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Do non-human animals have free will?
Posted: 30 November 2012 08:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 271 ]
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StephenLawrence - 30 November 2012 01:25 AM
TimB - 29 November 2012 11:42 PM

So, Stephen, Bottom line:

You think that is of utmost importance that we, humans, all believe the truth of the statement “There but by the grace of chance, go I.”

Is that the jist of it?

Yep.

A good definition of libertarian free will is the belief we have power that negates that.

People will argue either that we need this ‘illusion’ or that it’s benign.

Neither is true and actually I think most sitting around talking about this are benefiting from being free from the illusion and the conversation being free from much libertarian free will based snark.

Stephen

Huh? What are we free from?

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Posted: 30 November 2012 09:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 272 ]
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GdB - 29 November 2012 11:33 PM

But what are your criteria then to say a punishment is fair or not?

To me a punishment is fair when I feel it’s fair. It can never really be fair or unfair, since fairness is relative. If a chain reaction in my brain results in a neurone going zig, I feel the punishment is fair. If a chain reaction in a criminal’s brain results in a neurone going zag, then he feels the punishment is not fair. If the brain lacks the structure to make the neurones go either zig or zag, such as that of a platypus or a duck, then the feeling of fairness never comes up.

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Posted: 30 November 2012 10:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 273 ]
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George - 30 November 2012 09:10 AM
GdB - 29 November 2012 11:33 PM

But what are your criteria then to say a punishment is fair or not?

To me a punishment is fair when I feel it’s fair. It can never really be fair or unfair, since fairness is relative.

Yes, therefore I asked your criteria.

George - 30 November 2012 09:10 AM

If a chain reaction in my brain results in a neurone going zig, I feel the punishment is fair. If a chain reaction in a criminal’s brain results in a neurone going zag, then he feels the punishment is not fair. If the brain lacks the structure to make the neurones go either zig or zag, such as that of a platypus or a duck, then the feeling of fairness never comes up.

So if you feel treated unfair by, say your state, then when you protest, you argue with ‘You see, It is not fair, because my neuron did zog.’ And then the functionary replies ‘OK, yes, you are right, we will correct this.’ C’mon George, I nearly do not need the reductio ad absurdum anymore, you can do it on your own.

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Posted: 30 November 2012 10:55 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 274 ]
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George - 30 November 2012 08:52 AM

Huh? What are we free from?

From belief in libertarian free will to varying degrees.

Your disbelief is having an influence on you but less than it would if you were not so confused, as illustrated in the following:

Nobody is guilty of anything, because nobody could have done otherwise. But that’s where it ends for me; I am lucky enough to be a sane person (i.e., similar to most people around me) who acts under the illusion that people are responsible for their actions.

Stephen

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Posted: 30 November 2012 11:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 275 ]
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GdB - 30 November 2012 10:15 AM

So if you feel treated unfair by, say your state, then when you protest, you argue with ‘You see, It is not fair, because my neuron did zog.’

No, when I feel I am not being treated fairly, I’ll say, “it’s not fair.” I only discuss philosophy when I wear my philosophy hat. I will also say that the sun is rising, although I know it’s the Earth that is doing the moving.

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Posted: 30 November 2012 12:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 276 ]
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StephenLawrence - 30 November 2012 10:55 AM
George - 30 November 2012 08:52 AM

Huh? What are we free from?

From belief in libertarian free will to varying degrees.

Your disbelief is having an influence on you but less than it would if you were not so confused, as illustrated in the following:

Nobody is guilty of anything, because nobody could have done otherwise. But that’s where it ends for me; I am lucky enough to be a sane person (i.e., similar to most people around me) who acts under the illusion that people are responsible for their actions.

Stephen

Yes, what I believe has an impact on me; although that is a truism, so I don’t see what’s the point of saying it. None of that, however, will impact if I have free will or “how much” of it I have. You can be smarter than Plato and still have as much of free will as a worm, IOW, none.

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Posted: 30 November 2012 12:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 277 ]
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George - 30 November 2012 12:07 PM
StephenLawrence - 30 November 2012 10:55 AM
George - 30 November 2012 08:52 AM

Huh? What are we free from?

From belief in libertarian free will to varying degrees.

Your disbelief is having an influence on you but less than it would if you were not so confused, as illustrated in the following:

Nobody is guilty of anything, because nobody could have done otherwise. But that’s where it ends for me; I am lucky enough to be a sane person (i.e., similar to most people around me) who acts under the illusion that people are responsible for their actions.

Stephen

Yes, what I believe has an impact on me; although that is a truism, so I don’t see what’s the point of saying it. None of that, however, will impact if I have free will or “how much” of it I have. You can be smarter than Plato and still have as much of free will as a worm, IOW, none.

If I were smarter than Plato, I would be able to contemplate far more intellectual ideas.  Isn’t that a kind of relative freedom?

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As a fabrication of our own consciousness, our assignations of meaning are no less “real”, but since humans and the fabrications of our consciousness are routinely fraught with error, it makes sense, to me, to, sometimes, question such fabrications.

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Posted: 30 November 2012 12:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 278 ]
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TimB - 30 November 2012 12:19 PM

If I were smarter than Plato, I would be able to contemplate far more intellectual ideas.  Isn’t that a kind of relative freedom?

Sure, but it has nothing to do with free will.

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Posted: 30 November 2012 12:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 279 ]
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George - 30 November 2012 12:22 PM
TimB - 30 November 2012 12:19 PM

If I were smarter than Plato, I would be able to contemplate far more intellectual ideas.  Isn’t that a kind of relative freedom?

Sure, but it has nothing to do with free will.

I will contemplate that.

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As a fabrication of our own consciousness, our assignations of meaning are no less “real”, but since humans and the fabrications of our consciousness are routinely fraught with error, it makes sense, to me, to, sometimes, question such fabrications.

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Posted: 30 November 2012 12:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 280 ]
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StephenLawrence - 29 November 2012 11:11 PM
Lois - 29 November 2012 09:20 PM

Unfair or not, we’re all determined to do it one way or another.

What we believe is fair influences our behaviour. So if you believe it’s fair to keep slaves that matters.

Determinism has nothing to do with it.

Stephen


Of course it does.  If one believes it’s fair to keep slaves it’s because his/her determining factors created that belief.  The person’s behavior, concerning that belief, would also be determined.

......

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Posted: 30 November 2012 01:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 281 ]
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George - 30 November 2012 12:07 PM

Yes, what I believe has an impact on me; although that is a truism, so I don’t see what’s the point of saying it.

Because it’s the point George.

Take climate change. What people believe about that has an impact and that’s why it matters.

This subject is just like any other, in this regard.

None of that, however, will impact if I have free will or “how much” of it I have. You can be smarter than Plato and still have as much of free will as a worm, IOW, none.

Sure but that is not the point.

Stephen

[ Edited: 30 November 2012 01:17 PM by StephenLawrence ]
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Posted: 30 November 2012 01:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 282 ]
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Lois - 30 November 2012 12:40 PM


Of course it does.  If one believes it’s fair to keep slaves it’s because his/her determining factors created that belief.  The person’s behavior, concerning that belief, would also be determined.

......

Yes but so what?

Stephen

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Posted: 30 November 2012 01:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 283 ]
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StephenLawrence - 30 November 2012 01:04 PM
George - 30 November 2012 12:07 PM

None of that, however, will impact if I have free will or “how much” of it I have. You can be smarter than Plato and still have as much of free will as a worm, IOW, none.

Sure but that is not the point.

As far as free will goes, that is exactly the point.

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Posted: 30 November 2012 01:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 284 ]
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StephenLawrence - 30 November 2012 01:06 PM
Lois - 30 November 2012 12:40 PM


Of course it does.  If one believes it’s fair to keep slaves it’s because his/her determining factors created that belief.  The person’s behavior, concerning that belief, would also be determined.

......

Yes but so what?

Stephen

So what? That we have no free will. That.  grin

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Posted: 30 November 2012 01:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 285 ]
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George - 30 November 2012 01:08 PM
StephenLawrence - 30 November 2012 01:04 PM
George - 30 November 2012 12:07 PM

None of that, however, will impact if I have free will or “how much” of it I have. You can be smarter than Plato and still have as much of free will as a worm, IOW, none.

Sure but that is not the point.

As far as free will goes, that is exactly the point.

Why treat free will differently to other erroneous beliefs, like climate change denial or homeopathy for instance?

Actually it’s just the same.

Stephen

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