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January 28, 2013 / compassioninpolitics

An overview of debating ethics in policy debate

This is probably a 2 class outline for these concepts). Its possible to handle the material quicker than that, but probably not have much audience participation). I think the value of audience participation is pretty important–so I would attempt to divide this lesson into 2 parts.

I think it could even be 3 classes if you took the section on logic & reasoning as a 2nd class (#8) and perhaps combined it with logical fallacies.

1) Values, goals, and priorities

2) History of Western Political Philosophy (Hobbes, Rousseau, Locke)

3) History of Western Ethical Philosophy (Kant, Bentham, Mill)

4) Historical American Responsibilities (Role Specific via Constitution & Preamble) * If time, perhaps examples of ethics in the public sphere in America

5) Cultural clash & value clash (Romantics versus the Enlightenment)

6) Capitalism, Economics, & Ethics (libertarianism & objectivism versus progressivism, etc..)

7) Meta-conflicts in politics & ethics (individual versus society, freedom versus order, rights versus security, etc..)

8) Reasoning about values (examples, etc..). Where to ethical responsibilities come from?
The nature of reasoning about ethics, law, & politics. What are the building blocks?

9) Relativism debate

10) Value clashes & conflicts

11) Debating ethics & values in debate (practical applications & specific arguments & strategy)

12) Types of Ethics (Responsibility, Rights, Justice/Fairness, Utility/Consequences, Virtue, Environmental Ethics)

1. Social Contract (section to be determined)
2. Utilitarianism chapter in Individual and the Political Order
3. Speeches (link)
4. Evidence commonly used in ethics debate (in fact that could be 12, in the context of application and reflection)

Other related topics. Logical fallacies.


One Comment

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  1. compassioninpolitics / Jan 28 2013 8:45 pm

    The individual and the political order chapter on the Social Contract might also be helpful. It specifically has some interesting indicts of Hobbes.

    Note: I have left Aristotle, Socrates, and Plato off this list.
    Aristotle’s notion of happiness….and Platos concept of the Republic probably both
    deserve to be back in.

    Allegory of the Cave might belong in the arguing about ethics section.

    Overall the concept of the ideal versus the real, has some interesting.

    The map versus the territory might also.

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