chapter  Chapter 8
Impermissible Means
WithJohn Kleinig
Pages 12

In an earlier chapter, we argued that means are not evaluable only in relation to the ends toward which they are directed, but may have intrinsic (dis)value. This chapter considers the possibility that there are certain means (such as torture or use of the third degree) that—at least in a liberal democracy—are morally impermissible, no matter what the ends to which they are directed. Some attention is paid to the “ticking bomb argument,” and to whether it can be employed to permit extreme measures in the pursuit of acknowledged goods (say, the thwarting of terrorist acts).