There is no such thing as evil
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19-06-2014, 08:01 PM (This post was last modified: 19-06-2014 08:05 PM by RobbyPants.)
RE: There is no such thing as evil
(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  I just think you underestimate both my arguments and philosophy. Just like 99,99 % of people in the world.

It turns out, I'm a computer scientist, and I'm smarter than 99.999% of people in the world.

See, I can do it too. It's not compelling.


(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  <snip>


You're still arguing that just because our opinions have an objective, physical origin that they cannot be subjective. That's what the word means. Different people evaluate the same thing differently.

And, yes, it would be nice if society worked without people agreeing to band together and use force when necessary... yet, it doesn't. So, your ideal world doesn't exist. Conclusion: objective morality?


(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  You can think of ownership as a real piece of software in our brains, that causes real behavior and has real, deep and beneficial effects on society.

You can think of religion as a real piece of software in our brains, that causes real behavior and has real, deep and beneficial effects on society.

Because it totally does, and it's totally bullshit. Religion has a big impact on behavior and society because people believe it, not because some invisible wizard says so or because of souls. Property rights have an effect on society because people believe them, not because of magnetic fields or wargarble.


(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  It may stand on knowledge that you don't have, such as most of what I already said.

No. My arguments stand on knowledge you don't have (see my baseless 99.999% claim above). See? I can do that too!

Perhaps there's something you're not understanding. Stop talking about how awesome you are as a philosopher and let your arguments speak for themselves.


(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  That's how rational arguments work! And how ancient Greek philosophers worked.
Rational method is like playing Battleships with reality. You don't know in advance what reality and logic allows you to do. And just like with Battleships, there are not that many possibilities or ambiguities, not in the world of reason and logic. Logic naturally leads to or excludes lots of possibilities. The ones that are left, are our, human real possibilities, ready to be tested. So you make a proposal (or take someone else's proposal) and follow it logically, like question it through Socratic method to see if that hits something or leads somewhere. Especially you check if it doesn't go against its own premises, things like that.

Your argument hinges precisely on:
  • You claiming that objective brain processes can only lead to objective results (and ignoring different people reaching different subjective conclusions).
  • Computer science analogies that seem to prove imagined unicorns are "real".
  • You saying you know things I don't.


(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  I know what subjectivity is, but I don't know what meaning I am supposed to draw from that.

You're supposed to draw the meaning that not everyone will evaluate the same set of stimuli in the same way. Sure, the mechanical process firing in their brain is a series of objective events, but the end result is a different opinion, and that's what the word means.


(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  It never stopped my parents or teachers from punishing me and blaming me from the position of moral authority. I don't think subjectivity ever served as a reason to stop anybody from anything.

I'm not saying it is! It works just fine! By working together, we've gone from hunting mammoths to survive to beer, Taco Bell, and Internet porn. It's fucking awesome! And they did that by all having a similar enough opinion that they'd rather work together.

I've made almost this exact same argument to theists trying to get them to understand why there could be secular reasons for altruistic, or at least cooperative behavior. The only difference was, I didn't say because the thought process originated from my physical brain, that the system was objective.
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19-06-2014, 08:28 PM
RE: There is no such thing as evil
(16-06-2014 06:57 PM)Jeremy E Walker Wrote:  There is no such thing as evil.





Good and evil is a bunch of crap.




An atheist who is a member of this forum has made these two statements recently.






How many agree?

You are the evidence that evil exists! Shy

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19-06-2014, 08:40 PM
RE: There is no such thing as evil
(19-06-2014 05:47 PM)Dom Wrote:  Dogs have property too, and they can get in disputes over it also. I am sure other animals do too.

Sorry, I haven't been following this whole thing, it has nothing to do with Jeremy misquoting what I said as per the title of the thread. But you mentioned that cats don't own objects but territory, well, dogs have both and I am sure other animals do, too.
That's much more interesting the the rest of this thread.
I have some experience with dogs but not alot.
If a dog considers a toy to be his/hers and is not playing with it but sees another dog chewing on it, then does the dog go over and fight over the toy?
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20-06-2014, 01:26 AM (This post was last modified: 20-06-2014 02:38 AM by Luminon.)
RE: There is no such thing as evil
(19-06-2014 08:01 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  No. My arguments stand on knowledge you don't have (see my baseless 99.999% claim above). See? I can do that too!

Perhaps there's something you're not understanding. Stop talking about how awesome you are as a philosopher and let your arguments speak for themselves.
In my experience, well-educated and intelligent people aren't good at correcting themselves, because they don't need to do it very often. Whatever anyone from the outside could correct, they already did it themselves.
I think I have made myself very clear in this post and I'm curious if it works this time. I think you have misinterpreted me and I marked that with facepalms.

(19-06-2014 08:01 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  You're still arguing that just because our opinions have an objective, physical origin that they cannot be subjective. That's what the word means. Different people evaluate the same thing differently.

And, yes, it would be nice if society worked without people agreeing to band together and use force when necessary... yet, it doesn't. So, your ideal world doesn't exist. Conclusion: objective morality?
Facepalm No, I do not argue about opinions or content of opinions. Consistency is a basic property of reality. (i.e. things follow patterns and if they don't, there's always empirical reason for that)
The degree to which we are consistent in our thinking and emotions and shared knowledge, we can be objectively moral.

If you had any idea what I mean, you would not write that:
(19-06-2014 08:01 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  You can think of religion as a real piece of software in our brains, that causes real behavior and has real, deep and beneficial effects on society.

Because it totally does, and it's totally bullshit. Religion has a big impact on behavior and society because people believe it, not because some invisible wizard says so or because of souls. Property rights have an effect on society because people believe them, not because of magnetic fields or wargarble.

Whatever crazy or wacky opinions, beliefs or religions we have, once we are confronted with anything different, consistency on both sides will get us to a peaceful solution.
Because religious intolerance is based on inconsistency. It is saying at the same time that religion is very good (mine) and religion is very bad (some other people's).

Why is that? It is because morality is based on objective logical reasoning and that is a method, not a content of opinions. Religion is NOT a method, it's a final prescribed set of conclusions. Get it?

That is why inter-religious conflicts lead to violence, beliefs re just conclusions, not methods. People can't draw any more conclusions from them and the only method they have is fight, flight or freeze, pretty down the reptile brain.

(19-06-2014 08:01 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  Your argument hinges precisely on:
[*]You claiming that objective brain processes can only lead to objective results (and ignoring different people reaching different subjective conclusions).
Facepalm Why the hell would I say that?
I only say that objective (externally, socially oriented) brain processes WOULD lead to objective results IF done consistently, with logic, reason, self-knowledge and shared information.
(Why? Because reality is consistent.)
Whatever subjective conclusions we may have, they're quite useless if the other person doesn't share them, so they get disregarded pretty quickly by rational people. (except when talking anonymously on the internet)

(19-06-2014 08:01 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  [*]Computer science analogies that seem to prove imagined unicorns are "real".
Imagined unicorns are not a concept, they are an idea, a brain blip. A concept connects things inside and outside our brain - or between brains. Concept is connection. Morality is only present in external, social connections.

(19-06-2014 08:01 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  You're supposed to draw the meaning that not everyone will evaluate the same set of stimuli in the same way. Sure, the mechanical process firing in their brain is a series of objective events, but the end result is a different opinion, and that's what the word means.
Sure, so what? Morality (social consistency) is the peer review of the brain. Irrational stuff can't get across through language to other people without indoctrination (which is based on some kinds of violence, violation of integrity, so we know it isn't moral). Language (or actions) force us to give our beliefs certain form to our brain content and that form can be consistently critically evaluated.
Try to offer a toddler an invisible candy or a 100 buckets of candy after he's dead.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FxYJOBaXQww

(19-06-2014 08:01 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  I'm not saying it is! It works just fine! By working together, we've gone from hunting mammoths to survive to beer, Taco Bell, and Internet porn. It's fucking awesome! And they did that by all having a similar enough opinion that they'd rather work together.

I've made almost this exact same argument to theists trying to get them to understand why there could be secular reasons for altruistic, or at least cooperative behavior. The only difference was, I didn't say because the thought process originated from my physical brain, that the system was objective.
No. Not similar enough opinion! That is NOT the point at all. Facepalm If working together through shared conclusions was moral, then there would be no difference between a team of surgeons and a gang rape.
What I mean is a similar enough method of arriving at conclusions!
Similar enough opinion spreads only by violence and indoctrination (violence on children), because it's a content, a conclusion.
Consistency has no content, no conclusion and so it can resolve differences between parties objectively, that is, with the things that are objectively present out there in the world, because that is what true concepts do. They connect subjective brain blips, sounds of language and objective objects. Language gives subjective brain blips a form that can be objectively evaluated and compared with things out there. There is no morality without recipients of language or actions out there.
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20-06-2014, 06:19 AM
RE: There is no such thing as evil
(20-06-2014 01:26 AM)Luminon Wrote:  In my experience, well-educated and intelligent people aren't good at correcting themselves, because they don't need to do it very often.

Actually, according to the Dunning-Kruger effect, people with skill tend to keep quiet about it and assume they know less than what they actually know. The vocal ones are usually the ones who know less, and they are, not ironically, the worst at detecting true skill.

Seriously: stop bragging. You hurt your position every time you do it.


(20-06-2014 01:26 AM)Luminon Wrote:  No, I do not argue about opinions or content of opinions. Consistency is a basic property of reality. (i.e. things follow patterns and if they don't, there's always empirical reason for that)
The degree to which we are consistent in our thinking and emotions and shared knowledge, we can be objectively moral.

...

Whatever crazy or wacky opinions, beliefs or religions we have, once we are confronted with anything different, consistency on both sides will get us to a peaceful solution.
Because religious intolerance is based on inconsistency. It is saying at the same time that religion is very good (mine) and religion is very bad (some other people's).

Why is that? It is because morality is based on objective logical reasoning and that is a method, not a content of opinions. Religion is NOT a method, it's a final prescribed set of conclusions. Get it?

Here's the thing: you're putting the cart before the horse. You're using the fact that we have society to prop up the idea that property rights and other morality systems are inherently true, and society exists as a result.

Conversely, I would argue that society wouldn't exist if we didn't agree on a certain amount of working together. The fact that we're talking over the Internet is proof that we were willing to work together. It is not, however, proof that "working together" is some fundamental, objective moral value.

We have evolved to favor cooperation. There's nothing more fancy to it.


(20-06-2014 01:26 AM)Luminon Wrote:  Imagined unicorns are not a concept, they are an idea, a brain blip. A concept connects things inside and outside our brain - or between brains. Concept is connection. Morality is only present in external, social connections.

Property rights are not a concept, they are an idea, a brain blip. They just happen to be a brain blip that a lot of people share. That's what connects it. You haven't demonstrated anything more than this other than your assertion.

Any further distinctions you make between property rights and stuff like unicorns or people's very strong belief in religion is special pleading. You haven't demonstrated it in any useful way other than "you say so", and some arbitrary distinctions that you draw that you can't prove (such as property rights connecting between brains).

I've already demonstrated how property rights can be a shared belief between multiple people without any inherent, fundamental connection or existence outside of our brains.


(20-06-2014 01:26 AM)Luminon Wrote:  No. Not similar enough opinion! That is NOT the point at all. Facepalm If working together through shared conclusions was moral, then there would be no difference between a team of surgeons and a gang rape.

You're falling into the theistic trap of arguing against subjective morality via an argument from adverse consequences. Just because gang rape is creepy (an opinion held by a majority of people) doesn't mean that a group of people can't decide to do it, or that most people's shared opinion somehow points to an objective morality system.

I never said working together from a shared consensus was "moral"; I said it's what we do. Moral or not, it's how the world works. You've yet to demonstrate otherwise.
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20-06-2014, 01:51 PM (This post was last modified: 20-06-2014 03:13 PM by Luminon.)
RE: There is no such thing as evil
(20-06-2014 06:19 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  Actually, according to the Dunning-Kruger effect, people with skill tend to keep quiet about it and assume they know less than what they actually know. The vocal ones are usually the ones who know less, and they are, not ironically, the worst at detecting true skill.

Seriously: stop bragging. You hurt your position every time you do it.

The DK effect is for people facing general situations with lack of knowledge. I meant situations where the people are confronted in areas of their expertise. I don't think the DK effect applies there. An expert, no matter how modest, will always see laymen or outside critic much more probably wrong than himself.
It could be called a reverse Dunning-Kruger effect, because a less intellectual person might be easier swayed by a smart talk of critics even if he is an expert at some areas.
So that's why it looks like I'm bragging. This is my area of expertise, I don't exhibit the usual social signals of conformity. However, did you ever see that I would ever attack and berate an opponent for disagreeing with me? That would be a sign of true arrogance, because arrogance is fuelled by uncertainty.

Frankly, I don't know what to think about cjlr according to this theory, because he's both out of his area of expertise and yet he does get personal.
But nevermind, my study of sociology taught me to come up with social teories on the fly, paradigms in a week, and they don't have to be perfect nor proven Big Grin
(sorry, private joke, public offense)

(20-06-2014 06:19 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  Here's the thing: you're putting the cart before the horse. You're using the fact that we have society to prop up the idea that property rights and other morality systems are inherently true, and society exists as a result.

Conversely, I would argue that society wouldn't exist if we didn't agree on a certain amount of working together. The fact that we're talking over the Internet is proof that we were willing to work together. It is not, however, proof that "working together" is some fundamental, objective moral value.

We have evolved to favor cooperation. There's nothing more fancy to it.
What if we evolved to favor cooperation not because of agreement, but cooperation despite of disagreement? Agreement doesn't automatically lead to cooperation. Some societies remained the same for centuries or even millenia, because slaves accepted the slavery or the caste system.
Why? Because agreement that does not relate to objective technical know-how about the world is pretty much useless, except for military expansion. Non-technical agreement is good only for deciding who do we bash on head with a piece of sharp bronze and who we don't. That is an objective distinction, technical agreement is universally preferable to non-technical agreement.

I think the agreement about private ownership leads to economical success, that supersedes agreements about anything else and may even make many other disagreements irrelevant. Trade is very impersonal and it bridges differences of opinion. Some societies evolve, some don't, but that is a rather recent phenomenon.

(20-06-2014 06:19 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  Property rights are not a concept, they are an idea, a brain blip. They just happen to be a brain blip that a lot of people share. That's what connects it. You haven't demonstrated anything more than this other than your assertion.
"Just happen to be" is not an answer. The truth is, acceptance of private property brings success and productivity that allows more people to share the concept. Many other concepts spread like plague, but they damage their hosts. Private ownership helps people cooperate non-violently and economically productively, applying science and so on. That is an important distinction.

(20-06-2014 06:19 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  I've already demonstrated how property rights can be a shared belief between multiple people without any inherent, fundamental connection or existence outside of our brains.
That's an even stronger claim for property rights, if they arise independently from the... properties of reality itself.


(20-06-2014 06:19 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  You're falling into the theistic trap of arguing against subjective morality via an argument from adverse consequences. Just because gang rape is creepy (an opinion held by a majority of people) doesn't mean that a group of people can't decide to do it, or that most people's shared opinion somehow points to an objective morality system.

I never said working together from a shared consensus was "moral"; I said it's what we do. Moral or not, it's how the world works. You've yet to demonstrate otherwise.
Focus on the point and answer this:
Quote:What I mean is a similar enough method of arriving at conclusions!
Similar enough opinion spreads only by violence and indoctrination (violence on children), because it's a content, a conclusion.
Consistency has no content, no conclusion and so it can resolve differences between parties objectively, that is, with the things that are objectively present out there in the world, because that is what true concepts do. They connect subjective brain blips, sounds of language and objective objects. Language gives subjective brain blips a form that can be objectively evaluated and compared with things out there. There is no morality without recipients of language or actions out there.
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20-06-2014, 08:25 PM
RE: There is no such thing as evil
The Ice Capades: Definitely evil.

Tacos: Definitely good.

Any questions?

There is no "I" in "team" but there is a broken and mixed up "me."
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21-06-2014, 02:03 PM (This post was last modified: 21-06-2014 02:11 PM by Mathilda.)
RE: There is no such thing as evil
(18-06-2014 12:21 PM)Luminon Wrote:  Anyway, if you aren't all enthusiastic about what I say, just say so. It took me years to learn this stuff and I'd love to find someone who's going to be so enthusiastic that he'll pass it on to others. If you're just like... 'meh... well, I must look further. Not everyone's a world problem solver.


(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  I just think you underestimate both my arguments and philosophy. Just like 99,99 % of people in the world.


I'm personally amazed that out of a global population of over 7 billion we are lucky enough to have two people on this forum who are going to solve the world's problems between them.

I am of course talking about Luminon and Trainwreck.

I can't wait to see how they implement their world-changing ideas without being able to convince a single other person on this forum.

Especially with this attitude:

(06-06-2014 10:32 AM)Luminon Wrote:  Anyway, does it matter who agrees with me? If you can check the logic, doesn't matter if the whole world is against you.
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21-06-2014, 02:20 PM
RE: There is no such thing as evil
(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  I just think you underestimate both my arguments and philosophy. Just like 99,99 % of people in the world.

Facepalm

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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21-06-2014, 02:31 PM
RE: There is no such thing as evil
(21-06-2014 02:20 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(19-06-2014 03:16 PM)Luminon Wrote:  I just think you underestimate both my arguments and philosophy. Just like 99,99 % of people in the world.

Facepalm

C'mon, Bucky, can .01% of the population be wrong?

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Are my Chakras on straight?
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