What could make morality objective?

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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Belinda
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Belinda » Fri Jul 27, 2018 10:39 pm

Peter Holmes wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 9:39 pm
Belinda

I didn't write 'a society is only a collection of individuals'. Please can you amend your post.
I am very sorry for my error, Peter. It was RCSaunders who wrote that. Would you like me to delete my post? I have now amended my post.

Skip
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Skip » Fri Jul 27, 2018 11:34 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 3:17 pm
A society is only a collection of individuals
A philatelic society or a debating society may be a collection of autonomous individuals who choose to associate and share a set of rules for their common activity. But those individuals have lives outside this voluntary association, aka club. That's why they can quit the association without losing their lives, livelihoods or kinship network.
A community is quite different. Individuals are not issued an invitation to join which they can accept or decline. They are not independent and self-sufficient at the time of entry. They are born into the society and - whatever conflicts and disagreements they may later have with its leadership or operating principles - are formed by that society. Some deny their indebtedness; some secede and join another group that's more to their liking; some are expelled or executed. But a society is never collected, never made up of stray individuals that happened to be lying around: it's an organism that lives, grows, changes, reproduces, remembers, has moods, gets sick, gets injured, recovers if it's lucky, dies if it isn't.
When a society or community or tribe does die, its individual members may continue to live as adopted members of another society, or be subsumed by the larger conquering nation, or wander the world in small bands that belong nowhere - but those remnants are still organic, interrelated units (a sub-society), until all of their members are assimilated by a dominant culture.
A society comprised primarily of immoral individuals will be an immoral society,
How could that happen? The leaders would have to go rounding up stray sinners and ask them to join. No, a society loses its moral compass when disagreements and disparities among its members are not addressed in a timely and effective manner; usually when one minority takes over too much of itspower to control and direct. Then more and more members - usually in identifiable groups with some grievance in common - are disaffected, the law no longer commands their respect and they either disobey it as a legal challenge or disregard it as irrelevant.

BTW Slavery is wrong in my society, because a large enough majority of my fellow citizens consider it wrong. Their reasons may not all be the same, and many could not even articulate their reasons, but it's conviction strongly held, and so we made it both a moral tenet and a law. (The logical reason is that slavery is destructive to the social fabric and the economy by setting up artificial barriers, suspicion, fear, resentment and rage; creating a potential for deadly conflict. The emotional reason is that we would not ourselves want to be enslaved. That makes us sympathetic to those who are and insecure in our own freedom.)
If there had ever been a natural, or god-mandated rule against slavery, this conversion would not keep coming around: we would never have invented the institution. But people did, in many varieties in many times and places. I'm not aware of it being absent from any period of written history, and it's still practiced today.

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RCSaunders
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by RCSaunders » Sat Jul 28, 2018 1:08 am

Skip wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 11:34 pm
But a society is never collected,.. it's an organism that lives, grows, changes, reproduces, remembers, has moods, gets sick, gets injured, recovers if it's lucky, dies if it isn't.
That is pure mystic collectivist nonsense. I don't care if you want to believe it, but I do not address astrology, superstition, or mysticism.

Randy

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Necromancer
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Necromancer » Sat Jul 28, 2018 2:33 am

Peter Holmes wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 5:03 pm
Necromancer

You seem not to understand what 'begging the question' means.
Now, I don't acknowledge that I'm begging the question. You seem to ignore the best ethics has to offer, namely Kantian Ethics as objective (or inter-subjective) morality. If I can establish Kantian Moral Psychology and place you accurately with it, also by fMRI (or MRI), metabolism reading, electrometer-off-the-skin nervous system reading and radio-based scanner portal to assist me, ...

...you are nothing but the guy with the head buried into the sand!

You can't go on to pretend you're discussing against this kind of explanatory and investigative power of Kantian Moral Psychology.

I think you need to update or get serious, mister!

Skip
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Skip » Sat Jul 28, 2018 3:41 am

RCSaunders wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 1:08 am
[But a society is never collected,.. it's an organism that lives, grows, changes, reproduces, remembers, has moods, gets sick, gets injured, recovers if it's lucky, dies if it isn't.]

That is pure mystic collectivist nonsense. I don't care if you want to believe it, but I do not address astrology, superstition, or mysticism.
Okay. Show me one society anywhere in history that was collected from independent adults. (Modern Israel comes close, but they were actually some groups of stateless people who identified as Jews wherever they lived before.
Prove that you - or, just to be fair, any libertarian - didn't start out as a pewling helpless infant, with parents and caregivers.
Where, btw, did you get language?

Peter Holmes
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Peter Holmes » Sat Jul 28, 2018 9:44 am

Necromancer wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 2:33 am
Peter Holmes wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 5:03 pm
Necromancer

You seem not to understand what 'begging the question' means.
Now, I don't acknowledge that I'm begging the question. You seem to ignore the best ethics has to offer, namely Kantian Ethics as objective (or inter-subjective) morality. If I can establish Kantian Moral Psychology and place you accurately with it, also by fMRI (or MRI), metabolism reading, electrometer-off-the-skin nervous system reading and radio-based scanner portal to assist me, ...

...you are nothing but the guy with the head buried into the sand!

You can't go on to pretend you're discussing against this kind of explanatory and investigative power of Kantian Moral Psychology.

I think you need to update or get serious, mister!
I think I need this conversation to come to an end. But - one last go.

Please can you provide one deliverance of Kantian Moral Psychology - one moral assertion - that you can show to be objective, without begging the question - which means, without using the premise to support itself?

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Necromancer
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Necromancer » Sat Jul 28, 2018 5:04 pm

Peter Holmes wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 9:44 am
I think I need this conversation to come to an end. But - one last go.

Please can you provide one deliverance of Kantian Moral Psychology - one moral assertion - that you can show to be objective, without begging the question - which means, without using the premise to support itself?
Universe of Discourse (UoD):
Kantian Ethics (see description in Kant's text): A
Ethics that supports all people in terms of sanity, intelligence, health and ability: B
All rules that comply with A and B and which solve all sorts of disputes: C

If A then B - premise
If B then C - premise
A - premise
----------------------
If A then C, by Hypothetical syllogism (HS)
----------------------
C, as conclusion by lines 3, 4, Modus ponens or Conditional elimination

Remarks: There is no problem with Kantian Ethics being expressed as laws and regulations as they then reflect the wishes of the (democratic) majority. One has also the option to live a more strict life with personal Kantian Ethics, of course. Kantian Ethics is not necessarily only public.

So Peter Holmes, why is this supposed to beg the question? Is it only that you can't accept to live by Kantian Ethics, by democratic laws and regulations? I think the burden of defending is on YOU!

(I can recommend The Logic Book by M. Bergmann et al., McGraw Hill Higher Education, 4th ed. and beyond.)

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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Dalek Prime » Sat Jul 28, 2018 5:39 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 1:08 am
Skip wrote:
Fri Jul 27, 2018 11:34 pm
But a society is never collected,.. it's an organism that lives, grows, changes, reproduces, remembers, has moods, gets sick, gets injured, recovers if it's lucky, dies if it isn't.
That is pure mystic collectivist nonsense. I don't care if you want to believe it, but I do not address astrology, superstition, or mysticism.

Randy
I'm not a fan of this either. I am an organism with a unique perspective, not a cell within some loosely knit organism that does not have a personal perspective.

Peter Holmes
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Peter Holmes » Sat Jul 28, 2018 6:08 pm

Necromancer

This begs the question, because it doesn't show WHY it is morally good to '[support] all people in terms of sanity, intelligence, health and ability'. It merely asserts that it is. And that's the problem for moral objectivism. It assumes what it claims. So I repeat: can you suggest a moral assertion that expresses a falsifiable factual claim?

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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Necromancer » Sat Jul 28, 2018 6:59 pm

Peter Holmes wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 6:08 pm
Necromancer

This begs the question, because it doesn't show WHY it is morally good to '[support] all people in terms of sanity, intelligence, health and ability'. It merely asserts that it is. And that's the problem for moral objectivism. It assumes what it claims. So I repeat: can you suggest a moral assertion that expresses a falsifiable factual claim?
That I'm supposed to suggest to you morality as disguised immorality? Or is it that you demand that people get mistreated in every possible way and so to say that "yeah, morality must be necessary" or "yeah, these rules (Human Rights, UDHR?) must be necessary"? This seems absurd. You fail to imagine what (the deepest) immorality brings to people? You need the very most disgusting video tape for it? Or are you merely pointing out some "hair-splitting" problem? I fail to see the significance of your "worry"!

I guess you do know what the consequences are without democratic laws and regulations (public Kantian Ethics)? Do you need the killing fields of Cambodia, the genocide of Stalin, the Holocaust of Adolf Hitler or the craziness of North Korea to realize the need for Kantian Ethics as objective morality?

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RCSaunders
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by RCSaunders » Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:22 pm

Skip wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 3:41 am
Okay. Show me one society anywhere in history that was collected from independent adults. (Modern Israel comes close, but they were actually some groups of stateless people who identified as Jews wherever they lived before.
Skip, I appreciate your interest and questions, which Is why I answer them, but I'm not interested in convincing you of anything. If you want to believe individual humans have no meaning or significance accept in relationship to some kind of collectives, from families, to tribes, to states or societies, that's fine with me.

I cannot possibly have that view. For me, only individuals matter or have value. Every individual has their own mind, must do their own learning, and make their own choices, and the value of every individual is determined by what they make of and do with their own life. That's my view, it doesn't have to be yours.
Prove that you - or, just to be fair, any libertarian - didn't start out as a pewling helpless infant, with parents and caregivers.
The purpose of philosophy is not to win arguments or prove things to others. I'm always glad to answer specific questions. Proof of what you believe must be provided by your own reason.
Where, btw, did you get language?
Which? All those I know I learned by studying them.

Randy

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RCSaunders
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by RCSaunders » Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:27 pm

Dalek Prime wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 5:39 pm
I'm not a fan of this either. I am an organism with a unique perspective, not a cell within some loosely knit organism that does not have a personal perspective.
Exactly. We are all individuals with our own consciousness and mind and each of us must learn, think, and choose for ourselves, and are only responsible for our own choices and behavior. Of course we can choose to deal with and work with others which very often to our advantage and theirs. But it is not others or our relationship to them that determines what we are as individuals.

Randy

Skip
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Skip » Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:29 pm

Dalek Prime wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 5:39 pm
I'm not a fan of this either. I am an organism with a unique perspective, not a cell within some loosely knit organism that does not have a personal perspective.
I never denied your personal perspective. What I reject is the notion that anyone is self-made and independent of environmental, genetic, psychological, social and cultural influences. Also that society is a "collection" rather than an accretion of human beings. Living things are not static, like terracotta figurines: communities of living things are nothing like a display cabinet. People change and their birthing, growing, acting, interacting, successes, arguments and sufferings all change the nature of their community, every living moment. People and societies are in a state of constant flux, constant tension.

Skip
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Skip » Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:52 pm

RCSaunders wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:22 pm
[ Show me one society anywhere in history that was collected from independent adults.]
Skip, I appreciate your interest and questions, which Is why I answer them, but I'm not interested in convincing you of anything.
Oh. So you have none.
If you want to believe individual humans have no meaning or significance accept in relationship
I suppose you meant "except" in relationships. Did I say that? No. I said they don't exist
outside of to some kind of collectives, from families, to tribes, to states or societies,
because they can't exist without previous generations of human beings giving them DNA and life-support.
You posit the individual human being as the primary unit of society, which is a biological impossibility. That could only be true if human beings were custom-created by a god, or manufactured on another planet, and placed on the earth as fully-formed adults, programmed with all necessary survival skills. Then they could form a voluntary association of individuals. But that is not the case.
For me, only individuals matter or have value.
I said nothing about subjective values or what should matter to you. But, as a self-proclaimed rational individual, you ought not to distort the facts to validate your philosophy.
Proof of what you believe must be provided by your own reason.
That would make you a perfectly self-contained egg. I prefer external verification of factual statements.

[Where, btw, did you get language?]
Which? All those I know I learned by studying them.
What? You didn't invent language? The alphabet? Fire? Horticulture? Weaving? Plumbing? Roads?
What else do you use that you didn't invent, didn't create, didn't fabricate, yet deny credit to those who did?

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RCSaunders
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by RCSaunders » Sat Jul 28, 2018 8:33 pm

I"m sorry Skip, but I am convince your objectives are quite disingenuous. This for example.
Skip wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:52 pm
What? You didn't invent language? The alphabet? Fire? Horticulture? Weaving? Plumbing? Roads?
What else do you use that you didn't invent, didn't create, didn't fabricate, yet deny credit to those who did?
Before you begin to criticize others you should be certain of what their views actually are.

No, I didn't invent or create any of those things, but every one of them was produced, created, or discovered by individuals--not groups, collectives, or societies. And I am the first to credit those individuals.

Please see my article, ""Only Individuals," to know why only individuals really matter.

Randy

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