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Purple Knight
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 29, 2020 11:10 pm  Trickle-Down Morality Reply with quote

People generally assume equality when it comes to moral questions: They assume that all [sentient]* entities are equal and that if one murders and it is wrong, then another one that murders is also wrong.

*probably add this, not entirely sure

TheGreatDebate wrote:
I am just very curious as to why all the charges of “murderer,” “disgusting,” etc… are flying around. I assume you all are atheists? From what moral authority do you assign these terms from?


But this gem of a quote (referencing people calling the God of the Bible evil) I believe exposes the fact that underneath the surface, this is not the case.

If a government kills, for its own purposes, or to defend its ideology, it's war, not murder. If an individual person kills for these same reasons, it is.

I ask the question: Do you believe morality trickles down, or up, or in any other direction?

Or do you believe that higher moral authority equals more morally permissible actions?

Bonus question: If you're religious, and your answer was no, morality does not trickle down, how does this sit with the idea that one should imitate Jesus or some other figure? Wouldn't that mean that you definitely shouldn't try to do this, since [insert religious figure] had moral authority, and you don't, making the act you imitate potentially an evil one when you do it?
Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 31: Wed Mar 25, 2020 5:34 pm
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The Tanager wrote:
What evidence causes you to doubt this is even possible?


I doubt it because it's far enough removed from organisms we know are possible that I would really have to see a mega-entity before I believe one. I'm not saying anyone else is wrong for believing they're possible, this is really just personal preference.

What isn't personal preference is this: Suppose one exists. One of the virtually infinite gods proposed by humans exists. Let's say it's Allah (personally I judge this one likeliest of those I've heard of). What makes the difference to you between garden variety evil mega-entity pretending to be God, and actual God? If it's how the entity treats you, and you're female, you might conclude that this entity is "not God" even though it exists and has every power and quality the Qu'ran ascribes to it.

This is just personal preference again, but I would conclude that for almost every mega-entity I've heard of that humans believe is God. But I want to hear your opinion.

The Tanager wrote:
But other human inventions, such as made-up stories, made-up creatures, etc. are still overwhelmingly logical versus illogical.


Well, they need to be, to pique our interest. My mind can't follow a completely illogical story. Even one with "minor" inconsistencies is not as good to me as one without.

Morality needs no polishing. It exists to be followed, whether we like it or not. Granted it would be easier to follow if it is logical, but it doesn't exist to be easy to follow either; it exists to be followed, whether it is easy or not. And clearly, it does not need to be made easier for us, or any and all moral dictates would simply be lifted whenever they became inconvenient. In fact, I would say it exists to be as difficult to follow as possible.

The Tanager wrote:
Why side with the very few examples over the majority here, especially when you are all about following the majority in (1) logically possible ways to get a specific answer to a binary question and (2) what is moral?


Again, even if these people are the minority (and I don't think they are) I'm not just looking at 1st-tier survey results. I'm also looking at next-tier responses to those results. Inconsistent and right generates adulation and exaltation. "But, but, but that's a double standard!" generates only, "Lol whining racist retard go die in a ditch."

Well, I don't want to die in a ditch. Good attacks. Evil defends. I'm sick of defending. I want views that need no defence.

The Tanager wrote:
Whatever my answer is to that, that is not a way for you to support your claim here. It is not relevant to my claim here. My claim here is that the number of people saying X doesn't support (a) or (b) more than the other. You claim it supports (a) over (b), so explain to me how it does so.


You're the one who said that what people make up is overwhelmingly logical over illogical. I simply assume the same of the people, leaving us with probably few instances of people simply being contradictory and many instances of people being correct. If it was as obviously fallacious as you seem to think, there would be more attacks. Low-hanging fruit.

The Tanager wrote:
I think the only plausible reason for thinking murder is objectively wrong is if one believes God exists.


Then I assert that God's existence also proves that racism is wrong. Instead of consulting the majority, we should perhaps consult the Pope.

https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2018-09/pope-francis-racism-conference-h...

The Tanager wrote:
So, since few people call out these prejudiced people...therefore...(a)? Why? Maybe they are cowards. Maybe they never have to deal with these issues. Maybe they think it such a small segment of the population that it's not worth even laughing at their claims.


Maybe, but that seems unlikely. If they're cowards, I'll ignore them until they speak out because that's all I can do. I doubt people simply don't have to deal with these issues, and it seems like the biggest (or at least, most influential) segment of the populace.

The Tanager wrote:
No, it means that only those who are in power can be racist, whatever their race. The article was arguing that black people can't be racist because they don't have the power necessary to control society in prejudicial ways.


Right, only white people have that power, so only white people can be racist.

The Tanager wrote:
But they don't get exalted. They do get refuted (or simply ignored). That's why when the people are confronted with the flat contradiction they correct their previous formulation or clarify how they were using specific terms.

Who actually maintains that Nazi and black supremacist ideologies are both bad and that you can punch a Nazi racist or a prejudiced Nazi because of that bad ideology, but not a Black racist or a prejudiced African-American in spite of their equally bad ideology in the same breath? It seems to me that you are taking bits and pieces of things and piecing together a claim that no one really makes. Even the punch a Nazi article doesn't make that claim. It only talks about the ethics of punching a Nazi. If the author was asked if you should punch a Black supremacist, then she would either say (1) yes, if it seeks the same deadly ends Nazism seeks or (2) no, because while she may disagree with it, it is not as dangerous as Nazism.


There is no one alive who believes that it is permissible to punch minorities for their ideology. That leaves (2) as the truth.

https://www.splcenter.org/fighting-hate/extremist-files/group/new-black-panther-...

That means that encouraging violence against whites endangers no one.

...Which kind of suggests white people aren't people.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 32: Fri Mar 27, 2020 1:37 pm
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Purple Knight wrote:
I doubt it because it's far enough removed from organisms we know are possible that I would really have to see a mega-entity before I believe one. I'm not saying anyone else is wrong for believing they're possible, this is really just personal preference.


What do you mean by 'possible' here? We know a mega-entity is logically possible. Do you really mean that it's far enough removed from the beings that we know are actual?

Purple Knight wrote:
What isn't personal preference is this: Suppose one exists. One of the virtually infinite gods proposed by humans exists. Let's say it's Allah (personally I judge this one likeliest of those I've heard of). What makes the difference to you between garden variety evil mega-entity pretending to be God, and actual God? If it's how the entity treats you, and you're female, you might conclude that this entity is "not God" even though it exists and has every power and quality the Qu'ran ascribes to it.

This is just personal preference again, but I would conclude that for almost every mega-entity I've heard of that humans believe is God. But I want to hear your opinion.


I'm having trouble understanding your question. Could you rephrase it?

Purple Knight wrote:
Morality needs no polishing. It exists to be followed, whether we like it or not. Granted it would be easier to follow if it is logical, but it doesn't exist to be easy to follow either; it exists to be followed, whether it is easy or not. And clearly, it does not need to be made easier for us, or any and all moral dictates would simply be lifted whenever they became inconvenient. In fact, I would say it exists to be as difficult to follow as possible.


I largely agree.

Purple Knight wrote:


Quote:
Purple Knight said: I'm now considering that logic might not apply to morality.


...

Quote:
The Tanager said: What is it about morality that makes you treat it differently from the rest of reality, both objective and subjective realities?


Quote:
Purple Knight said: Because morality, in a sense, doesn't exist. Morality is defined entirely by the human mind, and it is neither logic nor math, potentially dispensing with any requirement to be consistent.


Quote:
The Tanager said: But other human inventions, such as made-up stories, made-up creatures, etc. are still overwhelmingly logical versus illogical. Why side with the very few examples over the majority here, especially when you are all about following the majority in (1) logically possible ways to get a specific answer to a binary question and (2) what is moral?


Again, even if these people are the minority (and I don't think they are) I'm not just looking at 1st-tier survey results. I'm also looking at next-tier responses to those results.


I think you are conflating two different arguments in this thread. My critique was in the specific context of you arguing that morality being a human invention gives us good reason to believe morality is illogical. I countered that most other human inventions are logical, so on this fact alone one should not conclude that morality is illogical but that it is logical. All I claim here is that human inventions other than morality are overwhelmingly logical.

Your response here, I think, refers back to what has been said about how people say one thing and then act in a different way regarding morality. I agree that people act inconsistently when it comes to ethics. Ultimately, I think we want to do what makes us feel good. Appearing logical to ourselves and to others makes us feel good because humans prize the logical. When confronted with acting in a way inconsistent with what we've previously claimed and doing what feels good, we often choose what feels good.

If we can feel good without thinking about things too hard, then we will do so and assume we are being logical all along even when we aren't being logical. When we get challenged and forced to think harder about it, we will usually try whatever it takes to make it appear that we were being logical all along. We want to eat our cake and have it too. We say our claim was misquoted, misunderstood, out of context, just ignore it and scream louder and insult our opponents, etc. We definitely don't like to admit we were previously wrong, but people don't usually openly praise inconsistency.

I think these actions actually show that we believe there is one standard for all. I think the universal initial human intuition is that there is one standard. I think it is perfectly rational to believe that our universal human intuitions are warranted until other defeaters come along. Atheism being true could be such a defeater but I think logic is on the side of theism over atheism.

Purple Knight wrote:
Inconsistent and right generates adulation and exaltation. "But, but, but that's a double standard!" generates only, "Lol whining racist retard go die in a ditch."

Well, I don't want to die in a ditch. Good attacks. Evil defends. I'm sick of defending. I want views that need no defence.


You are obviously tired of talking with unrational people who hurl insults instead of arguments. But do you really think their stubbornness equals truth? I can understand wanting the desire to believe what you feel like without worrying about reason (I'm not saying this describes you or that it doesn't), but what would that have to do with truth?

Purple Knight wrote:
Quote:
I think the only plausible reason for thinking murder is objectively wrong is if one believes God exists.


Then I assert that God's existence also proves that racism is wrong. Instead of consulting the majority, we should perhaps consult the Pope.


I'm not a Catholic but I agree with the Pope on this one. I would also make a stronger claim and say the only plausible reason for thinking racism is objectively wrong is God's existence.

Purple Knight wrote:
Right, only white people have that power, so only white people can be racist.


Using the term in that specific way, then yes if only white people have the power necessary to control society in prejudicial ways, then only white people (at that moment) could be racist. I don't think the "if" is true, though. There are tons of societies. Many have white people largely in power. Others have systems that came about or were transformed by prejudiced white people in the past and have not been foundationally changed since then by those who now have the power. Others have non-whites in power. The non-whites that have power can be racist. Probably some are and some aren't.

Purple Knight wrote:
There is no one alive who believes that it is permissible to punch minorities for their ideology. That leaves (2) as the truth.

https://www.splcenter.org/fighting-hate/extremist-files/group/new-black-panther-...

That means that encouraging violence against whites endangers no one.

...Which kind of suggests white people aren't people.


I don't think it is permissible to punch anyone for their ideology alone. But if they act on their ideology or even against their ideology and try to commit violence on someone, then I think it is permissible to punch them (and more) regardless of their race. I'm not the only one either. I think you are reacting against a vocal minority and assuming it of others wrongly.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 33: Fri Mar 27, 2020 7:20 pm
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The Tanager wrote:
What do you mean by 'possible' here? We know a mega-entity is logically possible. Do you really mean that it's far enough removed from the beings that we know are actual?


We don't know it's possible. The sorts of powers ascribed to most entities termed God are hardly necessarily possible.

The Tanager wrote:
I'm having trouble understanding your question. Could you rephrase it?


Let's say you meet one of these mega-entities. How do you decide whether it is God or a garden variety evil entity pretending to be God?

The Tanager wrote:
I think you are conflating two different arguments in this thread. My critique was in the specific context of you arguing that morality being a human invention gives us good reason to believe morality is illogical. I countered that most other human inventions are logical, so on this fact alone one should not conclude that morality is illogical but that it is logical. All I claim here is that human inventions other than morality are overwhelmingly logical.


Human inventions other than morality are overwhelmingly logical, for a specific reason: To appeal to other humans. That reason doesn't apply to morality, and morality alone out of all human creations.

If fiction, or math, or art, could serve its intended purpose without being logical, there would be no reason to expend extra effort making it so.

The Tanager wrote:
Your response here, I think, refers back to what has been said about how people say one thing and then act in a different way regarding morality. I agree that people act inconsistently when it comes to ethics. Ultimately, I think we want to do what makes us feel good. Appearing logical to ourselves and to others makes us feel good because humans prize the logical. When confronted with acting in a way inconsistent with what we've previously claimed and doing what feels good, we often choose what feels good.


That's true. Humans are also amazingly good at identifying when others do this, and they're great at policing each other, not just on morality. Usually the choice between what is logical based on one's goals and what feels good in the moment takes the form of instant gratification versus actually pursuing goals - the bucket of ice cream now, or exercise now and be skinny later. All humans correctly identify the bucket of ice cream as the wrong choice, even those who chose it.

The Tanager wrote:
If we can feel good without thinking about things too hard, then we will do so and assume we are being logical all along even when we aren't being logical. When we get challenged and forced to think harder about it, we will usually try whatever it takes to make it appear that we were being logical all along. We want to eat our cake and have it too. We say our claim was misquoted, misunderstood, out of context, just ignore it and scream louder and insult our opponents, etc. We definitely don't like to admit we were previously wrong, but people don't usually openly praise inconsistency.


They don't praise inconsistency. Not openly.

The Tanager wrote:
I think these actions actually show that we believe there is one standard for all. I think the universal initial human intuition is that there is one standard. I think it is perfectly rational to believe that our universal human intuitions are warranted until other defeaters come along. Atheism being true could be such a defeater but I think logic is on the side of theism over atheism.


Actually if theism is true, we at least know that the standard for God is different than the standard for humans. We know for a fact that I'm right, it's just a matter of which humans are bound by which standards. They could all happen to be bound by the same one but I doubt it.

I think it's more likely that the human desire of the lower is for the higher to be bound by the same morality as they are, but that the intuition of the higher is that they have to pretend they follow the same standard as the lower, but they know they're not actually bound by it.

I say it's more likely simply because of how adulated the higher always are. They are alphas, and the rest are omegas. They know it, you know it, I know it. But for the sake of society and law (that protects them the most) they pretend otherwise. The minute they admit they're really better than others, those others start trying to kill them, simply because it's the fastest way to equality: Kill those who are better. They're always comparatively very few.

The Tanager wrote:
You are obviously tired of talking with unrational people who hurl insults instead of arguments. But do you really think their stubbornness equals truth?


Yes. It is the final truth that alone remains possible after I have eliminated everything else.

The Tanager wrote:
I'm not a Catholic but I agree with the Pope on this one. I would also make a stronger claim and say the only plausible reason for thinking racism is objectively wrong is God's existence.


Then just pretend I'm one of those people who think God is the good in people and we agree absolutely.

The Tanager wrote:
Using the term in that specific way, then yes if only white people have the power necessary to control society in prejudicial ways, then only white people (at that moment) could be racist. I don't think the "if" is true, though. There are tons of societies. Many have white people largely in power. Others have systems that came about or were transformed by prejudiced white people in the past and have not been foundationally changed since then by those who now have the power. Others have non-whites in power. The non-whites that have power can be racist. Probably some are and some aren't.


Well, the person I lost to in a debate said that what was happening in South Africa was not an example of black racism. They put the whites off their land, confiscated the land, had the power to do it, and it still wasn't racist.

You can argue that it's wrong (but, you would be wrong) but you can't even argue that it was racist.

The Tanager wrote:
I don't think it is permissible to punch anyone for their ideology alone.


That makes you one of the set of all humans who believe that it is unacceptable to punch a black supremacist for their ideology alone.

There is only disagreement on what you can do to a white supremacist for his ideology alone.

If God is the good in people, then he says no to punching the black supremacist for his ideology, and maybe to punching a white supremacist for his. I'm not pasting together pieces of different arguments from different people; I'm looking at the purest good in people.

And as to the idea that nobody praises flat contradiction, well, you might want to look at this universally lauded infographic from Karl Popper.

For fun I'm posting the one where some racist, knuckle-dragging idiot thinks he has "destroyed" Popper's logic (which he can't do, because Popper is not attempting logic). Popper is using pure morality, and admitting the paradox. The "logic" doesn't apply equally to all things, and only a racist would think it was meant to.



(In case this has been sized down too far to read...)

Popper: Should a tolerant society tolerate intolerance?
Nazi: Yeah! Tolerate my ideas!
Popper: When we extend tolerance to those who are openly intolerant...
Hindenburg: Let's give Hitler a chance.
Popper: ...The tolerant ones end up being destroyed, and tolerance with them.
Any movement that preaches intolerance must be outside of the law. As paradoxical as it may seem, defending tolerance requires to not tolerate the intolerant.
(implied) ...And it only applies to Nazis.

The fool who thinks he has caught Popper relies on completely glossing over where Popper admits it's a paradox.

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