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#1: Yes, read Pullman

Posted on 2006-07-17 15:23:32 by eggplant107

<a href="mailto:nystulc&#64;cs.com" target="_blank">nystulc&#64;cs.com</a> &lt;<a href="mailto:nystulc&#64;cs.com" target="_blank">nystulc&#64;cs.com</a>&gt; Wrote:

&gt; It is fine, as far as it goes, but is not nearly enough.
&gt; You are not describing a philosophy, much less
&gt; a moral philosophy.

I don't hurt people because it would make me very unhappy to do so,
you don't hurt people because you read an order in a book somewhere
not to do so; I don't see how that justifies your claim to be morally
superior to me.

&gt; Hitler could have said the same.

Hitler could have said &quot;it makes me unhappy to see other people in
pain, and if I am the cause of that pain then I am even more
unhappy&quot;?

&gt; I thought you just said &quot;in a loud clear voice&quot; that
&gt; &quot;Asriel's act was morally repugnant.

I did.

&gt; Except that ... uh ... you're not sure whether
&gt; you approve of it or not?

Exactly. Sometimes one has to do repugnant things, I'm not sure if
this is one of those times.

&gt; Yeah. Genghis Khan was an interesting guy.

Indeed he was, but he was also real. Unlike a flesh and blood person a
fictional character has no duty to be moral, his only duty is to be
interesting.

Eggplant

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#2: Re: Yes, read Pullman

Posted on 2006-07-18 04:58:27 by Weird Beard

On Mon, 17 Jul 2006 13:23:32 GMT, &quot;eggplant&quot; &lt;<a href="mailto:eggplant107&#64;hotmail.com" target="_blank">eggplant107&#64;hotmail.com</a>&gt;
wrote the following in alt.fan.harry-potter:

&lt;snip&gt;

Why must you always start a new thread every time you say something?

--
&quot;It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that certain je-ne-sais-quoi.&quot;
Peter Schickele

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#3: Re: Yes, Read Pullman

Posted on 2006-07-23 05:23:28 by nystulc

I would like everybody's attention to the sort of person that defends
Pullman.

eggplant wrote:
&gt; &gt; I thought you just said &quot;in a loud clear voice&quot; that
&gt; &gt; &quot;Asriel's act was morally repugnant.
&gt;
&gt; I did.

Right. Except &quot;morally repugnant&quot; means something different to you
than it does to me. For me, a &quot;morally repugnant&quot; act is an immoral
act -- in other words, an act that you should not do. For you, a
&quot;morally repugnant act&quot; is one that you should consider carefully
whether you should do it.

&gt; &gt; Except that ... uh ... you're not sure whether
&gt; &gt; you approve of it or not?
&gt;
&gt; Exactly. Sometimes one has to do repugnant things, I'm not sure if
&gt; this is one of those times.

Well, I am glad we finally got that straight. In short, you cannot
decide if Asriel was justified in murdering an innocent 12-year old boy
for the sake of a scientific experiment that Asriel believed would
somehow make the world a better place.

I am guessing that the basis of your uncertainty is that you cannot
quite figure out (in accordance with your philosophy of &quot;moral
utilitariansim&quot;) whether Asriel was right in believing his
ritual-murder-experiment would ultimately make the world a better
place. But that's the problem with moral utilitarians -- you can never
know; never decide; the calculations are too difficult. That is why
moral utilitarians have no moral backbone whatsoever.

This conversation is making me nauseated. If you cannot decide whether
it is okay to murder children for scientific experiments, then you have
truly lost your humanity.

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#4: Re: Yes, read Pullman

Posted on 2006-07-23 20:10:13 by nystulc

eggplant wrote:
&gt; <a href="mailto:nystulc&#64;cs.com" target="_blank">nystulc&#64;cs.com</a> &lt;<a href="mailto:nystulc&#64;cs.com" target="_blank">nystulc&#64;cs.com</a>&gt; Wrote:
&gt;
&gt; &gt; It is fine, as far as it goes, but is not nearly enough.
&gt; &gt; You are not describing a philosophy, much less
&gt; &gt; a moral philosophy.
&gt;
&gt; I don't hurt people because it would make me very unhappy to do so,
&gt; you don't hurt people because you read an order in a book somewhere
&gt; not to do so; I don't see how that justifies your claim to be morally
&gt; superior to me.

If you were to loudly boast that you were completely penniless, and
furthermore in $100,000 in debt, would that justify my claim to be
financially superior to you? You have loudly boasted that you do not
consider yourself bound by any moral rules whatsoever (and continue to
express your contempt for such &quot;orders&quot; in the above passage). If I
point out that this makes you morally bankrupt, I am merely calling a
spade a spade.

&gt; &gt; Hitler could have said the same.
&gt;
&gt; Hitler could have said &quot;it makes me unhappy to see other people in
&gt; pain, and if I am the cause of that pain then I am even more
&gt; unhappy&quot;?

Why should that surprise you? Nobody, as far as I know, has ever
claimed that Hitler was a happy man, or that the choices he made
brought him happiness. He preferred to let others do his dirty work,
and in the end, he killed himself. I am sure, of course, that his
unhappiness never translated into actual moral regret, or any sense
that he considered himself bound by real moral restrictions. But you
yourself have adequately pointed out that the two ideas need hardly go
hand in hand.

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