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If viable, DER justifies certain individual acts that–by definition–have two effects. Presumably, it would in some fashion (at the very least, redundantly) justify policies concerning the very same acts. By contrast, acts that sometimes have a good effect and sometimes have a bad effect do not have the requisite two effects such that DER can justify them immediately. Yet, a policy concerning numerous such acts would have the requisite good and bad effects. For while any one such act would lack the relevant two effects, a series of such acts and a policy governing such a series would have them. This paper addresses DER’s justification of policies that apply to such acts. It shows that there are certain acts which DER mediately justifies by justifying policies (having the requisite two effects) concerning them. Thus, it recommends the larger topic of DER’s bearing on policy.


Pre-publication penultimate draft forthcoming 2015 in American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly, special issue devoted to Double-effect Reasoning, edited by John Zeis

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