What began as an evaluation of Haidt's opinion on morality and Burqa regulation in France on website Camels With Hammers, has evolved into a discussion between myself and long-time friend and Camels with Hammers site owner, Dan Fincke, on possible ways to evaluate moral systems. Can impartial logic determine what moral or ethical system is best? Ultimately, is there such a thing as "better" when it comes to traditional moral systems?
Below is an excerpt followed by a link to the full discussion:
I think Tyler and I are quite close in our thinking here. I think that when Tyler defines morality as “the judgment of human character” and its identifies the key criterion by which to judge human character to be “what is human excellence,” he is agreeing more with me and with the traidtions of Aristotle, Nietzsche, and (most recently) Thomas Hurka and not necessarily with Jonathan Haidt.
Here’s why. There is a difference between holding morality to be a good unto itself on the one hand and on the other hand to see it as inherently instrumental to our flourishing and as only partially constitutive of our fundamental ethical good. In other words, you can define morality in such a way that its interests do not necessarily line up with our material success or our excellence in all our powers. For example, one might conceive of morality as Kant does, whereby morality is narrowly defined as being concerned only with our autonomy, rationality, and our ability to have a dutiful will that does the good only because it is the good. For Kant, we act morally as long as we sufficiently realize our rational nature. And realizing our rational nature in actions means only that we act according to principles which we could consistently recommend that every other rational agent follow as well.
Read more with my latest comment