James Leroy Wilson's blog

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Altruism or Selfishness?

This is my latest at the Partial Observer. Excerpt:
Under pure altruism, a mother should be able to sacrifice the wants of her own children to dedicate her life to running an orphanage. She could just add her children to the number of residents, but give them no additional care or attention because that would be "unfair" to the orphans. This is altruism at its finest, is it not? Love everybody equally.
It turns out, however, that human beings do not live for the hive, for the collective. Our wants and loves are personal and subjective, not universal and objective. Constant self-sacrifice for the "good" of others is self-defeating, and coerced self-sacrifice means a downward spiral.

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