Humans Are Livestock

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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby WW_III_ANGRY » Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:20 am

HaHaHa wrote:
Carleas wrote:I accept your rematch, though not on the same topic and not for a few weeks. Maybe towards the end of April?

And definitely with different constraints.


I was proposing a rematch on the same topic as I view our debate incomplete.

Unless you want to keep your win by default.


Man, you're basically telling me I did a shit job of judgment. Which you are saying you lost merely because of the format - if that were true and I did a good job of judging, then there would have been no reason to say anything and Carleas won when the format was set up. I don't think that was true - I provided reasons I thought as to why Carleas won not because of the format.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Mictlantecuhtli » Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:24 am

WW_III_ANGRY wrote:
HaHaHa wrote:I think the limitations of this debate is why you would favor Carleas over me. His four posts against my three. Had I been allowed one more post I could of totally blown Carleas out of the water with what I view as ridiculous assertions by him.

This is my first confined internet philosophical debate with somebody one on one where it should be publicly noted for the record.

Next time I debate publicly I will not agree to such egregious limitations and confines of such a debate giving the opposition free reign or favorability. If Carleas is indeed the winner I view it as nothing more than a win by default and certainly not that by wit or reasoning.


I don't know - however your final response left it open for Carleas instead of using it to back your claims. You shouldn't ask questions in your final response of a debate - you should seal your case. Had you done that, perhaps it could've been different - and elaborate more on reasons why you are for the metaphor.

Ultimately I think it was possible to win the debate but the shortness was limiting you as well. You needed longer than 300 word responses to make your case I think.



I felt I did an excellent job explaining the inequities of human hierarchy in elaboration of metaphors that I use.

Carleas went on some political propaganda spiel on how everybody is free and has an abundance of options. This is the kind of idealistic bullshit people of authority or privilege like espousing sanitizing reality in order to cover up and pull over a veil so nobody focuses on what really is going on in the world underneath the seems.

At any rate the next debate I enter in I'll make sure isn't so constricting.
Last edited by Mictlantecuhtli on Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:27 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Mictlantecuhtli » Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:25 am

WW_III_ANGRY wrote:
HaHaHa wrote:
Carleas wrote:I accept your rematch, though not on the same topic and not for a few weeks. Maybe towards the end of April?

And definitely with different constraints.


I was proposing a rematch on the same topic as I view our debate incomplete.

Unless you want to keep your win by default.


Man, you're basically telling me I did a shit job of judgment. Which you are saying you lost merely because of the format - if that were true and I did a good job of judging, then there would have been no reason to say anything and Carleas won when the format was set up. I don't think that was true - I provided reasons I thought as to why Carleas won not because of the format.


I'm certainly shocked by your judgement. Didn't see that coming.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby WW_III_ANGRY » Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:42 am

HaHaHa wrote:I'm certainly shocked by your judgement. Didn't see that coming.


Keep in mind that my judgment is not based on what I think about the metaphor. I put that aside. I think that the metaphor has some viability. I know we do agree on many things - it may be why you asked for me to judge, but as judge I'm going to leave my bias at the door as much as possible.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Artimas » Tue Mar 29, 2016 12:11 pm

Humans are cogs in machines.. Just another brick in the wall.

A "god" who deserves worship will be humble enough to reject it; A "god" who demands worship will not be worthy of it.

All smoke fades, as do all delicate mirrors shatter.

"My ancestors are smiling on me, Imperials. Can you say the same?"

"Science Fiction today ~ Science Fact tomorrow"

Change is inevitable, it can only be delayed or sped up. Choose wisely.

Truth is pain, and pain is gain.


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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Carleas » Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:49 pm

WW_III_ANGRY wrote: I find it interesting that you did find the sarcasm threatening, which probably anyone would in a debate.. but I as an "impartial" judge I wanted his sarcasm backed up with clear concise reason, not just left at sarcasm, for the sake of debate.

This makes sense. A solid point can be driven home by sarcasm that the point has made obvious, but it can't substitute for a point. Sarcasm is icing, but it needs cake.

Again, I think the point could have been fleshed out more in a longer forma. As I read his sarcasm, it was a way of saying a lot with a few words. But I agree that the point could have been made more explicitly.

HaHaHa wrote:I was proposing a rematch on the same topic as I view our debate incomplete.

Well, we should at least refine the topic so that we aren't repeating ourselves. If "humans are livestock" is the metaphor, what's the explicit claim? I'd say that my more nuanced position is that in the modern developed world, most humans are substantially free. Do you disagree with that? And, I should clarify, not 'free' in the sense of "free will", but 'free' in the sense of "not enslaved": they have real choices (as much as a human can have choices), they have substantial influence over the path of their lives (again, as much as that's metaphysically possible).
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Mictlantecuhtli » Wed Mar 30, 2016 1:31 am

My claim is that a huge amount of the human population lives in perpetual slavery in a kind of captivity so that a relatively small portion of the population can live in idle leisure. I associate this with wage slavery and then of course there is the long term unemployed underclass as well. I argue that modern civilization even in the west is nothing more than neofeudalism controlled by a bureaucratic corporatocracy and international oligarchy.

Your understanding of freedom and choices is nothing more to me than institutional propaganda instilled in you.

It is clear to me that you say these things from a position of lower and privilege as a lawyer where I highly suspect you don't know much about the world outside of your gated community. That sounds mean but I am really not trying to be stating such where instead I am being honest in my opinion of you as a person.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Mr Reasonable » Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:42 am

U man bro.,
You see...a pimp's love is very different from that of a square.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Carleas » Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:23 pm

HaHaHa wrote:My claim is that a huge amount of the human population lives in perpetual slavery in a kind of captivity so that a relatively small portion of the population can live in idle leisure. I associate this with wage slavery and then of course there is the long term unemployed underclass as well. I argue that modern civilization even in the west is nothing more than neofeudalism controlled by a bureaucratic corporatocracy and international oligarchy.

But there is a real distinction between current conditions and actual slavery. I understand you are making a metaphorical comparison between working for a living and being a slave, but in non-metaphorical terms, you must agree that they are different things. People who work for a living do have a choice, about how much they work, where they work, who they work for and doing what, and how they spend the money they make. Those choices actually exist. Again, not speaking metaphorically: most people aren't slaves. Slaves are slaves.

HaHaHa wrote:It is clear to me that you say these things from a position of lower and privilege as a lawyer where I highly suspect you don't know much about the world outside of your gated community.

Let's grant this. To the same extent, I could allege that you don't know or associate with the very rich, and assume that having a lot of money and doing very little work go hand in hand. You make no distinction between 'rich' and 'idle rich', and so you assume that everyone wealthy is a parasite on the backs of the working poor.

What these (equally false) claims about us as people demonstrate is that we won't get very far if we rely solely on personal anecdotes to inform our world views. Instead, we should e.g. compare what studies show about modern life to what historical accounts tell us about medieval feudal life; look at hours worked by income to see if wealthier people are actually living lives of mostly leisure; look at the rate of unemployment, median income, hours worked per day, etc. to see who we're talking about when we say "most people", and how much choice most people actually have.

Looking at something beyond our own experiences is essential, since it's fair to take as an assumption that neither of us is omniscient with respect to living conditions experienced by all members of society.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Mictlantecuhtli » Mon Apr 04, 2016 1:30 am

Carleas wrote:
HaHaHa wrote:My claim is that a huge amount of the human population lives in perpetual slavery in a kind of captivity so that a relatively small portion of the population can live in idle leisure. I associate this with wage slavery and then of course there is the long term unemployed underclass as well. I argue that modern civilization even in the west is nothing more than neofeudalism controlled by a bureaucratic corporatocracy and international oligarchy.

But there is a real distinction between current conditions and actual slavery. I understand you are making a metaphorical comparison between working for a living and being a slave, but in non-metaphorical terms, you must agree that they are different things. People who work for a living do have a choice, about how much they work, where they work, who they work for and doing what, and how they spend the money they make. Those choices actually exist. Again, not speaking metaphorically: most people aren't slaves. Slaves are slaves.

HaHaHa wrote:It is clear to me that you say these things from a position of lower and privilege as a lawyer where I highly suspect you don't know much about the world outside of your gated community.

Let's grant this. To the same extent, I could allege that you don't know or associate with the very rich, and assume that having a lot of money and doing very little work go hand in hand. You make no distinction between 'rich' and 'idle rich', and so you assume that everyone wealthy is a parasite on the backs of the working poor.

What these (equally false) claims about us as people demonstrate is that we won't get very far if we rely solely on personal anecdotes to inform our world views. Instead, we should e.g. compare what studies show about modern life to what historical accounts tell us about medieval feudal life; look at hours worked by income to see if wealthier people are actually living lives of mostly leisure; look at the rate of unemployment, median income, hours worked per day, etc. to see who we're talking about when we say "most people", and how much choice most people actually have.

Looking at something beyond our own experiences is essential, since it's fair to take as an assumption that neither of us is omniscient with respect to living conditions experienced by all members of society.


I wonder how you would differentiate between chattel slavery or serfdom versus segments of today's working underclass. Go on Carleas, elaborate what those differences are.

People that work for a living have a choice? What choices are those? Elaborate.


They have choice where they work and how much? Elaborate.


People have a choice in how they spend money? Elaborate.

Yes, the very wealthy are parasites on the working class. You think that you know things? What do you know about food insecurity, starvation, penury, or poverty? My guess is very little if nothing at all.


There is very little difference between European manorial feudalism versus today's corporate feudalism. The corporation is the new manor.

Beyond people's own experiences? You're one to talk on that.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Ecmandu » Mon Apr 04, 2016 1:52 am

*sigh* (I sighed to show I'm cool and above you!)

If you need slaves to succeed.. Ala the republic from Plato. ... Then you are a slave of needing slaves to succeed!!

Thus, we are all slaves!

You're arguing against yourself hahaha!!

For carleas side, once you learn something, it becomes self recursive and thus you transcend it, then you have freedom of choice in the context of the aforementioned slavery that we all suffer from..,

You guys really had a lame debate ...

That's just barely starting the topic...
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Carleas » Mon Apr 04, 2016 2:10 pm

HaHaHa wrote:I wonder how you would differentiate between chattel slavery or serfdom versus segments of today's working underclass. Go on Carleas, elaborate what those differences are.

Taking just the US, which isn't representative (e.g. there are lots more actual slaves outside the US than in the US, both in absolute terms and as a percent of population) but it's what I can find info on this morning and what you seem to be talking about: Here is an article looking at discretionary income in the US, i.e. the income after spending on necessities like food and shelter. The article finds that "the average household has about $1,729 left over after paying the bills each month." That is people in the US have, on average, nearly two grand to do whatever they want with each month.

But that's the average, which is skewed by the very high end of the earnings distribution. So instead look at the second bar chart in the article, which shows discretionary income by income decile. There, we still find that in the wealthiest half of the population, people make over $1000 per month after necessities, and that 70% of the population have over $500 in discretionary spending a month.

The very real difference between slavery and 'wage slavery' is the wages. People who aren't slaves get paid, they generally have money left over after they've met their needs, and they can choose to do with that money whatever they like. This leaves aside the ability to change jobs, to change locations, or to decide to work less because one decides that time is worth more than discretionary income, all of which make life a whole lot different for wage slaves than for actual chattel slaves.

[Edited twice several times, because it's that kind of morning]
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Ecmandu » Mon Apr 04, 2016 6:00 pm

I would say this is somewhat misleading because children cause discretionary income to actually be debt in most situations...
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Carleas » Mon Apr 04, 2016 6:32 pm

They don't say so explicitly, but I think this accounts for dependent care, because while discussing the plot of discretionary income by age, they mention that, "Digging a little deeper, you can see that spending increases in almost every category as you age, up until around age 55, and then it starts to fall. The only category with a continual upward trend is healthcare spending. Both of these make sense, as household expenses likely fall as children move out of the house, and healthcare expenses increase as one gets older."

i.e., the expenses that are being offset before calculating discretionary income include the costs of child-rearing.

Also, it looks like less than half of households actually have children, so distribution of those households across income decile is particularly important.

But, I agree, it would be better if it were explicit and discussed this point.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Ecmandu » Mon Apr 04, 2016 7:35 pm

That's interesting carleas, but I'd note to this study assumes VERY little debt or doesn't seem to describe debt at all... As you well know, it stops at ZERO!

Aside from dependants, it doesn't delve into debt at all, most people are living with something like 10,000 in credit debt!

So dependants is one issue, but it didn't touch debt...

Hell! Donald trump has been in debt most his life !
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Ecmandu » Mon Apr 04, 2016 7:53 pm

Ecmandu wrote:That's interesting carleas, but I'd note to this study assumes VERY little debt or doesn't seem to describe debt at all... As you well know, it stops at ZERO!

Aside from dependants, it doesn't delve into debt at all, most people are living with something like 10,000 in credit debt!

So dependants is one issue, but it didn't touch debt...

Hell! Donald trump has been in debt most his life !


I would actually go so far as to link your article as propaganda ...

This country is what? 15 trillion in debt just on its own account... Not to mention maybe 100 million people in 10,000 dollar credit debt on other accounts??
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Carleas » Mon Apr 04, 2016 8:05 pm

On the chart that plots by decile, the lowest two deciles are indeed negative. But note that negative doesn't mean carrying debt, it means taking on new debt (or rather, having to take on new debt to pay for necessities). One can have a lot of debt and a lot of discretionary income simultaneously, there's no contradiction there. For instance, if you own a house and are making monthly payments, once you've made your monthly payment, whatever's left over is discretionary: you could make an additional payment towards your house, but you could also buy a book, watch a movie, do some drugs, or invest.

If we instead said that someone with high debt had no discretionary income, we'd end up saying that a lot of rich people have low discretionary income, because certain types of debt are a good way to invest and a lot of very wealthy people have a lot of debt on paper. One reason houses are often a good investment is that you can get return on an investment with relatively low interest rates: expected return in the stock market is something like 7-10%, school loans are something like 4-6% interest, and, depending on down payment, home loans rates can be <4%, so even if you could afford to buy a house for cash, you might well be better off taking out a loan and putting the difference in stocks.

And I think a similar argument can be made about national debt (which is not just the sum of the debts of a nation's individuals), but that gets us pretty far afield from this debate :)
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Ecmandu » Mon Apr 04, 2016 8:13 pm

Sure they have discretionary income....

IN DEBT!!

I'm taking hahaha's debate right now, the lame weak form of it, that some of us are slaves...

You argue that discretionary income doesn't define a slave... I argue that most if not all discretionary income is debt in a bubble ... We wouldn't even be a country anymore if we paid all our debt ... So, I argue it's propaganda ... Our discretionary income is all debt! Which means we have no discretionary income! We're all dependents!

To move into hahaha's territory, the elites make us actual slaves (negative discretionary income)
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Carleas » Mon Apr 04, 2016 8:58 pm

Maybe it'd be easier if you described a situation in which you don't see humans living in a society as being enslaved. What's your criteria for the minimum freedom such that people aren't enslaved? For me, having a substantial amount of money that can be exchanged for goods and services of one's choosing is a substantial amount of freedom (and we're just talking about the US, I'd argue most of the world is sufficiently free to not be living in the equivalent of slavery).

This is why in the debate I mentioned the "captivity of stones in a gravity well": if there's no counterfactual society you can describe in which most people are not slaves (which is still a plausible society for humans, given what we know about human societies), then it seems like you're saying that we're slaves to destiny, to fate, to the ticking clock of the cosmos, and not to the supposed 'farmers' atop the modern hierarchy.

As for debt: Say I find a dollar on the street, how is that dollar debt? I can spend it, I can save it, I can burn it, my obligations to others haven't changed as a result of finding that dollar. Similarly, say I do a contract job and am paid for it, how have I taken on additional debt. I can spend my pay, I can save my pay, I can burn my pay, my obligations to others haven't changed as a result of being paid for that job. Where's the debt? The price of a dollar? Change it to a lump of gold, or coal, or a strawberry, or whatever other valuable good you like. How does that affect my debt to another?
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Ecmandu » Mon Apr 04, 2016 9:12 pm

Like I said before...

You define living in a bubble as freedom... And don't calculate debt...

If I'm borrowing $1000 from the casino because I'm a good customer... Do I have discretionary income ... Sure, but it's all debt ...

So basically, you're arguing that as long as we don't have to pay debt, we are not slaves!!

Everyone in America basically lives off debt as discretionary income .. Yet you define them as profit!!
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Carleas » Mon Apr 04, 2016 10:21 pm

Ecmandu wrote:So basically, you're arguing that as long as we don't have to pay debt, we are not slaves!!

With respect to debt, I'm arguing that
- debt isn't bad in itself,
- carrying debt and taking on new debt are different things, and
- plenty of people with plenty of discretionary income also have a lot of debt.

With respect to slavery, I'm arguing that having discretion means we are not slaves, whether that discretion be of income or time or life direction.

Ecmandu wrote:Everyone in America basically lives off debt as discretionary income .. Yet you define them as profit!!

I certainly don't think carrying debt is a sufficient condition to someone is a slave.

Look, if I borrow $1000 from a broker at 1% and use it to buy stock that's gaining value at 7%, that is profit. If I borrow money to buy a house whose price is rising, it is profit. If I borrow money to go to school so that I can get a job that pays three times as much, it is profit.

Debt can be a burden, of course, but it doesn't have to be, and it doesn't have a 1-to-1 relation to discretionary income. Debt can earn you money or it can cost you money.

Ecmandu wrote:You define living in a bubble as freedom

What do you define as freedom?
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Ecmandu » Mon Apr 04, 2016 10:27 pm

Carleas wrote:
Ecmandu wrote:So basically, you're arguing that as long as we don't have to pay debt, we are not slaves!!

With respect to debt, I'm arguing that
- debt isn't bad in itself,
- carrying debt and taking on new debt are different things, and
- plenty of people with plenty of discretionary income also have a lot of debt.

With respect to slavery, I'm arguing that having discretion means we are not slaves, whether that discretion be of income or time or life direction.

Ecmandu wrote:Everyone in America basically lives off debt as discretionary income .. Yet you define them as profit!!

I certainly don't think carrying debt is a sufficient condition to someone is a slave.

Look, if I borrow $1000 from a broker at 1% and use it to buy stock that's gaining value at 7%, that is profit. If I borrow money to buy a house whose price is rising, it is profit. If I borrow money to go to school so that I can get a job that pays three times as much, it is profit.

Debt can be a burden, of course, but it doesn't have to be, and it doesn't have a 1-to-1 relation to discretionary income. Debt can earn you money or it can cost you money.


Investment is not debt !!

I can not be in debt and invest, or I can be in debt and invest...

I agree that sometimes the investment in debt can turn profit, but it's still debt ...

Debt is 1:1 to this degree, the wealthiest keep a debt culture for basic necessities to place us below the actual profit margin, and give us the illusion of discretionary income, which is much different than actually having it!
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Carleas » Mon Apr 04, 2016 10:46 pm

Ecmandu wrote:I agree that sometimes the investment in debt can turn profit, but it's still debt ...

Yes, but can't you agree that this muddies the water? If I'm in debt, but the borrowed money is turning a profit, then I may actually have discretionary income. If I'm in debt, but I am securely employed (or I know my skill-set is valuable enough that I won't have trouble finding work) such that I expect to be able to continue to pay off the debt, I can have discretionary income.

The point is, being in debt doesn't mean that all of your discretionary income is suddenly not discretionary.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Ecmandu » Mon Apr 04, 2016 11:05 pm

Carleas wrote:
Ecmandu wrote:I agree that sometimes the investment in debt can turn profit, but it's still debt ...

Yes, but can't you agree that this muddies the water? If I'm in debt, but the borrowed money is turning a profit, then I may actually have discretionary income. If I'm in debt, but I am securely employed (or I know my skill-set is valuable enough that I won't have trouble finding work) such that I expect to be able to continue to pay off the debt, I can have discretionary income.

The point is, being in debt doesn't mean that all of your discretionary income is suddenly not discretionary.


Well... That's basically what the stock market is, a margin of an investment on debt for profit ...

The us is basically a stock with a high margin (severely in debt) that countries are betting on... That doesn't mean the us isn't in debt!

I'd argue even further to point out that we have a stratified economy that depends on debt to assure interest or property for the fat cats... The illusion of discretion is an aspect of how highly evolved this system of accumulation has become.
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Re: Humans Are Livestock

Postby Carleas » Tue Apr 05, 2016 2:33 am

This line of discussion seems only to be confusing things. Payments due on debt are among the necessities that are paid out of earnings, leaving discretionary income. I don't buy the argument that as long as the debt persists, the discretionary income isn't 'really' discretionary, because while one has the option of paying down debt, one also has the option of not paying it down. That is a real choice, one of many beyond the set of choices actual slaves have. Do you see any of the preceding discussion as contradicting that? If so, could you spell out the point in some more detail?
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