Objective Morality
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06-12-2013, 03:19 AM
RE: Objective Morality
While I don't approve of the way in which Taqiyya presents his views, I'm inclined to agree that measurements of different brain states can hardly be used to figure out the well-being of an individual.

well-being
Syllabification: (well-be·ing)
noun
the state of being comfortable, healthy, or happy

I think it goes without saying that the conditions which have to be met for either of these states of being to occur differ wildly from person to person.

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06-12-2013, 08:12 AM
RE: Objective Morality
(06-12-2013 03:19 AM)Vosur Wrote:  While I don't approve of the way in which Taqiyya presents his views, I'm inclined to agree that measurements of different brain states can hardly be used to figure out the well-being of an individual.

well-being
Syllabification: (well-be·ing)
noun
the state of being comfortable, healthy, or happy

I think it goes without saying that the conditions which have to be met for either of these states of being to occur differ wildly from person to person.

Yes because the way Chippy "presents his views" is so much better. Hobo

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06-12-2013, 08:26 AM
RE: Objective Morality
(06-12-2013 08:12 AM)Taqiyya Mockingbird Wrote:  ...
Yes because the way Chippy "presents his views" is so much better. Hobo

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06-12-2013, 10:12 AM
RE: Objective Morality
Yeah, I'm vaguely familiar with Harris' (Harris's?) ideas. I was hoping for a yes or no Shy.

But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.

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06-12-2013, 10:53 AM
RE: Objective Morality
(06-12-2013 10:12 AM)evenheathen Wrote:  Yeah, I'm vaguely familiar with Harris' (Harris's?) ideas.

It's Harris'
=)

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06-12-2013, 12:32 PM
RE: Objective Morality
(05-12-2013 01:06 PM)evenheathen Wrote:  Dude, not everything has to be taken to the most extreme example you can come up with. Most of life is shades of grey.
Just trying to make sense of Chippy's definition of morality.
It seem according to that definition that murder for personal financial gain is moral.
And it also seems that genocide is moral as long as you put negative value on the race of people you are killing. Sure its extreme, but people do these things. It is part of human behaviour.

With regards to my last question, I am trying to establish if you have a moral obligation to adhere to other people's value system (if they represent the majority opinion) even if your own values are different from the majority.

If you want to take it down a notch, from the extreme to the mundane.
According to Chippy's definition, it is a moral choice one has between eating cornflakes or toast for breakfast. If a person values toast more than cornflakes then eating toast would be the moral thing to do.
It also seems that morality becomes situational e.g. although a person might put high value on an icy cool drink on a hot summer's day thus it is moral to drink icy cold drink, however on a cold winters day, it might become immoral to drink icy cold drink but instead moral to drink a hot chocolate, unless of course public majority values coffee more than hot chocolate then coffee would be the moral choice.
"Why did you drink the coffee?"
"Because it was the moral thing to do!"

It means that people can no longer use the alternative phrase.
"Because it was the right thing to do!" because morality no longer has anything to do with right or wrong. It's just about values.
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06-12-2013, 12:52 PM
RE: Objective Morality
(05-12-2013 07:58 PM)DLJ Wrote:  In the mean time, the governance systems we embrace provide a mechanism for balancing stakeholders' needs i.e. negotiating between their different subjective positions.
I'd prefer governance to not have anything to do with morality (regardless if morality means a distinction between right and wrong or merely a values based system).

I don't want government telling mature adults what they can and can't do simply based on a subset group's belief in right and wrong or a subset group's belief in what activities have high value, low value or negative value.

For example, I don't want government of a majority Christian society determining there is low value on homosexuality or that homosexuality is "wrong" and then giving the police force the obligation to use force on people who are gay. This kind of violence is unnecessary and this kind of control over mature members of society is unnecessary for the continued function of society. Each person can determine for themselves whether they value gay sex or think it is right or wrong and then they can make their own choice on how to live their own lives.
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06-12-2013, 01:40 PM (This post was last modified: 09-12-2013 04:06 AM by DLJ.)
RE: Objective Morality
(06-12-2013 12:32 PM)Stevil Wrote:  Just trying to make sense of Chippy's definition of morality.
It seem according to that definition that murder for personal financial gain is moral.
And it also seems that genocide is moral as long as you put negative value on the race of people you are killing. Sure its extreme, but people do these things. It is part of human behaviour.

Yes... subjectively moral. In the way that honour killings are moral in a society that deems it so.
But when measured against an objective scale of 'human suffering' (maybe we can even toy with the idea of pleasure / pain or perhaps harm / care as being an appropriate scale) based on objective evidence (brain activity) the act would be seen as immoral, would it not?

(06-12-2013 12:32 PM)Stevil Wrote:  With regards to my last question, I am trying to establish if you have a moral obligation to adhere to other people's value system (if they represent the majority opinion) even if your own values are different from the majority.

Now that question I like.
I have posted before (eons ago) regarding diversity vs assimilation.

A biological example would say... diversity.
When I go on holiday, I expect to enjoy diversity.
But then, I am not free to break the local laws just because those laws don't apply in the country I came from.
And as I live abroad (and travel a lot) I indeed do assimilate... legally and also culturally to a degree.

In my world of Governance where an organisation needs to get everyone working together for a common purpose, we use slightly different language (as I mentioned in post #83):
"... We don't use the word morality at all because it has more baggage than ethics.

And with regard to ethics, we consider organisation ethics (derived from principles / values) and how they differ from individual ethics (which the organisation cannot control) and how the two combine and are revealed in individual behaviour ... which we need to [be able to] predict and influence ..."

And compliance requirements vary depending on the required balance of:
Benefits Realisation
Risk Optimisation
Resource Optimisation
i.e. there is a requirement to strictly adhere to health and safety policies, to security policies and regulatory (e.g. financial) rules.
But there can also be a 'no blame' policy to encourage innovation.... recognising that the extremist and not the moderate will best facilitate change (as with the biological example where with two fields of crops or two nations, the mingling of genes will only occur at the borders (the extremes) and the middle of the field (or country) will suffer from in-breeding).

So to answer your question, adherence is contextual and not intrinsic.


(06-12-2013 12:32 PM)Stevil Wrote:  It also seems that morality becomes situational e.g. although a person might put high value on an icy cool drink on a hot summer's day thus it is moral to drink icy cold drink, however on a cold winters day, it might become immoral to drink icy cold drink but instead moral to drink a hot chocolate, unless of course public majority values coffee more than hot chocolate then coffee would be the moral choice.
"Why did you drink the coffee?"
"Because it was the moral thing to do!"

Sounds crazy but yes.

Again, in Governance, 'situational' is an oft-heard word but we prefer the words intrinsic and contextual .


(06-12-2013 12:32 PM)Stevil Wrote:  It means that people can no longer use the alternative phrase.
"Because it was the right thing to do!" because morality no longer has anything to do with right or wrong. It's just about values.

Yup, 'good and bad' are contextual and can only really be ascertained once an outcome is known. Likewise 'right or wrong' can only be judged once a framework of principles and policies has been established.


To take it back up a notch...
The massacre of a race of people is good for conformity (or assimilation, if there are any left alive) but not for diversity.
Given that we do not know the outcome of the universe, it could be argued (by cockroaches, rats and bacteria) that eradicating humans is the best thing to do.
Or even that the atrocities of genocide are good because it reminds us not to do it again (until we forget).

I'm beginning to scare myself now, so I'll stop there.

EDIT: I just noticed your last post...
(06-12-2013 12:52 PM)Stevil Wrote:  I'd prefer governance to not have anything to do with morality (regardless if morality means a distinction between right and wrong or merely a values based system).

I don't want government telling mature adults what they can and can't do simply based on a subset group's belief in right and wrong or a subset group's belief in what activities have high value, low value or negative value.
...

Maybe I need to be clearer with my terms.

Governance is the mechanism by which stakeholders needs, conditions and options are evaluated to determine balanced, agreed-upon enterprise objectives blah blah.

Government is that body elected (or not, in a dictatorship or theocracy) to get that job done.

(06-12-2013 12:52 PM)Stevil Wrote:  For example, I don't want government of a majority Christian society determining there is low value on homosexuality or that homosexuality is "wrong" and then giving the police force the obligation to use force on people who are gay.
...

... therefore, church + police (totalitarianism) is undesirable.
I agree.

Wars have been fought over this.

Wink

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06-12-2013, 03:00 PM
RE: Objective Morality
(06-12-2013 01:40 PM)DLJ Wrote:  Yes... subjectively moral. In the way that honour killings are moral in a society that deems it so.
But when measured against an objective scale of 'human suffering' (maybe we can even toy with the idea of pleasure / pain or perhaps harm / care as being an appropriate scale) based on objective evidence (brain activity) the act would be seen as immoral, would it not?
It is a subjective activity to come to a decision on what scale to use.
The only objective scale is that of the governing characteristics of the cosmos. e.g. gravity, speed of light etc. Creating rules as a subset of what is possible becomes a somewhat arbitrary and subjective activity.

So given the definition of morality being a distinction of "right" or "wrong". Honour killings are merely actions that some humans do some of the time. Its not "good", "bad", "evil", "moral" or "immoral" it is just something that is possible.
With regards to my own self preservation I would deem honour killings as dangerous though, and I would be motivated to belong to a society which actively acts against honour killings, acts to take that danger away from me.

I think this shows a contrast from someone's arbitrary belief that something is wrong or has negative value i.e. gay sex, and thus makes that illegal for everyone even though two strangers having sex has no impact on this person (holder of the belief).

(06-12-2013 01:40 PM)DLJ Wrote:  
(06-12-2013 12:32 PM)Stevil Wrote:  With regards to my last question, I am trying to establish if you have a moral obligation to adhere to other people's value system (if they represent the majority opinion) even if your own values are different from the majority.

Now that question I like.
What! You didn't like my other questions.
I'm sadder than sad.

(06-12-2013 01:40 PM)DLJ Wrote:  I have posted before (eons ago) regarding diversity vs assimilation.

A biological example would say... diversity.
When I go on holiday, I expect to enjoy diversity.
But then, I am not free to break the local laws just because those laws don't apply in the country I came from.
And as I live abroad (and travel a lot) I indeed do assimilate... legally and also culturally to a degree.
Laws are the rules of the game of society that you are within, breaking these laws has consequences (loss of money, loss of liberty etc). Laws don't define moral rules or moral obligations.

(06-12-2013 01:40 PM)DLJ Wrote:  So to answer your question, adherence is contextual and not intrinsic.
If morality or moral obligation is contextual then it isn't objective. If the context is open to interpretation by each individual, then it is merely opinion.

If we take morality to be an individual's value scale and couple that with the contextual situation e.g. Is the individual feeling horny, if so then they will likely seek the company of someone that might be able to be convinced to participate in a sexual encounter, or is the individual feeling that they just want to relax and have fun in which case they might seek the company of some drinking mates.

But how does personal contextual values equate to another often attributed property of morality and that is the "shoulds" and "oughts"?
How does a believer (person A) in subjective morality come to expect that other people (person B, person C) should or ought to comply to person A's personal contextual values?

(06-12-2013 01:40 PM)DLJ Wrote:  
(06-12-2013 12:32 PM)Stevil Wrote:  It means that people can no longer use the alternative phrase.
"Because it was the right thing to do!" because morality no longer has anything to do with right or wrong. It's just about values.

Yup, 'good and bad' are contextual and can only really be ascertained once an outcome is known. Likewise 'right or wrong' can only be judged once a framework of principles and policies has been established.
This is one of the main reasons why I classify myself as "moral nihilist".
There is no objectively agree upon outcome, no objectively agreed upon framework.
People are different and diverse. You cannot say "should" or "ought" with regards to another person, because only that person is qualified to make such a decision.

(06-12-2013 01:40 PM)DLJ Wrote:  To take is back up a notch...
The massacre of a race of people is good for conformity (or assimilation, if there are any left alive) but not for diversity.
Given that we do not know the outcome of the universe, it could be argued (by cockroaches, rats and bacteria) that eradicating humans is the best thing to do.
Or even that the atrocities of genocide are good because it reminds us not to do it again (until we forget).
Yes, another reason why I am "nihilist". I don't consider Humans as special. Our needs and wants on a cosmic scale do not carry more weight than the needs and wants of other animals.


(06-12-2013 01:40 PM)DLJ Wrote:  Maybe I need to be clearer with my terms.

Governance is the mechanism by which stakeholders needs, conditions and options are evaluated to determine balanced, agreed-upon enterprise objectives blah blah.

Government is that body elected (or not, in a dictatorship or theocracy) to get that job done.
In my opinion governance goes too far when it forces (arbitrarily) moral beliefs on people. e.g. if prostitution is deemed immoral and thus outlawed. In my opinion, mature adults are more than capable of deciding for themselves whether to partake in prostitution, and this industry does not make society dangerous or unstable.

So in my opinion government is there to make society stable and functional, not moral.
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06-12-2013, 03:12 PM
RE: Objective Morality
^^^ Agreed. For all of the above.

Except... again, maybe it's me not being clear...
Governments might go too far when forcing (arbitrarily) moral beliefs on people but Governance is merely the mechanism by which all stakeholder's needs are balanced and negotiated.

Governance, by definition, is morally neutral.

For example, Governance suggest a 'code of ethics' is desirable to help achieve desired outcomes and aid decision-making.

But it does not state what those ethics or outcomes must be.

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