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  • Virtuous Behaviors Sanction Later Sins

    By Ashley Welch, Scientific American Anyone who has ever devoured a triple-chocolate brownie after an intense workout knows how tempting it can be to indulge after behaving virtuously. A new study suggests, however, that we often apply this thought process to inappropriate scenarios, giving ourselves...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • The Future of Moral Machines

    By Colin Allen, New York Times A robot walks into a bar and says, “I’ll have a screwdriver.” A bad joke, indeed. But even less funny if the robot says “Give me what’s in your cash register.” The fictional theme of robots turning against humans is older than the word itself, which first appeared in the...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • Moral Dilemma: Would You Kill One Person to Save Five?

    From Science Daily Imagine a runaway boxcar heading toward five people who can't escape its path. Now imagine you had the power to reroute the boxcar onto different tracks with only one person along that route. Would you do it? That's the moral dilemma posed by a team of Michigan State University...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • Moral Choice or Tug of War?

    The Vexing Mental Tug-of-War Called Morality By Kristin Ohlson, Discover magazine Would you kill a crying baby to save yourself and others from hostile soldiers outside? Neuroscience offers new ways to approach such moral questions, allowing logic to triumph over deep-rooted instinct. You arrive at the...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • Nice Guys Finish First

    By David Brooks, The New York Times The story of evolution, we have been told, is the story of the survival of the fittest. The strong eat the weak. The creatures that adapt to the environment pass on their selfish genes. Those that do not become extinct. In this telling, we humans are like all other...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • Mein Data, Did Any Useful Science Come Out of the Nazi Concentration Camps?

    By Brian Palmer from Slate "Leaving aside the question of medical ethics, did any useful science ever come out of Nazi experiments on unwilling subjects? Very little. Concentration camp doctors conducted research on vaccines, antibiotics, fertility, transplantation, and eugenics. The majority of...
     Posted by: cait
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