Are You A Garbled Relativist?

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Philosophy Now
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Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by Philosophy Now » Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:01 pm

Ray Prebble argues that moral relativism is both incoherent and immoral.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/124/Are_You_A_Garbled_Relativist

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Eodnhoj7
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by Eodnhoj7 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:20 pm

"This is a very interesting argument, because it is both beguilingly plausible and utterly invalid. The problem is that relativists’ moral statements, such as “One ought not to pass moral judgements on the actions of people from other cultures” are not remotely relative; they are absolute."


Finally someone has observed the obvious.

Londoner
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by Londoner » Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:34 pm

Philosophy Now wrote:
Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:01 pm
Ray Prebble argues that moral relativism is both incoherent and immoral.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/124/Ar ... Relativist
A philosophical argument would have been welcome. Instead it was ad hominem - mostly ad hominem against a variety of straw men! - from start to finish.

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Eodnhoj7
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by Eodnhoj7 » Thu Feb 08, 2018 8:34 pm

Londoner wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:34 pm
Philosophy Now wrote:
Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:01 pm
Ray Prebble argues that moral relativism is both incoherent and immoral.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/124/Ar ... Relativist
A philosophical argument would have been welcome. Instead it was ad hominem - mostly ad hominem against a variety of straw men! - from start to finish.
That is a relativistic approach...what separates the accusation of an ad-hominem from being an ad-hominem in itself?

Londoner
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by Londoner » Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:49 am

Eodnhoj7 wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 8:34 pm
Londoner wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:34 pm
Philosophy Now wrote:
Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:01 pm
Ray Prebble argues that moral relativism is both incoherent and immoral.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/124/Ar ... Relativist
A philosophical argument would have been welcome. Instead it was ad hominem - mostly ad hominem against a variety of straw men! - from start to finish.
That is a relativistic approach...what separates the accusation of an ad-hominem from being an ad-hominem in itself?
Because it is a description of the article, rather than the personal character of the person who wrote it.

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Eodnhoj7
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by Eodnhoj7 » Fri Feb 09, 2018 9:48 pm

Londoner wrote:
Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:49 am
Eodnhoj7 wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 8:34 pm
Londoner wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:34 pm


A philosophical argument would have been welcome. Instead it was ad hominem - mostly ad hominem against a variety of straw men! - from start to finish.
That is a relativistic approach...what separates the accusation of an ad-hominem from being an ad-hominem in itself?
Because it is a description of the article, rather than the personal character of the person who wrote it.
And work is not personal?

Paul Austin Murphy
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by Paul Austin Murphy » Sat Feb 10, 2018 6:23 am

It could be that to some (there are almost zero self-described "relativists") relativism is simply a normative/moral/political theory or position; rather than a theory of truth. Philosophers like Richard Rorty and, in a roundabout way, even William James, came close to arguing that. In other words, such people believe that it would be a good thing (morally/ethically) to be a relativist. That may mean that they know, in their heart of hearts (Rorty certainly knew), that relativism does indeed trap itself (at least when formulated as a statement) in all the self-contradictions mentioned in this piece. Still, relativism may be an attitude or position, rather than a theory of truth.

Nonetheless, this position faces the same problem which faced William James (again) and Wittgenstein when it came to religion or monotheism. That is, people don't believe in religion x or in God because it's morally efficacious to do so. They believe in religion x/God because they believe in x/God. That is, they believe that the statements of religion x are true or that God exists. Full stop. They may accept that religion x or monotheism lead to positive moral/societal consequences; though that's not why they believe that God exists or in the truths of religion x. (All this is also related to Plato's "Euthyphro dilemma"). Similarly with relativism. Perhaps it simply won't work to say that relativism "will enable us to live and let live" (let's say, for argument's sake, that it does) if, in the end, the relativist knows very well that... truths are not relative.

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Noax
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by Noax » Sat Feb 10, 2018 2:19 pm

Londoner wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:34 pm
A philosophical argument would have been welcome. Instead it was ad hominem - mostly ad hominem against a variety of straw men! - from start to finish.
I see what you means. It is indeed full of strawman, begging, and emotional arguments. Even the title is an ad-hom.
Paul Austin Murphy wrote:
Sat Feb 10, 2018 6:23 am
It could be that to some (there are almost zero self-described "relativists") relativism is simply a normative/moral/political theory or position; rather than a theory of truth. Philosophers like Richard Rorty and, in a roundabout way, even William James, came close to arguing that. In other words, such people believe that it would be a good thing (morally/ethically) to be a relativist. That may mean that they know, in their heart of hearts (Rorty certainly knew), that relativism does indeed trap itself (at least when formulated as a statement) in all the self-contradictions mentioned in this piece. Still, relativism may be an attitude or position, rather than a theory of truth.
I probably would describe myself as one, finding almost everything to be a relation, including truth. I haven't thought it through well so perhaps I can be trapped by this statement, but not by the way the article goes about it.
Nonetheless, this position faces the same problem which faced William James (again) and Wittgenstein when it came to religion or monotheism. That is, people don't believe in religion x or in God because it's morally efficacious to do so. They believe in religion x/God because they believe in x/God. That is, they believe that the statements of religion x are true or that God exists. Full stop. They may accept that religion x or monotheism lead to positive moral/societal consequences; though that's not why they believe that God exists or in the truths of religion x.
I find this a point in favor of relativism. The stance does not need to reach outside the natural to ground its morals. They're grounded in something more real.
Perhaps it simply won't work to say that relativism "will enable us to live and let live" (let's say, for argument's sake, that it does) if, in the end, the relativist knows very well that... truths are not relative.
This begs fact that "enable us to live and let live" is an absolute moral. Some cultures might not hold to this moral, and sans absolutism, they'd not be wrong about it necessarily.

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A_Seagull
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by A_Seagull » Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:16 am

Philosophy Now wrote:
Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:01 pm
Ray Prebble argues that moral relativism is both incoherent and immoral.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/124/Ar ... Relativist
Morality is nothing more than propaganda. Dr. Prebble doesn't seem to understand that.

jayjacobus
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by jayjacobus » Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:50 pm

A_Seagull wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:16 am
Philosophy Now wrote:
Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:01 pm
Ray Prebble argues that moral relativism is both incoherent and immoral.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/124/Ar ... Relativist
Morality is nothing more than propaganda. Dr. Prebble doesn't seem to understand that.
Propaganda is information with a bias. I think Dr. Prebble knows that because he writes,

"Morality must, in the end, be about arguing, and giving reasons, and providing evidence. It cannot just be about being who your culture encourages you to be."

He seems to be saying, "Don't just accept would you have been told (the propaganda in your word). Think about it."

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Eodnhoj7
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Re: Are You A Garbled Relativist?

Post by Eodnhoj7 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 7:33 pm

jayjacobus wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:50 pm
A_Seagull wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:16 am
Philosophy Now wrote:
Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:01 pm
Ray Prebble argues that moral relativism is both incoherent and immoral.

https://philosophynow.org/issues/124/Ar ... Relativist
Morality is nothing more than propaganda. Dr. Prebble doesn't seem to understand that.
Propaganda is information with a bias. I think Dr. Prebble knows that because he writes,

"Morality must, in the end, be about arguing, and giving reasons, and providing evidence. It cannot just be about being who your culture encourages you to be."

He seems to be saying, "Don't just accept would you have been told (the propaganda in your word). Think about it."
It could be implied from this that the moral constant is the application of reason as a form of justification. Under these terms, morality is based upon an inherent metaphysics premised on the nature of measurement and symmetry.

Under these premises, it may be implied that morality as measurement is conducive to an observation of:

1) Stability through symmetry inherently mirroring dimensions
2) Change through the relations of dimensions which relate to other dimensions as unit-parts.
3) The synthesis of dimensions conducive to this stability and change.

Although the above three points may need further elaboration to give them justice, morality may have a trifold nature of "Constant", "Relativistic" and "Synthetic".

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