Five or One?

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Ddrak
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Five or One?

Post by Ddrak » Fri Jul 11, 2008 4:05 am

Hypothetical time!

i) You're hiking in the woods. You see a runaway train hurtling down the track towards five hikers. By switching a lever you can move the train to a track that a single hiker is following. Do you kill one to save five?

ii) You're a doctor. Five people are going to die if they don't get (different) organ transplants. A healthy person walks through the door. Do you kill one to save five?

If you answered differently, why?

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Re: Five or One?

Post by Fallakin Kuvari » Fri Jul 11, 2008 6:33 am

I'd let natural selection take place.
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Taxious » Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:03 am

Ddrak wrote:i) You're hiking in the woods. You see a runaway train hurtling down the track towards five hikers. By switching a lever you can move the train to a track that a single hiker is following. Do you kill one to save five?
I'd flip the lever and save the five.
Ddrak wrote:ii) You're a doctor. Five people are going to die if they don't get (different) organ transplants. A healthy person walks through the door. Do you kill one to save five?
This one is a little trickier for me. I see where you are going with the whole "the two situations are essentially the same" but it would be hard for me to actively kill someone. I guess I would ask the healthy person walking in if they want to sacrifice themselves, and if not, just let the other five people die.
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Harlowe » Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:16 am

Hypothetically? If it came down to me choosing one life over another (that doesn't involve a loved one or family member) I'd let the fates decide. I don't want to decide who lives and who dies.

With regard to the train, who knows who I am saving and who I am killing. I can't know, so I wouldn't choose.

With regard to the organs? Why kill a healthy person to save unhealthy people? We all die at some point. Some people are blessed with healthier organs or live healthier lives, you shouldn't kill a healthy person to save some sick people, that makes no sense.

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Re: Five or One?

Post by Taxious » Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:28 am

Harlowe wrote:I don't want to decide who lives and who dies.
With regard to the train, who knows who I am saving and who I am killing. I can't know, so I wouldn't choose.
By saying "who knows who I am saving and who I am killing" aren't you making a judgment call all in itself that some people are not worth saving?

It just seems odd that you would rather watch 5/6 random people die compared to 1/6 random people.
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Partha » Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:35 am

1 - flip the switch.

2 - no chance in hell. The likelihood of that one person's organs matching the five patients is nil. At most you might save two, if you're lucky. If you're unlucky, everyone dies, and that's not enough to pull the trigger on the healthy guy.
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Klast Brell » Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:55 am

This is from a study that was dome academically. They included variations on the theme to determine where people would draw the line. Would you pull the lever? Would you push the guy in front of the train to get the train to stop?
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Embar Angylwrath » Fri Jul 11, 2008 11:01 am

I'd let the train hit the five hikers. Fuckers should know better than to hike on the train tracks. Nor would I kill the healthy guy to harvest organs. People make choices, and sometimes they live and die by those choices.
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Harlowe » Fri Jul 11, 2008 7:10 pm

If I could save all of them by doing something, maybe risking my own life, sure - if I had the courage to do that, but I couldn't make the call. What if that one person was a kid and the 5 were adults? You going to kill a child to save some adults?

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Re: Five or One?

Post by Select » Fri Jul 11, 2008 7:31 pm

1) It's not my place to decide. I would watch with horror as the train hit whoever.

2) I find this question to be incredibly stupid. In our society, killing someone to harvest their organs is pretty foul. It would land anyone a fantastic sentence in jail and in some states, possibly the death penalty. I doubt many doctors would even have this possibility come to mind.

Now if this question is saying the situation takes place in a society where a doctor would actually consider harvesting another person's organs would not face any consequences... I still would do what ANY decent doctor would do and put the five on the waiting list for organs. I would then ignore the healthy person unless he is a relative or caregiver of one of my patients.
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Ddrak » Fri Jul 11, 2008 7:36 pm

Klast Brell wrote:This is from a study that was dome academically. They included variations on the theme to determine where people would draw the line. Would you pull the lever? Would you push the guy in front of the train to get the train to stop?
Yep, I found it pretty interesting. Was part of a bigger theory on whether there was an evolutionary bias towards altruism, rather than selfishness.

The questions are supposed to be straight up morality checks - under what situations is it moral to make a decision that kills a smaller number of people to save a larger number, and what is the *actual* difference between the situations.

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Re: Five or One?

Post by Garrdor » Sun Jul 13, 2008 10:14 am

1. First of all, I'd not even think about using the lever at all.

The train would do my dirty work for me. 5 more mouths to feed, 5 more people to drop candy-bar wrappers on the sidewalk - down the drain.

Though, I would have to break the lever off and use it as a blunt object to beat the other person to death.

2. This one is a bit different. If I were the doctor, I'd harvest ALL of the salvageable organs from the dying people - I mean, after abducting them/sedating them in my basement. I'd then sell them to the highest bidder, and all other unwanted organic material would probably end up under a fallen tree... covered in Lye, and completely dissolved within a few days.
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Embar Angylwrath » Sun Jul 13, 2008 8:46 pm

I would like to change my solution.

I would throw Garrdor on the tracks, which is a guaranteed derail, thus saving both parties, and providing at least one corpse for organ harvesting.
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Garrdor » Mon Jul 14, 2008 10:31 am

Embar Angylwrath wrote:I would like to change my solution.

I would throw Garrdor on the tracks, which is a guaranteed derail, thus saving both parties, and providing at least one corpse for organ harvesting.
All you're doing is pumping up my net ego :-p

That being said,

HOF THAT QUOTE RIGHT NOW
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Tarfang_Trubasher » Mon Jul 14, 2008 10:42 am

1 - Is this question as simple as "Flip / Don't Flip?" It seems I could not flip the switch, and yell to the 5 people to GTFO the tracks (who hikes ON train tracks, really? Go go Darwin!) Also, by switching the train, that could put it on a different course, allowing it to collide, unexpectedly with another train, possibly causing more damage. Also, are we to assume that these people won't hear/see the train in time to scatter? If it's only Flip or Don't flip -- guess I'm a don't flip.

2 - No, we don't kill one for the sake of 5. Partha mentioned organ "compatibility," which would be a scientific answer. The morality of the act could/should be considered from a theological standpoint. The other spot to consider is, were these 5 people hit by a train while hiking? :lol:

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Re: Five or One?

Post by Rsak » Mon Jul 14, 2008 2:55 pm

I think there is validity in the study, but these examples are just worded badly. They don't actually force you to choose.

The first question ignores the ability of the hikers to listen and watch for themselves. Where are their brains when they see train tracks in the middle of the woods and decide to look both ways before crossing.

The second does not explain whether the organs are compatible or even whether the removal of the organs would actually kill the healthy person.

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Re: Five or One?

Post by Select » Tue Jul 15, 2008 7:10 am

A healthy person walks through the door. Do you kill one to save five?
Rsak, it's worded that your option is to kill the person. No one has six kidneys. :roll:
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Re: Five or One?

Post by Mukik » Tue Jul 15, 2008 8:41 am

I wouldnt do shit, none of them are dirty pirate hookers

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Re: Five or One?

Post by Freecare Spiritwise » Thu Aug 14, 2008 5:57 pm

You're at the beach, and two people are drowning. One is your son, and one has the cure for cancer, but you can only save one.
Which person do you save?

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Re: Five or One?

Post by Embar Angylwrath » Thu Aug 14, 2008 6:27 pm

I save my son. My son is unique.. someone else will eventually find the same cure for cancer. Oh.. and I hope that the son I'm saving is the same person who found the cure for cancer.

Unless my son is Garrdor. Then I throw chum in the water by my son, and Select too, since if the sharks don't finish him off, he'll commit suicide rather than listen to her blathering. Then I save the person who has the cure for cancer, which just so happens to be a 5'9" gorgeous female volleyball player with an ass you can cut diamonds on, who of course is eternally gratefull (as is her twin sister).
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