Eloise

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Eloise

  Eloise, your quite brilliant aren't you.  I haven't been able to find any posts of you describing what your belief system is.  I see you have over 1500 posts and so I'm sure you've done this before, but if you wouldn't mind.  Do you belong to any particualr religion, or is their a holy book you believe to be devinely inspired by a diety?  I respect your posts very much, and I see you are thiest, I was just wondering what that meant for you.  Do you just believe the universe was created and thats it, or is their more to it than that for you.  From the logic in your posts I would assume your are a rational theist (someone who believes the universe was created, but doesn't claim to know anything with certainty about this creator.)

 

Just curious... 


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BobSpence1 wrote:Hmm, this

BobSpence1 wrote:

Hmm, this makes me think of the ability I feel I have trained myself in, or perhaps an inherent 'skill' I have tried to enhance, to have a part of my consciousness monitoring my perceptions to flag any indication that there is a gap, or something 'odd', in the stream of sensory data and its default interpretation of it by the 'normal' brain processes. I can recall many cases where this has allowed me to re-analyse the 'raw' data while it is still in my short-term memory, or at least try to commit to longer term memory something closer to the 'raw' data.

I can't really prove it, but I think this makes me less susceptible to the errors that occur when we observe or experience something unfamiliar and seriously mis-interpret it, resulting in us retaining a seriously inaccurate memory of the event. I can remember, in general terms, instances where my memory of some unusual event I and a companion have both just observed differs from theirs in just the way that would be expected if they had made the 'classic' error, and I had caught myself in time to avoid falling into it.

What so often seems to happen is that the brain is continually trying to find the best match between the elements of what we 'see' with what the 'library' of basic objects we have accumulated in our memory. Even when there is no good match, a 'best fit' is found and becomes what we remember as having witnessed, even if it really has only the most superficial resemblance to what was actually seen.

I base my 'training' of this sense on trying to seriously 'take on board' any accounts I come across from scientists studying the various ways our brains can seriously mis-interpret the sensory data, the sort of errors we are prone to, including tending to see what we 'expect' to see.

I see the lack of this ability in most people accounts for many reports of 'paranormal' events, from UFO sightings to reports of 'psychic' phenomena.

I am curious how Eloise would understand this - does it seem to match in any way to her modified perceptions of the details of life experience, or is it entirely different? 

 

 

It's not entirely different, I don't think, Bob. I may have been talking about something which is more personal than what you're suggesting but then you've really given me no reason to believe that your perceptions have no personal significance to you, so I would be just assuming that.

So I guess the next question is how directly is what you uncover by this exercise you do relevant to your mental commentary (ie. the 'story' of your life). If very directly, then yes, we're probably both considering the same phenomenon from our own angles.

 

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Blake wrote:Eloise wrote:The

Blake wrote:



Eloise wrote:



The only fair thing to say then, Blake, is that you haven't grasped my belief system yet. Or you would see utilitarianism is a consistent authority with it.



 



I didn't say anything about utilitarianism being inconsistent with your belief system.  I pointed out that you are wrong that modern safety procedures are utilitarian.



 



Modern safety procedures ARE NOT utilitarian.




Your view that they are is incorrect- there's a lengthy history of progressive reforms based on the "silly" idea that life is valuable for its own sake and should be preserved that created them.





Blake, that's the history of what spurred safety precautions as social norms. It's not the be all and end of their implications. As I have said over and over again in reply already, the historical basis is not relevant. Personal safety is a utilitarian end consistent with my beliefs entirely of itself, not it's historical justification nor of any reasons anyone else might support it. Understand?





 



 

Blake wrote:



Eloise wrote:
And I absolutely do not harbour hostility or indifference to personal values, I consider them indispensable to the abundance of life.



 



You said, paraphrasing imperfectly perhaps (but I don't want to go quote digging), that attempting to extend life is futile and silly (among something else).





You mean this:


Eloise wrote:


In a nutshell I believe active attempts to resist the natural cycles of destruction and rebirth which characterise our world are silly and futile, this life traverses time and space, that's just how it is and what we are, death can not be inherently bad since absolutely all life is totally dependent on its existence, everything that lives does so because something else dies.





I don't see taking safety precautions as resistance to natural cycles of life and death, granted I can understand why you might presume that I do, but I don't.



Safety precautions enable us to push boundaries successfully, I don't see it as avoiding death so much as I see it as angling for achievement.



I would concede there's probably a fine line run between fear and ambition on this matter, but my beliefs are very consistent with ambition, and so thus with the concept of taking risks with forethought of success.


 



Blake wrote:


 This demonstrates clear disrespect for that value- that's where the whole safety thing came in.




I don't seek to disrespect the political value placed on human life, I simply have other values which address the same ends.



Blake wrote:


You expressed a fundamental value of your system of it being, essentially, stupid to try to hold out in one state of consciousness because others are of essentially equal value (or at least distinct but not lesser).




Depends on how you define "holding out in one state of consciousness". Ultimately, I believe, our consciousness is equipped to move on to different directions and ambitions, however we have humanity here and now and that's plenty of reason to make everything possible of it, and for as long as possible if you so imagine.



Finally, I originally said the above-quoted in the context of explaining my beliefs in the light of animal slaughter for meat, so, for the record, by resistance I was more strictly referring to the idea that we might need to abolish all possibility of having our human hands in bringing death to anything in order to be "good".



My reply is that death can not be inherently "bad" because life is tied inextricably to it, we cannot extract biology from the substrate of its existence.  It is what it is.  But you may note that I continued to say we have personal values affecting things like slaughter for meat, they are important, they drive us in the attempt to idealise our collective experience, I see no better reason to value them than that.




 



Blake wrote:


 



"all things are valuable"



You mean that objectively, based on the universal consciousness, right?  If not, then I did misunderstand.  If so, then I had it right.



 



I explained how I meant it, Blake. Existence "feeds" off other existence so everything has value to us since an iota moved could be the difference between this we are now, and something else completely in our place.



Blake wrote:


Everything in your perspective has objective value, with nothing necessarily having less or more than anything else (as per my suggestion of death, and rocks).




By same, I mean the same in reference to this objective value-- which you have, by your earlier assertion of the "silliness" of trying to preserve one's life, placed far above and beyond- in a different league entirely from- subjective values.




Where you have missed me is in thinking that I have placed objective value above subjective value in my belief system. I have not said that - and I would not, for that matter.



So I reiterate, personal values are the beating heart of our existence, far from being unimportant, they are indispensable - without them there would be no humanity to experience.




 

Blake wrote:



If you've changed your mind (you seem to be singing a bit different a tune now), and if subjective values now trump these absolute ones, then what's the use of them at all if they can simply be ignored?





I told you the use of them. They are the source of the experience which is humanity.



But, for the record, I am not saying that personal values trump objective value either.



In the concrete experience subjective values absolutely matter in that they are elementary to the existence of a humanity, and everything is valuable inasmuch as subjective value depends on it for existence.






Blake wrote:



NMCP said that all rational people agree on certain moral values.  I was explaining to him that morality is a matter of opinion, and equally rational people can have different opinions on the subject.



That is, rationality is more objective than all that, and doesn't force a certain subset of subjective ethics that correspond to it.



 



Well that really didn't come across at all - in your scathing of drunkards and their enablers, for example.  I believe you even put NMCP in the enabler camp at one stage with some remark about 'not caring for the welfare of children', was it?



It sounded more personal than you are portraying it now. That's all.

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 Blake wrote: NMCP said



 

Blake wrote:



 

NMCP said that all rational people agree on certain moral values. 
 


 

I'm going to leave you 2 to it but I can't stand being misquoted.  I said "MOST" not all rational people, usuaslly  followed by "in my experience" can come to some agreement on basic moral values.    


 

 


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NoMoreCrazyPeople wrote:I'm

NoMoreCrazyPeople wrote:

I'm going to leave you 2 to it but I can't stand being misquoted.  I said "MOST" not all rational people, usuaslly  followed by "in my experience" can come to some agreement on basic moral values.

 

I'm sorry if you feel I mis-paraphrased you; I somewhat disagree.

This is why:

 

Yes, there were more weasel words in your version.  Enough weasel words, in fact, that there was virtually nothing left there to attack-- nothing to constitute substance of a real attack from you, even.

However, you made a point of attacking my position using this gelatinous non-argument anyway- the spirit behind it was obvious accusation. 

 

Instead of paraphrasing the initial gumming you gave me, I paraphrased the teeth that would have been in those gums- and were obviously intended given your resolve that you could not 'accept' my position.

Perhaps I lost the wrong weasel word?

Tell me then: On what basis can you not accept my comparison?

 

Because if it's really just your opinion that you don't think the position Eloise put forth was as bad as Osama's, why didn't you just leave it at that, without all of the wishy-washy lamentations about 'rational people'?


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Have fun you too.

Have fun you too.


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Eloise wrote:Blake, that's

Eloise wrote:
Blake, that's the history of what spurred safety precautions as social norms. It's not the be all and end of their implications.

 

There could be other reasons, sure, in some alternate realities.  Perhaps death in the work place causes ghosts which inhibit productivity, in some bizarro-land.  If you maintain this, then I will accept your assessment that- in your world view- it is utilitarian.

In our reality, here on Earth, however, that is not the case.

 

Quote:
As I have said over and over again in reply already, the historical basis is not relevant.

 

It is solid evidence of a non-utilitarian motivation.  You are lacking in any evidence for a utilitarian one.

 

Quote:
Personal safety is a utilitarian end consistent with my beliefs entirely of itself, not it's historical justification nor of any reasons anyone else might support it. Understand?

 

I understood and continue to understand that you are under the delusion that modern personal safety standards are utilitarian.  Your delusion doesn't change the fact that they aren't.

Your delusion that they are is only as much to the point as a young Earth creationists' delusion that fossil records are caused by the flood- a misunderstanding of facts, tailored to your whim, can certainly be consistent with bunk beliefs.  The facts as they stand, though?  Not so much.

 

 

Quote:
I don't see taking safety precautions as resistance to natural cycles of life and death, granted I can understand why you might presume that I do, but I don't.

 

Even if they are obviously not utilitarian (perhaps to a degree that you can even see) like risking millions of dollars of machinery diffusing a bomb when a quickly trained orphan- or hell, even a late term cancer victim- could do the job better with no financial risk?

 

It's not the safety precautions themselves- but the idea that one is putting work or resources into them beyond utilitarian necessity.  The same with treating certain diseases.  These sentiments (especially when counter-utilitarian) are driven by that resistance.

 

Eloise wrote:
Safety precautions enable us to push boundaries successfully, I don't see it as avoiding death so much as I see it as angling for achievement.

 

You are seeing it incorrectly.  While it is utility to preserve great minds and skill, there are quite a few things that could be done better or more efficiently with casual disregard for human life-- things that would enable faster progress.

 

Eloise wrote:
I would concede there's probably a fine line run between fear and ambition on this matter, but my beliefs are very consistent with ambition, and so thus with the concept of taking risks with forethought of success.

 

Where fear inhibits ambition, would you not consider it silly?  Is this silliness just *your* opinion, or is it based on the universe's opinion (its objective values) as you have implied?

 

Eloise wrote:

I don't seek to disrespect the political value placed on human life, I simply have other values which address the same ends.

 

I know what you've been saying here, but they simply do not achieve the same ends.  There may be some very rare overlap, but this is drastically different from what we understand today, and your views would entail a drastically different (and from some perspectives horrific) social ethic.


Eloise wrote:

Where you have missed me is in thinking that I have placed objective value above subjective value in my belief system. I have not said that - and I would not, for that matter.

But, for the record, I am not saying that personal values trump objective value either.

 

This is illogical.  If you are setting two potentially contrasting things on equal footing (such that one can not negate the other), you simply can't equivocate them as both being values and sources of 'shoulds'.

 

Quote:
I told you the use of them. They are the source of the experience which is humanity.

 

Perhaps you are mis-defining these things, and you mean not to imply that what you call these universal objective values are values, but that they are properties independent of value.  That they are not, objectively, a source of should.

You *did* imply that these "objective values" created shoulds, and pretty strongly, but perhaps this was a mist-step?

 

 

Eloise wrote:

It sounded more personal than you are portraying it now. That's all.

 

I can understand how you might have mistaken it if you didn't follow the prefacing argument carefully.


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It comes down to

It comes down to this:

 

Blake wrote:

Eloise wrote:
Safety precautions enable us to push boundaries successfully, I don't see it as avoiding death so much as I see it as angling for achievement.

 

You are seeing it incorrectly.  While it is utility to preserve great minds and skill, there are quite a few things that could be done better or more efficiently with casual disregard for human life-- things that would enable faster progress.

 

I don't think I am seeing it incorrectly at all. Sending terminally ill people in to do a dangerous job is not, on balance, the utilitarian ideal.

Its not necessary for utilitarianism to conform to financial capitalist ideals, they're just one set of personal values that you think might bear considering and its quite arbitrary, on the whole, that you believe those values will dictate the best, most universally rewarding outcome from the endeavour - moreover there's plenty of evidence to the contrary of that thinking, material riches don't make everything rosy, you know.

 

Blake wrote:

Where fear inhibits ambition, would you not consider it silly? 

 

Indeed I would. But I believe it bears mentioning my use of the word 'silly' isn't meant to connote quite the seriousness you're reading from it.

Blake wrote:

Is this silliness just *your* opinion, or is it based on the universe's opinion (its objective values) as you have implied?

 

It's just silliness, you know, larking, activity lacking in potency. Nothing more.

 

Blake wrote:

I know what you've been saying here, but they simply do not achieve the same ends.  There may be some very rare overlap, but this is drastically different from what we understand today, and your views would entail a drastically different (and from some perspectives horrific) social ethic.

Of course it is different from what is believed to be understood about the human condition, it isn't based on the same beliefs.

I don't know about it bearing a 'horrific' social ethic, though, I think you've proved in several places in this thread you're a bit of the sucker for slippery slope/ misleading vividness arguments, I'm putting it down to that.

 

 

Blake wrote:

Eloise wrote:

Where you have missed me is in thinking that I have placed objective value above subjective value in my belief system. I have not said that - and I would not, for that matter.

But, for the record, I am not saying that personal values trump objective value either.

 

This is illogical.  If you are setting two potentially contrasting things on equal footing (such that one can not negate the other), you simply can't equivocate them as both being values and sources of 'shoulds'.

 

I'm not, my beliefs don't even ascribe to 'shoulds' at all. My point entirely is that the subjective and objective values are interdependent mappings to each other. There's no 'should' in the equation, but isn't that what bothers you about the implied social ethic of my beliefs? That they are not inclined to any basis for imposing shoulds?

 

Blake wrote:

You *did* imply that these "objective values" created shoulds, and pretty strongly, but perhaps this was a mist-step?

 

How did I? I believe I only said that they 'create' what is.

I'm fairly sure I've demonstrated that my beliefs imply nothing about what should be, and only lend themselves to reason why our personal 'shoulds' are not negated by their fundamental magnanimity.

 

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Eloise wrote:It comes down

Eloise wrote:

It comes down to this:

 

 

You believe truth can be obtained by just reading some woo-woo pseudo-scientific stuff and thinking about how you wish the universe worked rather than how it actually does.

Your social ethic is to give people stuff with no requirement they work, get an education in a needed field or limit the number of children they have.

As intelligent or well-read as Eloise may be, she has fallen for the world's oldest scam, the one all theists and spiritual people fall for:

Something for nothing, it never looses it's charm.

Taxation is the price we pay for failing to build a civilized society. The higher the tax level, the greater the failure. A centrally planned totalitarian state represents a complete defeat for the civilized world, while a totally voluntary society represents its ultimate success. --Mark Skousen


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Eloise wrote:Its not

Eloise wrote:

Its not necessary for utilitarianism to conform to financial capitalist ideals, they're just one set of personal values that you think might bear considering and its quite arbitrary, on the whole, that you believe those values will dictate the best, most universally rewarding outcome from the endeavour - moreover there's plenty of evidence to the contrary of that thinking, material riches don't make everything rosy, you know.

 

Utility is comparable to efficiency, and it's whatever best furthers the ends being sought (whether that is mining ore, or manufacturing something).  One can make arguments to the effect of game theory for improved efficiency. 

Within a normal, ethically neutral framework, one can even make arguments to the nature of humans to improve efficiency- that humans are frightened, and feeling safe, they can be more efficient.

However, compensation for a fundamental, universal mal-ethic would throw a bit of a wrench in the works there- therein the greater moral utility would be to abolish that mal-ethic, since it would be 'silly' to yield to it.

 

Eloise wrote:

Indeed I would. But I believe it bears mentioning my use of the word 'silly' isn't meant to connote quite the seriousness you're reading from it.

It's just silliness, you know, larking, activity lacking in potency. Nothing more.

 

You used it in response to a question meant to probe any elements of moral prescriptivism your beliefs entail- the question to which it was an answer implied that this 'silliness' is a universal mal-ethic.

 

Eloise wrote:

I don't know about it bearing a 'horrific' social ethic, though, I think you've proved in several places in this thread you're a bit of the sucker for slippery slope/ misleading vividness arguments, I'm putting it down to that.

 

Religion *is* a slippery slope- that's what it does.

Moral prescriptivism is dangerous.

 


Eloise wrote:

I'm not, my beliefs don't even ascribe to 'shoulds' at all. My point entirely is that the subjective and objective values are interdependent mappings to each other. There's no 'should' in the equation, but isn't that what bothers you about the implied social ethic of my beliefs? That they are not inclined to any basis for imposing shoulds?

 

No, what bothered me is that you answered affirmatively a question meant to determine 'shoulds'.  Perhaps there was a misunderstanding of the question as it was posed.  Your answer, regarding the silliness, was indicative of a 'people objectively should not be silly, and this is objectively silly'.

 

If your beliefs aren't morally prescriptive- if they don't dictate any universal 'shoulds' in human behavior, and are subordinate to the subjective- then they aren't as dangerous as you previously seemed to indicate (perhaps accidentally).

 

They remain stupid, and incorrect, as applications of pseudoscience- but socially dangerous-- not as much.

Now, a bit more in the domain of the flat-Earthers, and conspiracy theorists, and less in the domain of the Islamic extremists.

 

 

Eloise wrote:

How did I? I believe I only said that they 'create' what is.

 

When you answered a question to that effect.  I think it's one some EXC (or I may be scrambling that up) asked.

As usual, I'm disinclined to go hunting.

 

If you are now asserting that your beliefs in fact are not in the least bit prescriptive, then that is adequate in itself- so there's really no point in going back to find out where and in what precise what you may have misspoken, as that wouldn't likely have any affect on your current assertion.


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Blake wrote:Eloise wrote:Its

Blake wrote:

Moral prescriptivism is dangerous.

If you are now asserting that your beliefs in fact are not in the least bit prescriptive, then that is adequate in itself- so there's really no point in going back to find out where and in what precise what you may have misspoken, as that wouldn't likely have any affect on your current assertion.

Hmmm... now you seem to be changing your tune, Blake.

What ever happened to :

Blake wrote:

Her beliefs are codified rationalizations for apathy...

Thus my accusation of apathy, Eloise.  Eloise, because all things are the same to you, you ultimately DO default to hedonism....

.....all other things being the same to the point of fundamental apathy.

If evil alien overlords wanted to destroy human civilization by seeding us with the most pervasive apathy imaginable, they couldn't do much better than sending you, Eloise, as their emissary.

So what was the problem with my beliefs, again? Prescriptiveness or apathy?

Was I advocating the slippery slope to savage hedonism or the path to wildly vivid dogma induced catastrophe?

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Ahhh... so Exc, Blake,

Ahhh... so Exc, Blake, Eloise and a few others are all from Egh-strailia. Thx fer the info, mates!


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EXC wrote:Eloise wrote:It

EXC wrote:

Eloise wrote:

It comes down to this:

 

 

You believe truth can be obtained by just reading some woo-woo pseudo-scientific stuff and thinking about how you wish the universe worked rather than how it actually does.

Your social ethic is to give people stuff with no requirement they work, get an education in a needed field or limit the number of children they have.

It isn't necessary to require it, EXC. The only problem between us is that you believe the world goes to pot if we don't prescribe activity and choices to each other, and I believe the science that reveals interdependent biological communities are more likely to be hampered than helped by such prescriptions.

 

see also:

http://www.nytimes.com/1991/05/21/news/in-defense-of-the-hive-a-soldier-squad-lurks-among-the-honeybees.html?pagewanted=all

NYTimesReport wrote:

The identification of soldiers as a distinct group of workers, the researchers said, also may help solve a mystery of bee labor that has mystified observers for decades: the "lazy bee" phenomenon. Many bees spend large portions of their lives in apparent inactivity, they note.

"People who watch observation hives have long been puzzled that the expression 'busy as a bee' doesn't apply," Dr. Breed said. However, if many bees are primed for soldiering, serving as a defensive reserve that can be immediately mobilized, he said, they would give the appearance of inactivity when the hive was undisturbed.

There is also a possibility that bees who choose a military career might serve other functions in a colony, Dr. Breed said, perhaps like human military reservists who can be called up to provide disaster relief.

"A soldier class is not a bad concept, but these bees might have other jobs and spend most of their time waiting, ready to be told what to do," said Dr. Roger Morse of Cornell University, who praised the work behind the new finding.

"You can have a society where everyone has a job to do and does it, or another kind of society where some individuals are flexible and ready to go at a job when needed," he said. "If one approach has advantages over the other, we might find out by studying bees. If you want to understand sociology in this world, there is nothing like the honeybee."

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Kapkao wrote:Ahhh... so Exc,

Kapkao wrote:

Ahhh... so Exc, Blake, Eloise and a few others are all from Egh-strailia. Thx fer the info, mates!

Er ... If you mean Australia, that's me, Bob and AtheistExtremist. I'm pretty certain I've been previously told that EXC and Blake are from the US.

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mods:

you may kindly deletes the post just below this one; toothache - 3 extra strength analgesic tablets= no worries Smiling

“A meritocratic society is one in which inequalities of wealth and social position solely reflect the unequal distribution of merit or skills amongst human beings, or are based upon factors beyond human control, for example luck or chance. Such a society is socially just because individuals are judged not by their gender, the colour of their skin or their religion, but according to their talents and willingness to work, or on what Martin Luther King called 'the content of their character'. By extension, social equality is unjust because it treats unequal individuals equally.” "Political Ideologies" by Andrew Heywood (2003)


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Eloise wrote:Kapkao

Eloise wrote:

Kapkao wrote:

Ahhh... so Exc, Blake, Eloise and a few others are all from Egh-strailia. Thx fer the info, mates!

Er ... If you mean Australia, that's me, Bob and AtheistExtremist. I'm pretty certain I've been previously told that EXC and Blake are from the US.

i've has toothes aches... OW mtrfckin' OOOWWWW.

 

“A meritocratic society is one in which inequalities of wealth and social position solely reflect the unequal distribution of merit or skills amongst human beings, or are based upon factors beyond human control, for example luck or chance. Such a society is socially just because individuals are judged not by their gender, the colour of their skin or their religion, but according to their talents and willingness to work, or on what Martin Luther King called 'the content of their character'. By extension, social equality is unjust because it treats unequal individuals equally.” "Political Ideologies" by Andrew Heywood (2003)


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Kapkao wrote:Eloise

Kapkao wrote:

Eloise wrote:

Kapkao wrote:

Ahhh... so Exc, Blake, Eloise and a few others are all from Egh-strailia. Thx fer the info, mates!

Er ... If you mean Australia, that's me, Bob and AtheistExtremist. I'm pretty certain I've been previously told that EXC and Blake are from the US.

i've has toothes aches... OW mtrfckin' OOOWWWW.

 

can be so not sweet if it suits, Kapkao. Just ask Blake.. Sticking out tongue

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To whoever it was PM'd me,

To whoever it was PM'd me, sorry I have no access, can't read it.

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Eloise wrote:It isn't

Eloise wrote:

It isn't necessary to require it, EXC.

 

I know something for nothing, great fantasy.

Eloise wrote:

The only problem between us is that you believe the world goes to pot if we don't prescribe absolute choices to each other,

 

The world goes to pot if individuals don't have to pay a price for bad choices and don't receive a reward for good choices. You can't solve the shortage of doctors and nurses in the world and make health care affordable by saying study your ass off to be one but you end up the same as someone that does nothing.

 

Eloise wrote:

and I believe the science that reveals interdependent biological communities are more likely to be hampered than helped by such prescriptions.

 

Well what do you call having the taxman put a gun to people's head to take the wealth of people that worked for it? Isn't that a forced prescription that interferes with the natural process?

Do the 'lazy bees' have a small group of killer bees that threaten the worker bees if they don't go out and get honey to feed them? And aren't the 'lazy bees' required to sacrifice their lives in case of attack. The only good this analogy does is justify the need for a military spending in no way can it justify socialism without requirements.

One group subsidizing another for nothing in return does not exist in nature except as a parasite/host relationship. Yet that is your political/economic/social view of the world.

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Eloise wrote:To whoever it

Eloise wrote:

To whoever it was PM'd me, sorry I have no access, can't read it.

[lies]It was me asking if you'd be willing to give up Dingusdangus, in favor of me![/lies]

[shamful_self-deprecating_humor][/sham]

Actually, I wanted to know why you and Blake go at it so damn much... so, why do both of you do it?

 

 

“A meritocratic society is one in which inequalities of wealth and social position solely reflect the unequal distribution of merit or skills amongst human beings, or are based upon factors beyond human control, for example luck or chance. Such a society is socially just because individuals are judged not by their gender, the colour of their skin or their religion, but according to their talents and willingness to work, or on what Martin Luther King called 'the content of their character'. By extension, social equality is unjust because it treats unequal individuals equally.” "Political Ideologies" by Andrew Heywood (2003)


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Kapkao wrote:Actually, I

Kapkao wrote:

Actually, I wanted to know why you and Blake go at it so damn much... so, why do both of you do it?

 

 

Meh, this Blake thing is nothing. Backread some of the politics debates between EXC and myself - we have a beef that has extended over literally thousands of posts.

 

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Eloise wrote:So what was the

Eloise wrote:

So what was the problem with my beliefs, again? Prescriptiveness or apathy?

 

Precisely, what amounts to prescriptive apathy.  Not only may you not care, but you shouldn't care-- that is how the answers to the questions posed, and this whole 'universe consciousness, all things are valuable' came off.

 

Eloise wrote:
Was I advocating the slippery slope to savage hedonism or the path to wildly vivid dogma induced catastrophe?

 

Neither; I saw advocacy for the obliteration of subjective ethics; not by personal choice, but by an essential universal anti-ethic.  Due to innate and instinctual empathy and self preservation, there isn't any slippery slope to savage hedonism- it's a rather rare anomaly- but dogmatically reinforced hedonism could be something all together different.

There have been cults that have done this to a lesser degree- to my memory, every one I have studied has been essentially sociopathic.

 

This is why I compared it disfavorably to radical Islam.

 

 

The problem still remains in your word use (regarding values) and explanations, which strongly imply something that would seem to lead to these conclusions.

 

Atheism can not lead to such conclusions, because there is nothing considered as objective values, as consciousness doesn't exist outside of independent, emergent, minds.

 

Even if in practice people are permitted to arrive at their own arbitrary values, even in conflict with those 'of the universe', the suggestion that some universal consciousness holds certain values is dangerously close to prescriptivism- and when those values have an effect functionally identical to that of apathy or even antipathy, that's a potentially serious problem.


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Kapkao wrote:Actually, I

Kapkao wrote:

Actually, I wanted to know why you and Blake go at it so damn much... so, why do both of you do it?

 

For her part:  Eloise is convinced that I'm a fundamentalist Christian pretending to be an atheist who has come here to discredit the forum, because I disagree with her pseudoscience and refuse to dignify her with debate on the subject (which infuriates her).

For my part:  Eloise has a penchant for hysterical rage (note irrational accusations), and I like to poke hornets' nests.  I'll argue with just about anybody for the joy of composing creative compilations of condescension, but I won't always humor people with debate unless I consider them rational enough to rectify fallacious positions (debating is more effort than just condescending people).


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EXC wrote:Eloise wrote:The

EXC wrote:

Eloise wrote:

The only problem between us is that you believe the world goes to pot if we don't prescribe absolute choices to each other,

 

The world goes to pot if individuals don't have to pay a price for bad choices and don't receive a reward for good choices.

We've been over this point, a basic social justice for all does not have to come at the cost of rewarding individuals for significant contribution, that can easily be achieved. 

As for bad choices, the reality is we all pay a collective price for individual 'bad' choices, if we didn't then there would be no reason to call them bad and the point I have tried endlessly to get through too you is that mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices inherently entails alleviating the individual consequence. So unless you want us to consider it just fine for any given persons mistake to reverberate consequences through our societies that we all have to deal with, then you will agree that liberal benevolence is a small price to pay for a nice habitat.

Eloise wrote:

You can't solve the shortage of doctors and nurses in the world and make health care affordable by saying study your ass off to be one but you end up the same as someone that does nothing.

 

Besides my above comments, I also want to remind you of the sociology studies I cited to you which you seem to have forgotten. A greater sense of well-being translates directly into higher levels of individual motivation and studies of psychological factors in the workplace greatly indicate the consequence of social benevolence is far less idleness, not more or even the same amount as in its absence.

It is quite realistic and scientifically supported to suggest that an interdependent community built around the principle of universally available basic needs will include a constant, small and finite, ratio of non-contributors, of the flavour that you're concerned about, and be better off for it anyway.

EXC wrote:

Eloise wrote:

and I believe the science that reveals interdependent biological communities are more likely to be hampered than helped by such prescriptions.

 

Well what do you call having the taxman put a gun to people's head to take the wealth of people that worked for it? Isn't that a forced prescription that interferes with the natural process?

Yet again. Do you see me forcing anything?

The logic of this socialistic politic speaks brilliantly for itself, as I have said on numerous occasions, why would we need a gun when we can conclusively demonstrate that helping each other out is of direct benefit to ourselves. You can employ all sorts of misanthropic propaganda against it you like, the fact remains that social benevolence is our most powerful weapon against disease, crime and maladjustment and always will be.

 

 

EXC wrote:

 And aren't the 'lazy bees' required to sacrifice their lives in case of attack.

That is a theory which has been put to explaining why distinct numbers of bees just lay around most of the time when by all seeming accounts they should be contributing to building and production. It is plausible that they are reserving energy for defense of the hive, it is also suggested in that article that they might be on standby for other tasks. Regardless, in some cases this number in the bee population could go through life doing nothing at all and the point is it's not dragging down productivity.

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Blake wrote:Eloise wrote:So

Blake wrote:

Eloise wrote:

So what was the problem with my beliefs, again? Prescriptiveness or apathy?

 

Precisely, what amounts to prescriptive apathy.  Not only may you not care, but you shouldn't care-- that is how the answers to the questions posed, and this whole 'universe consciousness, all things are valuable' came off.

Prescribed apathy, huh? Well lets look at some of that apathy I prescribed shall we...

Eloise wrote:

... my beliefs do affect my attitude towards our taking life from other entities in order to sustain our own. Essentially the effect is indiscernible from basic humanitarianism ...

I am accepting of the fact that we kill for nourishment and simply qualify this acceptance with the belief that it should always be done with the deepest reverence and respect for the life that is being sacrificed. [ie] I believe in being thankful to the entities that have had their life laid down for the betterment of our own and that we serve ourselves best by showing it in practice.

And just for the record, this means I do not believe it is wrong or pointless to value the integrity of an animals identity moreso than that of a hunk of sandstone...

...since I don't fully understand existence beyond my present life and since what I do know is that it will not be this life, I seek to do the most with this that I can ...

So, this was telling you that I believe in a prescriptive apathy? Can you see how I might not believe you bothered even reading my posts before replying, Blake?

 

Blake wrote:

 I saw advocacy for the obliteration of subjective ethics; not by personal choice, but by an essential universal anti-ethic. 

I reckon this must be a cultural misunderstanding. To me, saying some manner of thing is impotent doesn't imply any universal anti-ethic its just a case of stating utility. I guess I just hail from a culture which takes minor aspersions much less seriously than yours.

 

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Blake wrote:Kapkao

Blake wrote:

Kapkao wrote:

Actually, I wanted to know why you and Blake go at it so damn much... so, why do both of you do it?

 

For her part:  Eloise is convinced that I'm a fundamentalist Christian pretending to be an atheist who has come here to discredit the forum, because I disagree with her pseudoscience and refuse to dignify her with debate on the subject (which infuriates her).

Haha, you're still exaggerating that one for your own self-congratulation, Blake. Good show.

Blake wrote:

For my part:  Eloise has a penchant for hysterical rage (note irrational accusations), and I like to poke hornets' nests.  I'll argue with just about anybody for the joy of composing creative compilations of condescension, but I won't always humor people with debate unless I consider them rational enough to rectify fallacious positions (debating is more effort than just condescending people).

Yes, just keep telling yourself that and you'll be convinced of your absolute intellectual superiority in no time...

Oh.. wait....

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mellestad wrote:So without

mellestad wrote:

So without this personal revelation, your beliefs would be unchanged?

Sorry Mellestad. I missed this before... Kapkao's fault with his bloody great gargantuan picture making that page a nightmare to load... (there you go Kapkao, I nice ugly complaint for you... want it giftwrapped?)

Anyhow, good point. I would have to admit that without the personal revelation I might not have come to forming my belief system at all. That's not to backpedal, though, my belief structure as it is today still is not based on personal revelation, however, it's place was more critical to the formation of said beliefs than to say I would definitely have them without it.

 

 

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iwbiek wrote:Eloise

iwbiek wrote:

Eloise wrote:

This body will die and the identity that goes with it... well... goes with it, so for a start I always have that to lose.

everything? 

Of course not, EK.

 

Iwbiek wrote:

including any insights or realizations you've had? 

I think the momentum of one's individuality maintains continuity (which would entail those things you've mentioned here). That's what Samsara means, and why it will go round and round while you are.

 

Iwbiek wrote:

is there some part of yourself you've "liberated" from samsara?

No doubt.

Iwbiek wrote:

  have you liberated yourself? 

I see some of that road, I suppose.

Iwbiek wrote:

aren't you liberated already?  aren't i?

Absolutely.... and we're both late to the party now, just why did noone tell me they already knew dammit.

 

Iwbiek wrote:

if you meet the buddha on the road, el, kill him.

If he doesn't kill me first, EK.

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Eloise wrote:So, this was

Eloise wrote:

So, this was telling you that I believe in a prescriptive apathy?

 

More the other part, but some parts of this- useless spiritual mumbo-jumbo layered atop effective apathy (and yes, I realize that you think "caring about all things" is different from apathy, but the practical result is essentially the same) is inconsequential. 

For the most part, you represented a useless superstition- in so far as you expressed any actual applied concern for anything, it is standard practice for a theist to be inconsistent.  I focused more on the dangers of what you were preaching.

If you have now decided that you are not preaching any kind of prescriptivism at all, though, then there's not really much to argue about (as you have long since demonstrated your inability to think critically when your pseudoscience is challenged).

 

Eloise wrote:
Haha, you're still exaggerating that one for your own self-congratulation, Blake. Good show.

 

It is what you said, and you have never recanted it- I have no reason to believe that you no longer hold to this conviction.  I'm not exaggerating anything- perhaps you just don't remember your ravings, because you were in a state of hysterical delirium?

 

Eloise wrote:
Yes, just keep telling yourself that and you'll be convinced of your absolute intellectual superiority in no time...

 

Don't flatter yourself.  In your case, Eloise, there's not much of an intellect to be superior to.

Yes, so I'm smarter than a potato- not much of an ego boost there.  I don't worry myself about these kinds of things.


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Eloise wrote:I think the

Eloise wrote:

I think the momentum of one's individuality maintains continuity (which would entail those things you've mentioned here). That's what Samsara means, and why it will go round and round while you are.

hmmmmm...i've never heard the term momentum used.  i might suggest that as a better, much less loaded term than "reincarnation" or "wheel of rebirth."  i'll have to ponder that for a while.  where the hell is my pipe...

Eloise wrote:

No doubt.

do tell, please.

Eloise wrote:

Absolutely.... and we're both late to the party now, just why did noone tell me they already knew dammit.

i beg to differ.  i've been there since at least 2003, when i wore my jeans with a hip flask of bushmill's in one back pocket and a chuang tzu paperback in the other.  after all these years of being perfectly content in the knowledge that nothing over, above, or other than those jeans and their contents existed, i'm about to go digging in the attic for them again.

Eloise wrote:

If he doesn't kill me first, EK.

kwatz!

 

btw, el, those of us who actually appreciate you as a person like hearing from you every now and again too... 

 

"I have never felt comfortable around people who talk about their feelings for Jesus, or any other deity for that matter, because they are usually none too bright. . . . Or maybe 'stupid' is a better way of saying it; but I have never seen much point in getting heavy with either stupid people or Jesus freaks, just as long as they don't bother me. In a world as weird and cruel as this one we have made for ourselves, I figure anybody who can find peace and personal happiness without ripping off somebody else deserves to be left alone. They will not inherit the earth, but then neither will I. . . . And I have learned to live, as it were, with the idea that I will never find peace and happiness, either. But as long as I know there's a pretty good chance I can get my hands on either one of them every once in a while, I do the best I can between high spots."
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Blake wrote:Eloise wrote:So,

Blake wrote:

Eloise wrote:

So, this was telling you that I believe in a prescriptive apathy?

 

More the other part, but some parts of this- useless spiritual mumbo-jumbo layered atop effective apathy (and yes, I realize that you think "caring about all things" is different from apathy, but the practical result is essentially the same) is inconsequential. 

 

For the most part, you represented a useless superstition- in so far as you expressed any actual applied concern for anything, it is standard practice for a theist to be inconsistent.  I focused more on the dangers of what you were preaching.

If you have now decided that you are not preaching any kind of prescriptivism at all, though, then there's not really much to argue about (as you have long since demonstrated your inability to think critically when your pseudoscience is challenged).

Blah blah, overgeneralise, assail character with vague criticisms, add a dash of hackneyed shibboleth to complete the bluff of credibility, avoid detail...

Voila! you are the legend of theist smackdown in your own lunchbox.... Claim victory.

 

 

 

Blake wrote:

Eloise wrote:
Haha, you're still exaggerating that one for your own self-congratulation, Blake. Good show.

 

It is what you said, and you have never recanted it- I have no reason to believe that you no longer hold to this conviction.  I'm not exaggerating anything- perhaps you just don't remember your ravings, because you were in a state of hysterical delirium?

 

Eloise wrote:
Yes, just keep telling yourself that and you'll be convinced of your absolute intellectual superiority in no time...

 

Don't flatter yourself.  In your case, Eloise, there's not much of an intellect to be superior to.

Yes, so I'm smarter than a potato- not much of an ego boost there.  I don't worry myself about these kinds of things.

....and round and round we go, you're addicted to the drama, Blake, let it go.

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I don't avoid detail Eloise;

I don't avoid detail Eloise; I was fairly specific as it stood.

 

Theists are completely capable of being contradictory (it's necessary for the position)- I don't need to criticize everything they say and every contradiction they make to demolish their positions. 

In particular, I tend to avoid criticizing contradictions that may lead them to accidentally do something decent in-spite of their beliefs; I'll focus on other things first and foremost.

Lets say a Christian thinks "thou shalt not kill" refers to killing animals- I'm not even going to go there until I've dismantled the rest.

 

 

Neither do I feel the need to waste my time quote hunting, or breaking down every detail- it's simply not needed.  I'm wordy enough as it is- if my relative brevity is insufficient to the purposes of somebody understanding me, I'm happy to elaborate and go into further detail *provided* it would be helpful.

 

That is, I'm not going to go into more detail for *you*, because you'll elect not to understand it anyway- nor, likely, for your goon iwbiek.


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Eloise wrote:mellestad

Eloise wrote:

mellestad wrote:

So without this personal revelation, your beliefs would be unchanged?

Sorry Mellestad. I missed this before... Kapkao's fault with his bloody great gargantuan picture making that page a nightmare to load... (there you go Kapkao, I nice ugly complaint for you... want it giftwrapped?)

Anyhow, good point. I would have to admit that without the personal revelation I might not have come to forming my belief system at all. That's not to backpedal, though, my belief structure as it is today still is not based on personal revelation, however, it's place was more critical to the formation of said beliefs than to say I would definitely have them without it.

 

 

I assume you've given some thought to the idea that you might be rationalizing a belief you want to be true?

 

Do you think your argument is strong enough to be objectively convincing to a rational person without the benefit of your emotional catalyst?  If so, what do you think is keeping otherwise rational people from believing you?

Everything makes more sense now that I've stopped believing.


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Eloise wrote:As for bad

Eloise wrote:

As for bad choices, the reality is we all pay a collective price for individual 'bad' choices, if we didn't then there would be no reason to call them bad and the point I have tried endlessly to get through too you is that mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices inherently entails alleviating the individual consequence. So unless you want us to consider it just fine for any given persons mistake to reverberate consequences through our societies that we all have to deal with, then you will agree that liberal benevolence is a small price to pay for a nice habitat.

 

How can individuals know their choices are bad unless they know they will experience the pain of these choices? How can a child learn to walk unless they know they will experience the pain of falling down? If falling down the stairs never hurt anyone, wouldn't we see people falling down the stairs all the time? Individuals must feel the pain of their own bad choices. If you fell down the stairs but I feel the pain instead of you, I'm just going to get angry every time you fall until eventually I have enough of your behavior.

Eloise wrote:

Besides my above comments, I also want to remind you of the sociology studies I cited to you which you seem to have forgotten. A greater sense of well-being translates directly into higher levels of individual motivation and studies of psychological factors in the workplace greatly indicate the consequence of social benevolence is far less idleness, not more or even the same amount as in its absence.

It is quite realistic and scientifically supported to suggest that an interdependent community built around the principle of universally available basic needs will include a constant, small and finite, ratio of non-contributors, of the flavour that you're concerned about, and be better off for it anyway.

 

Then why don't these societies exist already? Why is it that when welfare benefits and benefits for 'public' servants go up, the governments go broke from too many people looking for benefits and too few people willing to pay?

I still don't understand why you can't start a commune if you are so sure of this socialist utopia? Seems like all this is just an excuse to raise taxes on the productive and welfare for the unproductive.

 

Eloise wrote:

Yet again. Do you see me forcing anything?

The logic of this socialistic politic speaks brilliantly for itself, as I have said on numerous occasions, why would we need a gun when we can conclusively demonstrate that helping each other out is of direct benefit to ourselves. You can employ all sorts of misanthropic propaganda against it you like, the fact remains that social benevolence is our most powerful weapon against disease, crime and maladjustment and always will be.

Well then start the commune with all your fellow true believers. Let's see if you don't get overrun with people looking for something for nothing. Let's see if you're the first society in history that does not have an overpopulation/lack of resources issue.

 

Eloise wrote:

That is a theory which has been put to explaining why distinct numbers of bees just lay around most of the time when by all seeming accounts they should be contributing to building and production. It is plausible that they are reserving energy for defense of the hive, it is also suggested in that article that they might be on standby for other tasks. Regardless, in some cases this number in the bee population could go through life doing nothing at all and the point is it's not dragging down productivity.

Another point with bees is that the goal is really to spread the common genes. So you have worker bees and suicide warriors because they are all closely related. A bee's genes win if and only if the colony survives. With humans we largely compete against each other to spread our own unique genes and to gain the resources to do this. This will always be the case without mandatory birth control. So it makes little sense to be benevolent with those you are competing against.

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EXC wrote:Then why don't

EXC wrote:

Then why don't these societies exist already? Why is it that when welfare benefits and benefits for 'public' servants go up, the governments go broke from too many people looking for benefits and too few people willing to pay?

I still don't understand why you can't start a commune if you are so sure of this socialist utopia? Seems like all this is just an excuse to raise taxes on the productive and welfare for the unproductive.

It seems like there are more working and functional examples of societies utilizing socialism than there are of societies rejecting socialism for something like libertarianism.  Germany, Australia, Norway, Sweden, Canada, etc. and most of them are doing better than America financially.

 

Granted, none of them are ideologically pure socialists, but I would be surprised if Eloise advocates pure socialism without qualifiers.  But I'm not aware of a functional libertarian society either, now or in the past.

 

 

If Eloise is arguing for pure socialism and you are just arguing for a mixed system, nevermind.

Everything makes more sense now that I've stopped believing.


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Eloise wrote:We've been over

Eloise wrote:

We've been over this point, a basic social justice for all does not have to come at the cost of rewarding individuals for significant contribution, that can easily be achieved. 

As for bad choices, the reality is we all pay a collective price for individual 'bad' choices, if we didn't then there would be no reason to call them bad and the point I have tried endlessly to get through too you is that mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices inherently entails alleviating the individual consequence. So unless you want us to consider it just fine for any given persons mistake to reverberate consequences through our societies that we all have to deal with, then you will agree that liberal benevolence is a small price to pay for a nice habitat.

The first paragraph is confusing.  What is "that" referring to?  Do you mean that rewards for significant contribution can easily be achieved?  Because if so, you're ignoring your own claim that such rewards are unnecessary.

Also, the reality is not that we all pay a price for individual bad choices.  Often times a bad choice (in that it harms some of the collective) is beneficial to the chooser (stealing, for instance).  You also assume that mitigating the bad consequences of a bad choice on the non choosers must necessarily involve mitigating the bad consequences of that choice on the chooser.  This is also not true, especially in cases where there are no innate bad consequences for the chooser.  An effective way of handling choices that benefit the chooser at the cost of the collective is to take back from the chooser and give to the collective (return stolen property, for instance).  However, simply returning the chooser to the same level as before the choice was made is insufficient.  It offers no negative reinforcement, and actually makes bad choices optimal on the individual level (because of the chance of not getting caught, you get a net positive expected payoff).  The point of punishing people who make choices that harm others is to prevent them from making those same choices again in the future (to make their expected payoff from the choice negative).

Here's how I'm understanding your scenario.  If I steal 5$ from ten different people in the collective, then your solution would be to give everyone in the collective (including me) 2$ (specific numbers are arbitrary).  Woohoo, I just gained $52.  Isn't it now in everyone's self-interest to go around stealing all the time?  Also, where's that $2 per person coming from?  Your system makes stealing bad for everyone but the person stealing, which actually encourages stealing.  I think your system is just failing to consider actions that harm only part of the collective while benefiting some small portion or some single individual.

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mellestad wrote:EXC

mellestad wrote:

EXC wrote:

Then why don't these societies exist already? Why is it that when welfare benefits and benefits for 'public' servants go up, the governments go broke from too many people looking for benefits and too few people willing to pay?

I still don't understand why you can't start a commune if you are so sure of this socialist utopia? Seems like all this is just an excuse to raise taxes on the productive and welfare for the unproductive.

It seems like there are more working and functional examples of societies utilizing socialism than there are of societies rejecting socialism for something like libertarianism.  Germany, Australia, Norway, Sweden, Canada, etc. and most of them are doing better than America financially.

 

Granted, none of them are ideologically pure socialists, but I would be surprised if Eloise advocates pure socialism without qualifiers.  But I'm not aware of a functional libertarian society either, now or in the past.

 

 

FWIW, I wouldn't say I'm advocating any kind of pure socialism, at least, not in any immediate sense (and it depends on what is meant by 'pure socialism' beyond that).

I agree it is the mixed economies that are the most functional in our present day world and for the most in debate with EXC I am just advocating for shifts towards the left, in general, where he raises a point in protest against such things (eg universal healthcare etc).

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Zaq wrote:Eloise wrote:We've

Zaq wrote:

Eloise wrote:

We've been over this point, a basic social justice for all does not have to come at the cost of rewarding individuals for significant contribution, that can easily be achieved. 

As for bad choices, the reality is we all pay a collective price for individual 'bad' choices, if we didn't then there would be no reason to call them bad and the point I have tried endlessly to get through too you is that mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices inherently entails alleviating the individual consequence. So unless you want us to consider it just fine for any given persons mistake to reverberate consequences through our societies that we all have to deal with, then you will agree that liberal benevolence is a small price to pay for a nice habitat.

The first paragraph is confusing.  What is "that" referring to?  Do you mean that rewards for significant contribution can easily be achieved?  Because if so, you're ignoring your own claim that such rewards are unnecessary.

 

What claim? I have never said rewards are unnecessary, that I can recall.

 

 

Zaq wrote:

Also, the reality is not that we all pay a price for individual bad choices.  Often times a bad choice (in that it harms some of the collective) is beneficial to the chooser (stealing, for instance).  You also assume that mitigating the bad consequences of a bad choice on the non choosers must necessarily involve mitigating the bad consequences of that choice on the chooser.  This is also not true, especially in cases where there are no innate bad consequences for the chooser.  An effective way of handling choices that benefit the chooser at the cost of the collective is to take back from the chooser and give to the collective (return stolen property, for instance).  However, simply returning the chooser to the same level as before the choice was made is insufficient.  It offers no negative reinforcement, and actually makes bad choices optimal on the individual level (because of the chance of not getting caught, you get a net positive expected payoff).  The point of punishing people who make choices that harm others is to prevent them from making those same choices again in the future (to make their expected payoff from the choice negative).

Here's how I'm understanding your scenario.  If I steal 5$ from ten different people in the collective, then your solution would be to give everyone in the collective (including me) 2$ (specific numbers are arbitrary).  Woohoo, I just gained $52.  Isn't it now in everyone's self-interest to go around stealing all the time?  Also, where's that $2 per person coming from?  Your system makes stealing bad for everyone but the person stealing, which actually encourages stealing.  I think your system is just failing to consider actions that harm only part of the collective while benefiting some small portion or some single individual.

Ok... you're stretching my words a fair bit to get that out of them, I'm sure. Do you really think I mean to say if someone steals it shouldn't be taken back from them? 

The point I was trying to make about crime is that a criminal element is undermined by social benevolence, not that it is rewarded. To wit Petty crime is often perpetrated by the desperate, remove that element from the society and you have effectively negated a considerable percentage of a society's criminal population. I can't see how any rational person would have a probem with that thinking.

The point is -  treat desperation itself as a threat to social well-being, instead of the desperate, and you nip a problem off in the bud. I didn't say benevolence is the solution to all social problems, I just said it is the most powerful, mostly because it can undermine problems before they develop. Of course it still makes sense to have enforced standards of behaviour in societies, I just think they would be easier to enforce if extraneous elements that can be solved with benevolence were rooted out of the process.

So, all told, I don't know how you got the idea that I meant we should replace law enforcement with freebies, to think that you'd have to be projecting some seriously strange ideas about left politics cause I'm sure didn't say anything like it.

 

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Eloise wrote:We've been over

Eloise wrote:

We've been over this point, a basic social justice for all does not have to come at the cost of rewarding individuals for significant contribution, that can easily be achieved.

The bold part is where you claim that rewarding individuals for significant contribution is not necessary for basic social justice.  If "that" refers to the rewards then you're ignoring your claim that the rewards aren't necessary.  To what does "that' refer?

Eloise wrote:

As for bad choices, the reality is we all pay a collective price for individual 'bad' choices...

No, the reality is that we do not ALL pay a collective price for individual bad choices.  Stealing is an example of a bad choice that does not hurt the chooser.

Eloise wrote:

...the point I have tried endlessly to get through too you is that mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices inherently entails alleviating the individual consequence...

Understandably, I thought this was the point you've been trying to make.  As my stealing example demonstrates, mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices does NOT inherently entail alleviating the individual consequence.  Another example: paying out insurance policies for stolen goods alleviates the negative effects of the stealing on those who were stolen from, but has no effect on the thief.

Eloise wrote:

The point I was trying to make about crime is that a criminal element is undermined by social benevolence, not that it is rewarded.

I thought the previous quote was "the point [you] have tried endlessly to get though..."

Eloise wrote:

To wit Petty crime is often perpetrated by the desperate, remove that element from the society and you have effectively negated a considerable percentage of a society's criminal population.

I don't disagree with the fact that removing desperate environments will sharply decrease criminal behavior.  However, this claim was not at all clear in the text I quoted from you.  As I showed before, the claim you made in the text I initially quoted was that mitigating collective consequence inherently entails alleviating individual consequence.  This claim is what I take issue with.  I never even commented on the effects of removing desperate environments.

That said, while desperate environments do certainly increase criminal behavior, they do not necessarily excuse it.  Furthermore, a complete removal of desperate environments would not lead to a complete removal of criminal behavior because desperate environments are only one factor in what makes criminals behave the way they do.  So even after removing desperate environments there will still be a need to reprimand criminal behavior.  This need is an inherent part of the nature of the Nash Equilibria which keeps us in the high-payoff, help-each-other environment.

Eloise wrote:

I don't know how you got the idea that I meant we should replace law enforcement with freebies, to think that you'd have to be projecting some seriously strange ideas about left politics cause I'm sure didn't say anything like it.

Try:

Eloise wrote:

...mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices inherently entails alleviating the individual consequence.

Assuming that mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices is one of your goals (I admit I did assume this, but only because I don't have you pegged as a hateful or sociopathic person), your claim would inherently necessitate alleviating the individual consequence of bad actions.

The most extreme case of alleviating the individual consequence of bad actions is replacing law enforcement (which amplifies negative individual consequence) with freebies (which alleviate negative individual consequence).  You broke the law?  Well, we need to help everyone else recover from your terrible action so in order to do that we inherently have to help you out too (apparently).  Here's some help.  Now did you learn your lesson?

The point, though, is that we do not have to reward the criminal in order to help the victims.  Thus, we can alleviate the community without handing out freebies to the criminals.  Your claim implies otherwise.

You later clarify that you wish to change the environment in order to reduce the crime rate.  That too is a noble goal, and I agree that social benevolence will help with that.  However, until all crime has been eliminated (which is unlikely to occur any time soon), we must still deal with the question of what to do when crimes do occur.  Your assertion about mitigating consequences necessitates either inaction or rewarding crime while alleviating the social consequences (I suppose "hurt everyone" is another option given your constraints, but I won't pretend you subscribe to it).  My point is that your assertion is false, and punishing crime while simultaneously alleviating the social consequences of crime is not only possible but actually reasonable.

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mellestad wrote:Eloise

mellestad wrote:

Eloise wrote:

mellestad wrote:

So without this personal revelation, your beliefs would be unchanged?

Sorry Mellestad. I missed this before... Kapkao's fault with his bloody great gargantuan picture making that page a nightmare to load... (there you go Kapkao, I nice ugly complaint for you... want it giftwrapped?)

Anyhow, good point. I would have to admit that without the personal revelation I might not have come to forming my belief system at all. That's not to backpedal, though, my belief structure as it is today still is not based on personal revelation, however, it's place was more critical to the formation of said beliefs than to say I would definitely have them without it.

 

 

I assume you've given some thought to the idea that you might be rationalizing a belief you want to be true?

 

Do you think your argument is strong enough to be objectively convincing to a rational person without the benefit of your emotional catalyst?  If so, what do you think is keeping otherwise rational people from believing you?

 

Any thoughts Eloise?

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Zaq wrote:Eloise wrote:As

Zaq wrote:

Eloise wrote:

As for bad choices, the reality is we all pay a collective price for individual 'bad' choices...

No, the reality is that we do not ALL pay a collective price for individual bad choices.  Stealing is an example of a bad choice that does not hurt the chooser.

Eloise wrote:

...the point I have tried endlessly to get through too you is that mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices inherently entails alleviating the individual consequence...

Understandably, I thought this was the point you've been trying to make.  As my stealing example demonstrates, mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices does NOT inherently entail alleviating the individual consequence.  Another example: paying out insurance policies for stolen goods alleviates the negative effects of the stealing on those who were stolen from, but has no effect on the thief.

Eloise wrote:

The point I was trying to make about crime is that a criminal element is undermined by social benevolence, not that it is rewarded.

I thought the previous quote was "the point [you] have tried endlessly to get though..."

Ah.. Ok, I'm glad you've been more specific, Zaq, it now makes more sense why you're taking issue.

First what I probably need to say is that when I'm replying to EXC I tend to take for granted that the numerous exchanges we've already had on this subject still stand. So when I say, mitigating the collective consequence of individual bad choices inherently entails alleviating the individual consequence ... I am doing so with presumption that it is understood I mean fairly ordinary socialistic policies that EXC has branded bad for helping people who won't help themselves - like state-funded health and welfare institutions - not extreme notions of rewarding crime.

So I'd be guilty of presuming that the explicit reach of my generalisations was already understood, because I was talking to someone who is very familiar with them.

But, even so, I am surprised you found it rational to assume such extremes were meant to be implied and I will explain why in the next few paragraphs.

Zaq wrote:

The most extreme case of alleviating the individual consequence of bad actions is replacing law enforcement (which amplifies negative individual consequence) with freebies (which alleviate negative individual consequence). 

That's a non-sequitur, Zaq. Going back to your example, mitigating the consequence of a person stealing $50 does not in any way imply handing out a proportion of the stolen money to everyone. That's not mitigation of the collective consequence because the collective consequence is not missing money, ie the collective hasn't lost the money, its still there and still going to do what money does for the collective as always.

The loss of money is a consequence that reflects only on the individual who was stolen from.

What reflects on the collective is more subtle, its the lost sense of security that the victim will carry with him into his personal dealings in the future, the loss of his good faith in the community, the unhappiness that he will take with him into his next day and affect the people around him with - those are the collective consequences of crime. 

Mitigation of these consequences can be achieved by benevolent social policy. What happens next for a victim of crime, consequently afraid for his own security, can be summed up fairly generally, once the immediate threat is gone from his environment, as one of two things:

1. The remainder of his environment can be little or no less hostile toward his sense of security than his attacker was and his sense of unease will be compounded.

OR

2. The remainder of his environment can be far more benevolent and empathic toward his sense of security and his unease will be alleviated.

Alleviating the unease of the victim mitigates the collective consequence of the crime because the collective consequences of the crime are contributed directly by the victims sense of unease. Social benevolence achieves such alleviation.

 

Zaq wrote:

You broke the law?  Well, we need to help everyone else recover from your terrible action so in order to do that we inherently have to help you out too (apparently).  Here's some help.  Now did you learn your lesson?

We help out the criminal, inherently, through our benevolence, because of basically what I have already said - criminals are very often victims of crime.

But that said, the essential idea I'm proposing is simply policy that is geared to building a supportive empathic environment for them to turn to. To make the sociological environment a strong contrast to the experience of crime.

The main point, to reiterate, is that this is what is required to alleviate the collective consequence of an act of crime.

Law enforcement is yet important to alleviating the individual consequences - the direct loss or injury experienced by the victim still justifies a direct counter-action.

 

Zaq wrote:

You later clarify that you wish to change the environment in order to reduce the crime rate. 

I offered this first because I didn't understand where you could be coming from with your contention. As I noted at the end of my post, I thought you just had some strange ideas about what was implied by a left politic so I gave you a clarification that I thought appropriate in those circumstances - ie clarifying that socialistic thinking is well grounded in facts that rational people will easily agree on.

 

Zaq wrote:

 My point is that your assertion is false, and punishing crime while simultaneously alleviating the social consequences of crime is not only possible but actually reasonable.

 

Well I hope you now understand I never meant to imply that it wasn't. However, I consider benevolence, as I originally said, the single most powerful weapon we have against social ills.

And I would argue, then, that while punishing crime is possible and, of course, reasonable; as a primary weapon against crime, itself, a benevolent socialistic politic is, far and away, just better.

Zaq wrote:

Eloise wrote:

We've been over this point, a basic social justice for all does not have to come at the cost of rewarding individuals for significant contribution, that can easily be achieved.

The bold part is where you claim that rewarding individuals for significant contribution is not necessary for basic social justice.  If "that" refers to the rewards then you're ignoring your claim that the rewards aren't necessary.  To what does "that' refer?

LOL, yeah... technicality. Ok.

 

In my defense, I said 'for all' by which I meant 'for those who don't have it yet, due to one set of circumstances or another' so I was excluding reward for service because it's recognised already as a social justice - particularly by EXC, who I was presuming to be talking to in a quite vast ream of already established context, as I said.

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mellestad wrote:mellestad

mellestad wrote:

mellestad wrote:

Eloise wrote:

mellestad wrote:

So without this personal revelation, your beliefs would be unchanged?

Sorry Mellestad. I missed this before... Kapkao's fault with his bloody great gargantuan picture making that page a nightmare to load... (there you go Kapkao, I nice ugly complaint for you... want it giftwrapped?)

Anyhow, good point. I would have to admit that without the personal revelation I might not have come to forming my belief system at all. That's not to backpedal, though, my belief structure as it is today still is not based on personal revelation, however, it's place was more critical to the formation of said beliefs than to say I would definitely have them without it.

 

 

I assume you've given some thought to the idea that you might be rationalizing a belief you want to be true?

 

Do you think your argument is strong enough to be objectively convincing to a rational person without the benefit of your emotional catalyst?  If so, what do you think is keeping otherwise rational people from believing you?

 

Any thoughts Eloise?

Sorry Mellestad, I didn't mean to be seeming to ignore your post. I was going to reply the other night when AtheistExtremist posted something else that caught my eye. I have limited time to spend on the boards right now and E.K.'s question, for example, is going to require a long answer I'm a bit hesitant to commit to right now, too.

So yeah, you're right I have given thought to the human tendency to rationalise things we want to be true. But I have overturned virtually all of what I originally believed was going on during the experience, in the years since that I have contemplated it, so I think I can safely say I'm not coddling any pets here.

Yes I think my argument is strong enough to make ground without any emotional catalyst. And I believe this because I have seen it, even here on the boards.

Generally when a rational person is equipped with the broadness of knowledge required to grasp my argument they simply say it sounds like atheism to them, the other main response I get from the most rational people is that my argument covers ground that is completely uninteresting or opaque to them, so they don't bother hearing me out.

Either way, I'm not pushing any religion so it doesn't bother me if I am not believed, but FWIW, no spiritual experience is required to be able to agree with me, just interest is enough... and in my experience those who are interested enough tend to end up agreeing, but also agreeing to call it something else as well. 

 

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NoMoreCrazyPeople wrote: 

NoMoreCrazyPeople wrote:

  Eloise, your quite brilliant aren't you.  I haven't been able to find any posts of you describing what your belief system is.  I see you have over 1500 posts and so I'm sure you've done this before, but if you wouldn't mind.  Do you belong to any particualr religion, or is their a holy book you believe to be devinely inspired by a diety?  I respect your posts very much, and I see you are thiest, I was just wondering what that meant for you.  Do you just believe the universe was created and thats it, or is their more to it than that for you.  From the logic in your posts I would assume your are a rational theist (someone who believes the universe was created, but doesn't claim to know anything with certainty about this creator.)

Just because you cannot understand 99% of what she says does not make her brilliant.  All she does in her posts is continually obfuscate her position, such that when you try to address it, she will qualify what you say with some other drivel that has nothing to do with the topic. 


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Eloise wrote:I agree it is

Eloise wrote:

I agree it is the mixed economies that are the most functional in our present day world and for the most in debate with EXC I am just advocating for shifts towards the left, in general, where he raises a point in protest against such things (eg universal healthcare etc).

No I'm 100% for universal healthcare. And I believe it is actually possible. But it must be correlated to universal responsibility to pay for it, universal responsibility to not overpopulate the planet. You believe there can be a free lunch and it can be sustained, I don't.

 

Taxation is the price we pay for failing to build a civilized society. The higher the tax level, the greater the failure. A centrally planned totalitarian state represents a complete defeat for the civilized world, while a totally voluntary society represents its ultimate success. --Mark Skousen


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MOAR LIEK...

NoMoreCrazyPeople wrote:

Have fun you too.


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Fortunate_S wrote:Just

Fortunate_S wrote:

Just because you cannot understand 99% of what she says does not make her brilliant.  All she does in her posts is continually obfuscate her position, such that when you try to address it, she will qualify what you say with some other drivel that has nothing to do with the topic. 

LMAO!

Says the guy whose last argument to me consisted of insisting I choose a hairstyle to suit the features of my face.

I think you can keep your idea of staying 'on topic', you aren't doing it right and probably shouldn't be trying to teach it to anyone else.

 

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EXC wrote:Eloise wrote:I

EXC wrote:

Eloise wrote:

I agree it is the mixed economies that are the most functional in our present day world and for the most in debate with EXC I am just advocating for shifts towards the left, in general, where he raises a point in protest against such things (eg universal healthcare etc).

No I'm 100% for universal healthcare.

You are? That's news to me.

 

EXC wrote:

And I believe it is actually possible.

You've changed your tune quite dramatically on that.

 

EXC wrote:

But it must be correlated to universal responsibility to pay for it,

Mmhmm... this must be correlated with universal means to pay for it.

Knowing what we've discussed before I have to ask -- Are you suggesting equal proportion per capita regardless of means? And, if so, on what grounds to you find that a. practical and b. justifiable.

 

EXC wrote:

 

universal responsibility to not overpopulate the planet.

Well that hasn't changed, fair enough. We've always agreed that overpopulation is a burden, what we don't agree on is the terms by which population control can be achieved. You propose enforcement, I cite sociological statistics which evidence enforcement is unnecessary where the environment is conducive to choice.

 

 

EXC wrote:

You believe there can be a free lunch and it can be sustained, I don't.

 

No, I think you'll find you dyed-in-the-wool capitalists also believe in free lunch, no less than anyone does, and its nothing more than a myth of propaganda that makes you think otherwise.

 

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I think the recent

I think the recent shenanigans of the financial sector demonstrate that they believe endless wealth can be conjured from debt, far crazier than believing in the occasional free sandwich.

Extreme free-market capitalism is just as batshit crazy and ultimately disastrous as extreme Marxism. 

 

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