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Can you help but do evil? I do not see how. Do you?
Posted: 20 August 2012 08:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]
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Greatest I am - 20 August 2012 08:51 AM

I agree to disagree.

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DL

We disagree because you’re wrong. You “agree to disagree” because you know you can’t prove your point. You lost.

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Posted: 20 August 2012 09:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]
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Occam. - 20 August 2012 08:55 AM
Greatest I am - 20 August 2012 08:09 AM
Occam. - 19 August 2012 05:20 PM

I’m driving in the left lane of a two lane on my side road.  Traffic is heavy.  We come to a sign that says “merge left”.  When I reach the merge point, everyone is taking turns, but, I have the advantage of being in the left lane. I have the choice of staying very close to the car in front of me or leaving enough space for the car beside me in the right lane to merge in front of me.  I choose the later action, and I don’t think, “what a good boy I am” or “I hope he does the same for me if we are ever in the reverse situation” or “I’m benefiting society.”  I do it without even thinking.  It’s just part of the morality of a human social group.

Occam

As it should be but the benefits that you are not thinking of are still there.

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DL

And you have just given the answer to your original question.  The answer is YES, one can.

Occam

Sometimes. I agree if the need for competing has been assuaged by inheriting the wherewithal and resources to sustain you without ever competing.

Even then though, I think that most would challenge themselves to compete just to improve what they are.

Even here, you compete for the supremacy of your ideas against those you disagree with.

Regards
DL

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Posted: 20 August 2012 09:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]
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Two thoughts I had upon reading this thread:

1. Like Occam, I hate the word “evil”. In my opinion, all human behavior falls on a spectrum somewhere between what might hypothetically be called “pure good” and “pure bad”. I’d guess that 75% or better of all human behavior probably falls very close to the middle of that spectrum, like a bell curve. Of course, it’s even more complicated than that, but the point is very few acts (and no persons) can be considered entirely good or entirely bad.

2. You can analyze good acts forever, looking at personal motivation, etc. Who knows what factors lead us to act in certain ways? The point, IMHO, is not to pick apart the reasons. The point is to get out there and do good.

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“I am patient with stupidity but not with those who are proud of it.”—Edith Sitwell

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Posted: 20 August 2012 09:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 34 ]
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I just want to add one more thing. To say that altruism has evolved because of selfishness (or rather, the “selfishness” of our genes) doesn’t mean that an altruistic act is ipso facto selfish. One may as well say that you can’t ever love another person because “deep down” you love them for your own self-serving purposes. Nonsense. Altruism is as real as love, even though they both have evolved for “selfish” reasons.

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Posted: 20 August 2012 09:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 35 ]
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FreeInKy - 20 August 2012 09:05 AM

Two thoughts I had upon reading this thread:

1. Like Occam, I hate the word “evil”. In my opinion, all human behavior falls on a spectrum somewhere between what might hypothetically be called “pure good” and “pure bad”. I’d guess that 75% or better of all human behavior probably falls very close to the middle of that spectrum, like a bell curve. Of course, it’s even more complicated than that, but the point is very few acts (and no persons) can be considered entirely good or entirely bad.

I agree. Most, unless rich, as I indicated above, must do some of each. Cooperate and compete.
And yes. It probably is more of a bell curve than a simple graph. I do not see most of us in the middle as you say. I see way more people cooperating than competing. That is better in terms of survival and that is shown by that third clip I gave in the O P. 

2. You can analyze good acts forever, looking at personal motivation, etc. Who knows what factors lead us to act in certain ways? The point, IMHO, is not to pick apart the reasons. The point is to get out there and do good.

When we can for sure but if we do not also know why we do evil, then we will just keep doing it without looking for the solution to it. Those who do evil through competition arte forced to. If those conditions can be better controlled, then he will not have to do evil thanks to having to compete.

Regards
DL

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Posted: 20 August 2012 10:26 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 36 ]
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Greatest I am - 20 August 2012 09:41 AM

When we can for sure but if we do not also know why we do evil, then we will just keep doing it without looking for the solution to it. Those who do evil through competition arte forced to. If those conditions can be better controlled, then he will not have to do evil thanks to having to compete.

question

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Posted: 20 August 2012 10:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 37 ]
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FreeInKy - 20 August 2012 10:26 AM
Greatest I am - 20 August 2012 09:41 AM

When we can for sure but if we do not also know why we do evil, then we will just keep doing it without looking for the solution to it. Those who do evil through competition arte forced to. If those conditions can be better controlled, then he will not have to do evil thanks to having to compete.

question

LOL

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Posted: 20 August 2012 11:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 38 ]
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FreeInKy - 20 August 2012 10:26 AM
Greatest I am - 20 August 2012 09:41 AM

When we can for sure but if we do not also know why we do evil, then we will just keep doing it without looking for the solution to it. Those who do evil through competition arte forced to. If those conditions can be better controlled, then he will not have to do evil thanks to having to compete.

question

Competition causes the harm. How can man stop competing for resources?
Cooperation does not cause harm. How can we always cooperate?

How, other than competing for resources, can resources de divides so that none have to compete for them.
Full control of resources means full control of the buying and selling and in religious terms, that would mean all locking ourselves into a demographic position and that kills the notion of human freedom. Freedom is a myth to me but what many think they have.

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DL

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Posted: 20 August 2012 12:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 39 ]
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Well, that clears it up.

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“I am patient with stupidity but not with those who are proud of it.”—Edith Sitwell

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Posted: 20 August 2012 06:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 40 ]
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No, reasonable competition can be worthwhile.  There’s a Libertarian friend in my Wednesday lunch group.  We respect each other and enjoy arguing politics, i.e., competing.  Neither of us convinces the other, but being challenged makes both of us think through our ideas more precisely and helps us to clarify our own thoughts.  In this case competition benefits both of us.

Aspirin did a good job as an analgesic, but it didn’t last too long.  Because of competition a pharmaceutical company developed naproxyn which lasts about four times as long.  Had there been no competition, there would have been no motivation to develop improved analgesics beyond something that worked well.

Occam

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Posted: 20 August 2012 07:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 41 ]
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I tend to agree with GIA on a few points he made.

Pure competition for survival weeds out the less able. This is the fundamental premise of natural selection. In fact entire species have disappeared because they were unable to compete. This is the nature of a predatory/prey competitive relationship between individuals and species.

OTOH, a symbiotic (cooperative) relationship such as exists between bees and flowers promotes a parallel growth of both species and the result of this symbiosis also provides 70% of the worlds food supply. IMO, this is an example from which humans can learn great lessons. Instead, we have managed to corrupt and pollute the bees environment, which may well result in extinction of the bees and wipe out entire unrelated species which depend on flowering plants for survival.
In the ocean there are fish-cleaning stations tended by little fish who fearlessly enter the mouths of much larger fish and clean them from unwanted organisms. This is not just a symbiosis between two specific species, there seems to be a protocol where any fish gets a good cleaning if they refrain from eating the cleaner fishes.
from wiki,

Cleaner fish are fish that provide a service to other fish species by removing dead skin and ectoparasites.[1] This cleaning symbiosis is an example of mutualism, an ecological interaction that benefits both parties involved. A wide variety of fishes have been observed to display cleaning behaviors including wrasses, cichlids, catfish, and gobies, as well as by a number of different species of cleaner shrimp. By convergent evolution, different species of cleaner fish often resemble each other. There is also at least one predatory mimic, the sabre-toothed blenny, that mimics cleaner fish but in fact feeds on healthy scales and mucus.

The problem lies in the human ability to choose between a competitive or a symbiotic relationship.
Native Americans who lived in symbiosis with nature for thousands of years, were almost wiped out by the land grabbing Europeans in a few decades. Breaking treaties which promised cooperation, placing bounties on the scalps of these heathens, or illegal property manipulations which displaced entire populations.

IMO that period in our history was a period of pure evil, justified by the notion that natives (and later blacks) were less than humans and therefore were not entitled to what they had.

When self-interest for a share turns into greed to have it all, evil deeds always seem to follow.

[ Edited: 20 August 2012 07:57 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 20 August 2012 08:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 42 ]
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Since altruism isn’t an absolute in all cases, it’s not a necessary condition. But in all acts, a self-serving purpose can be always be found. The concept of the selfish-gene is sufficient to be extended to behaviors of all living things. A particular ant in a colony may serve a function that its genetics calls for, but because you can still distract even an ant from its ‘job’ by chemicals causing it to act selfish, it shows that altruism is only a secondary function that starts with the individual.

There’s the saying, “Never look a gift-horse in the mouth.” But this saying wouldn’t exist if people truly never had reasons to be suspicious of one’s apparent act of altruism. I remember a friend of mine who seemed dumb-founded about how she kept getting creeps after her in the bar. But upon careful examination, it always seemed to turn out that she began by accepting a drink from one of them. I told her that it was obvious: stop accepting a free offer if you don’t like the person and they won’t bother you.

Advertisers know this well. People are innately selfish. If they weren’t, then apparent “free” offers would never be effective.

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Posted: 21 August 2012 07:29 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 43 ]
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Occam. - 20 August 2012 06:56 PM

No, reasonable competition can be worthwhile.  There’s a Libertarian friend in my Wednesday lunch group.  We respect each other and enjoy arguing politics, i.e., competing.  Neither of us convinces the other, but being challenged makes both of us think through our ideas more precisely and helps us to clarify our own thoughts.  In this case competition benefits both of us.

Aspirin did a good job as an analgesic, but it didn’t last too long.  Because of competition a pharmaceutical company developed naproxyn which lasts about four times as long.  Had there been no competition, there would have been no motivation to develop improved analgesics beyond something that worked well.

Occam

I agree that competition is good. Evolution agrees as in this case, the fittest was found and the weakest lowered in rank.

As to your competing in ideas with your friend, you would learn something if he beat you but FYPOV, you would still feel that evil visited you thanks to your poor thinking. Your ego would be hurt even as the oportunity is given for you to improve your thinking.

A small evil true, but evil nevertheless.

Another scenario might be that he destroyed your argument without having one to replace it and in this one, you would learn nothing other than the fact that you were wrong.

Regards
DL

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Posted: 21 August 2012 07:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 44 ]
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WriteuU

Thanks and well put.

Regards
DL

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Posted: 21 August 2012 07:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 45 ]
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Scott Mayers

+ 1

Regards
DL

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