We are nominalists, so we can’t know where true virtue lies; indeed, as nominalists, we are sure that it does not lie in any real particulars; so that, really, it does not lie anywhere, at all. Still, we find that we are compelled for reasons native in and obscure to us to adhere to some notion of virtue or other, even though we feel sure that there is no such thing as virtue in reality. So, to satisfy that compulsion, we will now and henceforth *signal* virtue, as our forebears did – albeit, without any ugly untoward recollection of the really appurtenant deontological distinctions among men & their acts that our fathers drew between virtue and vice. All our moral evaluations are pretenses. But, to save our appearances, we shall pretend that they are not.
Our pretence prescinds its pretence.
So, and despite all the foregoing – which might lead to an appearance of pretence or uncertainty on our part – we utterly condemn all those who have not volubly vouchsafed their adherence to … the stuff that we these days adhere to.
We shall *act* as though we understand what it is to act badly.