Sen eds. Both traditions invoke notions of resonance and harmony to articulate pluralistic structures of connection alongside irreducible differences. We can work out trade-offs between different dimensions of pleasure or happiness. Thus, even though pluralists by definition do not accept one fundamental unifying principle, they are not thereby stuck viewing moral norms as an unconnected heap.
Kekesfor example, claims that pluralism enables us to see that irresolvable disagreements are not due to wickedness on the part of our interlocutor, but may be due to the plural nature of values. In this vein, pluralist moral theorist Bernard Gert offers the following generic account of moral norms: Morality is an informal public system applying to all rational persons, governing behavior that affects others, and has the lessening of evil or harm as its goal.
Political authority and all laws are assumed unjustified until shown otherwise.
According to Stocker these comparisons are not quantitative, they are evaluative: Suppose we are trying to choose between lying on a beach and discussing philosophy—or more particularly, between the pleasure of the former and the gain in understanding from the latter.
Finally, pluralists must explain how comparisons between values are made, or defend the consequence that incommensurability is widespread.
We could say that all of the moral theories discussed in this book are different conceptions of morality, but each of the theorists should share the same concept of morality. He then applies that principle dogmatically to every moral issue.
However, Cohen and I disagree about what a perfectly just society would be like. They might be right!