Good lives and un/conditional value

At the recent MANCEPT workshops I had some fun discussions with a couple of defenders of the idea that, while we've reason to improve the lives of people who exist, there's no reason to bring
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At the recent MANCEPT workshops I had some fun discussions with a couple of defenders of the idea that, while we've reason to improve the lives of people who exist, there's no reason to bring awesome lives into existence.  (As Johann Frick put it in his very interesting paper, "our reasons to confer well-being on people are conditional on their existence.")This strikes me as a rather bleak, depressing view of the value of life.  Johann compares welfare to promise-keeping: there's no value in making-and-keeping promises, it's just that once you've made a promise, you'd better not mess it up.  Likewise, it seems on these views, there's no real value in good lives, just the risk of their going badly which needs to be avoided.I think the big worry with these kinds of views is the seemingly unavoidable conclusion that sentient life, as a whole, is regrettable.  If God creates a world with a billion blissful, flourishing lives, and one (antecedently. . .

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