“The Thing To Do” Implies “Can”

Noûs 50 (1):61-72 (2016)
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Abstract
A familiar complaint against the principle that “ought” implies “can” is that it seems that agents can intentionally make it the case that they cannot perform acts that they nonetheless ought to perform. I propose a related principle that I call the principle that “the thing to do” implies “can.” I argue that the principle that “the thing to do” implies “can” is implied by important but underappreciated truths about practical reason, and that it is not vulnerable to the familiar complaint against “ought” implies “can.” Moreover, I suggest that “the thing to do” implies “can” has interesting implications for “ought” implies “can” - implications that depend on the relation between claims about what we ought to do and claims about the thing to do.
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Archival date: 2015-11-21
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References found in this work BETA
The Sources of Normativity.Korsgaard, Christine M.
Thinking How to Live.Gibbard, Allan
Why Be Rational?Kolodny, Niko

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Citations of this work BETA
"Actual" Does Not Imply "Feasible".Southwood, Nicholas & Wiens, David
The Feasibility Issue.Southwood, Nicholas
Against Some Recent Arguments for ‘Ought’ Implies ‘Can’: Reasons, Deliberation, Trying, and Furniture.Henne, Paul; Semler, Jennifer; Chituc, Vladimir; De Brigard, Felipe & Sinnott-Armstrong, Walter

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