Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Reply to Reynold, Part (n+2)

I. REYNOLD’S DEFENSE OF ATHEISM
The challenge which Reynold faces is this: he is challenged to refute basic Theism, or admit that he cannot. He is challenged to perform this refutation using either the Philosophical Materialist standard which is material, empirical, scientific evidence, or the discipline of logical deductive argumentation which is axiomatically based, and Reductio validated.

This conversation demonstrates Reynold’s response to this challenge:
”Reynold: You are of a particular branch of theism called christianity, which does indeed say that no other deities exist.”

False and False. Reynold has no idea whether I hold beliefs or not. Judeo-Christianity acknowledges the existence of other non-physical existences and possible false gods. Reynold does not understand his chosen opponent: Judeo Christianity.
Reynold: ”Steve [who is Steve??] quoting me and ignoring the evidence that I had in those links:
But: As for evidence of no god:
biblical mistakes, bible archeology problems for a start...

Stan: ‘No, what is needed is actual physical evidence for the claim (non-existence), the same as Atheists require of Theists.”

Reynold: Here you show your ignorance again: It is those who assert the something exists have to show it...as I said earlier.

First, those who reject a proposition without giving any reason for the rejection, give absolutely no reason to believe the rejection. The Burden of Rebuttal exists whether Atheists like it or not, and the Atheist attempt to skate away without giving reasons for their claim of rejection is rationally rejectable.

Second, the biblical statement, “have no other gods before me” puts forth the truth: the existence of other gods is not rejected biblically, it is supported; worshipping them is rejected.

Third, the demand for physical evidence of a non-physical entity is a classic Category Error, which has been pointed out but ignored.

Reynold continues:
”Do xians give such physical evidence that no other deity exists before asserting that their deity is the only one?”

Since Judeo -Christianity does not make that claim, no defense of that claim is necessary. And the question is clearly of no consequence to the challenge to disprove even/only/just one deity. It is a diversion to avoid the actual inability to refute even a single deity.

Next is the challenge made to Reynold:
”Evidence consists of empirical, experimental, replicable and replicated, falsifiable and not falsified, peer reviewed, public data that shows that all possibilities have been investigated and have been positively empirically determined to show that no deity can possibly exist non-physically in a non-physical space.”
Here is Reynold’s response:
”So, are you prepared to show the xian's evidence that no other deity exists?”

That is Reynold’s response to the challenge; he ignores it. He tries to divert the conversation from the actual challenge. He uses the Category Error to form a Red Herring. The next four or five times it is presented, Reynold dodges in several different directions, but never addresses it.

This is the main issue with the concept of Atheism: the adherent cannot provide either disciplined logic or empirical validation for support of his rejection of the basic premise of Theism. There are many excuses given for this by Atheists who have been challenged: "no Burden of Rebuttal", "require physical evidence for a non-physical entity", "the description must contain physical characteristics to measure", etc. But they are just making up excuses, and don’t even attempt to actually refute the Theist claim.

In the absence of a refutation of the Theist claim, then, the Atheist can surely be challenged to answer for his rejection of the proposition.
This ends the pertinent portion of (what should be) the debate.

II. NOW FOR THE FALSE ACCUSATIONS AND RED HERRINGS:

Reynold’s creation of Red Herrings by making false accusations against my character:

First, the purpose of the Red Herring Fallacy is to deflect the conversation away from the main points. The purpose of the Ad Hominem Abusive Fallacy is to try to arouse the emotion of resentment and anger in the opponent, who then goes into an emotional mode and loses control of the rational end of his argument. These two tactics are the primary response mode being used by Reynold, and he is ramping up the level of attack in his use of these fallacies.

Reynold has diverted the conversation away from his inability to refute the basis for Theism by using his accusations made on me, with the accusations being entirely unrelated to the main point. Again, the actual point being Reynold’s inability to refute the basis for Theism and to support the void of Atheism using either disciplined deductive logic or material, empirical science. So the Ad Hominem Abusives serve a dual function which includes creating Red Herrings in order to allow Reynold to avoid addressing the main point.

So it is necessary to address Reynolds accusations.

First, he accused me of lying about having been an Atheist.

On 6-21-12, at 8:59 pm, Reynold made this statement.
”If your views on atheists is based on what you were like as an atheist, then all it shows is what you were like, and still are.

Not us.”

Now by “us”, does Reynold mean just a few of his buddies? Or does Reynold mean Atheists in general? Since the consequence of this judgment is that, [IF Stan is not like “us”, THEN Stan is a liar], it is perfectly clear that Reynold is speaking for all Atheists as "us". When asked about this, the following conversation took place:

Set up:
Stan:”Your continued use of the misspelled word "Christian" as a pejorative merely proves the point: Perhaps I should start calling you an Athhole, and your empty belief system, Athhole-ism.

You speak for all Athholes, do you? You must be quite the omniscient phenomenon.”



Reynold:”You speak for all Athholes, do you? You must be quite the omniscient phenomenon.

Don't you speak for all atheists whenever you make your bigoted blanket statements about "the lack of empathy" and "stinginess" and "lack of a moral code" and whatnot?

Aren't you asking for someone to speak for all atheists when you put up this post asking for an "atheist moral code"?”

Reynold continues,

”So again, you've ignored the links and quotes I gave and pretend that we have no morals at all. As I said earlier: If your claim of being an atheist for 40 years is true, then all you've really done by all your posts is show the lack of your character, not the lack of ours.”
[emphasis added]


Is this an example of Reynold denying that he is speaking for all Atheists? Hardly. Reynold is clearly speaking for ALL Atheists, and condemning my character on “our” behalf.

(As an aside, I asked for Atheists to give their “personal moral code”, not some general Atheist moral code; Reynold’s precipitating statement is demonstrably false but he never admitted that).

Based on his assessment of my “tone” and falsely purportedly bigoted statements, and his self-authorized speaking for all Atheists, Reynold then charged me with lying about my history as an Atheist. This he based on his knowledge of how all Atheists are and how I don’t fit. This condemnation was done purely on Reynold’s self-endowed universal knowledge of all Atheists, and self-anointed authority to speak to the qualities of all Atheists.

(Interestingly, one of the charges made on me by Reynold was overgeneralization…)

He subsequently charged me with lying about many things based on his speaking for all Atheists. This is purely profiling/condemnation, without a single shred of actual corroborating evidence to support his charge. He has no actual knowledge of my history or my beliefs then or now, if any. NO KNOWLEDGE.

His charge is false; he did claim to speak for all Atheists, and he used that claim as part of his charge against me.

Now let’s address my actual position on Atheism, rather than the caricature presented by Reynold. Here I repeated my position for Reynold:
”Now. I admit to using the term “Atheists” improperly, and I will try not to continue that bad habit. I should be referring to Atheism and not to Atheists. The reason is that Atheism, as an assertion or proposition, is specifically a void and nothing more; Atheists are free to fill that void however they wish and with whatever they wish because the void of Atheism gives no guidance whatsoever. Especially glaring is the absolute void which Atheism, as an assertion or a proposition, presents to the Atheist on the subject of morality, the definition of morality, the definition of good and evil, whether morality actually even exists, and the sources of life, intellect, agency, and even whether those things actually exist. Atheism addresses only the issue of a deity. Nothing more.

This void allows, even necessitates, that the adherent to Atheism either create his own answers to these subjects, or accept the answers which other adherents have created for these subjects, or ignore any further thoughts regarding the consequences of Atheism. But these positions are not engendered by Atheism or a part of the proposition of Atheism, they are separate from but enabled by Atheism. Further, many of them are directly contradictory, such as Consequentialism vs. Virtue Ethics; Friedrich Nietzsche’s Anti-Rationalism vs. Scientism; Deontology vs. Aristotelian Peripatetics; Kantianism vs. Relativism; and so on. Wikipedia lists 91 Ethical Theories to choose from.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Ethical_theories”

In no manner can this rationally be interpreted as, “pretend that we have no morals at all.” Reynold’s charges are false, completely and totally.

However, I might add that just by knowing that a person is an Atheist, it is not possible to know what that person’s moral theory, if any, might be. If a person’s moral theory is not known but is known to start with a void, there is no reason to trust that person. And for that reason, Atheists are not trusted any more than rapists and sexual abusers according to national polls. This lack of trust is rational, not bigotry as some Atheists claim.

According to Reynold,

MORE LIES

(The first accusation of lying was addressed above)
”Stan:’...and certainly not while trying to convince the world that they are the sole, logical, evidence-based centroid of rationality,...’

Reynold: 'Never said that. That's a lie right there. **Lie 2**'

To start, I did NOT say that he said that, and reading the entire sentence would show that; what I said is that those claims are a theme common to a specific group (Atheists) and not to other groups with which he would like to analogize Atheists. Reynold is less than scrupulous in making character claims on his opponent. Further, he did not refute it.

Reynold’s charge of “lie” is rejected.

Reynold’s Next Lie Accusation
”Stan: '(b)for your claim that Atheists are moral, or...'

Reynold: 'And here you go with that lie, again! As I keep saying and you keep ignoring: Just because we don't have one unchanging universal moral set of rules does NOT mean that we are immoral. You have exposed your bigotry against atheists right here. Yet you get mad when I call you out on being a bigot?

(c)that for someone to point out the failures of Atheism is bigotry, idiotic, and of low character.

Uh, for the perfect example of bigotry, just see right above.”

Let’s discuss this assertion, which Reynold does not refute, he merely says that it is a lie and bigoted, without any evidence to support that charge. Is there evidence to support the assertion itself? Yes, and it has been given above, and I will summarize it here:
(1) Atheism is a void without any moral theory attached to it.

(2) Any moral theory which an Atheist might have is an add-on to Atheism and not part of Atheism.

(3) It is possible for an Atheist to have no moral theory at all (Jeffry Dahmer).

(4) Therefore it is not possible to declare Atheists “moral” as a universal statement.

Reynold’s charge of “lie” is rejected.

So Reynold has continued to make more false claims on my character.

HATRED

As for the hatred I have been accused of projecting, and at which Reynold takes offense, here is his list:
” Time for a reality check. Who's really got the "hate filled rant" going here?

ex 1): Killing babies is perfectly consistent with the Atheist penchant for abortion...”

In the years I have been doing this blog there has been virtually no Atheist who has come right out against abortion and actually condemned it, including Reynold. Many, many have defended abortion as “women’s rights” and the denial of any rights to the fetus, based on their personal, moral opinions and presumption of their personal moral authority over others. However, what I said was too strong. What I should have said is “consistent with the overwhelmingly pro-abortion stance of the many Atheists I have encountered”.

Further, Reynold wants to make a condemnation of Christians for actions which are not condemned under Atheism or many of the add-on, made-up ethics, and which were precipitated by, and participated in by Atheists in the huge massacres of the 20th century - which Reynold denies had any relationship to their Atheist content, while insisting that Judeo-Christians believe that they should kill babies based on the bible.
”ex 2): ...if the Atheist defines “good” to coincide with his own proclivities for behavior”

I stand by this statement; it would be irrational for a person who makes up his own morality (or gets it from someone else who makes it up) to fabricate or accept a moral system incompatible with his own preferred behaviors and inclinations. In fact, the case for empathetic relativism is a precise example of defining “good” on the fly to coincide with the emotional inclinations of the Atheist who is declaring the moral content of a specific situation.
”ex 3): Atheists are empathetic to the tune of $16.67 per month, and are less likely to be motivated to help actual needy people.”

An ironic charge, considering this: Matthew 26:6-13

This is a factual statement with the data and source given. Thus it is not a charge, nor is it hate, it is objective data.

Reynold’s response was of the form Tu Quoque Fallacy, and of no value since he has no idea of my own belief system, if any. He has not refuted the facts, but merely calls the facts “hate”.
”ex 4): There is no embedded excuse here for the absolute stinginess of Atheists”
I stand by this statement; it is documented as shown in ex 3), above.
”ex 5): And you have no defense for the non-empathy of Atheists”

I stand by this statement; it is documented as shown in ex 3), above, and it is not credible that Atheism is a superior moral system because it is based on empathy, considering the documented level of actual, not theoretical, empathy which Atheists actually exhibit in the real world.
”ex 6): ...to your hate-filled belief system...
(any evidence that atheism is "hate-filled" by the way?”

I believe I was referring specifically to Reynold’s apparent belief system, which includes false accusations made on false statements and with accompanying invective at every turn, not to Atheism in general.
”From what I've seen here, it's you who seems hate-filled to me). "Atheists" this, and "atheists" that! Wow.

From reading your blog I've never once noticed you say anything like "some athiests" or even "most atheists", it is always "atheists" period, followed by whatever smear or accusation you have lined up. Try replacing "atheist" with any other group and you'll see what you really are.”

As for “smear”, I am happy to back up or reject any comment I’ve made which any Atheist chooses to challenge and can conclusively prove false. The above statement is false.

I am not aware of any “other group” which,
(a) makes unsubstantiated claims as the basis for their ideology,

(b) which ideology starts with a void to be back-filled (or not) with myriad made-up but contradicting moral theories of “good” behaviors (with contradictory concepts of “good”),

(c) many of which theories are not for the adherents, but are for imposition on all of mankind in order to “benefit” all of mankind, yet without the permission of all of mankind, and without the moral authority or actual authority to declare anything for all mankind. Atheism is unique in this regard. Criticism of Atheism is specific to Atheism because Atheism is unique. Comparing Atheism with stamp collecting falls under the False Analogy Fallacy.

III. STATE OF THE DEBATE

Due to Reynold’s failure to address the actual subject and instead to make false charges on my character as diversions, I see no point in continuing with this, unless Reynold takes responsibility for his false charges and takes responsibility for addressing the actual subject, rather than exercising diversions. So it is up to Reynold as to whether this will become a civilized debate or stop right here.

71 comments:

godless said...

I am not aware of any “other group” which,
(a) makes unsubstantiated claims as the basis for their ideology,

(b) which ideology starts with a void to be back-filled (or not) with myriad made-up but contradicting moral theories of “good” behaviors (with contradictory concepts of “good”),

(c) many of which theories are not for the adherents, but are for imposition on all of mankind in order to “benefit” all of mankind, yet without the permission of all of mankind, and without the moral authority or actual authority to declare anything for all mankind.


Have you perhaps considered every religion ever? But let's not make sweeping universal statements. Have you considered Christianity?

a) unsubstantiated claims? Check.
b) contradictory moral precepts? Check.
c) suppose to apply to all mankind, lacks any real moral authority to back this up? Check.

I like this blog. Irony is so amusing.

JD Curtis said...

Reynold is a complete, intellectual fraud. One need look no farther than this thread for sufficient evidence to prove this.

http://voxday.blogspot.com/2011/08/let-me-explain-how-this-works.html

He is so completely and dogmatically wedded to his beliefs as to make open discussion about them impossible.

Reynold said...

My reply.

FrankNorman said...

Its a give-away what kind of Atheist you are talking to, if you find out that he equates Theism with belief in Biblical Inerrancy, which Reynold apparently does.

Evidence? That he offered supposed conflicts between archeological findings and the Biblical record as an argument against the existence of God.

Reynold said...

Hiya, JD:
Reynold is a complete, intellectual fraud. One need look no farther than this thread for sufficient evidence to prove this.

Actually, I'd encourage you to look beyond Vox's blog.


Let me know if he's ever bothered to deal with this, or this?

That second link and the post right afterward contains my reply to Vox...I believe I posted the links to it on his site. Even if he never published the links, my reply is still out there, at least.

And that's the last I'll be dealing with him, and I suspect you, JD.

By the way, JD, any comment about this?

Check out that link, it has a link to JD's posting on Myer's blog. You can see how brilliant JD is there. Just do a search for his name and on that page and you'll find all his posts and you can see how intellectually honest JD is.


That whole thread by the way, is devoted to Vox's scientific incompetence and his misogyny. Yeah, and JD wants to talk about me?

As an aside: I guess Vox is still staying with cocomment?


Now for Frank Norman

Its a give-away what kind of Atheist you are talking to, if you find out that he equates Theism with belief in Biblical Inerrancy, which Reynold apparently does.
That's the assumption I went with, since in light of the fact that Stan had in the abortion post, started defending the christian god Also, he touted the so-called "Miracle of Lourdes" as evidence of theism.

That Lourdes place is a catholic thing.

Was I supposed to assume that Stan was a buddhist or something?

When Stan told me I was wrong, I corrected it. So what's your point again?


Evidence? That he offered supposed conflicts between archeological findings and the Biblical record as an argument against the existence of God.
It was a little bit more than that, but you've shown that you don't read things through before shooting off your mouth.

Stan said...

JD,
Thanks for the link. I just finished reading it, and I see that Vox came to the same conclusion, with the same result. Interesting.

I didn't know that Reynold was a pharyngulan; that explains a lot. Now I can see a lot of PZ's thuggish irrationality in Reynold's life's works.

Stan said...

godless,
Your so cute.
"Have you perhaps considered every religion ever? But let's not make sweeping universal statements. Have you considered Christianity?

a) unsubstantiated claims? Check."


False; objectively substantiated rationally, without fear of refutation by Atheists. Frequently subsequently substantiated experientially, subjectively.

"b) contradictory moral precepts? Check."

False. I said contradictory concepts of "good". Christianity has contradictory interpretations of human-based ecclesiasticism, not fundamental precepts.


"c) suppose to apply to all mankind, lacks any real moral authority to back this up? Check."

No moral authority? You have absolutely no way of knowing that: When you find out, well... then and only then you will know. Completely false.

You're a hoot. Why not log in as "hoot"?

godless said...

godless,
Your so cute.


Aw I'm so glad you think so, but I'm married and you're not my type at all.

False; objectively substantiated rationally, without fear of refutation by Atheists.

I guess we have different concepts of "rationally", because all I hear from religious apologetics are god-of-the-gaps, special pleading, personal incredulity, equivocation and a host of other logical fallacies.

Hey, maybe you'll be the first to present an argument based in objective evidence. Since you reject even the possibility however, I rather doubt it.

False. I said contradictory concepts of "good". Christianity has contradictory interpretations of human-based ecclesiasticism, not fundamental precepts.

Proper moral precepts are not "good" now? Or are you just playing at slight of hand again? God = good is a meaningless tautology. The moral precepts such as the Ten Commandments are repeatedly contradicted in other passages. Also, absolutely no one follows the 10 Commandments. Some "objective" morality you claim to possess.

How do you "correctly" interpret the fundamental precepts? Without subjective bias now..

No moral authority? You have absolutely no way of knowing that:

Hahah I'll find out when I'm dead eh? Classy argument. I suppose while I'm burning in Hell? Meh, at least the company will be preferable to the alternative. Better parties too I'm sure.

But without the snark. You just prove my point. Applies to all mankind. Authority cannot be demonstrated.

Hoot hoot.

rachael said...

"Christianity has contradictory interpretations of human-based ecclesiasticism, not fundamental precepts."

What are the fundamental precepts?

Stan said...

”Hey, maybe you'll be the first to present an argument based in objective evidence. Since you reject even the possibility however, I rather doubt it.”
I gave the deductive argument a while back, and it’s on the challenge: go refute it.

”Proper moral precepts are not "good" now? Or are you just playing at slight of hand again? God = good is a meaningless tautology. The moral precepts such as the Ten Commandments are repeatedly contradicted in other passages. Also, absolutely no one follows the 10 Commandments. Some "objective" morality you claim to possess.”
You are being silly. Yes, god=good is a meaningless Non-tautology. And give up on pissing on the Ten Commandments: this is not an ecclesiastical site. It’s interesting that you make the universal claim that no one obeys the Ten Commandments. You know that how?? Maybe you are thinking that those who try to obey sometimes fail? Or maybe you have this omniscience thing where you know that absolutely no one on the surface of the earth gives a crap about them? You need to support that claim.

And finally, You apparently have no clue as to what my moral is based on, or whether it is non-subjective or not. But I will defend the idea that you cannot refute the claim of the Abrahamic religions (any of them) to have a non-subjective basis. All you can do is piss on it.

”How do you "correctly" interpret the fundamental precepts? Without subjective bias now..”
This blog is about Atheism. It is not rational to want to talk about fictional existences and their interpretations, unless you are doing literary criticism. If you actually wanted to know, there are many sites I suspect that would discuss it with you, from their ecclesiastic viewpoint. What you want to do is to continue to piss all over stuff you don’t believe in.

”No moral authority? You have absolutely no way of knowing that:

Hahah I'll find out when I'm dead eh? Classy argument. I suppose while I'm burning in Hell? Meh, at least the company will be preferable to the alternative. Better parties too I'm sure.”

And a classy response. The fact is that you don’t know, and if you claim to know, you are making false claims with no evidence to support them. You are free to believe whatever you wish; that’s part of the deal.

”But without the snark. You just prove my point. Applies to all mankind. Authority cannot be demonstrated.”

You forgot the last part of your sentence: “…materially, under the Category Error which we Atheists refuse to acknowledge”. Which brings to mind: When are you going to acknowledge the challenge of disproving basic Theism, so that you actually have a fact and material evidence-based worldview? And go ahead and use some real science to disprove the claims about Lourdes - you've cooled your heels here long enough: get to work. No dodges now, just get on it.

Stan said...

Rachael,
They start with the basic claim of Theism: it is rational to consider that a non-physical agent which has the ability to create universes exists.

If a person rejects this then he is not a Theist, and no other precepts matter.

rachael said...

Stan: "I said contradictory concepts of "good". Christianity has contradictory interpretations of human-based ecclesiasticism, not fundamental precepts."

Me: "What are the fundamental precepts?"

Stan: "They start with the basic claim of Theism: it is rational to consider that a non-physical agent which has the ability to create universes exists.

If a person rejects this then he is not a Theist, and no other precepts matter.
"

Me: How does your answer apply to non-contradictory fundamental precepts of "good"?

libro lector said...

"It is quite interesting that you fail to mention the $500,000,000 of taxpayer money that is diverted to the killing of in utero humans purely at the whim of the female parent and without any semblance of oversight or ethical principle."

$500,000,000 of tax-payer money? Quite a claim! You need to support this with evidence. Both the amount and that this amount is tax money used only for abortions.
Diverted? Diverted from what?
Purely at whim? Would you call an abortion that saves the life of the women a whim?
Without semblance of oversight? There appears to be a large amount of oversight. You made the claim.

billy T said...

Jeffry Dahmer was a Christian.

Stan said...

Rachael says,
”Me: How does your answer apply to non-contradictory fundamental precepts of "good"?”

Taken from the human perspective, it is “good” that a universe exists, rather than does not exist.
The universe does not necessarily have to exist; it is more parsimonious that nothing would exist than that something exists. If it is good that we exist, then it is good that the universe we require for our existence exists, and that the agent which created it exists.

For more on this you might explore books on Theology. This blog is for the analysis of Atheism and is focused on Atheist thought.

Stan said...

Billy T says,
"Jeffry Dahmer was a Christian."

Dahmer converted to Christianity in prison. His moral philosophy before that was his belief in evolution: "from slime, back to slime", he was quoted as saying. That Atheist void, coupled with evolution, allowed him the moral freedom to do what he did.

Total moral freedom equates to total absence of principles. If you deplore cannibalism then you have abandoned total moral freedom for a principle. Relativists have no principles upon which to condemn any possible human activity.

Look up Dahmer.

godless said...

Relativists have no principles upon which to condemn any possible human activity.

Bzzt. Incorrect.

Relativism is the concept that points of view have no absolute truth or validity, having only relative, subjective value according to differences in perception and consideration.

No absolutes =/= no principles.

We condemn the activity of Dahmer based on our relative, subjective valuation of human life. Ie, we value it, and don't want people to eat us, hence when people eat other people, we condemn them.

It's complicated stuff I know. /s

By contrast, I do not condemn the folks the movie Alive was based on. They ate people sure, but it was necessary for their survival. They didn't sacrifice people...

So is cannibalism really objectively absolutely wrong? Nope. Not in my subjective, relativistic view.

Compare this to the religious fairy tale that all sins are forgiven by accepting Jesus as your master. Yep, Dahmer goes to heaven because you told god he was soooo sorry. Boo hoo I'll never eat another person again Jesus.

This is the objective moral authority which Stan apparently endorses.

Hoot hoot.

Stan said...

Libro lector,
I had to respond in a new post... blogger went screwy. It is up.

Reynold said...

For the heck of it: Check out this post and the thread that it's in for more JD Curtis fun.

It seems he had mistaken me for someone else at one point.

Stan said...

Godless says,
”Relativism is the concept that points of view have no absolute truth or validity, having only relative, subjective value according to differences in perception and consideration.”
Either this is a principle for Relativism, or it is meaningless and relative to nothing in particular.

No absolutes =/= no principles.

Now is that statement an absolute? Or is it just for this situation? I think it must be relative, yes? Why sure it is. See the actual definition, below.

So for you, under your relativism, the term “principle” is a relative term, sometimes meaning total changeability depending upon perception and consideration, as opposed to the tougher principles of arithmetic, or the principles of physics, or the principles of say, tautology (definition), which are all relative to perception and have no actual reality.

I think you should try that on a math test some time.

principle, n. 1. The ultimate source, origin or cause of something;

2. a natural or original tendency, faculty or endowment;

3. a fundamental truth, law, or doctrine, or motivating force upon which others are based.

You claim this not to be “true for you”?

As a relativist you also redefine terms to suit your purpose; they mean what your perception and consideration makes them mean for you, with absolute meaning disregarded: there are no absolutes, including meaning, so the Relativist can use words to mean the opposite of what anyone else might think they mean, and that is the right meaning for the occasion. So one must see the situation from the viewpoint of the Relativist (probably changing by the moment), and try to anticipate the new meanings which the words he uses might actually have, for him, for the moment, for the situation.

The main principle of relativism is that there are no fundamental truths, laws or doctrines; the motivating force has no absolute base and can therefore be anything at any time depending upon individual perception (perceptions are always flawed: basic philosophical assessment of subjectivism due to lack of total fact base) and consideration (consideration of exactly what? Not absolute principles, for sure, so consideration must be of even more relative non-values, as judged by the relativist who is imposing his relativism and personal perception upon the situation).

You’re just jerking my chain to waste my time. Surely you don’t believe this stuff.

”So is cannibalism really objectively absolutely wrong? Nope. Not in my subjective, relativistic view.”

Then neither is capturing your homosexual partner du jour, and cannibalizing him and as many subsequent ones as needed to get through life, unless you draw an actual principle to oppose it.

”Compare this to the religious fairy tale that all sins are forgiven by accepting Jesus as your master. Yep, Dahmer goes to heaven because you told god he was soooo sorry. Boo hoo I'll never eat another person again Jesus.”

Actually, compare Dahmer’s Atheist belief system and subsequent “freedom from absolutes” with your relativist system which allows any activity so long as your perception of it is just fine. Dahmer’s relativist perception and consideration allowed him a quite a number of meals before he was subjected to (temporarily) absolute laws of the land.

And my, my. Where is your empathy for your fellow Relativist? He was merely exercising his Relativism. What you criticize is his conversion out of Relativism into a presumption of empathy well beyond any Atheist actual empathy. So, you’ll have to ramp up that empathy, there, hoot, to cover your fellow Relativists.

Fred said...

I'm surprised there's a definition for moral relativism.

godless said...

Relativists have no principles upon which to condemn any possible human activity.

”Relativism is the concept that points of view have no absolute truth or validity, having only relative, subjective value according to differences in perception and consideration.”

Either this is a principle for Relativism, or it is meaningless and relative to nothing in particular.


It's a definition. Truly, you can't be this dense? No, you're just bastardizing the argument intentionally to skew the conversation into some inane ramble. Again.

The point I made was that simply because you don't see a source for objective, ultimate morality (at least certainly not via the mythology of religion) does not mean one is absent principles.

Refuting this statement by yourself

Relativists have no principles upon which to condemn any possible human activity.

prin·ci·ple   [prin-suh-puhl]
noun
1.
an accepted or professed rule of action or conduct: a person of good moral principles.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/principle


I'm repeating so much of the conversation because you seem to have a hard time following.

Actually, compare Dahmer’s Atheist belief system and subsequent “freedom from absolutes” with your relativist system which allows any activity so long as your perception of it is just fine.

Yeah you dress this up in enough polemic language and it sounds horrible (you excel at that, I've noticed), but really all you've said is that any activity is allowed so long as you think it is okay. Yep. I'm fine with any activity I'm okay with.

Any other brilliant insights you want to throw out there?

What you criticize is his conversion out of Relativism into a presumption of empathy well beyond any Atheist actual empathy.

Stan, the point you are failing to appreciate is this is not an argument that relative leads to some optimal outcome. The argument merely articulates that morality IS relative and subjective.

But hey, you claim I'm wrong, so prove it. Provide me the source and details of the objective, ultimate morality and ethical system.

Also, if you are not going to let the rest of my posts through, I'm not going to bother continuing this conversation.

Fred said...

[i]godless said....[i]

[i]Also, if you are not going to let the rest of my posts through, I'm not going to bother continuing this conversation.[i]

Stan's exercising his relativism. Where's your empathy?

[i]Yep. I'm fine with any activity I'm okay with.[i]

So is he.

Fred said...

Stan, I don't know how to put someone else's comments in italics. Mind fixing my last post for me?

Stan said...

Fred,
Use the right and left arrow keys instead of the brackets and you've got it.

To start italics use this, without the semicolons:
<;i;>.

The closing italics is this sequence:

Left arrow "<"; forward slash "/"; the letter "i"; right arrow ">".

The slash indicates that the italics command stops there.

Stan said...

Fred said...
godless said....

Also, if you are not going to let the rest of my posts through, I'm not going to bother continuing this conversation.

Stan's exercising his relativism. Where's your empathy?

Yep. I'm fine with any activity I'm okay with.

So is he.

godless said...

Stan's exercising his relativism

So you agree morality is relative?

Good contribution.

Fred said...

Stan, thanks for the message.

Godless, I didn't say that. I'm pointing out that you shouldn't claim subjectivity and then expect Stan to meet your demand. Just one of the many problems with moral relativism. And where's your empathy?

Stan said...

godless says,
"The point I made was that simply because you don't see a source for objective, ultimate morality (at least certainly not via the mythology of religion) does not mean one is absent principles."

If one (a Relativist) is not absent principles, then what are they?

List them for us.

Right here.

Then tell us when they don't really apply as "principled" principles, under Relativism.

godless said...

Fred, uh yeah you did. And despite your implication, claiming relative subjective morality isn't an excuse for acting like an asshole. It's a valid explanation as to why you might be an asshole. But it's not a justifiable reason to be a petulant dick.

If one (a Relativist) is not absent principles, then what are they?

List them for us.


”Relativism is the concept that points of view have no absolute truth or validity, having only relative, subjective value according to differences in perception and consideration.”

I've already told you some of my principles. You'll have to pay better attention. Remember that big discussion on reciprocal altruism?

Why don't you man up and list your objective morality, and how you know it is objective. As repeated asked and repeatedly dodged.

Stan said...

godless,
You are banned. You're behavior is intolerant and prejudiced; you insult and make childish allegations; you have been warned way too many times to be civil.

Adios

Stan said...

A quick observation. Atheists seem to think that there are no consequences for their actions, since they personally are the arbiters of morality.

There are consequences, and Atheists are not the arbiters of morality. Claiming moral principles while also demonstrating aggressive intolerance is indicative of irrationality.

Fred said...

It's always interesting to see how people who don't get what they want are always accusing other people of being the bad guy.

godless said...

You are banned. You're behavior is intolerant and prejudiced; you insult and make childish allegations; you have been warned way too many times to be civil.


I didn't intend to insult anyone. I'm not even sure where you are taking offense? Are you looking at where I called people assholes? I was referring to my own set of personal rules ...

And, you've repeatedly used Jeffery Dahmer, a mass murder and cannibal to represent the relative, subjective example of morality.

That's way more insulting that any perceived slur you could possibly interpret. Yet I've responded seriously.

I can't help but feel you're doing this in some way to avoid defending an objective morality.

Anyways I'm pretty confused but if you want to ban me okie dokie.

Fred said...

That's way more insultingThat's just Stan's personal set of rules. What's the problem?

Stan said...

godless,
You are right; I did misread the intent of your "asshole" comments.

Go ahead with your conversation.

Sorry.

Stan

Stan said...

Godless,
Now please give your specifric principle which nails down the behavior which you call, "asshole". Is this a behavior which can be codified so that all people can understand what "assholism" constitutes? Or is it decided on the fly, by the dominant Relativist at the scene?

Fred said...

Stan said....

Godless,
Now please give your specific principle which nails down the behaviour which you call, so and so.


Why would it even matter? That's just his opinion.

Stan said...

Well, godless claims to have principles; he claims the term "asshole" as a metric. That term is too vague, and has no meaning without clarification as a metric for his principles. If a person claims principles, then specifics are required in order to know how to judge behavior against those principles. "Asshole" is not a metric, it is a pejorative label given based on some other, hidden metric being used to judge behavior.

godless needs to give us more than pejorative labels, if he is to actually defend his position. Again, is there an objective behavior set which defines the morals of the person being labelled "asshole", or is the label decided without metrics, on the fly, based on the temporal opinion of the Relativist? (Essentially without actual reasons).

godless is up at bat.

godless said...

Why would it even matter? That's just his opinion.

So you don't think opinions matter?

Like I explained before, just because morality is relative, doesn't mean that there is no basis for standards. The standards are just necessarily subjective.

Now please give your specifric principle which nails down the behavior which you call, "asshole". Is this a behavior which can be codified so that all people can understand what "assholism" constitutes? Or is it decided on the fly, by the dominant Relativist at the scene?

Really. You want me to explain what it means to be an asshole. You can't possibly be serious.

I thought we were actually making some head way here. You put forth cannibalism as what I assumed would be an objective evil, and I responded with a scenario in which I would accept cannibalism as a good. Demonstrating the reality of no-objective morality.

And .. you just ignore it.
You repeatedly ignore the Burden of Rebuttle to argue for an objective morality.

I'm out. I'll come back when you want to have a serious discussion.

Stan said...

godless says,

"Why would it even matter? That's just his opinion.

So you don't think opinions matter? "


So justice is merely an opinion, not a matter of definable fairness?

Like I explained before, just because morality is relative, doesn't mean that there is no basis for standards. The standards are just necessarily subjective. “

And I replied that standards cannot be subjective, and that principles are laws, contrary to your own opinion. That is why opinions don’t matter. If your opinion is that right is wrong, or wrong is right, or there is no right or wrong, or all actions are right, then your opinion is dangerous. Your principles are actually merely opinions, opinions which you will not even list as principles.

”Now please give your specifric principle which nails down the behavior which you call, "asshole". Is this a behavior which can be codified so that all people can understand what "assholism" constitutes? Or is it decided on the fly, by the dominant Relativist at the scene?

Really. You want me to explain what it means to be an asshole. You can't possibly be serious.”


Yes. I am dead serious. If you are going to place moral judgment on me, based merely on your opinion, which you label “asshole”, then you either have behaviors in mind which constitute “assholism”, or if not, then you make moral judgment based on absolutely nothing whatsoever other than your emotional need to degrade others.

“I thought we were actually making some head way here. You put forth cannibalism as what I assumed would be an objective evil, and I responded with a scenario in which I would accept cannibalism as a good. Demonstrating the reality of no-objective morality. “

No, I did not. I put forth Dahmerism, the idea of the Void as morality, the ultimate freedom of Atheism and evolution, taken as moral opinion.

”And .. you just ignore it.”

Here’s the actual conversation:
You:
”We condemn the activity of Dahmer based on our relative, subjective valuation of human life. Ie, we value it, and don't want people to eat us, hence when people eat other people, we condemn them.

It's complicated stuff I know. /s

By contrast, I do not condemn the folks the movie Alive was based on. They ate people sure, but it was necessary for their survival. They didn't sacrifice people...

So is cannibalism really objectively absolutely wrong? Nope. Not in my subjective, relativistic view.”


Stan:
”Then neither is capturing your homosexual partner du jour, and cannibalizing him and as many subsequent ones as needed to get through life, unless you draw an actual principle to oppose it.

You:

””Compare this to the religious fairy tale that all sins are forgiven by accepting Jesus as your master. Yep, Dahmer goes to heaven because you told god he was soooo sorry. Boo hoo I'll never eat another person again Jesus.””

Stan:

”Actually, compare Dahmer’s Atheist belief system and subsequent “freedom from absolutes” with your relativist system which allows any activity so long as your perception of it is just fine. Dahmer’s relativist perception and consideration allowed him a quite a number of meals before he was subjected to (temporarily) absolute laws of the land.”

Stan said...

(Continued from above)
You took the conversation into the weeds by choosing NOT to discuss the belief system: Dahmerism, but to discuss the particular action, cannibalism. You ignored the murder of the victims and the justification of that under the Void of Atheism, and the Principle of Evolution.

IF you have no actual firm principle under which to reject Dahmerism, each and every time it arises, THEN you cannot say that Dahmerism is not "good" under some opinion.

”You repeatedly ignore the Burden of Rebuttle to argue for an objective morality.”

The subject is Atheist use of personal opinion to pass judgment; I have rebutted that, and will continue to rebut that.

”I'm out. I'll come back when you want to have a serious discussion.”

You have claimed “principles” for Relativism; you have been challenged to state those principles; you have not done so. You have been given Dahmerism as an example of morals being determined by personal opinion; you take that as an insult and do not address Dahmerism as a subject. Those points are the discussion. My personal moral theory is not the subject here, and your demand to attack that rather than to answer for your own Atheist moral theory is a Red Herring, and an intellectual failure to pursue your own assertions with actual meaningful explanations.

To repeat your own position as you stated it above:

godless said:

” The point I made was that simply because you don't see a source for objective, ultimate morality (at least certainly not via the mythology of religion) does not mean one is absent principles.

Refuting this statement by yourself

Relativists have no principles upon which to condemn any possible human activity.

prin•ci•ple   [prin-suh-puhl]
noun
1.
an accepted or professed rule of action or conduct: a person of good moral principles.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/principle”


RULE OF ACTION OR CONDUCT! It is in your own definition. So what are your rules of action or conduct??

I say that you actually do have absolute rules, and that one of them is this: It is always wrong to murder innocent people in order to eat them.

But you avoid saying that, don't you? I think that is because if you actually say that, then you have to defend it as an absolute, not an opinion, and that puts the lie to Relativism.

That is what you evade as not being serious enough conversation for your taste.

godless said...

It is always wrong to murder innocent people in order to eat them.

Yes, that is indeed my opinion.

I did address this. You quoted me.

”We condemn the activity of Dahmer based on our relative, subjective valuation of human life. Ie, we value it, and don't want people to eat us, hence when people eat other people, we condemn them.

Remember reciprocal altruism?

Am I missing something? All these things you are accusing me of avoiding have been covered several times.

You know what would immediately negate a subjective morality? Evidence of an objective morality. Which you refuse to discuss. It is not a Red Herring.

ass·hole/ˈasˌhōl/
Noun:
vulgar. The anus.
vulgar. An irritating or contemptible person.

Stan said...

”It is always wrong to murder innocent people in order to eat them.

Yes, that is indeed my opinion. “


OK, then. You admit to a firm absolute rule, objectively measurable, which objectively differentiates an immoral action from moral actions.

”I did address this. You quoted me.

”We condemn the activity of Dahmer based on our relative, subjective valuation of human life. Ie, we value it, and don't want people to eat us, hence when people eat other people, we condemn them.”


This is an absolute statement, made absolutely and representing all relativists (“we”); therefore it is not a Relativist statement, is it? You have declared an absolute moral principle. You want us to think that the reason for the absolute rule has something to do with Relativism, yet the fact is that it is an absolute statement, in the form of a Law of Moral Behavior.

”Remember reciprocal altruism? “

Of course I do. Are you asserting it as an absolute Law of Moral Behavior, too? Even though it is selfish and not even altruistic?

”Am I missing something? All these things you are accusing me of avoiding have been covered several times. “

Here is what you are missing: you assert Relativism on the one hand, but you defend it with absolutism, which renders the Relativist assertions false. But you deny the absolutism, which renders your entire position doubly non-coherent.

”You know what would immediately negate a subjective morality? Evidence of an objective morality. Which you refuse to discuss. It is not a Red Herring.”

Of course it is. Argue your actual case, Relativism, without the use of absolute principles; that is what I am doing. Your position was that Relativism has principles which are not absolute. That is what you must defend.

”ass•hole/ˈasˌhōl/
Noun:
vulgar. The anus.
vulgar. An irritating or contemptible person.”


Without defining the necessary and sufficient conditions for irritation or contemptibility, this is non-discriminating, making no actual measurable distinction for purposes of moral evaluation. And if it is immoral merely to appear irritating to you, or contemptible to you, then your morality is dangerous to everyone who is not you.

Why you cannot see that is a mystery, but it appears to reveal a psychological blind spot in Relativism.

Try again.

godless said...

Yes, that is indeed my opinion. “

OK, then. You admit to a firm absolute rule, objectively measurable, which objectively differentiates an immoral action from moral actions.


A firm rule, grounded in my subjective valuation and preferences. NOT an objective descriptive fact of reality. Is this rule subject to change via new information? Certainly. Is it likely? No.

Furthermore, you've attempted to stack the deck by including the word "innocent". Innocent is necessarily a subjectively defined term.

I guess you don't have any issue with devouring people you find guilty?

This is an absolute statement, made absolutely and representing all relativists (“we”); therefore it is not a Relativist statement, is it?

By "we" I meant society in general. Please don't skew what I say. If you are not sure, ask.

And if it is immoral merely to appear irritating to you, or contemptible to you, then your morality is dangerous to everyone who is not you.

Yes, to me. Things are not objectively irritating. Irritating is a personally defined standard.

In what way does this make me dangerous? You are the one, if you recall, who has declared war. I've made no such aggressive declarations. It would seem if anything, you are the danger.

Stan said...

godless says,

Yes, that is indeed my opinion. “

OK, then. You admit to a firm absolute rule, objectively measurable, which objectively differentiates an immoral action from moral actions.

A firm rule, grounded in my subjective valuation and preferences. NOT an objective descriptive fact of reality. Is this rule subject to change via new information? Certainly. Is it likely? No.’


How are we to know when your subjective valuation which you refer to as a principle, will change upon “new information”? What signal will you give that it is now OK to murder me and eat my corpse? Or is there no signal inherent in your subjective valuation system? Will we need to guess at whether you have new information and that the principle, the rule, which is not objective fact, has changed?

And if it depends only upon your subjective valuation and preferences, then how are the valuations arrived at, and upon what are they based? And where are your preferences listed as moral tenets, so that we know what your morals actually are? And how often do your preferences and valuations change, and what is it that changes them?

Most importantly, why would your valuations and preferences be of any value to anyone else? If they are not, then why call them morals?

”Furthermore, you've attempted to stack the deck by including the word "innocent". Innocent is necessarily a subjectively defined term.

I guess you don't have any issue with devouring people you find guilty?”


I added the term “innocent” at the last minute because I could see you wanting to debate that issue as part of your system of excuses. It clarifies a specific instance which requires either a moral decision, or an abandonment of moral decisions.
(continued)

Stan said...

(from above)
”This is an absolute statement, made absolutely and representing all relativists (“we”); therefore it is not a Relativist statement, is it?

By "we" I meant society in general. Please don't skew what I say. If you are not sure, ask.’


So it's still not relativist, now it is universal for all society; interesting.

I felt certain that you would not make the mistake of speaking for every human; I was wrong, apparently. So now that you have cleared up that you actually are speaking for all humans, your assertion will need evidence to back it up. Yes, I will need to ask you what you mean, because so far your assertions are contradictory. Is your moral system specific to your personal valuations and opinions as you claim, or is your moral system based on universal principles, as you claim?

”And if it is immoral merely to appear irritating to you, or contemptible to you, then your morality is dangerous to everyone who is not you.

Yes, to me. Things are not objectively irritating. Irritating is a personally defined standard.’


Then your use of the term “asshole” has no moral meaning to anyone but yourself, and consequently neither does any personally defined “principle” which you declare to be “moral”. Further, your condemnation of someone based on your personal emotional pique and peeves is capricious and dangerous, because to you it is a moral position, and moral positions have consequences. So your pique and peeves have consequences, which are unstated and therefore can be presumed hazardous to whoever aroused your emotional pique.

”In what way does this make me dangerous? You are the one, if you recall, who has declared war. I've made no such aggressive declarations. It would seem if anything, you are the danger.”

Your position of declaring morality to be exactly your own personal opinion and nothing more, renders you to be a self-authorized judge/jury on all actions, universally. My reactive declaration is in self-defense against your aggressive co-option of me into your tribe, where you, personally, determine what are morals and what are not. You may not include me under your moral system by fiat. That you presumed the ability to determine my morals and affiliation makes you hazardous to my personal freedom to determine such things for myself. Further, that makes you a hazard to anyone in the world who doesn’t want to be in your personal tribe and values freedom from your dictation of your moral system, which is just your opinion.

When you get around to the concept that morals come with consequences, then you will have placed yourself in the position of determining the consequences for infractions of your personal opinions. Without consequences, morals don’t exist, they are merely swell ideas somebody has regarding other people’s behavior. While this might be OK with you, it will not fly far.

godless said...

How are we to know when your subjective valuation which you refer to as a principle, will change upon “new information”?

Irrelevant to the truth of relative morals. Appeal to consequences.

I added the term “innocent” at the last minute because I could see you wanting to debate that issue as part of your system of excuses.

Loaded language. By inserting the term "innocent", I must assume by definition this person is not deserving of having violence done to them. You might as well have asked if it was always wrong to let the guilty go unpunished. That's practically a tautological moral statement.

So it's still not relativist, now it is universal for all society; interesting.

So "society in general" now means universal for all society; interesting. Oh wait, no you are just skewing my words again. Classy.

Oh but you want evidence to back up my statement? Shall I list all human societies that have outlawed cannibalism? Shall I list all the tribes that once practiced cannibalism? Is the shift not an example of evolving subjective morality?

Please Stan. You dived from decent conversation straight back into polemics.

Your position of declaring morality to be exactly your own personal opinion and nothing more, renders you to be a self-authorized judge/jury on all actions, universally. My reactive declaration is in self-defense against your aggressive co-option of me into your tribe, where you, personally, determine what are morals and what are not.

My morality is determined by me, yes. Yours is determined by you. We can either discuss the merits of either system or go to war. I want to talk, you want to go to war.

You are the crazy dangerous person. Unless, under your moral system, the systematic slaughter of a group of people for a personal belief is NOT immoral? Oh, but we won't talk about your beliefs, after all this blog is about atheism.
It doesn't matter anyways, you're just appealing to the consequences again.

When you get around to the concept that morals come with consequences, then you will have placed yourself in the position of determining the consequences for infractions of your personal opinions.

I never said morals did not come with consequences. Nice straw man though.

Look, why don't you get back to me when you want respond not loaded with polemics, hyperbole and fallacies.

Fred said...

godless said....
Mymorality is determined by me,yes.


then i can never be held accountable for what i do to you, since your morality doesn't apply to me.

Stan said...

”How are we to know when your subjective valuation which you refer to as a principle, will change upon “new information”?

Irrelevant to the truth of relative morals. Appeal to consequences.”


False. No appeal to anything other than a request for an answer. Your evasion is your answer: we cannot know unless you inform us. But you do not even inform us of the original moral tenet set, so you are not likely to inform us of a change to that set. In fact, that set probably doesn’t exist despite the claim of having “principles” which are not laws. So it is not possible to know what your morals are, if any, at a given time. This is a fact.

”I added the term “innocent” at the last minute because I could see you wanting to debate that issue as part of your system of excuses.

Loaded language. By inserting the term "innocent", I must assume by definition this person is not deserving of having violence done to them. You might as well have asked if it was always wrong to let the guilty go unpunished. That's practically a tautological moral statement. “


It is exactly the specific situation which Dahmer faced and made moral decisions using his own relativist opinion. You cannot delegitimize discussion of actual Relativist events by criticizing the question regarding them. Your dodge collapses and fails.

”So it's still not relativist, now it is universal for all society; interesting.

So "society in general" now means universal for all society; interesting. Oh wait, no you are just skewing my words again. Classy.”


So now it is not universal, it is merely some unstated portion of society? “Society in general”, if not a universal term, is meaningless. If you don't want your universal terms interpreted as universal, then you should be specific and not universal.

”Oh but you want evidence to back up my statement? Shall I list all human societies that have outlawed cannibalism? Shall I list all the tribes that once practiced cannibalism? Is the shift not an example of evolving subjective morality?”

Of course subjective morality changes (!); that is the problem. And the “outlawing” of a practice seems to make it absolute, right? Unless of course the option to return to the practice must be kept open, because it is subjectively held.

”Please Stan. You dived from decent conversation straight back into polemics.”

I don’t think you know what “polemic” refers to; when you make assertions that raise questions, you would rather deride the question than answer it. To you, the term “polemics” seems to be merely derision in order to avoid facing the question. And “decent conversation” seems to mean “don’t question my assertions”.

po•lem•ic/pəˈlemik/ Noun:

1.A strong verbal or written attack on someone or something.
2.The art or practice of engaging in controversial debate or dispute.


This is not a happy-chat room, it is an analytical blog regarding Atheism. If you choose not to engage in the rigorous analysis of your own assertions, then you should not be making them here. This is the intended character and nature of this blog; complaining about that is useless.
(continued)

Stan said...

”'Your position of declaring morality to be exactly your own personal opinion and nothing more, renders you to be a self-authorized judge/jury on all actions, universally. My reactive declaration is in self-defense against your aggressive co-option of me into your tribe, where you, personally, determine what are morals and what are not.'

My morality is determined by me, yes. Yours is determined by you. We can either discuss the merits of either system or go to war. I want to talk, you want to go to war.


OK, now we are finally getting someplace. If your morals allow you to declare my morals to be false, evil, and punishable, then your morals are a hazard to me and my morals, and I must defend myself. This is exactly the case with a great many Atheists, who make up their own morals and wish to eliminate those morals with which they conflict. If all personal moral systems are equal, then chaos is guaranteed, because no common system of behavior exists.

”You are the crazy dangerous person. Unless, under your moral system, the systematic slaughter of a group of people for a personal belief is NOT immoral? Oh, but we won't talk about your beliefs, after all this blog is about atheism.”

Yes, it is about Atheism and its consequences, which you are illuminating.

”It doesn't matter anyways, you're just appealing to the consequences again.”

You do not accept the analysis of the consequences of your assertion? That is not what is meant by “Appeal to Consequences Fallacy”. You are misusing the fallacy to avoid discussing the consequences of your assertion. Consequences of an assertion are fair game. Read fallacy files for the actual definition.

Further, the purpose of moral theory is precisely to produce consequences which the moral theorist declares to be “good”, after first defining his concept of “good”. So with this understanding, your assertion of Relativism fails to qualify as even moral theory, because you have not and cannot define “good”, except as relative to your own volatile opinion; so your behaviors cannot be known in advance. Even to yourself.

When you get around to the concept that morals come with consequences, then you will have placed yourself in the position of determining the consequences for infractions of your personal opinions.

I never said morals did not come with consequences. Nice straw man though.”


And immediately above you tried to misuse the “Appeal to Consequences Fallacy” to imply that discussing consequences is illogical. So you have also misused “Straw Man Fallacy” as well. That’s two for two.

Look, why don't you get back to me when you want respond not loaded with polemics, hyperbole and fallacies.

Whenever you actually respond to legitimate questions regarding Relativist moral theory, the discussion can continue full blast. That you don’t like the questions does not make them illegitimate. In fact, that you don’t like the questions suggests that they actually are legitimate, and that you know that the answers are damaging. So the common Atheist avoidance mechanism kicks in.

To summarize, you have not answered the questions; you charge fallacies that do not exist; you object to polemics on a site devoted to polemic discussion and argumentation; you dodge and weave regarding the consequences of your personal moral theory; you cannot predict your own behaviors in advance under your Relativism; you apparently see no problem with this.

godless said...

Of course subjective morality changes (!); that is the problem.

The issue is that subjective morality accurately describes ethical behaviors.

This is contrasted by objective morality, which has no objective basis, rendering it incomprehensible.

My use of polemics is accurate because you insist on appealing to charged extraneous issues rather than discussing the core issue, which is either morality is subjective, or not.

Nor am I misusing Straw Man. You assigned to me an viewpoint which I did not state, for the sheer ease of delegitimization what I am saying. That is a Straw Man.

If you want to societal outcomes of those who claim objective vs subjective morality, we can do that too.

But let's at least try and keep the discussion on track.

”How are we to know when your subjective valuation which you refer to as a principle, will change upon “new information”?

You can base it on prior experience. For example, am I the type to declare war on someone for having a different belief set? If I am not, it seems unlikely for me to declare such in the future.

If your morals allow you to declare my morals to be false, evil, and punishable, then your morals are a hazard to me and my morals, and I must defend myself.

Well I don't know what your moral are now do I? If you are the sort to declare war over internet arguments, then I confess my internal moral compass points to you being "wrong".

Am I missing anything? I do not want to be accused of dodging. Maybe give me a point form list.

Stan said...

Godless,

Here are some possibilities; feel free to refute them one-by-one, and then give your actual explanation for your system of moral behavior:

1. IF you consider Relativist morals to be “good”, THEN you have a definition of “good”, which is variable and relativist, changing with the variability of your personal opinion.

2. IF your Relativist morals have consequences which you consider to be “good”, THEN, EITHER you actually do have a definition of “good” consequences, OR, you define “good” on the fly, OR, you consider your actions, however you decide to act, to be "good", tautologically.

3. IF you define “good” on the fly, THEN EITHER you have a principle for finding “good” in a situation OR, you do not have such a principle.

4. IF you have a principle for finding “good” in a situation, THEN you have the basis for a definition of “good”; IF you have such a basis, THEN your moral system is not relative because it is based on an absolute.

5. IF you do not have a principle for finding “good” in a situation, THEN your concept of “good” is EITHER random and without disciplined structure or basis (non-existent), OR it is emotionally based and not rational. IF you have no basis other than emotion, THEN your basis is dependent upon hormonal fluctuations.

Don't bother with your standard dodges, just refute or accept.

Stan said...

”Of course subjective morality changes (!); that is the problem.

The issue is that subjective morality accurately describes ethical behaviors. “


Ah. So it is purely descriptive, not prescriptive. That makes it a sociological study rather than a theory of “good” and moral behaviors. So no wonder this conversation seems so strange: you are not discussing morals, you are discussing observations of how people behave.

”This is contrasted by objective morality, which has no objective basis, rendering it incomprehensible.”

Actually it is contrasted with actual prescriptive theories of moral behavior, including all 91 ethics described in Wiki.

”My use of polemics is accurate because you insist on appealing to charged extraneous issues rather than discussing the core issue, which is either morality is subjective, or not.”

That would be Red Herring: support your accusation with specifics or retract it.

”Nor am I misusing Straw Man. You assigned to me an viewpoint which I did not state, for the sheer ease of delegitimization what I am saying. That is a Straw Man.”

Absolutely, demonstrably false: I did not assign a viewpoint; I said when you get around to consequences… on the assumption that you would. FALSE.

”If you want to societal outcomes of those who claim objective vs subjective morality, we can do that too. “

If by that you mean to declare objective morals to have “badness” rather than “goodness” attached to them, you must first define “badness” and “goodness”. You refuse to do that, so you cannot judge them under your personal Relativist opinion. If you attempt to do so, you will be trapped by your own lack of firm definitions, and your reliance on mere opinion.

”But let's at least try and keep the discussion on track”

Sure. Answer the questions.

”How are we to know when your subjective valuation which you refer to as a principle, will change upon “new information”?

You can base it on prior experience. For example, am I the type to declare war on someone for having a different belief set? If I am not, it seems unlikely for me to declare such in the future.”

Good. Good. So we must place a probability on your variability, based on your history of moral decisions. I have asked for your moral history and your moral tenets before in a similar context: where is the repository of your ethical decisions, and the conditions which produced them? Without that, we cannot know anything about your morals or your actions in lieu of morals, except that you wish to attack Christianity and are not allowed to do so under the operating rules of this blog. So it can be thought probable that you have a firm attack position which you wish to engage against Christianity and Christians.
(continued below)

Stan said...

”If your morals allow you to declare my morals to be false, evil, and punishable, then your morals are a hazard to me and my morals, and I must defend myself.

Well I don't know what your moral are now do I? “


Of course, you don’t need to know that in order to understand the issue. However, it is interesting that you seem to entertain the possibility. The question is hypothetical (“if”). Let me restate it for you:

IF: the subjective Relativist moral opinion of person Q allows person Q to declare Person Y’s morals to be false, evil, and punishable, even though Y’s morals are also subjective, Relativist moral opinions, THEN: person Q’s morals are a hazard to person Y, and person Y must defend himself from person Q.

Under the personal variability of Relativism (especially the non-prescriptive form you now advocate for) there are no constraints to prevent this, and there is no reason to assume that the possibility is not a probability in terms of needing to defend from it.

You for example , have both affirmed and denied the universal aspects of Relativist morals, and then have redefined them as descriptive rather than prescriptive. You have steadfastly declined to list your moral tenets or how you actually behaved in moral situations, yet you claim that we should base our trust on your moral history. Apparently non-coherence is right in line with Relativism.

”If you are the sort to declare war over internet arguments, then I confess my internal moral compass points to you being "wrong".”

Yes, for the Relativist, defending oneself from the Relativist would be “relativistically” wrong. I see exactly how that works.

And: “internal moral compass”? Would you care to share the data which is embedded in your internal moral compass? Is it fixed? Or is it Relativistic?

”Am I missing anything? I do not want to be accused of dodging. Maybe give me a point form list. “

I will list it for you if you don’t answer the questions. The common response to that is "Gishing", so you can see that I am prepared for any response at all.

godless said...

The issue is that subjective morality accurately describes ethical behaviors. “

Ah. So it is purely descriptive, not prescriptive. That makes it a sociological study rather than a theory of “good” and moral behaviors. So no wonder this conversation seems so strange: you are not discussing morals, you are discussing observations of how people behave.


Yes, I think this nails it.

Does this resolve any of your previous issues?

godless said...

1. IF you consider Relativist morals to be “good”, THEN you have a definition of “good”, which is variable and relativist, changing with the variability of your personal opinion.

As per the previous post, I believe subjective morality to be an accurate description of ethical systems. It is neither good nor bad. Ought from an is and all that.

2. IF your Relativist morals have consequences which you consider to be “good”, THEN, EITHER you actually do have a definition of “good” consequences, OR, you define “good” on the fly, OR, you consider your actions, however you decide to act, to be "good", tautologically.

Of course my personal morality has consequences. As per reciprocal altruism, if you choose to violate the terms of the agreement (be an asshole) you will be shunned from my company. This barely scratches the surface of course, but I hope it is enlightening.

3. IF you define “good” on the fly, THEN EITHER you have a principle for finding “good” in a situation OR, you do not have such a principle.

"Good" is subjective and contrasted by "bad". Good things are that which we desire. Bad things are that which we would like to avoid.

4. IF you have a principle for finding “good” in a situation, THEN you have the basis for a definition of “good”; IF you have such a basis, THEN your moral system is not relative because it is based on an absolute.

"That which we desire" is most certainly relative. Yet it is also a standard for determining "good". Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Health, wisdom, truth, success can be included as well. I'm sure this is not an exhaustive description, but again I hope you get the idea.

5. IF you do not have a principle for finding “good” in a situation, THEN your concept of “good” is EITHER random and without disciplined structure or basis (non-existent), OR it is emotionally based and not rational. IF you have no basis other than emotion, THEN your basis is dependent upon hormonal fluctuations.

I hope I have accurately articulated how you can tend to determine what is good.

godless said...

I have asked for your moral history and your moral tenets before in a similar context: where is the repository of your ethical decisions, and the conditions which produced them?

And of course I have repeatedly presented reciprocal altruism as a basis for ethical behavior.

So it can be thought probable that you have a firm attack position which you wish to engage against Christianity and Christians.

Well I do of course. My attack position is that theists at large claim objective morality but operate under a demonstrably subjective morality. Furthermore the claims of an objective morality stemming from a deity merely reduce objective morality to equate to "the subjective morality of the most dominant deity."

I mean, that's just scratching the surface. But we aren't going to attack Christianity here.

IF: the subjective Relativist moral opinion of person Q allows person Q to declare Person Y’s morals to be false, evil, and punishable, even though Y’s morals are also subjective, Relativist moral opinions, THEN: person Q’s morals are a hazard to person Y, and person Y must defend himself from person Q.

Shrug, yeah I suppose you are correct there. Although I don't see a difference between stating this as subjective or objective moral opinions.

I would agree the morality of Dahmer vs society (for example) creates a hazard for both parties.

Please note I never called your morality false, evil nor destined for punishment.

Yes, for the Relativist, defending oneself from the Relativist would be “relativistically” wrong. I see exactly how that works.

No idea what you are saying here. I'm just saying a declaration of intent to harm or murder of an internet argument is both childish and yes, wrong. Hm, yes I'll go out on a limb and call this wrong. You respond to words with a declaration of violence. This is "bad".

Subjectively of course. You apparently think it good. That makes me wonder if you are crazy. But I think you are just being polemic.

Still missing anything?

Stan said...

”The issue is that subjective morality accurately describes ethical behaviors. “

Ah. So it is purely descriptive, not prescriptive. That makes it a sociological study rather than a theory of “good” and moral behaviors. So no wonder this conversation seems so strange: you are not discussing morals, you are discussing observations of how people behave.

Yes, I think this nails it.

Does this resolve any of your previous issues? “


No. Why do you want a sociological study considered to be a morality? This is actually bizarre. The definition of a morality is that it gives prescriptions for personal character development and places restrictions on behaviors. Your sociological study goes the other direction and endorses any behaviors which some "ethic" somewhere considers acceptable. This is internally contradictory because some ethics (Consequentialism for example) contradict other ethics (Virtue ethics, for example). Being internally contradictory renders Relativism irrational.

”’1. IF you consider Relativist morals to be “good”, THEN you have a definition of “good”, which is variable and relativist, changing with the variability of your personal opinion.’

As per the previous post, I believe subjective morality to be an accurate description of ethical systems. It is neither good nor bad. Ought from an is and all that.”


So the obvious and overt contradiction between ethical systems is not a problem, because you accept contradiction as part of your particular sociological study result? You have no issue with the unpredictability of behaviors and the huge conflict which will result? You seemingly have no intention having predictable and consistent behaviors?

” ‘2. IF your Relativist morals have consequences which you consider to be “good”, THEN, EITHER you actually do have a definition of “good” consequences, OR, you define “good” on the fly, OR, you consider your actions, however you decide to act, to be "good", tautologically.’

Of course my personal morality has consequences. As per reciprocal altruism, if you choose to violate the terms of the agreement (be an asshole) you will be shunned from my company. This barely scratches the surface of course, but I hope it is enlightening.”


Agreement? There now is a contract? That is in no way part of even what you previously defined as “reciprocal altruism”, which is not altruism at all. Under the Golden Rule, which you quote, there is no contract at all. It defines how you are to act, and the metric to be used, not a contract. You have refused to comprehend that in the past, and now you are defining it even further as an agreement or compact. It is in no way an agreement.
(continued below)

Stan said...

”’3. IF you define “good” on the fly, THEN EITHER you have a principle for finding “good” in a situation OR, you do not have such a principle.’

"Good" is subjective and contrasted by "bad". Good things are that which we desire. Bad things are that which we would like to avoid.”


Finally(!), a concept of good/bad which we can discuss. Now you are asserting the “Desirist” Ethic, which I feel confirms your dangerousness via your worldview. If whatever you desire is “good”, then good is merely your emotion of greed. Perhaps you’ll claim that you desire world peace. But in actuality shouldn't I suspect strongly that you actually desire to deceive those you interface with in order to ease your access to what you really desire (whatever that is). The safe bet is the second. For all I know your actual desire is to eliminate all non-Atheists. And your actions are not predictable, so there is no trust to be had in our relationship.

Even worse is your use of the term “we”, where it can be presumed that you are taking some portion of the population (not all, as you have admonished above) and using their desires to define “good”. That will no doubt work against the desires of the rest of us, as does Virtue Ethics, etc.

Further still, if you really define "bad" as that which "we" wish to avoid, then for the general population, Atheism and Atheists would necessarily be bad, since the general population doesn't trust and wishes to avoid them.

So this concept of good/bad doesn't work, even for Atheist Relativists.

”4. IF you have a principle for finding “good” in a situation, THEN you have the basis for a definition of “good”; IF you have such a basis, THEN your moral system is not relative because it is based on an absolute.

"That which we desire" is most certainly relative. Yet it is also a standard for determining "good". Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Health, wisdom, truth, success can be included as well. I'm sure this is not an exhaustive description, but again I hope you get the idea.”


Again, a "standard" which is relative. Godless, that is absurd, a contradiction of terms.

If the things you desire, above, are good, then they are good, period If they are relative, then they don’t matter unless specifically situationally congenial as designated by some Relativist, some time, some where. At other times, unpredictable of course, they are not congenial and are not part of the moral consideration as being “good”, under Relativism.

Do you not see the problem with this?

”5. IF you do not have a principle for finding “good” in a situation, THEN your concept of “good” is EITHER random and without disciplined structure or basis (non-existent), OR it is emotionally based and not rational. IF you have no basis other than emotion, THEN your basis is dependent upon hormonal fluctuations.

I hope I have accurately articulated how you can tend to determine what is good. “


But you have NOT done that; you have articulated that those things might be good under some Relativist condition and not under others, because the “standard” is relative! So it is NOT "good" you have determined, it is a fog of uncertainty and inability to actually define what is actually Good.
(continued below)

Stan said...

”’I have asked for your moral history and your moral tenets before in a similar context: where is the repository of your ethical decisions, and the conditions which produced them? ‘

And of course I have repeatedly presented reciprocal altruism as a basis for ethical behavior.


You have not answered the question: asserting RA is not a history for us to use in order to comprehend your actual behaviors.

And now you have defined RA as some sort of contractual agreement, a concept completely outside the concept of altruism in any possible conception, and more like a social or even legal contract, which is binding, and if violated, results in the condemnation of “assholism” and banishment or whatever your punishment du jour might be.

You have not defined any behavior which is independent of the payback from the other party, or which is character defining, or which defines behaviors when not being watched. This is not independent moral behavior, it is Consequentialism disguised as faux altruism.

”So it can be thought probable that you have a firm attack position which you wish to engage against Christianity and Christians.

Well I do of course. My attack position is that theists at large claim objective morality but operate under a demonstrably subjective morality. Furthermore the claims of an objective morality stemming from a deity merely reduce objective morality to equate to "the subjective morality of the most dominant deity.

I mean, that's just scratching the surface. But we aren't going to attack Christianity here. "


I think your use of the term “objective” is incorrect, but that’s for another day, and a different blog.

”IF: the subjective Relativist moral opinion of person Q allows person Q to declare Person Y’s morals to be false, evil, and punishable, even though Y’s morals are also subjective, Relativist moral opinions, THEN: person Q’s morals are a hazard to person Y, and person Y must defend himself from person Q.

Shrug, yeah I suppose you are correct there. Although I don't see a difference between stating this as subjective or objective moral opinions.

I would agree the morality of Dahmer vs society (for example) creates a hazard for both parties.

Please note I never called your morality false, evil nor destined for punishment. .”


But you did assign “assholism” and rejection to the party who broke the RA compact.
(continued below)

Stan said...

”Yes, for the Relativist, defending oneself from the Relativist would be “relativistically” wrong. I see exactly how that works.

No idea what you are saying here. I'm just saying a declaration of intent to harm or murder of an internet argument is both childish and yes, wrong. Hm, yes I'll go out on a limb and call this wrong. You respond to words with a declaration of violence. This is "bad". “


But not objectively, absolutely, wrong…. Right? Just in your opinion, right? (But it is OK to shanghai someone into your personal group in order to subject them to your "desires and opinions").

”Subjectively of course. “

Ah! Well of course.

”You apparently think it good.”

Yes, self-defense is, actually, good. Objectively. It is a necessary criterion of Darwinian survival.

”That makes me wonder if you are crazy. But I think you are just being polemic.”

It is a polemic site, remember? If I am crazy, as you persist in accusing, then surely you can point out the instances of internal contradiction when accompanies irrationality? As I have done for you...

Still missing anything?

Here is what I think is missing from your sociological study, and what is necessary in order for it to be a morality:

1. Prescription for personal character development.

2. Consistency and predictability of personal behaviors.

3. Actual selfless altruism, rather than Chicago-style payback faux altruism.

4. Non-Contradiction and coherence.

5. The realization that there are objective goods; you named some yourself: Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Health, wisdom, truth, success; but also peace, happiness, altruism; self defense and kin selection (Darwinian success). And consistency of behaviors in pursuit of good and rejection of bad.

You claimed these as desires. But the reason they are desired is that they are good, in and of themselves, not because they are desired. Desire is not even subjectively a “good” because one can also desire to destroy his neighbor in order to have his wife, etc. Desire does not automatically create good. Desire needs to be tempered by moral constraints which are outside of desire itself, and guided by absolute concepts of "good".

In fact, under Relativism, opinion driven by desire has no constraints which are absolute (or even temporary) limitations on the behaviors of the Relativist. Nor does it have consistent goods for objectives. Without moral constraints, or good/bad guidelines, a sociological study cannot be called a morality.

The Relativist position is blindly idealist by ignoring that greed, lust, Will to Power and other emotions can and will be sometimes more powerful than faux altruism and undefinable personal principles du jour. But without objective goods, then there are no objective bads, either. And this is the fatal defect of Relativism. We cannot even discuss the characteristics of good and bad because they do not exist under Relativism. So there are no actual moral constraints.

So here is why Relativists (and Atheists in general) are not trusted: It is apparent that the Relativist places no limitations upon himself other than his own opinion, driven by his own desires. Opinions and desires are volatile and hormone driven emotions, not rational decisions or moral constraints. Finally, they are demonstrably internally contradictory and therefore not rational.

Do you not see the problem with this?

godless said...

Your sociological study goes the other direction and endorses any behaviors which some "ethic" somewhere considers acceptable.

Okay obviously it doesn't clear anything up.

I am making no claim as to what is acceptable when I say morality is subjective.

What I am saying is that people create morality. It is subjective by this definition.

There is no objective basis for morality, hence it is subjective.

I am not suggesting it as an ethical system. I have put forth RA as the basis for ethical systems. RA is a subjective moral system.

Understand the difference?

You have no issue with the unpredictability of behaviors and the huge conflict which will result?

I did not say that. Neither do I find the behavior of those who I know to be so unpredictable. You can usually judge a persons future behavior on their current behavior.

Subjective does not mean today I wake up and decide rape is okay.

I mean, this is really what it sounds like you are afraid of.

It absurd. Positively absurd. It is also another argument from consequences and has no bearing on the truth of the claims being made.

But not objectively, absolutely, wrong…. Right? Just in your opinion, right? (But it is OK to shanghai someone into your personal group in order to subject them to your "desires and opinions").

1) Yes in my opinion. Maybe everyone even agrees with me.
2) You don't need to be shanghai'd into "my group" for me to have an opinion of you.

Yes, self-defense is, actually, good. Objectively. It is a necessary criterion of Darwinian survival.

>.>

In what possible manner is your survival in jeopardy based on the opinion of someone over the internet? In what possible manner is a declaration of war justified as a response? Is this an example of objective morality?

This is why you sound paranoid/delusional.

Desire is not even subjectively a “good” because one can also desire to destroy his neighbor in order to have his wife, etc.

You are off the rails my war-time opponent. You ignore much of what I say to cast baseless accusations.

Good is contrasted by bad, and tempered by RA. Your conclusion is absurd under the guidelines I have provided.

Just because the site is polemic doesn't mean that you need to ignore what I say to cherry pick accusations and forment misunderstandings.

godless said...

1. Prescription for personal character development.

2. Consistency and predictability of personal behaviors.

3. Actual selfless altruism, rather than Chicago-style payback faux altruism.

4. Non-Contradiction and coherence.


1. I fail to understand how you can reject a combination of empathy, societal expectation and reason as a basis for character development. Ie: RA

2. Sometimes people act in unexpected ways. But usually you can tell how they will act by their previous behaviors. People are generally pretty consistent. Try interacting with them, you'll see.

3. Give me an example of "actual selfless altruism", and I'll put forth how the sacrificer benefits. Yes, feeling happy about a good deed done is a benefit.

4. Well it is pretty clear to me. You seem incredibly insistent on NOT understanding.

So here is why Relativists (and Atheists in general) are not trusted: It is apparent that the Relativist places no limitations upon himself other than his own opinion, driven by his own desires

False, and you have to ignore half of what I've said to even say this with a straight face.

The primary reason atheists are not trusted is xenophobia. A lack of familiarity and understanding of a group not your own.

The demonstration of which is here in spades.

Psalm 14:1: "The fool says in his heart, 'There is no God.' They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds, there is none that does good."

^^ Doesn't help when god is smack talking us either.

Stan said...

”I am not suggesting it as an ethical system. I have put forth RA as the basis for ethical systems. RA is a subjective moral system.”

I suggest that you write out a complete description of what you consider to be RA. Your apparent definition has changed from “a benefactor benefits by feeling good” to “the recipient had better honor his end of the agreement, or be reviled and banished”.

First, define “altruism” as you envision it; if it differs from dictionary definitions, then explain why.

Then explain the “reciprocal” part.

I feel that you misrepresent both concepts in your past comments. But your definitions seem to change and are relative, I guess. Will you nail down your definition?

”You have no issue with the unpredictability of behaviors and the huge conflict which will result?

I did not say that. Neither do I find the behavior of those who I know to be so unpredictable. You can usually judge a persons future behavior on their current behavior.”


Yet you also decline to share a history of your past behavior and claim instead that all we need to know about you is that you claim to endorse RA. Here is the exact exchange, copied from just above:

Stan:
”’I have asked for your moral history and your moral tenets before in a similar context: where is the repository of your ethical decisions, and the conditions which produced them? ‘

godless:
“And of course I have repeatedly presented reciprocal altruism as a basis for ethical behavior.”

You not only endorse inconsistent behavior, you indulge in it.

”Subjective does not mean today I wake up and decide rape is okay.

I mean, this is really what it sounds like you are afraid of.

It absurd. Positively absurd. It is also another argument from consequences and has no bearing on the truth of the claims being made.”


First you claim subjective morality. (Do you want your exact quote?). Then you claim that good = desires. Then you claim that good = RA. What will you claim next? And the discussion is exactly and precisely about the consequences of Relativism; now you want to claim it is about truth of your claims (what truth? They are all relative to the subject making up subjective claims).

”But not objectively, absolutely, wrong…. Right? Just in your opinion, right? (But it is OK to shanghai someone into your personal group in order to subject them to your "desires and opinions").

1) Yes in my opinion. Maybe everyone even agrees with me.”


Why of course they do; everyone thinks just like you.

”2) You don't need to be shanghai'd into "my group" for me to have an opinion of you.”

But you did, and I reacted in self defense.

”Yes, self-defense is, actually, good. Objectively. It is a necessary criterion of Darwinian survival.

>.>

In what possible manner is your survival in jeopardy based on the opinion of someone over the internet? In what possible manner is a declaration of war justified as a response? Is this an example of objective morality?

This is why you sound paranoid/delusional.”


The entire conversation was hypothetical; surely you get that. Good grief. However, since you don’t comprehend the (hypothetical) need to protect myself from your stated (hypothetical) kidnapping into your group, I declared the (hypothetical) need to defend myself from you and your ideological hubris. You apparently do not even comprehend the impact of your own ideology; you think that those who do, and point it out to you, are insane. To you, there is only one rational conclusion, and that is the self-contradictory ideology which you present.
(continued)

Stan said...

”Desire is not even subjectively a “good” because one can also desire to destroy his neighbor in order to have his wife, etc.

You are off the rails my war-time opponent. You ignore much of what I say to cast baseless accusations.

Good is contrasted by bad, and tempered by RA. Your conclusion is absurd under the guidelines I have provided.”


Now you make yet another claim: good is contrasted by bad. Yet you have defined good previously as “desires”. That apparently no longer is the case, because desire is not contrasted well against non-desires, where non-desires are bad in contrast to the desires, which are good.

You change your position in response to criticism; that inconsistency alone is enough to falsify your claims as having any moral value.

”Just because the site is polemic doesn't mean that you need to ignore what I say to cherry pick accusations and forment misunderstandings.”

Really? Comparing your actual statements against each other, showing the lack of moral content, displaying the fallacy of your Chicago-style RA position, these are cherry picking and fomenting?

1. Prescription for personal character development.

”1. I fail to understand how you can reject a combination of empathy, societal expectation and reason as a basis for character development. Ie: RA”

Empathy is a hormone driven emotion, societal expectation has nothing to do with character except possibly fear and cowardice, and reason does not even apply to RA because your concept of RA is Chicago-style self aggrandizement. Stanford.plato even called it “tit for tat”, and not even altruism at all.

”2. Consistency and predictability of personal behaviors.

2. Sometimes people act in unexpected ways. But usually you can tell how they will act by their previous behaviors. People are generally pretty consistent. Try interacting with them, you'll see.”


Then it is not really their history of behavior which you promote? Is that why you don’t give your history for us to determine your types of behaviors? What you are saying now is different: people are pretty consistent; presumably that takes care of not needing their histories?

”3. Actual selfless altruism, rather than Chicago-style payback faux altruism.
(continued)

Stan said...

"3. Give me an example of "actual selfless altruism", and I'll put forth how the sacrificer benefits. Yes, feeling happy about a good deed done is a benefit.”

Example of actual altruism: falling on a grenade to save the rest of the platoon.

”4. Non-Contradiction and coherence.

4. Well it is pretty clear to me. You seem incredibly insistent on NOT understanding.”


Your refusal to address the internal contradictions of your ideology pretty much says it all.

”So here is why Relativists (and Atheists in general) are not trusted: It is apparent that the Relativist places no limitations upon himself other than his own opinion, driven by his own desires

False, and you have to ignore half of what I've said to even say this with a straight face.

The primary reason atheists are not trusted is xenophobia. A lack of familiarity and understanding of a group not your own.”


Bullshit. This is an excuse for not understanding the inability of Atheist/Relativist/Faux RA enthusiasts to produce a coherent, consistent, believable moral theory by which to anticipate future behaviors. You want to deny the fallacies in your own position and place the blame on the other. You cannot support this charge because there are many, many cultures which are well accepted, while Atheism is not.

” The demonstration of which is here in spades.

Psalm 14:1: "The fool says in his heart, 'There is no God.' They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds, there is none that does good."

^^ Doesn't help when god is smack talking us either.”


Earlier you thought that maybe “everyone” agreed with your ideology. Now you are paranoid about a god you don’t believe in. The issue is how do you prove the truth (your word) of your claims, and the absolute harmlessness of your Relativism? What case will you present that shows that you really understand selfless altruism, and believe in it as a moral base?

Because I don’t think that you do believe in selfless altruism, and I think that you have corrupted RA for your own purposes. So why should I trust such a person? That is the actual issue: Make a case for being trustworthy.

godless said...

Hey Stan. I know this can be a really complicated subject. People have been wrestling over what "good" means, and how we should treat each other and similar issues since .. well, since there were people.

I found a couple of books that might break it down easier for you.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0789306840?ie=UTF8&tag=childrens.books.guide-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0789306840

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0312581408?ie=UTF8&tag=childrens.books.guide-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0312581408

Hope that helps!

Stan said...

godless,
You are so confused. I know what "good" is; it is Atheist philosophers who argue about it, and Atheist followers who can't decide what their actual moral theory is who have the problem.

Let me know how the books turn out for you. I can see why you like them though, do you pass them out to your RA congregation? Har!

Have you written your RA manifesto yet? I'm waiting with breath 'bated...

godless said...

I wrote a response to your points before that previous post. I'm going to assume not posting that was an oversight. Correct me if I am wrong.

Yes the books, at least once like it, were passed around in preschool. The "RA congregation". They helped us learn how to act ethically in many social situations. I think that's why it is so hard to explain to a grown person what it means to be good...

I know what "good" is; it is Atheist philosophers who argue about it, and Atheist followers who can't decide what their actual moral theory is who have the problem.

Well I have asked you several times for your source of objective morality. How magnanimous of you to admit you know what is good. Care to enlighten the rest of humanity with your humble wisdom?

But I suppose this is the case with EVERY theist. After all, only atheist philosophers concern themselves with discovering what is "good". Of course you speak for ALL theists, universally.

And since every theist philosopher follows an object morality, all their moral systems must coincide.

So every religion is exactly the same! None argue about what is "good".

The logic speaks for itself folks.

Stan said...

”I wrote a response to your points before that previous post. I'm going to assume not posting that was an oversight. Correct me if I am wrong.”

This has happened before; I post every comment that comes along except for those from banned commenters; please keep a copy of your comment for reposting if it gets lost. Blogger used to occasionally nuke my posts, so I always write in WORD first and copy over to Blogger. I keep the WORD doc until the post has cleared Blogger.

”Yes the books, at least once like it, were passed around in preschool. The "RA congregation". They helped us learn how to act ethically in many social situations. I think that's why it is so hard to explain to a grown person what it means to be good...”

Because the “good” learned in preschool doesn’t translate to mature thinking? That doesn’t make much sense. Mature thinking should trump preschool propaganda.

”I know what "good" is; it is Atheist philosophers who argue about it, and Atheist followers who can't decide what their actual moral theory is who have the problem.

Well I have asked you several times for your source of objective morality. How magnanimous of you to admit you know what is good. Care to enlighten the rest of humanity with your humble wisdom?”


No. But I already did give you some examples previously.

”But I suppose this is the case with EVERY theist. After all, only atheist philosophers concern themselves with discovering what is "good". Of course you speak for ALL theists, universally. “

And of course I did not say that, did I? I said that I know. That’s all.

”And since every theist philosopher follows an object morality, all their moral systems must coincide.

So every religion is exactly the same! None argue about what is "good".”


You are now arguing against ecclesiasticism, and have changed the topic mid-stream. To top it off you make a false statement and make that a premise in a false argument.

”The logic speaks for itself folks.”

Yes, it does. When a false premise is created in order to prove a false point, the logic can speak “false” under scrutiny. But only under actual scrutiny.