Michael Moore’s 2009 book Causation and Responsibility is a landmark work on causation and the law. In it he defends a thesis that seems highly intuitive, namely that there is no such thing as causation by omission. Jonathan Schaffer has offered a compelling rebuttal, the punchline of which is that on Moore’s view beheading is not murder. Yet Moore remains unpersuaded, and many still hold to the position that he defends on omission cases. I propose here to take up Schaffer’s argument and develop it further, arguing in favor of the view that absences can be causes, both metaphysically and in morality and the law.
Walen, Alec D, More Contra Moore on Absences as Causes (October 6, 2020).