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By J. N. Findlay

. 1970, 94pp

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The omission of a positively good act is allowable, of a correct act positively bad, whereas the omission of an allowable act is positively good, and the omission of a bad act merely correct. Meinong further determines the goodness or badness of acts in terms of the extent to which altruism, regard for others, triumphs over self-interest. To be willing to make large sacrifices of self-interest for relatively small benefits to others has, for example, high positive goodness, provided it does not 'go to far', whereas moral evil is shown in the relatively large sacrifice of advantage to others for only a small advantage to oneself, or, more saliently, in the largeness of the personal sacrifice one is prepared to make for even a relatively small damage to others.

9-3°)· The doctrine with which the name of Ross is mainly associated is that of prima facie rightness or prima facie duty. On that view, what we ought to do on a given occasion is always the outcome of a number of distinct 'claims' upon us, each of which would become our full-fledged duty if it were the only claim in the field. Some of these claims are axiological and are rooted in different values and disvalues that we recognise and of which we feel the attraction or repulsion.

Correct acts cover a small spectrum and pass over into positively good acts which are capable of indefinite degrees of goodness: allowable acts, likewise, cover a small spectrum and shade over into bad acts which are likewise capable of indefinite degrees. The omission of a positively good act is allowable, of a correct act positively bad, whereas the omission of an allowable act is positively good, and the omission of a bad act merely correct. Meinong further determines the goodness or badness of acts in terms of the extent to which altruism, regard for others, triumphs over self-interest.

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