The Principle of Utility

“The greatest good for the greatest number.”

In the television show, ‘Scandal’, the President of the United States may be forced to resign his position after being accused of extramarital affairs. Unbeknownst to the American public, the POTUS is in fact in love with the former press secretary of the White House, main character Olivia Pope. As rumors swirl about possible impeachment, the President decides to admit to his indiscretions and officially resign so that he can divorce his wife and be happy with Olivia. Olivia, who is in love with the President as well, considers his resignation and their possible life together, but then realizes that she must sacrifice her love and happiness for the sake of the American people. These scenes spoke volumes about the principle of utility and the sacrifices and agenda setting that all parties involved made for the President to stay in office.

• Regular People – clip–grant-for-the-people/regular-people

• First Lady Sacrifices – clip

• Go Be the Man I Voted For – clip• Regular People – clip


One thought on “The Principle of Utility

  1. In the same episode of ‘Scandal’, another character who is the White House Chief of Staff, Cyrus Beene, speaks to Olivia outside of the Oval Office following her first conversation with the President about ‘regular people’. Cyrus says something to Olivia that shifts her perception about the outlook on her future with the President. The quote, which I unfortunately cannot find online is this:
    “Some men aren’t meant to be happy. They’re meant to be great.” No truer words have been said about the principle of utility.

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