7 of 9
7
Does Morality Really Have to do with questions of happiness/suffering?
Posted: 06 November 2012 07:08 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 91 ]  
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  226
Joined  2012-09-10
logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 06:07 AM

@ Rami Rustom

“Happiness is not a function of biological well-being or neurological whatever. Happiness is a function of one’s ideas (which includes his values, preferences, goals, etc), and his achieving those. Morality is about how to decide. And the main goal is freedom. This allows everyone to achieve happiness without being hindered…”

“Happiness” is superfluous in this description. The OP implies that happiness is the basis for moral values. If happiness is a function of those values, then the argument is circular.


What is OP? I googled but no help.


I don’t understand what you mean. Maybe an example will help clear up things. I value philosophy. Why? Because it helps me improve my life, all parts of it. Including my parenting. Namely helping my children with their conflict resolution skills.


So when I learn a new philosophical idea, and I notice that it helps me improve my parenting, then I feel happy.


So I felt happy *because* I achieved one of my goals. And I was able to achieve that goal *because* I valued philosophy. And I value philosophy *because* I know its going to help me achieve my goals.


Do you see a problem here?

 Signature 

—Rami Rustom

If you agree with my ideas, you’d enjoy these:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com
http://fallibleideas.com/
http://groups.google.com/group/beginning-of-infinity/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/taking-children-seriously/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/rational-politics-list/subscribe
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Autonomy-Respecting-Relationships/messages

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 November 2012 08:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 92 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  42
Joined  2012-09-25

The Original Posting asked whether morality was “to do with” happiness. I suggested that pursuit of philosophical truth can be an end in itself, not dependent on happiness. Your position seems to be

(a) philosophy is worthwhile because it is useful

(b) that makes you happy.

Obviously I don’t agree with the first point; but the more interesting issue is the second, because it still leaves it unclear whether the moral motivation was the usefulness or the eventual happiness.

Another favourite example or thought experiment for me is based on a story by Larry Niven. Wireheads are addicts who have an electrode implanted in their brains which gives them the most intense pleasure imaginable. Some starve to death rather than turn off the electricity. In a hedonistic ethical system, their behaviour is surely extremely moral - much more so is that of the surgeon who performs many such implants thereby maximising the happiness of many people.

That example cuts straight to the heart of the matter: no step (a) sits between the happiness and the action which delivers it. It seems obvious to me that the wirehead and the surgeon are both behaving immorally.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 November 2012 09:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 93 ]  
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  226
Joined  2012-09-10
logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 08:52 AM

The Original Posting asked whether morality was “to do with” happiness. I suggested that pursuit of philosophical truth can be an end in itself, not dependent on happiness. Your position seems to be

(a) philosophy is worthwhile because it is useful

(b) that makes you happy.

Obviously I don’t agree with the first point;


That is not obvious to me. Why do you disagree? (oh you answer below)

logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 08:52 AM

but the more interesting issue is the second, because it still leaves it unclear whether the moral motivation was the usefulness or the eventual happiness.
Another favourite example or thought experiment for me is based on a story by Larry Niven. Wireheads are addicts who have an electrode implanted in their brains which gives them the most intense pleasure imaginable. Some starve to death rather than turn off the electricity. In a hedonistic ethical system, their behaviour is surely extremely moral - much more so is that of the surgeon who performs many such implants thereby maximising the happiness of many people.

That example cuts straight to the heart of the matter: no step (a) sits between the happiness and the action which delivers it. It seems obvious to me that the wirehead and the surgeon are both behaving immorally.


In that hypothetical, does the person make money to support himself? Or does he mooch off his parents or tax payers? One should not be a burden on others. Being a burden on others makes those other people suffer.

 Signature 

—Rami Rustom

If you agree with my ideas, you’d enjoy these:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com
http://fallibleideas.com/
http://groups.google.com/group/beginning-of-infinity/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/taking-children-seriously/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/rational-politics-list/subscribe
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Autonomy-Respecting-Relationships/messages

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 November 2012 11:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 94 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  42
Joined  2012-09-25

[Disagreed about purpose of philosophy - already indicated, hence obvious. I think philosophy is about understanding self/humanity and the cosmos - understanding for its own sake, the pursuit of truth.]

The hypothetical wirehead consumes a few millijoules of electrical energy at a cost of a few cents and dies in ecstasy; he ceases to be a burden on society. In principle, his extreme happiness has no negative effect on others.

However, suppose that it does. Suppose that he causes a relatively small but significant amount of unhappiness to others. The “utilitarian calculus” suggests that his great ecstasy outweighs their minor misery.

But I am amazed that your moral assessment of the wh’s action is limited to his effect on others. I think - and I believe most thinking people would agree - that we can condemn his waste of a life and his sensualist motivation.

A further example. Suppose, which is true, that we can kill someone in his sleep without causing him any distress. Suppose a man’s death is the key to the great happiness of others (perhaps he is an aged billionaire with impatient heirs): does that make a murder moral? Or is there something more important than happiness at stake.

[ Edited: 07 November 2012 12:03 AM by logicophilosophicus]
Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 November 2012 07:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 95 ]  
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  226
Joined  2012-09-10
logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 11:52 PM

[Disagreed about purpose of philosophy - already indicated, hence obvious.

Appealing to obviousness is bad philosophy. What is obvious to you is not necessarily obvious to me. So what problem do you solve by stating that an idea is obvious (to you)?

logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 11:52 PM

I think philosophy is about understanding self/humanity and the cosmos - understanding for its own sake, the pursuit of truth.]

No. Philosophy is *much* more useful than that. Philosophy is about thinking better about *anything*. Humans are fallible—we make mistakes—none of us are perfect. This raises the question: What makes some people better than others with respect to having fewer mistaken ideas and making fewer mistakes? Philosophy.

logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 11:52 PM

The hypothetical wirehead consumes a few millijoules of electrical energy at a cost of a few cents and dies in ecstasy; he ceases to be a burden on society. In principle, his extreme happiness has no negative effect on others.

No. A few cents *is not* zero. *Almost* zero cost means *almost* zero negative effect on others. So the negative effect is a non-zero effect. For your principle to be correct, the cost on others would have to be *exactly* zero.

logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 11:52 PM

However, suppose that it does. Suppose that he causes a relatively small but significant amount of unhappiness to others. The “utilitarian calculus” suggests that his great ecstasy outweighs their minor misery.

The idea that choices are about weighing options is bad philosophy. We don’t weigh options. In every single decision to be made, we guess options and criticize them. And we criticize the criticisms. The option left unrefuted is the moral option.


Often people choose an option without first having refuted the rival options. This is bad philosophy.

logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 11:52 PM

But I am amazed that your moral assessment of the wh’s action is limited to his effect on others. I think - and I believe most thinking people would agree -

Appealing to the authority of *your belief of what most thinking people would agree to* is bad philosophy. Truth is not determined by authority. What problem do you solve by appealing to authority? Do you think that I’ll be persuaded of your idea because “most thinking people” believe that idea? Aren’t we discussing so that we can discover the truth? Doesn’t that mean also trying to persuade each other?


My moral assessment is not limited to his effect on others. You have not heard my entire argument. And I can’t deliver my entire argument until I understand your position.

logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 11:52 PM

that we can condemn his waste of a life and his sensualist motivation.

In your hypothetical, the wh’s action might be immoral, but not for the reason you stated. If he hurts no one, then its not immoral. And so far, your hypothetical doesn’t qualify whether or not anyone was hurt. So tell me, do the people that are paying for the wh’s electricity *want* to pay for his electricity? If they want to, then they are not hurt. If they don’t want to, then they are hurt. For example, if the government forces productive people to pay taxes, and then it uses that tax money to pay for the wh’s electricity, then that is immoral. [See what I mean by *hurt* below.]

logicophilosophicus - 06 November 2012 11:52 PM

A further example. Suppose, which is true, that we can kill someone in his sleep without causing him any distress. Suppose a man’s death is the key to the great happiness of others (perhaps he is an aged billionaire with impatient heirs): does that make a murder moral? Or is there something more important than happiness at stake.

Killing someone against his will is immoral. But before I explain, lets get on the same page about what you and I mean by distress/hurt.


I note that your idea of distress is based on physical pain. I define distress a different way. Its about mental pain, mental suffering, mental hurt, or just *hurt*. Hurt happens when someone does something they don’t’ want to do, or something is done to him that he doesn’t want done to him. For example, say a guy wants to smoke a cigarette, but his kids are present and he doesn’t want them to know that he smokes. So, if he smokes, then he gets what he wants with respect to wanting to smoke, but he doesn’t get what he wants with respect to not wanting his kids to know that he smokes. And, if he instead doesn’t smoke, then he gets what he wants with respect to not wanting his kids to know that he smokes, but he doesn’t get what he wants with respect to wanting to smoke. So, either way he’s conflicted and he acts on one of the conflicting ideas. And by acting on one of the conflicting ideas, he has hurt himself.


With respect to your hypothetical, if someone kills me, and I wanted to live, then he acted against my will—he infringed on my freedom—he infringed on my freedom to get and keep what I want. Furthermore, he hurt my kids. My kids want me to continue taking care of them. They are not independent yet. They are heavily dependent on me. So by killing me, the murderer has also hurt my children.

 Signature 

—Rami Rustom

If you agree with my ideas, you’d enjoy these:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com
http://fallibleideas.com/
http://groups.google.com/group/beginning-of-infinity/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/taking-children-seriously/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/rational-politics-list/subscribe
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Autonomy-Respecting-Relationships/messages

Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 November 2012 12:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 96 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  42
Joined  2012-09-25

Not much point continuing this.

Take up the “bad philosophy” issue with Bentham, Mill and Harris.

Assume that the wirehead has paid for his own electricity.

Assume that the impatient heirs who humanely terminate the billionaire are not hurt by his death.

Accept that all morality depends on the opinions and actions of people.

I have no further clarification to add.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 07 November 2012 02:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 97 ]  
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  226
Joined  2012-09-10
logicophilosophicus - 07 November 2012 12:19 PM

Not much point continuing this.

Why not? Do you think its impossible for us to agree? I disagree with that.


Two rational people discussing a topic in which they disagree, will always reach agreement. This is a consequence of the fact that reality is objective.

logicophilosophicus - 07 November 2012 12:19 PM

Take up the “bad philosophy” issue with Bentham, Mill and Harris.

But *they* weren’t the ones that used bad philosophy in this discussion. *You* did. So why shouldn’t I address it with you? Furthermore, you made an assertion about the purpose of philosophy and you didn’t provide an explanation. Are you telling me that in order for me to find out what your explanation is, I’d have to go talk to them or read their books? Thats ridiculous!


What problem are you solving by deferring to them? You are again appealing to authority—this time to the authority of famous philosophers. Do you think that I’ll be persuaded because some famous philosophers disagree with me? Or is this your way of evading criticism?

logicophilosophicus - 07 November 2012 12:19 PM

Assume that the wirehead has paid for his own electricity.

So you’re saying he either worked for that money, or he inherited the money. And then he used it without hurting anyone. Right? Why is this immoral? What is problematic about what he’s doing?

logicophilosophicus - 07 November 2012 12:19 PM

Assume that the impatient heirs who humanely terminate the billionaire are not hurt by his death.

But the billionaire might want to live. In which case killing him is infringing on his freedom. So killing him is immoral.

logicophilosophicus - 07 November 2012 12:19 PM

Accept that all morality depends on the opinions and actions of people.

I don’t know what that means. I think you’re trying to say that morality is relative. I disagree. Its objective. Each and every decision has an objectively best option that a person can make. Just because a person’s opinion says otherwise doesn’t make it moral. Do you agree?

logicophilosophicus - 07 November 2012 12:19 PM

I have no further clarification to add.

You didn’t make any clarifications. What you’ve done is change (add to) the hypotheticals that you previously presented.


Do you mean you have no more to say? How do you know that? You could consider my ideas and you could have something to say about it. You could disagree. Which means you see a flaw in an idea of mine. In which case you could point out the flaw and explain why you think its a flaw.

 Signature 

—Rami Rustom

If you agree with my ideas, you’d enjoy these:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com
http://fallibleideas.com/
http://groups.google.com/group/beginning-of-infinity/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/taking-children-seriously/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/rational-politics-list/subscribe
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Autonomy-Respecting-Relationships/messages

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 November 2012 02:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 98 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  42
Joined  2012-09-25

“Two rational people discussing a topic in which they disagree, will always reach agreement. This is a consequence of the fact that reality is objective.” On the contrary, two highly qualified experts who disagree (Gould and Dawkins, Penrose and Hawking, Chomsky and Quine, etc, etc) will almost NEVER reach agreement. This is probably a consequence of the fact that reality is too complex or profound to be fully or finally understood by human beings. (And note that “reality is objective” is a big claim.)

Me: “Take up the ‘bad philosophy’ issue with Bentham, Mill and Harris.”
You: “But *they* weren’t the ones that used bad philosophy in this discussion. *You* did. So why shouldn’t I address it with you?”

The starting point was:“Does Morality Really Have to do with questions of happiness/suffering?” I (explicitly) took this to mean: “Are all moral questions Utilitarian issues.” My answer is “No”. Utilitarians and other hedonists have to balance different possibilities and degrees of happiness (or felicity [Bentham], or well-being [Harris], or pleasure/pain [Epicurus], or whatever term they choose). If that Utilitarian Calculus is “bad philosophy” then address that to the erring philosophers (examine their justification), not to me. (“You are again appealing to authority… the authority of famous philosophers… is this your way of evading criticism?” How could you imagine that?)

And that raises a problem for you:
Since you are arguing that morality IS INDEED all about happiness, how can you make a moral judgment without a “calculus”?
Your only expressed criterion is that if anyone is made even very slightly unhappy the action was immoral. If you believed that, you would be doomed to unabated disappointment. I can’t recall (for example) a single piece of legislation in the UK or the EU which hasn’t annoyed some people. Even your missing apostrophe in the next paragraph would incense some pedants. H

“...you made an assertion about the purpose of philosophy and you didn’t provide an explanation. Are you telling me that in order for me to find out what your explanation is, I’d have to go talk to them or read their books? Thats ridiculous!”

Actually I passed an opinion, prefixed with the words: “I think…” That’s not an assertion. However, you have made an assertion - that Philosophy must be “useful” in a practical sense. You will not find many philosophers who agree. Here’s a starting point:
http://www.unomaha.edu/philosophy/Berlin.THE_PURPOSE_OF_PHILOSOPHY.rtf

Me: “Assume that the impatient heirs who humanely terminate the billionaire are not hurt by his death.”
That was for clarification: we can imagine situations - indefinitely many of them - where happiness is increased but nevertheless a negative moral judgment seems unavoidable.
You: “But the billionaire might want to live. In which case killing him is infringing on his freedom. So killing him is immoral.”
By George he’s got it! “Freedom” is indeed a moral category which is not easily defined purely in terms of happiness or even well-being. My point.

Me: “...most thinking people would agree - that we can condemn [the] waste of a life [in mere pleasure].”
You: “Appealing to the authority of *your belief of what most thinking people would agree to* is bad philosophy.”

The only conclusion I implied is that people do IN FACT regularly make moral judgments based on some concept of virtue or the Good Life. (As do many philosophers from Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, and Marcus Aurelius of course, all the way through to Alasdair MacIntyre. That would all just be “bad philosophy” to you.) They find drug addiction IN OTHERS offensive - and if it makes them at all unhappy, then IN YOUR OWN SYSTEM it is immoral.

Me (therefore): “Accept that all morality depends on the opinions and actions of people.”
You: “I disagree. Its objective.”
“Unhappiness”/“Happiness” OBJECTIVE???

I could say a lot more, but there really is little point.

[ Edited: 08 November 2012 02:55 AM by logicophilosophicus]
Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 November 2012 09:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 99 ]  
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  226
Joined  2012-09-10
logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

On the contrary, two highly qualified experts who disagree (Gould and Dawkins, Penrose and Hawking, Chomsky and Quine, etc, etc) will almost NEVER reach agreement.

In each each of those disagreements, did someone not address a criticism from the other? If so, that is irrational. I imagine that in some of those disagreements, neither person provided a criticism of the other person’s theory. This just means that didn’t discuss each other’s ideas.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

This is probably a consequence of the fact that reality is too complex or profound to be fully or finally understood by human beings.

Reality is not too complex. What is true is that humans are fallible. That means that any one of our ideas could be mistaken. So when two rational people discuss their rival ideas, there are 2 possibilties: (1) one of them is mistaken, (2) both of them is mistaken. So whats the solution? To criticize the ideas. That means discovering flaws in each other’s ideas. And also criticizing the criticisms. And in that process, they will reach the same idea. That agreed idea might be one of the ones presented at the beginning of the discussion. Or it might be a new idea that contains parts of the original ideas.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

(And note that “reality is objective” is a big claim.)

What does that mean?

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

The starting point was:“Does Morality Really Have to do with questions of happiness/suffering?” I (explicitly) took this to mean: “Are all moral questions Utilitarian issues.” My answer is “No”. Utilitarians and other hedonists

Ah. I think those are not equivalent. I agree with you that utilitarianism and hedonism is false/bad.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

have to balance different possibilities and degrees of happiness (or felicity [Bentham], or well-being [Harris], or pleasure/pain [Epicurus], or whatever term they choose). If that Utilitarian Calculus is “bad philosophy” then address that to the erring philosophers (examine their justification), not to me.

So we’re both on the same page about utilitarian calculus and hedonism being bad philosophy.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

(“You are again appealing to authority… the authority of famous philosophers… is this your way of evading criticism?” How could you imagine that?)

I didn’t know why you brought up their names. So I guessed. (I realize now that you thought my position included utilitarian calculus and hedonism.)

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

And that raises a problem for you:
Since you are arguing that morality IS INDEED all about happiness,

I didn’t say that. If you think I did, quote me.


What I did say (and I’m quoting) is: “Happiness is a function of one’s ideas (which includes his values, preferences, goals, etc), and his achieving those. Morality is about how to decide. And the main goal is freedom. This allows everyone to achieve happiness without being hindered…”. That means each person has the freedom to pursue his happiness. And no one has the moral right to infringe on another person’s freedom to purse his happiness (except for situations when that other person is infringing on my freedom—aka self-defense).

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

how can you make a moral judgment without a “calculus”?
Your only expressed criterion is that if anyone is made even very slightly unhappy the action was immoral.

I haven’t said that. If you think I did, quote me.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

If you believed that, you would be doomed to unabated disappointment. I can’t recall (for example) a single piece of legislation in the UK or the EU which hasn’t annoyed some people. Even your missing apostrophe in the next paragraph would incense some pedants.

I’m not responsible for other people’s happiness. And other people are not responsible for my happiness. We all have the right to freedom—the freedom to make ourselves happy. And that implies that each person has the moral obligation to not infringe on other people’s freedom—because doing so means preventing them from making themselves happy.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

Actually I passed an opinion, prefixed with the words: “I think…” That’s not an assertion. However, you have made an assertion - that Philosophy must be “useful” in a practical sense.

I didn’t say that philosophy “must be” useful. I said that it *is* useful.


I don’t see a difference between assertions and opinions.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

You will not find many philosophers who agree. Here’s a starting point:
http://www.unomaha.edu/philosophy/Berlin.THE_PURPOSE_OF_PHILOSOPHY.rtf

I’ve shown you how bad philosophy can affect practical things. And the only reason that I pointed out your appeals to authority was to show you that philosophy is practical. That bad philosophy causes practical problems, and that good philosophy solves those problems.


Are you saying that that paper you linked disagrees with me about the idea that *appealing to obviousness* and more generally, *appealing to authority* is bad philosophy? If so, please quote the relevant part of that paper that explains that. If not, then I don’t understand why you linked that paper.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

Me: “Assume that the impatient heirs who humanely terminate the billionaire are not hurt by his death.”
That was for clarification: we can imagine situations - indefinitely many of them - where happiness is increased but nevertheless a negative moral judgment seems unavoidable.

So you were criticizing utilitarianism. But that isn’t part of my position.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

You: “But the billionaire might want to live. In which case killing him is infringing on his freedom. So killing him is immoral.”
By George he’s got it! “Freedom” is indeed a moral category which is not easily defined purely in terms of happiness or even well-being. My point.

I think you forgot what I said: “Happiness is a function of one’s ideas (which includes his values, preferences, goals, etc), and his achieving those. Morality is about how to decide. And the main goal is freedom. This allows everyone to achieve happiness without being hindered…”


Saying “by George he’s got it” is bad philosophy. You have assumed that I just learned something when in reality I knew that before and I already told you that I knew it. And you even quoted my statement that says I know it. Better philosophy would help you not do that. So, do you agree with me that philosophy is useful in a practical sense?

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

Me: “...most thinking people would agree - that we can condemn [the] waste of a life [in mere pleasure].”
You: “Appealing to the authority of *your belief of what most thinking people would agree to* is bad philosophy.”
The only conclusion I implied is that people do IN FACT regularly make moral judgments based on some concept of virtue or the Good Life.

Good life means moral life. Good virtues means good values. Good values means good moral values. I agree. One of those good values is to do stuff that increases one’s own happiness without infringing on the freedom of others to make themselves happy.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

(As do many philosophers from Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, and Marcus Aurelius of course, all the way through to Alasdair MacIntyre. That would all just be “bad philosophy” to you.)

I don’t know their argument so I can’t comment.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

They find drug addiction IN OTHERS offensive - and if it makes them at all unhappy, then IN YOUR OWN SYSTEM it is immoral.

No. That person is not responsible for your happiness. And you are not responsible for his.

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

Me (therefore): “Accept that all morality depends on the opinions and actions of people.”
You: “I disagree. Its objective.”
“Unhappiness”/“Happiness” OBJECTIVE???

Yes. Do you agree that solving one’s problems is a good thing? And that doing so makes one happy?

logicophilosophicus - 08 November 2012 02:51 AM

I could say a lot more, but there really is little point.

Why is there no point? I see 3 options: (1) You think I am hopeless, (2) You think you’re hopeless, (3) You think its hopeless that we’ll agree.


I note that you confused my position. You added elements to my position. You got those elements from other sources, like bad philosophy you learned about in the past (such as utilitarian calculus and hedonism). And then you proceeded to criticize *that* position, rather than *my* position. So you created a strawman and then attacked it. Better philosophy can help you not make strawman arguments. Hence philosophy *is* useful.

 Signature 

—Rami Rustom

If you agree with my ideas, you’d enjoy these:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com
http://fallibleideas.com/
http://groups.google.com/group/beginning-of-infinity/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/taking-children-seriously/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/rational-politics-list/subscribe
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Autonomy-Respecting-Relationships/messages

Profile
 
 
Posted: 21 November 2012 08:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 100 ]  
Member
Avatar
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  109
Joined  2012-09-22

Rami is an expert on Strawmen.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 22 November 2012 05:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 101 ]  
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  226
Joined  2012-09-10
GenerousGeorge - 21 November 2012 08:08 PM

Rami is an expert on Strawmen.


Do you mean that I made a strawman argument? AFAIK, I didn’t. And I don’t like to make mistakes like that. So please point it out to me so that I can learn to not make that mistake again.


Thanks.

 Signature 

—Rami Rustom

If you agree with my ideas, you’d enjoy these:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com
http://fallibleideas.com/
http://groups.google.com/group/beginning-of-infinity/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/taking-children-seriously/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/rational-politics-list/subscribe
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Autonomy-Respecting-Relationships/messages

Profile
 
 
Posted: 26 November 2012 08:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 102 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  17
Joined  2012-11-26

  It is not a yes or no question in my book but based off circumstances.

  To say that I will not smoke for my health is wise not morally right.

  But if Iam suffering from addiction and agitated cant concentrate im unhappy losing weight gaining weight wouldnt it be morally okay for me to smoke to fix all those underlining problems. Because if you think about it im dying every day so whats some fuel on a fire besides things burning down a little quicker??

  It should be called Selfless-morality!!

  Its wise to say I wont smoke for my own health But to me what is a moral statement is its bad for me to smoke because it
will affect possibly kill other people and I would have ruined my lungs and ruined a chance to donate them and save anothers life. 

Profile
 
 
Posted: 26 November 2012 02:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 103 ]  
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  226
Joined  2012-09-10
Akdrew88 - 26 November 2012 08:52 AM

  It is not a yes or no question in my book but based off circumstances.

By “based off circumstances”, I think you mean “contextual”. Yes, the morality of every decision depends on the details of the context of that decision.

Akdrew88 - 26 November 2012 08:52 AM

 
  To say that I will not smoke for my health is wise not morally right.

If “health” is your standard of value, then yes.

Akdrew88 - 26 November 2012 08:52 AM

  But if Iam suffering from addiction and agitated cant concentrate im unhappy losing weight gaining weight wouldnt it be morally okay for me to smoke to fix all those underlining problems. Because if you think about it im dying every day so whats some fuel on a fire besides things burning down a little quicker??

Agreed.

Akdrew88 - 26 November 2012 08:52 AM

  It should be called Selfless-morality!!

I don’t know what you mean.

Akdrew88 - 26 November 2012 08:52 AM

  Its wise to say I wont smoke for my own health But to me what is a moral statement is its bad for me to smoke because it
will affect possibly kill other people and I would have ruined my lungs and ruined a chance to donate them and save anothers life.

Why would another person need your lungs? Because he smoked for decades and ruined his lungs? If this is the case, and you didn’t smoke so that you could give this guy your lungs upon your death, then I disagree with you. You’re saying that its immoral for you to ruin your lungs because upon your death your non-diseased lungs should go to a smoker who needs them.


And if you’re talking about having your lungs be donated to non-smokers, I don’t think there are many non-smokers that needs lungs. For one thing, one lung is enough to live. So even if we’re talking about non-smokers in need of lungs, there are enough non-smokers dying to supply the demand of people that need lungs.

 

 Signature 

—Rami Rustom

If you agree with my ideas, you’d enjoy these:

http://ramirustom.blogspot.com
http://fallibleideas.com/
http://groups.google.com/group/beginning-of-infinity/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/taking-children-seriously/subscribe
http://groups.google.com/group/rational-politics-list/subscribe
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Autonomy-Respecting-Relationships/messages

Profile
 
 
Posted: 27 November 2012 06:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 104 ]  
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  17
Joined  2012-11-26

By “based off circumstances”, I think you mean “contextual”. Yes, the morality of every decision depends on the details of the context of that decision.
No I dont mean contextual. Contextual applies to written or verbal statements by circumstances were talking about a certain detail of an event or place. So content might be the right word not context. 

If “health” is your standard of value, then yes.
Lol if health is your standard of value, then yes. Dont kid yourself buddy. Now! I’m speaking empirically when I say the person next to me that I have known my whole life slowly starts to lose hair, nails, weight, energy, eyesight, sleep, skin tone WHO VALUES THAT STANDARD OF HEALTH??? NOBODY. You make alot of assumptions and I have not seen one reasonable thing you have said except when in agreeance with me. 

Akdrew88 - 26 November 2012 08:52 AM

  It should be called Selfless-morality!!

I don’t know what you mean.
Exactly what I said. Me not doing something because it could affect others worse then me. But the situation affects both parties. FOR INSTANCES IF YOU DONT HAVE INSURANCE DONT DRIVE. In reality I can drive without insurance for years and years and I WILL be fine but if I hit someone else they can be screwed WORSE THEN ME therefore I should get insurance before I drive. No wordplay for you k wink

Akdrew88 - 26 November 2012 08:52 AM

  Its wise to say I wont smoke for my own health But to me what is a moral statement is its bad for me to smoke because it
will affect possibly kill other people and I would have ruined my lungs and ruined a chance to donate them and save anothers life.

Why would another person need your lungs? Because he smoked for decades and ruined his lungs? If this is the case, and you didn’t smoke so that you could give this guy your lungs upon your death, then I disagree with you. You’re saying that its immoral for you to ruin your lungs because upon your death your non-diseased lungs should go to a smoker who needs them.


And if you’re talking about having your lungs be donated to non-smokers, I don’t think there are many non-smokers that needs lungs. For one thing, one lung is enough to live. So even if we’re talking about non-smokers in need of lungs, there are enough non-smokers dying to supply the demand of people that need lungs.

 

HOW ABOUT LUNG DISEASES ON CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF 5!!!!!!! Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease can be caused by asthma, chronic bronchitis or emphysema. Over time, individuals with COPD slowly lose their ability to breathe. Dont forget the random protein deficiency that leads to Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency.
I LIKE HOW YOU ASSUME THINGS AND PASS JUDGEMENT BASED OFF OF SIMULACRUMS.
YOUR RESPONSES ARE KIND OF PEJORATIVE AND YOU SEEM TO DO NO RESEARCH BEFORE YOU TYPE AWAY. THANKS FOR THE FEEDBACK

Profile
 
 
Posted: 28 November 2012 01:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 105 ]  
Member
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  111
Joined  2011-12-28
BryanAJParry - 13 March 2008 01:54 PM

I think it does, but many have criticised Sam Harris for not making the point for why he believes this to be so. To be sure, I don’t think I’ve heard him do more than assert this. So I’m quite interested in what Harris’ response to this weakness in his worldview is.

ByranAParry,

All meaning is derived through the relation of a conscious subject to that of the physical world as object, All meaning is the property of the subject never to the world as object. The physical world is completely devoid of all meaning in the absence of a conscious subject,.What do you imagine could be the foundation of morality if not the self interest of the said subject/s. Put somewhat differently, nothing in and of itself has meaning but only through relation.Morality is the expression of the collective self, it is the collective self from which this social construct of morality arises, this understood, what other possibility is there for understanding this? Morality save guards the well being of the individual subject in the mosaic of the collective.

[ Edited: 28 November 2012 01:08 PM by boagie]
 Signature 

The Christian religion not only was at first attended with miracles, but even at this day cannot be believed by any reasonable person without one.
David Hume

Profile
 
 
   
7 of 9
7
 
RSS 2.0     Atom Feed