Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
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23-11-2016, 07:24 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
Velvet,
Your thought processes seem to have echoed my own.

For brevity, here's a link to an interview with a hugely intelligent and, quite franking, damned good looking guy whose opinion I completely agree with ...Soundcloud

The question on morality starts at 18 mins.

But what was not covered there was the potential axiologies (making up Sam's Landscape) that are useful. You mentioned suffering and survival and well-being and here's a good list of 'moral foundations' from Jonathan Haidt's research:

1) Care/harm
2) Fairness/cheating
3) Loyalty/betrayal
4) Authority/subversion
5) Sanctity/degradation
6) Liberty/oppression

So the way I see it is this:
We have 4 main Darwinian drivers:
Survival
Sexual selection
Kin Selection
Reciprocity.

These are built in to our Operation Systems and form our desires (the degree to which varies with heredity and chemical stimuli).

In early childhood our system software, our beliefs, are uploaded (are formed by our environment) and these place us somewhere on the 6 moral foundations (1-3 for liberals; 1-6 for conservatives). This software can be upgraded later.

But also, just in case anyone thinks I'm saying that beliefs are entirely nurture rather than nature, there is the added factor of capacity for development. I mention Lawrence Kohlberg's stages of moral development in the interview but here's a different slant on the same notion:

[Image: 49e74416d926af6b01b53e014aade15a.jpg]

And to address the empathy issue, we will be applying these morals to a "circle of empathy" from self to family, to sect/religion/football team, to nation to species to ecosystem to universe.

So, with my exceptional wide circle of empathy, I could argue that the annihilation of humanity is a very good idea because, quite frankly, we're fucking it all up for everyone else... therefore Vote Trump!

So then, for the nihilist, the question is, so what? Why does it matter?

I hazard that this comes from a desire ... a survival-based desire to belong to the group. We want free-will i.e. moral competence.

People who are not morally competent don't get to vote or sign a contract and aren't usually allowed to have credit cards... and are probably less likely to get laid (sexual selection).

If we want these things we behave as though we have moral competence i.e. we sign (figuratively) the social contract.

As to which social contract (liberal democracy, Sharia etc.) then we are potentially back to Relativism but I would argue that the 6+ moral foundations are the subjective bases for these societal codes of ethics and we (individually and collectively) can make comparisons and look at objective metrics to make our judgements regarding success or failure (for any given criteria) ... i.e. we should not just throw our hands in the air and say all systems are no better or worse than any other.

Relativism is for lazy people.

Cool

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23-11-2016, 07:41 AM (This post was last modified: 23-11-2016 07:46 AM by Velvet.)
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(23-11-2016 07:24 AM)DLJ Wrote:  Velvet,
Your thought processes seem to have echoed my own.

For brevity, here's a link to an interview with a hugely intelligent and, quite franking, damned good looking guy whose opinion I completely agree with ...Soundcloud

The question on morality starts at 18 mins.

But what was not covered there was the potential axiologies (making up Sam's Landscape) that are useful. You mentioned suffering and survival and well-being and here's a good list of 'moral foundations' from Jonathan Haidt's research:

1) Care/harm
2) Fairness/cheating
3) Loyalty/betrayal
4) Authority/subversion
5) Sanctity/degradation
6) Liberty/oppression

So the way I see it is this:
We have 4 main Darwinian drivers:
Survival
Sexual selection
Kin Selection
Reciprocity.

So, with my exceptional wide circle of empathy, I could argue that the annihilation of humanity is a very good idea because, quite frankly, we're fucking it all up for everyone else... therefore Vote Trump!

So then, for the nihilist, the question is, so what? Why does it matter?

I hazard that this comes from a desire ... a survival-based desire to belong to the group. We want free-will i.e. moral competence.

Ok that's a lot of stuff that I will need to do homework before answering you my stance on that, it seems that you grounded morality on the desire, especially the desire to be part of something... While I do recognize those drives and desires as true, I don't see how we could ground right and wrong from them...

I will listen to the lecture and read about those foundations, I will eventually speak to you about it again, if this thread is dead by then I will send you a private message.

I certainly do not feel like total relativism is for lazy people, its scary as fuck...

[EDIT: Never thought that WL Craig of all people would make me rethink how I approach morality, Laugh out load]

That which can be destroyed by the truth should be.”
-P.C. Hodgell - Seeker’s Mask - Kirien
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23-11-2016, 07:46 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(23-11-2016 07:41 AM)Velvet Wrote:  ...
it's scary as fuck...

With that, we are agreed.

But right and wrong come from the beliefs not the desires.

Regarding "if this thread is dead by then", don't worry about that... if St.Evil and Matt Finney get on board we've got about another 20 pages to go.

Big Grin

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23-11-2016, 07:47 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(23-11-2016 07:16 AM)Velvet Wrote:  
(23-11-2016 07:03 AM)Fatbaldhobbit Wrote:  is our responsibility to our children and ourselves to establish a fair and just society.

Why?

A fair and just society would allow the maximum benefit for the maximum people.

Would that not be better than a society where some people had maximum benefits and some people had minimum benefits?

Help for the living. Hope for the dead. ~ R.G. Ingersoll

Freedom offers opportunity. Opportunity confers responsibility. Responsibility to use the freedom we enjoy wisely, honestly and humanely. ~ Noam Chomsky
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23-11-2016, 07:49 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(23-11-2016 07:41 AM)Velvet Wrote:  ... if this thread is dead by then I will send you a private message.

Heh. Morality threads never die. Tongue

Help for the living. Hope for the dead. ~ R.G. Ingersoll

Freedom offers opportunity. Opportunity confers responsibility. Responsibility to use the freedom we enjoy wisely, honestly and humanely. ~ Noam Chomsky
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23-11-2016, 07:53 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(23-11-2016 06:54 AM)Velvet Wrote:  No, I want to know if it is possible to have any basis to judge or evaluate any act as good or bad, right or wrong, given everything that you just said.
Personal preference and social norms. Who cares if they're not universal?

Quote:And if its not possible then, what we supposed to do with our intuition about evil acts like rape, slavery, racism... discard it all because its just as supported as yesterday's "slavery is right"?
There's no physical basis, no actual reason. But laws have force regardless that the only reason that they have force is because we all behave as if they do. Same as money.

Personally I hope that by using mechanisms such as law, the concept of human rights etc we can build a civilised society where I can enjoy my life, and do so not at the expense of someone else. I like knowledge, I like science, I like music and civilised pursuits. I don't like war, oppression etc. Therefore I am happy to e.g. support a law against rape not because rape has some intrinsic badness to it but because a. it revolts me personally and b. I think a society where rape is legal is inherently going to end as a less safe and civilised society - I like a society where a human right such as bodily autonomy is respected. Because of that I will push for such a society.

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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23-11-2016, 08:06 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(23-11-2016 07:47 AM)Fatbaldhobbit Wrote:  A fair and just society would allow the maximum benefit for the maximum people.

Benefit? what kind of benefit? Happiness you mean? or pleasure? What you mean by this benefit you think it would be wise to maximize as to determine what is a good thing to do?

(23-11-2016 07:47 AM)Fatbaldhobbit Wrote:  Would that not be better than a society where some people had maximum benefits and some people had minimum benefits?
Well... not necessarily, it would be different, why would it be "better"? How can we assume that having a more equal distribution would be better?

Sure it seems better intuitively (for now, the same way as slavery sounded better some time ago), how can we inquiry if it is actually better?

Afterall, natural selection is all about allowing the fittest to survive and the rest to perish... equally distributing everything perfectly wouldn't stale evolution for the human race?...

That which can be destroyed by the truth should be.”
-P.C. Hodgell - Seeker’s Mask - Kirien
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23-11-2016, 08:18 AM (This post was last modified: 23-11-2016 08:23 AM by Velvet.)
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(23-11-2016 07:53 AM)morondog Wrote:  Personal preference and social norms. Who cares if they're not universal?

There's no physical basis, no actual reason. But laws have force regardless that the only reason that they have force is because we all behave as if they do. Same as money.

Well, everyone who wants to be able to condemn slavery should care... otherwise you have to honestly acknowledge that slavery being evil its just your personal opinion, and why should anyone (including you) care for something that its just a personal opinion?

It would be the same as saying someone painted their house with the wrong color, because in your opinion red sucks and its evil.

That which can be destroyed by the truth should be.”
-P.C. Hodgell - Seeker’s Mask - Kirien
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23-11-2016, 08:31 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(23-11-2016 08:18 AM)Velvet Wrote:  
(23-11-2016 07:53 AM)morondog Wrote:  Personal preference and social norms. Who cares if they're not universal?

There's no physical basis, no actual reason. But laws have force regardless that the only reason that they have force is because we all behave as if they do. Same as money.

Well, everyone who wants to be able to condemn slavery should care... otherwise you have to honestly acknowledge that slavery being evil its just your personal opinion, and why should anyone (including you) care for something that its just a personal opinion?

It would be the same as saying someone painted their house with the wrong color, because in your opinion red sucks and its evil.

It becomes more than just your opinion when countries and groups of countries make laws against it and are willing to enforce it.

Slavery still goes on around the world:

Child marriage around the world


I don't think there are too many people in first world countries willing to justify child rape, but there are countries where it is still legal.

You'll find instances of almost every morally repugnant act where it is still legal in certain parts of the world.

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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23-11-2016, 08:39 AM
RE: Where is the Basis for our Judgments?
(23-11-2016 08:18 AM)Velvet Wrote:  
(23-11-2016 07:53 AM)morondog Wrote:  Personal preference and social norms. Who cares if they're not universal?

There's no physical basis, no actual reason. But laws have force regardless that the only reason that they have force is because we all behave as if they do. Same as money.

Well, everyone who wants to be able to condemn slavery should care... otherwise you have to honestly acknowledge that slavery being evil its just your personal opinion, and why should anyone (including you) care for something that its just a personal opinion?

It would be the same as saying someone painted their house with the wrong color, because in your opinion red sucks and its evil.

Why are you afraid to say that? Slavery has been tolerated in the past precisely because people didn't see anything inherently wrong with it. Do you think slave owners loved their families less or were somehow more horrible than other humans?

We revile it now, and again, personally I think it's a load of shit, but admitting that your view is relative doesn't prevent you from holding that view still.

I like the ideal of a society where the individual is free to pursue their own interests, I like that ideal because I am such an individual. If I'd been born in a different time or place the idea of leaving people to selfishly pursue their own pleasure would probably horrify me. Nevertheless my way of thinking is in the ascendant right now.

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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