Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
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24-11-2016, 08:40 AM (This post was last modified: 24-11-2016 09:39 AM by Velvet.)
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(24-11-2016 08:29 AM)unfogged Wrote:  Shit, I came here for an argument...

No, sir you certainly did not! Laugh out load

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24-11-2016, 09:16 AM (This post was last modified: 24-11-2016 09:29 AM by EvolutionKills.)
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(24-11-2016 07:59 AM)Velvet Wrote:  
(24-11-2016 07:02 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  Well, we can. We can judge their actions under any number of different rubrics, in some they'll come out ahead, in many others they'll fall woefully behind. You can use a rubric to get an objective answer in principle, even if not always in practice. But the selection and implementation of such rubrics is entirely subjective, and dependent upon group consensus; as indeed all social constructs are by their very nature.
Yes, but that wouldn't still mean anything, I can say that Red is objectively the worst color, according to my color favoritism table that rates colors in level of subjective preference.

While you can (and I agree with you) say that if everyone in the world agrees with me, I can probably lead people to repaint every red building another colors, or maybe even make a case for killing people for using the red color whenever other color is available.

But that still wouldn't change the fact that (even if everyone in the whole world accepts and agrees with my color rating table) that my table or that the color red is anything really special, is just a wtf color preference table, with a wtf rating of colors...

Sure I could say that evolution leads us to perceive red as bad because *insert some random stuff* to try to make a point for a ground, but would this change anything?

And most importantly, my point is that If someone else's say he loves red as a color and wants to paint his house red, I shouldn't be able to say (just because I have a consensus over my table) that he is wrong.

Even if I have the power to get him killed for speaking up against the law of "no one should even mention the possibility of red being anything different from the worst color"

The problem here is, once again, a bad analogy. You are trying way too hard to be reductionist here, to the point of making your argument look silly.

(I would also have quoted unfogged, but you already read it and got the point it seems Thumbsup )

Let me try again to explain.

Everyone has opinions. But, not all opinions are equal. Some opinions carry a greater value. Some opinions are informed opinions. So please keep that in mind going forward.

So when someone uses reason to argue for the use of reason to judge morality, instead of consulting the divine or some other interpretation? When someone argues that 'harm and suffering' make a good moral rubric, and back that opinion up with reason, evidence, and sound logic? That person is making an objectively better argument than a divine command theory proponent. Reason, evidence, and logic have a proved track record of being the most reliable means of getting the most accurate answers in anything we apply them to.

So while all moral rubrics might ultimately have no objective foundation, some foundations are still objectively better than others, relatively speaking.


(24-11-2016 07:59 AM)Velvet Wrote:  
(24-11-2016 06:02 AM)EK Wrote:  Within the confines of social constructs, they are. A lone person who believes with his whole heart that the country belong to them by right matters not if they're the only one that agrees with them. But if enough people do agree, now they're a monarch.
I would argue that he is not, its just perspective, like money doesn't really stops being just paper, despite the value that we infuse simbolicaly to it, it never becomes valuable on its own.

I should probably tell you that money is the medium by which things are exchanged, not the value for which they are. That's how modern paper currency works. Wink


(24-11-2016 07:59 AM)Velvet Wrote:  If someone says he doesn't value money we shouldn't be able to say he is wrong.

Of course he doesn't. But their life will be objectively harder if they try to barter in an economy that has moved entirely on to specie and beyond. The economy already has an accepted unit of exchange, and denying that only makes your own life harder.


(24-11-2016 07:59 AM)Velvet Wrote:  I think we could actually make our debate a lot clearer.

I think that we can't judge someone who is acting on his personal opinion as wrong using only our own personal opinion as a metter, even if more people happen to agree with us.

Well, we can, and do. Remember that 'wrong' is in and of itself an entirely subjective valuation. So of course we can judge other things as wrong. And if enough people agree with you, you can enforce your opinion over theirs. Insofar as a social construct is concerned, that is the deciding factor.


(24-11-2016 07:59 AM)Velvet Wrote:  We would only be able to judge him if we use some higher standard (which doesn't exist), in case of science, we trust well made tests results more than we trust hyphothesis, we trust more what evidence points than what our personal intuition points.

Nope. We're not going to have a mathematical equation that we can simply plug all the variables into and get an objective answer to morality. If you're holding out for that ephemeral equation, you'll find yourself waiting forever; while everyone else passes you by. Morality is a big, grey, amorphous, and ever changing mass of ambiguity.

We can use logic, reason, and evidence to help us make moral judgments; and to those who value truth and accuracy, those findings will be objectively better than the alternative. We have good reasons to value logic and evidence, even if we don't have an objective, universal constant, or mathematical equation to prove that they are the 'correct' tools to use for the job.


(24-11-2016 07:59 AM)Velvet Wrote:  I cannot say your intuition is wrong because my intuition is against yours, and shouldn't matter if everyone else has the same intuition as me.

Except that you can and should. If you can convince me, great. If I can convince you, also great. If either of us hold a minority opinion, but convinces enough people, our opinion might become ascendant and enforceable as part of the social construct. Not because it is objectively true in any sense, but because you got enough people to agree with you, and that is the determining factor in a social construct.


(24-11-2016 07:59 AM)Velvet Wrote:  Why on morallity that would be different?

Because morality is a social construct, not a math problem. Or rather, if it is a math problem, too many of the variable are subjective valuations, and thus even under the best circumstance approximation is the closest we can ever get to a 'correct' answer to any such question.

Morality is a human creation, not a scientific constant or law of the universe. We can, and do, make and change the rules as we go. That however doesn't mean that there cannot be winners and losers.


(24-11-2016 07:59 AM)Velvet Wrote:  
Quote:I say you can. Challenge other belief systems, challenge your own. Things don't get better* if people don't try. Simply reducing everything to impotent moral relativity is pointless. If you think something is immoral, question why, and sort it out. Challenge others, and see if your reasoning stacks up. If you value reason (which too is a subjective valuation of sorts), then make the case as to why rationality and reason is moral, and do your best to convince those who disagree with you. Don't cede the moral high-ground unless someone else can convince you otherwise. In a society that favors debate over bloodshed, it's the best way to make moral progress**.
*I would argue there's no "better", only different, and ask why X would be better than Y, and you would say, according to the table which I picked subjectively.

And I would respond: Sorry but that's not enought to say what's better, your table its not necessarily right, and we know that, so why should we use your table? and not any other? in face of this, shouldn't we suspend judgment?

Sure, or you can also use reason, logic, and evidence to support your subjective valuation. Not all opinions are created equally, some carry a greater weight. Drinking Beverage

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24-11-2016, 09:51 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(24-11-2016 09:16 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  Morality is a human creation, not a scientific constant or law of the universe. We can, and do, make and change the rules as we go. That however doesn't mean that there cannot be winners and losers.

Yeah, it occurs to me that to even attempt to consider morality as objective is a category error.

We might as well try to assert that there is an objective standard for beauty.

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24-11-2016, 10:09 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
Quote:I don't feel comfortable on acting upon some set of instincs* bestowed on me by evolution, or at least not enought* to judge the action of others who are bestowed with other set of instinct-based (but logically equivalent) notions.

*instincts
*enough

I'm wondering if English is not her primary language, as she's very poor at expressing herself, (that may be part of the problem here).

There is no "final" answer to questions concerning the place and origins of morality. The best of philosophers debate it constantly. Attempting to present the subject as though there is or might be one settled answer is simply ignorance of the subject, in general.

The sentence quoted above is a total mis-characterization of those who oppose the notion of "objective morality". It is a straw-man.

Besides the fact she has reduced the position she opposes to a "reductio ad absurdam", https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductio_ad_absurdum
she's presented an example of the fallacy of the false dilemma.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_dilemma

As many have said here, shared moral systems are learned societal constructs, different in almost every culture, developed in long processes, that those cultures have found to be useful in maximizing the survival, health, well-being, (the principle of beneficence) and in some cases, the freedom of groups and individuals. In some cases, individuals can act differently (for good or ill) in maximizing these values than their own societies do.

The main problem all along in this thread, is that she has NEVER ONCE proposed an alternative to what she has decried. She says she's uncomfortable (in the quote above) and NEVER proposes a coherent alternative. She was asked to propose one, and could not, and did not. And that's the problem. There is no body of "objective morality" she can cite that applies as a remedy to her discomfort. As others have said "Welcome to the real world". The use of National Socialism (Hitler et all) is a totally spurious argument, (as well as an example of the Affirming the Consequent fallacy https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Affirming_the_consequent ). The entire world, including many of those who, for MANY reasons, participated in it, agrees that the actions of the National Socialists were immoral, and broke ALL the principles a civilized society is required to act in accordance with, for the reasons given in the paragraph above.

The only way to remedy how this "discomfort" argument falls flat on its ass, it to propose and support a moral system, and tell us where it comes from, and how it is known to be *the* one that we *must* follow, and how it is she knows that.

Never gonna happen.

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24-11-2016, 10:21 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(24-11-2016 10:09 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
Quote:I don't feel comfortable on acting upon some set of instincs* bestowed on me by evolution, or at least not enought* to judge the action of others who are bestowed with other set of instinct-based (but logically equivalent) notions.

*instincts
*enough

I'm wondering if English is not her primary language, as she's very poor at expressing herself, (that may be part of the problem here).

There is no "final" answer to questions concerning the place and origins of morality. The best of philosophers debate it constantly. Attempting to present the subject as though there is or might be one settled answer is simply ignorance of the subject, in general.

The sentence quoted above is a total mis-characterization of those who oppose the notion of "objective morality". It is a straw-man.

Besides the fact she has reduced the position she opposes to a "reductio ad absurdam", https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductio_ad_absurdum
she's presented an example of the fallacy of the false dilemma.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_dilemma

As many have said here, shared moral systems are learned societal constructs, different in almost every culture, developed in long processes, that those cultures have found to be useful in maximizing the survival, health, well-being, (the principle of beneficence) and in some cases, the freedom of groups and individuals. In some cases, individuals can act differently (for good or ill) in maximizing these values than their own societies do.

The main problem all along in this thread, is that she has NEVER ONCE proposed an alternative to what she has decried. She says she's uncomfortable (in the quote above) and NEVER proposes a coherent alternative. She was asked to propose one, and could not, and did not. And that's the problem. There is no body of "objective morality" she can cite that applies as a remedy to her discomfort. As others have said "Welcome to the real world". The use of National Socialism (Hitler et all) is a totally spurious argument, (as well as an example of the Affirming the Consequent fallacy https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Affirming_the_consequent ). The entire world, including many of those who, for MANY reasons, participated in it, agrees that the actions of the National Socialists were immoral, and broke ALL the principles a civilized society is required to act in accordance with, for the reasons given in the paragraph above.

The only way to remedy how this "discomfort" argument falls flat on its ass, it to propose and support a moral system, and tell us where it comes from, and how it is known to be *the* one that we *must* follow, and how it is she knows that.

Never gonna happen.

So many clichés of condescending display, so much arrogance presented in such a low intellectual content text, that makes me wonder if you have any reason to post aside from masturbating your own ego.

I have only to thank for people like EK, unfogged, DLJ, and others for compensating for all the brain cells your childish rhetoric costs me everytime I make the mistake of reading it.

And yes, english is not my main language.

That which can be destroyed by the truth should be.”
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24-11-2016, 10:24 AM (This post was last modified: 25-11-2016 11:41 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(24-11-2016 10:21 AM)Velvet Wrote:  
(24-11-2016 10:09 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  *instincts
*enough

I'm wondering if English is not her primary language, as she's very poor at expressing herself, (that may be part of the problem here).

There is no "final" answer to questions concerning the place and origins of morality. The best of philosophers debate it constantly. Attempting to present the subject as though there is or might be one settled answer is simply ignorance of the subject, in general.

The sentence quoted above is a total mis-characterization of those who oppose the notion of "objective morality". It is a straw-man.

Besides the fact she has reduced the position she opposes to a "reductio ad absurdam", https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductio_ad_absurdum
she's presented an example of the fallacy of the false dilemma.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_dilemma

As many have said here, shared moral systems are learned societal constructs, different in almost every culture, developed in long processes, that those cultures have found to be useful in maximizing the survival, health, well-being, (the principle of beneficence) and in some cases, the freedom of groups and individuals. In some cases, individuals can act differently (for good or ill) in maximizing these values than their own societies do.

The main problem all along in this thread, is that she has NEVER ONCE proposed an alternative to what she has decried. She says she's uncomfortable (in the quote above) and NEVER proposes a coherent alternative. She was asked to propose one, and could not, and did not. And that's the problem. There is no body of "objective morality" she can cite that applies as a remedy to her discomfort. As others have said "Welcome to the real world". The use of National Socialism (Hitler et all) is a totally spurious argument, (as well as an example of the Affirming the Consequent fallacy https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Affirming_the_consequent ). The entire world, including many of those who, for MANY reasons, participated in it, agrees that the actions of the National Socialists were immoral, and broke ALL the principles a civilized society is required to act in accordance with, for the reasons given in the paragraph above.

The only way to remedy how this "discomfort" argument falls flat on its ass, it to propose and support a moral system, and tell us where it comes from, and how it is known to be *the* one that we *must* follow, and how it is she knows that.

Never gonna happen.

So many clichés of condescending display, so much arrogance presented in such a low intellectual content text, that makes me wonder if you have any reason to post aside from masturbating your own ego.

I have only to thank for people like EK, unfogged, DLJ, and others for compensating for all the brain cells you speech costs me everytime I make the mistake of reading it.

And yes, english is not my main language.

But NO COUNTERARGUMENT. That's all that matters.
Essentially you're saying:
"I'm uncomfortable, therefore what makes me uncomfortable cannot be true".
Propose a moral system to remedy your discomfort, or you got nothing.
"The argument from personal discomfort" Facepalm

Thanks for the neg rep, V. Are you like 12 ?

"Negative (-1): Childish rhetoric at best, weak intellect and unpolite."
Uh huh. And the ANSWERS you posted to my question are where ?
Oh wait. Instead of answering a legitimate question, you throw poo, and throw a tantrum.
We all see who has what sort of intellect. And BTW, it's "impolite", not "unpolite", child. Big Grin

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26-11-2016, 12:29 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
Bucky, man, I usually admire your responses-- because they generally are well thought out, intelligent, and direct to the point-- but I think I have to ask you to pump the brakes for a bit. Several of your recent responses are far more emotional and aggressive than I think is warranted, and the approach actually removes some of the utility of your otherwise very bright answers.

For instance, calling her "child" for confusing "impolite" and "unpolite"... you know damned well that English is one of the most jumbled-up, confusing languages on the planet, and that was a simple mistake. It did not deserve ridicule.

When your grasp of her first language is equal to her grasp of yours, it might be warranted to poke fun at one another's mistakes. For now, try to take the high ground.

I think you're among the brightest minds we have here, and that's really saying something. Don't ruin it by becoming an emotion-driven asshole. (I say this fully aware that I, from time to time, become entangled in my own reactionary emotions and let it get the better of me when I could have made a better, more reasonable argument.)

This subject is usually thrown at us by religionists who are here to assert that they have an Objective Morality™ that is superior to our subjective one, and to imply that we atheists are therefore moral anarchists, at best. That's not what Velvet is saying or doing. The subject is worthy of discussion, even of vehement disagreement... that is, ironically, how we actually do make moral judgments on a societal scale, as EK pointed out quite eloquently, above.

In a recent PM, I said this to someone on the topic of "objective" vs "subjective" morality:

The simple answer is that, other than the personal sense of ethics (based on how we're raised, mostly, but partly on our genetics) and "group morality", there is no ability to make objective moral judgments. No one gets that ability, and those who claim they can do so because God Says So™ are some of the most dangerous people on earth because they act on the belief that an external set of judgments must be able to override their innate sense of moral values (assuming they are not sociopaths, who have none). When you are faced with a Christian who is trying to argue that they have objective morality, you can go one of two routes:

1) You can point out that their "objective" moral guidebook contains some pretty awful, immoral stuff such as slavery, and is clearly not an objective guide. This leads to some amazing conversations as you watch them try to justify things like slavery and genocide, in defense of their notion of "objective" morality!

2) You can use what I like to call the "militant agnostic" line:

I don't know... AND YOU DON'T EITHER!!!!!

Because really, what they're attacking is not your morality, but trying to establish that their own is objective, and therefore superior to the grey-area, subjective, collective moral concepts. Don't surrender that ground to them.

It's okay not to know. It's okay to have to guess and fumble our way through life.


Okay kids, discuss. And be nice! Tongue

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26-11-2016, 04:54 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
Velvet, I am reliably informed (and was shown the picture) that you are a dude.

My apologies for referring to you by the incorrect sex/gender. You didn't list it in your profile!

Nevertheless, I am sorry. The slight was unintentional.

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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26-11-2016, 06:41 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(26-11-2016 12:29 AM)RocketSurgeon76 Wrote:  For instance, calling her "child" for confusing "impolite" and "unpolite"... you know damned well that English is one of the most jumbled-up, confusing languages on the planet, and that was a simple mistake. It did not deserve ridicule.

That's not why they were called "child". You totally misinterpreted the post. It was : (not for the misspelling or use of language, (I *said* "BTW* ... I'm not that small-minded) .... and why is it, Vosur gets to correct everyone and play "grammar Nazi" and it's funny, and when anyone else does it, they get called out ?
It was for :
a. the reasoning (or lack thereof). Said they came to 'discuss' the basis of judgments. They came to *tell us* "Craig was not wrong". Facepalm
b. the total failure to see the "next step", - if morality is objective, then what moral system are they going to employ. No answer ever. Just pissy diatribe when challenged.
c. neg rep, stating what it does ... using the SAME language, (and they get no *correction*) when it has never *contributed* anything here.

I get it. Fuck you TTA. I'm done here.

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26-11-2016, 06:50 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
That's easy: Because Vosur's a dick. We expect that of him, not you. Tongue

Bucky, seriously man, I don't think this calls for you to leave.

I don't know what else is going on in your life right now, but I wrote what I wrote because I DO respect what you write, I look forward to what you write, and I've noticed that lately you have a large degree of venom in much of your work. I think it detracts from the excellent points you make (such as the above), and wanted to ask you to pump the brakes a bit so that your reasoning can hit home.

Edit to Add: But you do have a good point about the neg rep. I'm taking a point from Velvet until that is remedied. That, too, was uncalled for.

"Theology made no provision for evolution. The biblical authors had missed the most important revelation of all! Could it be that they were not really privy to the thoughts of God?" - E. O. Wilson
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