Analysis of MisterChris's argument "Obj morality exists"

Author: seldiora ,

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  • seldiora
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    seldiora
    I found MisterChris's argument interesting because I have never seen it before (and it resonates with my scientific thinking). Here I will try to cross examine with Socrates method to show if it holds water or not. 

    A. Intuition
    .

    P1: If morality is objective, then we can expect virtually universal use of a standard set of moral principles.

    P2: All humans use and appeal to this standard, if only subconsciously. 

    C1: Morality is objective.

    Let’s work through this. Whenever two men have a dispute, the one side tries to convince the other that they have violated a standard of good conduct that they both share, while the other argues that they have not violated such a standard. 

    If there were not a shared standard between them, such an argument would be pointless, as one could simply say “to hell with your standard.” If that were the case, we could not condemn genocide, rape, or any other cruel act because we could not compare it to a universal standard of good conduct. Similarly, you can not argue that a football player committed a foul if the rules of football are not universally true.

    Since we DO make disputes/condemnations, this universal standard must exist. Thus, we affirm daily that morality is indeed objective.
    Obviously, we already see problems with P2, the contradictory nature of humans.  Kant claims that it is the universal law that makes an action moral. John Stuart Mill claims that the consequence with greater good is moral. In a dispute between Kant and John Mill alone, if they solidly believed in their philosophy, they could arguably both say "to hell with your standard", and stand by their personal claims. Therefore, I will produce a more easily backed premise based on MisterChris's logic. 

    P1: If morality is objective, then we can expect virtually universal use of a standard set of moral principles.

    P2: The vast majority of humans use and appeal to this standard, if only subconsciously. 

    C1: Morality is objective.
    P2 seems weaker, however, there can still be an objective standard even if only a majority accepts it. For example, it has been proven beyond a doubt that the Earth is Round. But some people lack scientific thinking, or have no experience with experimentation, and therefore believe that the earth is flat, contradicting this idea. But as the majority of scientists and educated men have managed to find and agree on this objective fact, they have successfully established its objective nature.

    However, there are still problems even with this more lax expectation. There are often undecidable problems within reality. Trump vs Clinton was nearly a tie in popular vote, for example. In addition, the "majority of humans" might still believe in something wrong, such as the earth being center of the universe, before exploring outer space. Due to lack of information, they could not find the objective truth. 

    Therefore, I propose an overhaul to the entirety of the universe as a standard. The reasoning behind this is that the vast majority of universe has to follow certain laws: Conservation of matter, speed limit of light, equal and opposite motions, so on and so forth. We have gathered from countless evidence in order to prove the universe's age, not merely from humans or earth, but from the entirety of the universe itself. It would be cherry picking to pick from Earth, after all.

    So the whole repealed argument can be like this:

    P1) What is objective (ex. science, math, truisms) can find overwhelming evidence in fact within the whole universe
    P2) The whole universe follows certain laws and rules, patterns, among these which are our actions
    C) Therefore, because our actions can be found to follow a certain pattern during certain times, this can be overwhelming evidence combined to show objective morality.

    (however, the problem is that science is "what should happen", not "what should I do", which is a whole other can of worms...)
  • Lemming
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    --> @seldiora
    Sorry for the rambling.

    Moral occurrences, and the decision a person would have always take should the variables line up right.
    Could make objective morality exist, I suppose, if that's what you're saying.
    But then it has the feel of math by itself.
    Math is objectively true, but it's only meaningful when applied.
    But even when it's applied, it's not actually good or bad, it just 'is.
    Similarly morality would become objectively true, and meaningful when applied, but nothing would 'actually be 'good or 'bad.
    It'd just be physics. Just causation.
    Though popular current morality may call a pirate bad, the pirate and his crew need not see themselves as bad, but realists.
    And still the objective morality that might have been used to measure that the pirates would come to such a conclusion and act such a way, does not refer to them as 'bad or 'evil, it just noted that they would appear and make such a judgement.
    Same with society that helps, not good or bad, just what will occur under certain circumstance.
    Good and bad, morality 'still subjective, even if one can calculate how it will occur.
    There's no 'agent in your objective morality.
    People can see if they make wolves lawful behavior in society, society becomes violent. That is objective morality.
    But still the man has his desires, perhaps he wants violent, perhaps not.
    Violent is not good or bad.
    Just is.
    Man not even good or bad, no such thing exists.
    Only objective and meaningless happenstances.
    Man happening to 'value certain circumstances.
    . . .
    Is it what we desire then, that is good?
    And what we despise bad?
    What we act towards good, even if we grieve for the action?
    What we refuse bad, even if we grieve at the refusal?
    Ah, rambling.
  • seldiora
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    --> @Lemming
    problem is, morality must exist in some form, because otherwise "nothing matters, it just is" contradicts itself (meaning you cannot believe that nothing matters and that "it just is")
  • logicae
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    --> @seldiora
    It seems so. Perhaps then rephrased: "Nothing of ultimate worth matters." This means the subjective worth is meaningless without objective backing and so can exist. 

    To Truth!
    -logicae
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @logicae
    When is objectivity not subjective?

    Or at what point does subjectivity become objective?
  • MisterChris
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    --> @seldiora
    Obviously, we already see problems with P2, the contradictory nature of humans.  Kant claims that it is the universal law that makes an action moral. John Stuart Mill claims that the consequence with greater good is moral. In a dispute between Kant and John Mill alone, if they solidly believed in their philosophy, they could arguably both say "to hell with your standard", and stand by their personal claims. 
    My argument specifically applies to situations where people appeal to the standard subconsciously, thus affirming the existence of one. While Mill can talk about utilitarianism and intellectually affirm it all he wants, if I took his orange juice because it would on balance make me happier then it would make him sad, he would protest it as unfair within a second. 

    Additionally, while people, civilizations and societies across the world may have certain moral practices that differ, what is truly striking is how in terms of moral principles, they are the exact same. In order to disprove objective morality, you would have to point out totally different moral principles. For example, while the Aztecs and the Spanish might disagree on whether the moral practice of human sacrifice constitutes murder, they both seem to agree that murder is wrong, as a moral principle. Imagine a society where murder is good. Where lying is encouraged. Where double-crossing is met with admiration. No such society exists, but this is what we would be witnessing under a truly subjective moral system.

    P2 seems weaker, however, there can still be an objective standard even if only a majority accepts it. For example, it has been proven beyond a doubt that the Earth is Round. But some people lack scientific thinking, or have no experience with experimentation, and therefore believe that the earth is flat, contradicting this idea. But as the majority of scientists and educated men have managed to find and agree on this objective fact, they have successfully established its objective nature.
    An objective standard does not require anyone to accept it, because it transcends humanity. People appeal to it, whether they like it or not. 

     In addition, the "majority of humans" might still believe in something wrong, such as the earth being center of the universe, before exploring outer space. Due to lack of information, they could not find the objective truth. 

    There is no lack of information as to morality. Stealing, murdering, raping, etc. will still be stealing, murdering, and raping 1000 years from now.

     Therefore, I propose an overhaul to the entirety of the universe as a standard. The reasoning behind this is that the vast majority of universe has to follow certain laws: Conservation of matter, speed limit of light, equal and opposite motions, so on and so forth. We have gathered from countless evidence in order to prove the universe's age, not merely from humans or earth, but from the entirety of the universe itself. It would be cherry picking to pick from Earth, after all.
    Precisely. 


  • seldiora
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    --> @MisterChris
    two different morality philosophies? What about anarchy (no gov) vs dictatorship (total gov control)? What about the idea of Virtue (Aristotle, "there must be one right thing to do in this situation") pitted up against Egoism (whatever is good for myself is best) pitted against Nihilism ("I can do anything I want, regardless of what Aristotle thinks.")?
  • MisterChris
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    --> @seldiora
    Again, moral principles do not differ when observing societies, even in those that were extremist (Also, I will note that government systems and collectivism vs. individualism pertain to how to best organize society. It has nothing to do with the morals of everyday actions, which is what moral principles are mostly concerned with). Fascist Japan thought that men that defected from the military were less than human, and similarly America shunned military defectors. They disagreed as to the extent to condemn them in practice, but in principle they were the same.

    Additionally, While intellectually I can call myself an egoist all I want, that does not carry over in practice in the least. If I violate the rights of an egoist because it makes me happy, they will protest despite it fitting their philosophy to do whatever one wants. 
  • seldiora
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    --> @MisterChris
    ah.... interesting. Then what about past practices that have been since abandoned, like slavery, human sacrifice, etc.? Or someone who does not even know language, such as Genie the feral child? Wouldn't she appeal to the most animalistic instincts, believing it is moral to bite things, crawl around, and be used to a starved horrible lifestyle? Or are you saying this only applies to educated persons past a certain age? Otherwise, the children's belief is valid, that it is fine for Santa to violate privacy (sees you when you're sleeping), pollute the North/South pole, monopolize gifts, and control child labor, despite being an absurd fictional story. [Any person other than "Santa" would be condemned for these actions]
  • MisterChris
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    --> @seldiora
    Then what about past practices that have been since abandoned, like slavery, human sacrifice, etc.?
    Already addressed human sacrifice. As for slavery, we condemn it today on the basis that everyone deserves liberty. Many in the past thought that some deserve liberty more than others, some protested it, and others simply didn't think about it too hard as long as they themselves got liberty. It should also be noted that most people had a distaste for it, but it was allowed by society because it was an economic necessity. But nowhere has there been a society where liberty as a principle is abandoned. If it were, people would have been lining up to become slaves in those societies.

    Or someone who does not even know language, such as Genie the feral child? Wouldn't she appeal to the most animalistic instincts, believing it is moral to bite things, crawl around, and be used to a starved horrible lifestyle? Or are you saying this only applies to educated persons past a certain age?
    Not knowing speech does not translate to being an immoral savage. And as for babies, considering their actual capacity has yet to develop into their potential capacity, I'm not sure we can extrapolate much from studying them... however, there is evidence to suggest that babies have a sense of fairness and compassion.

    Otherwise, the children's belief is valid, that it is fine for Santa to violate privacy (sees you when you're sleeping), pollute the North/South pole, monopolize gifts, and control child labor, despite being an absurd fictional story. [Any person other than "Santa" would be condemned for these actions]
    I hope you realize why this metaphor doesn't work to say children are immoral. Are adults immoral because we read the Hunger Games?
  • logicae
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    --> @zedvictor4
    What I mean is that subjectivity is completely separate from objectivity. This means that if worth (or morality) is only subject to matters of subjectivity, then it is not objective. 
  • seldiora
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    --> @MisterChris
    Okay. Back to the drawing board. This time I will add Socrates method questioning in order to break through the argument. 

    P1: If morality is objective, then we can expect virtually universal use of a standard set of moral principles.

    Q: Is it possible to clarify further this statement? MisterChris has noticed that even despite heavily differing opinions, there are specific measures which we appeal to -- liberty, life, happiness. Therefore, P1 as detailed as possible would be: If morality is objective, then we can expect virtually universal use of a standard set of moral principles, for example, concerning life, liberty, and happiness. 

    Q: Can he back this up? The problem is, he expects that anything objective has universal use of a standard. But E=MC^2 was not used until Einstein's discovery of the formula, despite its objective nature. Similarly, Calculus was not even perfected until Isaac Newton broke through with his discoveries. Physics was only established as a standard from Aristotle's time, despite being universally objective. There are countless objective scientific theories we have not found the basis to. For example, there is no "standard set of principles" to ground the Reimann Hypothesis, despite it being objective. Many objective ideas are not "universally used with a standard set". (especially considering physics did not exist in BC era, so we couldn't have used it)

    P2: All humans use and appeal to this standard, if only subconsciously. 

    Whenever two men have a dispute, the one side tries to convince the other that they have violated a standard of good conduct that they both share, while the other argues that they have not violated such a standard. 

    If there were not a shared standard between them, such an argument would be pointless, as one could simply say “to hell with your standard.” If that were the case, we could not condemn genocide, rape, or any other cruel act because we could not compare it to a universal standard of good conduct. Similarly, you can not argue that a football player committed a foul if the rules of football are not universally true.

    Since we DO make disputes/condemnations, this universal standard must exist. Thus, we affirm daily that morality is indeed objective.

    Q: Can MisterChris make this statement clearer? Yes, he can. From reading his explanation, P2 as detailed as possible is: All humans use and appeal to this standard, if only subconsciously, shown within disputes that are comparable to a universal standard. 

    Q: Can he back this claim up? At first, it seems obvious, people should be able to ground their reasoning upon basic ideas and compare and contrast. But when you compare to mathematics and physics, suddenly the objective standard falls apart. There is a 500 page proof of 1+1=2 and anyone who would dare to dispute this would be considered, stupid, insane, joking, or maybe all three. There are no reasonable disputes on 1+1=2. On the other hand, countless debates have formed about abortion, murder, torture, so on and so forth. If our appeal to the universal standard was so rigorous, then arguments would indeed be pointless, as 1+1=3 type of standard entirely ruins math and destroys life as we know it. Yes, re require 1+1=2 as a basic standard to prove that if x+1=2, x must equal 1, but this is still without dispute. Any mathematical logic proof that is sound must be accepted without proof because the objective truth is that powerful. So mathematics can just say "to hell with your standard" if you think 1+1=3.

    C1: Morality is objective.






  • MisterChris
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    --> @seldiora
    jeez, you're relentless, I'm much too lazy to read and respond to this xD
  • MisterChris
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    --> @seldiora
    Nevermind, I read it out of curiosity, I don't agree for many reasons but listing them takes effort
  • Sum1hugme
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    --> @seldiora
    The nature of man is to be free. Therefore, Liberty is the most basic natural right. The other natural rights, like life, happiness, and property, can be derived from the right to liberty.
  • seldiora
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    --> @Sum1hugme
    an interesting argument, but the nature of animals to be free directly challenges animal rights, a controversial issue.
  • BearMan
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    Sometimes I like to copy MisterChris' arguments and then text them to someone random with no context.


    Makes em really confused
  • seldiora
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    --> @BearMan
    Mikal is probably even more confusing
  • MisterChris
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    --> @BearMan
    Thanks, BearMan.

    RESOLVED: Sometimes I like to copy MisterChris' arguments and then text them to someone random with no context.

    OBSERVATIONS:

    • Merriam-Webster defines "random" as "being or relating to a set or to an element of a set each of whose elements has equal probability of occurrence"
    CONSTRUCTIVE:

    CONTENTION 1:  PATTERNS

    It is impossible for PRO to have sent text messages at pure random. Human brains are innately pattern seeking, the result is innate biases that skew the probability of picking certain elements in a sequence. 

    CMU.edu notes: 

    suppose that you were simply trying to generate a random sequence of letters and numbers without worrying about remembering it later. Would that sequence of letters and numbers be truly random?  Studies have shown that humans have difficulty consciously generating random sequences of numbers. The ‘random’ sequences that people generated tended to follow predictable patterns that would most likely not occur in a truly random sequence. Most people – when asked to pick a random number between 1 and 20 – will select the number 17.
    In fact, this phenomenon is so pronounced that, according to Plos One journal study, an algorithm was able to semi-accurately predict what number each participant would pick next based on both their pick history, and surprisingly, the history of other participants. 

    Twenty healthy subjects randomly generated two sequences of 300 numbers each. Sequences were analysed to identify the patterns of numbers predominantly used by the subjects and to calculate the frequency of a specific pattern and its variations within the number sequence. This pattern analysis is based on the Damerau-Levenshtein distance, which counts the number of edit operations that are needed to convert one string into another. We built a model that predicts not only the next item in a humanly generated random number sequence based on the item′s immediate history, but also the deployment of patterns in another sequence generated by the same subject. When a history of seven items was computed, the mean correct prediction rate rose up to 27% (with an individual maximum of 46%, chance performance of 11%). Furthermore, we assumed that when predicting one subject′s sequence, predictions based on statistical information from the same subject should yield a higher success rate than predictions based on statistical information from a different subject. When provided with two sequences from the same subject and one from a different subject, an algorithm identifies the foreign sequence in up to 88% of the cases. In conclusion, the pattern-based analysis using the Levenshtein-Damarau distance is both able to predict humanly generated random number sequences and to identify person-specific information within a humanly generated random number sequence.

    RECALL: Merriam-Webster defines "random" as "being or relating to a set or to an element of a set each of whose elements has equal probability of occurrence"

    Since humans do not allow for truly equal probability for each element of a set, the voter can not affirm.

    Back to you, BearMan



  • seldiora
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    --> @MisterChris
    The description will serve as the first round. you are not listening, random is random, RANDOM, you have not shown me what you say is true. 
  • BearMan
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    --> @MisterChris
    Thanks, MisterChris.

    RESOLVED: Sometimes I like to copy MisterChris' arguments and then text them to someone random with no context.


    What is a colloquialism? 

    Wikipedia defines:

    "Colloquialism or colloquial language is the linguistic style used for casual communication. It is the most common functional style of speech, the idiom normally employed in conversation and other informal contexts.[1] Colloquialism is characterized by wide usage of interjections and other expressive devices; it makes use of non-specialist terminology, and has a rapidly changing lexicon. It can also be distinguished by its usage of formulations with incomplete logical and syntactic ordering.[2][3][4][5]
    A specific instance of such language is termed a colloquialism. The most common term used in dictionaries to label such an expression is colloquial."


    Contentions:

    We can assume the user in this context did not mean pure, scientific random. It is quite obvious in this case, the user was stating a colloquialism, or and exaggeration of what the user actually does. Moreover, it would be quite wrong to assume the user was being serious. He uses slang terms like "text." The key thing here is the interpretation of the resolution, which was clearly written with colloquialisms.


    Conclusion:

    Since we can interpret the resolution, and it obviously did not mean pure random, rather a colloquial random, PRO can affirm the resolution.



    Back to you, MisterChris
  • MisterChris
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    --> @BearMan
    Didn't expect a full rebuttal, good job lmao
  • SirAnonymous
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    --> @BearMan
    Sometimes I like to copy MisterChris' arguments and then text them to someone random with no context.


    Makes em really confused
    That's awesome.
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @logicae
    How do you separate them out?

    Do they emanate in separate bubbles, from separate mechanisms with separate data input sources?
  • logicae
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    --> @zedvictor4
    I don't quite understand the question. If morality is subject to change, then it is subjective. Its moral worth also is subjective since it is subject to change also. This means that ultimate worth cannot be achieved given the ever changing nature of worth as presented by subjectivity.