Sample thesis statement for compare/contrast paper: While both Facebook and MySpace allow you to meet other users who have similar interests, only MySpace allows you to demonstrate your personal style.
(1) that there exists, or can be developed, a 'criterion ofjudgment and system of weighting . . .' that will 'render theincommensurables . . . commensurable . . . ' in real life;
…provide facts, evidence, and statistics to support your position
The rebuttal to the invisible hand in population control is tobe found in a scenario first sketched in a little-known Pamphletin 1833 by a mathematical amateur named William Forster Lloyd(1794-1852). We may well call it "thetragedy of the commons," using the word "tragedy"as the philosopher Whitehead used it :"The essence of dramatic tragedy is not unhappiness. Itresides in the solemnity of the remorseless working ofthings." He then goes on to say, "This inevitablenessof destiny can only be illustrated in terms of human life byincidents which in fact involve unhappiness. For it is only bythem that the futility of escape can be made evident in thedrama."
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Analysis of the pollution problem as a function of populationdensity uncovers a not generally recognized principle ofmorality, namely: Using the commons as a cesspool does notharm the general public under frontier conditions, because thereis no public; the same behavior in a metropolis is unbearable. Ahundred and fifty years ago a plainsman could kill an Americanbison, cut out only the tongue for his dinner, and discard therest of the animal. He was not in any important sense beingwasteful. Today, with only a few thousand bison left, we would beappalled at such behavior.
1. J. B. Wiesner and H. F. York, 211 (No. 4), 27 (1964).
The pollution problem is a consequence of population. It didnot much matter how a lonely American frontiersman disposed ofhis waste. "Flowing water purifies itself every tenmiles," my grandfather used to say, and the myth was nearenough to the truth when he was a boy, for there were not toomany people. But as population became denser, the naturalchemical and biological recycling processes became overloaded,calling for a redefinition of property rights.
4. J. H. Fremlin, No.415 (1964), p. 285.
That morality is system-sensitive escaped the attention ofmost codifiers of ethics in the past. "Thou shaltnot " is the form of traditional ethical directiveswhich make no allowance for particular circumstances. The laws ofour society follow the pattern of ancient ethics, and thereforeare poorly suited to governing a complex, crowded, changeableworld. Our epicyclic solution is to augment statutory law withadministrative law. Since it is practically impossible to spellout all the conditions under which it is safe to burn trash inthe back yard or to run an automobile without smogcontrol, bylaw we delegate the details to bureaus. The result isadministrative law, which is rightly feared for an ancient reason-- --Who shall watch thewatchers themselves? John Adams said that we must have a"government of laws and not men." Bureauadministrators, trying to evaluate the morality of acts in thetotal system, are singularly liable to corruption, producing agovernment by men, not laws.
5. A. Smith, (Modern Library, New York, 1937), p. 423.
In a reverse way, the tragedy of the commons reappears inproblems of pollution. Here it is not a question of takingsomething out of the commons, but of putting something in --sewage, or chemical, radioactive, and heat wastes into water;noxious and dangerous fumes into the air; and distracting andunpleasant advertising signs into the line of sight. Thecalculations of utility are much the same as before. The rationalman finds that his share of the cost of the wastes he dischargesinto the commons is less than the cost of purifying his wastesbefore releasing them. Since this is true for everyone, we arelocked into a system of "fouling our own nest," so longas we behave only as independent, rational, free enterprisers.