moral relativism

Should you think about your duty, or about the consequences of your actions? Or should you concentrate on becoming a good person?

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FlashDangerpants
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Re: moral relativism

Post by FlashDangerpants »

henry quirk wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 2:18 am Cleaning out my drafts folder I found this...

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It's always your taproot -- philosophy of life -- isn't it?
Yep. It works for anyone and everyone who tries it. It's the ethic you claimed you were lookin' for.

Of course, it's clear you weren't lookin' for an ethic, but just an excuse.

Bubba, you're the sittin' at a crossroads a'fear'd to choose, resentful cuz other folks can and do.

I gave you an ethic and the factual undergirdin' for that ethic. It hobbles you in only one way: it asks that you recognize your life, liberty, and property are yours and the life, liberty, and property of the other guy are his and that neither of you have any claim on the other's life, liberty, and property.

Practically: it means don't murder, don't slave, don't rape, don't steal.

You reject it cuz such an ethic allows me to own a bazooka and doesn't allow Marty to kill her baby solely cuz he's inconvenient.

You refuse to examine the ethic or its undergirdin' (sumthin' I'm up for) preferrin' instead to analyze me (sumthin' I won't participate in).

The ethic and its undergirdin' are not me: there's no need to probe me to understand them.
-----

...apparently I had a notion for a post, but -- for whatever reason -- I didn't finish.
Perhaps you didn't post it because you do a bunch of name calling and then tell your victim to argue the case not the man. You might have had a moment of reflection and not hit submit.

The most obvious reason to not go with your theory is that it can only support judgement against that which can be reduced to a property crime, and thus it is neutral on anything that cannot. Lies, greed, and abuses of power are things that we normally consider bad without having to distort them into some property-damage effect first.
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henry quirk
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Re: moral relativism

Post by henry quirk »

*The most obvious reason to not go with your theory is that it can only support judgement against that which can be reduced to a property crime, and thus it is neutral on anything that cannot. **Lies, greed, and abuses of power are things that we normally consider bad without having to distort them into some property-damage effect first.
*And that covers it all: if you're murdered, slaved, raped, or robbed your first, best property (yourself; your life, liberty, property) has been interfered with or stolen.

**You see distortion, I see clarity. Lies are told to profit. Greed by itself is just an emotion. An abuse of power is usually a violation of contract which is nuthin' but thievery.
FlashDangerpants
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Re: moral relativism

Post by FlashDangerpants »

henry quirk wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 1:45 pm
*The most obvious reason to not go with your theory is that it can only support judgement against that which can be reduced to a property crime, and thus it is neutral on anything that cannot. **Lies, greed, and abuses of power are things that we normally consider bad without having to distort them into some property-damage effect first.
*And that covers it all: if you're murdered, slaved, raped, or robbed your first, best property (yourself; your life, liberty, property) has been interfered with or stolen.

**You see distortion, I see clarity. Lies are told to profit. Greed by itself is just an emotion. An abuse of power is usually a violation of contract which is nuthin' but thievery.
Is it that lies are only bad if told to gain property, or is anything harmed in a lie property with value?
One option covers what you need there, but that one gives you a problematically circular argument.

Is greed a bad or a good emotion?
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henry quirk
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Re: moral relativism

Post by henry quirk »

Is it that lies are only bad if told to gain property
Give me an example of a lie that is not an attempt to profit.

Why do folks lie?

To steal sumthin', to cover a theft, to injure another (the profit here may be schadenfreude).
or is anything harmed in a lie property with value?
What?
Is greed a bad or a good emotion?
Is hate good or bad, or is good or bad only found in the action it motivates?

We think love is noble, but if it motivates a fella to hold his beloved hostage has it soured, gone bad? Do we condemn that fella cuz he loved wrong, or do we condemn him for his act?

Greed (nuthin' but desire) can motivate a person to bust his hump to legally provide for himself. Has his desire poisoned his actions? That he busted his hump out of desire instead of a finer emotion, does this negate that he's takin' care of himself? Is the altruist on the dole better than the greedy self-relier? Doesn't seem to me greed or any emotion automatically leads to a particular result. So: greed is neither good or bad.
Iwannaplato
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Re: moral relativism

Post by Iwannaplato »

FlashDangerpants wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 2:02 pm Is greed a bad or a good emotion?
Tangential reaction: I don't think greed is an emotion. There are likely to be emotions involved: anxiety, desire, shame. So, to avoid the unpleasant emotions or those associated with not getting what one desires, one has a schema (set of thoughts) that have a Lambourgini, mansion, the power that money brings, etc., will prevent these emotions, reduce them.

So, partly greed arise very much from thoughts and can have various emotions involved. It's a batch of cognitive phenomena. Unlike anger say, which can even be triggered with no thoughts involved. Someone screams at you while you are sleeping and you get pissed off.
FlashDangerpants
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Re: moral relativism

Post by FlashDangerpants »

henry quirk wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 2:27 pm
Is it that lies are only bad if told to gain property
Give me an example of a lie that is not an attempt to profit.

Why do folks lie?

To steal sumthin', to cover a theft, to injure another (the profit here may be schadenfreude).
or is anything harmed in a lie property with value?
What?
Any gratuitous lie told just to hurt somebody's feelings is bad, but it's not for profit.
henry quirk wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 2:27 pm
Is greed a bad or a good emotion?
Is hate good or bad, or is good or bad only found in the action it motivates?

We think love is noble, but if it motivates a fella to hold his beloved hostage has it soured, gone bad? Do we condemn that fella cuz he loved wrong, or do we condemn him for his act?

Greed (nuthin' but desire) can motivate a person to bust his hump to legally provide for himself. Has his desire poisoned his actions? That he busted his hump out of desire instead of a finer emotion, does this negate that he's takin' care of himself? Is the altruist on the dole better than the greedy self-relier? Doesn't seem to me greed or any emotion automatically leads to a particular result. So: greed is neither good or bad.
Greed is a judgment we make about ourselves and others, usually regarding motivation as a whole. It's pretty much always a negative one, as is laziness, or arrogance.

You guys love to prove that murder and rape are bad, but those already have badness built into them before you start, they are the expressions of a judgement prior to even raising the question of doing the judging. But you guys just love awarding yourselves honours for proving that murder (wrongful killing) is bad even after you were notfied of this problem. So now prove that greed (intense and selfish desire for something) is bad. Or that selfishness is bad, and then greed can follow right along with it.
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henry quirk
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Re: moral relativism

Post by henry quirk »

Any gratuitous lie told just to hurt somebody's feelings is bad, but it's not for profit.
If Joe tells a self-conscious Jan her ass is fat, and then enjoys her discomfort, he hasn't profited?
Greed is a judgment we make about ourselves and others, usually regarding motivation as a whole. It's pretty much always a negative one, as is laziness, or arrogance.
I reckon -- unlike say, rape -- greed, laziness, arrogance are in the eye of the beholder.
You guys love to prove that murder and rape are bad, but those already have badness built into them before you start, they are the expressions of a judgement prior to even raising the question of doing the judging.
Interestng, then, how you guys -- when I ask is slavery wrong? -- never get around to actually answerin' the question.
But you guys just love awarding yourselves honours for proving that murder (wrongful killing) is bad even after you were notfied of this problem.
Folks like you have done no notifyin'. Again: I can't even get a simple yes or no out of any of you about sumthin' as simple as your own self-possession.
So now prove that greed (intense and selfish desire for something) is bad. Or that selfishness is bad, and then greed can follow right along with it.
Nope. I don't believe greed is, in itself, bad. You seem to. So: you prove it.
FlashDangerpants
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Re: moral relativism

Post by FlashDangerpants »

henry quirk wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 2:27 pm
or is anything harmed in a lie property with value?
What?
See this is what I was talking about there. Now I have to deal with the notion that Joe profits in some way by calling somebody's ass fat. That is nonsense that you had to cook up to try and make lying bad under the painfully artificial system you have created. So now the feelings that this Jan person has about her bum hole are some sort of property, like the contents of a wallet.

You've taken a circular path where instead of using your thing to establish what is right and wrong, you have used your beliefs about right and wrong to try and establish what is property.
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henry quirk
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Re: moral relativism

Post by henry quirk »

I see what you're talkin' about, and you're right. I've taken demonstrable wrong (as in what we have with murder, slavery, rape, and theft) and attempted to apply it to feelings which are subjective.

Good catch: I stand corrected.
FlashDangerpants
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Re: moral relativism

Post by FlashDangerpants »

henry quirk wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 7:58 pm I see what you're talkin' about, and you're right. I've taken demonstrable wrong (as in what we have with murder, slavery, rape, and theft) and attempted to apply it to feelings which are subjective.

Good catch: I stand corrected.
Interesting, it's hard to predict what comes next when somebody on the internet changes their mind as there is very little data available for such rare events. But I'm going to guess that this does not result in Henry joining the league of the moral skepticals?

Technically moral realism only needs to hold that some moral assertions count as knowledge, so there's nothing automatically wrong with divvying it up into morals and manners with the latter being a big bucket for the holding of all the subjective locally variable stuff. VA can't have that move because he's staked everything on his moral adventures being some sort of "near equivalent" to science and so he needs to live with that all the way. But you have more flexible options as far as I can see.
Peter Holmes
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Re: moral relativism

Post by Peter Holmes »

FlashDangerpants wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 1:56 pm
henry quirk wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 7:58 pm I see what you're talkin' about, and you're right. I've taken demonstrable wrong (as in what we have with murder, slavery, rape, and theft) and attempted to apply it to feelings which are subjective.

Good catch: I stand corrected.
Interesting, it's hard to predict what comes next when somebody on the internet changes their mind as there is very little data available for such rare events. But I'm going to guess that this does not result in Henry joining the league of the moral skepticals?

Technically moral realism only needs to hold that some moral assertions count as knowledge, so there's nothing automatically wrong with divvying it up into morals and manners with the latter being a big bucket for the holding of all the subjective locally variable stuff.
Also interesting. An obvious counter is: what's the criterion for distinguishing morals from manners - moral assertions that make factual claims with truth-value ('true'), and those that merely express opinions? And is that criterion objective?

In other words, I don't think there's a get-out here - not that you're suggesting there is, I know. The claim that there are any moral facts at all is the problem.
Skepdick
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Re: moral relativism

Post by Skepdick »

Peter Holmes wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 3:19 pm Also interesting. An obvious counter is: what's the criterion for distinguishing morals from manners - moral assertions that make factual claims with truth-value ('true'), and those that merely express opinions? And is that criterion objective?

In other words, I don't think there's a get-out here - not that you're suggesting there is, I know. The claim that there are any moral facts at all is the problem.
Oh look! Peter is on the verge of figuring out that all distinctions hinge upon criteria synthesized by the dinstinguisher. Even the objective/subjective distinction.

Too bad he wants to have his cake and eat it too in maintaining that the subjective/objective distinction is subjective, but the stuff that goes into the category we call "objective" isn't.
FlashDangerpants
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Re: moral relativism

Post by FlashDangerpants »

Peter Holmes wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 3:19 pm
FlashDangerpants wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 1:56 pm
henry quirk wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 7:58 pm I see what you're talkin' about, and you're right. I've taken demonstrable wrong (as in what we have with murder, slavery, rape, and theft) and attempted to apply it to feelings which are subjective.

Good catch: I stand corrected.
Interesting, it's hard to predict what comes next when somebody on the internet changes their mind as there is very little data available for such rare events. But I'm going to guess that this does not result in Henry joining the league of the moral skepticals?

Technically moral realism only needs to hold that some moral assertions count as knowledge, so there's nothing automatically wrong with divvying it up into morals and manners with the latter being a big bucket for the holding of all the subjective locally variable stuff.
Also interesting. An obvious counter is: what's the criterion for distinguishing morals from manners - moral assertions that make factual claims with truth-value ('true'), and those that merely express opinions? And is that criterion objective?

In other words, I don't think there's a get-out here - not that you're suggesting there is, I know. The claim that there are any moral facts at all is the problem.
Henry is sometimes unpredictable, he may go an entirely different way. He might decide that the right to exclusive use of one's own property is not the only thing that comes from this self-ownership principle. It's a rights and duties thing, he probably wants there to be duties such as the duty not to lie, but he has been attempting to derive them solely from the property rights of affected user, which was the what gifted me the angle of attack I used earlier.

But if you have some additional duty beyond simple observation of other people's property rights, then that could potentially fix Henry's issue without bifurcating into morals vs manners. Or rather without doing so at such a worrying junction as whether lying is naughty or not. Spitting on the sidewalk and chewing with your mouth open are more the level where we expect to get into talk of manners.
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henry quirk
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Re: moral relativism

Post by henry quirk »

Flash,
Interesting, it's hard to predict what comes next when somebody on the internet changes their mind as there is very little data available for such rare events.
Your memory is poor: you, yes, you, were the catalyst for my changin' my mind/amendin' my thinkin' twice before. Do you remember those two times?
But I'm going to guess that this does not result in Henry joining the league of the moral skepticals?
No, of course not.

Fact: a man belongs to himself; his life, liberty, and property are his.

Moral fact, extendin' out from the fact above: it's wrong, without just cause, to deprive a man, in part or whole, of his life, liberty, or property.
FlashDangerpants
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Re: moral relativism

Post by FlashDangerpants »

henry quirk wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 6:18 pm Flash,
Interesting, it's hard to predict what comes next when somebody on the internet changes their mind as there is very little data available for such rare events.
Your memory is poor: you, yes, you, were the catalyst for my changin' my mind/amendin' my thinkin' twice before. Do you remember those two times?
I remember one was about appropriation of private property by the state where we were on opposite sides in the unexpected way with me on the libertarian and you on the authoritarian one. I think the question of Austrianness came up, which is always an odd thing in any conversation.
henry quirk wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 6:18 pm
But I'm going to guess that this does not result in Henry joining the league of the moral skepticals?
No, of course not.

Fact: a man belongs to himself; his life, liberty, and property are his.

Moral fact, extendin' out from the fact above: it's wrong, without just cause, to deprive a man, in part or whole, of his life, liberty, or property.
We were speculating how you might revisit the question of lies and whether they are bad or not. I'm wondering if you have abandoned a very specific argument that lies are wrong as a form of stealing, or are putting lies into some category of wrongness that's more informal than theft is. Or something else not predicted?
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