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CAN I BE OBJECTIVE

 
 
wayne
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2010 01:14 am
@fresco,
fresco wrote:

Quote:
I have a feel for your meaning here but I don't yet fully understand all of your description. The standard observer, I think you are saying, is an Ideal, which is only understandable as a matter of degree, subject to factors linked to the reality of human existence?


Several problem arises with the italicised phrase.
1. At one level "human physiology" determines conceptions of "the world", hence the limits of description are anthropocentric. (Man is the Measure of All Things)
2. At second level, descriptions of "physiology" are themselves anthropocentrically driven. There may be alternative descriptions (holistic ones) which start from the axiom of "existence" as "relationship", rather than "ontological independence".
3. Some authors (notably Heidegger) suggest that the word "existence" only applies to "a human conception of being" (Dasein).

Taken together, these indicate that the covert concept of "a standard observer" is useful in the majority of situations where consensus applies. The words "subjectivity", "objectivity" and "reality" are meaningful only in relationship to renogotiating a consensus. The tacit assumption that they apply to some "ontological entity" independent of our own needs and actions is a useful fiction.

Quote:
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.

Albert Einstein




Can the statement be repaired by replacing reality with perception?
or perhaps concept?
At any rate, aren't we simply saying that objectivity is relative?
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2010 01:43 am
@wayne,
W can say "objectivity" is relative to context.

We are saying that the word "objectivity" never arises except in cases of lack of consensus. The artificial context of the philosophy discussion does not count. In normal situations you and I normally agree on what constitutes " an object", because we have coincident physiological and psychological needs.

Look at the dynamic nuances of consensus and context here:

Croc Dundee's Girlfiend: Watch out Mick, he's got a knife !
Dundee: That's not a knife...(producing his own oversize one)..That's a knife !

Philosophers who argue about "what an object called a knife" IS are playing non-contextual games.
wayne
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2010 01:58 am
@fresco,
fresco wrote:

W can say "objectivity" is relative to context.

We are saying that the word "objectivity" never arises except in cases of lack of consensus. The artificial context of the philosophy discussion does not count. In normal situations you and I normally agree on what constitutes " an object", because we have coincident physiological and psychological needs.

Look at the dynamic nuances of consensus and context here:

Croc Dundee's Girlfiend: Watch out Mick, he's got a knife !
Dundee: That's not a knife...(producing his own oversize one)..That's a knife !

Philosophers who argue about "what an object called a knife" IS are playing non-contextual games.


Ok, I got it now. Let me explain my position a little better.
I enter the room of philosophical discussion , I remove my cloak of ego, self, I put on the lab coat of agnosticism and view the problem objectively.

Yes, it's an ideal. In truth relative to lots of other stuff, but true nontheless.
0 Replies
 
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2010 03:01 am
@mickalos,
mickalos wrote:
It's very hard not to be sympathetic with it if you see the flaws in the correspondence theory of truth.


I think this thread is as good as any to discuss this. So, care to share what those flaws are?
0 Replies
 
Khethil
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2010 06:39 am
Absolute objectivity can't ever be had by beings who are subject to the interpretations of their own minds. But it must be worked for; and the extent to which we're able recognize and account for our flaws & bias will be the extent to that we'll not only achieve *some* level of objectivity, but also come to know ourselves better.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Jul, 2010 06:47 am
@Khethil,
Khethil wrote:

Absolute objectivity can't ever be had by beings who are subject to the interpretations of their own minds. But it must be worked for; and the extent to which we're able recognize and account for our flaws & bias will be the extent to that we'll not only achieve *some* level of objectivity, but also come to know ourselves better.


As usual, the perfect is the enemy of the good. In any case, it is one thing to ask whether a person is objective, and another to ask whether what he reports or he states is objective. A sports reporter may fervently root for one of the teams over the other, so he may not be objective, but that does not mean he cannot report and write about a game between the two teams objectively. I don't care whether the reporter is objective as long as his report is written objectively.
wayne
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 02:19 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

Khethil wrote:

Absolute objectivity can't ever be had by beings who are subject to the interpretations of their own minds. But it must be worked for; and the extent to which we're able recognize and account for our flaws & bias will be the extent to that we'll not only achieve *some* level of objectivity, but also come to know ourselves better.


As usual, the perfect is the enemy of the good. In any case, it is one thing to ask whether a person is objective, and another to ask whether what he reports or he states is objective. A sports reporter may fervently root for one of the teams over the other, so he may not be objective, but that does not mean he cannot report and write about a game between the two teams objectively. I don't care whether the reporter is objective as long as his report is written objectively.


You've raised a good point here. The analogy works great. The point I wanted to make is that he can't do both at the same time. A good sports reporter knows this and sets aside the home team when he writes, the bad ones clearly fail at this and their reports are obviously bias. I would suppose they teach this in journalism school if not they probably should.
The key lies in recognizing the pitfalls and avoiding them.
GoshisDead
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 10:00 am
@wayne,
Its only a good point to a point, the simple matter is the reporter is still bias and no amount of training is going to take that out of him. Read a report in which the reporter is attempting to be unbiased and one in which s/he is not and you will likely find a real writing difference. As well as the "unbiased" report will still be biased in its unabashed attempt to be unbiased.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 10:22 am
@GoshisDead,
GoshisDead wrote:

Its only a good point to a point, the simple matter is the reporter is still bias and no amount of training is going to take that out of him. Read a report in which the reporter is attempting to be unbiased and one in which s/he is not and you will likely find a real writing difference. As well as the "unbiased" report will still be biased in its unabashed attempt to be unbiased.


But are you denying that a reporter who is a fervent supporter of one of the teams can write an unbiased report of the game? How do you know this is true? Have you any empirical data to support that? Suppose the reporter reports only the score of the game, and the numerical details like the number of hits, or RBIs, or men left on base. Would that have to be biased? ( It is very difficult to make out what you are saying, in part because you wrote run-on sentences. Could you try to avoid that, and cut the sentences up into two, or else, insert the appropriate punctuation?)
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 10:25 am
@wayne,
wayne wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

Khethil wrote:


. The point I wanted to make is that he can't do both at the same time.


Just how do you know that? Could it not be that a trained reporter simply never injects his bias into his reporting? If you believe that is false, then why?
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 10:27 am
@GoshisDead,
Bulldog alert ! Laughing
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 10:35 am
We might, for example subject a report on a game to a panel of sports experts (without revealing the name of the reporter) and ask them to judge whether the report was fair or not. Who is sure that such a panel would have to judge the report to be unfair?
0 Replies
 
GoshisDead
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 11:11 am
@fresco,
I prefer hunting dogs
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 11:27 am
@GoshisDead,
GoshisDead wrote:

I prefer hunting dogs


Very clever, and what a retort!
0 Replies
 
Khethil
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 01:46 pm
kennethamy wrote:

wayne wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

Khethil wrote:


. The point I wanted to make is that he can't do both at the same time.


Just how do you know that? Could it not be that a trained reporter simply never injects his bias into his reporting? If you believe that is false, then why?

Woops, misquote - that wasn't me. That was Wayne on this post
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 02:59 pm
@Khethil,
Khethil wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

wayne wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

Khethil wrote:


. The point I wanted to make is that he can't do both at the same time.


Just how do you know that? Could it not be that a trained reporter simply never injects his bias into his reporting? If you believe that is false, then why?

Woops, misquote - that wasn't me. That was Wayne on this post


Yes. It is pretty hard with this system to know who is saying what? Sorry.
0 Replies
 
wayne
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2010 10:23 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

wayne wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

Khethil wrote:


. The point I wanted to make is that he can't do both at the same time.


Just how do you know that? Could it not be that a trained reporter simply never injects his bias into his reporting? If you believe that is false, then why?


Of course that is true.
His bias is held in abeyance. To be used when he finishes writing.
I suppose it is a matter of degree, Walter Cronkite may have been the best.
Or perhaps, Joe Friday.


Jeez, you just never know what this system will do to your post.
0 Replies
 
HexHammer
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 Jul, 2010 10:10 pm
@wayne,
wayne wrote:

One thing I have learned, in my time here, is the importance of objectivity to philosophical discussion.
I've become convinced that there are at least 2 major stumbling blocks to objectivity.
The first being belief, or firm belief. Objectivity depends a lot on my level of agnosticism. The moment I develop a belief my thinking becomes subjective to that belief. This does have a place, and purpose at times as long as the belief is not so firm as to be irreplaceable. Taking a position, objectively, requires I remain agnostic at some level.
The 2nd stumbling block being ego, which involves emotional attachments to a belief clouding judgement. Taking a position, objectively requires that I divorce myself from ego.
Difficult task indeed.
I think this is an objective opinion, but is it true?
I doubt most sane people in here can be objective.

Being objective means that you have to let go of feelings, teachings, control subconciousness and preception.

If you can put your parents and friends in jail for an offense, then you are truly objective.
..anything else is just wishful thinking.
wayne
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 Jul, 2010 10:26 pm
@HexHammer,
HexHammer wrote:

wayne wrote:

One thing I have learned, in my time here, is the importance of objectivity to philosophical discussion.
I've become convinced that there are at least 2 major stumbling blocks to objectivity.
The first being belief, or firm belief. Objectivity depends a lot on my level of agnosticism. The moment I develop a belief my thinking becomes subjective to that belief. This does have a place, and purpose at times as long as the belief is not so firm as to be irreplaceable. Taking a position, objectively, requires I remain agnostic at some level.
The 2nd stumbling block being ego, which involves emotional attachments to a belief clouding judgement. Taking a position, objectively requires that I divorce myself from ego.
Difficult task indeed.
I think this is an objective opinion, but is it true?
I doubt most sane people in here can be objective.

Being objective means that you have to let go of feelings, teachings, control subconciousness and preception.

If you can put your parents and friends in jail for an offense, then you are truly objective.
..anything else is just wishful thinking.


I would say that this is true, although, the very recognition of these factors gives us some power over them.
In a sense, we are subject to these factors as one may be subject to a king.
When we recognize this, we then become able to, in a sense, rebel against them. Thus improving the degree to which we are objective, rather than subject.
Sentience
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 Jul, 2010 10:41 pm
Of course not. If you are not correct, you are not objective. If you are correct, it is not because you are objective. Our subjectivity comes from the fact that we all have had different lives influencing our actions prior to the event, and usually varying amounts of data.
0 Replies
 
 

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