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> Dont we need ethics? or is it useless?, there is thousends of users here, but no topic nor post here?
Guest
post Apr 25, 2006, 06:58 AM
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Quite interesting for me personally is that...

Many of the greatest minds in history have speculated, argued about this subject

But it seems in today’s world there is no place for ethics.
It is almost absurd talk about ethics in business, politics or justice.

But why???


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Rick
post Apr 25, 2006, 11:20 AM
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What are the open questions in ethics? Doesn't the golden rule provide guidance for everyone?
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Guest
post Apr 26, 2006, 02:55 AM
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QUOTE(Rick @ Apr 25, 11:20 AM) *

What are the open questions in ethics? Doesn't the golden rule provide guidance for everyone?



The golden rule that you have in mind really provides guidance for everyone - but on a basic level during personal is development. But if an individual encounters other Golden rule: "He who has the money makes the rules"

In today’s society the confrontation of these two golden rules, which occurs more or less to everyone distorts the concepts of ethics... or not?

Also that brings up question about altruism, which in my opinion does no exist in our existence.
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post Apr 26, 2006, 04:55 AM
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QUOTE(Guest @ Apr 26, 02:55 AM) *

QUOTE(Rick @ Apr 25, 11:20 AM) *

What are the open questions in ethics? Doesn't the golden rule provide guidance for everyone?



The golden rule that you have in mind really provides guidance for everyone - but on a basic level during personal is development. But if an individual encounters other Golden rule: "He who has the money makes the rules"

In today’s society the confrontation of these two golden rules, which occurs more or less to everyone distorts the concepts of ethics... or not?

Also that brings up question about altruism, which in my opinion does no exist in our existence.

Ethics, the golden rule are a basic necessity (like bread is to a single person) for survival as a species. Born out of our need to move forward in progress as a species. It should be followed regardless of wether our neighbor adheres to it or not. We should lead by example. It's like traffic laws on the road. Just because everybody is driving on the shoulder to avoid the traffic jam, it doesn't make it right for you to follow through. You are braking the law at your own risk. Except with ethics, there's more at stake: Progress, survival. The golden rule of Ethics is a moral responsability of those who know it and understand it.
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Lao_Tzu
post Apr 26, 2006, 09:17 AM
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What is this 'Golden Rule' that is being discussed? Can someone tell me? It sounds like something Kant might have come up with.

I was reading this passage from Nietzsche the other day, which I think is very interesting, and might have something to do with this discussion. From "First and Last Things", Chapter 25.

~~~
Private and oecumenical morality - Since the belief has ceased that a God directs in general the fate of the world and, in spite of all apparent crookedness in the path of humanity, leads it on gloriously, men themselves must set themselves oecumenical aims embracing the whole earth. The older morality, especially that of Kant, required from the individual actions which were desired from all men - that was a delightfully naive thing, as if each knew off-hand what course of action was beneficial to the whole of humanity, and consequently which actions in general were desirable; it is a theory like that of free trade, taking for granted that the general harmony must result of itself according to innate laws of amelioration. Perhaps a future contemplation of the needs of humanity will show that it is by no means desirable that all men should act alike; in the interest of oecumenical aims it might rather be that for whole sections of mankind, special, and perhaps under certain circumstances even evil, tasks would have to be set. In any case, if mankind is not to destroy itself by such a conscious universal rule, there must previously be found, as a scientific standard for oecumenical aims, a knowledge of the conditions of culture superior to what has hitherto been attained. Herein lies the enormous task of the great minds of the next century.
~~~
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Lao_Tzu
post Apr 26, 2006, 09:37 AM
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Oh okay, I think i've found it: Do unto others only what you would have done to yourself.

As if everyone had the same tastes! The rule works insofar as (assumptions imminent) everybody wants to remain alive, unraped, unstolen from, etc. That's cool. But what about masochists and their ilk? This problem is at least partially circumvented by a passive expression of the Golden Rule:

Do nothing unto others that you would not have done unto yourself.

Nietzsche, at least, would have done with all of this. Injustice, that outcome most hated by proponents of rule-based ethics, is not only inevitable, but necessary. This from "First and Last Things", chapter 32:

Injustice necessary - All judgments on the value of life are illogically developed, and therefore unjust. The inexactitude of the judgment lies, firstly, in the manner in which the material is presented, namely very imperfectly; secondly, in the manner in which the conclusion is formed out of it; and thirdly, in the fact that every separate element of the material is again the result of vitiated recognition, and this, too, of necessity. For instance, no experience of an individual, however near he may stand to us, can be perfect, so that we could have a logical right to make a complete estimate of him; all estimates are rash, and must be so. Finally, the standard by which we measure our nature, is not of unalterable dimensions - we have moods and vacillations, and yet we should have to recognise ourselves as a fixed standard in order to estimate correctly the relation of any thing whatsoever to ourselves. From this it will, perhaps, follow that we should make no judgments at all; if only one could live without making estimations, without having likes and dislikes! [Buddha might nod at this juncture - ed.] For all dislike is connected with an estimation, as well as all inclination. An impulse towards or away from anything without a feeling that something advantageous is desired, something injurious avoided, an impulse without any kind of conscious valuation of the worth of the aim does not exist in man. [Buddha might not nod at this juncture - ed.] We are from the beginning illogical, and therefore unjust beings, and can recognise this; it is one of the greatest and most inexplicable discords of existence.
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Neural
post Apr 26, 2006, 09:37 AM
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Well clearly the Christian extremists in the US feel the need to impose their warped brand of ethics on everyone. In fact, isn't that the definition of an extremist, someone who tries to impose their brand of ethics on everyone else?
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Lao_Tzu
post Apr 26, 2006, 10:13 AM
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Yeah, I suppose most extremists, if they believe that their cause is The One Most High Truth, would feel justified imposing it on everyone else. Silly, really.

Damned extremists are responsible for everything weird that's going on around here. That's my motto.
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post Apr 26, 2006, 10:44 AM
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QUOTE(Lao_Tzu @ Apr 26, 09:37 AM) *

Injustice, that outcome most hated by proponents of rule-based ethics, is not only inevitable, but necessary.

Necessary for what, Lao? Give me a practical example within the context of this threat, or even this forum. Or just everyday practical.
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post Apr 26, 2006, 07:23 PM
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QUOTE(code buttons @ Apr 26, 10:44 AM) *

QUOTE(Lao_Tzu @ Apr 26, 09:37 AM) *

Injustice, that outcome most hated by proponents of rule-based ethics, is not only inevitable, but necessary.

Necessary for what, Lao? Give me a practical example within the context of this threat, or even this forum. Or just everyday practical.


Well, I think I see your point better, Lao. Injustice is absolutely necessary for the linear and upward advancement of progress. Criminal Justice, for example: New laws need to be enacted and old ones have to be revised in order to keep up with the constant change of our character as a specie. Injustice in the form of an innocent man being wrongfully convicted might trigger a new set of laws that will avoid the same mistake from happening. But this kind of rationalization may bring forth a new set of conjectures, doesn't it? A paradox altogether! So, the question becomes: How do we deal with (accept and carry-out) injustice along with rationality and the golden rule of ethics as we advance forward in progress? Hmm! Enlighten us, genious!
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maximus242
post Apr 26, 2006, 07:29 PM
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Bah laws will always be a problem because of diffrent perspectives, people have diffrent views on things and it is what allows us to advance. It also means no matter what law you make or lack of, you will still have people pissed because to some murder is simply a quest for survival, to others it is autrocisty..
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Lao_Tzu
post Apr 28, 2006, 03:21 AM
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QUOTE(code buttons @ Apr 27, 05:23 AM) *

QUOTE(code buttons @ Apr 26, 10:44 AM) *

QUOTE(Lao_Tzu @ Apr 26, 09:37 AM) *

Injustice, that outcome most hated by proponents of rule-based ethics, is not only inevitable, but necessary.

Necessary for what, Lao? Give me a practical example within the context of this threat, or even this forum. Or just everyday practical.


Well, I think I see your point better, Lao. Injustice is absolutely necessary for the linear and upward advancement of progress. Criminal Justice, for example: New laws need to be enacted and old ones have to be revised in order to keep up with the constant change of our character as a specie. Injustice in the form of an innocent man being wrongfully convicted might trigger a new set of laws that will avoid the same mistake from happening. But this kind of rationalization may bring forth a new set of conjectures, doesn't it? A paradox altogether! So, the question becomes: How do we deal with (accept and carry-out) injustice along with rationality and the golden rule of ethics as we advance forward in progress? Hmm! Enlighten us, genious!


I'm no genius! I'll not have that sort of talk around here, young man. tongue.gif

Well, I think that Nietzsche's point goes beyond the case of a mistaken court decision, which might result in a wrongful sentence, one that is conventionally unjust. The idea here is that a correct court decision would have been a just one - if the man really had been a murderer then life imprisonment would have been a just outcome, conventionally speaking.

Maximus242 has the crux of the matter, I think.

Nietzsche points out that all of our judgments are unjust, and the here the word judgment is meant in a more general case than court judgments - it is used in a sense that includes all valuations, estimates, and anything of that sort. The judgment that life imprisonment is a suitable penalty for a murderer is an unjust judgment, for example. In summary, this is because we cannot know the true state of things, so all our estimations are misguided. Since we know our estimations are misuigded, any judgments that result from our estimations are unjust. Therefore, all our judgments are unjust.

Therefore injustice is necessary. And in this case, necessary does not mean "needed for progress" (though it might serve that meaning too, without great difficulty). But at bottom it means, at least, "arising of necessity": no scenario could but give rise to injustice - injustice is a necessary result of any judgment.

What follows from all of this is that we cannot apply value judgments to anyone except ourselves, and even to ourselves we can apply only the most inarticulable of value judgments, for as soon as we try to articulate them (and the process by which we arrive at them), we find them to be unjustified, and therefore invalid. What Nietzsche therefore proposes is a completely individual (oecumenical, unless I'm misguided in my intepretation of that very strange word) morality.

(Nietzsche is the hot shit, in my opinion. And Buddha. Strange mix, but I find they work well together.)
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Lao_Tzu
post Apr 28, 2006, 03:47 AM
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(As a categorically irrelevant but notable aside, I wonder why the category "ethics" is a subset of the category "theology". This would seem to imply that ethics is intertwined with theism, or is something more than tangentially involved with God, which - except perhaps for eudaimonic ethics - is probably not the case.)
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Rick
post May 01, 2006, 01:35 PM
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QUOTE(Lao_Tzu @ Apr 26, 10:37 AM) *

Oh okay, I think i've found it: Do unto others only what you would have done to yourself.

As if everyone had the same tastes! The rule works insofar as (assumptions imminent) everybody wants to remain alive, unraped, unstolen from, etc. That's cool. But what about masochists and their ilk?

A more common phrasing of the Golden Rule is "do unto others as you would have them do unto you," and it's not just passive restraint.

Suppose you are drowning and it is within the power of another to save you. Would you have the other save you? Of course, so if you see someone in trouble and you can help without danger to yourself, the Golden Rule indicates you should help him. It's what you would want if the places were reversed.

The Dalai Lama had an even better way to express something similar:

"When one sees himself in others, whom can he harm?"

That also implies "whom can he fail to help?"

Regarding strange tastes and masochism, if one is unsure what is really helping or hurting, then the best course is to ask.
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post Sep 20, 2006, 01:36 AM
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Should the goal of the human race be survival? If so, what are we surviving for?

The golden rule does not give us enough useful information - and is likely to cause one to assume that what they would like is necessarily what another would like - a dangerous assumption.





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post Sep 20, 2006, 03:54 AM
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QUOTE(Lao_Tzu @ Apr 26, 2006, 10:37 AM) *

Oh okay, I think i've found it: Do unto others only what you would have done to yourself.

As if everyone had the same tastes! The rule works insofar as (assumptions imminent) everybody wants to remain alive, unraped, unstolen from, etc. That's cool. But what about masochists and their ilk? This problem is at least partially circumvented by a passive expression of the Golden Rule:

Do nothing unto others that you would not have done unto yourself.

Nietzsche, at least, would have done with all of this. Injustice, that outcome most hated by proponents of rule-based ethics, is not only inevitable, but necessary. This from "First and Last Things", chapter 32:

Injustice necessary - All judgments on the value of life are illogically developed, and therefore unjust. The inexactitude of the judgment lies, firstly, in the manner in which the material is presented, namely very imperfectly; secondly, in the manner in which the conclusion is formed out of it; and thirdly, in the fact that every separate element of the material is again the result of vitiated recognition, and this, too, of necessity. For instance, no experience of an individual, however near he may stand to us, can be perfect, so that we could have a logical right to make a complete estimate of him; all estimates are rash, and must be so. Finally, the standard by which we measure our nature, is not of unalterable dimensions - we have moods and vacillations, and yet we should have to recognise ourselves as a fixed standard in order to estimate correctly the relation of any thing whatsoever to ourselves. From this it will, perhaps, follow that we should make no judgments at all; if only one could live without making estimations, without having likes and dislikes! [Buddha might nod at this juncture - ed.] For all dislike is connected with an estimation, as well as all inclination. An impulse towards or away from anything without a feeling that something advantageous is desired, something injurious avoided, an impulse without any kind of conscious valuation of the worth of the aim does not exist in man. [Buddha might not nod at this juncture - ed.] We are from the beginning illogical, and therefore unjust beings, and can recognise this; it is one of the greatest and most inexplicable discords of existence.


True, laws are made with the full knowledge that they will be broken - because we know that our laws conflict with human nature. The design of man makes a perfect ethical system where laws are not broken impossible. Humans are setup to suffer - and when a human breaks a law we convince them that they had free-will to do so and punish them. Even though free-will is a theory that has never been proven and seems highly unlikely. Modern psychologists acknowledge that genes interacting with environmental variables shape our behavior.

This is not a solution or valid approach to societal design.

We'll need standards in order to function as a society - and it will take a long time to replace suffering with informational equivalents (where needed) - in the interim we should focus on teaching through pleasure rather than pain if possible.
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