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Revisiting Moral Objectivism with Mathematical Notation


tk102
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You would also be against torture I take it, genocide, being allowed to get away with atrocities, ect, that would be correct wouldn't it?

 

Well you tell me. Obviously a lot of people are morally wrong, they don't abide by a mathamatical sheet like a computer. So the question is how to fix that.

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You would also be against torture I take it, genocide, being allowed to get away with atrocities, ect, that would be correct wouldn't it?
Absolutely correct. That is why... for instance... I oppose US/UK torture, US/UK sponsored genocide and US/UK atrocities worldwide. It's basic morality.

 

Well you tell me. Obviously a lot of people are morally wrong, they don't abide by a mathamatical sheet like a computer. So the question is how to fix that.
Well Nancy, how do you try to "fix" the fact that a lot of people commit CRIMES? You penalise them and take measures to prevent further crimes.

 

It'd be the same with morality, and ideally, the law SHOULD be pure morality. The fact that the law is currently flawed means that campaigning is necessary to improve the legal system and our lexicon of laws. That's all.

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Iraqi torture, Palestinion\Iranian sponsered genocide, Middle Eastern Muslim terrorist atrocities.

 

The law would be of absolutes? Would there be any thought given to whether or not for example a criminal was abused? Or a vigilante acted out of lack of police action?

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Iraqi torture, Palestinion\Iranian sponsered genocide, Middle Eastern Muslim terrorist atrocities.
All torture, all genocide, all terrorism. Whether committed by us or by someone else. That's morality. It's one standard for everyone.

 

If they do it, it's wrong. If we do it it is also wrong.

 

The law would be of absolutes? Would there be any thought given to whether or not for example a criminal was abused? Or a vigilante acted out of lack of police action?
One presumes that under the ideal legal system, there would be at LEAST the same amount of consideration for individual circumstances as there is now. Is there some point you're trying to make?
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Not really an exception to the rule, Nancy.

 

The ruleset must be set up to ACCOMMODATE individual variations in order to be optimally moral. Like our self-defence laws. We are allowed under the law to defend ourselves, and if it's necessary to kill someone who is attacking you with lethal force, it is legally justifiable to do so. This is not an "exception to the anti murder law" so much as it is a recognised special circumstance that warrants its own rule.

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Just because something is regarded as moral in one culture and immoral in another means nothing, except that at least ONE of those cultures has gotten it wrong.

Before you seek knowledge, you have to know that you are ignorant.

It might be the case that there is no preference between right and wrong respect to other cultures.

Maybe there is no static wrong or right; but a choice of the society.

Well, of course not other cultures on Earth, maybe far beyond Earth.

Other universes maybe!

 

But I'm wasting my time telling you wisdom, you only care for logic.

 

 

Like numbers, objective morality is an abstract objective standard, it remains static whether people perceive it correctly or not.

 

I don't agree that morality can be objective to intelligent life forms, since most intelligent living beings, that we know of here have emotions and personal bias.

And also the abstract concept of morality, was conceive by humans here that had emotions and personal bias, of course.

 

Maybe a A.I. (artificial intelligence) can be objective to morality, since they won't have no emotions, unless the intelligent lifeform can figure out how to give it human or intelligence life form emotions.

 

Since it's looks like presently (maybe when we become more of aware of the rest of existence) that a A.I. don't get created by the universe, a intelligent life form will have to create the A.I. intelligence, a intelligence life form that will have it's personal bias influencing the preference of the A.I. intelligence.

 

That will of course, lead to negating a A.I.'s moral objectivity. :)

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windu6:

 

You're back! I can say without fear of contradiction from any quarter: The place most definitely wasn't the same without you. As for your contentions that morality cannot be objective because people have personal bias, it's nonsense. Numbers remain objective even when mathematicians get their sums wrong, and morality remains objective even when nobody in the whole world has perceived the correct, moral course of action to take in a certain circumstance.

 

Morality is a dry equation. To each moral question, there is a "right" answer (an optimally moral answer) and there are infinite "wrong" answers. (Less moral courses of action.)

 

It doesn't matter whether people choose the right answer or not. The answer remains out in the aether, an abstract truth that may be attainable to those with the necessary reasoning power to see it, and the necessary empathy to want to see it.

 

As for your persistent references to alien life forms and artificial intelligences... They're all irrelevant and laughable. No offence.

 

jmac7142:

 

Slavery was (and is currently, I might add) considered perfectly acceptable in many cultures throughout history. All those cultures got their moral sums wrong. The fact that they believed it to be acceptable does not make it moral. Likewise in our own culture and our own time, there are those who believe invading a sovereign nation without just cause is moral. They are wrong. Their belief affects the moral equation not a jot.

 

In short, you'd struggle to provide a reason why objective moralism is an "ass way of thinking" as you put it... But it's your right to hold such an unsupported belief I suppose. ;)

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windu6:

 

You're back! I can say without fear of contradiction from any quarter: The place most definitely wasn't the same without you.

Yeah whatever! :)

I can assure you no one here miss me.

I'm the weird one! ;)

Also I'm hated by others.

As for your contentions that morality cannot be objective because people have personal bias

I didn't say only personal bias also I said emotions. :)

 

it's nonsense

There is no definite nonsense there is only uncertainty.

Meaning is relative!

Nonsense is relative!

Some knowledge seems nonsensical only because of ignorance of the infinite existence;the infinite meaning of existence.

 

 

 

Numbers remain objective even when mathematicians get their sums wrong

Do you mean numbers already exist, before intelligent lifeforms conceive of them?

If that is the case then you will have to accept the possibility that knowledge is infinite and you can't only say someone can get it wrong, since infinity will imply none of us got the total abstract truth; right or wrong respect to morality will be fraught with uncertainty.

We will always be seeking knowledge and will possibly always remain igorrant of the true abstract truth. :)

 

morality remains objective even when nobody in the whole world has perceived the correct, moral course of action to take in a certain circumstance.

How can you be sure that we know what is truely right or wrong in existence?

Only evidence we have of morality, is here on Earth.

Think outside the box, you should consider.

Morality is a dry equation.

What is a dry equation? I never heard of that one.

 

To each moral question, there is a "right" answer (an optimally moral answer) and there are infinite "wrong" answers. (Less moral courses of action.)

Ok I'm going to ask you some questions.

If you had to save your love one from death and a non-love one from death, by preventing them from falling off a cliff, but you can only save one of them.

Which one will you chose to save, your love one or the stranger?

Since you can only save one of them and one of them will have to die is it morally right or wrong to chose?

If you decide to fall with them, is it morally right or wrong to commit suicide?

If you save one of them is it morally right or wrong, to make that choice?

If you save neither of them is it morally right or wrong, to make that choice?

Remember if you let either one of them die you are immoral, according to your reasoning.

Also will you save your love one over the stranger?

Are you amoral if you commit suicide?

 

It doesn't matter whether people choose the right answer or not. The answer remains out in the aether, an abstract truth that may be attainable to those with the necessary reasoning power to see it, and the necessary empathy to want to see it.

 

Empathy, if you depend on that you can't be objective; feelings are bias by the emotions.

Feelings: Emotional or moral sensitivity (especially in relation to personal principles or dignity)

Personal it says, bias! :)

 

As for your persistent references to alien life forms and artificial intelligences... They're all irrelevant and laughable. No offence.

They are relevant, you are being bias, Spider. :)

Our society is not the only one.

Also artificial intelligences, will have emotions one day; we should include them in discussion of the philosophy of morality.

You should consider breaking down your enclose walls of skepticism.

Or, you will remain ignorant of the abstract truth of existence.

No offence and I'm trying to be nice here. ;)

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jmac7142:

 

Slavery was (and is currently, I might add) considered perfectly acceptable in many cultures throughout history. All those cultures got their moral sums wrong. The fact that they believed it to be acceptable does not make it moral. Likewise in our own culture and our own time, there are those who believe invading a sovereign nation without just cause is moral. They are wrong. Their belief affects the moral equation not a jot.

No, you believe that they are immoral.

 

Nice job trying to get me to argue for slavery and the Iraq War by the way.

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Jmac:

 

No, you believe that they are immoral.
Of course I believe that such things as slavery and illegal international aggression are immoral, because an unbroken chain of logical reasoning leads me to believe that they are immoral. Morality is defined by reason and logic.

 

Nice job trying to get me to argue for slavery and the Iraq War by the way.
I don't think you understood the point I was trying to make, Jmac. Perhaps I didn't make myself clear enough. I'm not "trying to get you to argue for" anything. I am pointing out that just because a group of people (be it a minority or an entire culture... or the whole world) believes something to be moral... doesn't make it moral.

 

If two people have different ideas about the most moral course of action in a given situation... one or both of them are wrong. That is the point. That morality is not "whatever we feel like" at the time, it is an abstract that we either perceive correctly... or fail to perceive correctly.

 

You may sit there and state that this is an "ass way of thinking", but once again... you have no good reasons to make such statements, you have not CITED any such reasons and frankly you will never find such reasons, in my estimation.

 

Windu:

 

I didn't say only personal bias also I said emotions.
Emotions are merely contributing factors within the larger issue of bias, Windu. Therefore this has already been addressed.

 

Nonsense is relative!
No, there is either sense... that is: that which makes sense, that which is logical... or nonsense. That which is not logical. They are absolutes. There is no issue of relativism when it comes to the question of whether someone is "making sense".

 

We will always be seeking knowledge and will possibly always remain igorrant of the true abstract truth.
Of course. As an objectivist, I automatically have to accept the possibility that I will never attain the state of perceiving absolute truth.

 

And furthermore, I must accept the certainty that I will never KNOW to an absolute degree whether I have attained such a state or not, even if I have in fact attained it.

 

But that doesn't signify anything. The fact that we are fallible human organisms doesn't mean that there is no objective truth. It merely means that we may be incapable of perceiving it.

 

Ok I'm going to ask you some questions.
Okay, I'll address your hypothetical as best I can.

 

First to even out the question a little, let's assume that the two people (your lover and the stranger) are of the same age and apparent physical health.

 

Let's discard your options that involve jumping off after them, as suicide would serve no useful purpose, moral or otherwise.

 

Next let's suggest that it's morally necessary to save at least one of them, as letting them both die would merely be shirking one's moral responsibility to help if possible.

 

Next let's point out that making a judgement based on one's personal affections for one of the falling individuals is immoral. It's perfectly human and understandable, but personal bias should be disregarded, ideally.

 

So we have come to the conclusion that- morally speaking- one must save one of the individuals. It is therefore morally necessary to make a dispassionate choice as to which person to save. Since we know nothing about the stranger, it's hard to weigh the impact of his/her death against the death of one's lover. Perhaps if the stranger was a family man supporting several children and one's lover was childless it would be more moral to save the stranger. But this set of factors would have to be established before such a judgement could be made.

 

In a situation where nothing is known about the stranger, it would be impossible to weigh their life against the life of one's lover... therefore to save either would be equally moral.

 

Empathy, if you depend on that you can't be objective; feelings are bias by the emotions.
As noted before, objective morality is MOTIVATED by empathy, not DEFINED by empathy. Logic defines the correct- most moral- course of action in each situation. Not empathy.

 

They are relevant, you are being bias, Spider.

Our society is not the only one.

Alien civilisations ARE irrelevant Windu, not least because you have no evidence to suggest the existence of such civilisations... but also because we are discussing a very human and very terrestrial issue, the issue of morality.
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We're not talking about "one set of morals", Nancy. That phrase still contains relativistic connotations. We're talking about the only set of morals. Logically arrived at morality is the only morality. It is objective morality.

 

We may all have different ideas about complex moral questions, but that doesn't mean that we're "all right", and conversely it doesn't necessarily mean ANY of us are right. Once again, if you and I come up with a different answer to a complex moral question, it doesn't mean that "both our answers are valid". It means one or BOTH of us is wrong. Plain and simple.

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Sigh. No Nancy, Stalinism is totally unrelated to the simple idea that there is a moral way to behave... and there are immoral ways to behave. Once again, your post is one big reactionary non-sequitur.

 

Needless to say, I will not address any further nonsense implying that my viewpoint is "Stalinist". :rolleyes:

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Nancy, come on... it's not Stalinist to believe that numbers are universal is it? Even if you use base10 and I use base2, or if you use Arabic and I use Chinese characters, the numbers still represent the same amount. The idea that is being discussed in this thread presupposes that morality is objective and universal in the same way with the goal describing the morality as an equation.

 

Spider AL provided a link to the Moral Relativism thread for discussions regarding the the nature of morality. I'd invite you and anyone else in this thread who wishes to debate that topic to do so in that thread. If you have critiques regarding how morality can be quanitified or symbolically defined, please post them in this thread. :)

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Of course numbers are universal. However to add 2 and 2 together, in this case saying that because there is this mathamatical process of morality it should be the only one that applies, you end up with 5 rather than 4. You are not going to take this and have people from other cultures or even the same culture adopt it, there's just no way they will stop doing what they feel is right no matter how much we disagree with it.

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You are not going to take this and have people from other cultures or even the same culture adopt it, there's just no way they will stop doing what they feel is right no matter how much we disagree with it.
Assuming "we" are the ones who are right in the matter, we would be able to create a stronger argument based on sound reasoning how the actions carried out by this other culture were immoral. "We" would have to be on guard to avoid shading our conclusions with personal biases in order to keep the argument objective as possible. Of course the audience we are appealing to will also have to set aside their personal biases and consider our argument.

 

Your critique is about the difficulty of trying to convince others to act morally. Of course that is not an easy thing to accomplish, but just because something is difficult to do, doesn't mean you shouldn't try. It would be immoral not to wouldn't it?

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Well here's where things get a little complicated. Let's take Iraq as an example. They were living under a tyrannical rule and an attempt was made to bring to them democracy, freedom of speech, of action. The Iraqis seized the freedom, including killing of and terrorist acts against America, because they no longer had to fear torture and execution under Saddam. If anything it would have been more moral to act in this situation because the people weren't holding to a way of life that, according to one set of values, is wrong, rather they were being prevented from expressing these values. Would it have been more moral not to intercede given what our good intentions have achieved? That's an excellent topic for another thread. Secondly, how broad does this mathamatical list go? If you see a thug threatening a woman with a shotgun for example are you according to this list morally allowed to punch their lights out? Snap their neck? Stab them? Shoot them yourself? How about grabbing the thug and smashing their face against the floor? One of the difficulties in any case lies in that in these situations you have about a split second to act and you do not, nor can you, think whether or not the action you take will be moral or not. Just on that, what happens if we add up something on this list and it says, for example, homosexuality is wrong? Religion is wrong? Not having the right job or car is wrong?

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Emotions are merely contributing factors within the larger issue of bias, Windu. Therefore this has already been addressed.

But you can't ignore emotions.

Morality is useless without emotions or empathy; you won't give a damn about doing good or evil if you have no emotions or sympathy for others.

 

No, there is either sense... that is: that which makes sense, that which is logical... or nonsense. That which is not logical. They are absolutes. There is no issue of relativism when it comes to the question of whether someone is "making sense".

 

Yes there is; the knowledge we have acquired today about the universe was once thought nonsense, until over time meaning was gained.

Since you keep believing that we are the only ones and the current knowledge about the universe is only known to us.

That imply the rest of the knowledge of the universe relative to us remain nonsensical, for the time being.

As time go by and we continue to explore existence the present nonsense will become meaningful to us in the ongoing future.

Like for example the existence of black holes was once thought of as nonsense, until more and more knowledge was gained about the universe, then the meaningful explanation of the existense of the Blackholes was obtained.

The current nonsense is the big bang singularity, that was suppose to had created our universe, but as the unproved theories of our universe slowing bring understanding, such as String Theory, M-Theory and Quantum Gravity more meaning replace the nonsense.

Where do you suppose the concept of morality come from?

Nowhere!

 

The explanation of our own existense is nonsense in terms of logic.

 

A first creator to existence don't make no logical sense, because it is a contradiction, it conflicts with a logic principle called, the principle of the excluded middle, that states by the assumption of a person who use logic, that no proposition is both true and false. It must be only true and only false.A first creator won't have a creator, that means to logician, he would have to conclude, that the first creator will have to create itself out of nothing also, which will be a contradiction to the principle of the excluded middle.

A creator created itself!

The creator came from nothing.

So, that will make the first creator infinite, which will imply a contradiction in it's own creation.

Since infinity is true and false at the same time.

A logician will have to called the idea of a first creator illogical, if he/she follow logic strictly, but a atheist, don't believe in a creator or creators of any kind, but the idea of no creator is also illogical.

Because we will have to be created from nothing and nothing to a logician is nonsense.

 

If you follow logic so strongly like a religion as you do Spider, the concept of morality had to come from somewhere, that was acquired by the ancient philosophers, that they gave to our society today. :)

 

 

 

Of course. As an objectivist, I automatically have to accept the possibility that I will never attain the state of perceiving absolute truth.

And furthermore, I must accept the certainty that I will never KNOW to an absolute degree whether I have attained such a state or not, even if I have in fact attained it.

Well, then you can't boldly say someone gotten it wrong with high confidence. :)

Uncertainy seems to ruled existence. ;)

 

But that doesn't signify anything. The fact that we are fallible human organisms doesn't mean that there is no objective truth. It merely means that we may be incapable of perceiving it.

Then it's possible that something out there that can perceive it; which can imply we aren't alone in existence. :)

And we aren't superior!

 

 

 

 

Let's discard your options that involve jumping off after them, as suicide would serve no useful purpose, moral or otherwise.

Well, I included that because some people will commit sucicide because of guilt or to save many others in dire circumstances.

Like the people in the twin towers on 9/11 jump with others because of guilt.

Or, a solider jump in the line of fire to save his buddies in combat; sucicide he commit.

Next let's point out that making a judgement based on one's personal affections for one of the falling individuals is immoral. It's perfectly human and understandable, but personal bias should be disregarded, ideally.

What do you mean ideally, there seems to be nothing ideal in real life, on Earth?

You know this is laughable, you're saying you will let your family member die over the stranger? :lol:

Because you don't want to be immoral? :lol:

 

It is therefore morally necessary to make a dispassionate choice as to which person to save. Since we know nothing about the stranger, it's hard to weigh the impact of his/her death against the death of one's lover. Perhaps if the stranger was a family man supporting several children and one's lover was childless it would be more moral to save the stranger. But this set of factors would have to be established before such a judgement could be made.

Man you are sounding like a computer A.I.?

So, you saying some strangers children is more important than your own family member? :lol:

Also I was not talking about a lover; your family member, when say love one.

 

In a situation where nothing is known about the stranger, it would be impossible to weigh their life against the life of one's lover... therefore to save either would be equally moral.

Since you believe that our society is the ONLY one.

And we are superior!

No it won't, you let someone die that who's death, that you could've prevented, in this society that is against the rules of morality; Negligent homicide.

 

No one life should be weighed, never.

In the concetration camps, the victims was force to make that choice of weighing someone's life over the other, by the immoral SS concentration camp

guard.

So, those victims made choices like that, will be label immoral by some in our society.

The point I'm trying to make that if you have emotions, sympathy and personal bias, you possibly can't be truly morally objective.

 

As noted before, objective morality is MOTIVATED by empathy, not DEFINED by empathy. Logic defines the correct- most moral- course of action in each situation. Not empathy.

So, you saying logic should determine who should die and don't die. :lol:

Logic only should determine who's life more valuable than someone else life.

That's rediculous!

The Nazis use that kind of reasoning, when they imbrace evil in the death camps.

The Jews lives was not valuable at all, in the like of other ethnic groups that was death camp victims.

A Jew life was consider less valuable, than other concentration camp prisoners, because they was consider inferior. So, with the logic the Nazis use, the more of them(Jews) die, the less immoral it is to them(Nazis) .

Because, they were seen like wood in their inferiority, so worthless.

I think it's really amoral to only use Logic to determine who will die and who won't die.

 

but also because we are discussing a very human and very terrestrial issue, the issue of morality.

What, you believe morality and other knowledge was only acquired and invented by us?

What about animals like elephants, gorillas, monkeys dogs, etc... they should be included too.

They have empathy!

It's utter arrogance, to include only us and to say we are only ones in existence.

What, do you believe that all those planets, stars and galaxies out there is just decoration?

To be admired at!

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As noted before, objective morality is MOTIVATED by empathy, not DEFINED by empathy. Logic defines the correct- most moral- course of action in each situation. Not empathy.

 

Quantifications versus emotion, eh Al?

 

Well, that would be the logical thing to do. But don't expect anyone to follow logic in such a time as when forced to make such a choice.

 

I guess what it boils down to then, is what's in your mind. And for just about all of us, who love is infinitely more important than who others love. Saving one over saving others because of brain chemicals and nerve readings.

 

What you believe morality and other knowledge was only acquired and invented by us?

What about animals like elephants, gorillas, monkeys dogs, etc.

 

I've seen your posts before, and much as I'm tempted to ignore them.. I just can't. Agh. Anyway. The answer to your question is

 

YES. It was invented by us because we are the only bloody animals on Earth to post at 2:49 am in the morning on a thread regarding moral objectivism. And before you give me the whole "dude just cause they can't do stuff like talk or communicate with us doesn't mean they don't think like we do and have morals and stuff" schtick, I'd like to say that just cause I don't have wings doesn't mean I can't fly. Oh wait.

 

But if you must persist in this endeavor of advocating animal morality, show me some clear cut evidence and I'll consider it. Until then, fly Mikey fly.

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