A Problem About PreferenceSkip other details (including permanent urls, DOI, citation information)
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Obligation describing language (here: “ought”) is hooked up with preference, a relation of what-is-better-than-what. But ordinary situations underdetermine such relations of what-is-better-than-what. Even so, there are plainly true sentences describing our obligations in those situations. This mismatch is trouble-making and getting out of the trouble requires either giving up the easy link between “ought” and preference or re-thinking the kind of things preferences can be.