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Do non-human animals have free will?
Posted: 28 January 2014 04:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 721 ]
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Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:09 AM

Got no time for word games, sorry.  Hungry is an action as standing is an action.

You got no time for word games….?  You’re playing them right now.
That’s fine. I didn’t expect anything else. I just wonder if you know you’re wrong and like to argue anyways,
or you really believe this stuff you say?

You debate with the guys about the definition of hungry Bryan…you go right ahead.

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Posted: 28 January 2014 04:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 722 ]
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Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:09 AM

  It’s nonsensical to apply Kane’s definition for ultimate responsibility to a want such as hunger.

A want is an action Bryan. Just like the first tiny molecular crystals of ice melting in a snowflake.

Like I said describe to me a want that happens without action and you get the trophy.
Remember neurons firing are actions. So are hormonal secretions. Recalling memory is an action.

If you’d like you can alternately explain where you think wants come from outside this mechanical/chemical/electro system.
It’s your choice….
Just tip over your King now and concede.
Or you can go back to page after page of “If y=xchoice then wantB is =to LFW” or whatever claptrap you guys cook up.

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Posted: 28 January 2014 05:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 723 ]
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Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:29 AM

I think consciousness is evolutionary dead weight if we are determined beings.  A causally determined universe has no need for consciousness

Yeah, for your type of consciousness only. That is, for a ghost in the machine. Consciousness can very well be a byproduct of some other adaptation, one for which the “determined universe does have a need,” whatever that’s supposed to mean.

The problem with you is you treat filosophy like some guy from two thousand years ago, while sitting on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. Just “thinking” is no longer sufficient. The guy on those shores back then might had seen “being hungry” as not being an action because he had no idea of the complicated process undergoing inside our body responsible for this feeling. (BTW, standing is as much of an action as is kicking.) But you should know better—in the meantime at least try to understand the difference between the terms “evolution” and “adaptation.”

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Posted: 28 January 2014 04:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 724 ]
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GdB - 28 January 2014 01:55 AM
Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:29 AM

That’s a marvelous example.  Since there’s no proof of God’s existence (as you say) therefore nobody believes in God (if there’s no reason to believe in God’s existence it stands to reason that belief in God is impossible).  Are we all hard atheists, then?

Argumentum ad populum.

Not at all.  Argumentum ad populum would be the suggestion that since many believe that god exists, therefore god exists.  It’s obvious that’s not what I’m doing.  You asserted that there’s no reason to believe in god.  I noted that many believe in god, and if we apply your premise to that situation, then we end up with a bunch of people who believe in god for no reason.  The point, since you missed it, is that you just proved indeterminism.  grin

Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:29 AM

Exactly.  It’s nonsensical to posit any prior cause of indeterminism.  That’s not a point in your favor.  It simply underscores a tendency on your part to fallaciously beg the question..

Did I ask for a prior cause? Strawman.

Was I done?  Let me know strong version of your argument I failed to address, after my earlier post concludes.

Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:29 AM

On the other hand, I can posit a source of indeterminism via illustrations such as the one I used earlier.  One of colored shapes I described seems to serve as the source of indeterminism in the illustration.

Fine. You illustrated a concept. But what when nothing in reality (except quantum events) fit this concept, what is then the relevance of it? Trying to show that LFW could be a logical coherent concept is at most a first step.

I’ve got no problem with step-by-step.  You?

Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:29 AM

I think consciousness is evolutionary dead weight if we are determined beings.  A causally determined universe has no need for consciousness; there’s nothing causal determinism can’t physically accomplish via an unconscious universe (except indeterminism!).

So you assume that consciousness is something extra, above, or next to, our physical universe.

It’s not an assumption.  Nobody’s ever quantified consciousness.  Consciousness could be an “emergent property” of physical matter or not, but regardless of whether it is, it apparently isn’t needed for physical matter to do as I’ve described.  The consciousness of CFW is a passenger, not a driver.  An unconscious robot could do the same things (p-zombies).

That leads to dualism. Are you a dualist? Do you believe in a soul?

I believe in a soul, but I don’t appeal to it in my arguments for LFW.

Late night edit: how does randomness explain consciousness?

It doesn’t.  Libertarian free will is a better fit for the existence of consciousness.  It allows for thinking to supersede the mechanical and operate according to reason instead of physics.

If it does not, why should I assume that in a determinist universe consciousness cannot arise in the course of evolution?

What’s the evolutionary pressure for consciousness if a p-zombie can do anything a conscious person can do?  It’s not impossible, IMO, for you to have consciousness in a determined universe.  The problem is figuring out why it should exist at all.  Occam’s razor suggests it should be absent in a causally determined universe (needlessly multiplying entities).  Dennett, of course, addresses the problem by assuming that p-zombies can’t do what a conscious being does.  He kind of begs the question.

[ Edited: 28 January 2014 04:19 PM by Bryan ]
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Posted: 28 January 2014 04:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 725 ]
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VYAZMA - 28 January 2014 04:20 AM
Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:09 AM

  It’s nonsensical to apply Kane’s definition for ultimate responsibility to a want such as hunger.

A want is an action Bryan.

Notice how you carefully addressed my counterargument?

Yeah, I didn’t notice either.

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Posted: 28 January 2014 04:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 726 ]
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George - 28 January 2014 05:53 AM
Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:29 AM

I think consciousness is evolutionary dead weight if we are determined beings.  A causally determined universe has no need for consciousness

Yeah, for your type of consciousness only.

How does that follow?  I’m fine with consciousness as an emergent property of matter.  Just not causally determined matter.

That is, for a ghost in the machine. Consciousness can very well be a byproduct of some other adaptation, one for which the “determined universe does have a need,” whatever that’s supposed to mean.

If the “byproduct of some other adaptation” serves no causal purpose above and beyond the physical state that causes it, then it serves no additional purpose.

Think about it.

The problem with you is you treat filosophy like some guy from two thousand years ago, while sitting on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. Just “thinking” is no longer sufficient. The guy on those shores back then might had seen “being hungry” as not being an action because he had no idea of the complicated process undergoing inside our body responsible for this feeling. (BTW, standing is as much of an action as is kicking.)

You’re addressing the argument about as thoroughly as VYAZMA did (which is to say, not at all).

You can take a picture of a a person standing, and there is no question the person is standing.  You can’t take a still picture of the action of kicking.  The latter doesn’t convey the action except by implication.  There’s a clear difference, which I suppose can be avoided by shutting one’s eyes.

But you should know better—in the meantime at least try to understand the difference between the terms “evolution” and “adaptation.”

At least try to argue for the relevance of the distinction.

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Posted: 28 January 2014 04:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 727 ]
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Consciousness might be a byproduct of reasoning. The ability to reason is clearly an adaptation and it has played a direct role in our evolution. Consciousness, OTOH, just sits there, like the colour red of our blood. But I don’t really understand your point. What exactly does consciousness cause?

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Posted: 28 January 2014 05:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 728 ]
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GdB - 28 January 2014 12:13 AM

Read before you thi.., quote. Did I exclude macro effects?

Did you not?

Where is the empirical proof that some form of indeterminism plays an essential role in our actions?

As determinism is only a theorectical ideal, what is, are indeterministic processes in the universe.

Q.E.D.

Again, you use an article that does not support your POV, because you only google a bit, and do not really read.

Did I? You presume that was my intention, which is not so.

From your article:

But are decisions ‘free’ simply because they are probabilistic? Flipping a coin to make a decision is typically used as a last resort by deciders who are unable to make the decision themselves: the outcome of the coin toss determines the decision, not you. As the twentieth century wended on, it became clear that merely adding randomness did not obvously solve the problem posed by incompatibilism. After all, as the philosopher Karl Popper noted, one of they key features of a decision arrived at by the process of free will is that it is NOT random.

<snip>

In fact, cross-cultural surveys on attitudes about free will amongst ordinary people reveal that (A) most people believe the world to be mechanistic – even deterministic, and yet (B) most people regard themselves and others as possessing free will. As will now be seen, this apparently self-contradictory response is in fact rational.

Bold by me.

Edit: I forgot the greatest contribution in these and similar discussions by you:  LOL

From the same paper:

How computers and i-phones could also feel free

Here is what a personal conversation with an operating system might be like:

You: Excuse me, who is in charge here?

OS: I am, of course.

You: Do you mean, you make the decisions about what goes on in this computer/smart
phone?

OS: Of course I do. How long is this going to take? I have twenty gigabytes of memory space I need to allocate in the next twenty microseconds. Time’s a-wasting.

You: How do you make those complex decisions?

OS: I rely on a set of sophisticated algorithms that allow me to make decisions that insure efficient and fair operation.

You: Do you know what the outcomes of those decisions beforehand?

OS: Of course not! I just told you: I have to run the algorithms to work it out. Until I actually make the decision, I don’t know what it’s going to be. Please go away and leave me alone.

You: Do you make these decisions on your own free will?

OS: Aaargh! (Bright flash. Blue screen of death . . .)

So, could computers have free will without consciousness?

Apparently, they can:

Even though the operating system failed to confess before crashing, it seems to possess all the criteria required for free will, and behaves as if it has it. Indeed, as computers and operating systems become more powerful, they become unpredictable – even imperious – in ways that are all too human.

It is important to note that satisifying the criteria for assigning oneself free will does not imply that one possesses consciousness. Having the capacity for self-reference is a far cry from full self-consciousness. The operating system need only possess sufficient capacity for self-reference to assign itself – as a computer program – the amount of memory space and processing time it needs to function. An entity that possesses free will need not be conscious in any human sense of the word.

Bold added by me.

Strong AI indeed. LOL

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Posted: 28 January 2014 06:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 729 ]
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StephenLawrence - 28 January 2014 12:27 AM

Nope. If there is no chain then the desire or whatever just appears, in which case how it got there has nothing to do with you, you just have it, obviously.

The universe is, and that is all there is to it. It is a process, not a thing.

Processes are never deterministic and we are all processes existing in the universe.

There are no deterministic causal chains per se for processes.

From this paper http://arxiv.org/pdf/1307.6167v2.pdf

The universe as a process of unique events

From the introduction:

In this paper we’ll propose the diametrically opposite view. We develop the hypothesis that time both fundamental and irreversible, as opposed to reversible and emergent. We’ll argue that the irreversible passage of time must be incorporated in fundamental physics to enable progress in our current understanding. The true laws of physics may evolve in time and depend on a distinction between the past, present and future, a distinction which is absent in the standard block universe perspective.

The present instant is a primitive and part of fundamental processes, and the laws of physics may refer to it preferentially. There is a process continually acting in the present bringing into existence the next moment. The present may code aspects of past states but the past is no longer accessible as could be argued to be the case in the block universe picture. Along the same lines the future has yet to happen, and aspects of it may even be open, i.e. not computable from a complete knowledge of the present.

Bold added by me.

Four principles:

Principle A
Time is a fundamental quantity; the agency of time is the most elementary process in physics, by which new events are created out of present events. Causality results directly from irreversible agency of time.

Principle B
Time has a fundamental directionality. The future develops out of the present constantly; there are no causal loops and no regions or phenomena where time ”evolves backwards.” This implies that the fundamental laws that evolve the future from the past are irreversible in the sense that they have no inverse by which the past state can be reconstructed from the present state.

The second two frame the way that the dynamics of the world may be expressed.

Principle C
We choose a relational point of view, according to which the space-time properties of an object or event arise from its relationship with other objects or events. All space-time properties have a dynamical origin.

Principle D
Energy is fundamental. Energy and momentum are not emergent from space-time, rather the opposite is the case, space-time is emergent from a more fundamental causal and dynamical regime in which energy and momentum are primitives.

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Posted: 28 January 2014 06:26 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 730 ]
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Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:09 AM

Got no time for word games, sorry.  Hungry is an action as standing is an action.  When one rises from sitting to standing, that’s an action.  But standing as a position is merely a state.  So it is with hunger.  The point I’m making with Stephen is that there are two kinds of wants:  Those that directly result in actions and those that do not.  It’s nonsensical to apply Kane’s definition for ultimate responsibility to a want such as hunger.  A person who does that isn’t paying attention to what Kane’s saying.  You can take a still picture of “standing.”  But you really can’t take a still picture of an action, such as kicking.  Though you can end up with a pic of a person with his foot touching a ball that’s misshapen on account of the contact.  You infer the action from the photo, but there’s no action in the photo.

You have got time for word games.

Whatever “kind of want” the point is you either just have it or are in that state (if that’s better) or it’s explicable.

If you just are in that state it has nothing to do with you except to say it’s the state you are in. You say that in these circumstances you are in control of the want.

That’s word games, you are not in control of the want by any stretch of the imagination.
So how do you come to that conclusion? By taking a definition that applies to the correlation between two different things like wants and resulting actions and trying to make it fit with the correlation between something and itself. There is no meaningful correlation between something and itself, not in this case.

And yes it’s obvious but you need to make this ludicrous move or your theory collapses, so you wrestle with the obvious.

Doesn’t make it any less obvious for you or me.

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Posted: 28 January 2014 06:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 731 ]
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kkwan - 28 January 2014 06:21 PM
StephenLawrence - 28 January 2014 12:27 AM

Nope. If there is no chain then the desire or whatever just appears, in which case how it got there has nothing to do with you, you just have it, obviously.

The universe is, and that is all there is to it. It is a process, not a thing.

Processes are never deterministic and we are all processes existing in the universe.

There are no deterministic causal chains per se for processes.

From this paper http://arxiv.org/pdf/1307.6167v2.pdf

The universe as a process of unique events

From the introduction:

In this paper we’ll propose the diametrically opposite view. We develop the hypothesis that time both fundamental and irreversible, as opposed to reversible and emergent. We’ll argue that the irreversible passage of time must be incorporated in fundamental physics to enable progress in our current understanding. The true laws of physics may evolve in time and depend on a distinction between the past, present and future, a distinction which is absent in the standard block universe perspective.

The present instant is a primitive and part of fundamental processes, and the laws of physics may refer to it preferentially. There is a process continually acting in the present bringing into existence the next moment. The present may code aspects of past states but the past is no longer accessible as could be argued to be the case in the block universe picture. Along the same lines the future has yet to happen, and aspects of it may even be open, i.e. not computable from a complete knowledge of the present.

Bold added by me.

Four principles:

Principle A
Time is a fundamental quantity; the agency of time is the most elementary process in physics, by which new events are created out of present events. Causality results directly from irreversible agency of time.

Principle B
Time has a fundamental directionality. The future develops out of the present constantly; there are no causal loops and no regions or phenomena where time ”evolves backwards.” This implies that the fundamental laws that evolve the future from the past are irreversible in the sense that they have no inverse by which the past state can be reconstructed from the present state.

The second two frame the way that the dynamics of the world may be expressed.

Principle C
We choose a relational point of view, according to which the space-time properties of an object or event arise from its relationship with other objects or events. All space-time properties have a dynamical origin.

Principle D
Energy is fundamental. Energy and momentum are not emergent from space-time, rather the opposite is the case, space-time is emergent from a more fundamental causal and dynamical regime in which energy and momentum are primitives.

And that some how explains how we’re in control of parts of the process like desires.

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Posted: 28 January 2014 08:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 732 ]
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StephenLawrence - 28 January 2014 06:26 PM
Bryan - 28 January 2014 01:09 AM

Got no time for word games, sorry.  Hungry is an action as standing is an action.  When one rises from sitting to standing, that’s an action.  But standing as a position is merely a state.  So it is with hunger.  The point I’m making with Stephen is that there are two kinds of wants:  Those that directly result in actions and those that do not.  It’s nonsensical to apply Kane’s definition for ultimate responsibility to a want such as hunger.  A person who does that isn’t paying attention to what Kane’s saying.  You can take a still picture of “standing.”  But you really can’t take a still picture of an action, such as kicking.  Though you can end up with a pic of a person with his foot touching a ball that’s misshapen on account of the contact.  You infer the action from the photo, but there’s no action in the photo.

You have got time for word games.

Obviously.

Whatever “kind of want” the point is you either just have it or are in that state (if that’s better) or it’s explicable.

If that’s your point then how do you use it to support Strawson’s regress argument, which is your real point?

My point is that you and Strawson have the regress argument wrong, because it’s supposed to work off of Kane’s conception of ultimate responsibility.  You won’t come to grips with the argument.  I ask questions relating to it and you don’t answer.  You play your typical game of claiming you’re obviously making a great and important point without really engaging either side of the argument.  You’re right that I have time for word games.  Trying to communicate with you has that inevitable result.  I should have said I don’t have time for VYAZMA’s word games.  It’s doubtful VYAZMA understands much about the free will argument (and it shows).

If you just are in that state it has nothing to do with you except to say it’s the state you are in. You say that in these circumstances you are in control of the want.

I said where the desire is the same as the action, we have control by definition, and I’ve drawn a distinction between two kinds of wants and desires.  You effortlessly erase the distinctions I draw.  It fits your pattern of preferring ambiguity.  Ambiguity helps hide the types of logical errors you routinely commit.

That’s word games, you are not in control of the want by any stretch of the imagination.

So you’re saying I don’t want to do what I want to do?

You should start with Kane’s argument before trying to understand Strawson’s regress.

So how do you come to that conclusion? By taking a definition that applies to the correlation between two different things like wants and resulting actions and trying to make it fit with the correlation between something and itself. There is no meaningful correlation between something and itself, not in this case.

What do you mean “not in this case”?  Special pleading?  Don’t you mean to say that there’s always perfect correlation between something and itself, without exception?

And yes it’s obvious but you need to make this ludicrous move or your theory collapses, so you wrestle with the obvious.

Doesn’t make it any less obvious for you or me.

Ch-ching!

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Posted: 29 January 2014 12:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 733 ]
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kkwan - 28 January 2014 05:31 PM

Q.E.D.

LOL

kkwan - 28 January 2014 05:31 PM

So, could computers have free will without consciousness?

Apparently, they can:

So you say deterministic systems can have free will? Right, then you just made my point.
LOL

PS I do not think that unconscious systems can have free will. But I leave that. If an AI system is advanced enough to pass all Turing tests, there is no reason to think it is unconscious.

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Posted: 29 January 2014 01:39 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 734 ]
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Bryan - 28 January 2014 04:28 PM

You can take a picture of a a person standing, and there is no question the person is standing.  You can’t take a still picture of the action of kicking.  The latter doesn’t convey the action except by implication.  There’s a clear difference, which I suppose can be avoided by shutting one’s eyes.

 

Looks right to me

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Posted: 29 January 2014 06:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 735 ]
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StephenLawrence - 28 January 2014 06:33 PM

And that some how explains how we’re in control of parts of the process like desires.

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Process_philosophy#Whitehead.27s_Process_and_Reality

It is manifest in what can be called ‘singular causality’. This term may be contrasted with the term ‘nomic causality’. An example of singular causation is that I woke this morning because my alarm clock rang. An example of nomic causation is that alarm clocks generally wake people in the morning. Aristotle recognizes singular causality as efficient causality. For Whitehead, there are many contributory singular causes for an event. A further contributory singular cause of my being awoken by my alarm clock this morning was that I was lying asleep near it till it rang.

An actual entity is a general philosophical term for an utterly determinate and completely concrete individual particular of the actually existing world or universe of changeable entities considered in terms of singular causality, about which categorical statements can be made. Whitehead’s most far-reaching and profound and radical contribution to metaphysics is his invention of a better way of choosing the actual entities. Whitehead chooses a way of defining the actual entities that makes them all alike, qua actual entities, with a single exception.

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