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Old 2012-09-14, 11:11   Link #23561
Ascaloth
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
Heh, apparently some anonymous coward thinks my statement is "racist bigotry" rather than an indictment of anyone of the human species who behaves this way, regardless of what kind. Repeated just to emphasize the "enraged two year old" seems to apply to him or her. Anyone who knows me knows how ridiculous and ignorant that accusation is.
So... is it just me, or did anyone else read Vexx-jiji's negrep in the voice of Achmed the Dead Terrorist?
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Old 2012-09-14, 11:17   Link #23562
AnimeFan188
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aohige View Post
Morality is, when it comes down to it, a fabricated standards of keeping a healthy functioning society.
That reminded me of this Dilbert strip:

http://dilbert.com/strips/comic/2012-09-14/
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Old 2012-09-14, 11:24   Link #23563
Jinto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aohige View Post
Morality is, when it comes down to it, a fabricated standards of keeping a healthy functioning society.
Only problem would be the fact there are so many societies with different standards, making "expert in morality" a very hard job to accomplish, unless human society can globalize to a common standard.

...
I agree.

And to further erode the idea of an "expert in morality".. evolution needs a pool of diverse moralities to select upon. If there is only one "expert morality" it will turn into a "moral specialization". Specializations are more often than not dead ends in evolutionary processes. So its best to remain versataile and diverse. I admit that my analogy to natural evolution is a little bit adventurous, but I have no doubt that humanity in total order is the best seed for chaos, while a more chaotic humanity results in a natural partial-order (this is just my gut feeling speaking though).
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Old 2012-09-14, 11:26   Link #23564
ganbaru
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Originally Posted by AnimeFan188 View Post
That reminded me of this Dilbert strip:

http://dilbert.com/strips/comic/2012-09-14/
And morality could be said to be the reciprocity, if the rich are also the one than hold the power
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Old 2012-09-14, 11:30   Link #23565
Urzu 7
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The idea of becoming a "moral expert" doesn't really allow for differing views and beliefs. If we had these "moral experts" and they tried to tell all others to fall into line with them, how is it all that different from religious people preaching their beliefs to others?
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Old 2012-09-14, 11:33   Link #23566
aohige
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It isn't in context.
The difference would be, following willix's example, one would be originated from mythical faith, whereas the other would be founded on logic and science.

As long as the latter understands that it's a tangible, ever-changing concept, it'd probably work better than the former.
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Old 2012-09-14, 11:40   Link #23567
Sumeragi
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I believe that ultimately, the belief in "logic and science" when it comes to ethics is just sophism which sets out to justify what has as much basis as religions. There is no fundamental differences in ethics, and by extension religion.
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Old 2012-09-14, 11:55   Link #23568
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Well, end result may well be the same.
But at least, if done correctly, moral of logic and science would be based on the logical functionality of a society.

Of course that may lead to hive mentality and we all turn borgs.
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Old 2012-09-14, 11:56   Link #23569
Vexx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumeragi View Post
I believe that ultimately, the belief in "logic and science" when it comes to ethics is just sophism which sets out to justify what has as much basis as religions. There is no fundamental differences in ethics, and by extension religion.
Outside of the "golden rule" in all its forms (which appears to be an inherent genetic trait of socially cooperative species and appears in every sustainable religion), almost every other rule that comes from "revelation" or "divine guidance" suffers from very suspicious axioms or foundations. I, for example, think that *spirituality* is a very useful way of acknowledging the non-rational (maybe that's a better word than ir-rational for parts of the discussion), but that far too much of the structure/doctrine of *religion* is more based on power and control of others rather than enlightenment.

But I'll have to dispute the idea that "logic and science" is just as weak as religion when it is examined under a spotlight of critical analysis. When some of the justification for the doctrines amount to "because I say so" or "invisible beings told me" versus "I ran an experiment on this a thousand times and got results my hypothesis predicted" - that's a fundamental difference.
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:02   Link #23570
DonQuigleone
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Morality comes from the human brain, and is what binds communities together, and helps them work together rather then greedily killing one another.

I think that on most basic matters of morality, most people are pretty good judges. EG I don't think anyone would say you should kill a little girl in order to steal her candy.

It's when things get more complex that it becomes more murky, and you need philosophy and reason to figure it out. For instance, is it just to steal to feed your starving children? Is it unjust for a group to commit infanticide knowing that keeping the baby will jeopardize the existence of the entire group (as they know they lack the means to feed it as it grows older)? All the legal disputes you have going on today are between differing competing systems of morality, and also due to grey areas that have never been fully reasoned out. For instance, can you own an idea? Certain IT companies seem to think you can....
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:02   Link #23571
Terrestrial Dream
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
But I'll have to dispute the idea that "logic and science" is just as weak as religion when it is examined under a spotlight of critical analysis. When some of the justification for the doctrines amount to "because I say so" or "invisible beings told me" versus "I ran an experiment on this a thousand times and got results my hypothesis predicted" - that's a fundamental difference.
But for a common people would not conduct and experiment or examination in justifying things. Instead they would base their justification on simple things like Wikipedia, single video on Youtube, or a fake scientist on TV.
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:09   Link #23572
SaintessHeart
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Originally Posted by aohige View Post
Well, end result may well be the same.
But at least, if done correctly, moral of logic and science would be based on the logical functionality of a society.
One serious flaw about the "scientifically logical" functionality of a society tends to be a little minced, i.e "I have a problem, therefore your problem is less important than mine". It often leads to some sort of social divide where there is one bunch of nuts who think that offering a job to a handicapped person (mentally or physically) is tantamount to a pay reduction and increased cost of hiring, and another bunch of carebears who straight out protest against the gassing of these individuals who have no other opportunity other than acting as "freeloaders".

There is no such thing as morality anymore - it has become a cliche much like common sense (which degraded into common nonsense.........Aristotle is rolling in his grave right now) and customer service (which involves tricking the poor consumer into thinking that he already got what he paid for).

Corporate culture mirrors social culture in a way that "logic" seems to be "pandering to personal desires", but then again, who do we blame? Capitalism?
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:20   Link #23573
willx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Terrestrial Dream View Post
But for a common people would not conduct and experiment or examination in justifying things. Instead they would base their justification on simple things like Wikipedia, single video on Youtube, or a fake scientist on TV.
^ And thus the idea of "moral experts" -- the point by Sam Harris was that, simplistically, some people don't add value to the debate.

Ultimately, I agree with Vexx and understand that any idea of "morality" and "moral progress" is inherently bound to the idea of a social contract. It's not quite so pure and simple like Kant's categorical imperative.

That being said, I believe that the frontier of discovering the best ways (methods, structures and techniques, if you will) in which humankind can come together and understand each other and cooperate is constantly shifting. However, even if there is "progress" on the frontier, it doesn't necessarily mean that this information is being disseminated to the whole of our societies. Thus, education plays an integral role, as even if things COULD be calculated and proven to be better.. it may not be accepted by the majority of society as they simply don't know the facts.

An interesting anecdote is Singapore, which one of my gay friends mentioned to me, is a very small country that is autocratic and conservative but governed by an extremely rational (if not coldly logical) government is very hypocritical on the issue of homosexuality. Why? Because being against it appeals to the conversative and religious bent .. BUT it brings in tourism dollars and cents and according to various studies, innovation. So slowly, very slowly, VERY VERY SLOWLY .. tolerance builds -- because it makes economic "cents"
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:32   Link #23574
Sumeragi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aohige View Post
Well, end result may well be the same.
But at least, if done correctly, moral of logic and science would be based on the logical functionality of a society.

Of course that may lead to hive mentality and we all turn borgs.
Society is by no means a purely logical nor functional. It is based on humans which by themselves are not purely logical nor functional, nor is ethics and morality for that matter. Thus, moral of logic and science being "done correctly" is a crackpot idea that has no logical basis to it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
But I'll have to dispute the idea that "logic and science" is just as weak as religion when it is examined under a spotlight of critical analysis. When some of the justification for the doctrines amount to "because I say so" or "invisible beings told me" versus "I ran an experiment on this a thousand times and got results my hypothesis predicted" - that's a fundamental difference.
And how does experiments connect to ethics and morality?


In the end, everyone is engaged in sophism: The notion that only religion or "science" is the correct path of a ethical or moral society is in itself a fundamentally flawed idea which both sides are not willing to admit. Morality/ethics is a social construction which is based on what what society is, which cannot be purely religious or scientific. To argue that there is one correct path is simple BS.
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:35   Link #23575
SaintessHeart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumeragi View Post
In the end, everyone is engaged in sophism: The notion that only religion or "science" is the correct path of a ethical or moral society is in itself a fundamentally flawed idea which both sides are not willing to admit. Morality/ethics is a social construction which is based on what what society is, which cannot be purely religious or scientific. To argue that there is one correct path is simple BS.
Well, we could always mix both of them and get Scientology. [/sarcasm]
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:38   Link #23576
Sumeragi
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Originally Posted by willx View Post
My only issue with this is that taken a certain way, this could potentially lead to acceptance of all differences as pure "cultural relativism" and lead to a lack of acceptance of any sort of developing "moral progress"
It can be done as such if taken to extremes, but then ironically, this is where morality comes into play. Cultural relativism is restrained by the limits of ethics and morality, although that leads to a separate problem of "what is ethics or morality?", which I have to say is based on the various forms of the Golden Rule.
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:45   Link #23577
aohige
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumeragi View Post
Society is by no means a purely logical nor functional. It is based on humans which by themselves are not purely logical nor functional, nor is ethics and morality for that matter. Thus, moral of logic and science being "done correctly" is a crackpot idea that has no logical basis to it.
You're talking about reality.

We're basing this off the proposed utopia where science and logic "took us there".
If such thing was possible, and humans can all work for a social future, then these concepts may come in play.

It's not too far from Roddenberry vision.

Basically, all the hurdles you mention has to be overcome by human race as a whole, before submitting social functions to science and logic.
We're not really discussing HOW we can achieve that, just if it is theoretically possible and what the outcome of it would be.
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:47   Link #23578
Sumeragi
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Some people use the notion of the utopia and crack down on what happens in reality. Something that truly bugs me.
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Old 2012-09-14, 12:54   Link #23579
willx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumeragi View Post
Some people use the notion of the utopia and crack down on what happens in reality. Something that truly bugs me.
Reminds me of the saying "Perfection is the enemy of good[-enough]" (yes the square bracketed portion is mine )

Of course as any rational and reasonable person I agree, you cannot lose sight of reality and simply make decisions based on what would be true in an "ideal" world. Simultaneously though, you cannot lose sight of what series of events, decisions and outcomes would otherwise lead to an "ideal" situation. Shoot for the moon!

Ultimately, we're not so much talking in circles, rather most of us here are "great people" and we all largely agree but chafe around the edges a bit around definitions and bump up against each other on the degree of our "optimism/pessimism/realism" which as a whole is a good thing!
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Old 2012-09-14, 13:01   Link #23580
aohige
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumeragi View Post
Some people use the notion of the utopia and crack down on what happens in reality. Something that truly bugs me.
willx brought the subject on table as a thought food, we're not at all talking about realistic implications or even application.
More of a philosophical question of how it would play out, if it would work, and what difference it would be to the alternative.
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