Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
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09-07-2017, 12:49 PM
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
(09-07-2017 12:41 PM)Thoreauvian Wrote:  And yes, I think you can hold people legally responsible for such bad habits.

That is where we differ. I don't see it as habits because I don't see that one can control something one is not aware of.

[Image: dobie.png]Science is the process we've designed to be responsible for generating our best guess as to what the fuck is going on. Girly Man
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09-07-2017, 06:20 PM (This post was last modified: 09-07-2017 06:24 PM by Thoreauvian.)
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
(09-07-2017 12:49 PM)Dom Wrote:  
(09-07-2017 12:41 PM)Thoreauvian Wrote:  And yes, I think you can hold people legally responsible for such bad habits.

That is where we differ. I don't see it as habits because I don't see that one can control something one is not aware of.

Fair enough. I will give you an example of what I mean.

A young woman texts while she drives. One day she runs over a little boy crossing the street because she wasn't paying attention. She was unaware she was doing anything wrong. Can she be held legally responsible?

Laws are already created for variations in intention and awareness, since we have first-degree murder, second-degree murder, manslaughter, and negligent homicide.
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09-07-2017, 07:43 PM (This post was last modified: 09-07-2017 08:05 PM by nosferatu323.)
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
(09-07-2017 12:49 PM)Dom Wrote:  
(09-07-2017 12:41 PM)Thoreauvian Wrote:  And yes, I think you can hold people legally responsible for such bad habits.

That is where we differ. I don't see it as habits because I don't see that one can control something one is not aware of.

I think notions like awareness, freewill, etc. can not be relevant to something serious such as legal responsibility.

Because these notions are not properly defined, legal matters cannot be based upon concepts that there is no agreement on what they truly mean, I personally don't think they mean anything at all, and I think we should avoid using these terms as we progress towards a more objective conception of reality.

Concerning your objection about legal responsibility for something you cannot consciously control, I think we can look at it from a more realistic perspective and this objection would disappear. Consider this scenario:

You: I cannot be responsible for the crime, because I was not aware of it when it happened. It's just my brain, I have no control over it.

Judge: Ok, you are not responsible if that makes you more comfortable.

You: So, can I go?

Judge: Of course not, there is a punishment for your crime.

You: How is that possible? I'm not responsible but I should be punished?

Judge: Ok, it's not a punishment if that makes you more comfortable.

You: Then what is it?

Judge: The way your brain works, clearly disturbs the social norms that we have defined. Since you are living in our society, we need to try to fix that and help your brain to align itself with our social norms. You should give us your time for a year so we can try to do that.

You: Isn't there any other way to fix my brain?

Judge: Our current method, which is staying in a prison cell for a year, is the most effective one to help with your brain's problem, maybe we learn to directly manipulate your brain in the future. Then we wouldn't need to waste time and budget. Everyone will be happier. But right now this is the best thing we can do. Let's hope for a better future!

You: Ok!

Punishment is just a very simple and effective method to discourage certain behaviors, our big and complex societies cannot survive without it. I think we don't really need any fancy concept like free will to justify it. It is justified as long as it serves the consistency and stability of our societies as a whole.
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09-07-2017, 08:30 PM
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
(09-07-2017 07:43 PM)nosferatu323 Wrote:  I think notions like awareness, freewill, etc. can not be relevant to something serious such as legal responsibility.

While I see your point in general, I think you are mistaken in particular. As in the example I provided above, it makes a great deal of difference whether someone commits a crime in a premeditated fashion, on an impulse, because of an oversight, or completely unaware. The applicable laws and punishments are adjusted accordingly.

This is why I think the everyday concept of free will as the ability to choose is the one we actually use in formulating our laws, and why I think even bad habits are subject to the laws even when automatically performed. After all, our own previous conscious decisions led to those bad habits.
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09-07-2017, 08:43 PM (This post was last modified: 09-07-2017 09:06 PM by nosferatu323.)
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
(09-07-2017 08:30 PM)Thoreauvian Wrote:  
(09-07-2017 07:43 PM)nosferatu323 Wrote:  I think notions like awareness, freewill, etc. can not be relevant to something serious such as legal responsibility.

While I see your point in general, I think you are mistaken in particular. As in the example I provided above, it makes a great deal of difference whether someone commits a crime in a premeditated fashion, on an impulse, because of an oversight, or completely unaware. The applicable laws and punishments are adjusted accordingly.

This is why I think the everyday concept of free will as the ability to choose is the one we actually use in formulating our laws, and why I think even bad habits are subject to the laws even when automatically performed. After all, our own previous conscious decisions led to those bad habits.

I think in secular countries, where they are not worried about people going against some holy/absolute morality, the legal system tries to find the most efficient punishments so the undesired behaviors are discouraged. I don't think they rely on free will, awareness etc. they are only concerned about the stability and efficiency of societies, I don't think they care about any notion of being "just" (whatever that means)

Regarding your example, it's clear that there is not much wrong with the woman's brain. She just has a bad habit of driving and texting. So a mild punishment should be enough for her to fix that habit. The mild punishment is not necessarily because "she wasn't aware of it" it can simply be due to the fact that the problem with the woman's brain is not too serious, so the punishment should be less intense compared to a killer. We only need to know that the woman was not looking at the street when the boy was killed. That's enough for us to infer the appropriate punishment. I think we don't really need a notion of awareness or freewill here.

Also we should note that if the legal system gives the woman a light punishment, the kid's parents might be displeased because they will perceive the punishment as "unjust". They might start protesting and cause problems for the stability of the society. So the legal system should take into account these conditions also. They might give the woman a "more than enough" punishment, so the parents would also be ok with it.
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10-07-2017, 07:46 AM (This post was last modified: 10-07-2017 07:51 AM by Thumpalumpacus.)
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
<edited for being unnecessarily rude>
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15-07-2017, 11:14 PM (This post was last modified: 15-07-2017 11:19 PM by scientious.)
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
Harris makes a number of assumptions and then draws logical conclusions from those assumptions. Dennett makes different assumptions and so draws different conclusions. However, neither one has been able to justify their assumptions other than claiming that they are obvious or common sense.

Mechanistic ideas about the brain are not new and even Turing claimed that the brain was just a computer. If you assume that Turing was right then you would reach the conclusion that free will doesn't exist. However, there are problems with this. First is the obvious observation that no one has been able to specify how the brain works using computational theory. If the brain were just a computer then we would expect to see at least outlines of the system architecture, hardware, and software necessary to match human intelligence. We would expect to see solid research moving towards these goals. These don't actually exist.

Secondly, Harris' ideas are not at all parsimonious. If his claims were true then we would expect his explanation of free will to be the simplest, most direct process. We don't see that. He gives no explanation why a purely mechanistic brain would need to give ideas to a consciousness to make a decision. In other words, in Harris' view the consciousness is just a rubber stamp for decisions that were already determined by non-conscious processes, so why would consciousness exist at all? Harris doesn't even attempt to explain this.

As far as I can tell, phenomenal consciousness is directly related to cognitive processing and consciousness evolved specifically because it was the most efficient, lowest cost route to flexible decision making. This idea fits with evolutionary theory; I can't see how Harris' description would.

If things stay on track then we might get publication of human level machine theory in early 2021. The concern by the Future of Life Institute (and signatories such as Bill Gates, Stephen Hawking, and Elon Musk) that this would lead to a super-AI, far more intelligent than humans is based on a profound ignorance of the actual theory. Claims that robots would take over 40% of jobs in the next 20 years are equally ignorant.
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15-07-2017, 11:25 PM
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
Quote:why would consciousness exist at all?

It doesn't.
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15-07-2017, 11:30 PM
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
(15-07-2017 11:25 PM)ImFred Wrote:  
Quote:why would consciousness exist at all?

It doesn't.

And yet, you seem to be aware of my post. Curious.
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16-07-2017, 12:07 AM
RE: Suffering from the dunning-kruger effect
Consciousness is just a meaningless word of convenience to describe a purely chemical process. It's not caused by the brain; it is the brain. It's nothing more than the brain. So any word that is not related to the physiology of the brain is describing something that doesn't exist: like gods, and souls, and spirits, and ghosts. Free will and consciousness are illusions that provide an evolutionary advantage. Atoms are not alive. Reading people's desperate attempts to explain the workings of things that don't even exist is becoming tiresome. Unless you think you've been infused with some sort of supernatural magic this should be obvious.
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