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"All people should be treated equally"

Stephen_Hawkins
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7/2/2012 3:12:49 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I need some quick philosophy arguments in favour of this motion for a debate. Our school has been challenged, our debate teacher accepted, and he's told us about it. Two days before the event. So I need some argument or arguments that will last 2, maybe 3 minutes. Preferably, it should work around Utilitarianism or Liberalism - that is, at least one argument should.

And please don't post "but the motion is wrong", because that's not the purpose of this thread. Counterarguments to the arguments someone else put is promoted and lauded, but just giving me reasons why "I am wrong" is an ignorance of reading this. I've only put this statement because I've done this before, and I got "You are wrong" about ten times.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

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DetectableNinja
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7/2/2012 3:17:23 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
You are wrong. ;)

Nah, but seriously--I'm not very well-versed in philosophy. Sorry mate.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
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Or any man that breathes on earth.

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Kinesis
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7/2/2012 3:24:46 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I would make the distinction between being treated 'equally' and being treated the same. Obviously different people have different needs and situations dictate different responses depending on the context. A utilitarian framework would emphasise the notion that different people's preferences (or happiness or desires) should be weighed equally when making moral decisions. Under that framework, all people being treated equally would simply mean that we value the utility of each person the same.
socialpinko
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7/2/2012 3:35:28 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
I agree with Kinesis in that equally and the same are not necessarily the same. Definitely emphasize that. I also think that you should go with the non-aggression principle, also known as the law of equal liberty. We're all free in the most equal sense to do that which doesn't infringe on the ability of others to do the same. Perhaps argue from the fact that freedom is a necessary requisite to the attainment of value?
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Stephen_Hawkins
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7/2/2012 3:53:36 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
If anyone can start a little of how I'd go down a route, it'd be nicer. I mean, I can say "utilitarianism says so" but I need a convincing way of stating so.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

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Lasagna
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7/2/2012 3:57:49 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Utilitarianism sucks balls. At any rate, I would start by shirking the BOP: shouldn't it be shown why certain people shouldn't be treated equally? Logically one would assume equal treatment from the get-go and then provide reasoning to the contrary afterwards based on the qualities of the particular person we are treating. From that point, you can render said qualitative judgments subjective using any number of methods. The only qualities that will persist will be those in which the person took action and responsibility for the state they are in, most notably the criminal/immoral types. For egregious criminality there is still some room to introduce subjectivity, but many are going to be pretty comfortable with judging these people harshly so I would stick to pointing out the futility of such harsh judgment. What right do we have to judge? Judge not lest thee be judged... Such criminals create their own disfunction through their egregious acts - these acts carry inherent punishments that do not require you to treat/judge them differently than others. By treating someone unfairly you are acting unethically and only bringing yourself down to their level. "Justice" can be defined as "fairness," so by treating someone unfairly you are creating injustice. You could also introduce the fable of Kane and Abel and explain that there was a reason God told the people not to judge Kane. Unfortunately most people really don't understand this point so good luck -_-)
Rob
Kinesis
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7/2/2012 4:04:24 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/2/2012 3:53:36 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
If anyone can start a little of how I'd go down a route, it'd be nicer. I mean, I can say "utilitarianism says so" but I need a convincing way of stating so.

I would emphasise the notion of putting oneself in the shoes of other people and considering things from their perspective. If you have a mindset which values other people and considers their interests as well as your own, it isn't a difficult leap from that to the notion that when making moral decisions we should value the interests of all the people affected by the action - i.e. a utilitarian approach.
RoyLatham
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7/2/2012 4:11:34 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
The resolution is ambiguous. If "treated equally" means that facts about the person irrelevant to the treatment should not be factored in, then the resolution makes sense. Thus, equal treatment under the law is affirmed. However, other times people are not equal in ays that are relevant. It is justified to prefer a qualified brain surgeon to an eager amateur with power tools. Fat people are not equals to mall ones as jockeys. Short people are not equal to tall ones as basketball players.

So, when affirming the resolution give a speech about the importance of equal treatment under the law and denounce racial discrimination. Claim the only important cases are equal treatment under the law and irrational discrimination in everyday life. When negating the resolution give examples when discrimination is clearly justified. claim that everyone knows about unjustified discrimination, so that the important cases are when it's justified.
darkkermit
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7/2/2012 4:35:55 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
never mind, i saw that your affirming it. Its a difficult resolution to affirm an argument because even the Declaration of Independence stated that "it is self-evident". Not that I agree that its self-evident, but its difficult to argue.

The best argument I can think of is to use "rule of law" as a basis, in which all people are equal under the law and state how the "rule of law" is the basis for economic growth and prosperity. It seems kind of self-evident that being treated equally causes people to be more prosperious.

By treated equally, it would be easiest in reference to acquiring property, liberty, and to the right of life. Basically the basic negative rights.
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jedipengiun
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7/2/2012 4:41:03 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Could you argue that there is no premise to argue unequally?
With things such as a person needs help or that a person require's to be treated more than others are not sufficient arguments in that they are promoting equality where there would otherwise be non?

That's all I've got off top of me head. Sorry. I'll get thinking.
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: At 6/22/2012 1:46:11 PM, Kinesis wrote:
: Also, as an Englishman I'm obligated to be prejudiced against gingers and the French.

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jedipengiun
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7/2/2012 4:45:37 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Arguments in favour of inequality, more often than not (unsubstantiated claim, my bad) have proven to be negative in terms of social progress or in utility terms. Inequality on race was abolished in favour of equality between races. As a generation we are in the midst of a debate where equality between sexuality is in the papers a lot, i'm talking of the debate for gay marriage. The feminist movement.

How could I have not realised! The classic liberal arguments and positions from Mill's On Liberty!
Things that make me happy!

: At 6/22/2012 1:46:11 PM, Kinesis wrote:
: Also, as an Englishman I'm obligated to be prejudiced against gingers and the French.

: At 8/27/2012 10:00:07 PM, FREEDO wrote:
: Every self-respecting philosopher needs to smoke a pipe.
Stephen_Hawkins
Posts: 5,316
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7/2/2012 4:54:37 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
How not to respond to someone asking for help in a debate.

At 7/2/2012 3:57:49 PM, Lasagna wrote:
Utilitarianism sucks balls.

Right off of the bat, just sets the tone. No justification, nor any rationale, just say "screw the system and do what I say instead". There was a (long) reason for running Utilitarianism (long story with no substance: It's a BP debate), but screw that, just say it sucks balls.

At any rate, I would start by shirking the BOP: shouldn't it be shown why certain people shouldn't be treated equally?

And by trying to pull a technicality that is cheap and at best pretty piss poor, I'll convince them with this magic trick of talking technicalities of the semantics.

Logically one would assume equal treatment from the get-go and then provide reasoning to the contrary afterwards based on the qualities of the particular person we are treating.

Which is essentially saying "logic says so", which doesn't help.

From that point, you can render said qualitative judgments subjective using any number of methods. The only qualities that will persist will be those in which the person took action and responsibility for the state they are in, most notably the criminal/immoral types.

Which is giving them arguments.

For egregious criminality there is still some room to introduce subjectivity, but many are going to be pretty comfortable with judging these people harshly so I would stick to pointing out the futility of such harsh judgment. What right do we have to judge?

Not only does this give them arguments, but it is making me stronger against the resolution at this point.

Judge not lest thee be judged... Such criminals create their own disfunction through their egregious acts - these acts carry inherent punishments that do not require you to treat/judge them differently than others. By treating someone unfairly you are acting unethically and only bringing yourself down to their level. "Justice" can be defined as "fairness," so by treating someone unfairly you are creating injustice.

You could also introduce the fable of Kane

Cain

and Abel and explain that there was a reason God told the people not to judge Kane. Unfortunately most people really don't understand this point so good luck -_-)

In short, can someone give me an argument that runs Utilitarianism or Liberalism (classical) to affirm the motion, that actually is convincing in favour of the resolution. Thanks.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
Stephen_Hawkins
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7/2/2012 4:55:52 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/2/2012 4:45:37 PM, jedipengiun wrote:
Arguments in favour of inequality, more often than not (unsubstantiated claim, my bad) have proven to be negative in terms of social progress or in utility terms. Inequality on race was abolished in favour of equality between races. As a generation we are in the midst of a debate where equality between sexuality is in the papers a lot, i'm talking of the debate for gay marriage. The feminist movement.

How could I have not realised! The classic liberal arguments and positions from Mill's On Liberty!

Ah. Now, I have Mill's Utilitarianism & On Liberty, and I've been scouring through it for his arguments, as well as Rousseau's book, and got that basic info down. BUT the feminist movement reminded me of "On the Subjugation of Women" and that's got basically my stock now. Thanks!
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
Lasagna
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7/2/2012 6:31:55 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/2/2012 4:35:55 PM, darkkermit wrote:
never mind, i saw that your affirming it. Its a difficult resolution to affirm an argument because even the Declaration of Independence stated that "it is self-evident". Not that I agree that its self-evident, but its difficult to argue.

The best argument I can think of is to use "rule of law" as a basis, in which all people are equal under the law and state how the "rule of law" is the basis for economic growth and prosperity. It seems kind of self-evident that being treated equally causes people to be more prosperious.

By treated equally, it would be easiest in reference to acquiring property, liberty, and to the right of life. Basically the basic negative rights.

Using economics to justify moral positions is about as distasteful to me as using Ptolemaic science to justify them.
Rob
Lasagna
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7/2/2012 7:03:42 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/2/2012 4:54:37 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
How not to respond to someone asking for help in a debate.


At 7/2/2012 3:57:49 PM, Lasagna wrote:
Utilitarianism sucks balls.

Right off of the bat, just sets the tone. No justification, nor any rationale, just say "screw the system and do what I say instead". There was a (long) reason for running Utilitarianism (long story with no substance: It's a BP debate), but screw that, just say it sucks balls.

Just my opinion. Sorry it made you mad, bro.

At any rate, I would start by shirking the BOP: shouldn't it be shown why certain people shouldn't be treated equally?

And by trying to pull a technicality that is cheap and at best pretty piss poor, I'll convince them with this magic trick of talking technicalities of the semantics.

LOL trying to establish the BOP is the most legitimate tactic you can get. It sets the perspective of the debate. If the BOP is in your court and shouldn't, then your arguments are almost certainly going to fail. For instance if you argue with a Christian and accept the burden of proof to prove that God doesn't exist, then you're likely to get creamed. If you don't know this by now, then you need all the help you can get! You'll learn with experience that it is the semantic tactics which are cheap.

Logically one would assume equal treatment from the get-go and then provide reasoning to the contrary afterwards based on the qualities of the particular person we are treating.

Which is essentially saying "logic says so", which doesn't help.

Yes, by all means never use logical arguments to prove your point. That's just... cheap and unhelpful.

From that point, you can render said qualitative judgments subjective using any number of methods. The only qualities that will persist will be those in which the person took action and responsibility for the state they are in, most notably the criminal/immoral types.

Which is giving them arguments.

If I were you I would prepare for this argument instead of hoping they don't come up with it. Pointing out that some people demand different treatment, through their own egregious acts, is bound to come up at some point.

For egregious criminality there is still some room to introduce subjectivity, but many are going to be pretty comfortable with judging these people harshly so I would stick to pointing out the futility of such harsh judgment. What right do we have to judge?

Not only does this give them arguments, but it is making me stronger against the resolution at this point.

That's because you don't understand my point.

Judge not lest thee be judged... Such criminals create their own disfunction through their egregious acts - these acts carry inherent punishments that do not require you to treat/judge them differently than others. By treating someone unfairly you are acting unethically and only bringing yourself down to their level. "Justice" can be defined as "fairness," so by treating someone unfairly you are creating injustice.

You could also introduce the fable of Kane

Cain

Mr. "I don't use cheap tactics" sure is quick to point out a petty spelling error.

and Abel and explain that there was a reason God told the people not to judge Kane. Unfortunately most people really don't understand this point so good luck -_-)

In short, can someone give me an argument that runs Utilitarianism or Liberalism (classical) to affirm the motion, that actually is convincing in favour of the resolution. Thanks.

If you didn't like my suggestion, then don't use it. Creating a post just to b!tch at me for it when I was just offering my sincere help is pretty lame. Do you want to take out your aggressions on me because you get picked on at school or something? Geez!
Rob
Stephen_Hawkins
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7/3/2012 1:23:32 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Opinions are fine, when the topic is "What do you think of the statement". When I specifically - SPECIFICALLY - said don't just put "it's wrong", then I am going to get annoyed, because it seems as if you've just ignored the actual post and are either maliciously trying derail it or simply did not read/comprehend the OP.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
jedipengiun
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7/3/2012 6:29:29 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
How about Rawls veil of ignorance? I remember our teacher saying that this was a strong argument for equality and fairness. I always figured it was loaded but i'd assumed I had missed out on something.

http://plato.stanford.edu...
Things that make me happy!

: At 6/22/2012 1:46:11 PM, Kinesis wrote:
: Also, as an Englishman I'm obligated to be prejudiced against gingers and the French.

: At 8/27/2012 10:00:07 PM, FREEDO wrote:
: Every self-respecting philosopher needs to smoke a pipe.
darkkermit
Posts: 11,204
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7/3/2012 8:59:20 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/2/2012 6:31:55 PM, Lasagna wrote:
At 7/2/2012 4:35:55 PM, darkkermit wrote:
never mind, i saw that your affirming it. Its a difficult resolution to affirm an argument because even the Declaration of Independence stated that "it is self-evident". Not that I agree that its self-evident, but its difficult to argue.

The best argument I can think of is to use "rule of law" as a basis, in which all people are equal under the law and state how the "rule of law" is the basis for economic growth and prosperity. It seems kind of self-evident that being treated equally causes people to be more prosperious.

By treated equally, it would be easiest in reference to acquiring property, liberty, and to the right of life. Basically the basic negative rights.

Using economics to justify moral positions is about as distasteful to me as using Ptolemaic science to justify them.

Rarely do I make a justification that is not based on economic principles :p.

I actually find using economic principles really useful because at the heart of economic analysis using walrasian equilibrium is welfare analysis, which is used to maximize utility.
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Nome
Posts: 40
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7/3/2012 5:49:39 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
It is the mark of the Sabathon, as I have, that we shall make the existential choice to defy the purpose the universe has set out for us. And that purpose is to cause pain. So I shall be evil and deflect pain.
Knologist_Prime
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7/4/2012 8:24:15 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
Nature/Existence, does not treat anyone or anything, equally.

But, people should approach/treat other people, intelligently.

Various factors warrant such an approach. That's the course of wisdom.

Try it, you will see this repeated over and over again by everyone to whom they have to have some sort of exchange.

People will do by 'nature' what Nature/Existence does, and that's show no 'equality' toward the person or thing, but will use 'intelligence' to access how they match up and proceed during the momentary exchange.
Truth, is bias." - Knologist-Prime
"Words, means, things." - Knologist-Prime
"The Rules of Grammar in any Language, MUST be obeyed." - Knologist-Prime
"Artifacts are FACTS." - Knologist-Prime
Nome
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7/4/2012 3:14:59 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/4/2012 8:24:15 AM, Knologist_Prime wrote:
Nature/Existence, does not treat anyone or anything, equally.

But, people should approach/treat other people, intelligently.

Various factors warrant such an approach. That's the course of wisdom.

Try it, you will see this repeated over and over again by everyone to whom they have to have some sort of exchange.

People will do by 'nature' what Nature/Existence does, and that's show no 'equality' toward the person or thing, but will use 'intelligence' to access how they match up and proceed during the momentary exchange.

From whence is this ought.
KeytarHero
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7/4/2012 8:23:40 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/2/2012 3:53:36 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
If anyone can start a little of how I'd go down a route, it'd be nicer. I mean, I can say "utilitarianism says so" but I need a convincing way of stating so.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't utilitarianism the position that whatever benefits the good of society is what is morally acceptable? Therefore it would be morally acceptable to kill a homeless person to give needed transplants to rich philanthropists? That doesn't seem like equal treatment to me. I could be mistaken, though.
phantom
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7/4/2012 8:46:48 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Utilitarianism is a little tricky I think, mainly because consequences of the way you treat people are so many. At first glance, you might say treating Hitler the same way you would treat an ordinary citizen would be morally implausible, but you'd need to analyze it a bit more. Causing Hitler happiness, in accordance with utilitarianist principles, might lead to different negative consequences due to his nature. You would have more motive to treat a good person better than a bad person and so in a sense, people should not be treated equally. However, if we go a bit further we could still argue the proposition. We could say, in absence of contrasting effects on happiness, people should be treated just the same. In other words, the way we treat people should be based on the afterwards affect on net-happiness(since we're arguing utilitarianism). But if in a given scenario between behavior towards two individuals, the possible effects on happiness are the same, there is no reason not to treat the two individuals equally. Happiness is what is important. It's the goal of utilitarianism. Thus, there is no reason to treat two individuals differentely if the effect on happiness is just the same either way. In that way, you could argue all people should be treated equally.
"Music is a zen-like ecstatic state where you become the new man of the future, the Nietzschean merger of Apollo and Dionysus." Ray Manzarek (The Doors)
Lasagna
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7/5/2012 11:05:53 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/4/2012 8:23:40 PM, KeytarHero wrote:
At 7/2/2012 3:53:36 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
If anyone can start a little of how I'd go down a route, it'd be nicer. I mean, I can say "utilitarianism says so" but I need a convincing way of stating so.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't utilitarianism the position that whatever benefits the good of society is what is morally acceptable? Therefore it would be morally acceptable to kill a homeless person to give needed transplants to rich philanthropists? That doesn't seem like equal treatment to me. I could be mistaken, though.

You are spot-on Mr. Hero, which is why utilitarianism is total quackery. You can't define a util, and even if you could you still couldn't hope to count them. So basically you have a theory in which you can make an argument for anything, even cold-blooded murder. Hell, if Einstein threatened to hold back the special theory, a utilitarian would let him do any number of heinous acts to keep him placated enough to produce!
Rob
Stephen_Hawkins
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7/5/2012 12:26:46 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/5/2012 11:05:53 AM, Lasagna wrote:
At 7/4/2012 8:23:40 PM, KeytarHero wrote:
At 7/2/2012 3:53:36 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
If anyone can start a little of how I'd go down a route, it'd be nicer. I mean, I can say "utilitarianism says so" but I need a convincing way of stating so.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't utilitarianism the position that whatever benefits the good of society is what is morally acceptable? Therefore it would be morally acceptable to kill a homeless person to give needed transplants to rich philanthropists? That doesn't seem like equal treatment to me. I could be mistaken, though.

You are spot-on Mr. Hero, which is why utilitarianism is total quackery. You can't define a util, and even if you could you still couldn't hope to count them. So basically you have a theory in which you can make an argument for anything, even cold-blooded murder. Hell, if Einstein threatened to hold back the special theory, a utilitarian would let him do any number of heinous acts to keep him placated enough to produce!

Except that's not what Utilitarianism says. When you start misinterpreting it, then it causes problems. Is it OK to kill homeless people to give a transplant to a richer man? If you charge the richer man ten million pounds, which you can use to save 50 more innocent lives, which is better? This itself is even debatable in Utilitarianism.

And Lasagna, I'd debate you on the rationality of Utilitarianism.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
Lasagna
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7/5/2012 1:41:48 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/5/2012 12:26:46 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
At 7/5/2012 11:05:53 AM, Lasagna wrote:
At 7/4/2012 8:23:40 PM, KeytarHero wrote:
At 7/2/2012 3:53:36 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
If anyone can start a little of how I'd go down a route, it'd be nicer. I mean, I can say "utilitarianism says so" but I need a convincing way of stating so.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't utilitarianism the position that whatever benefits the good of society is what is morally acceptable? Therefore it would be morally acceptable to kill a homeless person to give needed transplants to rich philanthropists? That doesn't seem like equal treatment to me. I could be mistaken, though.

You are spot-on Mr. Hero, which is why utilitarianism is total quackery. You can't define a util, and even if you could you still couldn't hope to count them. So basically you have a theory in which you can make an argument for anything, even cold-blooded murder. Hell, if Einstein threatened to hold back the special theory, a utilitarian would let him do any number of heinous acts to keep him placated enough to produce!

Except that's not what Utilitarianism says. When you start misinterpreting it, then it causes problems. Is it OK to kill homeless people to give a transplant to a richer man? If you charge the richer man ten million pounds, which you can use to save 50 more innocent lives, which is better? This itself is even debatable in Utilitarianism.

And Lasagna, I'd debate you on the rationality of Utilitarianism.

Why are you so quick to assign monetary labels to utils? A debate sounds like a good idea except that debating against capitalism or utilitarianism on this site is pretty futile. At best I could hope for satisfying myself while a bunch of people vote for you in order to protect their own ideology.
Rob
Stephen_Hawkins
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7/5/2012 1:46:50 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/5/2012 1:41:48 PM, Lasagna wrote:
At 7/5/2012 12:26:46 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
At 7/5/2012 11:05:53 AM, Lasagna wrote:
At 7/4/2012 8:23:40 PM, KeytarHero wrote:
At 7/2/2012 3:53:36 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
If anyone can start a little of how I'd go down a route, it'd be nicer. I mean, I can say "utilitarianism says so" but I need a convincing way of stating so.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't utilitarianism the position that whatever benefits the good of society is what is morally acceptable? Therefore it would be morally acceptable to kill a homeless person to give needed transplants to rich philanthropists? That doesn't seem like equal treatment to me. I could be mistaken, though.

You are spot-on Mr. Hero, which is why utilitarianism is total quackery. You can't define a util, and even if you could you still couldn't hope to count them. So basically you have a theory in which you can make an argument for anything, even cold-blooded murder. Hell, if Einstein threatened to hold back the special theory, a utilitarian would let him do any number of heinous acts to keep him placated enough to produce!

Except that's not what Utilitarianism says. When you start misinterpreting it, then it causes problems. Is it OK to kill homeless people to give a transplant to a richer man? If you charge the richer man ten million pounds, which you can use to save 50 more innocent lives, which is better? This itself is even debatable in Utilitarianism.

And Lasagna, I'd debate you on the rationality of Utilitarianism.

Why are you so quick to assign monetary labels to utils?

It costs 40k to treat cancer. Say you earn millions from this event. Your cancer cures saves around 50+ lives. Monetary Units on life are essential when looking at what we can do. When we have an infinite supply of money, get back to me. But money buys cures for diseases, and therefore money buys lives.

A debate sounds like a good idea except that debating against capitalism or utilitarianism on this site is pretty futile. At best I could hope for satisfying myself while a bunch of people vote for you in order to protect their own ideology.

lol, in other words, I'm making a loophole for myself in the future.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
Lasagna
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7/5/2012 3:03:56 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
At 7/5/2012 1:46:50 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
At 7/5/2012 1:41:48 PM, Lasagna wrote:
At 7/5/2012 12:26:46 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
At 7/5/2012 11:05:53 AM, Lasagna wrote:
At 7/4/2012 8:23:40 PM, KeytarHero wrote:
At 7/2/2012 3:53:36 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
If anyone can start a little of how I'd go down a route, it'd be nicer. I mean, I can say "utilitarianism says so" but I need a convincing way of stating so.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't utilitarianism the position that whatever benefits the good of society is what is morally acceptable? Therefore it would be morally acceptable to kill a homeless person to give needed transplants to rich philanthropists? That doesn't seem like equal treatment to me. I could be mistaken, though.

You are spot-on Mr. Hero, which is why utilitarianism is total quackery. You can't define a util, and even if you could you still couldn't hope to count them. So basically you have a theory in which you can make an argument for anything, even cold-blooded murder. Hell, if Einstein threatened to hold back the special theory, a utilitarian would let him do any number of heinous acts to keep him placated enough to produce!

Except that's not what Utilitarianism says. When you start misinterpreting it, then it causes problems. Is it OK to kill homeless people to give a transplant to a richer man? If you charge the richer man ten million pounds, which you can use to save 50 more innocent lives, which is better? This itself is even debatable in Utilitarianism.

And Lasagna, I'd debate you on the rationality of Utilitarianism.

Why are you so quick to assign monetary labels to utils?

It costs 40k to treat cancer. Say you earn millions from this event. Your cancer cures saves around 50+ lives. Monetary Units on life are essential when looking at what we can do. When we have an infinite supply of money, get back to me. But money buys cures for diseases, and therefore money buys lives.

Monetary units on life are essential to someone that's using a theory that depends on measurements you can't make. There's never been any good estimate at how much a life is worth in dollars... And I'd imagine treating cancer is at best an average of 40k, sometimes much less or more depending on type and severity. Every value you're giving is a load of hot air. Once your arrogant assumptions at what life is worth and what cancer is worth and what disease is worth and what happiness is worth (etc. ad infinitum) are translated erroneously into dollars, you can then erroneously translate dollars into utils. This process is so unweildy and ridiculous you could use it to justify just about anything.

A debate sounds like a good idea except that debating against capitalism or utilitarianism on this site is pretty futile. At best I could hope for satisfying myself while a bunch of people vote for you in order to protect their own ideology.

lol, in other words, I'm making a loophole for myself in the future.

Unless the subject-matter is ideologically inert, there really isn't any such thing as a fair debate.
Rob