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24.7.01

I think I need some clarification of that last post, since nobody ever seems to understand what I mean (I've made this argument elsewhere before).

We often use "evil" to mean "very wrong." But in a philosophical context, I use "evil" and "wrong" to describe two different concepts. Acts can be right, wrong, or neutral (in various combinations of various degrees of those elements), depending on their contribution toward the ultimate goal of the most net benefit for the most people for the longest period of time. Motivations can be good, evil, or selfish (in various combinations of various degrees of those elements). An act is good to the extent that its rightness makes it more attractive to the actor. An act is evil to the extent that its wrongness makes it more attractive. And an act is selfish to the extent that its benefit to the actor (regardless of whether it is right or wrong) makes it more attractive.

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