Does the Additional Worth-Having Existence Make Things Better? [post]

Melinda A. Roberts
2021 unpublished
Let's call the principle that says that the mere addition of the worth-having existence (other things equal) makes things morally better Pareto plus. If we accept Pareto plus, then it seems we should also say that some additions that make at least some person at least a little worse off also may – depending on the numbers – make things morally better. I find that latter claim potentially dangerous. As a main focus of an argument why we ought to do something about climate change, I think it
more » ... people not to do anything much about climate change. People won't accept that they or their progeny – or the many, many future people beyond their own progeny – should bear a cost, perhaps a significant cost, just to bring ever more future people into existence. But we can't just reject Pareto plus out of hand. For a number of arguments seem to compel us to accept Pareto plus. My goal in this paper is to identify some of the most interesting of those arguments and to show how, in each case, the argument on closer analysis fails.
doi:10.31235/ fatcat:7wu4zkyefnhmrh2is3ttmoa2ym