Neil Sinhababu's philosophy blog ‡ neiladri, at gmail dot com ‡ political blogging at Donkeylicious
I like the idea of a "gunman" theory of motivation. It could be made as a refinement of a Hobbesian view, or perhaps of John Austin's (the legal theorist, not the ordinary language philosopher) view. You could hold that a "pure" case of motivation is what you do when threatened by a gunman, and that all other cases are less pure or problematic insofar as they move away from that characteristic case. It wouldn't be obviously more absurd than many theories of motivation, I'd think.
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