Decision making

wil

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Here are 7 “friends” we can consult

“The Golden Rule”
Long before Jesus, the principle of “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” has helped bring empathy into the pursuit of justice. The principle here is simply to as what my actions would feel like if they were done to me. Some philosophers have balanced the Golden Rule with another important maxim: “Do unto others as THEY would have you do unto them.”

Gandhi’s “Talisman”
Mohandas Gandhi offered the following litmus test for ethical actions: "Recall the face of the poorest and the weakest person whom you may have seen, and ask yourself, if the step you contemplate is going to be of any use to them."

The Iroquois “Seventh Generation Principle”
Some people believe Iroquois leaders had a test for their decisions- to ask what those decisions would mean seven generations from now. Whether there was this exact rule ever really existed, it is clear that ecological sustainability was practiced by many of America’s original people, and would be a very valuable litmus test for ALL of us today.

Ingersoll’s “Universal Scale”
The atheist Robert Green Ingersoll provided one of the most helpful scales for testing whether our actions are just. “This is my doctrine: Give every other human being every right you claim for yourself.”

Rawl’s “Veil of Ignorance”
Ethicist John Rawls proposed a thought experiment where we are trying to design a society of free and equal people. His suggestion was to imagine designing that society from behind a veil of ignorance where we did not know what our race, gender, abilities or economic conditions will be. Under those condition, we might very well seek to be just to every member of the society, simply because we would not know which role we would be holding.

Kant’s “Categorical Imperative”
Immanuel Kant’s great imperative was to. “Act only according to that maxim by which you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law.” In other words ask, “what if everybody did this?” In application, Kant also proposed that we treat every person as an ends rather than a means.

Tillich’s “First Duty”
Paul Tillich understood Justice as a relationship, not as a abstracted set of rules. He said, “In order to know what is just in a person-to-person encounter, love listens. It is its first task to listen.” As we go into the voting booth today, may we listen to the cries for justice coming from all over the world.
 

Thomas

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Good rules.

Here's Tony Benn's Five Essential Questions to ask anyone standing for office:

“What power have you got?”
“Where did you get it from?”
“In whose interests do you use it?”
“To whom are you accountable?”
“How do we get rid of you?”

(Tony Benn renounced his inherited title [2nd Viscount Stansgate] to serve in the House of Commons declaring: “I am not a reluctant peer but a persistent commoner”. Benn championed empowering socialism, battling not just the Conservative Party but the spirit of compromise in his own Labour Party. An internationally-renowned campaigner against military conflict and injustice in all its forms.)
 
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wil

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Here's Tony Benn's Five Essential Questions to ask anyone standing for office:
King Arthur: I am your king.
Peasant Woman: Well, I didn't vote for you.
King Arthur: You don't vote for kings.
Peasant Woman: Well, how'd you become king, then?
[Angelic music plays... ]
King Arthur: The Lady of the Lake, her arm clad in the purest shimmering samite, held aloft Excalibur from the bosom of the water, signifying by divine providence that I, Arthur, was to carry Excalibur. That is why I am your king.
Dennis the Peasant: Listen. Strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.
Arthur: Be quiet!
Dennis the Peasant: You can't expect to wield supreme power just 'cause some watery tart threw a sword at you!
 

wil

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(Tony Benn renounced his inherited title [2nd Viscount Stansgate] to serve in the House of Commons declaring: “I am not a reluctant peer but a persistent commoner”. Benn championed empowering socialism, battling not just the Conservative Party but the spirit of compromise in his own Labour Party. An internationally-renowned campaigner against military conflict and injustice in all its forms.)
I think I like this guy
 
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