Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

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Divine Insight
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Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

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Post by Divine Insight »

In another thread The Tanager has requested a separate thread for his argument for the existence of a Non-Subjective morality.
The Tanager wrote: You made the claim that subjective morality exists in that other thread and this one. I am responding to that claim. I'm also willing afterwards to offer my own reasons for believing in non-subjective morality. If and/or how would one come to know what the non-subjective morality is would be an additional question, but it does not settle this one that we are talking about because of the claims you have made. After this discussion, start a thread on that and I'll share my thoughts.
I would be very interested to hear these arguments.
The Tanager wrote: If and/or how would one come to know what the non-subjective morality is would be an additional question
I agree. First we need to have reasons to even suspect that such a thing exists. I would like to hear those arguments first.

But yes, if those initial arguments are compelling (which I confess to being skeptic about already), a far more important question would be the question of how we could come to know what those moral rules are.

Without this additional knowledge the existence of a non-subjective morality would be useless. A system of morality whose content cannot be known would be meaningless.

So yes, we not only need to have arguments for the existence of a non-subjective morality, but we then need to know precisely what it contains without ambiguity.

Any ambiguity would bring us right back to having to subjectively guess what we think it might contain anyway. So that would hardly be useful and would instantly return us right back to a state of subjective morality.

So yes, we don't just need to know that an objective morality exists, but we also need to know precisely what it contains.
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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #91

Post by Artie »

Bust Nak wrote:
Artie wrote: Because you contradict what it says in the link.
Well the obvious follow up question is, why do you believe that I have contradict anything in the link? You tired this same line of questions days ago here, your questions were all addressed. do you think it would go any differently the second time round?

Is it because you are unwilling to process anything other than from within the frameworks of objectivism? It's not difficult, you understand food taste initiatively, let go of your preconceptions, even if just for the duration of this discussion.
"Moral subjectivism states that morality is decided by the individual. The individual is the measuring stick that decides right and wrong. Under moral subjectivism, morals are subjective. They are based on personal tastes, feelings, and opinions." What would a society be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions instead of behaving according to the rules of the society? What would a society be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions instead of the social norms that keep the society healthy? How could anybody ever turn their backs on their neighbors knowing there's no telling what they think is right or wrong? You have taught me a valuable lesson. I will watch out for moral subjectivists and avoid them at all costs.

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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

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Artie wrote: "Moral subjectivism states that morality is decided by the individual. The individual is the measuring stick that decides right and wrong. Under moral subjectivism, morals are subjective. They are based on personal tastes, feelings, and opinions." What would a society be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions instead of behaving according to the rules of the society? What would a society be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions instead of the social norms that keep the society healthy? How could anybody ever turn their backs on their neighbors knowing there's no telling what they think is right or wrong? You have taught me a valuable lesson. I will watch out for moral subjectivists and avoid them at all costs.
You have clearly conflated morality with the law.

Morality and law are two entirely different things.

People obey the laws whether they morally agree with them or not. Why? Because if they fail to obey the law they will be arrested by the authorities, fined, imprisoned, or worse.

A society can have laws independent of anyone's moral opinions.

In fact, the vast majority of laws that we must adhere to have nothing at all to do with morality.

What does forcing someone to pay property tax have to do with morality?

What does forcing someone to have their car, insured, inspected and licensed have to do with morality?

What do parking tickets have to do with morality?

Why should I need to get a building permit to build something on my property? What does that have to do with morality?

The vast majority of laws don't even have anything to do with morality anyway.

So you are making a grave mistake if you think that laws have anything to do with morality.

In fact, trying to put what you believe to be moral behaviors into law is a grave mistake as well.

Think about it, according to Christians it's immoral to refuse to acknowledge that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God. Could you imagine that being put into social law?

The first thing you need to realize is that a concept of morality has nothing at all to do with laws. Our laws are not based on morality, nor should they be.

Although some laws have been put onto the books by religious zealots. For example the so-called "Blue Laws".

Religious people do indeed try to push their moral principles onto society through legislation. But that is a very bad practice.

Imagine if the Muslims were making the laws based on Islamic Law?

Basing laws on what various people think represents moral laws is a very dangerous thing indeed.
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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #93

Post by Bust Nak »

First of all, you have not answered my follow up question. Are you conceeding that subjectivism is not contradictory?
Artie wrote: What would a society be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions instead of behaving according to the rules of the society? What would a society be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions instead of the social norms that keep the society healthy?
Anarchy and societal break down I suppose.

How about I answer a different question instead, how about I tell you what a society would be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions? It would be like the ones we have right here, right now. There is no reason to think that people's own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions in general would be contrary to the rules of the society, no reason to think that people's own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions in general would be contrary to the social norms that has kept the society healthy. Indeed, the rules and norm of society are the direct result of people's own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions.
How could anybody ever turn their backs on their neighbors knowing there's no telling what they think is right or wrong?
Easily, we do that every minute of every day, it is natural to us. We simply assume their idea of right and wrong largely match up to ours, until there is reason to believe otherwise.
You have taught me a valuable lesson. I will watch out for moral subjectivists and avoid them at all costs.
This is odd, why presume that someone following their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions would automatically be behaving contrary to the rules and norm of the society? Is there something you'd like to tell us about your personal tastes, feelings, opinions and ideas of right and wrong, that might prompt you to question others'?

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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #94

Post by Artie »

Divine Insight wrote:
Artie wrote: "Moral subjectivism states that morality is decided by the individual. The individual is the measuring stick that decides right and wrong. Under moral subjectivism, morals are subjective. They are based on personal tastes, feelings, and opinions." What would a society be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions instead of behaving according to the rules of the society? What would a society be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions instead of the social norms that keep the society healthy? How could anybody ever turn their backs on their neighbors knowing there's no telling what they think is right or wrong? You have taught me a valuable lesson. I will watch out for moral subjectivists and avoid them at all costs.
People obey the laws whether they morally agree with them or not. Why? Because if they fail to obey the law they will be arrested by the authorities, fined, imprisoned, or worse.
So now you are saying that moral subjectivists will follow their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions except when they think they might be arrested by the authorities, fined, imprisoned, or worse? Well, that is reassuring... "If it wasn't for the fact that I might be arrested and imprisoned I would murder you if I felt like it..." Does that sound like something you could say?

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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #95

Post by Artie »

Bust Nak wrote:How about I answer a different question instead, how about I tell you what a society would be like if everybody just followed their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions? It would be like the ones we have right here, right now. There is no reason to think that people's own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions in general would be contrary to the rules of the society, no reason to think that people's own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions in general would be contrary to the social norms that has kept the society healthy. Indeed, the rules and norm of society are the direct result of people's own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions.
Now I am seriously confused. DI says and I quote: "The vast majority of laws don't even have anything to do with morality anyway." and "The first thing you need to realize is that a concept of morality has nothing at all to do with laws. Our laws are not based on morality, nor should they be." So are the rules of society, the laws, based on subjective morality or not?

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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #96

Post by Bust Nak »

Artie wrote: So now you are saying that moral subjectivists will follow their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions except when they think they might be arrested by the authorities, fined, imprisoned, or worse? Well, that is reassuring... "If it wasn't for the fact that I might be arrested and imprisoned I would murder you if I felt like it..." Does that sound like something you could say?
Is that so different from your I am going to murder you if my calculus says that is most beneficial to society, and then relying on others to stop you from committing atrocities?

"For the greater good..." Does that sound like something you could say?

As for something that I could say, well, I can say that I have already murdered everyone I've ever wanted to murder. Which happened to be no one.
Now I am seriously confused. DI says and I quote: "The vast majority of laws don't even have anything to do with morality anyway." and "The first thing you need to realize is that a concept of morality has nothing at all to do with laws. Our laws are not based on morality, nor should they be." So are the rules of society, the laws, based on subjective morality or not?
The social rules and norms are based on subjective morality, as are some laws but not all laws. Again, I echo what DI is telling you, you need to realize morality and laws are not the same thing.

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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #97

Post by Artie »

Bust Nak wrote:
Artie wrote:So now you are saying that moral subjectivists will follow their own personal tastes, feelings, and opinions except when they think they might be arrested by the authorities, fined, imprisoned, or worse? Well, that is reassuring... "If it wasn't for the fact that I might be arrested and imprisoned I would murder you if I felt like it..." Does that sound like something you could say?
Is that so different from your I am going to murder you if my calculus says that is most beneficial to society, and then relying on others to stop you from committing atrocities?
If it was beneficial to society it wouldn't be murder... it would be a justified killing.
"For the greater good..." Does that sound like something you could say?
Yes. I would be honored to be among the ranks of those who have sacrificed their health or lives for the greater good... a medal posthumously would be nice... :)
As for something that I could say, well, I can say that I have already murdered everyone I've ever wanted to murder. Which happened to be no one.
Me too.

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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #98

Post by Bust Nak »

Artie wrote: If it was beneficial to society it wouldn't be murder... it would be a justified killing.
That's for the courts to decide. Again, morality isn't the same thing as legality, even if we assume that slaying someone for the greater good is moral.
Yes. I would be honored to be among the ranks of those who have sacrificed their health or lives for the greater good... a medal posthumously would be nice... :)
But presumably not among the ranks of those who have sacrificed other's health or lives for the greater good?
Me too.
Okay, no murders but how many justified killings?

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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #99

Post by Artie »

Bust Nak wrote:
Artie wrote:If it was beneficial to society it wouldn't be murder... it would be a justified killing.
That's for the courts to decide. Again, morality isn't the same thing as legality, even if we assume that slaying someone for the greater good is moral.
Yes. I would be honored to be among the ranks of those who have sacrificed their health or lives for the greater good... a medal posthumously would be nice... :)
But presumably not among the ranks of those who have sacrificed other's health or lives for the greater good?
No. I would if I had to but I would prefer to not be among those ranks.
Me too.
Okay, no murders but how many justified killings?
None. :)

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Re: Arguments for Non-Subjective Morality

Post #100

Post by Artie »

Bust Nak wrote:The social rules and norms are based on subjective morality, as are some laws but not all laws. Again, I echo what DI is telling you, you need to realize morality and laws are not the same thing.
I can read you know... DI says "a concept of morality has nothing at all to do with laws. Our laws are not based on morality, nor should they be." And you say that some laws are based on subjective morality.
"law codifies morality. In other words, the law formulates the culture’s morality into legal codes. Again, not every legal code refers to a moral issue, but most laws do have some moral significance." https://reasonandmeaning.com/2016/03/31 ... the-legal/

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