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Thread: Morality and ethics: what are your values and why?

  1. #31
    Super Senior Member Delphinus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    Delphinus: You fail to answer my question. Where do you draw the line? How do you determine who deserves to be part of that minority who can break the law?
    It really doesn't matter so long as the prevalence of crime remains low. Choose it randomly, by lot, by the amount of money people have, by any arbitrary measure, I really don't care. Whoever wants to can break the law - but they should still be hunted down and punished by the appropriate authorities. Thus, only those who are able to break the law and avoid punishment are allowed to commit crimes. That could include rich people, intelligent people, or people with good social connections. Those without can burn, which keeps crime rate low and is incidentally how law enforcement currently works.

    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia
    What gives you more right to commit crime A than the next person?
    Why do we need to be granted the right to break the law? Insofar as we have the ability to do something, we have the right to do it.

    You see, you can't simultaneously break and maintain law. That results in legal inequality, which defeats the purpose of distinct, individual rights... I have no doubt a state //would// fall under that system because it is innately unfair. Luckily, our government doesn't work like that.
    What makes you assume unfair systems are doomed? The Roman Empire lasted over 1,000 years, longer than the whole of Capitalist and Enlightenment ideology, and yet it was massively unfair by modern standards. On the other hand, supposedly 'fair' Soviet Russia lasted less than a century. Fairness does not equal stability, ideologically convenient as that would be for you.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fenn
    You forgot your F in Modesty.

  2. #32
    Sir-Mass-a-Lot Sylux's Avatar
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    No one has the right to commit a victimized crime. I do not care if you have money or you are the most intelligent person in your city, you cannot take away the rights and liberties of others for your own selfish gain. But, really, are there any victimless crimes?

  3. #33
    Super Senior Member CypressDahlia's Avatar
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    Well said, Sylux.

    Also, "fairness" is relative to the time, Delphinus. In retrospect, old societies seem unfair to us because we have been subscribing to progressivist values for so long. Fairness and equality have been advertised to us ever since the second we opened our eyes. But, back then, I'm sure what appeals to us today as unfair may have been widely accepted and even condoned. Womens' suffrage didn't become an issue until the 1920's. In a long history of parliamentary governments, think about how long it took for the concept of "women voting" to register with us. Get what I'm saying?

    In short, the only reason the Roman empire seems "unfair" to us is because of the beliefs our era. But going back to that state of "unfairness" at this stage? Impossible. You cannot possibly wean our society, which has been wet nursed on the concepts of equality in all aspects, of said equality this late into the game. That's why it's doomed to fail. Imagine taking women's suffrage away? You can't. Not AFTER the fact.
    Last edited by CypressDahlia; 04-21-2011 at 02:03 PM.

  4. #34
    One Thousand Member butternut's Avatar
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    It depends on how you think, and on your values and morals. My first reaction was Acquitted(because the guy was going to die anyway, and the other 4 just killed him early and ensured their chances of survival. But when I thought about it, I decided they should be Convicted(becuase no man has the right to take someone else's life, and the guy had opted out too).

    I find this similar to whether criminals(read: murderers) should be executed or not.

  5. #35
    Super Senior Member Delphinus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylux View Post
    No one has the right to commit a victimized crime. I do not care if you have money or you are the most intelligent person in your city, you cannot take away the rights and liberties of others for your own selfish gain.
    Why not? This is philosophy and ethics, not "say something is true without justifying it". Why do other people have to be 'respected'? What's so great about equality? Why shouldn't I make others my tools? Give me a single good reason that's not based on the Bible or some primitive concept of natural law. I challenge you. And enlightened self-interest isn't going to cut it, either.

    You cannot possibly wean our society, which has been wet nursed on the concepts of equality in all aspects, of said equality this late into the game.
    Ridiculous. Of course you can: the idea of Divine Right and theological rule was displaced by liberalism despite existing for 3,000 years beforehand and being widely accepted amongst the population, taught in myths and childhood stories, etc.: why are freedom and equality (the cornerstones of liberalism) such unassailable concepts? All that would be required to do so is social change of a similar sort to that that's accompanied any ideological shift. On that note, though, I do believe in freedom - absolute personal freedom, in fact - just not in equality. People are not equal - some are better suited for wielding power in society than others. Would you allow children the vote? No? Then they're not equal to adults, are they? Would you allow a violently schizophrenic man to interact with normal society? No? Then he's not being treated equally to someone without any mental health conditions, is he? Equality is a myth and an excellent bullshit story for politicians to sell to the naive.

    To wit, this song. The lyrics sum it up perfectly: "Political scientists get the same one vote as some Arkansas inbred. Majority rule don't work in mental institutions; sometimes the smallest softest voice carries the grand biggest solutions."

    Also, "fairness" is relative to the time, Delphinus. (etc.)
    I know. It's not hard to understand.
    Last edited by Delphinus; 04-21-2011 at 03:00 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fenn
    You forgot your F in Modesty.

  6. #36
    Super Senior Member CypressDahlia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Delphinus View Post
    Why do other people have to be 'respected'?
    Because you live in a society that ensures that you, yourself are respected. It's standardized, at this point. Hell, look at the rules of this forum. I respect you because it's a standard to respect every member. But hey, if you wanna give me the "okay" on treating you like shit, I will have no qualms. Just don't expect the rest of us to relinquish our entitlements just because you don't believe in them.

    Of course you can: the idea of Divine Right and theological rule was displaced by liberalism despite existing for 3,000 years beforehand and being widely accepted amongst the population, taught in myths and childhood stories, etc.: why are freedom and equality (the cornerstones of liberalism) such unassailable concepts?
    It's not that they're unassailable, Delphinus. It's that they've already been put into practice. What you're saying is: "Look, society can change. We replaced [worse system A] with [better system B]." I'm saying we can't do that in reverse because our current system ensures the greatest level of equality among its people in comparison. At this point, the average person has so many entitlements and benefits and they're probably not willing to give them up.

    In other words: we can't go BACKWARDS on Progressivism because it cuts the majority of people a shitty deal. And nobody wants a shitty deal.

    People are not equal - some are better suited for wielding power in society than others...Would you allow a violently schizophrenic man to interact with normal society? No? Then he's not being treated equally to someone without any mental health conditions, is he?
    Naturally, but it's the law's job to ensure that they're as equal as possible. A bill isn't going to cure Asperger's, man. You are talking about things that are completely out of anyone's control.

    Would you allow children the vote? No? Then they're not equal to adults, are they?
    lolwut? Of course they are, considering children become adults... o_O It's not like children will never have the opportunity to vote, or like adults were never children at one point. So, yeah, they do have equal opportunity. Lol.

  7. #37
    Super Senior Member Delphinus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    Because you live in a society that ensures that you, yourself are respected.
    I meant it more philosophically than that. What is the benefit of respecting others to the individual, other than a mutual consensus? This links back to what I was saying about anyone having the right to break the law: so long as the general consensus to respect others or obey the law is upheld, isolated cases of disobedience should be fine. You can say "What if everyone did that?" in response (as you have been doing), but my reply would be "Everyone does not do that."

    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    I'm saying we can't do that in reverse because our current system ensures the greatest level of equality among its people in comparison...
    In other words: we can't go BACKWARDS on Progressivism because it cuts the majority of people a shitty deal. And nobody wants a shitty deal.
    Yes, but like I said equality is a myth. You're analysing the merit of a system based on equality from the perspective of someone who's already accepted that equality is a proper and good aim to strive towards, which is begging the question somewhat. Lack of equality in and of itself doesn't need to give most people a raw deal: for example, it's easy to imagine a wealthy society where only a well-educated upper class hold political power but where they spend the majority of the wealth of the nation on public projects like housing etc. This is basically the model of an authoritarian society like Nazi Germany; despite restricting freedom and abolishing equality, most Germans benefited under Hitler - he saved Germany from total economic collapse (which was how he was elected in the first place) and restored the heavily-damaged German army to its former glory. Now, equality and freedom are raped under that sort of system, but that doesn't mean most people don't benefit.

    Also, you assume I want to go back to the former systems: I don't, I favour a highly original type of government that's built on existentialist and anarchist principles - it can be called broadly right-wing libertarian, but that doesn't do it justice because it incorporates a lot of left-wing ideas while supporting the free market.

    lolwut? Of course they are, considering children become adults... o_O It's not like children will never have the opportunity to vote, or like adults were never children at one point. So, yeah, they do have equal opportunity. Lol.
    I meant at that particular moment in time, and the reason children don't have the vote is because they don't have the mental capacity to make an informed choice about it. So why do we allow adults with equally ill-informed opinions as small children the vote just because of their age? Oh yeah, because of the myth of equality. I repeat: not all adults (a significant minority, perhaps pushing towards a slight majority) are worthy of the privileges they are granted in being allowed to hold the vote.

    Why does a political scientist get the same one vote as some Arkansas inbred?
    Last edited by Delphinus; 04-21-2011 at 04:14 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fenn
    You forgot your F in Modesty.

  8. #38
    Fenn
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    Delphinus...

    Um, what the hell? I'm agreeing with you on all of this. How depressing.

    Here's a reminder for everyone: there are NO objective morals. NONE. Any moral you claim is necessary must be proven necessary.

  9. #39
    Super Senior Member CypressDahlia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Delphinus View Post
    ...so long as the general consensus to respect others or obey the law is upheld, isolated cases of disobedience should be fine.
    And I'm telling you this doesn't work because you are exempting yourself from a law that you expect everyone else to uphold. You defeat the purpose of the law. Furthermore, who decides which people should break the law and which people shouldn't? Your reasoning is about as good as saying "because I can".

    Stuff about Germany...
    Again, the argument is not whether or not it's beneficial, it's whether or not it's possible, or even plausible. And I still say no. At this point, the government has essentially given "the people" the whole ruler. How the hell do you propose they take it back without mass rioting, rebellion and a Civil War? So, again, I repeat: you can't go backwards on Progressivism. At least, not without a huge struggle that puts not only the governed but the governing body in jeopardy.

    I don't, I favour a highly original type of government that's built on existentialist and anarchist principles - it can be called broadly right-wing libertarian, but that doesn't do it justice because it incorporates a lot of left-wing ideas while supporting the free market.
    Oh Christ.

    I meant at that particular moment in time, and the reason children don't have the vote is because they don't have the mental capacity to make an informed choice about it...
    Neither did the adults who currently can vote, 18 years prior. I still don't see what the hell you're getting at, dude. It's not inequality when everyone is presented with the //same opportunity//. The children will have to wait 18 years to vote, just like the adults before them did, and the ones before them, so forth and so forth. What is so "unequal" about that? And it's not like the age requirement is entirely arbitrary, either. Actually, it's //hardly// arbitrary.

    ...not all adults are worthy of the privileges they are granted in being allowed to hold the vote.
    Who are you to decide that? Lol. Among 300 million people you think you can determine who's "mentally prepared" to vote based purely on intuition? Get in control of your megalomania, dude. Besides, platforms don't necessarily have to be assessed from the perspective of a scholar. The candidates the people choose to elect are ones they think will suit //their// needs (that's the point). So even an Arkansas inbred who thinks bubblegum costs too much at the 7-11 will tell you he's voting for the guy who's dropping prices on bubblegum. All in all, you don't have to be a genius to vote.

    Why does a political scientist get the same one vote as some Arkansas inbred?
    Because of the equality you claim doesn't exist. Lol.

  10. #40
    Super Senior Member Delphinus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    And I'm telling you this doesn't work because you are exempting yourself from a law that you expect everyone else to uphold.
    Yes, I know, it creates inequality if some go beyond the law and others don't. Equality is an antiquated ideal.

    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    You defeat the purpose of the law. Furthermore, who decides which people should break the law and which people shouldn't? Your reasoning is about as good as saying "because I can".
    Like I said, it doesn't matter as long as the value consensus remains intact. Maintaining a modern justice system will mean that crime is kept low even when people break the law as a matter of course: this is a case of personal ethics rather than social ethics. The laws and such would not change to accommodate lawbreakers, but the attitude of an individual would be that they can disobey or obey the law as they see fit to serve their needs. Crime would remain low but the attitude towards crime would be vastly different.

    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    Again, the argument is not whether or not it's beneficial, it's whether or not it's possible, or even plausible. And I still say no. At this point, the government has essentially given "the people" the whole ruler. How the hell do you propose they take it back without mass rioting, rebellion and a Civil War? So, again, I repeat: you can't go backwards on Progressivism. At least, not without a huge struggle that puts not only the governed but the governing body in jeopardy.
    I'm not talking about going backwards on progressivism, I'm talking about going beyond it. Progressivism is purely and simply wrong because it claims that liberty and equality are fundamental rights (mostly derived from Christianity). Going backwards on progressivism would just mean using a different arbitrary set of values to base a government on: I'm talking about using the fact that there are no objective ethical facts to create a completely new type of government that is based on pragmatism and the core of the social contract (a state is only legitimate if it benefits its people beyond total anarchy). So again, nothing is being "taken back" - this is progress (aha) from progressive ethics. Modern political philosophy is by and large based on Enlightenment-era ideas; I'm saying it should be based instead on the rejection of objective moral facts that existentialism, nihilism, absurdism, etc. gave us.

    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    Oh Christ.
    Deal.

    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    Neither did the adults who currently can vote, 18 years prior. I still don't see what the hell you're getting at, dude. It's not inequality when everyone is presented with the //same opportunity//. The children will have to wait 18 years to vote, just like the adults before them did, and the ones before them, so forth and so forth. What is so "unequal" about that? And it's not like the age requirement is entirely arbitrary, either. Actually, it's //hardly// arbitrary.
    Because when some children are 'too young' to vote, they can easily be smarter than plenty of adults who are plenty old enough to vote. Age is a terrible way to determine maturity: I've seen 40-year-old men with more stupid hangups than some young teenagers. The majority of supporters of far-right parties, at least in the UK, are not educated enough to form an opinion beyond "HOMOS CREEP ME OUT" and "BLOODY IMMIGRANTS TAKING OUR JOBS". Case in point: The Sun is the biggest-selling newspaper in the UK. It's also well-known for peddling bullshit stories, pure propaganda, and 'interest' stories that serve as undercover propaganda for whichever political party the owners of the paper are aligned with at the time of publication. Do you honestly think that many of those Sun readers are informed enough to make a vote helping the economic, diplomatic, and international statuses of the UK? On the other hand, a particularly well-read schoolchild could easily have the basic knowledge of politics required to make a moderately informed vote. Yet the law still accounts by age rather than by merit. That's only superficial equality, and underlying it all is the simple fact that those Sun readers hold more power than those smart kids despite the smart kids being their obvious superiors.

    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    Who are you to decide that? Lol. Among 300 million people you think you can determine who's "mentally prepared" to vote based purely on intuition? Get in control of your megalomania, dude. Besides, platforms don't necessarily have to be assessed from the perspective of a scholar. The candidates the people choose to elect are ones they think will suit //their// needs (that's the point). So even an Arkansas inbred who thinks bubblegum costs too much at the 7-11 will tell you he's voting for the guy who's dropping prices on bubblegum. All in all, you don't have to be a genius to vote.
    ...you honestly think someone voting on the basis of bubblegum prices is justifiable? He could be voting for Dr. Doom of the CRUSH EM ALL party, for all you know - and you're claiming that someone dumb enough to vote for Dr. Doom should be politically equal to a lecturer on politics at, say, Harvard? Are you insane?

    Quote Originally Posted by CypressDahlia View Post
    Because of the equality you claim doesn't exist. Lol.
    That equality is invented by people, it's not a natural law. And it's an insane lie.

    EDIT: Kodos asks this question for you regarding democracy/equality, Cyp:

    "You are sick. You tell your friend who is a highly likable person, but rather uneducated and, worse, just not very bright. He says he thinks you have illness X. You then see a doctor and he says you have illness Y.

    Do you attach equal importance to both diagnoses?"

    And another one:

    "We require people have qualifications before they are allowed to practice law or medicine. Similar licenses are required for police officers, architects, andmore. We understand that complex tasks require complex knowledge. Are you saying that running a country is less complex?"

    EDIT #2: This is a quick one, but: "Nietzsche saw democracy and Christianity as the same emasculating impulse which sought to make all equal—to make all slaves."
    I'm not alone in my sentiments.
    Last edited by Delphinus; 04-21-2011 at 07:34 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fenn
    You forgot your F in Modesty.

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