0
   

venal hypocrisy

 
 
oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Mon 9 Nov, 2020 10:46 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

There is a big problem with this idea.

If the human brain is the source of morality, or if there is some other source that controls the human brain... then everything that human brains say is moral is by definition actually moral.

- Human brains have believed that slavery is moral.
- Human brains have believed that killing minorities is moral.


So liberty is better. So humanity is better.

That is exactly why morality has the property of objectivity which can be tested. The development of the society proves that slavery should be abolished and genocide should be banned.

That is why Harris starts his book with talking about the vendetta tradition called Kanun in Albania. The objectivity of morality points you the right direction of humankind. It is not arbitrary. The standard of neurophysiology applies universally, regardless of the West or the East.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Mon 9 Nov, 2020 10:57 am
@oristarA,
Please go to the dictionary and look up the definition of these two words.

1. objective
2. arbitrary

You are making the claim that "liberty is better". Prove it. If you are claiming that this morality is based on science, then what experiment do you propose that would test if "liberty is better". If we can have humans live longer by creating laws that restrict liberty... does that mean that these laws (i.e. against prostitution or drugs) are immoral?

We in the Western culture believe that polygamy (one man having multiple wives usually given as children) is morally wrong.

When Europeans came to North America, many of the indigenous Native American tribes practiced polygamy. We know this, because the European wrote about this... and set up missions specifically to stop these practice. As a result, these cultures were completely wiped out. They no longer exist.

Studies show that polygamy is common in human societies; in fact anthropologists who have studied this say that most human cultures are polygamist.

Is polygamy moral? How do you set up a scientific study to decide this?

(It isn't even clear if your primary value is "liberty", does that mean people are free to practice polygamy, or that women are free to be protected by banning the practice.)

There is no scientific way to arrive at an objective system of morality. You have yet to propose a scientific experiment.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Mon 9 Nov, 2020 10:59 am
@oristarA,
I will point out again that Harris' "scientific" system of absolute morality has a basis in Cultural Imperialism.

If you believe in an absolute morality, and you claim that the culture with science is the moral culture... that that culture has the right and the obligation to subjugate other cultures "for the good of humanity".

England was the greatest example of an empire that claimed superiority. They have lost their empire... but they are still trying to dictate morality in Africa and other regions.
0 Replies
 
oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2020 09:28 am
@maxdancona,
Steer away from countless confounding factors and come to the essential parts:

The repressive restrictions of slavery lead to poverty – deprivations of income, capability and optimism, which in turn lead to diseases, physically and mentally, comorbidity and malnutrition – these are typical sufferings that people live in liberty can, in comparison, largely avoid. There are plenty of scientific studies about the links of disease and poverty.

So in the light of health, slavery is the ideal incubator of diseases, especially infections like the pandemic. To make this planet a better place, get rid of slavery.

That is why liberty is better than slavery.

Sam Harris talks about the objectivity of morality, rather than absolute morality. Your misunderstanding has led you to your confusion.

One of the fundamental principles in science is the Uncertainty Principle, which prevents 100% accuracy and thus rejects the possibility of absolute morality.

Different societies have different forms of marriage. What problems are there when you realize the well-being of the people is top priority and the non-existence of absolute morality?
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Tue 10 Nov, 2020 11:20 am
@oristarA,
You are claiming that the morality of slavery can be determined by experiment. And the main experiment you suggest is a measure of the impact of slavery on the rate of disease.

The implication is this.... if a scientific experiment show that the institution of slavery lowers the incidence of disease, then slavery is a moral institution. (I don't accept this at all.)

In science, you go by the data, if the data contradicts your belief... you abandon your belief. If you are making a scientific argument about slavery, then you have to be willing to change your mind about slavery if the data no longer supports it.


Of course, we would have to do the experiment to see the impact of slavery in health. I am skeptical that of your hypothesis that slavery would be had for health... after all animals in captivity are often healthier and live longer than animals in the wild. Of course, we are both the speculating. But it doesn't matter.

I believe slavery is immoral because humans have inherent rights. I don't have an experiment to prove this. I don't need an experiment to prove this. I just believe it. It isn't science, it is a core part of who I am.

No matter what scientific results from whatever experiment you show me, it won't change my belief that slavery is wrong. I suspect this is true for you as well.




oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Nov, 2020 01:40 am
@maxdancona,
Quote:
if a scientific experiment show that the institution of slavery lowers the incidence of disease, then slavery is a moral institution


Because there is NO "if". Take a look at India's slums:

http://cdn2.walkthroughindia.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/slum-in-chennai-450x298.jpg
http://cdn.walkthroughindia.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/slum-in-kolkata-450x298.jpg

The health conditions of the dwellers here might still be better than slaves, because the former, with low income, have rights to vote (India is a democratic country) and move freely, yet the latter are completely deprived and constantly intimidated with violence from their owners.

Besides, health is simply one of the key factors that I showed about scientific experiments.

Animals in captivity like those in zoos live longer because they are well protected and cared for by humans, while animals in wild risk their lives every minute.

Quote:
I just believe it.


That is why both Dawkins and Harris are geniuses. Because they could use data to show why. (The Moral Landscape: How Science Can Determine Human Values is Harris' dessertation with which he earned his Ph.D) Harris wrote The End of Faith to explain why believing without the presence of reason is dangerous.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Nov, 2020 08:25 am
@oristarA,
In science you start with a hypothesis. Then you set up an experiment to test it. In order for the experiment to be scientifically valid.

1. The result can't be pre-ordained (if you set up the experiment to get the result you want, it isn't valid).

2. The experiment has to be able to disprove your hypothesis. You need to be able to say "if I see this data or make this observation, then I will accept that my hypothesis is incorrect.

What you are doing is starting with the answer you want to hear, and then googling for individual stories that fit it. Of course, in science the theory is tested continually... even after your hypothesis is accepted, it can still be rejected in the future as soon as any experiment contradicts it. You aren't even getting to this point.

What you are doing isn't science.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Nov, 2020 08:36 am
@oristarA,
I didn't intend to get into an argument about slavery. It was just an example. The important question is this...

If your morality is based on a scientific principle, would you give up your moral principle when the results of an experiment disproved the science?

My core moral principles (including my belief that slavery is wrong) are an intrinsic part of who I am. There is no scientific experiment that can change them.

Humans are born with inherent rights. I can't prove this scientifically. I don't need to prove this scientifically. It is a core part of what I believe without question.
0 Replies
 
oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Nov, 2020 08:02 pm
@maxdancona,
Now I see why you have gone so wrong.

maxdancona wrote:

In science you start with a hypothesis.


NO! NO! NO!

In science you start with the observation of reality. With the serious observation progressing, you accumulate knowledge, and then you try to organize the knowledge in a best way that you can conceive - in the form of testable explanations and predictions - this is where a "hypothesis" begins. You are simply misled by the word itself. Take Isaac Newton, he started with the observation of universal phenomenon that objects always fell to the ground. This observation must have taken for years (the legend that an apple hit his head and inspired his gravity formula is used to enlighten childish souls rather than a reality), then he offered his theory of gravity, got tested, further enhanced people's confidence in it until the arrival of Albert Einstein's general relativity which proved to be better.

Both Dawkins and Harris based their work on observations and offered data to explain their theory.

Now look back at my judgment "there is NO 'if'": this judgment has already included serious observation (checking out literature about the reality of slavery, comparing slavery and poverty and the links of them to diseases); just imagine yourself happened to be a slave, all your income were taken away by your owner, you were frequently beaten and shackled and threatened with death, constantly insulted, drinking unclean water and taking poor and scanty food in an environment where sanitation is horrible ... all these pains and abuses, physically and mentally, are already the symptoms of diseases. Yet you still have the fantasy that "what if I would be as healthy as rich people with these conditions?" - it only means you're delusional. You're starving, yet you still have a dream that "what if I can survive without food." Sorry, there is NO "if". Is my "NO 'if'" testable? Check out those realistic records of slavery.

In a word, I've sticked to science while you are satisfied with your fantasy.
maxdancona
 
  0  
Reply Thu 12 Nov, 2020 08:55 pm
@oristarA,
Quote:

Both Dawkins and Harris based their work on observations and offered data to explain their theory.


This is a complete misunderstanding of what science is.

In science, if any reproducible experimental result contradicts your belief... you must then reject your belief as disproven. You don't just "offer data to explain your theory". You test your theory, and if one result doesn't fit, all of the other examples you gave don't matter. Your theory is invalid.

This is a key principle of science. If you don't accept this, then our ideas about what "science" is are so far apart that it makes this discussion impossible.

0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  0  
Reply Thu 12 Nov, 2020 11:56 pm
@oristarA,
By the way, your story about Isaac Newton is completely wrong. Your story is ridiculous if you think about it. People noticed that "objects fall to the ground" tens of thousands of years before Isaac Newton was born. People have written about objects falling for as long as there has been writing (before the ancient Greeks).

Newton's hypothesis about gravity was quite a bit more deep than "objects fall to the ground". I can explain the history to you if you want. I can explain the experiment that confirmed Newton's theory in his time. And I can even explain the experiments that finally disproved his theory.

Newton's hypothesis wasn't based on just random observation. People had been making observations for tens of thousands of years without figuring out what Newton figured out. Newton had a hypothesis, which he tested mathematically. Then he published it. Other scientists than tested it, and the rest is history.

The point is that science is based on experiment, and Newton's theory was confirmed (and later replaced) based on experiment.
oristarA
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Nov, 2020 01:24 am
@maxdancona,
Now I understand why you attacked Dawkins, the well-respected scientist whose brilliant ideas about science and faith enlighten much of the world. Because you can't see the inconsistency in your thinking process. You talked about "In science you start with a hypothesis", which means you don't know the definition of science. I don't need you to tell me the common sense about the scientific reproducibility and hypothesis, because three decades ago Stephen Hawking had already talked about it in his A Brief History of Time. And I don't need you to tell me Newton's story either, because my version was basically borrowed from none other than Hawking himself.

You may keep attacking and disparaging Dawkins and Harris, which justly shows how ignorant you are. People of reason know they are national treasure of their country, respectively. They are geniuses in science. An intelligent man couldn't wait to read their work rather than being addicted to their own thought. Your intuition told you that slavery is wrong and you said you don't need to prove it. You don't know that is exactly where your problem lies - because the same intuition tells you to attack Dawkins and Harris without reason. The great intelligence of the two scientists are far beyond your grasp.

I think I have better work to do.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Nov, 2020 07:27 am
@oristarA,
Quote:
... Dawkins, the well-respected scientist whose brilliant ideas about science and faith enlighten much of the world


1. Dawkins is not viewed this way in the scientific world. You adore him. Most scientists don't. He is simply a writer... he is not a prophet. He is not viewed as brilliant by most of us.

2. Yes, I am attacking the views of Dawkins and Harris. I disagree with them for very specific reasons. They are promoting religious ideas and falsely claiming that science supports them above all other sets of religious ideas. This is a valid criticism, and I am far from the only scientist who feels this way about them.

3. My post about Newton was correct, and understanding what Newton actually discovered is a rather interesting story. Most people misunderstand Newton, which is why I responded when you brought it up... I find it the story interesting and it shows a side of science that I find important.

4. I have seem to hurt your feelings. I have expressed my opinion on morality, and I have defended it with facts. My post on Newton is factual, and my explanation of how science works is from personal experience. You can take it or leave it.




ander111
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Nov, 2020 01:43 am
@oristarA,
oristarA > Is the word "venal" familiar to you? Does it mean "corrupt"?

Nope, not necessarily... It just means "corruptible" ("capable of being bought or obtained for money or other valuable consideration"). So there's still hope for that person. Smile
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Sat 14 Nov, 2020 05:40 am
@maxdancona,
Dawkins was a prtty important vertebrate ethologist(mammalian behavior) with research areas in how "herd behaviors" affected evolution. Whre I think he fell off the melon truck is in two areas.

1He sees almost everything evolutionary as adaptation an he sticks to this assertion for some reason( scientists are always revising positions based on newest evidence)> Dawkins, in that respect, is like th IDers an Creationists. Hes denied many new findings as mere "artifacts of micro-evolution"

2. Hes become one of the most annoying acrimonious(IMHO) critics of anything to do with religious beliefs. He does no one any good just parading his beliefs while on stage or in debate. If the best evience he can muster is denial, then I deposit much of what he says in th round file.

He used to be a really great speaker along with Ernst Mayr (while he was alive) on evidences of evolution ns research findings. I think it was when the Creationists started doing some really wacky things , like court tests and building "Creation Science" theme parks , that he lost his ground cable.
0 Replies
 
 

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