #3: What’s the main idea behind ecofeminism?  ○ There is a connection between the oppression of women and the  oppression of nature ○ Warren thinks that the logic of domination  ○ We use differences to rationalize oppression and exploitation ○ It’s a mindset that is built into the way that we are taught to think  about the world around us ○ Warren thinks that we need to learn to reject the logic of  domination and instead celebrate differences. There might not be any universal  traits that all women share or all respect­deserving beings share. That means  extending it to understanding that there is not some unified problem that  womanhood shares but we need to realize that there are many different groups  of people and they have unique problems they face ● #7: Schmidtz and tragedy of the commons ○ Right to exclude and control is an important part of private  property which can help combat the tragedy of the commons ○ There are certain benefits from control too in order to prevent  overuse ○ What sorts of problems will it not solve? → large scale externalities like smoke coming out of a private property will be hard to pin down blame on a certain person. Smoke and other large scale externalities can travel hundreds of miles which make it someone else’s problem ○ How would you privatize air or water? These are things that are  constantly move ○ It can be difficult to get people to agree to property schemes in  which case privatising would be difficult ○ Tragedy of the commons: there is a mismatch, individual incentive to use as much as possible but the costs are placed on everyone who is involved in the cost of overuse. Privatising can help reduce the mismatch in incentives  since the private owner will have to bear the cost of overusing their property. ● #6: Harden and overpopulation ○ He thinks that whenever you have a generous social safety net  (food aid, education) the costs of child rearing may be socialized so it might be  beneficial to the individual to have as many children as possible since they will be sources of income or care later in life or labor for family run businesses, but then  the community as a whole has to pay the cost for things like food stamps or  education of their children ○ This isn’t purposefully deliberate but people respond to these  incentives that they don't realize are there. The incentive structure influences  their choices and behaviors ○ He’s focused on the third world country  ○ Another way of looking at it: there’s another mechanism of looking of this as a tragedy of the commons → current people get the benefits of overpopulation but it’s future people who will pay the cost of it (we simply can’t grow enough food to feed everyone) ● #8: Perfect Moral Storm ○ A bunch of independent factors that converge and make climate  change almost impossible to solve ○ Lack of unified agency that has any power to decide and control emissions → countries don’t want to give up their sovereignty ○ Intergenerational conflicts ○ Difficulty in making required lifestyle changes ○ Politics and economics  ○ Who will pay the cost? Unless every country agrees to a certain  program then some countries are sure to resist agreeing to a climate change  program and use the reason “well, they’re not cutting back their emissions”  ○ Imagine telling people in the US that they can’t have their own car  because people in India are having their fields flooded with ocean water ○ Dispersion of cause and effect → areas contributing to pollution won’t necessarily feel the effects ● #4 Preservationism vs conservationism ○ Conservationists say that “wise use” is the best option, but  preservationists argue that the only wise use is no use. It’s very difficult to weigh  these options because it’s just so hard to predict the real outcomes of  environmental policies. Using the rain forest as a natural resource by cutting it  down might seem like a good option since we gain wood and arable land to grow  crops for human consumption. However, the unexpected consequences of  exposing humans to previously unknown diseases and missing out on atmospheric oxygen might make people realize no use was actually better than “wise use”.  One size will not fit all situations though. ○ Private property vs. unregulated commons: neither one of these  might be beneficial for the environment ■ Private property could be helpful because it has the right of exclusion  ■ Unregulated commons is an area that everyone  could use it (hunting or fishing)  ■ Now we have parks and lakes that are commons  but you have to pay for entry sometimes or there might be regulations, for example regarding how many fish you can take home ■ Africa has been treated as unregulated commons  ○ Preservationist critiques ■ Nature itself deserves respect, conservationism  treats nature instrumentally (it just becomes about money, the most profit  will be the option that will be chosen) ■ Given the increasing scarcity of “wilderness”,  conservationism ends up agreeing in practice with preservationism, we  should leave this piece of land alone   ■ Callicot said that whichever you endorse, it affects  the types of arguments you’re going to use  ○ What types of things would convince a conservationist that wise  use = no use ■ There could be unknown negative consequences to the use of something (it’s thought that HIV probably originated from  moving into the rainforest and eating primates) or we might destroy  something that we don’t understand the value of… Wise use is very  difficult to know/calculate  ■ There are often competing uses/competing goods.  One benefit of a tree would be the oxygen it gives off but we could also  use it for lumber.. Which is more useful? It’s difficult to know the wise use  ■ A pressing matter might outweigh the “better safe  than sorry” idea, because playing it safe might mean that people starve  ○ In practice, you might was well be a preservationist as resources  become more and more scarce  ○ Schmitdtz focuses more on ecosystems than on individual species ○ When is it that preservationist policies won't preserve? ■ When policies are imposed from the outside → ● outsiders might not understand the  local problems that people are having and it’s imposed to people  whom it affects can resent the policy. People who live the problem will understand it better. If people come up with the solutions  themselves they will deal with any negatives better than if it’s  imposed by an outsider ■ We need to be very careful about the economic  incentives we might accidentally create with policies/laws  ● Guy Grant: he was trying to support  his family by running a ranch where he also sold hunting licenses.  Due to laws, eventually his only income was raising cattle, so  instead of sharing land with other animals, he now had the  incentive to kill intruding animals.   ■ Making something illegal sometimes makes things worse. Think of the example of “the war on drugs” → creates a black market, unregulated, drives the prices up which creates incentive for people to sell it ● #5 Elephants ○ Can live around 70 years → their long lifespan means that they don’t cycle through quickly at all ○ Move about 6­12 miles per day but can move as much as 110  miles in a day  ○ Seasonal migrations, up to about 200 miles  ○ “Home range” for an elephant is about 35X35 kilometers square ○ Elephant mourning: elephants will touch the recent dead, might  return to burial area of a long deceased family member and might touch or gently pick up the bones  ○ Elephants seem to be owed some level of respect  ○ What problems generate the crisis here? ■ We’re not sure how elephant reproduction cycles  work? Hot season, wet season? Doesn’t seem to influence their  reproduction for elephants… They reproduce at a very steady rate  regardless of how many resources are available ■ Very little elephants get killed, hard to hunt, difficult  for a sickness to kill them, what kept their population in check historically? ■ “Island” preserves, less and less space available,  they will break through and go in the direction they want ■ More humans → more confrontations that often don’t end well (they come through on their ancient route and rip up large portions of a crop) ■ Migrating by nature, won’t stay in one spot all year ■ They shape the environment around them, use up  all available resources and then move onto the next hot spot  ■ Less room to migrate means that they impact the  local environment more because they can’t move onto the next space  ■ When resources become scarce, their behaviors  become more destructive  ○ What are the options ■ Culling (hunting maybe? Sell a number of permits) ■ Translocate ■ Contraceptives ■ Expand their territory ■ Bring in food for them ■ Combo of the options  ■ Integrate elephants into the community in some  better way  ○ Often the problem is that any solution would be very expensive  ○ Elephant management options ■ Culling → keep them at target population, and what does target population mean? ■ Range extension → money and delays ■ Contraceptives → expensive ■ Let them be (let them starve after destroying their  local environment)  ■ Better integrate them into society  ■ Translocation → very expensive, elephants might just return to their home range, moving the problem to another location ■ Give them food ● #2 Taylor Biocentric ○ Biocentric → if an individual has biological needs, then it has moral standing ■ Mental state theory is incorrect (a cat may  desire to go outside but we know it has an interest in staying inside  in order to keep it safe) ■ Intuitions about which type of world is better (a beautiful one, flourishing with plants vs a ball of rock) → this “argument” isn’t a very strong one, it’s kind of a personal opinion ○ He argues that we are one species among others. The  survival of species is highly dependent on many other species (very  interconnected). He says you can’t prove egalitarianism, but it fits in with  doctrines ○ There’s no reason to favor destructive species over benign  ones, parasites over others, invasive species in his theory.  ○ This theory doesn’t fit what environmentalists want, but  environmental philosophy isn’t meant to fit the desires of environmentalists ● #1 Sagoff and the tension between environmentalism and welfare of  individual animals ○ We could possibly care about both but their interests would come  into tension at times  ○ A Singer­inspired environmentalist argument:  (1) Currently existing and future individual sentient animals will be  made most happy if people work to preserve their environments  (2) The right action is the one that produces the most happiness  (3) Conclusion: so we ought to preserve the environment  ● If we pollute everything then there won’t be safe places for future  people (and animals) to live healthy, happy lives  ○ Nature isn’t all beauty, it’s actually brutal in a lot of ways  ○ Sagoff argues against this since even healthy ecosystems are  violent places. Many animals are just barely keeping themselves from starving.  Some predators are incredible inhumane in the way they treat their prey ○ Sagoff suggests that, if we are interested in the happiness of all  sentient creatures, then we could turn the world into a giant petting zoo (keeping  predators separated from prey and feed them). This would be the best way to  reduce suffering. This doesn’t seem feasible.  ○ there is a tension between holism (environmental ethics) and  individualism 


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