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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Skepdick
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Skepdick »

Peter Holmes wrote: Mon Oct 26, 2020 9:56 am And you are presumptuous. I've both witnessed and experienced suffering, and I definitely prefer well-being and happiness. But your - and VA's and the Dick's argument - that if we don't want something it's a fact that it's morally wrong - is utterly fatuous and demonstrably unsound.
Is it a fact that my argument is "demonstrably unsound" or is it just your opinion?

A judgment. A metaphysical delusion.

Point at the "unsoundness". Let me see it.
KLewchuk
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by KLewchuk »

Peter Holmes wrote: Mon Oct 26, 2020 9:56 am
KLewchuk wrote: Sun Oct 25, 2020 11:10 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Sun Oct 25, 2020 6:00 pm
Yep, there are no moral facts, but only moral opinions held by people, some of whom think their own moral opinions are facts. (Moral realists and objectivists never think their moral opinions could be false - in my experience.)

Whatever facts we deploy to justify a moral opinion, it remains an opinion. And others can deploy the same facts differently, or different facts, to justify a different moral opinion. That is our inescapable moral predicament.

Harris, Dillanhunty and others make a simple mistake. Of course we can prefer well-being to suffering, maximal or otherwise, for good (meaning rational) reasons. But that one 'is better than' the other is a value-judgement, not a fact - a true factual assertion independent from opinion.
This is where the conversation basically stops. Once a person attempts to defend their position by saying that the statement "suffering is bad" is merely an opinion is either irrational, insane, or has never witness or experienced suffering.
Call it a belief or a judgement - and omit 'merely'.

There are religions and other ideologies that teach the benefit of suffering. No pain, no gain. You may think their adherents irrational or insane, but that's just your opinion.

And you are presumptuous. I've both witnessed and experienced suffering, and I definitely prefer well-being and happiness. But your - and VA's and the Dick's argument - that if we don't want something it's a fact that it's morally wrong - is utterly fatuous and demonstrably unsound.

Thanks for the craic.
No, I am not talking about suffering in service of a greater good (e.g. a gym work out).

I am talking about SUFFERING!

This is so insane, I am LOL. I once listened to a lecture and the Professor commented that clinical depression is the worst disease he has ever seen. He has occasionally seen some good come out of cancer, etc., but never anything from depression. But I guess he is wrong, it could be "right desire" for some to desire depression... the good professor is clearly misguided.... Absolute lunacy.
Skepdick
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Skepdick »

KLewchuk wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:19 am No, I am not talking about suffering in service of a greater good (e.g. a gym work out).

I am talking about SUFFERING!

This is so insane, I am LOL. I once listened to a lecture and the Professor commented that clinical depression is the worst disease he has ever seen. He has occasionally seen some good come out of cancer, etc., but never anything from depression. But I guess he is wrong, it could be "right desire" for some to desire depression... the good professor is clearly misguided.... Absolute lunacy.
In case you haven't caught on, Peter places greater import on defending the semantics of the objective-subjective distinction than he does on actual human well-being.
KLewchuk
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by KLewchuk »

Skepdick wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:26 am
KLewchuk wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:19 am No, I am not talking about suffering in service of a greater good (e.g. a gym work out).

I am talking about SUFFERING!

This is so insane, I am LOL. I once listened to a lecture and the Professor commented that clinical depression is the worst disease he has ever seen. He has occasionally seen some good come out of cancer, etc., but never anything from depression. But I guess he is wrong, it could be "right desire" for some to desire depression... the good professor is clearly misguided.... Absolute lunacy.
In case you haven't caught on, Peter places greater import on defending the semantics of the objective-subjective distinction than he does on actual human well-being.
Actually, I hadn't... but now that you mention it... pretty clear.
Peter Holmes
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

KLewchuk wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:48 am
Skepdick wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:26 am
KLewchuk wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:19 am No, I am not talking about suffering in service of a greater good (e.g. a gym work out).

I am talking about SUFFERING!

This is so insane, I am LOL. I once listened to a lecture and the Professor commented that clinical depression is the worst disease he has ever seen. He has occasionally seen some good come out of cancer, etc., but never anything from depression. But I guess he is wrong, it could be "right desire" for some to desire depression... the good professor is clearly misguided.... Absolute lunacy.
In case you haven't caught on, Peter places greater import on defending the semantics of the objective-subjective distinction than he does on actual human well-being.
Actually, I hadn't... but now that you mention it... pretty clear.
This little exchange demonstrates the failure of moral realism and objectivism. Here's how it goes.

"Okay, we can't show that there are moral facts [ed: because there aren't any], but ... well-being and happiness are so obviously better than suffering and unhappiness that anyone who disagrees must be morally imbecilic or mentally disordered, or both.

What do you mean - you agree that well-being and happiness are better than suffering and unhappiness?! What nonsense. Stop lying. Stand up and be the straw man we want you to be!"

To repeat. There are no moral facts, but only moral opinions held by people, some of whom insist their own moral opinions are facts. And if those people get into power - and particularly if they deludedly believe a god shares their moral opinions - their conviction that there are moral facts has sometimes had, and continues to have, morally disastrous consequences.

And the smug self-righteousness of the objectivists here - 'oh, but MY moral opinions are the right ones - I KNOW what the moral facts are' - shows the delusion at work. It's a case of: there are none so blind.
Skepdick
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Skepdick »

Peter Holmes wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 9:18 am This little exchange demonstrates the failure of moral realism and objectivism.

(blah blah blah)
What or where is this "failure" you insist is being demonstrated? Can anyone see it? Can anyone touch it? Can anyone taste it? Can anyone smell it?

It sure seems this "failure" you speak of is just your opinion. A subjective judgment. A metaphysical delusion without existence.
Peter Holmes wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 9:18 am And the smug self-righteousness of the objectivists here - 'oh, but MY moral opinions are the right ones - I KNOW what the moral facts are' - shows the delusion at work. It's a case of: there are none so blind.
And the smug self-righteousness of the subjectivist here - 'oh, but MY opinions are the right ones - I KNOW what failure is' - shows the delusion at work. It's a case of: there are none so blind.

You've demonstrated nothing. You have opined failure which ,by your very own premises, carry zero factual weight.

What you've demonstrated is certainly NOT failure.
Peter Holmes
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

Moral objectivist #1: Of course there are moral facts. Anyone who thinks otherwise is either wicked or insane. For example, of course abortion is morally wrong. And of course capital punishment and eating animals are not morally wrong. And this is for obvious reasons.

Moral objectivist #2: Of course there are moral facts. Anyone who thinks otherwise is either wicked or insane. For example, of course abortion is not morally wrong. And of course capital punishment and eating animals are morally wrong. And this is for obvious reasons.

Theist moral objectivist: Of course there are moral facts. They emanate from the nature and wishes of the god I believe in and worship. And anyone who thinks otherwise can't rationally make a moral judgement or criticise anyone else's. And they may well burn in hell.

Okay. Good to sort that out.
KLewchuk
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by KLewchuk »

Peter Holmes wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 9:18 am
KLewchuk wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:48 am
Skepdick wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:26 am
In case you haven't caught on, Peter places greater import on defending the semantics of the objective-subjective distinction than he does on actual human well-being.
Actually, I hadn't... but now that you mention it... pretty clear.
This little exchange demonstrates the failure of moral realism and objectivism. Here's how it goes.

"Okay, we can't show that there are moral facts [ed: because there aren't any], but ... well-being and happiness are so obviously better than suffering and unhappiness that anyone who disagrees must be morally imbecilic or mentally disordered, or both.

What do you mean - you agree that well-being and happiness are better than suffering and unhappiness?! What nonsense. Stop lying. Stand up and be the straw man we want you to be!"

To repeat. There are no moral facts, but only moral opinions held by people, some of whom insist their own moral opinions are facts. And if those people get into power - and particularly if they deludedly believe a god shares their moral opinions - their conviction that there are moral facts has sometimes had, and continues to have, morally disastrous consequences.

And the smug self-righteousness of the objectivists here - 'oh, but MY moral opinions are the right ones - I KNOW what the moral facts are' - shows the delusion at work. It's a case of: there are none so blind.
Wow, weird shit. Where did you study; Frankfurt? Your comments have that pomo, relativist stench.
Peter Holmes
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

KLewchuk wrote: Wed Oct 28, 2020 12:18 am
Peter Holmes wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 9:18 am
KLewchuk wrote: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:48 am

Actually, I hadn't... but now that you mention it... pretty clear.
This little exchange demonstrates the failure of moral realism and objectivism. Here's how it goes.

"Okay, we can't show that there are moral facts [ed: because there aren't any], but ... well-being and happiness are so obviously better than suffering and unhappiness that anyone who disagrees must be morally imbecilic or mentally disordered, or both.

What do you mean - you agree that well-being and happiness are better than suffering and unhappiness?! What nonsense. Stop lying. Stand up and be the straw man we want you to be!"

To repeat. There are no moral facts, but only moral opinions held by people, some of whom insist their own moral opinions are facts. And if those people get into power - and particularly if they deludedly believe a god shares their moral opinions - their conviction that there are moral facts has sometimes had, and continues to have, morally disastrous consequences.

And the smug self-righteousness of the objectivists here - 'oh, but MY moral opinions are the right ones - I KNOW what the moral facts are' - shows the delusion at work. It's a case of: there are none so blind.
Wow, weird shit. Where did you study; Frankfurt? Your comments have that pomo, relativist stench.
To reject moral objectivism is not to accept moral relativism. (That's just intellectually lazy.)

Tell you what, try a little genuine thinking. Here are two moral assertions:

1 Abortion is morally wrong.
2 Abortion is not morally wrong.

Now, people can and do hold one position or the other - and they have strong reasons for doing so on both sides. But if such moral assertions make truth-claims about reality - in other words, if they're factual assertions - then one must be true and the other must be false. And that's what moral objectivists claim.

So, as a moral objectivist, please explain what it is in reality (iow, not your or anyone's opinion) that makes or could make one of those assertions true and the other false. Put your money where your mouth is. Walk the walk.

If you can do it, you'll win the argument - and I wait with unbated breath. But until you do, you're just waving hands and making noise.
Skepdick
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Skepdick »

Peter Holmes wrote: Wed Oct 28, 2020 9:11 am To reject moral objectivism is not to accept moral relativism. (That's just intellectually lazy.)

Tell you what, try a little genuine thinking. Here are two moral assertions:

1 Abortion is morally wrong.
2 Abortion is not morally wrong.

Now, people can and do hold one position or the other - and they have strong reasons for doing so on both sides. But if such moral assertions make truth-claims about reality - in other words, if they're factual assertions - then one must be true and the other must be false. And that's what moral objectivists claim.

So, as a moral objectivist, please explain what it is in reality (iow, not your or anyone's opinion) that makes or could make one of those assertions true and the other false. Put your money where your mouth is. Walk the walk.

If you can do it, you'll win the argument - and I wait with unbated breath. But until you do, you're just waving hands and making noise.
*yawn*

To reject color-objectivism is not to accept color relativism. (That's just intellectually lazy.)

Tell you what, lets try a little genuine thinking. Here are two color assertions:

1. The sky is blue.
2. The sky is not blue.

Now, people can and do hold one position or the other - and they have strong reasons for doing so on both sides. But if color-assertions make truth-claims about reality - in other words, if they're factual assertions - then one must be true and the other must be false. And that's what color objectivists claim.

So, as a color objectivist, please explain what it is in reality (iow, not your or anyone's opinion) that makes or could make one of those assertions true and the other false. Put your money where your mouth is. Walk the walk.

If you can do it, you'll win the argument - and I wait with unbated breath. But until you do, you're just waving hands and making noise.

EXACTLY the same thing which makes the sky one way or another what makes abortion one way or another!!!
KLewchuk
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by KLewchuk »

Skepdick wrote: Wed Oct 28, 2020 1:55 pm
Peter Holmes wrote: Wed Oct 28, 2020 9:11 am To reject moral objectivism is not to accept moral relativism. (That's just intellectually lazy.)

Tell you what, try a little genuine thinking. Here are two moral assertions:

1 Abortion is morally wrong.
2 Abortion is not morally wrong.

Now, people can and do hold one position or the other - and they have strong reasons for doing so on both sides. But if such moral assertions make truth-claims about reality - in other words, if they're factual assertions - then one must be true and the other must be false. And that's what moral objectivists claim.

So, as a moral objectivist, please explain what it is in reality (iow, not your or anyone's opinion) that makes or could make one of those assertions true and the other false. Put your money where your mouth is. Walk the walk.

If you can do it, you'll win the argument - and I wait with unbated breath. But until you do, you're just waving hands and making noise.
*yawn*

To reject color-objectivism is not to accept color relativism. (That's just intellectually lazy.)

Tell you what, lets try a little genuine thinking. Here are two color assertions:

1. The sky is blue.
2. The sky is not blue.

Now, people can and do hold one position or the other - and they have strong reasons for doing so on both sides. But if color-assertions make truth-claims about reality - in other words, if they're factual assertions - then one must be true and the other must be false. And that's what color objectivists claim.

So, as a color objectivist, please explain what it is in reality (iow, not your or anyone's opinion) that makes or could make one of those assertions true and the other false. Put your money where your mouth is. Walk the walk.

If you can do it, you'll win the argument - and I wait with unbated breath. But until you do, you're just waving hands and making noise.

EXACTLY the same thing which makes the sky one way or another what makes abortion one way or another!!!
Sure, that is a lay-up.

When we speak of truth, we do need to address context. I speak as a human. For example, I don't see "infra-red" without assistance. However, as an aside, even if I don't experience infra-red does not mean that infra-red doesn't objectively exist.. that is an aside. Humans do recognize the "color blue" as a species. When people don't recognize certain colors, we term them "color blind".

Is color simply "majority opinion"? No, because most people will recognize a blue sky... even if they say otherwise.

We can also study the color blue and understand how it interacts with retina's and brains and produces things... things which we don't understand.

But I will take another example:

You and I could both go to a hockey game. Our experience of the game will certainly be different. I may be an expert; your first game. That being said, if I saw a hockey game and the other an opera...one of us is wrong.
Skepdick
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Skepdick »

KLewchuk wrote: Thu Oct 29, 2020 12:03 am When we speak of truth, we do need to address context. I speak as a human. For example, I don't see "infra-red" without assistance.

However, as an aside, even if I don't experience infra-red does not mean that infra-red doesn't objectively exist.. that is an aside.
The biggest organ in the body senses infra-red. Your skin. Is because you don't think about your eyes and skin as "the same thing" (sensory input) is why you see this as an aside.
KLewchuk wrote: Thu Oct 29, 2020 12:03 am Humans do recognize the "color blue" as a species. When people don't recognize certain colors, we term them "color blind".
Sure. Much like when people don't recognise certain behaviour as "wrong" we term them immoral. Sociopaths. Criminals etc.
KLewchuk wrote: Thu Oct 29, 2020 12:03 am Is color simply "majority opinion"? No, because most people will recognize a blue sky... even if they say otherwise.
This is trivially testable: Take the color spectrum, split it up into bands of equal size (50 or so should suffice). Shuffle. Ask a few hundred people to pick the "blue" color. Sure enough you'll get a reasonable approximation of what society as a whole thinks "blue" is.

Great!

Now repeat the experiment by instructing your subjects to pick the "أخضر" color. People won't have a clue what that means but for the sake of experiment we should insist "just pick the color that feels most أخضر". And so... people will pick some color.

Does this then mean that "most people will recognize a أخضر sky... even if they say otherwise"?

The only way to determine that the word "blue" corresponds to THIS COLOR and not THIS COLOR is by induction.

You've contextualised this in a way which addresses nothing more than the "How does language relate to the world?" problem. Which is precisely the game of semantics Peter is playing. It's a game about nomenclature, not a game about consequences.
KLewchuk wrote: Thu Oct 29, 2020 12:03 am We can also study the color blue and understand how it interacts with retina's and brains and produces things... things which we don't understand.
Given the above I am putting you down as a color-objectivist. Is just that color happens in the mind...

What you probably meant to say was that we can study light of frequency between 450–495 nanometers and understand how it interacts with our senses to produce that which we recognise as "blue".

We don't need to understand what "blue" is in order to recognise it.
KLewchuk wrote: Thu Oct 29, 2020 12:03 am You and I could both go to a hockey game. Our experience of the game will certainly be different. I may be an expert; your first game. That being said, if I saw a hockey game and the other an opera...one of us is wrong.
Your framing/context reduces the entire problem to the past tense labelling exercise. We saw what we saw. We termed our experiences differently. So what?

What implications does a different nomenclature entail? If none - who cares? This is still just the "How does language relate to the world?" problem.

One of us may well be "wrong". So what? There's nothing wrong with being wrong if it entails no consequence.

I RECOGNISE THIS COLOR AS BLUE.

If I am "wrong" about this, how am I to detect my error?
Veritas Aequitas
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Veritas Aequitas »

Peter Holmes wrote: Wed Oct 28, 2020 9:11 am To reject moral objectivism is not to accept moral relativism. (That's just intellectually lazy.)

Tell you what, try a little genuine thinking. Here are two moral assertions:

1 Abortion is morally wrong.
2 Abortion is not morally wrong.

Now, people can and do hold one position or the other - and they have strong reasons for doing so on both sides. But if such moral assertions make truth-claims about reality - in other words, if they're factual assertions - then one must be true and the other must be false. And that's what moral objectivists claim.

So, as a moral objectivist, please explain what it is in reality (iow, not your or anyone's opinion) that makes or could make one of those assertions true and the other false. Put your money where your mouth is. Walk the walk.

If you can do it, you'll win the argument - and I wait with unbated breath. But until you do, you're just waving hands and making noise.
Tell you what, try a little genuine thinking. Here are two moral assertions:
  • 1. Moral objectivist: Sodomizing, torturing then killing Peter Holmes is morally wrong objectively.

    2. Moral relativist: Sodomizing, torturing then killing Peter Holmes is not morally wrong.
To make the point stronger I could include other Peter Holmes, I should include children kins, relatives, but you are likely to be offended [but I don't do that here].

So which, 1 or 2 do you agree with?

I have already provided justifications on moral realism and objectivity a '1000' times in this thread and elsewhere, so I will not waste time here.
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henry quirk
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by henry quirk »

1 Abortion is morally wrong.
2 Abortion is not morally wrong.

please explain what it is in reality (iow, not your or anyone's opinion) that makes or could make one of those assertions true and the other false. Put your money where your mouth is. Walk the walk.


abortion is wrong becuz a person -- includin' one in the womb -- belongs to himself; to kill a person -- in the womb or walkin' the streets -- deprives the person of that which is his (his life, his liberty, his property)

do I win a lolly?
Peter Holmes
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Re: What could make morality objective?

Post by Peter Holmes »

henry quirk wrote: Thu Oct 29, 2020 2:36 pm 1 Abortion is morally wrong.
2 Abortion is not morally wrong.

please explain what it is in reality (iow, not your or anyone's opinion) that makes or could make one of those assertions true and the other false. Put your money where your mouth is. Walk the walk.


abortion is wrong becuz a person -- includin' one in the womb -- belongs to himself; to kill a person -- in the womb or walkin' the streets -- deprives the person of that which is his (his life, his liberty, his property)

do I win a lolly?
No.

There are three dodgy claims here: a human belongs to herself; because a human belongs to herself, it's morally wrong to deprive her of herself; a human zygote-plus is a human that therefore belongs to herself.

Do you have any evidence to support these claims as factually true of humans - and not true of other species - rather than matters of opinion?
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