by Thomas Rodham Wells
Do you want to be a good person but find yourself always falling short?
It may not be your fault. These days it is difficult to feel like good person. In fact the more you try, the more you may feel like a failure. Thanks to egalitarianism, globalisation, activist NGOs, the internet and over-active moral philosophers the calls on our moral attention are multiplying at an absurd rate.
Everywhere we turn there are people demanding that we take moral responsibility for ever more features of our lives and the implications of our actions. Almost everything we do turns out to be involve a moral choice, or more than one, in which our deepest principles are at stake. If you're an egalitarian, how come you help your kids with their homework? If you're against child-slavery, how come you still eat chocolate? If you're against racism, how come you enjoy ‘white privileges' like not being afraid when the police pull you over? And so on. Want to put milk on your breakfast cereal? There's a moral philosopher out there who wants you to read about murdered baby cows first.
Enough! These demands would challenge the forbearance and commitment of a saint. Trying to satsify them all would leave no room for getting on with your own life.
But it gets worse. Although they are presented as moral challenges, as tests of your principles, many of these demands are actually moral puzzles with no right answer. Flying to England to visit your sick grandmother, perhaps for the last time, is absolutely the right thing to do, but it's also absolutely the wrong thing to do if you care about the environment and justice for future generations.
You just can't win no matter how hard you try!
The rising tide of moralisation has been rather more successful in making us feel constantly guilty about everything we do than in inspiring us to live morally better lives. And this is not surprising since it demands that we take on the burden of extended moral responsibility – for the well-being of children in Cote d'Ivoire, for future generations, for the survival of rare species, and so on – without giving us the tools we need to manage that responsibility. Unfortunately feeling guilty all the time is morally debilitating. It undermines our ability and motivation to make good moral decisions in the first place.
If everything we do is wrong, why bother to even try to do the right thing?
Fortunately the solution is at hand. Here at Moral Tranquillity plc we believe that good people should be able to live a life free from guilt. That's why we have developed a range of Moral Offsetting™ products that make meeting your moral responsibilities simple and affordable.
The Consumer Ethics Package
For only $19.99 per month we will scan every purchase you make according to its GoodGuide rating and a proprietary algorithm generated from your personal ethical preferences. Whenever you purchase something that is unethical according to your values we will automatically make a donation of 2% of the purchase price (or other amount selected by you) from your bank account to a charity selected by GiveWell as the most efficient way to benefit humanity.
Add-ons – available for an extra $5 per month:
Instead of all your Moral Offsets coming from helping humanity in general, they will be tailored to the underlying bad. For example, carbon offsetting for your long-distance flights; donations to African children's charities for your consumption of chocolate; animal welfare charities for your vegan lapses.
*Moral preferences presets
If you do not wish to design your own schedule of moral preferences you may elect to follow one of our Moral Leaders™. That means your consumption patterns will be assessed against the carefully selected criteria of one of the many religious gurus, activist organisations and unemployed moral philosophy PhDs who work with us.
*Family members ($5 each)
Want to ensure the moral integrity of your loved ones? Add them to your Moral Offsetting™ plan. You may select a schedule of moral preferences on their behalf.
Moral Offsetting for your pets.
The full-life package
For just $49.99 per month we offer a concierge service that covers your whole life, not just what you buy.
How it works:
You opt for a moral doctrine. When you suspect you have done something bad, like saying something really mean to a friend of a friend at a party or firing an employee because someone in India will do his job for less, you call or email one of our trained ‘confessors'. The confessor determines an appropriate offset according to your professed moral doctrine and makes the relevant arrangements, such as sending flowers and a handwritten apology to the person you were mean to, or a $100 donation to a soup-kitchen in your ex-employee's neighbourhood.
This Christmas, give the gift of a blameless life to someone you love
We all have friends or relatives who could do better. Moral Offsetting™ makes an excellent gift and is available in a range of attractive colours and fonts.
The Moral Offsetting™ Guarantee
Whenever you fall short of your best intentions our service automatically ensures that you have already more than made up for it. Our Moral Offsetting™ packages provide you with all the assurance you need to feel like a good person because we guarantee to make you one.
This infomercial was produced by Moral Tranquillity plc, reputable sellers of indulgences since 1500. As part of our own commitment to making the world a better place 10% of our profits go to providing homes and library carrels for unemployed moral philosophy phds.