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Some Thoughts on Nihilism

charleslb
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11/27/2010 4:12:08 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Why the Nihilist Stance is Intellectually Lame
Part 1

Let's begin by defining my terms, although technically a relativist, a radical skeptic, and a nihilist are not all the same animal they have certain family resemblances and I'll give an umbrella definition that they can all stand under. A relativist/radical skeptic/nihilist is someone who takes the stance that our sense of meaning and values are just something that we make up, we can never know or prove for a fact that they're objectively valid.

What's more, according to this "postmodern" stance, given the artificial and unverifiable nature of our sense of meaning and values, we shouldn't go about thinking and acting as though our feelings and reasonings about life are true and right, and that those who disagree with us are adherents of an objectively false and wrong perspective on life. We should be non-judgmental about other people's philosophies because when it comes to value judgments, ethical issues, and ultimate metaphysical questions about the nature of our existence no one really has a handle on the "truth", there's either no such truth to get a handle on, or our perspective-bound minds are incapable of objectively coming to grips with it.

According to this stance the only difference between the relativist/nihilist and the adherents of other philosophies is that the relativist/nihilist is conscious of how he/she subjectively invents meaning ex nihilo, and the absolutist adherents of other philosophies delude themselves that their sense of meaning and morality comes from some insight into a higher, mind-independent truth. Supposedly we're all playing the same game, but in the manner of a lucid dreamer the relativist/nihilist realizes that he's just playing an intellectual game and therefore doesn't get too pretentious and intolerant like the dogmatists of other doctrines.

At any rate, according to the relativist/nihilist stance the only real, i.e., verifiable and important grounds upon which to evaluate one's sense of meaning and values is whether or not they conduce to and enhance the well-being and quality of life of the person holding to them. If they do, if they pass this essentially pragmatic test, then they can be said to be valid and solid, if not, well, then you should seriously revaluate your values.

This all raises two critical questions, does such a what-the-heck-we're-all-just-making-it-up-so-make-up-morals-that-serve-you-well stance lead to the blasé tolerance not just of other creeds but of cruelty, and does it promote authentic tolerance or only an indifference that passes for tolerance.

Okay then, if I think that there are no true or false, ultimately right or wrong viewpoints on life and ethics, and that the pragmatic criteria "Does it serve my interests and enhance my experience of life" is the only standard by which to pass judgment on a philosophy, this would seem to mean that I should not take a very staunch "moral" stance against any supposed "evil" in the world. And I'm afraid that if a relativist/nihilist wishes to be consistent he/she must own up to this, he can deny that it's a shortcoming of his stance, but he can't deny that it's an inescapable implication.

Let's look at an example. In the era of slavery in the US slavery supporters and slaveholders had a sense of life's meaning and values that permitted them to practice the enslavement of other human beings. According to their sense of life's meaning and values this was not at all unnatural or evil. And it certainly enhanced the material quality of life of the plantation owner, he didn't have to do his own backbreaking labor to make a living from the land, and with enough slave labor he could do considerably more than just make a living, he could grow rich and maintain a very enjoyable lifestyle. As far as the slaveholder was concerned there was no real downside to his beliefs vis-à-vis slavery.

Does this mean that slaveholders were not wrong and wicked? That their sense of ethics was not skewed in favor of evil? If reality can't be ethically compartmentalized in categories of good and evil, if pragmatically speaking slavery was a win-win proposition for slave owners (until the Civil War of course), well then, according to the relativist/nihilist way of thinking yes indeed, we should not condemn slavery as an "evil institution", and we certainly shouldn't view those who kept slaves as villains.

Likewise, the abolitionists who made a big stink about the evils of slavery and doing away with it, well, they were just uptight absolutists who wanted to force their values on others, they were the intolerant troublemakers, hmm? This is the morally cockeyed perspective that relativism/nihilism can and does lead to.

Of course today most people realize and take for granted that the abolitionists had right and moral truth on their side, that slavery was objectively and truly evil and something to be opposed, and that those who actively opposed it were genuinely and ethically enlightened. But a relativist/nihilist who desires to be perfectly consistent is in the lame position of having to condone the cruelty of slavery and the beliefs that permitted it, the relativist/nihilist must take a dissenting position from the verdict of history and assert that slavery wasn't inherently evil, it was just a product of the South's made-up and successfully self-serving ethos.

And here we have the great failing of relativism/nihilism, it cold-bloodedly countenances man's most heinous inhumanity toward his fellow man. Sure, it might also grope for and find a rationalization for opposing all the hate and harm in the world, but it never really recognizes or acknowledges any inborn-in-the-nature-of-reality reasons why evils such as slavery are wrong.

The abolitionist was right, objectively, unequivocally, and I dare say absolutely, and the slaveholder was wrong and guilty of a real and egregious evil. This is not just a matter of subjective opinion, it's the case, cut and dried. The shameful problem for the relativist/nihilist is that he can't say this, he has to go into his/her sophistical spiel about everything just being a matter of perspective, and how from the ethical standpoint of the slaveholder he wasn't doing anything reprehensible, blah, blah, blah.

An extreme example like slavery drives home to us that there is such a thing as truth, as objective ethics, as the need to make strong-to-the-point-of-absolute judgments about right & wrong. There are plenty of more contemporary examples too. To name just one, there's the modern form of slavery called prostitution. Many prostitutes are not free agents at all, they're the slave of a pimp. According to the pimp's subjective sense of meaning and values he's doing nothing despicable and he's certainly materially enhancing his life by practicing the sexual exploitation of minors (mostly). Yep, from his own perspective a pimp is an entrepreneur not a scumbag. Does this mean that we should be neutral about the way madams, procurers, and other white slavers degrade young girls and women? According to relativists and nihilists it does, unless they intellectually weasel out of the ethical foibles of their philosophy.

So, relativism/nihilism doesn't provide a solid springboard for our sense of right & wrong to launch itself against the evils in the world, it doesn't explain or advocate altruism, kindness, compassion, social justice, honesty, etc. It can't even discern and admit a moral truth staring it squarely in the face and glaring at it, i.e., the immorality of slavery.

See the conclusion directly below
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
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11/27/2010 4:13:03 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Why the Nihilist Stance is Intellectually Lame
Part 2 (Conclusion)

Supposedly a society of enlightened relativists and nihilists, functioning out of a rational sense of self-interest would be a place in which people worked together to mutually enhance their lives simply because that's the smartly pragmatic thing to do, supposedly therefore such a society wouldn't be such a bad place to live. But if we look at real-world examples of how people who aren't under the influence of any ethics, of anything but self-interest often behave, the criminal underworld for example, the kind of society such people tend to evolve is anything but inviting. In short, relativism/nihilism is morally and socially disastrous, and by its own standards therefore an invalid worldview.

Now then, what about the idea that at least relativist and nihilists, with their nonjudgmentalness, would at least create a more tolerant society? Well, this depends on how you define tolerance. If you equate tolerance with indifference then a society with a relativist/nihilist ethos would probably be a good deal more tolerant. Of course remember that it would also be tolerant of such things as pimps exploiting and abusing teenage girls, but yes it would be highly tolerant of different opinions and lifestyles.

That's if tolerance and indifference were the same thing, they're not. Indifference is indifference, it's apathetically refraining from recognizing differences, it's not caring enough to disagree, argue, oppose, impose, persecute, etc. Tolerance, on the other hand, is caring about what your fellow human beings think, feel, and do, but mustering the respect for their human rights and dignity to refrain from insulting, interfering, attacking, or dominating them.

The relativist/nihilist view that all our opinions, mores, and norms are merely subjective and only to be judged on pragmatic grounds can leave one with an apathetic attitude about other philosophies, religions, values, cultures, social systems, etc. and this apathetic attitude can lead to more pluralism, but not to real-deal tolerance in the hearts and minds of people. Relativist/nihilists simply never have to develop the self-insight, the self-control, the character, the sensitivity that's part and parcel of true, inner tolerance. Instead they just write off every philosophy or value system as equally subjective and irrelevant. If a particular religion or ideology isn't getting in their face they couldn't care less, they don't care enough to ever be challenged to find the mental and emotional wherewithal within to be honestly tolerant. Their philosophy actually precludes them from being genuinely, profoundly, positively, and beautifully tolerant!

So, since the philosophical nonchalance promoted by relativism/nihilism eliminates the potential for dogmatism, bigotry, fanaticism, etc. it would seem to be a good thing, but it also removes the need and opportunity to develop those internal qualities that go into actual tolerance. In this way it would diminish and impoverish us, and prevent the evolution of a more human-rights-respecting, magnanimous, gentle, and just society.

To sum up here, relativism/nihilism promotes the acceptance of the wrongs in the world while at the same time preventing the development of true tolerance for people's differences. Relativism/nihilism is not an intellectually or ethically supportable stance.

PS, As for the relativist/nihilist position that truth is either nonexistent or unknowable, truth exists and is known, to one degree or another, from one angle or another, by many. It's merely that truth, of the axiological, ethical, and spiritual variety, is not "scientifically" (in the materialistic sense) provable, certainly not to everyone's satisfaction, and especially not to the satisfaction of relativists/nihilists who are ideologically disinclined to be satisfied with any proofs for anything (I'm referring to the most consistent and extreme relativists/nihilists of course).

What's up with this ideological disinclination to accept proofs, well, if you're of the logical positivist persuasion this of course makes anything asserted to be an ultimate truth or value "nonsense". Why do I drag in logical positivism here, because the logical positivist tenet that a proposition must be analytically airtight or empirically demonstrable, otherwise it's beneath intellectual contempt, is definitely an element in modern relativism/nihilism, and it will never be overcome when dealing with those who willfully choose to hew to it, even though it's quite intellectually passé (if you look up logical positivism or logical empiricism in an encyclopedia you'll find that it's spoken of in the past tense, one author refers to it as an "obsolete philosophic paradigm of science").

If you're a really over-the-top logically positivistic relativist/nihilist, if you're a pronounced Pyrrhonistic skeptic, well, then nothing, not even scientific "proof" will or should satisfy you. As one published intellectual accused of being a radical skeptic has written, "scientific theories, no matter how formal …are guesses or conjectures" (Tomi Gomory, also the author quoted above). Yep, not even science really gives us verities that skeptics can feel good about getting invested in. They should come clean about this and stop trying to hide behind the pretense of being scientific, in their view even the "facts" and theories of science deserve not much more respect than some of my views. Therefore I hardly take their demands for proof seriously, nothing will appease their standards of proof, not even science. The way they set the bar no one will ever get over it.

Of course their own skepticism/nihilism doesn't get over it either, if applied to itself it refutes itself just as it does everything else. Yes, if every viewpoint is just conjecture and to be kicked to the curb as such, then nihilism is itself just conjecture and should be given a good swift kick too! Radical skepticism and nihilism gets a big fat F- on the self-reference test! Perhaps when nihilists can defend their self-refuting worldview I'll feel the pressure to try to do the impossible and prove an intangible truth to a nihilist!
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
Cerebral_Narcissist
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11/27/2010 4:20:46 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Seriously I am bored of this sh1t.
This is the troll line.
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I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
Reasoning
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11/27/2010 4:21:49 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 4:13:03 PM, charleslb wrote:
In short, relativism/nihilism is morally and socially disastrous, and by its own standards therefore an invalid worldview.

And how precisely does this follow? Let's grant, for the sake of argument, that if everyone became a Stirnerite egoist that the world would quickly devolve into chaos. How does this disprove moral nihilism? Or prove morality, which is the same thing?
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
Sam_Lowry
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11/27/2010 4:27:53 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
This has to be one of the worst arguments against Nihilism or relativism I've ever seen. Every example you gave just begged the question and your conclusion of

In short, relativism/nihilism is morally and socially disastrous, and by its own standards therefore an invalid worldview.

is a textbook non sequiter.

Furthermore, "Science" in the sense that we use the word cannot disprove relativism or nihilism. Science is empirical, moral relativism and nihilism is logical. Science cannot prove anything to be 100% true (in any meaningful definition of the word), so it is logical to remain skeptical. You act as if skeptics are secretive or disingenuous about this. It's pretty basic philosophical epistemology.
annhasle
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11/27/2010 4:56:17 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Since you make use of all 8,000 characters available, I decided to state my response in a new post instead of "quoting". Try to follow along.

1. Moral Nihilism

i. Your understanding of Nihilism seems to be very skewed if you think relativism and nihilism have anything in common. Let's look at definitions, shall we?

Moral nihilism: argues that nothing is moral or immoral

Moral Relativism: the meta-ethical position that the truth or falsity of moral judgments, or their justification, is not objective or universal but instead relative to the traditions, convictions, or practices of a group of people.

See the difference - moral nihilism denies the existence of morality whereas relativism accepts the existence of morals but not objective morals. These two meta-ethical positions are quite difference so I would refrain from lumping the two together.

ii. Now, throughout your post, you are speaking of moral nihilism which I think you need to clarify since there are multiple doctrines of nihilism, each different than the other. If you do not know the differences between them, I can clarify in my next post. I will refer to Moral Nihilists and Moral relativists as "Nihilists" and "Relativists" from now on, for the sake of character space.

2. Your contentions

i. Yes, there is no objective purpose, meaning or value of anything. Now, you obviously disagree with this but have yet to justify your position that there IS objective meaning, etc. Can you justify such a stance?

ii. Relativism is about subjectivity which you use quite a lot throughout your post. Now, nihilism is NOT subjective. Nihilists remain consistent throughout, always denying the existence of any morality - yes, that includes subjective morality that relativism enforces. Nihilists instead use self-interest to justify positions (this is based off of observance of fellow nihilists).

3. You asked: "Does the what-the-heck-we're-all-just-making-it-up-so-make-up-morals-that-serve-you-well lead to automatic tolerance or indifference?"

A: Nihilism does not create morals to better serve our interest since we DENY morality. Instead we look objectively at the situation in question and decide which course of action to take based upon the mitigating factors and potential benefits/risks. This is a much more efficient system since then we can justify our actions. Obviously it isn't as easy as a moral objectivist since you have yet to prove why - anything - is moral/immoral. Are you an emotivist?

4. Slavery

i. You bring up slavery as THE main contention in opposition to moral nihilism. But you do so without justifying why slavery is wrong. Now, I wouldn't condone slavery but here's why:

1. It's illegal (pretty big incentive not to)

2. The potential risks of rebellion and mass upheaval are too large for my comfort

3. No man deserves authority over another since such a position is illogical - humans are not inherently equal to each other and there's no inherent right to freedom or life really. HOWEVER, there is no logical reason for oppression or the use of authority since, even though one might be smarter or stronger, that doesn't make them an automatic candidate to oppress another.

4. In this society, the slaves would undoubtedly run away for minimum wage jobs and I wouldn't want to have to deal with the constant overturn of new slaves which then I have to train and terrorize to keep under my supervision

Now, see how I can get to the same conclusion as you but WITHOUT this need for "wrong" or "right"?

5. Your statement "The abolitionists was right, objectively, unequivocally, and I dare say absolutely, and the slaveholder was wrong and guilty of a real and erogenous evil."

i. Prove it. HOW is it wrong? HOW were the abolitionists right?

6. Your statement "So, relativism/nihilism doesn't provide a solid springboard for our sense of right & wrong to launch itself against the evils in the world, it doesn't explain or advocate altruism, kindness, compassion, social justice, honesty, etc. It can't even discern and admit a moral truth staring it squarely in the face and glaring at it, i.e., the immorality of slavery."

i. THAT IS NOT THE POINT OF MORAL NIHILISM. Nihilists do NOT want to provide a springboard for "right" and "wrong". We want to abolish such stances in favor for a more objective logical outlook!

ii. You seriously think that having morals automatically means you have "altruism, kindness, compassion, social justice, honesty, etc."?

Now, please do not focus on ONE point and ignore the rest. I want a FULL response, please. Thank you.
I'm not back. This idiot just upset me which made me stop lurking.
charleslb
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11/27/2010 4:56:28 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 4:21:49 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 11/27/2010 4:13:03 PM, charleslb wrote:
In short, relativism/nihilism is morally and socially disastrous, and by its own standards therefore an invalid worldview.

And how precisely does this follow? Let's grant, for the sake of argument, that if everyone became a Stirnerite egoist that the world would quickly devolve into chaos. How does this disprove moral nihilism? Or prove morality, which is the same thing?

The problem is that to a true, hardcore, dogmatic nihilist nothing whatsoever can be proven, even every supposedly empirical fact that we accept on a daily basis, and everything revealed to us by the no-nonsense scientific method can't be verified beyond a shadow of the unreasonable doubt of the nihilist. Trying to convince someone who's adopted the intellectual stance of nihilism of a moral truth is a laughable exercise in futility.

And so back to my slavery example to show how silly and insidious this is. The abolitionist couldn't prove that his moral views (and abolitionists were opposed to slavery on moral and religious grounds) were objectively right & true, but today most people realize that they were, and that the pro-slavery folks were guilty of defending a morally evil system.

Ah, but if a modern nihilist rejects the fundamental moral axioms that an abolitionist's arguments are based on, then the modern nihilist is in the position of being either neutral on slavery, in favor of allowing anyone who believes in slavery to practice his beliefs because they can't be refuted, or opposed to slavery on the grounds of some convoluted self-interest argument that finds slavery to be bad for society and therefore bad for my private interests as a member of society.

If this doesn't drive home the absurdity of denying the reality of objective moral truth for you then nothing will. And once again, there's no logical argument or "scientific", i.e., materialistic evidence to support intangible ethics and values, the sort of intangible ethics and values that a righteous opposition to slavery would be grounded in. You can conclude that we should therefore function like rationally self-interested egoists and that this would naturally produce an organization of society that would be mutually beneficial for its members, but I highly doubt this, the evidence that we have from groups, such as the mafia and motorcycle gangs, that are light on ethics and heavy on self-interest isn't exactly encouraging.

And rejecting morality in favor of "rational self-interest" is not only a perhaps pragmatically undesirable option, it's also not necessary, because although moral truths can't be proven in a way that would placate a nihilist, they can be verified in people's lives, in their hearts, in their history, and by an intuitive intelligence that we possess regardless of how viscerally materialists and nihilists will balk at the idea. Again, in the above ways moral truth can be adequately known if not demonstrated to the satisfaction of skeptics.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
bluesteel
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11/27/2010 4:58:34 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Moral nihilism is more real world.

If a serial killer is attacking you with an axe, do you:

a) Shoot him with your gun

b) Appeal to his inherent morality (it must be there somewhere! Nihilism can't possibly be true!!!!)
You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into - Jonathan Swift (paraphrase)
Reasoning
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11/27/2010 5:01:04 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 4:56:28 PM, charleslb wrote:
And once again, there's no logical argument or "scientific", i.e., materialistic evidence to support intangible ethics and values, the sort of intangible ethics and values that a righteous opposition to slavery would be grounded in.

Then we are agreed. There is no way to prove that there is anything objectively morally wrong with slavery.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
annhasle
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11/27/2010 5:04:09 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
In regards to your conclusion - which was a complete intellectual masturbation session for you (thanks bluesteel for that one :P) - I found one sentence that summed it up. You should try compacting your ideas from now on so I know what to focus on.

"To sum up here, relativism/nihilism promotes the acceptance of the wrongs in the world while at the same time preventing the development of true tolerance for people's differences. Relativism/nihilism is not an intellectually or ethically supportable stance."

Now, moral nihilism does NOT accept wrongs just like it does NOT accept rights. Those two terms are useless and not for viable use in my vocabulary. Instead, we use objectiveness to decide which course of action we're going to take and then use logic to justify our position. Well, at least I do. Now, YOU do not. Instead, you automatically concede to the present moral stances as though that "justifies" your position without any outlook on WHAT you are denying/enforcing.

I agree that relativism is not a ethically supportable stance (I have yet to see ONE good argument for moral relativism and am open to new info) but I will NEVER agree that nihilism isn't supportable. I'm quite done with your unjustified over-generalizations. If you have a point, prove it.
I'm not back. This idiot just upset me which made me stop lurking.
Sam_Lowry
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11/27/2010 5:22:49 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 4:56:28 PM, charleslb wrote:
The problem is that to a true, hardcore, dogmatic nihilist nothing whatsoever can be proven, even every supposedly empirical fact that we accept on a daily basis, and everything revealed to us by the no-nonsense scientific method can't be verified beyond a shadow of the unreasonable doubt of the nihilist. Trying to convince someone who's adopted the intellectual stance of nihilism of a moral truth is a laughable exercise in futility.

You act as if empirical evidence has a self evident place in epistemology. That's a bold claim that even many scientists would not make, yet you have not backed it up. nihilism is the antithesis of dogmatism. When you're argument is a three paragraph long logical fallacy, why are you surprised that people do not change their minds? Do you really not see that you're examples are textbook cases of begging the question? Really, there are much, much better examples of arguments against nihilism than what you've attempted. I would start with Wikipedia and work you're way up from there if I were you.

Ah, but if a modern nihilist rejects the fundamental moral axioms that an abolitionist's arguments are based on, then the modern nihilist is in the position of being either neutral on slavery, in favor of allowing anyone who believes in slavery to practice his beliefs because they can't be refuted, or opposed to slavery on the grounds of some convoluted self-interest argument that finds slavery to be bad for society and therefore bad for my private interests as a member of society.

Morality has no objective truth value. This does not exclude some type of biological empathy. If for some reason a nihilist feels good about freeing slaves, he would probably do so because it makes him feel good. You don't need to appeal to some kind of objective spiritual moral code to justify irrational desires. Read a book about psychology. Unless you are a clinical sociopath, it's literally impossible to live happily purely through purely "self interested actions" the way you imply. Most people are biologically wired for empathy whether they like it or not, and this has no bearing on whether or not morals are objective. They could just as easily be wired for mass murder or genocide.

And rejecting morality in favor of "rational self-interest" is not only a perhaps pragmatically undesirable option, it's also not necessary, because although moral truths can't be proven in a way that would placate a nihilist, they can be verified in people's lives, in their hearts, in their history, and by an intuitive intelligence that we possess regardless of how viscerally materialists and nihilists will balk at the idea. Again, in the above ways moral truth can be adequately known if not demonstrated to the satisfaction of skeptics.

Ah, I get it. You feel like morals are real and don't want to be wrong, therefore morals are objective. That's basically you're argument, right? I'd like to see how you would argue with a slaveholder, as all of you're arguments seem to work for slavery as well. A slaveholder would say that they feel that they were right in their heart, that history showed that they were right, that empirical evidence indicated were right, and that intuitive intelligence could not mislead them away from what is truly moral. I bet you know that your morals are better though, because you "feel" them harder than a slaveholder ever could.
bluesteel
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11/27/2010 5:24:43 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
lol, you're welcome ann

charles, you agree with slavery too. You would make us all slaves to your moral vision.

1. Objective morality states that one MUST believe X, Y, and Z
2. People should be free to decide their own worldview
3. Objective morality does not allow someone the freedom to disagree with X, Y, or Z
4. Those that are not free are slaves
5. Conclusion: objective morality is slavery.
You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into - Jonathan Swift (paraphrase)
charleslb
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11/27/2010 5:34:09 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 5:04:09 PM, annhasle wrote:
In regards to your conclusion - which was a complete intellectual masturbation session for you (thanks bluesteel for that one :P) - I found one sentence that summed it up. You should try compacting your ideas from now on so I know what to focus on.

"To sum up here, relativism/nihilism promotes the acceptance of the wrongs in the world while at the same time preventing the development of true tolerance for people's differences. Relativism/nihilism is not an intellectually or ethically supportable stance."

Now, moral nihilism does NOT accept wrongs just like it does NOT accept rights. Those two terms are useless and not for viable use in my vocabulary. Instead, we use objectiveness to decide which course of action we're going to take and then use logic to justify our position. Well, at least I do. Now, YOU do not. Instead, you automatically concede to the present moral stances as though that "justifies" your position without any outlook on WHAT you are denying/enforcing.

I agree that relativism is not a ethically supportable stance (I have yet to see ONE good argument for moral relativism and am open to new info) but I will NEVER agree that nihilism isn't supportable. I'm quite done with your unjustified over-generalizations. If you have a point, prove it.

And how, pray tell, seriously, how would just being rigorously "objective" and logical move you to take a stance against a great cruelty such as slavery. You can refuse to adopt the use of ethical terminology such as right and wrong, good and bad, etc. but cruelty is not a term that makes a value judgment like wrong or evil, it merely describes the fact that something has an unpleasant and harmful effect on someone. Slavery was therefore certainly arguably cruel, but how, in your philosophy, is this something to oppose? If it enhances my life to enslave you, and you don't matter to me because as a hardcore nihilist I've rejected the very concept of compassion and right & wrong, then how will logic dictate to me that I refrain from and oppose the cruelty of enslaving you?

What, are you going to come up with some convoluted rational self-interest argument to show how it's not really in my interest to practice slavery? Are you going to guarantee that it will always be the case that it's not in someone's self-interest to practice slavery? There was chattel slavery for thousands of years (forms of slavery still exist in some places), apparently a lot of folks found it to be in their interest to keep others as slaves, so dispensing with a rational self-interest argument how do you make a case, with only supposedly objective concepts and logic, that slavery is something that shouldn't exist or be permitted? Or do you admit the possibility of circumstances under which slavery would be acceptable in your book? If so, can you acknowledge how this is an extremely serious shortcoming for your nihilistic stance?

And by the way, while you're at it please explain to me how it is that we can know anything to be objective, as a confirmed nihilist you should know that everything could conceivably be a subjective misinterpretation or lie, that nothing should be trusted to be ontologically objective, so how do you prove the concepts that you classify as "objective" and that you base your approach to living on?

That is, how do you justify apparently not applying your nihilism to whatever you hold to be objective, furthermore how do you justify not applying your nihilism to itself, to its basic premises? Instead of just getting snippy and annoyed, and instead of getting all strident about how you reject conventional terms and categories that non-nihilists think in, see if you can actually answer these questions.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
annhasle
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11/27/2010 5:45:12 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 5:34:09 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 5:04:09 PM, annhasle wrote:

And how, pray tell, seriously, how would just being rigorously "objective" and logical move you to take a stance against a great cruelty such as slavery. You can refuse to adopt the use of ethical terminology such as right and wrong, good and bad, etc. but cruelty is not a term that makes a value judgment like wrong or evil, it merely describes the fact that something has an unpleasant and harmful effect on someone. Slavery was therefore certainly arguably cruel, but how, in your philosophy, is this something to oppose? If it enhances my life to enslave you, and you don't matter to me because as a hardcore nihilist I've rejected the very concept of compassion and right & wrong, then how will logic dictate to me that I refrain from and oppose the cruelty of enslaving you?

If you read the post that preceded this one, you would see my argument against the use of slavery based upon logical premises. And also, nihilism does not reject compassion. It rejects using compassion as a basis of deciding what is "wrong" and "right". Based upon what you have posted, you seem to base EVERYTHING off of your emotional responses which makes me LOL. If it makes you "feel bad", it must be wrong?

What, are you going to come up with some convoluted rational self-interest argument to show how it's not really in my interest to practice slavery? Are you going to guarantee that it will always be the case that it's not in someone's self-interest to practice slavery? There was chattel slavery for thousands of years (forms of slavery still exist in some places), apparently a lot of folks found it to be in their interest to keep others as slaves, so dispensing with a rational self-interest argument how do you make a case, with only supposedly objective concepts and logic, that slavery is something that shouldn't exist or be permitted? Or do you admit the possibility of circumstances under which slavery would be acceptable in your book? If so, can you acknowledge how this is an extremely serious shortcoming for your nihilistic stance?

Like I said, IF YOU HAD READ MY POST, you would see that I already addressed slavery in a logical outlook. However, you have yet to justify ONE stance of your own and instead have directed emotionally charged accusations at me as though I'm a heartless monster for denying morality. I still have "cares", okay? I just don't use them as THE basis for my actions! Come on, your entire post is just one fallacy after another. Appeal to emotion does NOT work, man.

And by the way, while you're at it please explain to me how it is that we can know anything to be objective, as a confirmed nihilist you should know that everything could conceivably be a subjective misinterpretation or lie, that nothing should be trusted to be ontologically objective, so how do you prove the concepts that you classify as "objective" and that you base your approach to living on?

Anything that I can logically deduce with clear justifications to it's objective "truth", I will accept. Mathematics and science falls under this category (I say this while disregarding Kant's a priori synthetic since it would complicate this too much for your basic understanding). I'm careful about what I deem to be the "truth" and I have RARELY found anything to be objectively true. However, gravity is something I would say is objectively true.

That is, how do you justify apparently not applying your nihilism to whatever you hold to be objective, furthermore how do you justify not applying your nihilism to itself, to its basic premises? Instead of just getting snippy and annoyed, and instead of getting all strident about how you reject conventional terms and categories that non-nihilists think in, see if you can actually answer these questions.

I apply my nihilistic outlook to things I can justify AS nihilistic. For example, meta-ethical nihilism is something that I wholeheartedly agree with. Epistemological nihilism is something that I find to be self-refuting and overall weak.

And if I'm "snippy or annoyed", it's because I have answered your questions but you continue to dance around mine and have yet to justify your entire stance!
I'm not back. This idiot just upset me which made me stop lurking.
Sam_Lowry
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11/27/2010 5:53:34 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 5:34:09 PM, charleslb wrote:

What, are you going to come up with some convoluted rational self-interest argument to show how it's not really in my interest to practice slavery?

Again, read a book on psychology. If you can rationalize away the analogy between you and a slave, there is nothing stopping you. To make this rationalization typically requires a religious or otherwise illogical context, which leaves everyone else with empathy and guilt by analogy, other than sociopaths who are biologically unable to empathize with others. Tell me, do you think that sociopaths are evil people even though they cannot choose whether or not they are able to empathize?

And by the way, while you're at it please explain to me how it is that we can know anything to be objective, as a confirmed nihilist you should know that everything could conceivably be a subjective misinterpretation or lie, that nothing should be trusted to be ontologically objective, so how do you prove the concepts that you classify as "objective" and that you base your approach to living on?

There are two easy answers. One is to apply skepticism to skepticism, which is not inherently contradictory. It's simply the acknowledgment that one literally knows nothing, rather than that nothing can be known. The other answer is to assert that nihilism only applies to the "outside world" and not to logical or internal concepts. If you think a thought, it self evidently exists because you experience it.

That is, how do you justify apparently not applying your nihilism to whatever you hold to be objective, furthermore how do you justify not applying your nihilism to itself, to its basic premises? Instead of just getting snippy and annoyed, and instead of getting all strident about how you reject conventional terms and categories that non-nihilists think in, see if you can actually answer these questions.

Anyone, nihilist or not, could answer those questions assuming that they had a very basic grasp of philosophy. I suspect that you don't.
annhasle
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11/27/2010 5:57:24 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 5:53:34 PM, Sam_Lowry wrote:
At 11/27/2010 5:34:09 PM, charleslb wrote:

Anyone, nihilist or not, could answer those questions assuming that they had a very basic grasp of philosophy. I suspect that you don't.

Exactly. And it's starting to get painful.

charleslb, clink on this link: http://lmgtfy.com...
I'm not back. This idiot just upset me which made me stop lurking.
Reasoning
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11/27/2010 6:00:58 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 5:34:09 PM, charleslb wrote:
If it enhances my life to enslave you, and you don't matter to me because as a hardcore nihilist I've rejected the very concept of compassion and right & wrong, then how will logic dictate to me that I refrain from and oppose the cruelty of enslaving you?

Compassion: a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.[1]

When did the moral nihilist reject compassion? I certainly have the emotion on occasion.

Moral nihilism is not a denial of life, on the contrary, it is its embrace.

Are you going to guarantee that it will always be the case that it's not in someone's self-interest to practice slavery?

Nope. That would just be incorrect. Sometimes it may be expedient to enslave another. In which case, I will do so. Other times, it will not be so expedient.

1 http://dictionary.reference.com...
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
charleslb
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11/27/2010 6:13:06 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 5:22:49 PM, Sam_Lowry wrote:
Most people are biologically wired for empathy whether they like it or not, and this has no bearing on whether or not morals are objective. They could just as easily be wired for mass murder or genocide.

And is this just a case of natural selection selecting and programming into our selfish genes a trait and tendency that in some roundabout way promotes individual, group, and species survival? Or does it say something about the nature of life, other than merely that life wants to perpetuate itself?

Of course to a materialistic mentality this is a silly rhetorical question, the obvious answer is that all there is to empathy and compassion is selfish genes trying to ensure their own survival. The materialist pats himself on the back for patly reducing everything to self-interest, which in turn is just the instinct of the matter we're made of to keep itself going as humans, or dogs, or cats, or whatever's written in our particular double helix.

But materialism is just another belief system, it requires a lot of belief and overlooking of its lacunae to remain committed to it, just as no religious or moral worldview is unambiguously true and without its holes. Oh sure, materialists conceitedly like to think that because they believe in hard matter they have a belief system that's 100% self-evident and solid, but there's plenty of interpretation of the data in their system, plenty of man-made ideas as opposed to straightforward facts. A smart and logical materialist or skeptic can't really defend his crass creed any better than a smart and logical adherent of a moral and spiritual philosophy.

Does this mean that everyone on both sides is just preaching to the choir, that there's no point or sense in arguing and debating? No, it just means that the closed-minded, again on both sides, can't be reached. But those of us who don't have a closed mind can benefit from intellectual exchanges and reading the views of those on the other side. I'm a good example, cynics among you might think that I'm one of the chauvinistically closed-minded, but I've learned much from materialists, for instance rather than closed-mindedly rejecting scientific theories such as evolution, I've accepted and assimilated them into my personal weltanschauung, and I've grown intellectually as a result. Perhaps open-minded materialists can do likewise, and gain some benefit from a conversation with votaries of moral and spiritual viewpoints. There's still hope for those who aren't proud dogmatists.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
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11/27/2010 6:34:18 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 5:45:12 PM, annhasle wrote:

If you read the post that preceded this one, you would see my argument against the use of slavery based upon logical premises.

Like I said, IF YOU HAD READ MY POST, you would see that I already addressed slavery in a logical outlook. However, you have yet to justify ONE stance of your own and instead have directed emotionally charged accusations at me as though I'm a heartless monster for denying morality.

And if I'm "snippy or annoyed", it's because I have answered your questions but you continue to dance around mine and have yet to justify your entire stance!

No, in fact you did not specifically address my slavery example or endeavor to construct an argument based on your nihilistic principles to show how nihilism can oppose a great cruelty such as slavery, you just spouted your general principles and views about objective grounds for thinking and doing what you think and do, yep, once again you just claimed to function logically and claimed that this leads you in the best direction in life, you absolutely did not make a case for nihilism being a viewpoint that would combat the meanness, murder, and mayhem making life miserable for masses of human beings.

Actually you still haven't done so! You just keep retreating behind your core ideological stance and your annoyance. Said annoyance is due not to my tendency to dance around your questions but to my pestering you to construct specific arguments to prove how nihilism can motivate prosocial behavior such as fighting the injustices in the world (oh my, is "injustice" another moralistic term that you reject out of hand, do you deny that there is such an objective thing as injustice?). Come on, challenge yourself and really justify your rejection of the concepts of morality and right & wrong, or is that too mentally stressful for you? Honestly it seems that coming up with better and more specific arguments is really what's stressing you out, not moi.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
GeoLaureate8
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11/27/2010 6:41:05 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 5:01:04 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 11/27/2010 4:56:28 PM, charleslb wrote:
And once again, there's no logical argument or "scientific", i.e., materialistic evidence to support intangible ethics and values, the sort of intangible ethics and values that a righteous opposition to slavery would be grounded in.

Then we are agreed. There is no way to prove that there is anything objectively morally wrong with slavery.

Then why are you a Libertarian? Why don't you just be an Authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
Reasoning
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11/27/2010 6:45:47 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 6:41:05 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Then why are you a Libertarian? Why don't you just be an Authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?

There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
annhasle
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11/27/2010 6:47:38 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 6:34:18 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 5:45:12 PM, annhasle wrote:

If you read the post that preceded this one, you would see my argument against the use of slavery based upon logical premises.

Like I said, IF YOU HAD READ MY POST, you would see that I already addressed slavery in a logical outlook. However, you have yet to justify ONE stance of your own and instead have directed emotionally charged accusations at me as though I'm a heartless monster for denying morality.

And if I'm "snippy or annoyed", it's because I have answered your questions but you continue to dance around mine and have yet to justify your entire stance!

No, in fact you did not specifically address my slavery example or endeavor to construct an argument based on your nihilistic principles to show how nihilism can oppose a great cruelty such as slavery, you just spouted your general principles and views about objective grounds for thinking and doing what you think and do, yep, once again you just claimed to function logically and claimed that this leads you in the best direction in life, you absolutely did not make a case for nihilism being a viewpoint that would combat the meanness, murder, and mayhem making life miserable for masses of human beings.

Actually you still haven't done so! You just keep retreating behind your core ideological stance and your annoyance. Said annoyance is due not to my tendency to dance around your questions but to my pestering you to construct specific arguments to prove how nihilism can motivate prosocial behavior such as fighting the injustices in the world (oh my, is "injustice" another moralistic term that you reject out of hand, do you deny that there is such an objective thing as injustice?). Come on, challenge yourself and really justify your rejection of the concepts of morality and right & wrong, or is that too mentally stressful for you? Honestly it seems that coming up with better and more specific arguments is really what's stressing you out, not moi.

You are really that intellectually challenged? As I stated before, since I do not believe morality has any objective truth or value, I have to resort to objectiveness and logical deduction which is EXACTLY what I did with the slavery example. Now, moral nihilism is the denial of "moral" and "immoral" - the antithesis of morality - so how can I USE that? Come on, charles. Since I'm a nihilist I have to use LOGIC instead of morality - do you understand now?

Now, if you want me to do a "run down" of why I reject immorality, here is why: since there is no objective truth or value to morality, and no logical justification for it, I will not pander to society's outlook of "wrong" and "right". Can you grasp that? If I cannot PROVE it to exist, or at least logically deduce it to such an extent where it SEEMS to be of use or I can accept it beyond a reasonable doubt, then I will not implement it in my life. Simple as that. I'm not "stressed out" nor am I unable to articulate why I am a moral nihilist, but I am STILL annoyed that once again you completely ignored my first post and instead limit your responses to a sentence or two of my entire post. If you want me to take the time to explain why I'm a nihilist, then you should be able to take the time to explain why you're an objectivist. Or is that too challenging?
I'm not back. This idiot just upset me which made me stop lurking.
charleslb
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11/27/2010 6:53:59 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 6:45:47 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:41:05 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Then why are you a Libertarian? Why don't you just be an Authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?

There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient.

Facile and lame.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
annhasle
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11/27/2010 6:54:51 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 6:53:59 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:45:47 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:41:05 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Then why are you a Libertarian? Why don't you just be an Authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?

There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient.

Facile and lame.

Aw, don't talk about yourself that way charleslb.
I'm not back. This idiot just upset me which made me stop lurking.
Reasoning
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11/27/2010 6:55:02 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 6:53:59 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:45:47 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:41:05 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Then why are you a Libertarian? Why don't you just be an Authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?

There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient.

Facile and lame.

How so?
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
charleslb
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11/27/2010 6:57:47 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 6:54:51 PM, annhasle wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:53:59 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:45:47 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:41:05 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Then why are you a Libertarian? Why don't you just be an Authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?

There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient.

Facile and lame.

Aw, don't talk about yourself that way charleslb.

Using my comments to someone else to insult me, now you're just being immaturely snide, despite our philosophical differences I thought you were better than that, I'm sincerely disappointed.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
annhasle
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11/27/2010 7:00:11 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 6:57:47 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:54:51 PM, annhasle wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:53:59 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:45:47 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:41:05 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Then why are you a Libertarian? Why don't you just be an Authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?

There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient.

Facile and lame.

Aw, don't talk about yourself that way charleslb.

Using my comments to someone else to insult me, now you're just being immaturely snide, despite our philosophical differences I thought you were better than that, I'm sincerely disappointed.

It's true, I was being immature. But you should know that it was completely in jest not seriousness. Regardless, if I offended you, I apologize and would sincerely like to know why Reasoning's position (which I also agree with) is facile and lame?
I'm not back. This idiot just upset me which made me stop lurking.
Sam_Lowry
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11/27/2010 7:04:25 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 6:13:06 PM, charleslb wrote:
And is this just a case of natural selection selecting and programming into our selfish genes a trait and tendency that in some roundabout way promotes individual, group, and species survival? Or does it say something about the nature of life, other than merely that life wants to perpetuate itself?

You say this as if there was some overbearing intelligent designer who refuses to let any mutations occur that do not ensure long term survival or adaptation. Life doesn't want to do anything. It just is. In addition to those psychology books, I highly recommend some texts on evolution.

But materialism is just another belief system, it requires a lot of belief and overlooking of its lacunae to remain committed to it, just as no religious or moral worldview is unambiguously true and without its holes. Oh sure, materialists conceitedly like to think that because they believe in hard matter they have a belief system that's 100% self-evident and solid, but there's plenty of interpretation of the data in their system, plenty of man-made ideas as opposed to straightforward facts. A smart and logical materialist or skeptic can't really defend his crass creed any better than a smart and logical adherent of a moral and spiritual philosophy.

Horrible straw man. No half intelligent materialist would ever say "our current theory or understanding of the universe is 100% correct." Materialism is nothing more than acknowledging cause and effect being applied on a universal scale. Materialism is completely independent from our current scientific understanding of the universe. I probably should have mentioned this earlier, but you should probably look into buying a book on basic philosophy as well.

No, in fact you did not specifically address my slavery example or endeavor to construct an argument based on your nihilistic principles to show how nihilism can oppose a great cruelty such as slavery, you just spouted your general principles and views about objective grounds for thinking and doing what you think and do, yep, once again you just claimed to function logically and claimed that this leads you in the best direction in life, you absolutely did not make a case for nihilism being a viewpoint that would combat the meanness, murder, and mayhem making life miserable for masses of human beings.

This is still a non sequiter. Nihilism could lead to famine, starvation, mass genocide, and universal extinction, and it would still not necessarily be false. You are literally arguing that since the consequences of nihilism are horrible, nihilism cannot be true.
charleslb
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11/28/2010 12:13:01 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/27/2010 7:00:11 PM, annhasle wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:57:47 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:54:51 PM, annhasle wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:53:59 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:45:47 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:41:05 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Then why are you a Libertarian? Why don't you just be an Authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?

There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient.

Facile and lame.

Aw, don't talk about yourself that way charleslb.

Using my comments to someone else to insult me, now you're just being immaturely snide, despite our philosophical differences I thought you were better than that, I'm sincerely disappointed.

It's true, I was being immature. But you should know that it was completely in jest not seriousness. Regardless, if I offended you, I apologize and would sincerely like to know why Reasoning's position (which I also agree with) is facile and lame?

Thanks for the clarification. And to answer your question, GeoLaureate8 wrote a reply to reasoning that challenged him with the question" "Why don't you just be an authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?" And rather than giving a good argument for his position Reasoning merely replied: "There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient." His brilliant argument for why we shouldn't practice slavery is that it wouldn't be expedient! Come on, I know many users of this site appreciate brevity, but this isn't brevity, it's a facile, glib reply, and as such a lame defense of Reasoning's viewpoint. That's why I called it facile and lame.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
annhasle
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11/28/2010 12:27:47 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 11/28/2010 12:13:01 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 7:00:11 PM, annhasle wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:57:47 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:54:51 PM, annhasle wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:53:59 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:45:47 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 11/27/2010 6:41:05 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
Then why are you a Libertarian? Why don't you just be an Authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?

There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient.

Facile and lame.

Aw, don't talk about yourself that way charleslb.

Using my comments to someone else to insult me, now you're just being immaturely snide, despite our philosophical differences I thought you were better than that, I'm sincerely disappointed.

It's true, I was being immature. But you should know that it was completely in jest not seriousness. Regardless, if I offended you, I apologize and would sincerely like to know why Reasoning's position (which I also agree with) is facile and lame?

Thanks for the clarification. And to answer your question, GeoLaureate8 wrote a reply to reasoning that challenged him with the question" "Why don't you just be an authoritarian and buy slaves that serve your self-interest, there's nothing wrong with that, right?" And rather than giving a good argument for his position Reasoning merely replied: "There's also nothing right with that. It would be inexpedient." His brilliant argument for why we shouldn't practice slavery is that it wouldn't be expedient! Come on, I know many users of this site appreciate brevity, but this isn't brevity, it's a facile, glib reply, and as such a lame defense of Reasoning's viewpoint. That's why I called it facile and lame.

You know what - I think you believe it's "facile and lame" because it was a one sentence reply instead of an essay on it's justifications. Well, short =/= lame nor facile. Reasoning's position is completely justified, it was simply concise. AND it answered Geo's question. Now, do you want to know why it was an appropriate response?

Let's start with, "There's nothing wrong with that." Now, this should be expected from a moral nihilist such as Reasoning, Cody or myself. Like I said before, we DO remain consistent in our judgments of situations. And, like others and myself have done in this thread, we have given ample evidence as to why nihilism is a respectable position in meta-ethics. Any objections there?

Next, "It would be inexpedient". This is also a justifiable stance. With reasons in my preceding posts, I have shown you why slavery would be inexpedient to anyone. This is a purely logical stance, which means - unlike your emotional rant - it can be broken down and deduced with rational. Slavery is not a viable source of labor if you want more benefits than risks - and I do believe that everyone's purpose in labor is to find the most efficient source. Now, any objections there?

So, charleslb, instead of automatically disregarding Reasoning's post, what are your objections to it now that I've broken it down for you?
I'm not back. This idiot just upset me which made me stop lurking.