Is an aptitute for logic necessary to be a moral person?

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kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 02:05 am
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;108721 wrote:
Well, Data, it's like this. Irrational means not endowed with reason. But I felt that you would dislike the word "irrational" anyway, and question its appropriateness. So I looked it up, confirmed what I thought, and used it. Your motive for questioning the word was itself irrational. So I guess I should not call you Data.

Don't be offended at the Star Trek reference. I've grown accustomed to your constant disagreement. It's almost like hearing the ocean at night.



You think that oysters are irrational? They are not endowed with reason. And neither is my couch.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 02:19 am
@Kroni,
I suppose they are irrational then. At least according to the dictionary. But the dictionary is not some divine authority. It's a guess at consensus. It's these abstract words and their all-too-various application that demonstrate real-world superiority of rhetoric to logic. The sophist has the advantage of knowing he's full of s***.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 02:27 am
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;108729 wrote:
I suppose they are irrational then. At least according to the dictionary. But the dictionary is not some divine authority. It's a guess at consensus. It's these abstract words and their all-too-various application that demonstrate real-world superiority of rhetoric to logic. The sophist has the advantage of knowing he's full of s***.


Oysters and my couch are not irrational. And the dictionary does not say they are. The dictionary is not a guess at consensus. A good dictionary is the result of collating and distilling all kinds of uses of the the word in question taken from many such uses. It is hardly a guess. I don't understand the rest of what you wrote.
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 02:28 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;108697 wrote:
Hume said that "reason is, and ought to be, the slave of the passions". What he meant is that after reason has told us which choices there are, what the consequences of each choice are likely to be, and what means we have to take, after that, we still have to make the choice, and that choice is not one of reason, but one of passion. What choice we make after reason has done it work, is not one of reason. Not that it is irrational, as you say, because choice is neither rational nor irrational. It is non-rational.


What he said. .-.-.-.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 02:39 am
@Kroni,
I posted the definition for you.

I know you don't understand me. It amuses me, finally. It's not like I cooked up this brew myself. Rorty, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer, Hegel, Spengler, Bacon, Hobbes.
Those are my influences. What are yours, if you are willing to say?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 02:40 am
@Emil,
Emil;108737 wrote:
What he said. .-.-.-.


What who said about what?

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 03:41 AM ----------

Reconstructo;108740 wrote:
I posted the definition for you.

I know you don't understand me. It amuses me, finally. It's not like I cooked up this brew myself. Rorty, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer, Hegel, Spengler, Bacon, Hobbes.
Those are my influences. What are yours, if you are willing to say?


Sorry. You have lost me. The dictionary definition neither says, nor implies, what you claim.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 02:43 am
@Kroni,
Who are your favorite philosophers?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 02:47 am
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;108745 wrote:
Who are your favorite philosophers?


Socrates, Hume, Russell, Quine, Descartes, Spinoza, Kierkegaard, Wittgenstein, G.E. Moore, Charles S. Pierce. In fact, any philosopher who argues for what he asserts. Why?
 
Emil
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 02:56 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;108741 wrote:
What who said about what?.


It is a common expression that means that I agree with what you said.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 03:00 am
@Kroni,
We are what we eat. You seem to come more from the rationalist, logical side. I like the metaphorical hermeneutics side. But I started with Socrates. And yet before that I found a textbook of formal logic on sale that totally engrossed me. Went through it on my own as a teen. But Freud & Jung were as significant as any philosopher. Psychology is inseparable from philosophy. It's all of a piece. Psychology, "literature" and philosophy are all rich with metaphor. It's just that philosophy is where the concepts are stacked the highest. Words about words about words.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 03:01 am
@Emil,
Emil;108751 wrote:
It is a common expression that means that I agree with what you said.


But Hume said it, I didn't.
 
salima
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 06:48 am
@TickTockMan,
TickTockMan;101913 wrote:
Let's have a logical thought experiment and see what it tells us.

Or, as Jigsaw says, "Let's play a game."

A new virus has been engineered by a vengeful group of lunatics bent on saving the planet, and, apparently, with a grudge against you personally.

The virus is highly contagious, and has been engineered to be transmissible through any and all vectors. The creators of the virus predict that 80% of the people who are exposed to the virus will become infected.

The virus is non-lethal, but will, however, render 60-80% of its hosts utterly and permanently sterile.

A three year old child and its mother have been infected with this virus and placed in an airtight 4 foot by 4 foot steel box in a crowded park. You can see them through a small portal in the side of the box.

On the box, there is a timer. At 5:00 p.m. the timer will trigger a number of blowtorches that will incinerate all traces of the virus in the box. There are no other existing traces of the virus anywhere else, and all the notes on its creation are in the box. In other words, when the contents of the box are incinerated there will be no more threat, ever, of this particular virus. Unfortunately the mother and child will also be incinerated in this process.

There are two buttons on the box, one marked "OPEN" the other marked "SHOOT".

If you press the button marked "OPEN", the following will occur: the blowtorches will deactivate; the lid of the box will open and a series of nozzles will begin spraying a fine mist of virus contaminated water into the breeze; a panel will open and free the mother and child.

If you press the button marked "SHOOT" a member of the lunatic group on the roof of a nearby building with a sniper rifle will kill you, quickly and cleanly. He will not miss. Also, when you push the "SHOOT" button, a vapor will be released into the box that utterly neutralizes the virus in the child and in the tanks of virus-contaminated water. There will be no further danger from this virus whatsoever. The box will then open, and the mother and child will released completely unharmed.

You have been given all of the information above, and you are at least 95% sure this is not a hoax.

You are standing next to the box and you can read the display on the timer.

It is now 4:57 p.m.


actually, this one is far too easy. i am not alone in feeling this way, so there would be lots of takers to press the 'shoot' button. this would save the mother and child, destroy the virus, give me a way off this planet, and make meaningful the end of a rather unremarkable if not toxic life.

now the trolley is a dilemma...i doubt if i have the strength to push the fat man, but the switches i could probably manage. dont know what i would do there...i would say call for help but i assume there is no one to hear me.
i assume also there is no time to attract the attention of the worker before diverting the train towards him so that he has time to get away. i suppose there is no option other than what the dilemma provides? maybe i would walk away, saying there may be a cosmic plan here that i dont understand and by intervening i would screw up something i know nothing about. i would be taking the risk of being damned for killing five people-but taking my judgment call out of the issue, since i believe no one has a right to judge anyone else. maybe the one man working is worth the other five, the other five could be ....(here insert the word that best describes what segment of humanity that you most despise, i.e. terrorists, serial killers, etc)....i cant make that call, so i let the chips fall where they may.

---------- Post added 12-07-2009 at 06:20 PM ----------

sorry-
i didnt mention it, but i believe i used both logic and emotion to reach those conclusions. i like to think i try to balance them rather than favor one over the other all the time, but it is hard to be objective about things like that. using both would make the best moral judgments i believe.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 07:12 am
@salima,
salima;108781 wrote:

sorry-
i didnt mention it, but i believe i used both logic and emotion to reach those conclusions. i like to think i try to balance them rather than favor one over the other all the time, but it is hard to be objective about things like that. using both would make the best moral judgments i believe.


Using emotion to reach a decision is not rational. But you have to use feeling to make a decision. That is Hume's point.
 
salima
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 07:21 am
@Kroni,
i thought emotions were feelings...

ok then...what he said...
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 07:30 am
@salima,
salima;108788 wrote:
i thought emotions were feelings...

ok then...what he said...


Yes, they are a kind of feeling.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Mon 7 Dec, 2009 04:39 pm
@Kroni,
"Emotion" and "feeling" are dead metaphors applied to otherwise indescribable subjective states. "aptitude for logic" is a vague phrase. What kind of logic? Formal logic, or persuasiveness?

In either case, I say that neither is necessary for what I would describe as being a "moral person."
 
 

 
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