Main source: Reasons and persons by
Hedons are happiness points. I use this concept in the examples below.
Total view (most used framework)
You take total sum of each persons hedons.
Repugnant conclusion. Let’s imagine we have a society one at one million people with 99 hedons each. There is also society two. The bar of life worth living is at 10 hedons. People in that society has 11 headons each.
If the second society population is larger than 9 mln it has more hedons than the society one and is a preferable outcome.
Position of a lot of positive psychologist. It’s less about making people happy, but it is about making happy people.
You take an average of hedons of all people.
One life of a person with 100 headons is worth more than 1 million lives of people that all have 99 headons. The average of first is larger.
It makes an immoral act to add live that is below average. Because this action would lower the average of all the group.
It also makes it ethical to kill people that are below average to rise the average.
Questions and draft answers
All philosophers who worked with population ethics claims that it is incredibly hard to solve. Some of it abandoned the discipline. It’s seems to me that there is a way to create a function that the total view doesn’t create a repugnant conclusion.
What if we would put the bar of life worth living very high. Does this mean that policies that creates environemnts that create people at that level are bad? Sure. But it also don’t mean it is moral to get rid of these people – there are still hedons there.
Seems like hedons shouln’t be capped at 100. It reflects a reality better where some people can be potentially very very very happy and there can be large discrepancies between people.