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Good= -(Evil)

R0b1Billion
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3/13/2014 12:35:33 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Good and evil exist only as attributes of people. It is not defined to speak about morality without it being related to the actions of a person.

Evil arises out of the mind's inability to single out the inherent bias that all intelligent beings possess. We naturally think of ourselves first, and that natural impetus is combined with our creative desires. The artificial is our creation to deliver on these desires, and while most all of our progress is arguably of positive value to society, it is not arguable that it is paved with the selfish desires of those who seek only to secure their own interests.

Our desire to secure our interests creates a foundation for our social beliefs. What's "good" for society, in our eyes, is what is best for ourselves, with perhaps some but certainly less consideration for others' welfare.

The state of being good can be achieved only by identifying and eliminated the impetus of bias within us. One easy test of goodness is to apply Kant's Categorical Imperative: act in a way that, if repeated by anybody or everybody else, would not be unjust to the privileges of others.
Beliefs in a nutshell:
- The Ends never justify the Means.
- Objectivity is secondary to subjectivity.
- The War on Drugs is the worst policy in the U.S.
- Most people worship technology as a religion.
- Computers will never become sentient.
phantom
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3/13/2014 2:37:39 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness

Wow, as a Nietzsche admirer I disagree with this so much.
"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)
xXCryptoXx
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3/13/2014 3:00:45 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/13/2014 2:37:39 PM, phantom wrote:
At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness

Wow, as a Nietzsche admirer I disagree with this so much.

I hate it when it gets complicated.

What do you have against what I stated?
Nolite Timere
TheWarrior
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3/14/2014 11:49:33 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness
This is not that simple. sometimes selfishness is needed for the good and selflessness can be used for evil. Grey areas always exist. Just because something is good now does not mean it will later be good. Sometimes it can become evil.
https://docs.google.com...
Lead Enforcer of the DDO Revolutionary Party
Dazz
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3/14/2014 1:09:32 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 11:49:33 AM, TheWarrior wrote:
At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness
This is not that simple. sometimes selfishness is needed for the good and selflessness can be used for evil. Grey areas always exist. Just because something is good now does not mean it will later be good. Sometimes it can become evil.

Any example?
Remove the "I want", remainder is the "peace". ~Al-Ghazali~
"This time will also pass", a dose to cure both; the excitement & the grievance. ~Ayaz~
ADreamOfLiberty
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3/14/2014 1:38:48 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
There are things in this world that are absolutely right, and absolutely wrong. There is a line between right and wrong that rational debate isn't even needed to divide.
LOL, yeah, it's pretty amazing how they think they can "reason" with you. - Sidewalker, speaking of advocates for sexual deviancy.

So, my advice, Liberty, is to go somewhere else. Leave, and never come back. - YYW

And that's what I did. Contact me at http://www.edeb8.com... by the same user name if you have anything you'd like to say.
TUF
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3/14/2014 8:03:21 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
I think calling anything inherintly good or evil is slightly foolish, and full of contradictions. The very concept of morality itself seems to be flawed.
"I've got to go and grab a shirt" ~ Airmax1227
SeventhProfessor
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3/14/2014 8:08:52 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 1:38:48 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
There are things in this world that are absolutely right, and absolutely wrong. There is a line between right and wrong that rational debate isn't even needed to divide.

lol
#UnbanTheMadman

#StandWithBossy

#BetOnThett

"bossy r u like 85 years old and have lost ur mind"
~mysteriouscrystals

"I've honestly never seen seventh post anything that wasn't completely idiotic in a trying-to-be-funny way."
~F-16

https://docs.google.com...
ADreamOfLiberty
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3/14/2014 8:17:37 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 8:03:21 PM, TUF wrote:
I think calling anything inherintly good or evil is slightly foolish, and full of contradictions. The very concept of morality itself seems to be flawed.

Didn't you hear me? No rational debate is needed to decide. Who cares if you think it's full of contradictions or flawed?

At 3/14/2014 8:08:52 PM, SeventhProfessor wrote:
At 3/14/2014 1:38:48 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
There are things in this world that are absolutely right, and absolutely wrong. There is a line between right and wrong that rational debate isn't even needed to divide.

lol

Something funny?
LOL, yeah, it's pretty amazing how they think they can "reason" with you. - Sidewalker, speaking of advocates for sexual deviancy.

So, my advice, Liberty, is to go somewhere else. Leave, and never come back. - YYW

And that's what I did. Contact me at http://www.edeb8.com... by the same user name if you have anything you'd like to say.
SeventhProfessor
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3/14/2014 8:19:06 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 8:17:37 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
At 3/14/2014 8:08:52 PM, SeventhProfessor wrote:
At 3/14/2014 1:38:48 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
There are things in this world that are absolutely right, and absolutely wrong. There is a line between right and wrong that rational debate isn't even needed to divide.

lol

Something funny?

l'm pretty sure you were kidding...
#UnbanTheMadman

#StandWithBossy

#BetOnThett

"bossy r u like 85 years old and have lost ur mind"
~mysteriouscrystals

"I've honestly never seen seventh post anything that wasn't completely idiotic in a trying-to-be-funny way."
~F-16

https://docs.google.com...
ADreamOfLiberty
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3/14/2014 8:20:32 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 8:19:06 PM, SeventhProfessor wrote:
At 3/14/2014 8:17:37 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
At 3/14/2014 8:08:52 PM, SeventhProfessor wrote:
At 3/14/2014 1:38:48 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
There are things in this world that are absolutely right, and absolutely wrong. There is a line between right and wrong that rational debate isn't even needed to divide.

lol

Something funny?

l'm pretty sure you were kidding...

Well it's a bit more underhanded than that, but you are right I was not serious.
LOL, yeah, it's pretty amazing how they think they can "reason" with you. - Sidewalker, speaking of advocates for sexual deviancy.

So, my advice, Liberty, is to go somewhere else. Leave, and never come back. - YYW

And that's what I did. Contact me at http://www.edeb8.com... by the same user name if you have anything you'd like to say.
SeventhProfessor
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3/14/2014 8:22:01 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 8:20:32 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
At 3/14/2014 8:19:06 PM, SeventhProfessor wrote:
At 3/14/2014 8:17:37 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
At 3/14/2014 8:08:52 PM, SeventhProfessor wrote:
At 3/14/2014 1:38:48 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
There are things in this world that are absolutely right, and absolutely wrong. There is a line between right and wrong that rational debate isn't even needed to divide.

lol

Something funny?

l'm pretty sure you were kidding...

Well it's a bit more underhanded than that, but you are right I was not serious.

lol, I got the uderhandedness, and laughed.
#UnbanTheMadman

#StandWithBossy

#BetOnThett

"bossy r u like 85 years old and have lost ur mind"
~mysteriouscrystals

"I've honestly never seen seventh post anything that wasn't completely idiotic in a trying-to-be-funny way."
~F-16

https://docs.google.com...
R0b1Billion
Posts: 3,732
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3/14/2014 9:45:35 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 11:49:33 AM, TheWarrior wrote:
At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness
This is not that simple. sometimes selfishness is needed for the good and selflessness can be used for evil.

Absolutely false. Give me your examples and I will rebut them like I have done countless times with others on this site.

Grey areas always exist. Just because something is good now does not mean it will later be good. Sometimes it can become evil.

You are talking about ends, not means, and your "grey areas" are a result of this ambiguity. Selfishness vs selflessness is an attribute of intention, not results. Results are always infinite and complex, and we never can know whether a different action would have produced a "better or worse" result. What we can judge is intent. If I see you coming behind me, I may choose to wait a moment and hold the door, or shoot through because I feel I have more important business to attend to. One action is clearly, unambiguously selfish, and one is the opposite. If you get lost in intent like a consequentialist (i.e., utilitarian), then yes, the grey areas overwhelm you immediately and morality becomes completely relative. Who's to say that my selfless act of holding the door didn't cause that person to get in their car a bit earlier and thus die in a car accident? Discussion of ends is irrelevant to morality.
Beliefs in a nutshell:
- The Ends never justify the Means.
- Objectivity is secondary to subjectivity.
- The War on Drugs is the worst policy in the U.S.
- Most people worship technology as a religion.
- Computers will never become sentient.
ADreamOfLiberty
Posts: 1,570
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3/14/2014 10:48:05 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Ok, here is my real take on this:

At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness

"To redeem both man and morality, it is the concept of "selfishness" that one has to redeem.

The first step is to assert man"s right to a moral existence"that is: to recognize his need of a moral code to guide the course and the fulfillment of his own life . . . .

The reasons why man needs a moral code will tell you that the purpose of morality is to define man"s proper values and interests, that concern with his own interests is the essence of a moral existence, and that man must be the beneficiary of his own moral actions.

Since all values have to be gained and/or kept by men"s actions, any breach between actor and beneficiary necessitates an injustice: the sacrifice of some men to others, of the actors to the nonactors, of the moral to the immoral. Nothing could ever justify such a breach, and no one ever has.

The choice of the beneficiary of moral values is merely a preliminary or introductory issue in the field of morality. It is not a substitute for morality nor a criterion of moral value, as altruism has made it. Neither is it a moral primary: it has to be derived from and validated by the fundamental premises of a moral system.

The Objectivist ethics holds that the actor must always be the beneficiary of his action and that man must act for his own rational self-interest. But his right to do so is derived from his nature as man and from the function of moral values in human life"and, therefore, is applicable only in the context of a rational, objectively demonstrated and validated code of moral principles which define and determine his actual self-interest. It is not a license "to do as he pleases" and it is not applicable to the altruists" image of a "selfish" brute nor to any man motivated by irrational emotions, feelings, urges, wishes or whims.

This is said as a warning against the kind of "Nietzschean egoists" who, in fact, are a product of the altruist morality and represent the other side of the altruist coin: the men who believe that any action, regardless of its nature, is good if it is intended for one"s own benefit. Just as the satisfaction of the irrational desires of others is not a criterion of moral value, neither is the satisfaction of one"s own irrational desires. Morality is not a contest of whims . . . .

A similar type of error is committed by the man who declares that since man must be guided by his own independent judgment, any action he chooses to take is moral if he chooses it. One"s own independent judgment is the means by which one must choose one"s actions, but it is not a moral criterion nor a moral validation: only reference to a demonstrable principle can validate one"s choices.

Just as man cannot survive by any random means, but must discover and practice the principles which his survival requires, so man"s self-interest cannot be determined by blind desires or random whims, but must be discovered and achieved by the guidance of rational principles. This is why the Objectivist ethics is a morality of rational self-interest"or of rational selfishness.

Since selfishness is "concern with one"s own interests," the Objectivist ethics uses that concept in its exact and purest sense. It is not a concept that one can surrender to man"s enemies, nor to the unthinking misconceptions, distortions, prejudices and fears of the ignorant and the irrational. The attack on "selfishness" is an attack on man"s self-esteem; to surrender one, is to surrender the other." - Ayn Rand, The Virtue of Selfishness
LOL, yeah, it's pretty amazing how they think they can "reason" with you. - Sidewalker, speaking of advocates for sexual deviancy.

So, my advice, Liberty, is to go somewhere else. Leave, and never come back. - YYW

And that's what I did. Contact me at http://www.edeb8.com... by the same user name if you have anything you'd like to say.
xXCryptoXx
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3/14/2014 10:54:39 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 11:49:33 AM, TheWarrior wrote:
At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness
This is not that simple. sometimes selfishness is needed for the good and selflessness can be used for evil. Grey areas always exist. Just because something is good now does not mean it will later be good. Sometimes it can become evil.

Morality isn't about the "ultimate good" though. If it was then that would justify evil actions for a greater good. If raping women produced some greater good then not only would it be immoral to not rape women, but it would be encouraged to rape women by utilitarian logic.
Nolite Timere
xXCryptoXx
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3/14/2014 10:56:21 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 10:48:05 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
Ok, here is my real take on this:

At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness

"To redeem both man and morality, it is the concept of "selfishness" that one has to redeem.

The first step is to assert man"s right to a moral existence"that is: to recognize his need of a moral code to guide the course and the fulfillment of his own life . . . .

The reasons why man needs a moral code will tell you that the purpose of morality is to define man"s proper values and interests, that concern with his own interests is the essence of a moral existence, and that man must be the beneficiary of his own moral actions.

Since all values have to be gained and/or kept by men"s actions, any breach between actor and beneficiary necessitates an injustice: the sacrifice of some men to others, of the actors to the nonactors, of the moral to the immoral. Nothing could ever justify such a breach, and no one ever has.

The choice of the beneficiary of moral values is merely a preliminary or introductory issue in the field of morality. It is not a substitute for morality nor a criterion of moral value, as altruism has made it. Neither is it a moral primary: it has to be derived from and validated by the fundamental premises of a moral system.

The Objectivist ethics holds that the actor must always be the beneficiary of his action and that man must act for his own rational self-interest. But his right to do so is derived from his nature as man and from the function of moral values in human life"and, therefore, is applicable only in the context of a rational, objectively demonstrated and validated code of moral principles which define and determine his actual self-interest. It is not a license "to do as he pleases" and it is not applicable to the altruists" image of a "selfish" brute nor to any man motivated by irrational emotions, feelings, urges, wishes or whims.

This is said as a warning against the kind of "Nietzschean egoists" who, in fact, are a product of the altruist morality and represent the other side of the altruist coin: the men who believe that any action, regardless of its nature, is good if it is intended for one"s own benefit. Just as the satisfaction of the irrational desires of others is not a criterion of moral value, neither is the satisfaction of one"s own irrational desires. Morality is not a contest of whims . . . .

A similar type of error is committed by the man who declares that since man must be guided by his own independent judgment, any action he chooses to take is moral if he chooses it. One"s own independent judgment is the means by which one must choose one"s actions, but it is not a moral criterion nor a moral validation: only reference to a demonstrable principle can validate one"s choices.

Just as man cannot survive by any random means, but must discover and practice the principles which his survival requires, so man"s self-interest cannot be determined by blind desires or random whims, but must be discovered and achieved by the guidance of rational principles. This is why the Objectivist ethics is a morality of rational self-interest"or of rational selfishness.

Since selfishness is "concern with one"s own interests," the Objectivist ethics uses that concept in its exact and purest sense. It is not a concept that one can surrender to man"s enemies, nor to the unthinking misconceptions, distortions, prejudices and fears of the ignorant and the irrational. The attack on "selfishness" is an attack on man"s self-esteem; to surrender one, is to surrender the other." - Ayn Rand, The Virtue of Selfishness

tl;dr
Nolite Timere
ADreamOfLiberty
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3/14/2014 10:57:26 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 10:56:21 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
tl;dr

ts;dc
LOL, yeah, it's pretty amazing how they think they can "reason" with you. - Sidewalker, speaking of advocates for sexual deviancy.

So, my advice, Liberty, is to go somewhere else. Leave, and never come back. - YYW

And that's what I did. Contact me at http://www.edeb8.com... by the same user name if you have anything you'd like to say.
Raisor
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3/14/2014 11:06:44 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 10:48:05 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
Ok, here is my real take on this:

At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness

"To redeem both man and morality, it is the concept of "selfishness" that one has to redeem.

The first step is to assert man"s right to a moral existence"that is: to recognize his need of a moral code to guide the course and the fulfillment of his own life . . . .

The reasons why man needs a moral code will tell you that the purpose of morality is to define man"s proper values and interests, that concern with his own interests is the essence of a moral existence, and that man must be the beneficiary of his own moral actions.

Since all values have to be gained and/or kept by men"s actions, any breach between actor and beneficiary necessitates an injustice: the sacrifice of some men to others, of the actors to the nonactors, of the moral to the immoral. Nothing could ever justify such a breach, and no one ever has.

The choice of the beneficiary of moral values is merely a preliminary or introductory issue in the field of morality. It is not a substitute for morality nor a criterion of moral value, as altruism has made it. Neither is it a moral primary: it has to be derived from and validated by the fundamental premises of a moral system.

The Objectivist ethics holds that the actor must always be the beneficiary of his action and that man must act for his own rational self-interest. But his right to do so is derived from his nature as man and from the function of moral values in human life"and, therefore, is applicable only in the context of a rational, objectively demonstrated and validated code of moral principles which define and determine his actual self-interest. It is not a license "to do as he pleases" and it is not applicable to the altruists" image of a "selfish" brute nor to any man motivated by irrational emotions, feelings, urges, wishes or whims.

This is said as a warning against the kind of "Nietzschean egoists" who, in fact, are a product of the altruist morality and represent the other side of the altruist coin: the men who believe that any action, regardless of its nature, is good if it is intended for one"s own benefit. Just as the satisfaction of the irrational desires of others is not a criterion of moral value, neither is the satisfaction of one"s own irrational desires. Morality is not a contest of whims . . . .

A similar type of error is committed by the man who declares that since man must be guided by his own independent judgment, any action he chooses to take is moral if he chooses it. One"s own independent judgment is the means by which one must choose one"s actions, but it is not a moral criterion nor a moral validation: only reference to a demonstrable principle can validate one"s choices.

Just as man cannot survive by any random means, but must discover and practice the principles which his survival requires, so man"s self-interest cannot be determined by blind desires or random whims, but must be discovered and achieved by the guidance of rational principles. This is why the Objectivist ethics is a morality of rational self-interest"or of rational selfishness.

Since selfishness is "concern with one"s own interests," the Objectivist ethics uses that concept in its exact and purest sense. It is not a concept that one can surrender to man"s enemies, nor to the unthinking misconceptions, distortions, prejudices and fears of the ignorant and the irrational. The attack on "selfishness" is an attack on man"s self-esteem; to surrender one, is to surrender the other." - Ayn Rand, The Virtue of Selfishness

I must only act in my own self interest, except in cases where it somehow violates "rational" human nature, which probably boils down to the sort of "altruistic" ethics Ayn rand thinks she is criticizing or some sort of neo Aristotelian conception of a good life that doesn't have nothing to do with selfishness.

Ayn Rand just adds very little to the philosophical conversation...
ADreamOfLiberty
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3/15/2014 12:11:57 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 11:06:44 PM, Raisor wrote:

I must only act in my own self interest, except in cases where it somehow violates "rational" human nature

That is a strawman. You must act in your own self interest and you have incorrectly identified that self-interest when it violates rational human nature.
LOL, yeah, it's pretty amazing how they think they can "reason" with you. - Sidewalker, speaking of advocates for sexual deviancy.

So, my advice, Liberty, is to go somewhere else. Leave, and never come back. - YYW

And that's what I did. Contact me at http://www.edeb8.com... by the same user name if you have anything you'd like to say.
R0b1Billion
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3/15/2014 12:21:56 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/14/2014 10:48:05 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
Ok, here is my real take on this:

At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness

This made more sense when I read it in its entirety:
http://aynrandlexicon.com...

"To redeem both man and morality, it is the concept of "selfishness" that one has to redeem.

Rand makes the semantic distinction between colloquial selfishness, which is generally negative, and literal selfishness, which would include things that can't be viewed as immoral (e.g., eating food). I agree we should have two terms to describe these two different concepts. Moral terminology is poorly defined and that makes discussing morality frustrating unless everybody agrees on the vocabulary.

The Objectivist ethics holds that the actor must always be the beneficiary of his action and that man must act for his own rational self-interest.

I prefer the term "natural" to "rational" but it is the same concept. Plato attempted to distinguish between natural and artificial needs in the Republic:

"
Let us then consider, first of all, what will be their way of life, now that we have thus established them. Will they not produce corn, and wine, and clothes, and shoes, and build houses for themselves? And when they are housed, they will work, in summer, commonly, stripped and barefoot, but in winter substantially clothed and shod. They will feed on barley-meal and flour of wheat, baking and kneading them, making noble cakes and loaves; these they will serve up on a mat of reeds or on clean leaves, themselves reclining the while upon beds strewn with yew or myrtle. And they and their children will feast, drinking of the wine which they have made, wearing garlands on their heads, and hymning the praises of the gods, in happy converse with one another. And they will take care that their families do not exceed their means; having an eye to poverty or war.

But, said Glaucon, interposing, you have not given them a relish to their meal.

True, I replied, I had forgotten; of course they must have a relish-salt, and olives, and cheese, and they will boil roots and herbs such as country people prepare; for a dessert we shall give them figs, and peas, and beans; and they will roast myrtle-berries and acorns at the fire, drinking in moderation. And with such a diet they may be expected to live in peace and health to a good old age, and bequeath a similar life to their children after them.

Yes, Socrates, he said, and if you were providing for a city of pigs, how else would you feed the beasts?

But what would you have, Glaucon? I replied.
Why, he said, you should give them the ordinary conveniences of life. People who are to be comfortable are accustomed to lie on sofas, and dine off tables, and they should have sauces and sweets in the modern style.

Yes, I said, now I understand: the question which you would have me consider is, not only how a State, but how a luxurious State is created. In my opinion the true and healthy constitution of the State is the one which I have described. But if you wish also to see a State at fever heat, I have no objection. For I suspect that many will not be satisfied with the simpler way of way They will be for adding sofas, and tables, and other furniture; also dainties, and perfumes, and incense, and courtesans, and cakes, all these not of one sort only, but in every variety; we must go beyond the necessaries of which I was at first speaking, such as houses, and clothes, and shoes: the arts of the painter and the embroiderer will have to be set in motion, and gold and ivory and all sorts of materials must be procured.

True, he said.
Then we must enlarge our borders; for the original healthy State is no longer sufficient. Now will the city have to fill and swell with a multitude of callings which are not required by any natural want; such as the whole tribe of hunters and actors, of whom one large class have to do with forms and colours; another will be the votaries of music --poets and their attendant train of rhapsodists, players, dancers, contractors; also makers of divers kinds of articles, including women's dresses. And we shall want more servants. Will not tutors be also in request, and nurses wet and dry, tirewomen and barbers, as well as confectioners and cooks; and swineherds, too, who were not needed and therefore had no place in the former edition of our State, but are needed now? They must not be forgotten: and there will be animals of many other kinds, if people eat them.

Certainly.
And living in this way we shall have much greater need of physicians than before?

Much greater.
And the country which was enough to support the original inhabitants will be too small now, and not enough?

Quite true.
Then a slice of our neighbours' land will be wanted by us for pasture and tillage, and they will want a slice of ours, if, like ourselves, they exceed the limit of necessity, and give themselves up to the unlimited accumulation of wealth?

That, Socrates, will be inevitable.
And so we shall go to war, Glaucon. Shall we not?
Most certainly, he replied.

And our State must once more enlarge; and this time the will be nothing short of a whole army, which will have to go out and fight with the invaders for all that we have, as well as for the things and persons whom we were describing above.

"

Socrates starts off with natural wants and desires, and Glaucon points out that we will want more than this - we will want to delve into the artificial. We want factories, full of servants within them, to make us our modern indulgences - the bitter irony is that we end up being the servants and we pay for these indulgences with environmental damage, psychological damage, and damage to our health. Plato knew 2500 years ago that indulgences of these sorts would produce a "much greater need of physicians than before." Do you think Plato would need to study statistics regarding obesity, back injuries (from sitting), ADHD, Diabetes, Celiacs, and other modern diseases that are resulting from our increasing ability to indulge ourselves? It doesn't take scientific studies to show smoking cigarettes is bad to somebody like Plato who would understand the moral give-and-take of such an indulgent behavior. Even our environment needs physicians of sorts, because of all the damage we are doing to it with the production of these things.

So to tie Rand and Plato together, we have rational desires which are things we naturally need; things that can be produced without adverse effect. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that a McDonald's hamburger produces more distutility than utility, and we need to identify, more holistically, what items we rationally need and what items we irrationally want. The capitalistic notion that we produce whatever somebody can make a profit off of is troubling, given the fact that that necessarily includes one person manipulating another into giving in to the temptation of indulgence - which is hard enough to do without the outside pressure.

Finally, as Plato mentions at the end, these indulgences of ours "swell" the state and create international conflict. Our moral decision to indulge here and now ultimately sets in motion the gears of war, while at the same time diminishing our health and spirit. The roots of morality penetrate into every aspect of humanity.
Beliefs in a nutshell:
- The Ends never justify the Means.
- Objectivity is secondary to subjectivity.
- The War on Drugs is the worst policy in the U.S.
- Most people worship technology as a religion.
- Computers will never become sentient.
Raisor
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3/15/2014 8:39:31 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/15/2014 12:11:57 AM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
At 3/14/2014 11:06:44 PM, Raisor wrote:

I must only act in my own self interest, except in cases where it somehow violates "rational" human nature

That is a strawman. You must act in your own self interest and you have incorrectly identified that self-interest when it violates rational human nature.

This is just redefining self interest to meet classic conceptions of ethical behavior.

Defining self interest this way is just a dodge of the hard cases where I will clearly benefit from unethical actions. If I can lie and 100% get away with it, how is doing so notin my self interest? E.g. If I know I can game a prisoners dilemma.
ADreamOfLiberty
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3/15/2014 8:42:12 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/15/2014 8:39:31 AM, Raisor wrote:
At 3/15/2014 12:11:57 AM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
At 3/14/2014 11:06:44 PM, Raisor wrote:

I must only act in my own self interest, except in cases where it somehow violates "rational" human nature

That is a strawman. You must act in your own self interest and you have incorrectly identified that self-interest when it violates rational human nature.

This is just redefining self interest to meet classic conceptions of ethical behavior.

It most certainly is not since classical conceptions of ethical behavior are altruism.

Defining self interest this way is just a dodge of the hard cases where I will clearly benefit from unethical actions. If I can lie and 100% get away with it, how is doing so notin my self interest? E.g. If I know I can game a prisoners dilemma.

For a man's self-esteem he must live by his own effort. A candy cane is not a benefit if he had to steal it from a baby because life is not mere survival.
LOL, yeah, it's pretty amazing how they think they can "reason" with you. - Sidewalker, speaking of advocates for sexual deviancy.

So, my advice, Liberty, is to go somewhere else. Leave, and never come back. - YYW

And that's what I did. Contact me at http://www.edeb8.com... by the same user name if you have anything you'd like to say.
Raisor
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3/15/2014 9:19:00 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/15/2014 8:42:12 AM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
At 3/15/2014 8:39:31 AM, Raisor wrote:
At 3/15/2014 12:11:57 AM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
At 3/14/2014 11:06:44 PM, Raisor wrote:

I must only act in my own self interest, except in cases where it somehow violates "rational" human nature

That is a strawman. You must act in your own self interest and you have incorrectly identified that self-interest when it violates rational human nature.

This is just redefining self interest to meet classic conceptions of ethical behavior.

It most certainly is not since classical conceptions of ethical behavior are altruism.

Defining self interest this way is just a dodge of the hard cases where I will clearly benefit from unethical actions. If I can lie and 100% get away with it, how is doing so notin my self interest? E.g. If I know I can game a prisoners dilemma.

For a man's self-esteem he must live by his own effort. A candy cane is not a benefit if he had to steal it from a baby because life is not mere survival.

Ayn rands idea of altruism is a bastardized interpretation of Kant and Christian morality.

A Christian could say "altruism is self interest because gods law is the path to spiritual fulfillment" - functionally the same argument you are making except you use the mechanism of self esteem to get to traits like honesty and (probably) magnanimity.

A utilitarian could say "you shouldn't act dishonestly because your mental well being (self esteem) depends on honest action."

Eudaimonistic virtue ethics doesn't equate altruism to the ethical, and really Ayn rand almost outright says her rite ethics are tweaked version of Aristotle.

To get to a meaningful ethical system you have to build in very round about conception of "selfishness" until it starts to look identical to the classical concept of "the good life." not to mention selfishness just seems like an oblique way to get at the concept she is trying to get at, whereas utilitarianism and virtue ethics go there more directly.

As a result rand turns out to be not very interesting, she doesn't add much to the historical conversation of philosophy.
ADreamOfLiberty
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3/17/2014 4:01:26 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/15/2014 12:21:56 AM, R0b1Billion wrote:
At 3/14/2014 10:48:05 PM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
Ok, here is my real take on this:

At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness

This made more sense when I read it in its entirety:
http://aynrandlexicon.com...

That's a good site and where I copy pasted from, but it is just referencing books. The 'entirety' is not the contents of that page but the book "The Virtue of Selfishness."

The Objectivist ethics holds that the actor must always be the beneficiary of his action and that man must act for his own rational self-interest.

I prefer the term "natural" to "rational" but it is the same concept. Plato attempted to distinguish between natural and artificial needs in the Republic:

"
Let us then consider, first of all, what will be their way of life, now that we have thus established them. Will they not produce corn, and wine, and clothes, and shoes, and build houses for themselves? And when they are housed, they will work, in summer, commonly, stripped and barefoot, but in winter substantially clothed and shod. They will feed on barley-meal and flour of wheat, baking and kneading them, making noble cakes and loaves; these they will serve up on a mat of reeds or on clean leaves, themselves reclining the while upon beds strewn with yew or myrtle. And they and their children will feast, drinking of the wine which they have made, wearing garlands on their heads, and hymning the praises of the gods, in happy converse with one another. And they will take care that their families do not exceed their means; having an eye to poverty or war.

But, said Glaucon, interposing, you have not given them a relish to their meal.

True, I replied, I had forgotten; of course they must have a relish-salt, and olives, and cheese, and they will boil roots and herbs such as country people prepare; for a dessert we shall give them figs, and peas, and beans; and they will roast myrtle-berries and acorns at the fire, drinking in moderation. And with such a diet they may be expected to live in peace and health to a good old age, and bequeath a similar life to their children after them.

Yes, Socrates, he said, and if you were providing for a city of pigs, how else would you feed the beasts?

But what would you have, Glaucon? I replied.
Why, he said, you should give them the ordinary conveniences of life. People who are to be comfortable are accustomed to lie on sofas, and dine off tables, and they should have sauces and sweets in the modern style.

Yes, I said, now I understand: the question which you would have me consider is, not only how a State, but how a luxurious State is created. In my opinion the true and healthy constitution of the State is the one which I have described. But if you wish also to see a State at fever heat, I have no objection. For I suspect that many will not be satisfied with the simpler way of way They will be for adding sofas, and tables, and other furniture; also dainties, and perfumes, and incense, and courtesans, and cakes, all these not of one sort only, but in every variety; we must go beyond the necessaries of which I was at first speaking, such as houses, and clothes, and shoes: the arts of the painter and the embroiderer will have to be set in motion, and gold and ivory and all sorts of materials must be procured.

True, he said.
Then we must enlarge our borders; for the original healthy State is no longer sufficient. Now will the city have to fill and swell with a multitude of callings which are not required by any natural want; such as the whole tribe of hunters and actors, of whom one large class have to do with forms and colours; another will be the votaries of music --poets and their attendant train of rhapsodists, players, dancers, contractors; also makers of divers kinds of articles, including women's dresses. And we shall want more servants. Will not tutors be also in request, and nurses wet and dry, tirewomen and barbers, as well as confectioners and cooks; and swineherds, too, who were not needed and therefore had no place in the former edition of our State, but are needed now? They must not be forgotten: and there will be animals of many other kinds, if people eat them.

Certainly.
And living in this way we shall have much greater need of physicians than before?

Much greater.
And the country which was enough to support the original inhabitants will be too small now, and not enough?

Quite true.
Then a slice of our neighbours' land will be wanted by us for pasture and tillage, and they will want a slice of ours, if, like ourselves, they exceed the limit of necessity, and give themselves up to the unlimited accumulation of wealth?

That, Socrates, will be inevitable.
And so we shall go to war, Glaucon. Shall we not?
Most certainly, he replied.

And our State must once more enlarge; and this time the will be nothing short of a whole army, which will have to go out and fight with the invaders for all that we have, as well as for the things and persons whom we were describing above.

"

Socrates starts off with natural wants and desires, and Glaucon points out that we will want more than this - we will want to delve into the artificial. We want factories, full of servants within them, to make us our modern indulgences - the bitter irony is that we end up being the servants and we pay for these indulgences with environmental damage, psychological damage, and damage to our health. Plato knew 2500 years ago that indulgences of these sorts would produce a "much greater need of physicians than before." Do you think Plato would need to study statistics regarding obesity, back injuries (from sitting), ADHD, Diabetes, Celiacs, and other modern diseases that are resulting from our increasing ability to indulge ourselves? It doesn't take scientific studies to show smoking cigarettes is bad to somebody like Plato who would understand the moral give-and-take of such an indulgent behavior. Even our environment needs physicians of sorts, because of all the damage we are doing to it with the production of these things.

So to tie Rand and Plato together, we have rational desires which are things we naturally need; things that can be produced without adverse effect. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that a McDonald's hamburger produces more distutility than utility, and we need to identify, more holistically, what items we rationally need and what items we irrationally want. The capitalistic notion that we produce whatever somebody can make a profit off of is troubling, given the fact that that necessarily includes one person manipulating another into giving in to the temptation of indulgence - which is hard enough to do without the outside pressure.

Finally, as Plato mentions at the end, these indulgences of ours "swell" the state and create international conflict. Our moral decision to indulge here and now ultimately sets in motion the gears of war, while at the same time diminishing our health and spirit. The roots of morality penetrate into every aspect of humanity.

I find this absurd. What we 'really need' we could get in any zoo that cares for great apes and we only need it by setting the function of our bodies as the goal. What we want and what we need are not two eternally separate things. There is no connection between a cheeseburger and war, nor capitalist production and the state.
LOL, yeah, it's pretty amazing how they think they can "reason" with you. - Sidewalker, speaking of advocates for sexual deviancy.

So, my advice, Liberty, is to go somewhere else. Leave, and never come back. - YYW

And that's what I did. Contact me at http://www.edeb8.com... by the same user name if you have anything you'd like to say.
AnDoctuir
Posts: 11,060
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3/17/2014 4:28:40 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/13/2014 2:37:39 PM, phantom wrote:
At 3/13/2014 2:11:41 PM, xXCryptoXx wrote:
Good = Selflessness

Evil = Selfishness

Wow, as a Nietzsche admirer I disagree with this so much.

Nietzsche lost himself in some silly search for absolute truth, then tried to commit suicide by throwing himself in front of a horse.
R0b1Billion
Posts: 3,732
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3/18/2014 5:30:12 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/17/2014 4:01:26 AM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:

Finally, as Plato mentions at the end, these indulgences of ours "swell" the state and create international conflict. Our moral decision to indulge here and now ultimately sets in motion the gears of war, while at the same time diminishing our health and spirit. The roots of morality penetrate into every aspect of humanity.

I find this absurd. What we 'really need' we could get in any zoo that cares for great apes and we only need it by setting the function of our bodies as the goal.

That's not true at all! What apes need is not provided by a zoo. If you think animals in the zoo have everything they need because of a small area to pace back and forth and some food and water, then you are not appreciating the entirety of what those animals really are. Like humans, animals need freedom and the ability to socialize. If you don't understand that then I feel bad for your pets :(

Furthermore, humans are more complex than lower animals and "need" much more. Going beyond freedom and socialization, we need the ability to self-actualize our talents and abilities. One could write a book on the psychological/cultural/social/spiritual needs of humans, and your attempt to minimize that is questionable.

What we want and what we need are not two eternally separate things.

I like that song by the Rolling Stones: "you can't always get what you want, but if you try sometime, you just might find - you get what you need." I thought, originally, that the wisdom in this statement was that you want all sorts of things - luxuries - that you can't have, but you always end up getting what you need to merely survive. I have since abandoned that interpretation. I now believe that what we need includes what is actually best for us, and wants are simply indulgences. While a nice car would be a want, the ability to be where you are needed is a need. It's impossible to rule out overlap, but that doesn't mean that we have natural needs and artificial desires. Part of growing up is knowing the difference!

There is no connection between a cheeseburger and war

I disagree. As consumers, our first impression of a cheeseburger is that it is made at a fast food joint. Our products are made at Wal-Mart by little yellow smileys. McDonald's mows down countless acres of rainforest and other sensitive areas to raise cattle to make that hamburger. The equipment they use utilizes underpaid labor in China, by people who will never be able to afford the actual products they make. The cheese is made from cows, raised on farms that pollute the waterways near them with runoff. Being in Wisconsin, my local waterway (Baird Creek) has too much nitrogen and not enough oxygen in it because of runoff from local farms that make the cheese for your burger (figuratively speaking, of course). Humans are voraciously consumptive and wasteful, on top of being completely ignorant as to the effects of that consumption. The economic pressure to produce things far away from where they are consumed is probably due to us wanting to minimize this realization ;)

nor capitalist production and the state.

So you and I are not part of the state?
Beliefs in a nutshell:
- The Ends never justify the Means.
- Objectivity is secondary to subjectivity.
- The War on Drugs is the worst policy in the U.S.
- Most people worship technology as a religion.
- Computers will never become sentient.
ADreamOfLiberty
Posts: 1,570
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3/18/2014 6:40:02 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/18/2014 5:30:12 PM, R0b1Billion wrote:
At 3/17/2014 4:01:26 AM, ADreamOfLiberty wrote:
Finally, as Plato mentions at the end, these indulgences of ours "swell" the state and create international conflict. Our moral decision to indulge here and now ultimately sets in motion the gears of war, while at the same time diminishing our health and spirit. The roots of morality penetrate into every aspect of humanity.

I find this absurd. What we 'really need' we could get in any zoo that cares for great apes and we only need it by setting the function of our bodies as the goal.

That's not true at all! What apes need is not provided by a zoo. If you think animals in the zoo have everything they need because of a small area to pace back and forth and some food and water, then you are not appreciating the entirety of what those animals really are.

I think they have what they need since they do not die. If you go beyond that simple operation of the body there is no where else to draw the line. Want and need blend together just as I pointed out.

Like humans, animals need freedom and the ability to socialize. If you don't understand that then I feel bad for your pets :(

I know they need that to be happy. To be happy we need at least some of what we want. You have no cause to feel bad for my 'pets'.

Furthermore, humans are more complex than lower animals and "need" much more. Going beyond freedom and socialization, we need the ability to self-actualize our talents and abilities. One could write a book on the psychological/cultural/social/spiritual needs of humans, and your attempt to minimize that is questionable.

I was attempting the ask the question "need for what?"

What we want and what we need are not two eternally separate things.

I like that song by the Rolling Stones: "you can't always get what you want, but if you try sometime, you just might find - you get what you need." I thought, originally, that the wisdom in this statement was that you want all sorts of things - luxuries - that you can't have, but you always end up getting what you need to merely survive. I have since abandoned that interpretation. I now believe that what we need includes what is actually best for us, and wants are simply indulgences. While a nice car would be a want, the ability to be where you are needed is a need. It's impossible to rule out overlap, but that doesn't mean that we have natural needs and artificial desires. Part of growing up is knowing the difference!

What do you think of this:

"In psychological terms, the issue of man"s survival does not confront his consciousness as an issue of "life or death," but as an issue of "happiness or suffering." Happiness is the successful state of life, suffering is the warning signal of failure, of death. Just as the pleasure-pain mechanism of man"s body is an automatic indicator of his body"s welfare or injury, a barometer of its basic alternative, life or death"so the emotional mechanism of man"s consciousness is geared to perform the same function, as a barometer that registers the same alternative by means of two basic emotions: joy or suffering."

There is no connection between a cheeseburger and war

I disagree. As consumers, our first impression of a cheeseburger is that it is made at a fast food joint. Our products are made at Wal-Mart by little yellow smileys. McDonald's mows down countless acres of rainforest and other sensitive areas to raise cattle to make that hamburger. The equipment they use utilizes underpaid labor in China, by people who will never be able to afford the actual products they make. The cheese is made from cows, raised on farms that pollute the waterways near them with runoff. Being in Wisconsin, my local waterway (Baird Creek) has too much nitrogen and not enough oxygen in it because of runoff from local farms that make the cheese for your burger (figuratively speaking, of course). Humans are voraciously consumptive and wasteful, on top of being completely ignorant as to the effects of that consumption. The economic pressure to produce things far away from where they are consumed is probably due to us wanting to minimize this realization ;)

I'm pretty sure it's got more to do with the fact that land is cheap farther away from population center and the labor supply in third world countries is very high.

What is the relation between nitrates and dissolved oxygen? I was under the impression diatomic oxygen is rather nonreactive.

Anyway I retract what I said. There are connections in the real world (ditto for the next statement). What I meant was there is no connection in the world of ideas. There is nothing about production and capitalism that implies violence or destroying natural resources.

nor capitalist production and the state.

So you and I are not part of the state?

Not by choice :p
LOL, yeah, it's pretty amazing how they think they can "reason" with you. - Sidewalker, speaking of advocates for sexual deviancy.

So, my advice, Liberty, is to go somewhere else. Leave, and never come back. - YYW

And that's what I did. Contact me at http://www.edeb8.com... by the same user name if you have anything you'd like to say.
Idealist
Posts: 2,520
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3/18/2014 10:51:48 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/13/2014 12:35:33 PM, R0b1Billion wrote:
Good and evil exist only as attributes of people. It is not defined to speak about morality without it being related to the actions of a person.

Evil arises out of the mind's inability to single out the inherent bias that all intelligent beings possess. We naturally think of ourselves first, and that natural impetus is combined with our creative desires. The artificial is our creation to deliver on these desires, and while most all of our progress is arguably of positive value to society, it is not arguable that it is paved with the selfish desires of those who seek only to secure their own interests.

I don't believe that it's true that everyone naturally thinks of themselves first. In fact, some people exhibit almost chronic empathy. I know a person like that. He will not take the last glass of milk, the last piece of bread, or do anything that makes him feel like he is denying the same opportunity to someone else. There are exceptions, of course. I don't think he'd share his girlfriend, and he has limits to his patience, but it's amazing how he always seems to put everyone else first. If he doesn't then he feels overrun with guilt. It seems to me that we all tend to automatically judge others first on what our own characteristics are. If we are consummate liars then we expect others to lie, if we are very honest we expect others to be, etc., at least until we have reason to feel differently about them.

Our desire to secure our interests creates a foundation for our social beliefs. What's "good" for society, in our eyes, is what is best for ourselves, with perhaps some but certainly less consideration for others' welfare.

George Price was a mathematician who became famous for developing a theorem which showed that altruism was an evolved and selfish trait. The only problem was that after he published his theorem he found himself surrounded by instances of what he could only interpret as true altruism. He was so affected that he accepted religion, gave away all he had and dedicated his life to helping others. He even tried to prove his own theorem wrong, with controversial success. In the end he managed to balance his life, but remained forever charitable and giving. There are people who will run into a burning house without a thought just because the hear the whine of a dog, let alone the scream of a person. That is not advantageous to them, their families, or even their species. Soldiers who have been to war almost always say that when it comes down to the worst fighting, the only thing that keeps them going is their concern over the welfare of the men beside them. Everyone has a right to their own opinion, of course, and I'm sure we each have one that's probably unique. But I will always believe that people are capable of thinking outward first, and valuing the lives and welfare of others before their own.

The state of being good can be achieved only by identifying and eliminated the impetus of bias within us. One easy test of goodness is to apply Kant's Categorical Imperative: act in a way that, if repeated by anybody or everybody else, would not be unjust to the privileges of others.