a thread for mundane ironists

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Jun 29, 2012 7:43 pm

Bianco Luno

To the extent our sentiments are educable they cease to be ours.


Sentiments, surely. Though not other things. Dasein is either relevant or it is not.

But untrained, unfettered, "in the moment", they are not then ours either.
They belong properly to that force acting through us to which we sometimes even take pride in abdicating responsibility.
The mother of all mothers.


But it might we argued that "in the moment" they come closer to being ours. And that mothers can always abort them later. And that abdicating or not abdicating responsibility is neither here nor there.

Yet this rancor at least is alive beside the withering thickness of the air at a wedding, a celebration, a party, a line of people waiting to vote, any public gathering that isn’t to hang someone.

True, but the unbearable lightness of being will always be snuffed out one way or the other. If only in embracing it. Thickly even.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sat Jun 30, 2012 7:03 pm

Bianco Luno

I drove my electric car in a politically correct neighborhood parade for children.
The theme was ecological.
The children dressed like recycling bins, bottles and cans.
I was invited because my car was cute and supposed to be emblematic of some higher social responsibility.
The hope was to tattoo the little consciousnesses with a set of ideals to last the ages.
I had begun to worry when on my way home from the fifteen minute parade one kid threw a rock at my car, relieving my concern.


One kid apparently becomes a new theme. You have yours, they have theirs. And the beat goes on.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby Moreno » Sat Jun 30, 2012 10:56 pm

iambiguous wrote:My position is this: I think "I" have some measure of understanding and control [as dasein] in chossing among alternative explanations. But I don't have a convincing argument [even to myself] to counter volchok's speculation about mind being matter and matter, in being the same "stuff", being rooted in the laws of nature.
As far as I can tell, there is no obligation to counter speculation. Speculation is generally held to bear the onus of showing it is not speculation - though this is an appeal to popularity on my part, the popularity in question is present also amongst the determinist crowd, he writes with a dash of irony.

My argument is that mind is a kind of matter that has never existed.
Matter is not a word with any limited content. It just means verified as real. And we are likely not finished with verifying things are real and stuffing them in that category regardless of their qualities.

And that, among its seeming properties, is this intuitive sense that "I" am able to choose among alternative explanations. And, finally, that science is in its infancy in understanding human consciousness.
Yes.

What is ironic then for me are those determinists huffing and puffing to blow my house down when, like big bad wolf and the three little pigs, we are all up on the same stage, our strings being pulled by nature.
yes, that irony seems to be one that is missed.

In another thread one determinist wrote how philosophy is about truth, not things that make us feel warm and fuzzy. As if there could be no emotional motivations for hating ideas of free will, or being drawn to determinism, or of having no self (let alone a soul) etc. The implicit idea is that the mentally brave can face the truth and have no tempermental reasons for their beliefs. (and hidden in there is something so close to a claim that they are really FREE while those they disagree with are determined by their emotions that I cannot see the difference. In fact despite the fact that I can laugh at the irony of this, I have to avoid this poster, mostly, because the size of the blind spot and the rage behind his posts is so unpleasant.)

Well, Calvinism has always struck me as particularly absurd theatre. What we choose to do on earth is merely an embodiment of God. I think: Why do good when the fate of my soul has already long ago been decided. But then I do good or bad only in accourdance with an omniscient and omnipotent point of view anyway.

Huh?

Obviously: I'm missing something here.
It seems like what you are missing here is that people don't necessarily 1) say what they really mean 2) connect to their emotions 3) make sense 4) stay consistent 5) avoid talking themselves into all sorts of stuff for reasons they don't want to notice.

I understand that I have effects. I understand that I choose what I do in order to generate these effects. But if I could not not have chosen these things how is that really different from the effects falling dominoes have on each other?


Still, determinist are [to me] no less dasein. They choose or don't choose cruelty over kindness because [as with non-determinists] the life they lived [and the manner in which they have come to understand it] predisposed them to one sort of thinking/feeling/doing rather than another. But, again, given contingency chance and change, their point of view can evolve. But: is our perception of "contingency, chance and change" itself rooted firmly in the laws of matter?
We're in a transitional phase - probably always have been - but one dealing with issues like this one. Science is moving to the center in a lot of lives. We are in a period of reaction against the monotheisms. The pagans and indigenous people were long ago dismissed by the combined might of the technocrats and the monotheisms. Now the monotheisms are being rejected in the West by a larger %. They see false dilemmas everywhere, and must close any door they see as leading to irrationalism or supernaturalism or loss of a certain kind of mental control. I have sympathy for both their anger and their generally denied fear. The monotheisms were pretty damaging. so they respond in hard cold ways to anything that reminds them of the monotheisms - and sometimes other ways of thinking, which can even mean, thinking like a woman, or what they think this is like.

They are like a cold, harsh, very angry light, that wants to be certain and express as certain, and do not realize how much they resemble what they hate.

Sadly, it is like a chip of that light has been long lodged in my soul. So I sometimes have 'discussions' with them so that I can understand what that chip is doing to me.
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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 01, 2012 11:20 pm

Moreno wrote:
iambiguous wrote:My position is this: I think "I" have some measure of understanding and control [as dasein] in choosing among alternative explanations. But I don't have a convincing argument [even to myself] to counter volchok's speculation about mind being matter and matter, in being the same "stuff", being rooted in the laws of nature.

As far as I can tell, there is no obligation to counter speculation. Speculation is generally held to bear the onus of showing it is not speculation - though this is an appeal to popularity on my part, the popularity in question is present also amongst the determinist crowd, he writes with a dash of irony.


The determinists seem convincing by way of noting how all the scientific evidence points to mind as matter interacting with other minds as matter in accordance with the laws of physics. In other words, the "all the same stuff" premise.

All I can do then is note [as I did with volchok] this from wiki:

The...studies described below have only just begun to shed light on the role that consciousness plays in actions and it is too early to draw very strong conclusions about certain kinds of "free will". It is worth noting that such experiments - so far - have dealt only with free will decisions made in short time frames (seconds) and may not have direct bearing on free will decisions made ("thoughtfully") by the subject over the course of many seconds, minutes, hours or longer. Scientists have also only so far studied extremely simple behaviors (e.g. moving a finger).

Again, we all have this deep-seated intuitive sense that somehow "I" have something to do autononously with the choices "I" make. But we don't know how to fully explain that. I agree that determinism seems to be a reasonable assumption. I just point out the implications of that.

My argument is that mind is a kind of matter that has never existed.


Moreno wrote:Matter is not a word with any limited content. It just means verified as real. And we are likely not finished with verifying things are real and stuffing them in that category regardless of their qualities.


The more you watch science documentaries on matter qua energy in space qua time, the more you come to realize just how profoundly problematic "existence" really is. For example, it is estimated that, given the amount of "dark matter" in the universe, only a small fraction of all matter is actually able to be seen at all.

But any number of determinists keep huffing and puffing as though none of this were true at all. The science seems to be on their side but we have barely begun to understand what that means for "free will".

Moreno wrote:In another thread one determinist wrote how philosophy is about truth, not things that make us feel warm and fuzzy. As if there could be no emotional motivations for hating ideas of free will, or being drawn to determinism, or of having no self (let alone a soul) etc. The implicit idea is that the mentally brave can face the truth and have no tempermental reasons for their beliefs. (and hidden in there is something so close to a claim that they are really FREE while those they disagree with are determined by their emotions that I cannot see the difference. In fact despite the fact that I can laugh at the irony of this, I have to avoid this poster, mostly, because the size of the blind spot and the rage behind his posts is so unpleasant.)


I've been over and over this with folks like volchok. There is considerable comfort to be had in reducing everything we think, feel and do down to necessities inherent in nature. Especially when we "fuck up". No one can really be blamed for anything.

But there is also considerable bewilderment as well.

But either reaction seems equally necessary in a determined world.

...determinists are [to me] no less dasein. They choose or don't choose cruelty over kindness because [as with non-determinists] the life they lived [and the manner in which they have come to understand it] predisposed them to one sort of thinking/feeling/doing rather than another. But, again, given contingency chance and change, their point of view can evolve. But: is our perception of "contingency, chance and change" itself rooted firmly in the laws of matter?


Moreno wrote:They are like a cold, harsh, very angry light, that wants to be certain and express as certain, and do not realize how much they resemble what they hate.


I think this is true of most who embrace scientism. Science becomes the new God in that everything eventually gets reduced down to it. But if everything is subsumed in science then that includes everyone. And if that is true then nothing we think or feel or do is explicable by way of being able to choose freely what are the correct rather than the incorrect conclusions. It's all interchangable when it comes to huffing and puffing. If volchok is right it is as it must be. If I am wrong it is as it must be. How can I not not be wrong if my freedom is illusory---if I am just one more component of nature acting in accordance with what must unfold?

But what does that really say about the world we live in? That's the part some determinists just shrug off.

Fortunately, for them, they have no choice. Not even when choosing the way they do.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby Moreno » Sun Jul 01, 2012 11:27 pm

iambiguous wrote:The determinists seem convincing by way of noting how all the scientific evidence points to mind as matter interacting with other minds as matter in accordance with the laws of physics. In other words, the "all the same stuff" premise.
There's a lot of marginilized stuff that indicates this is not all that is going on, at the least.

All I can do then is note [as I did with volchok] this from wiki:

The...studies described below have only just begun to shed light on the role that consciousness plays in actions and it is too early to draw very strong conclusions about certain kinds of "free will". It is worth noting that such experiments - so far - have dealt only with free will decisions made in short time frames (seconds) and may not have direct bearing on free will decisions made ("thoughtfully") by the subject over the course of many seconds, minutes, hours or longer. Scientists have also only so far studied extremely simple behaviors (e.g. moving a finger).
I cannot imagine a more likely situation for hindsight bias than where one asserts that everything is caused by what came before it.

Again, we all have this deep-seated intuitive sense that somehow "I" have something to do autononously with the choices "I" make. But we don't know how to fully explain that. I agree that determinism seems to be a reasonable assumption. I just point out the implications of that.
And so have I. Note the rage this elicits. Either that what is being said is obvious or wrong because though they are utterly determined they somehow also know why they think the things they do.

The more you watch science documentaries on matter qua energy in space qua time, the more you come to realize just how profoundly problematic "existence" really is. For example, it is estimated that, given the amount of "dark matter" in the universe, only a small fraction of all matter is actually able to be seen at all.

But any number of determinists keep huffing and puffing as though none of this were true at all. The science seems to be on their side but we have barely begun to understand what that means for "free will".
I can't really get too upset at such a refined level of abstraction, given the problems I have to deal with.
I've been over and over this with folks like volchok. There is considerable comfort to be had in reducing everything we think, feel and do down to necessities inherent in nature. Especially when we "fuck up". No one can really be blamed for anything.
That's on potential emotional reason for liking determinism. another would be, if not rigid causation, then what, and the fear of that unknown.

I think this is true of most who embrace scientism. Science becomes the new God in that everything eventually gets reduced down to it. But if everything is subsumed in science then that includes everyone. And if that is true then nothing we think or feel or do is explicable by way of being able to choose freely what are the correct rather than the incorrect conclusions. It's all interchangable when it comes to huffing and puffing. If volchok is right it is as it must be. If I am wrong it is as it must be. How can I not not be wrong if my freedom is illusory---if I am just one more component of nature acting in accordance with what must unfold?
Or if one truly believes in determinism, where does the urge to convince others it is the case come from? Clean up your own goddam house before going door to door like a Jehovah's witness. Glass houses and all that.
Fortunately, for them, they have no choice. Not even when choosing what they do.
And then if they do not believe they even exist.......

Not that I hear much public policy suggestion making from this stance. I mean, debts, for example.....
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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jul 02, 2012 7:41 pm

Bianco Luno:

"Mommie bought her textbooks here."
She, the very mommie in question, says to her boy in the bookstore.
Not ‘I’ but ‘mommie’, as though this eminence could not address directly.
Mommie this and mommie that until one day the boy thinks to rape a mommie-type whom he never learned to apprehend as a ‘you’, a subject with a consciousness to penetrate: the body of this self-distancing object having to suffice.


Sounds like a personal problem. But it just goes to show how deeply problematic these threads can go.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jul 02, 2012 8:44 pm

Moreno wrote:
iambiguous wrote:The determinists seem convincing by way of noting how all the scientific evidence points to mind as matter interacting with other minds as matter in accordance with the laws of physics. In other words, the "all the same stuff" premise.

There's a lot of marginilized stuff that indicates this is not all that is going on, at the least.


There is enough stuff here for both sides to claim victory. What perturbs some folks though is the refusal on my part to pick one side over the other. As though this were the equivalent of solving a simple arithmetic problem.

Moreno wrote: I cannot imagine a more likely situation for hindsight bias than where one asserts that everything is caused by what came before it.


But are the ocean tides ebbing and flowing interchangable with the ebb and flow of folks from Hitler's death camps...or from Pol Pot's killing fields? Is this really all just the same stuff obeying the same laws of nature?

It would seem to be different...but not in any way that would really matter come judgment day.

Again, we all have this deep-seated intuitive sense that somehow "I" have something to do autononously with the choices "I" make. But we don't know how to fully explain that. I agree that determinism seems to be a reasonable assumption. I just point out the implications of that.


Moreno wrote: And so have I. Note the rage this elicits. Either that what is being said is obvious or wrong because though they are utterly determined they somehow also know why they think the things they do.


Yes, they can become quite incensed when you refuse to embrace what you had absolutely no real choice but to reject.

And I don't get how they don't get that part.

Or, as you note, they come into venues like this one with the "urge to convince others" of their own point of view---as though they felt it was important to choose to do this. Like they chose this particular crusade when there are so many other things they could have chosen to do instead.

Isn't the irony here obvious?

Or, again, is it something that I am missing?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby Moreno » Mon Jul 02, 2012 11:56 pm

iambiguous wrote:There is enough stuff here for both sides to claim victory. What perturbs some folks though is the refusal on my part to pick one side over the other. As though this were the equivalent of solving a simple arithmetic problem.
Well, from my little perspective that's silly. From any of a number of perspectives. Our limited knowledge, the lack of consensus, the various reasons one might not want to commit (especially in a not clear situation) and so on.

But are the ocean tides ebbing and flowing interchangable with the ebb and flow of folks from Hitler's death camps...or from Pol Pot's killing fields? Is this really all just the same stuff obeying the same laws of nature?

It would seem to be different...but not in any way that would really matter come judgment day.
Just to press on all assumptions. We do not know where choice begins in the world. Up into the 60s it was controversial in science to consider animals experiencers or as having emotions, cognition, intentions, etc. Why should we assume that even more of nature is likewise being discriminated against and in fact makes choices, but in ways and perhaps over time periods longer or different than ours. So even if it is all the same, that doesn't rule out free will.

And note: we do know that there is a huge bias against nature (outside humans) in the West. So huge that any human associated with nature - blacks, women - was not considered free, sentient, etc. There is a vast homocentric bias in the West and Western science is still extricating itself from the biases of Judao-christianity and Greek philosophy.

Yes, they can become quite incensed when you refuse to embrace what you had absolutely no real choice but to reject.
Well put. that irony is not missed and does not mitigate over time the rage.

And I don't get how they don't get that part.
Perhaps only they are determined. :lol:

Or, as you note, they come into venues like this one with the "urge to convince others" of their own point of view---as though they felt it was important to choose to do this. Like they chose this particular crusade when there are so many other things they could have chosen to do instead.
And one was so angry that anyone took other ideas seriously it led to a rant condemning the forum. There are now a couple of guys in a mad tizzy that anyone could express ideas not supported by current science IN A PHILOSOPHY DISCUSSION FORUM.

I think they took a wrong turn somewhere.
Isn't the irony here obvious?

Or, again, is it something that I am missing?
I seem to be missing it also.

I can get enraged at a domino - or at least a household appliance, even a hammer that hit my finger. I can. I do. I even let myself indulge in this anger since it hurts no one and feels better if I just let it flow through me. But after, I realize how silly this anger was. I am even, on rare occasion, mature enough to mention this humorous trait of mine to others. To admit it, that is.

I am still waiting for this domino to fall in their logical minds.
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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Tue Jul 03, 2012 9:21 pm

Moreno wrote:
But are the ocean tides ebbing and flowing interchangable with the ebb and flow of folks from Hitler's death camps...or from Pol Pot's killing fields? Is this really all just the same stuff obeying the same laws of nature?

It would seem to be different...but not in any way that would really matter come judgment day.


Just to press on all assumptions. We do not know where choice begins in the world. Up into the 60s it was controversial in science to consider animals experiencers or as having emotions, cognition, intentions, etc. Why should we assume that even more of nature is likewise being discriminated against and in fact makes choices, but in ways and perhaps over time periods longer or different than ours. So even if it is all the same, that doesn't rule out free will.


Still, I don't know how to eliminate the arguments of those who do not share my own. On the other hand, sometimes I don't share my own either.

For example, I think of a large number in my head: seven hundred and sixteen trillion, nine and twelve billion, four hundred and six thousand, five hundred and one.

I think: why that one? It all seemed to pop into my head spontaneously, mechanically. And here I come closest to imagining everything else might too.

Or, as you note, they come into venues like this one with the "urge to convince others" of their own point of view---as though they felt it was important to choose to do this. Like they chose this particular crusade when there are so many other things they could have chosen to do instead.


Moreno wrote:And one was so angry that anyone took other ideas seriously it led to a rant condemning the forum. There are now a couple of guys in a mad tizzy that anyone could express ideas not supported by current science IN A PHILOSOPHY DISCUSSION FORUM.


I can only think it is necessity they are after. That feeling of being certain. Also, it is comforting to imagine we are released from all responsibility for our lives. Things happen because they must happen. We are all only pawns in nature's "game".

This is especially consoling when there is a big gap between the way our life is and the way we want it to be instead.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Tue Jul 03, 2012 10:54 pm

Bianco Luno

But since blame can hardly attach to a mommie, no accusation is dared here.
For all the difference it makes, we’ll say,
she merely sets the stage for the dissolution of the race, in which the principals—the catalysts of responsibility—ordinarily, more constitutionally than historically, are men.
Why don’t mommies teach their baby boys what it is they want when they are in the singular position to do so?
It cannot be that they are too young to understand, for when they reach that age, if ever, they will be proof against any psychic incursion from her side.
It is then or never.
And it is not a question of understanding in any event: she is in the potent position of laying the foundation of what he will later come to call ‘understanding’.
Almost invariably, her mothery egoism prevails.
This, her boy, will be no other woman’s ever.
It would require some loss of her power over him now so that other women may one day find him more accessible.
Unenfranchised elsewhere, for her, the boy becomes the tool of her vengeance.
She wreaks violence this way, telegraphically.
So it is not true that, as Marguerite Duras says, most men are homosexual under the veneer of socialization.
Certainly, they act as though they were; they show too little interest in the subjectivity of women.
But in fact, and less dramatically, they are generally bisexual in some measure.
(The pure extremes of homosexuality and heterosexuality are appropriately rare.
Their bisexuality is patent, though compartmentalized; as appreciative of the female body as they are charmed by its emotional effusions, but observe that, at the same time, they prefer the male mind—and they are, as trained, disconcerted to find them ever in one being, and would just as soon not.


Mommies and men. Nature and nurture. All tangled up in black and blue. All tangled up in Freud and Jung and Reich and R.D. Laing.

And, maybe, B.F. Skinner?

Then Kinsey, Masters and Johnson and...Dr. Ruth?

Or should we skip all that and read the stuff that Otto Weininger wrote?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby Moreno » Wed Jul 04, 2012 12:13 am

iambiguous wrote:Still, I don't know how to eliminate the arguments of those who do not share my own. On the other hand, sometimes I don't share my own either.
many things cannot be determined rationally. We can look at an argument, see coherence, see logic, but not be sure what filters, semantic confusions, false dilemmas and other such mythologization may be in what seem like tough minded, science based reasoning. So these things peck at us. It is unpleasant, though i can't say I get that bothered by the idea of determinism so much anymore. I mean, if I was in the process of being convinced it was the case, I would find that unpleasant, but that isn't happening.

I had a long period where the non-existence of the self - especially over time - really, really bothered me. And then it didn't so much. Not because I can defeat a materialist argument there, I just find it has less hooks for me.

Perhaps something else is really going on that allows us to get hooked and tortured by such arguments. I think this is the case for me. It was a kind of impossible worry. Nothing I could do about it, while there were many pressing down to earth issues I might possibly have been able to deal with and I really did not want to look at those for fear I couldn't.

I am not saying this is the case with you, just that I think it is possible with humans to fixate on an issue they have no control over and this becomes a focal point, when, in fact other more concrete things are banging on the door and we don't want to focus on them.

I mean, if determinism turns out to be the case, YOU have not failed. You have not shamed yourself. A fact would now be clearly a fact as it was all along. But there are many issues that at the very least it feels like it would be shameful, guilt producing, ridiculous if we could not change, fix or deal with them, so we focus on something that is in this way, and perhap this way alone, safe. It's bad enough being damned, but being damned by what seems like one's own hand, that is really aweful.

You could see if, at the edges of your consciousness, there are things that you are afraid to look at and begin taking steps to deal with, likely things other people, at least some of them, seem to have an easy(er) time with.

I can only think it is necessity they are after. That feeling of being certain. Also, it is comforting to imagine we are released from all responsibility for our lives. Things happen because they must happen. We are all only pawns in nature's "game".
I think a big factor is team identification. Once you decide you are the enemy of ____________, then you take on the team's philosophy on issues, here disidentifying with the irrational ones who have been terrible by ____________ and ______________. This does not mean other logical and rational factors were not involved in team choice and position belief, but I think this team identification is huge. I notice that irrationality produced by members of one's own team are generally not attacked. FJ's burden of proof thread OP a nice exception. This holds for all teams, though irrational may not be the enemy code word for other teams.

This is especially consoling when there is a big gap between the way our life is and the way we want it to be instead.
Often I have encountered 'if the natural laws break down then there is no point in science' and other similar statements that it seems to me indicate underlying fears of having to depend on intuition, openly.
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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Wed Jul 04, 2012 4:58 pm

Moreno wrote: ....i can't say I get that bothered by the idea of determinism so much anymore. I mean, if I was in the process of being convinced it was the case, I would find that unpleasant, but that isn't happening.


I go back to William Barrett's "conflicting goods" argument here, reconfiguring it from ethics to autonomy. There are reasons to believe in determinism and there are reasons not to believe in it.

And sometimes it is consoling imagining everything is as it must be and sometimes it is consoling imagining it more or less as dasein is predisposed. Either way I am at a considerable distance from the radical egoism embedded in, say, libertarianism.

Moreno wrote:Perhaps something else is really going on that allows us to get hooked and tortured by such arguments. I think this is the case for me. It was a kind of impossible worry. Nothing I could do about it, while there were many pressing down to earth issues I might possibly have been able to deal with and I really did not want to look at those for fear I couldn't.


When we start to think [really think] about human existence we come to the inevitable paradoxes and antinomies strewn throughout philosophical discourse. We reach points beyond which reason and logic and human knowledge cannot seem to penetrate.

But those who thrive [psychologically] on certainty find ways to convince themselves that what they think is so necessarily. I abandoned that when I began to stumble on folks like Bianco Luno.

Moreno wrote:I mean, if determinism turns out to be the case, YOU have not failed. You have not shamed yourself. A fact would now be clearly a fact as it was all along. But there are many issues that at the very least it feels like it would be shameful, guilt producing, ridiculous if we could not change, fix or deal with them, so we focus on something that is in this way, and perhap this way alone, safe. It's bad enough being damned, but being damned by what seems like one's own hand, that is really aweful.


I root these things in dasein. And, of course, there are folks as apalled by this as others are by determinism.

Dasein is an existential contraption situated out in a particular world awash in contingency, chance and change. "One's own hand"? What does that really mean if who you think you are is a prefabricated point of view that you endlessly refabricate at the juncture of "inside my particular head" and "out in my particular world"?

That is why I am more intrigued by this instead: what is true for all of us? what transcends dasein?

Math, science, logic...certainly. But what of identity and value judgments? How certain can we ever be of them?

Here we can only agree with or not agree with the arguments of others. But we [like them] do not have the capacity to demonstrate our arguments wholly. Or so it seems to me.

Moreno wrote:You could see if, at the edges of your consciousness, there are things that you are afraid to look at and begin taking steps to deal with, likely things other people, at least some of them, seem to have an easy(er) time with.


This may well be the sort of motivation lurking behind those who heap scorn on folks who still manage to believe in God. There is a part of them that wishes they could too.

That [in part] is why I come into places like this: looking for arguments that will challenge my own. In other words, trust me: it is far, far from easy thinking and feeling like I do.

Moreno wrote:I think a big factor is team identification. Once you decide you are the enemy of ____________, then you take on the team's philosophy on issues, here disidentifying with the irrational ones who have been terrible by ____________ and ______________. This does not mean other logical and rational factors were not involved in team choice and position belief, but I think this team identification is huge.


Here is how I posited something similar on an earlier post:

This, in my view, is how the psychology of truth telling unfolds.

1. For whatever reason initially you take an interest in philosophy

2. As time goes by you find yourself increasingly pulled into exploring the Big Questions systemically, as a discipline

3. Over time you gravitate towards particular philosophers and schools thought

4. After a while you are convinced these thinkers and perspectives express the Most Rational Philosophy of all

5. Eventually, you begin to bump into others who feel the same way; you may even begin to actually seek out folks similarly inclined to view the world in a particular way

6. Then you are sharing this philosophy with family, friends, colleagues, associates and Internet denizens; it becomes more and more a part of your life

7. As more time passes, the line between "my philosophy" and "my life" starts to become increasingly more blurred

8. As yet more time passes you start to feel increasingly compelled not only to share your Philosophy Of Life with others but, in turn, to vigorously defend it against any and all detractors

9. For some, it reaches the point where they are no longer able to realistically construe an argument that disputes their own as merely a difference of opinion; they see it instead as, for all intents and pirposes, an attack on their intellectual integrity....on their very Self

10. Finally a stage is reached [again, for some] where the original philosophical quest for truth, for wisdom has become so profoundly integrated into their self-identity [professionally, socially, psychologically] defending it has less and less to do with philosophy at all.


Or something like that.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Wed Jul 04, 2012 11:20 pm

Bianco Luno

Remember to always keep the veil of manly conceit thin enough to keep visible the awed boy.
This will make you attractive but fatal to their purposes.
You shall not beget a child.


The child is the father to the man. Unless, of course, the child is the mother instead. But who begot the children that, more and more, are less and less inclined to emulate either one?

Beneath the veil, a mask. Beneath the mask, a veil.
And, above all else, we are what we consume in this modern world.

The irresponsibility of the truth will make a boy out of a man.

And how irresponsible is it for the man to suggest that?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Jul 05, 2012 6:25 pm

Bianco Luno

I played at being homosexual when I was six or so with a visiting cousin (like nearly everyone).
We were doubled up in the same bed by unthinking parents (are not all parents thoughtless?).
What a sadness descends upon me now.
I am made uneasy in the company of gay men, straight ones as well, and women too, now as an elderly boy.
The whole business of human contact has left and gone to the moon.
You agree with me on the facts but think this was somehow avoidable, or at least desirably so.


All of the existential threads that come together to make us who we think we are.

Who do you think you are? And how much of it is as a result of unthinking parents? Or, perhaps, even worse, of thinking ones?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Jul 06, 2012 10:07 pm

Bianco Luno

It must be metaphysically restful for a woman to be a mother.
Nothing a man could possibly engage in approaches that degree of natural honor, so garnering the world’s stamp of approval.
Platitudes, to get back to them, thoroughly explain everything.


In this modern world Men seem to embrace the NFL in much the same manner. And nothing they do seems more natural or more honorable. Aside perhaps from going to war.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sat Jul 07, 2012 7:05 pm

Bianco Luno

Radio commentary: "Society only becomes aware of a fraction of the number of rapes of women by men."
And each woman will only become aware of a fraction of the number of times she is raped in the course of her life.


There will always be a gap between imagination and reality here. Bigger in some, smaller in others.

Bob Dylan:

And if my thought-dreams could be seen
They’d probably put my head in a guillotine
But it’s alright, Ma, it’s life, and life only


Right, sure.

Bianco Luno

I’m fond of oppressed groups, particularly the kind that have been oppressed almost
out of existence—or who are, still better, completely extinct.
Beautifully dead and gone.
I can champion their cause with the skimpiest reservation.
Among oppressed groups, then, women are special and problematic.
How can we imagine their oppressors outliving them?


Try to imagine the dismay [or the outrage] of those not able to admit this can only be a point of view.
And what if, instead, it were entirely consistent with the world we lived in?
The science of gender? The science of oppresssion? The science of government begetting a new world order?
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He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby Moreno » Sat Jul 07, 2012 11:03 pm

iambiguous wrote:Bianco Luno

Radio commentary: "Society only becomes aware of a fraction of the number of rapes of women by men."
And each woman will only become aware of a fraction of the number of times she is raped in the course of her life.
I didn't understand the second sentence.

There will always be a gap between imagination and reality here. Bigger in some, smaller in others.
I was in my early 20s and talking with a woman friend. She lives in a nearby city, a small city. A town. On her way to the store, she told me, men regularly walked up to her and asked for blow jobs or the like. Not that it would justify their behavior, but she didn't dress provocatively. She dressed down, in general. She said this and I had to ask her to repeat it. Of course I knew about such things and I knew about rape statistics and quite a lot about sexual abuse. But this banal sexual attacking attention hadn't really gone past a vague mental abstraction. I realized that she and I lived in different worlds.

Once a man walked up to me and offered me a blow job. Wasn't particularly pleasant, but it was once and it's also not quite the same as the request.

Anyway when she told me this I flashed back to when I stayed in a rooming house in another big city. I made a call on the payphone in the hall and right after I hung up the phone rang. Some guy said he was gonna ___________________. I can't even remember, but sexual and violent. Suddenly I felt very vulnerable and skittered back to my room and locked the door. But this was a radical exception. No one, not even the blow job offerer, gave off an aggressive, hateful sexual vibe on approach. That's it. One instance. Whereas for my friend, this was a regular part of her life, something she worked with to avoid, had strategies to defend against and prevent.

I suppose some women have come toward me with what could be taken as a kind of hateful sexuality. But I am was not physically intimidated by any of them. No potential sticks and stones, just words.

Anyway: Her phenomenological Town X was not my phenomenological Town X.

And this isn't of course just around negative stuff. Just that people as a rule react to her very differently then they do to me.
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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Jul 08, 2012 8:58 pm

Moreno wrote:
iambiguous wrote:Bianco Luno

Radio commentary: "Society only becomes aware of a fraction of the number of rapes of women by men."
And each woman will only become aware of a fraction of the number of times she is raped in the course of her life.
I didn't understand the second sentence.


Luno is rather elliptical in conveying points of view. As near as I can decipher why revolves around the manner in which Victor Munoz invokes an alter ego to suggest there is no direct way in which to encompass these things.

If you'd like to experience the inventor himself he conducts discussions of philosophy at the Seattle Analytic Philosophy Club web site. [Sorry I don't know how to do the linkage bit]. Go to "Discussions" at the top and click on "message board".

Here he is "himself"---Victor Munoz. In fact, check out his, "a peculiar kind of moral relativism" thread. You can even join the club and participate. I did but I don't. And I don't because these folks are top notch philosophers and I am always in way over my head "up there".

Anyway, I think the second sentence is meant to convey the fact that many men no doubt fantacize about raping particular women they come into contact with. The women are raped...but only in their heads.

Sex is so hard wired into the human brain -- males, it seems, in particular -- that countless lives have been upended [even completely wrecked] as a result of one's inability to rein it in. We know the famous folks: Spitzer, Edwards, Foley, Clinton etc. But millions of next door neighbor types also find their own lives becoming hopelessly entangled in these powerful "urges".

What is the gap then between what some only think about in their heads and what others actually do instead? I wouldn't even begin to try to "encompass it directly".

Besides, in here our own alter egos are always..."moderated". [-X
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jul 09, 2012 6:47 pm

Bianco Luno:

Socialization: somewhere to go or something to do.


Especially around the time of our birth. Though considerably less so around the time of our death.

Compassion is silly.
Witness Francis Ponge: a furnishing, a morsel of landscape, a cleanser.
It will attach itself to anything, and where it is resisted, it becomes your Kantian duty to force the issue.
Where it is suckered, there I may want to leave it alone, or it will snarl something murderous at my aspersions.


Let's leave Kant out of this. After all, eventually, most Kantians do.
Some will then come to call it "compassion fatigue". And a few will even deserve to.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Tue Jul 10, 2012 5:16 pm

Bianco Luno

"...ours was the love of those who take pleasure in loving..." Lispector.
This, if you want to know, is what is so fatal in mothering.


In any event, mothering and capitalism can, in these modern times, make for some truly strange bedfellows. Capitalism [it can be argued] brings out the narcisscist in us. And God help the children who get in the way of that.

Also, as the song says, Love Kills.

My earliest ambition was to be a corner grocery clerk.
Returning the can of paprika my mother had sent me to get, I observed the clerk reading comics.
I showed him the bugs crawling in the can
and he said it was okay to exchange it.
He seemed to have a nice job, and, as far as I could see, had an important role to play.


Ah, to be young again!
Before the world we live in brings this out in you.
Take, for example, "Bartleby the Scrivener".
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Tue Jul 10, 2012 10:36 pm

FYI...

My daughter was over for lunch today and she taught me how to link stuff from web sites that are not youtube.

So, for anyone interested to exploring the mind behind Bianco Luno [in the here and now] you can encounter it at:

http://www.meetup.com/Seattle-Analytic-Philosophy-CLUB/

Bianco Luno here is Victor Munoz there. He just created a thread that revolves around free will. But he has also created threads relating to identity and morality. Click on "discussions" at the top and then scroll down to "message board".

There he is considerably less elliptical. But not being a real philosopher myself I still find him hard to follow. You know, "up there".
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Jul 12, 2012 1:33 am

Bianco Luno:

Being a housewife and mother also appealed to me.
My mother, compulsively too industrious, was not the inspiration here.
Nevertheless, for me, being around the house all day could be quite fun.
I wanted to be left alone.
I wanted to pretend to have the least impact on the world.
And more, as a mother I could have taken a righteous pleasure in something.


One can imagine any number of feminists lining up to put this in perspective. But is it really about politics at all? In any event, as I philosopher, his impact on the world can hardly be less substantial. In this day and age especially.

"I don’t know what you’re talking about."
You lie, or you reveal some truth.
Tell me, which is worse?


Well, it all depends on how much is really at stake when you need an answer.

The whole planet has been populated by rapists.

But enough about Wall Street and Washington...
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Jul 12, 2012 5:40 pm

Bianco Luno

To William James:
I am not allowed to work out my bleak logic without suggesting some way to avert what it describes.
I don’t profess to be an example for you, but I offer this counsel: without turning your face away stop seeing it as bleak.


Most folks deal with bleak logic by insisting it is not really logical at all. And the way they generally avert it is make the messenger go away. One way or the other as it were.

I have Flaubert’s fascination with and shyness toward religion.
For the sake of what little purity there is in it, I might have slaughtered half of Christendom, beginning with myself.
Actually, myself would suffice.


And surely any number of folks reading bleak logic of this sort will enthusiatically concur with the last part.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby Moreno » Fri Jul 13, 2012 12:53 am

iambiguous wrote:Bianco Luno

To William James:
I am not allowed to work out my bleak logic without suggesting some way to avert what it describes.
I don’t profess to be an example for you, but I offer this counsel: without turning your face away stop seeing it as bleak.
He could mean a few things here, but I'll react as if I am guessing right. The first sentence seems to mean that one is not allowed to notice and point out problems unless one has a solution. I have always hated that. Oh, yeah, well if you think that system is bad, what would be better? If you can't improve it, don't critique it. As if everyone should have all the skills or be silent, when in fact they might have crucial but incomplete skills for getting away from something bad. But then the second sentence almost seems to contradict this. Here it seems to be that one must simply no longer see things as bleak in whatever the area is. But that's like telling a crying kid to be happy.
Most folks deal with bleak logic by insisting it is not really logical at all. And the way they generally avert it is make the messenger go away. One way or the other as it were.
I think they also label the person negative, having no distinction, when it is convenient, between reacting negatively to negative things and adding negativeness to the universe where there was none.
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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Jul 13, 2012 9:27 pm

Moreno wrote:
iambiguous wrote:Bianco Luno

To William James:
I am not allowed to work out my bleak logic without suggesting some way to avert what it describes.
I don’t profess to be an example for you, but I offer this counsel: without turning your face away stop seeing it as bleak.
He could mean a few things here, but I'll react as if I am guessing right.


With Luno that's your only option. You can circle around a particular meaning but you can never really land. Not with respect to relationships like these.

Moreno wrote:The first sentence seems to mean that one is not allowed to notice and point out problems unless one has a solution. I have always hated that. Oh, yeah, well if you think that system is bad, what would be better? If you can't improve it, don't critique it. As if everyone should have all the skills or be silent, when in fact they might have crucial but incomplete skills for getting away from something bad. But then the second sentence almost seems to contradict this. Here it seems to be that one must simply no longer see things as bleak in whatever the area is. But that's like telling a crying kid to be happy.


My emphasis: Now you're getting closer.

Most folks deal with bleak logic by insisting it is not really logical at all. And the way they generally avert it is make the messenger go away. One way or the other as it were.


Moreno wrote:I think they also label the person negative, having no distinction, when it is convenient, between reacting negatively to negative things and adding negativeness to the universe where there was none.


Or they call him a "troll" who contributes here "in bad faith".
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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