Political Science | Ethics & Public Policy
Y379 | 27849 | Failer


This class focuses on three important questions at the intersection
of ethics and public policy.  First, which morally problematic means
are justified in pursuing valuable political ends?  Second, what
should the ends of public policy be?  Third, what are the moral
responsibilities of public officials when they try to answer the
first two questions?  We will begin each week by evaluating the
theoretical answers to these questions on their own terms.  In the
next session, we will apply the principles derived from ethical
theory to concrete cases in public policy.  We will also use the
cases to test the adequacy of the ethical theory.   Among the cases
we may study include: dropping the bomb over Hiroshima, the Iran-
Contra Affair, air pollution and health risks,  commercial surrogacy,
religion in the public schools, and whistle-blowing.  Each student
will be responsible for writing one paper, making one oral
presentation, and passing both the midterm and final examination
(both essay examinations).