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Valgeir

 

You just don't get it, a murderer doesn't just think murder is ok, some are ill, some unthinking or apathetic, the rest invariably have motives that allow them to raitonalise their actions, such as, "they are not really human" or "he's going to hell anyway" or "he deserves it" or "he's evil" or "if I don't cut out this guy's heart, the sun won't rise" all such justifications are based on subjective bias, yes, but can be shown to be irrational and in conflict with empirical reality.

 

The key is STANDARDS, the standard of evidence or reasoning a crusader had for his crimes was a Papel decree, which is no reason at all, just amoral enslavement. If however they are defending themselves or others, or have good empirical grounds to kill, (such as a bomber with a dead-man's switch) then murder ceases to be so in light of the facts, their opinion that is was justified it objectivly correct.

 

If someone has no reason to kill but does so, that's not a subjective opinion, but just immoral action, they havn't got an alternative ethical philosophy, and even if they did, if someone has a relative and biased view that doesn't mean its valid. If its not based on any standards but just emotional or mental condictions it's indefencable, hardly proof against any other value system.

 

You keep thinking relativism is the norm and thusy prescriptive, it is not, I've already explained why. Repeating the relativist mantra and offering a crude murderer example doesn't counter all we've written If someone decides murder is right, they are wrong, not due to my subjective values but by objective ones that can demonstrate why murder isn't right. We're not just throwing opinions about, there's a reality to take into consideration, we are not living in a relative universe.

 

Voyager

 

Welcome aboard!

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Morality concerns an individual's beliefs concerning "right" and "wrong". I consider murder "wrong". Does a murderer? No. Hence moral codes that are not universal, but rather unique to an individual. In other words, subjective.

 

No... not any more than the existence of Creationists makes evolution subjective.

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Morality has very, very little to do with actions, it concerns belief. Actions only become "moral" or "immoral" when they are interpreted by people based on an individual's beliefs and emotions. Otherwise actions are just actions. Because the same action can be called moral by one person and immoral by another (e.g. the removal of Terri Schiavo's feeding tube), due to differences in belief and emotion and so difference in interpretation, morals are not universal. Because they are particular to a given person, they are subjective.

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Oh geesh. Since you're not reading anything I explain to you, I'm just going to ignore you now. I'm talking to a brick wall. Differences of opinion do not make a scientific fact subjective - if you don't get this basic logic, then I'm afraid there's nothing I can do.

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I understand what you're saying, but show me how a moral code can be scientiic fact.

 

I am reading what you say, but I can't seem to follow the logic from beginning to end. Morality isn't based around actions, but vice versa, actions are based around morality. Moral codes are derived from peoples' opinions concerning actions, which is why the reality of the situation doesn't play into it. When I gave the murderer example I said murderer because someone who murders obviously doesn't have moral issues with murder, but the example can extend to a person who isn't planning it or rationalizing it, but just doesn't see anything morally wrong with it. They obviously have a different set of morals than a typical person of modern western society. I'll return to the Terry Schiavo example. The left does not consider the decision to remove her feeding tube immoral. The right does. If there is an objective moral code, how can this be?

 

Edit #2: AUB- Since it seems Francois won't be returning to assist me here, and you understand where he's coming from, perhaps you could give me a hand here?

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AUB- Since it seems Francois won't be returning to assist me here, and you understand where he's coming from, perhaps you could give me a hand here?

 

Gladly, I'll just get my microphone sorted out. (scuse the errors, I'm to tired to spell check) As the purpose of this essay is to clarify and explain, I will reiterate in order to ensure I am understood, so no complaints about the repetition from you anal Theists, especially considering what your Bible is like.

 

This issue is a complex one, as most people define ethics as something non-material or in the case of Theists, "holy" etc. A lot of people have trouble grasping philosophical materialism and objectivity and just how all-encompassing it is. Those who stop believing the absolutes of theology invariably become relativists, as their confidence in external standards is badly shaken, in a sense we objectivists are fighting to restore confidence in epistemological certainties, as religion has done a lot of damage. Some of our biggest opponents are those who hate religion as much as we do. (I have argued with several here). They're still suffering from it is its effects and have yet to fully extricate themselves from a post theistic cynicism. In a general social sense, post-modernism and relativism are the fallout from xtianity's death in Europe, and can't see past the broken promises of Christianity. Studying pre-Christian philosophies can help to reach a objective and materialistic view of ethics and other matters, as post xtian objectivity is for the most part a matter of picking up where Epicureans and classical empiricists left off. They would have found our modern difficulties grasping materialistic ethics quite appalling, (one of the reasons xtian's wiped them out was because of the threat their ethical values posed to their theology and moral pretensions.) Anyway enough of the lecture, I'll dissect your posts to start with.

 

Morality has very, very little to do with actions, it concerns belief.

 

Actions are as much a part of ethics as "beliefs", for it is the results of these actions that define their ethical status, a good person can cause inadvertent harm, a bad person can do accidental good, the intentions define the person ethicaly but first a ethical standard has to be determined.

 

Let's take a caveman, he's a bad person and drops a bolder on another caveman, he misses however so his intentions were bad but the results were not. Now we have a good caveman who accidentally (don't ask me how) drops a bolder on someone and squashes him flat. The results were bad but the intentions were not. But how do you define dropping a bolder on someone as bad? That is where empiricism comes in, you need to observe the human condition, before you can proceed to define morality, for example, without science we would not know that it is the oxygen in the air that we need in order to survive, without that knowledge it would not be considered wrong to extract oxygen from an airtight room with someone in it, until the person proceeded to die.

 

You would need to learn from the effects of this action and thustly empirically that taking oxygen from someone is wrong, or you can learn beforehand through, again, empiricism. It all well and good saying morality is defined by a person's intentions, or by their "beliefs" if you must use that word, but until we sort out precisely what the results of our actions are, and exactly what humanity's nature is, you would not be able to tell from a person's actions whether they were good or bad. The bad would not know if they were doing bad, and good would not know if they were doing good. Without objective information one cannot define the person's actions morally, and one cannot make moral decisions without information regarding their consequences You can't just have good people accidentally harming others, or bad people accidentally helping people all the time. This issue is confusing (or to me complex) enough as it is. Intension and results, cause and effect, motive and reality, there is no ethics without both. Only when the person fully comprehends the results of their actions can they do bad, and be considered bad etc.

 

I don't considered clinic bombers immoral, they genuinely think they're doing what is right according to the only moral standards they know, they are amoral slaves and need rehabilitation, not condemnation. Information is everything. Their values are not symptomatic of morality's subjectivism, they are ill informed and misguided. They do not really have morals by any rational definition, any more than any other Theists do. (again definition is everything, you could define morality to be whatever other people do, but that is just stupid, logic dictates a more helpful definition is needed, many things are relative, ethics does not necessarily have to be one of them)

 

If morality is not a constant it is not a standard. Of any kind. Take the late Pope who with 1 breath promotes humanitarianism, and with another dooms millions of Africans to die of AIDS. That is not a standard of morality, that is using morality as a propaganda tool, and sweeping it aside when ideology dictates it to be in the way. Humanitarianism can be defended and derived by and from morality, letting people die of a disease through your actions cannot, such inconsistency negates the possibility that any ethical pretensions on the part of the papists can be taken seriously.

 

There may be plenty of good Christians but they have such a warped understanding of reality that they end up doing bad. The same way that the theory behind an experiment is justified or negated by the results, the scientists beliefs or intentions are one thing, whether they are validated is another. Unless you understand why things need to be understood objectively and how they can be, (using the scientific method), you cannot comprehend our reasoning. The problem here is that beliefs are subjective and quite often wrong, unless derived from purely objective methods.

 

Motives are one thing, you're not moral if bribed to do good like a theist is, at the same time morality has to have a responsive and aware mechanism, otherwise it is blind, and a blind set of ethics amounts to random, arbitary and chaotic dictates, meaningless, and calling them ethics is a violation of the term's definition. (You can disagree with the need for definitions and standards, but don't expect to have an intelligible conversation without them) Morality has to be based on more than just belief, but on a firm understanding of the empirical facts, in other words informed beliefs lead to moraly determinable actions. (If one did not know there was a kid in the fridge, then sticking it in the crusher was not immoral.)

 

This is the crux of the matter, only by observing the results of our actions, can we be sure on empirical grounds that are moral beliefs are correct, in other words we need to start with empirical observation, and end with empirical observation, anything else is irresponsible and thustly unethical. Let me give you an example, Christian's base their morals on the depraved rantings of bronze age theocrats, who knew nothing about reality, past or present, thustly most of their values were either archaic, irrelevance, incomprehensible, or just plain wrong. If we base our morals on such standards then they can hardly be considered decent or reasonable, they will do harm and as such only be considered moral by those who fanatically impose such "values" today, despite the clear evidence that they are empirically incorrect or out of date. They care more about getting in God's good books, than about the human race, and do not empathise with the victims of their crusades, and are thustly selfish and blind. Their actions are dictated by many things, morality is not one of them. If a "moral value system" can cause enormous harm, suffering and destruction, all for a fantasy and unproven belief, and still be considered ethical, then your definition of morals is completely incomprehensible. A value system is one thing, a moral value system is another. The term implies at least that order and responsible behaviour is encouraged, but there is no civilisation that has not been wrecked due to xtianity's "moral" values.

 

If I go around dictating moral rules from my interpretations of the back of a cereal packet (all hail this special K !), would such "ethical" commandments be truly moral in any sense? No they would not, to me they would be ethical, but for something to be moral it needs to be more than just considered moral (whether by one person or a billion). It needs to have reason and facts on its side, otherwise it is a lie. It needs to work, to deliver what it promises, Communists and Christians have been promising a egalitarian Utopian due to their values for as long as they been around, and look where it's got us. It also needs to be based on more than mere ideology, you can have all good intentions in the world but if your commandments of dictated by a squeaky voice in your head, by luck they may work, but I'd personally be unwilling to take the chance.

 

There are plenty of subjective moral standards out there, but those that are false do not deserve to be considered. If we remove all moral standards from every religion and ideology categorically demonstrated to be harmful, based on false information, or just plain out of date, we are left with very few sets of standards. Ideally so few that they can be reconciled into one set of moral principles, that are empirically derived, responsive to change, and beneficial for all, objective morality.

 

The flip side of this, is that many people misconceive moral issues completely. For example people dismiss Hitler, Stalin and Bin Laden as simply "evil" but nobody is really "evil" in a comic book sense. For sure there are plenty of degenerate, violence selfish monsters, and habitual criminals, but these people hardly represent any alternative value system, they need simply incarceration or therapy and would exist no matter what ethical system is dominant, some are simply a product of their environment, and others have denounced any value system at all. The people I am talking about our those who convince entire continents to commit their atrocities. People who usually fit the classic definition of the "evil" leader, (rather than henchman), that are in fact a symptom of something else, humanity.

 

In a sense, they simply have a different set of moral standards. What people don't like to hear, as it confuses them is that the Communists, Al Qaeda and even the Nazis had a set of ethical values, people prefer to think they have none all, and do bad because they are bad people. They fail to realise that people usually need justifications for terrible actions. You may call these excuses, or "alternative ethical values", certainly theistic terrorists think they are acting in accordance to a higher moral standards, Nietzsche warned against dismissing people who act too differently to us as simply evil, they are human, we need to recognise that, they had values which they considered moral (and we should remember we all have such dark potentials etc etc). Those afraid of moral relativism are among those who hate to bring this up, along with theists who like to see everything in black and white, (because their minds aren't sophisticated enough to cope with complexity etc etc). Both are wrong, the Nazis base their "morality" on understanding of nature that was severely warped or just plain false. I could go on about the difference between scientific Evolution and Nazi Evolution, but I would digress. (The struggle for survival between life forms is not an essential part of Evolution, unlike environment and mutation, and "fittest" means best suited or adapted to any given environmental pressure etc etc), (I'm trying to keep this as brief as I can) Such alternative morals are misguided or subsumed by other considerations (thusly it's not the ethics themselves but their failure to be correctly or sufficiently applied etc etc), that is what causes people with "morals" to acts so differently to others who also have, what they consider "morals". The trick is to define morality, to empirically analyse reality, the human mind, (neurology is essential) society (so is anthropology) and are interactions and use all legitimate forms of our disposal to come up with the best method to achieve the correctly derived definition of moral, both in the minds of humanity by education and in practice by social engineering.

 

It is simply a better class of ethics, surely, common sense dictates that ethics based on the realities of humanity are better than those based on unrealistic idealism and spiritual yearnings. Morals based on a heaven or hell doctrine for example often cause enormous harm, as people get tortured so as to "save their souls" for the next (and more important) level of existence. We need to base our ethics on the here and now, because that is all we have, anything else is irresponsible, (the destruction of a certainty for a uncertain or implausible set of concepts). I mean isn't it more reasonable to base morality upon what we know to exist, the world around us, than on invisible spirits? "Worldly ethics" may be dismissed by the Theists, but for no other reason than they are made to, whereas our grounds for dismissing their ethics are far stronger, and for the most part irrefutable. (Our logic defeats their morality, whereas their morality cannot defeat our logic)

 

"God" is not a reasonable or practical source of morality, he is subjectively perceived and interpreted, and lax objective reality, so cannot trying guide, correct or explain. Static, unresponsive, but also subject to interpretation and therefore the tool of every theistic agenda. A blind man with a sharp stick running wildly around cannot be considered a moral standard, or applauded as a beacon of ethical enlightenment whenever he accidentally cuts someone's leg off. It gets even worse if this man is regularly controlled by people whose concerns are anything other than the lives around. A person with eyes, ears, with empathy (or reason if you like FT) who can objectively project (or in infer, deduce whatever) self-awareness onto others, and see both objectively and personally what they are doing, is far more likely to get it right, the sharp stick may remain, but at least it is guided by a responsible and capable person, rather than someone who is neither.

 

If you want to consider all ethical values no matter how abhorrent or harmful as proof of the subjectivity of morality, then be my guest, however, common sense dictates that the best informed decisions are more likely to be right, this is not a democracy, nor does an objective search for truth tolerate or consider a matter of "right" all other views. There is a right answer and the wrong answer in maths, there is a reality and a fantasy to empiricism, this principle when applied ethics negate the possibility of subjectivism or relativism. If morality can be considered a science, then all we need to do is demonstrate that it can be, demonstrate that as such, ethics work far better than any form if it out there.

 

Only those in slavish obedience to dogma would stand against us, and they would demonstrate to the world that they clearly have no interest in humanity, life, or morality for its own sake. They'd be seen as the tools of a self-serving institution, that as FT and myself often pointed out, always puts ideology ahead of morality. If morality is not placed ahead of all other priorities, then it is not a moral standard at all, it is merely the appendage to a "philosophy". One that cannot be considered ethical as it tosses ethics aside whenever they get in the way of its agenda. A person is moral if they put moral concerns ahead of their own interests, therefore any morals that are part of a religion which invariably considers its agenda above even it's "ethics", is not moral by definition.

 

Christianity, Islam, communism, they are all self-serving, they all have moral pretensions, but such "values" negate themselves by being second or third on the list of priorities held by such adherence. In other words they are moral values which lack objectivity and are merely part of a ideology rather than its guiding light, invalidate themselves. Like empiricism it is a process of elimination, objective morality eliminates all other values, that is why morality is not subjective. We don't just recognise the values of others without thinking (like relativists do), we have carefully and meticulously rule them out. But we don't just conclud that all non-objectivists can't be moral, or have no morals, we rule their "ethics" out by a reasonable process that is self-evidently valid. Christians are not moral because we decree it, but because what they call morals are the arbitrary dictates of a non-existent deity frequently ignored for the sake of the spreading and consolidation of church tower. If that's morality then I am a boiled egg.

 

Anyway back to your first comments, and informed personality is the key, not just belief, people's beliefs might change if they knew the facts, and their actions don't always reflect beliefs, is a complex interrelationship. Yes a person is moral stanzas is defined by their approach "beliefs" but morality itself can only be derived from objective shrewdness, and that has the biggest impact on a person's mind, and therefore their actions, which were the basis for the defining of morality. It's a perpetual cycle of cause-and-effect, reality must come first, with people's actions and their repercussions noted, and ethics to mold people's minds, formulated. The problem is you have a process in reverse, beliefs first then actions. We are a product of our environment, not isolated introspection.

 

Actions only become "moral" or "immoral" when they are interpreted by people based on an individual's beliefs and emotions.

 

But what do they base their individual beliefs and emotions on? They have to have some standard, some previous experience. We don't just have fully formulated moral values which we then apply to actions. Why can't actions be the basis? I also fail to see why you insist that beliefs and emotions are the basis for any judgment of action. Emotions have a part to play, but are not essential, and "beliefs" imply there is no possibility of definitive knowledge, as all is relative, circular reasoning. If the reason why morality is relative is because the base our morals on relative beliefs, then that is ignoring any possibility of objectivity. Actions often have to come first as their repercussions need to be known before moral judgment can be passed, we have to see the results of throwing a knife at someone's head before we could decide it was not a good thing to do, (according to whatever values we have, formulated from empathy for example) observation precedes all, otherwise we would be incapable of interacting with reality, no interaction no morality. If you base your actions on your beliefs and then you will indeed have to judge them according to subjective standards, however if you base your morals on action then you will have an empirical basis for morality. The need to think realistically not idealistically, noting a whole host of previous data in which you base a "belief". You do not have a single isolated belief previous to a single isolated action, but plenty of previous actions before beliefs and actions can be evaluated. Because it's not just the beliefs that evaluated or determining the actions, the beliefs need to be evaluated as well.

 

Is it chicken and the egg time? Moral beliefs have been based on something other than simply instinct or reason (theology is out of the question), previous to that you have to have experience and empirical data, "what" you may ask "criteria do use to judge the empirical basis for beliefs?" "Surely beliefs and emotions!" And so you may perceive a perpetual cycle, but objective morality doesn't start with determining how you determine moral facts from reality, that's very much open to debate at this point (though as I have previously said logic and empathy play a part), one thing is for sure, basing beliefs on anything other than empirical reality is absolutely out of the question. You need to take humanity's true nature into account, or we will make stupid mistakes like those of a Christianity's views based on a misconception of, say, gays or woman. Their opinions in these cases are not just another set of moral values, but simple ignorance of biology and nature.

 

Otherwise actions are just actions.

 

No, as I said, it would be inhuman to simply view actions without any emotional or rational reaction, no one is that indifferent, such a scenario is out of the question. We have emotional and cognitive reactions to actions around us, that much is a fact, what is not a fact is that we need to base our moral conclusions on subjective beliefs. People perceive actions differently, but there is nonetheless an objective reality to them, that is one source of subjectivism invalidated, the other is people's general worldviews that they project onto actions they perceive, (to a member of the KKK a black guy being lynched is good, to those in most other Christian organisations it's bad) these two tend to be imperfect reflections of reality, and are once more invalidated by objectivity.

 

Because the same action can be called moral by one person and immoral by another (e.g. the removal of Terri Schiavo's feeding tube), due to differences in belief and emotion and so difference in interpretation,

 

Again you are just restating a descriptive reality, but interpreting it as prescriptive. We are talking the difference between doctors who fully comprehend the situation, and people with either blatant emotional bias, or irrational religious beliefs. Maybe there was a difference of opinion in a strictly moral sense, but it wasn't rival moralists were arguing this particular issue, it was scientists versus the rationaly challenged, your example is an unfortunate one. Neither belief nor emotion in themselves are sufficient means to determine moral realities, if they're the only tools you recognise then it is no wonder you think for morality is subjective, as everything based on belief and emotion is. You have a bunch of people with different faiths and ideologies battling over an objective reality that they cannot perceive without a shroud of emotionalistic and invalidated bias, that does not change the fact that empirical reality and reason dictated that a person with no cognitive functions, is not sentient and thusly lacks the defining factor of a human, if all you are is a bag of organs such moral considerations are misplaced. If there is a question of that persons cognitive ability then it is purely a matter for scientists to determine not theologians.

 

As they point out in a recent episode of South Park, it was not playing God to remove the feeding tube, it was playing God to put it in the first place. Using science to artificially prolong a person's life beyond all reason, when nature has given up, (usually for good reason), and then demanding in the name of religion that someone should be sustained that way indefinitely, and demonising science because it disagrees, is absolutely absurd. Especially as according to Christian doctrine no amount of extra time in a vegetable state can change that persons eternal destiny anyway, so what difference does it make in the context of Christian doctrine? The whole thing was simply irrational emotionalism, not in any way a valid demonstration moral relativism, such opinions are hardly credible. People's perceptions of life should be dictated by the state of the brain, however if they perceive life has been some sort of non-corporial spirit, or immortal essence, that betrays a unhealthy fixation with the non-existent, (historically at the cost of humanity's physical well-being) but to have a fixation with the body when it has lost all-purpose screams of desperation, whether blinded by emotion for by the self-righteous need for a crusade, none of this changes the facts. Whatever they happen to be, it is for empiricism to determine, not the right-wing media, ignorant relatives or even more ignorant Theists with an agenda

 

morals are not universal.

 

You contradict yourself, if everyone has morals then they are universal, they just have different perceptions of what is moral, and as I have previously stated those perceptions are either flawed or accurate. You mean complimentary.

 

Because they are particular to a given person, they are subjective.

 

You just keep repeating yourself, you have not demonstrated why this is so, whereas we have been knocking holes in your position for days. How many times to a hefty repeat myself, descriptive is not prescriptive, there is a reality outside any particular given person. A person's opinions on god are individual, but reality is not up for a vote. We'd like your reasoning on this matter, not just mantra, you can't blame FT for getting frustrated.

 

I understand what you're saying, but show me how a moral code can be scientiic fact.

 

Mankind is empirical, our actions are empirical, therefore a correct appraisal of the facts serve as a firm foundation for any morals, why create morals? Wthout them society cannot function. Why should society function? it is necessary to survival. why survive? because without survival all questions and anything else ceased to be. We could continue to delve deeper into the justification for morality of that is not what you want, so we will start off on the assumption that we want a decent moral code.

We have some idea of what morals are supposed to be, question is how do we fashion them? We have a criteria, we have certainly desirable outcomes, peace, harmony, humanitarianism ect, these things can be determined to be morally desirable from a pragmatic and empathic perspective. How do we bring these values about? by studying the problems that inflict mankind, what causes humanitarian disasters, what causes harm, what causes death. We study the actions, the motivations, the rationalisations, the institutions and the ideologies which cause suffering. The basic criteria derives from empathy and a rational intention to safeguard our species, I don't think you would question that. We use the scientific method to determine the truth of humanity, it is descriptive but also serves to prescribe certain solutions and likely answers to moral questions. For example, our knowledge of cognitive functions thanks to neurology now allows us to know for certain that all human consciousness derives from the brain, therefore a person is no longer alive in any meaningful sense when they have brain-death, therefore switching of life support machine does no harm as it violates no principles or criteria, that is the scientific fact, therefore not immoral by standards determined from such facts.

 

If science declares someone living dead, then cutting their head off is not murder, I could give many more examples where science already determines whether something is illegal, it is one step from there to determine whether something is a moral based on empirical data. You must simply lose all sentiment for old-fashioned ideas, and go strictly by the lab report, this may seem rather cold and clinical, but at least it is true. There were no witches in post dark age Europe, therefore the witchhunts were inherently immoral as they cause nothing but harm and were based on categorical falsehood. Most historians would agree with that, they are using empirical knowledge to determine the moral realities of a significant period of history.

 

We could look at certain ideologies and beliefs, (that have been previously determine to be invalid) that tend to cause harm, we determine the moral implications through history, sociology, anthropology and statistical facts. We therefore declare that doctrine Y by virtue of its misrepresentation of the human condition, and by its immortal ramifications, is immoral empirically. If we have our morals firmly laid out, determine whether something is immoral is relatively easy. We get the morals from reasoning what is best mankind, base the morals firmly on the facts, and then apply the best objective response. For example the last 1700 years of Christian history was not in mankind's best interests, (Wars, disease, persecutions etc) only the church's, and as morality does not care for anything other than humanity, the whole religion can be declared in violation of empirical ethical principles. Guess how many times I've done that.

 

I am reading what you say, but I can't seem to follow the logic from beginning to end.

 

It is a tad involved, there's no denying that. It does require a paradigm shift.

 

Moral codes are derived from peoples' opinions concerning actions,

 

And where do they get these opinions from? There is an element of empiricism even in the most blind faith.

 

which is why the reality of the situation doesn't play into it.

 

It can, it should, and in objective morality it does. Is is not aught. I keep repeating this, you keep ignoring it. Your grasp of logic appears to be weaker than a Theists.

 

When I gave the murderer example I said murderer because someone who murders obviously doesn't have moral issues with murder,

 

Ad hoc reasoning, they may simply be defining the actions as something other than murder.

 

but the example can extend to a person who isn't planning it or rationalizing it,

 

I did this, and explained why such actions do not a alternative value system make.

 

but just doesn't see anything morally wrong with it.

 

There is usually a reason why, environmental conditioning, mental problems, whatever the case they are hardly a recommended standard of behaviour, so why bring them up? Nobody uses the behavioural traits of condemed criminals to determine ethical issues. Nobody except you apparently. You can't be saying a person's lack of conscience or moral code means there are no such things, any more than an atheist's lack of a belief in god proves there isn't one. The murderer's absence of ethics does not imply there is any ethics to lack. In fact it says nothing on the matter either way, and is totally irrelevant. To determine the reality is something you do not consult everyone, just those who know they're talking about, you don't consult an amoral killer as to whether or not ethics exist, there disbelief would make it a redundant question, as redundant as asking an atheist if God exists, you determine whether or not he exists without having to do that, and determine whether ethics are ojective without acknowledging those who have already made up their minds, they're having that position does not mean that is correct. In other words peoples opinions are irrelevant. What part of objective do you fail to comprehend? All this does not prove morality is objective, but your objections have no bearing it is.

 

They obviously have a different set of morals than a typical person of modern western society.

 

Or none at all. Again neither they nor a typical westerner have any say in this, the majority do not dictate the truth, any more than the. exceptions. Difference of opinion only proves subjectivism if the matter is beyond ojective fact, such as the artistic merit of a painting. Ethics on the other hand deal with real effects on humanity, and therefore, regarding a homosexual as deserving death, or life does not mean the issue is open for debate, merely clarification. What are the reasons for both opinions? If one uses science and the other use bible quotes, then scientific morality favours the former over the latter.

 

I'll return to the Terry Schiavo example. The left does not consider the decision to remove her feeding tube immoral. The right does.

 

That is because the left preferred commonsense and scientific fact, and the right preferred talking shit 24/7.

 

If there is an objective moral code, how can this be?

 

Because one or more side is unaware of this. +Plus the right preferred talking shit 24/7.

 

Determine an objective moral code's contents is the hard part, determine why there are alternative views given an objective moral code's reality is easy. Is no more difficult to fathom than why people still go on about the age of the earth when it has been proven beyond all doubt. People are stupid, people are biased, people lie. Ethics should not be based on humanity's shortcomings, but on our strengths, are capacity to sift fantasy from reality, subjective from of objective. Morality is more important than anything else, it should therefore be left up to those with a firm grasp on the best methods for determine truth, not to those with a proven track record of always being wrong.

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Alright, I think I get it now. Some of the things stated in that essay, that were not stated previously, or at least in not those terms, assisted me. So you're saying that because the empirical facts concerning the results of our actions, and not just the beliefs of the individuals, play into the construction of a moral code, while moral codes are not completely absolute they are objective? Whereas they wouldn't be if belief was all that played into it (which is not so)? Alright, if that's it then I get where you're coming from now.

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The Law of Gravity:

 

If you drop something, it will fall. Never will it go up, or sideways. Objectively, it will always go down, no matter what you've dropped, because Gravity does not change its mind based on what was in your hand. It will fall, and the only differences will be in weight or size. It doesn't matter if you think it should go up instead; basic observation and rational decision exorcised from emotion will tell you that Gravity does exactly the same thing every time.

 

Is that how you meant it explained in conjunction, Franc?

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Yes, exactly... apart from the badly-chosen word "exorcised". :grin:

 

 

The Law of Gravity:

 

If you drop something, it will fall.  Never will it go up, or sideways.    Objectively, it will always go down, no matter what you've dropped, because Gravity does not change its mind based on what was in your hand.  It will fall, and the only differences will be in weight or size.    It doesn't matter if you think it should go up instead; basic observation and rational decision exorcised from emotion will tell you that Gravity does exactly the same thing every time.     

 

Is that how you meant it explained in conjunction, Franc?

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What I want to know is what strong atheism has to do with butts?

 

Other than that Assimov posted the thread and makes everything about butts...

 

Oh...it's from a Strongbad email. I just remembered the line, he said that it (I don't know what) wasn't for the faint of heart, or the faint of butt.

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Well, the webmaster has asked me to leave. Goodbye everyone !

 

So, mission accomplished? As a complete sideline observer it sure seemed to me that that's what Francois was gunning for all along. :shrug: I could be wrong, but even if not I don't know why some people gave him back his own instead of staying calm and civil.

 

bdp

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So, mission accomplished?  As a complete sideline observer it sure seemed to me that that's what Francois was gunning for all along. :shrug: I could be wrong, but even if not I don't know why some people gave him back his own instead of staying calm and civil. 

 

bdp

 

yea...I know. It's funny when people rant about how big an asshole someone is, yet they sink right down to the insulting level... :nono:

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So, mission accomplished?  As a complete sideline observer it sure seemed to me that that's what Francois was gunning for all along. :shrug: I could be wrong, but even if not I don't know why some people gave him back his own instead of staying calm and civil. 

 

bdp

 

I think I know why.

Although it is practical and rational to avoid "feeding the troll", it is also practical and rational to stand up to the bully. I can't speak for others, but it is the second that underlay my responses to him.

 

I've seen many an Ex-C member do this with Goldie, Danny, and others. I don't see why Francois merited better.

 

He did liven things up a bit, the way obnoxious people do. :grin:

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Well, the webmaster has asked me to leave. Goodbye everyone !

Now, now, I thought you were all about the truth? Didn't anyone teach you about lies of omission?

 

Perfectly in line with your character. Good riddance.

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Not to my knowledge.

 

It's too bad. I like to hear what Franc has to say, and I was actually very excited to see him posting here. I wish things could have gone a bit more civil, because I would have liked to have seen him stay.

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