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By D. M. Armstrong

During this very important research D. M. Armstrong deals a complete method of analytical metaphysics that synthesizes but in addition develops his pondering over the last two decades. Armstrong's research, which recognizes the "logical atomism" of Russell and Wittgenstein, makes evidence (or states of affairs, because the writer calls them) the basic parts of the realm, analyzing homes, kinfolk, numbers, periods, threat and necessity, tendencies, reasons and legislation. it is going to entice a large readership in analytical philosophy.

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It tastes truly awful, however. ” It surely won’t do to reply: “Are you deaf? ” We can give more advice: we can say what the case presumably warrants saying, namely that he ought to take the medicine. Similarly for cases in which what is good for one is bad for another. Suppose that Alfred’s paying Bertha five dollars would be good for Bertha but bad for Alfred. Alfred asks whether he ought to pay Bertha five dollars. A proponent of the Multiple Ambiguity Idea says that the only advice we are in a position to give him is that in the ‘oughtgoodness for Bertha’ sense of “ought” Alfred ought to pay Bertha, whereas in the ‘oughtgoodness for Alfred’ sense of “ought,” it is not the case that Alfred ought to pay Bertha.

And A’s V-ing can’t be just better than A’s X-ing, or A’s Y-ing, or A’s Z-ing: it can at best be better than those in this or that way or ways. These considerations might tempt one to agree with those who say that the word “ought” is at least three ways ambiguous. On any view, the word “ought” is at least two ways ambiguous. We say “The train ought to arrive by 3:00,” and when we do, we are not saying about the train what we say about Alfred when we say he ought to drink some hot lemonade. What we say about the train is roughly that the train may be expected to arrive by 3:00; what we say about Alfred is roughly that it is advisable that he drink some hot lemonade.

Perhaps a Consequentialist should therefore opt for the following idea about goodness: one event is better than another if and only if the first is ‘more better for more’ than the other. Consider again the event that consists in my team’s winning its game with yours. “That’s good,” I say. “That’s bad,” you say. I asked: which of us is right? Perhaps the answer to this question is to be found out by finding out how many people the event is good for and how many it is bad for, and how good it is for those it is good for, and how bad it is for those it is bad for—the answer to the question being an appropriate function of those facts.

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