Objective morality

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Metacrock
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Re: Objective morality

Post by Metacrock » Mon Nov 12, 2012 6:57 am

Robin if I am right about where I see you going with it, are you trying to say that self interest is not based upon value system? Of course it is. I still don't see where you derive an ought. I mean at least one that would not relative in comparison with other values systems.
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Re: Objective morality

Post by Robin Yergenson » Sun Nov 18, 2012 3:35 pm

Hi Metacrock,

I had said to met,
The question that we’re wrestling with isn’t about whether being rational in order to discover moral actions is easy or hard. The question is, what gives rise to morality? Is it the volitional being’s objective values and benefits as defined by reality that we discover and align to (whether hard or easy), or is it something else?
You say,
Robin, if I am right about where I see you going with it, are you trying to say that self interest is not based upon a value system? Of course it is. I still don't see where you derive an ought. I mean at least one that would not be relative in comparison with other values systems.
To your first question, of course self interest is based on values. That’s why I raised the rhetorical question “… what gives rise to morality? Is it the volitional being’s objective values and benefits as defined by reality that we discover and align to (whether hard or easy), or is it something else?” It is only because:

1. Objective benefits with respect to me do exist and are good for me as defined by reality itself (i.e. they are not whim-based), and
2. That as an organism, I want goodness and not harm, that
3. In order to obtain the goodness that I want, I ought to act in ways that obtain it and I ought not act in ways that do not.

The first two statements are factual is-es. Factual statement number 3 derives oughts from the prior two.

And now a comment on "value system." The value system that is relevant here is the one rooted in reality itself. They are the things that are of objective benefit to me and that I grasp as being such. The term “system” is necessary because it is also important to recognize a hierarchical order in those values so that I don’t pursue a lesser value at the expense of a greater value.

Rob

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met
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Re: Objective morality

Post by met » Sun Nov 18, 2012 5:45 pm

I'm still feeling a little confused, Rob. Here's another question - what about the problem of death? Does the fact that as human organisms we are aware of our finiteness, the actual - on any truly objective scale - minuteness of our existence as organisms? (And this is true from any rational and observable perspective.) What about our own always-impending extinctions? How does/should that kind of knowledge (which we, as humans, alone among the all the world's species have the privilege of bearing) affect what is 'factual and good' for us, as organisms?

"Wanting good and not harm" for ourselves is to be understood in only purely visible and measurable organism-ic terms? What about extending our existences, somehow, beyond our puny, almost irrelevant on a universal scale, lifespans? Or at least coming to terms, somehow, with the facts of our actual minuteness?

These are modes of the essential spiritual-existential questions, obviously, and they have no 'factual' answers. So do they have a place - play a role - in your understanding of morality?
The “One” is the space of the “world” of the tick, but also the “pinch” of the lobster, or that rendezvous in person to confirm online pictures (with a new lover or an old God). This is the machinery operative...as “onto-theology."
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Re: Objective morality

Post by runamokmonk » Sun Nov 18, 2012 6:19 pm

Is MLK immoral? Mistaken?

I bring this up, again, because it plainly shows a hierarchy of values. Shows he is aware of threats. Says, like anyone else, prefers a long life. But chooses God's will, love.
And then I got to Memphis. And some began to say the threats, or talk about the threats that were out. What would happen to me from some of our sick white brothers? Well, I don't know what will happen now. We've got some difficult days ahead. But it doesn't really matter with me now. Because I've been to the mountaintop. I don't mind. Like anybody, I would like to live - a long life; longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over. And I've seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land. So I'm happy, tonight. I'm not worried about anything. I'm not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.

Also, it could be argued that MLK was the one who was most truly alive in this, even if it was to his physical detriment.

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Re: Objective morality

Post by Metacrock » Tue Nov 20, 2012 2:58 pm

runamokmonk wrote:Is MLK immoral? Mistaken?

I bring this up, again, because it plainly shows a hierarchy of values. Shows he is aware of threats. Says, like anyone else, prefers a long life. But chooses God's will, love.
And then I got to Memphis. And some began to say the threats, or talk about the threats that were out. What would happen to me from some of our sick white brothers? Well, I don't know what will happen now. We've got some difficult days ahead. But it doesn't really matter with me now. Because I've been to the mountaintop. I don't mind. Like anybody, I would like to live - a long life; longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over. And I've seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land. So I'm happy, tonight. I'm not worried about anything. I'm not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.

Also, it could be argued that MLK was the one who was most truly alive in this, even if it was to his physical detriment.
I like your thinknig Runamuck
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Robin Yergenson
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Re: Objective morality

Post by Robin Yergenson » Wed Nov 21, 2012 8:07 pm

Hi met,

You say,
I'm still feeling a little confused, Rob. Here's another question - what about the problem of death? Does the fact that as human organisms we are aware of our finiteness, the actual - on any truly objective scale - minuteness of our existence as organisms? (And this is true from any rational and observable perspective.) What about our own always-impending extinctions? How does/should that kind of knowledge (which we, as humans, alone among the all the world's species have the privilege of bearing) affect what is 'factual and good' for us, as organisms?

"Wanting good and not harm" for ourselves is to be understood in only purely visible and measurable organism-ic terms? What about extending our existences, somehow, beyond our puny, almost irrelevant on a universal scale, lifespans? Or at least coming to terms, somehow, with the facts of our actual minuteness?

These are modes of the essential spiritual-existential questions, obviously, and they have no 'factual' answers. So do they have a place - play a role - in your understanding of morality?
It is a fact that we exist. Every moment of our existence involves change from one thing to another. Ex nihilo nihil fit (from nothing, nothing comes) is also a fact. It’s corollary, that something cannot come from nothing or become nothing, is also a fact. Time and change are something and not nothing, and so have always and will always exist. And it follows that the stuff that we are of has always and will always exist. Given an infinite number of opportunities to occur, an event of a general type that can occur will occur an infinite number of times. Becoming a conscious being happens for each of us an infinite number of times. This is true whether physical stuff is fundamental, or conscious stuff is fundamental (since everything that we perceive and can say anything about is mediated by conscious stuff, we are unable to answer this). The former (where physical stuff is fundamental) may take an astronomically long time between conscious states, but when measured in terms of relevance to the conscious subject, those unconscious forms of existence are completely irrelevant. I’m not stating some new age weirdness, I’m just moving from one logically necessary condition to the next. But while eternal existence is nice to realize, it does not say much about morality. Each discrete life seems to provide the context and boundary of what we can act to effect.

That probably went by a bit fast, but think it through and ask away…

Rob

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Re: Objective morality

Post by Robin Yergenson » Wed Nov 21, 2012 8:34 pm

Hi ruamokmonk,

You ask,
Is MLK immoral? Mistaken?

We’ve discussed this before, but let’s do it again. We hop out into fast moving traffic to go to work every day. It’s a risk that could cost us our life, but the risk is justified given the opportunity that we have to be productive and exchange value for value. If we had foreknowledge that we would be hit head on and die, it would be immoral of us to go to work at that time. MLK was in a position to gain something much greater than we typically do on a given day, the satisfaction of hugely effecting the awareness of equality among men. He faced even more risk that we do as we fight traffic, but the risk/reward was justified. If he had foreknowledge that he would be assassinated on a given day, it would be have been immoral of him to put himself in harm’s way at that time, but he didn’t, so no, MLK was not immoral nor mistaken.

Rob

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Re: Objective morality

Post by Metacrock » Sat Nov 24, 2012 7:59 am

Robin you never got past the ought sauce comment that Fleet made. You are still just trying to treat a set of values as though they are facts based upon behavior. that doesn't work. It's in vogue in moral philosophy circles ala realism. I think that's the Rand influence and they are just mixed up.
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Re: Objective morality

Post by Robin Yergenson » Sun Nov 25, 2012 10:34 pm

Metacrock, you say,
Robin you never got past the ought sauce comment that Fleet made. You are still just trying to treat a set of values as though they are facts based upon behavior. that doesn't work. It's in vogue in moral philosophy circles ala realism. I think that's the Rand influence and they are just mixed up.
And you are willfully evading the argument with comments about "ought sauce" silliness. Hope that works for you.

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Re: Objective morality

Post by met » Mon Nov 26, 2012 1:31 am

There's a number of different arguments here with you, Rob, I think....

- Meta says you are trying to "treat a set of values as if they are facts."

- I seem to disagree with you on metaphysical questions. ( You seem to feel that our metaphysical natures can be inferred from logic & I disagree, feeling that nothing metaphysical can be deduced by our brains since there is no logical reason for anything metaphysical to be comprehensible to our intellects, which are, after all, from any rational perspective, merely part of our survival equipment as 'organisms." )

- runamok seems to have trouble understanding how the actions of a figure like MLK can be understood in terms of 'self-interest." Here, I tend to agree.
Robin Yergenson wrote: .... the satisfaction of hugely effecting the awareness of equality among men.
Something that extends beyond self-interest already seems implicit in that 'satisfaction' to me. Also implicit in your acknowledgment that MLK had an opportunity to achieve "something much greater than we typically do on a given day." Isn't that 'something,' something that extends beyond his own mere self-interests? How, then, can that motivation really be termed "self-interested" and, if it lacks real self-interest, isn't that contradictory with your basic principles (as stated)?

Is that like arguing, eg, that some old man in a park somewhere is not being altruistic when he feeds the birds his breadcrumbs, since feeding them gives him personal "satisfaction" (at some level). But would the old man receive any satisfaction unless he had real compassion for the birds? Isn't caring about the birds still at the heart of his actions? Why otherwise, if he is not motivated for concern with the birds, would he care, why would he feel anything at all ?

Does the old man feed the birds to make his ego feel as if it had altruism, to feel that somehow his 'self' can be extended beyond its own puny boundaries? Is that how you would interpret such actions?

If so, is that like the case with MLK? (i think you need to explicate this some more...)
The “One” is the space of the “world” of the tick, but also the “pinch” of the lobster, or that rendezvous in person to confirm online pictures (with a new lover or an old God). This is the machinery operative...as “onto-theology."
Dr Ward Blanton

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