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Is morality objective, subjective or something else?
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Jason Tandro
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PostJason Tandro Posted: Wed Nov 02, 2022 10:35 pm   Post subject: Is morality objective, subjective or something else? Reply with quote

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Why not stir the juices of discussion in this simmering cauldron of content? Like all good discussion topics, this one started when I was drinking and playing poker with my housemates. Four shots into an eight shot night we ended up discussing our thoughts on morality, luck and the grand questions of the universe.

Mind you, seven shots into that night we would be arguing how many bacteria were on our respective manhoods, so it wasn't a night all wasted. Drunk

Anyways, my take on it is this. Admittedly the wording for this I'm borrowing (read: stealing) from Matt Dillahunty.

While I don't think there is an objective foundation for morality in the larger sense, I believe that within subjective goals you can make objective decisions about what is and is not conducive to that goal. For instance if your goal is "well-being" we can make an objective determination about what enhances and detracts from well-being. Though there are also certainly subjective arguments as well. Does living a certain lifestyle benefit or hinder "well-being"?

Generally I believe that whatever guarantees the maximum freedom to the most people is generally a good thing so long as that "freedom" does not include actions which could harm others.

Anyway, that's my take on it. How about you all?
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psychokind
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Postpsychokind Posted: Thu Nov 03, 2022 2:28 pm   Post subject: Reply with quote

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oh my debating with jason - makes me feel almost nostalgic Very Happy quite a difficult topic, but one that's quite newsworthy nowadays.

first my take on this (pretty tough in a foreign language):

morality is first and foremost subjective. it becomes somewhat objective when a human group finds common ground on it's basic moralities. easy examples would be killing without necessity or helping others without reward. most often this basic morales find their objectiveness in laws in societies.

we just today had an moral-questioning event taken place in germany (all over the news).
protesters against climate change glued themselves onto roads for several months now. yesterday an ambulance / fire truck couldn't get through to a woman overrun by a cement mixer. the medics and fireman on site didn't get the equipment they needed and the rescue took way longer and was way more complicated than necessary.
today she died.
the clime activists justified their actions (at least before she died) with their goal having higher moral value (fighting against doom caused by pollution) than the thousands of people getting inconvinienced by their gluing to streets. so far, they had loads of supporters and loads of enemies. it will be interesting to see if this changes after today.
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PostJason Tandro Posted: Thu Nov 03, 2022 11:53 pm   Post subject: Reply with quote

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psychokind wrote:
oh my debating with jason - makes me feel almost nostalgic Very Happy


Ah well I'm rather a different person from way back when, and hopefully a bit less of a clod. :haha:

Quote:

morality is first and foremost subjective. it becomes somewhat objective when a human group finds common ground on it's basic moralities. easy examples would be killing without necessity or helping others without reward. most often this basic morales find their objectiveness in laws in societies.


I think we more or less have a similar opinion on this then. While we as people may have vastly different baselines of what we consider moral or immoral, once we have determined an overall moral objective: be it "well-being", "purity", "greater good", etc etc we can make objective determination based on this, at least somewhat.


Quote:

we just today had an moral-questioning event taken place in germany (all over the news).
protesters against climate change glued themselves onto roads for several months now. yesterday an ambulance / fire truck couldn't get through to a woman overrun by a cement mixer. the medics and fireman on site didn't get the equipment they needed and the rescue took way longer and was way more complicated than necessary.
today she died.
the clime activists justified their actions (at least before she died) with their goal having higher moral value (fighting against doom caused by pollution) than the thousands of people getting inconvinienced by their gluing to streets. so far, they had loads of supporters and loads of enemies. it will be interesting to see if this changes after today.


In regards to all of this, I have intensely conflicted feelings about this. First and foremost, it's horrid that this woman died as a result of all of this.

While I can understand the mindset of those who block access to public roads and facilities in an effort to draw attention to their cause, I still find myself annoyed by this manner of protest and if anything it makes me less sympathetic to the plight of those protesting.

It has been said that many times the people who are protesting for civil rights and liberties often find themselves without another means of protest. I would hate to try and tell a member of an oppressed minority that they must protest in this or that manner because I believe it will always violate "Decorum" for the oppressed to speak out.

However, often these protests target not the general perpetrators of the oppression but the layman who often has little if any power over societal change. When it comes down to blocking emergency access, I am firmly against this. Moreover the fact that somebody in my country has legislated that protestors are allowed to bar my access to a location for a set number of seconds sticks in my craw a bit because... well I didn't consent to have my way obstructed.

That said my personal grievances against a protest method are not justifiable cause to deny them outright, and again oftentimes people are left with no other recourse...

However:

I feel like climate protestors go for the most extreme and shocking methods of all. They are not wrong about the effects climate change is having on our planet, but frankly more often than not I find their efforts turn people against them rather than winning hearts and minds. I'm reminded of the "Just Say No To Oil" people or whatever who are protesting climate change by *checks notes* vandalizing art.

Again, does this draw attention to the people in power who could make a change. Hell, does this harm them? If they were targeting the right people, the people in power, I'd be okay with some drastic measures, but again there is this feeling that they are just picking on people who they have access to because directly going after the powerful is a) difficult and b) dangerous.

I mean yeah, if we don't get our climate situation under control (we're already well into climate destabilization so, doomsday clock is tick-tick-ticking) we're royally fucked. But this should have never happened and now all that's likely to happen is conservative voices are going to capitalize on this woman's death to push for stricter laws regarding protest, not to mention win the favor of middle-of-the-road people by saying "you don't want to side with THESE people, do you?"

It's an ugly situation all around.
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Postinferiare Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2022 8:07 am   Post subject: Reply with quote

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This is the sort of stuff that makes sympathetic villains interesting to me.

Morally, it's wrong.

Subjectively, I see why they want to do what they're doing.

Cool motive, still murder (depending on the villain - sometimes it's not murder but something else.)

In the examples given by PK, while yes, protest to your heart's content on things that you feel passionate about, I always feel that inconveniencing others, especially in the way of "well, who cares about one person, our cause affects more than just one person" is always shitty. You'll get more people agreeing with your cause if you don't inconvenience them tbh.
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PostJason Tandro Posted: Mon Nov 07, 2022 1:59 pm   Post subject: Reply with quote

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inferiare wrote:
This is the sort of stuff that makes sympathetic villains interesting to me.

Morally, it's wrong.

Subjectively, I see why they want to do what they're doing.

Cool motive, still murder (depending on the villain - sometimes it's not murder but something else.)


So I agree with all of this.

Quote:

In the examples given by PK, while yes, protest to your heart's content on things that you feel passionate about, I always feel that inconveniencing others, especially in the way of "well, who cares about one person, our cause affects more than just one person" is always shitty. You'll get more people agreeing with your cause if you don't inconvenience them tbh.


And I agree with this, with the caveat that I understand why sometimes people find no other option but inconveniencing people. Particularly for the oppressed. It is very easy for us to turn a blind eye to other peoples suffering without even realizing it. Still there has to be a happy medium that doesn't endanger lives, especially for something like the climate change debate.
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Postinferiare Posted: Wed Nov 09, 2022 8:33 am   Post subject: Reply with quote

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(EDIT: HEY THIS IS JT. OH GOD RAINI I FUCKED IT UP I CLICKED ON EDIT WHEN I MEANT TO CLICK QUOTE GREAT GOOGLY-MOOGLY IT'S ALL GONE TO SHIT I'M SORRY!)
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PostJason Tandro Posted: Wed Nov 09, 2022 12:03 pm   Post subject: Reply with quote

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inferiare wrote:
(EDIT: HEY THIS IS JT. OH GOD RAINI I FUCKED IT UP I CLICKED ON EDIT WHEN I MEANT TO CLICK QUOTE GREAT GOOGLY-MOOGLY IT'S ALL GONE TO SHIT I'M SORRY!)


Jesus Christ, Jason, stop responding to the forum when you are doped up on pain medicine. I am sorry Raini, I borked your previous post, but I managed to save the key response which I will respond to below.

FML...



inferiare wrote:

I also feel this. If it's not going to endanger anyone, go for it. Annoy people. But when you endanger lives and get someone killed, I don't care what your movement is.


I understand you mean like in ordinary circumstances in general civilized society but in relation to our initial premise of morality being subjective, it's time to drop year one pop psychology on everybody.

The trolley problem. If we have two actions liable to cause harm to people on either side of an issue, do we go for what brings benefit to the most number of people or do we look at the merit of the situation outside of the numbers.

I tend to not care about harm coming to oppressors. But I also believe violence of any kind should be a last resort when all other methods of peaceful resolution have been exhausted. Sadly, in the US, it feels like peaceful coexistence keeps slipping away from us.

So at what point is violence an acceptable response to oppression? Do we just have a blanket "Don't harm others" policy or is there a certain line?


PS: I'm sorry to be pedantic, but we gotta keep a conversation flowing. Laughing
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PostManibrandr System Posted: Sat Dec 10, 2022 12:12 pm   Post subject: Reply with quote

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There is no line, it's all an illusion created in our minds to protect our egos.

When you do violence, it is usually when your half-light is activated, and it can be useful in certain circumstances, but like with all things, there are consequences to it. And this applies to all actions, if you choose to do something, you better be ready to take responsibility for it and the consequences, because if you're not ready for it, you're in for a bad time.
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Postpsychokind Posted: Mon Dec 12, 2022 4:50 am   Post subject: Reply with quote

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there's also the aspect of legitimate violence by the states monopoly.

I for one sanction the use of police power 41 hours a week. a lot of people have propably died because of my actions (the deported), and hundreds more died or were subjected to horrible violence by our, not my personal but governmental, inaction (victoms of non-deported illegal migrants).

I can't count the times I sat at my desk, comdemned to waiting for another woman to be raped, another wife to be beaten or another home to robbed or another man to be stabbed. violence (which basically means deportation by force) is the only answer that could help and is in my oppinion absolutely acceptable in the context of my work.

https://www.dw.com/en/germany-14-year-old-girl-dies-after-knife-attack-near-ulm/a-63989745 link related, one of my hundreds of cases.
https://rmx.news/germany/germany-notorious-asylum-center-in-illerkirchberg-played-host-to-horror-child-gang-rape-in-2019-so-why-hasnt-it-been-closed-down/ same village, also all 4 perpetrators are my cases.
so far, we have not been able to deport any of the perpetrators. they are considered as highly propable to reoffend by the doctors and case workers, since they show no remorse and do not accept therapy. so we're basically waiting for them to rape again.

we will not be able to deport the current eritrean murderer also, germany is not able to deport anyone to eritrea.
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PostManibrandr System Posted: Mon Dec 12, 2022 7:55 am   Post subject: Reply with quote

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That premise only really works if we assume that undocumented immigrants are significantly likely to cause problems.

Rape and murder is definitely horrible, but the idea that outside the gates, there is a sea of rapist immigrants waiting to push through the cracks of security is not an idea based on any permutation of reality. You also have to factor on the other side of the coin and consider what good could letting someone through bring, despite them not having their papers in order. You could be giving someone the new lease on life they so desperately needed.

On the other hand, deportation is almost always traumatic for the person, considering that there is often a big reason why they're there, and that reason is often to escape a terrible situation. With the wars going on, that situation is all too familiar. It also doesn't help that brown folk on average tend to get turned away more often due to the racial biases of the people working at such checkpoints.

Personally speaking, I think borders are a load of bullshit, and the violence needed to enforce them to be highly unnecessary.

- Elisha/Velvet
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Postpsychokind Posted: Mon Dec 12, 2022 10:55 am   Post subject: Reply with quote

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the only good part of years of uncontrolled immigration and no borders is that we now have pretty convincing statistics that there basically is a "sea of rapists" coming into the country. that had to be the logical outcome from the beginning, since the demographic of immigration in germany (europe) is overwhelmingly young males, low education, traumatised and/or poor, from underdeveloped countries with underdeveloped enforcement and/or cultural views about humans and especially womens rights. since their number is limitless, even if you had the lowest of low statistic of crimes, they still rise unconditionally in absolute numbers since the immigration is not limited.
for some countries we come close to a 99% deliquency rate (Algeria, Tunesia for example) accounting for non-specific crimes.

that means, we're basically morally justifying commited crimes by not having borders and/or control over immigration by putting the aim of helping(?) non-citizens with indefinite social welfare on a morally higher ground.

it is my point of view that these crimes are not compensated even by helping a million immigrants - but I am sworn to impartiality and it is the desired will of the people represented by our government to be that way.
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PostManibrandr System Posted: Mon Dec 12, 2022 11:17 am   Post subject: Reply with quote

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The problem with statistics is that they rarely tell the entire story, and only really serve to reinforce the biases of the uncurious. It is like how a lot of neo-fascists gravitate towards citing the 13-50 statistics as "proof" that black people are inherently violent.

Without a proper network of support, people tend to turn to a life of crime. And with the ideas of nationalism implanting the idea of an in-group vs the out-group, it's natural that a hierarchy forms that is heavily slanted towards privileging residents over immigrants.

- Elisha/Velvet
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Postpsychokind Posted: Tue Dec 13, 2022 7:22 pm   Post subject: Reply with quote

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Manibrandr System wrote:
The problem with statistics is that they rarely tell the entire story, and only really serve to reinforce the biases of the uncurious. It is like how a lot of neo-fascists gravitate towards citing the 13-50 statistics as "proof" that black people are inherently violent.

Without a proper network of support, people tend to turn to a life of crime. And with the ideas of nationalism implanting the idea of an in-group vs the out-group, it's natural that a hierarchy forms that is heavily slanted towards privileging residents over immigrants.


we thankfully have 70 years of democratic immigration to serve as counterevidence to that statement. we have legal inner-european migration with the western democracys that's very beneficial for everyone involved. even the eastern european countries catched up in the last 30 years, although they also provide most of the organized crime, too (yeah, I know, italy has it's special part there Very Happy ).
sometimes, the difference between cultures is just too large to overcome. the idea of borderless "nations" has failed, and millions of us will have to pay the price for this experiment one way or another. the only thing we can do now is pray and hope for the best, but we'll propably have situations like in the US or southern africa like we always fought not to have.
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PostManibrandr System Posted: Wed Dec 14, 2022 1:49 am   Post subject: Reply with quote

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Is it really counter-evidence or does it serve as a testament to how less restrictive policies are beneficial? I do think it is intellectually lazy to declare that something has "failed" without examining or elaborating why, and how it can be improved.

As for cultural differences, I do think it's more a factor of people, particularly white people's unwillingness to accept that there are other people with their different ways and practices, which leads to the aforementioned hierarchical issues, which then leads to the aforementioned criminality as a survival means.

Also, if you want to blame other culture's tendency towards misogyny, you can thank the more expensive social experiment that is still going on, which is maintaining US' interventionist policies on middle eastern soil. Believe it or not, that region of the world had been considerably more progressive in terms of gender equality, until the US decided to fight proxy, and even direct wars on the soil. That lead to reactionary resentment and religious extremism to overtake the culture where there had been cultural checks and balances against such sects rising up.

The system will only tell you about the world what doesn't threaten its own hegemony. Sometimes to view the full truth, you'll have to look beyond what you're given.

Borders are Violence:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwG2Tpg2OTY

- Elisha/Velvet
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Postpsychokind Posted: Wed Dec 14, 2022 7:29 am   Post subject: Reply with quote

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I agree with what you are saying. I think our differing points of view are a good reflection of the overall issue Jason put on the table. we weigh our morals differently on the issue, for you the overall good outweighs the bad, and for me it's the other way around.

it propably makes a huge difference in what way one is affected by moral standards set by others. I hope you can keep your humanistic / optimistic point of view, especially because that implies you won't become a statistic in my field of work. life is way more endurable that way.
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