Second, there seem to be very different evaluations of what 'human good' consists in, and men do differ about what final happiness or well-being consists in. Third, it is not totally clear that human well-being is the point of morality, in any case; it is certainly true that many moralists have rigorously opposed moral considerations to those of prudence, and would regard as perverse
ss any attempts to found moral codes on an ultimate appeal to prudence. Fourth, one may well have to introduce irreducibly moral considerations before one would admit some otherwise desired state to be a 'human good' ; for it may be that the things which an evil man desires may yet be things for which he ought not to strive. And fifth, the force of Hume's point remains undiminished, in the case of empirical facts at least-that no mere statement of existence can entail a statement about what ought to be done. 2
Modern naturalist arguments often try to counter this point by appealing to the fact that words like 'courageous' and, greedy' have clear criteria for application in a given society; thus in the application of these terms, factual and evaluative considerations cannot be distinguished; the facts already have moral import. 3 But, after all, this is only to say that one builds the values one has-the ways in which one values things-into the terminology for describing those things. This does not by any means show that there is no distinction here between facts-which are taken to exist independently of human minds-and values-which are, for subjectivist views, imputed by human minds; for a man in the very same culture may choose a different word for the very same fact, simply because he evaluates it differently. Thus one may say, 'That was not courageous; it was foolhardy.' One thereby accepts the evaluative implications of these terms, but differs over their application. Equally, one may doubt whether 'courage' is a good thing, even though one accepts that a man is indisputably courageous on the agreed social criteria. Here one accepts the empirical criteria for applying the concept but disputes the commendation of the disposition in question. In a complex, plural society, differences of desire and evaluation are so marked that one seems forced to say that, in such cases, while the factual criteria cannot be in dispute, the application of partially evaluative terms will vary widely; and this in itself corroborates the distinguishing of factual and evaluative considerations. Naturalism inevitably leads back to the subjective relativism it was attempting to escape, for the facts are simply not determined regardless of human approvals and evaluations.