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Hayabusa Rider

Admin Emeritus & Elite Member
Jan 26, 2000
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Except, as noted, the author was explicitly talking about "always, everywhere, and for anyone" SOLELY WITHIN THE STATED REALM of physical or social facts. You seem to miss that all important caveat which defines the scope of the author's discussion, even though I posted it.



Gosh, Rich, thanks! :p No need, though, for I am one of those "spiritual people" myself. Yet I am secure in my spirituality, so I wasn't triggered into thinking the article was attacking spiritual people or the realm of spiritual belief, as you were.

The author explicitly confined his article to the realm of that which can be conclusively fact checked. The spiritual world cannot be conclusively fact checked.

No matter how or what you or I or anyone believes spiritually, no one person can conclusively prove what they believe to any non-believer with . . . facts.



As a deeply spiritual person, that doesn't bother me one whit. You can't argue belief and I don't try. Which is probably why I was better able to read this article and not be defensively triggered by it. The author is exclusively talking about the physical plane, not the spiritual.

Triggered, no unconvinced, yes. I'm not going to lose a moment's rest, although the subject itself and where it leads is fascinating to me. If you haven't read "Problems" is interesting and accessible.

I could continue the argument, in the true sense of the "argue" but it's not like this is Politics and News with Philosophy tossed in. :D
 

Ajay

Diamond Member
Jan 8, 2001
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Excellent article and well written - thanks perk! I’m afraid our Fox News infused friends are impervious to some practical philosophy.
 
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Perknose

Forum Director & Omnipotent Overlord
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I could continue the argument, in the true sense of the "argue" but it's not like this is Politics and News with Philosophy tossed in. :D
As I stated in my OP, the title given the article is clickbait and unfortunate. The author excerpted from a hoary old screed that was dead nuts reductionist and limited to that which can be objectively and conclusively verified. He was talking about the "immorality" and dangerous consequences of clinging to beliefs that can be objectively, concretely disproved . . . such as the earth is flat or that Trump is a godly man and truth teller who always seeks to help the little guy.

I believe you saw the author as offensively and wrongly denying the very morality of your philosophical and moral beliefs for the astoundingly bankrupt idea that they are but beliefs. Calm down. He wasn't. He wasn't addressing those heights, he wasn't even thinking about that more rarefied realm. He wasn't even going there. At all.

If you re-read the article sans such reaction, I believe (pun intended) you will see that he distinctly had in mind only that which exits in the concrete world.

Edit: For me, this discussion is a distraction from the main thrust of the article.
 
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realibrad

Lifer
Oct 18, 2013
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As I stated in my OP, the title given the article is clickbait and unfortunate. The author excerpted from a hoary old screed that was dead nuts reductionist and limited to that which can be objectively and conclusively verified. He was talking about the "immorality" and dangerous consequences of clinging to beliefs that can be objectively, concretely disproved . . . such as the earth is flat or that Trump is a godly man and truth teller who always seeks to help the little guy.

I believe you saw the author as offensively and wrongly denying the very morality of your philosophical and moral beliefs for the astoundingly bankrupt idea that they are but beliefs. Calm down. He wasn't. He wasn't addressing those heights, he wasn't even thinking about that more rarefied realm. He wasn't even going there. At all.

If you re-read the article sans such reaction, I believe (pun intended) you will see that he distinctly had in mind only that which exits in the concrete world.

Edit: For me, this discussion is a distraction from the main thrust of the article.
The problem is that it totally misses the problem. People are not typically believers because they purposefully ignore things that would disprove their position.

Take flat Earth people. They truly believe that there is better evidence that they are right. They also believe counter evidence is part of a conspiracy. Thus, you can't use evidence in that case. Trump has created the same thing. That's why his supporters ignore what is reported, it's fake news or news from the conspiracy.

I'm not saying I know how to stop him, which we should, but that is the problem.
 

dank69

Lifer
Oct 6, 2009
28,846
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The problem is that it totally misses the problem. People are not typically believers because they purposefully ignore things that would disprove their position.

Take flat Earth people. They truly believe that there is better evidence that they are right. They also believe counter evidence is part of a conspiracy. Thus, you can't use evidence in that case. Trump has created the same thing. That's why his supporters ignore what is reported, it's fake news or news from the conspiracy.

I'm not saying I know how to stop him, which we should, but that is the problem.
So you're saying they ignore verifiable evidence.
 

realibrad

Lifer
Oct 18, 2013
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So you're saying they ignore verifiable evidence.
Yes, but, they do not think they are and thus the title of the article does not fit. Sure, there are a large number of people that believe claims and have no evidence.

The argument this article is making is 100% valid in the context that you should form your beliefs from evidence. The issue is with the OP is that he does not understand things as well as he believes which is why he makes the argument about the political Right as he sees it.

The people that he is bringing up are not people that have beliefs that are unsupported. The data they use is not factual, not well supported if at all supported, but, its data.

The OP understands that people are basing their beliefs on what he calls lies, which is another way of saying their beliefs are based on invalid data. The mistake Perk makes is not realizing the implications. What we have are people that are forming and holding beliefs on information that is not credible.

Thus, the issue for those people is not that they need to seek information to back their claims, its that they need to seek valid and credible sources. That is a very large distinction that the OP appears not to be able to make and or understand.
 

Paratus

Lifer
Jun 4, 2004
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Bingo! Do we just believe claims or do we not?
My God no I do not support him or those horrible things.

Why on Earth would you believe I did?
Do we just believe your claim or not?

It seems you suggested eyewitness statements aren’t evidence to be evaluated.

Does that only apply to sexual assault and harassment or would it apply to someone’s declarative statements as well?

Maybe we should take people’s claims as another form evidence?
 

realibrad

Lifer
Oct 18, 2013
12,337
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Do we just believe your claim or not?

It seems you suggested eyewitness statements aren’t evidence to be evaluated.

Does that only apply to sexual assault and harassment or would it apply to someone’s declarative statements as well?

Maybe we should take people’s claims as another form evidence?
No, you need to justify your position that I believe something with evidence. You don't need to believe me at all, which is the point. I can show many times on this forum where I said Trump is shitty. Before you even get to my claim, you should have stopped at not having evidence that I hold the aforementioned position.

That said...

I clearly said we should stop Trump. You asked me in a previous thread if I needed explicit examples of something, or if I could infer. Can you not do the same when I say what he does is horrible and that he should be stopped as evidence?
 

Perknose

Forum Director & Omnipotent Overlord
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"realibrad, post: 39638197, member: 336174":

"Yes, but, they do not think they are and thus the title of the article does not fit. Sure, there are a large number of people that believe claims and have no evidence.

The argument this article is making is 100% valid in the context that you should form your beliefs from evidence. The issue is with the OP is that he does not understand things as well as he believes which is why he makes the argument about the political Right as he sees it.

The people that he is bringing up are not people that have beliefs that are unsupported. The data they use is not factual, not well supported if at all supported, but, its data.

The OP understands that people are basing their beliefs on what he calls lies, which is another way of saying their beliefs are based on invalid data. The mistake Perk makes is not realizing the implications. What we have are people that are forming and holding beliefs on information that is not credible.

Thus, the issue for those people is not that they need to seek information to back their claims, its that they need to seek valid and credible sources. That is a very large distinction that the OP appears not to be able to make and or understand."

^^^ The bolded, posted by YOU, is exactly the point of the article. o_O :eek: :rolleyes:

Sweet Jeebus you are so ridiculously dense, it's world class jaw dropping! You are your own joke, except that the joke is on us, your fellow posters, who have to put up with the endless idiot perseverations emanating from your badly broken brain.

I simply must award you the rarely deserved THREE Colberts:
 

realibrad

Lifer
Oct 18, 2013
12,337
894
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"realibrad, post: 39638197, member: 336174":

"Yes, but, they do not think they are and thus the title of the article does not fit. Sure, there are a large number of people that believe claims and have no evidence.

The argument this article is making is 100% valid in the context that you should form your beliefs from evidence. The issue is with the OP is that he does not understand things as well as he believes which is why he makes the argument about the political Right as he sees it.

The people that he is bringing up are not people that have beliefs that are unsupported. The data they use is not factual, not well supported if at all supported, but, its data.

The OP understands that people are basing their beliefs on what he calls lies, which is another way of saying their beliefs are based on invalid data. The mistake Perk makes is not realizing the implications. What we have are people that are forming and holding beliefs on information that is not credible.

Thus, the issue for those people is not that they need to seek information to back their claims, its that they need to seek valid and credible sources. That is a very large distinction that the OP appears not to be able to make and or understand."

^^^ The bolded, posted by YOU, is exactly the point of the article. o_O :eek: :rolleyes:

Sweet Jeebus you are so ridiculously dense, it's world class jaw dropping! You are your own joke, except that the joke is on us, your fellow posters, who have to put up with the endless idiot perseverations emanating from your badly broken brain.

I simply must award you the rarely deserved THREE Colberts:
Again, you appear to be coming up against your inability to understand.

The article can be summarized in 2 points.

-"In ‘The Ethics of Belief’ (1877), Clifford gives three arguments as to why we have a moral obligation to believe responsibly, that is, to believe only what we have sufficient evidence for, and what we have diligently investigated."

-Beliefs have consequences.

We disagree on the implications of the first part. To use a previous example, flat earthers believe they have sufficient evidence for, and have diligently investigated their position. The problem they are having is their filters for what they are seeing a sufficient and diligent.

You are saying they need to use their tools, but, you are unable to realize that their tools need fixing. Their bias is so strong that it filters all of what they are perceiving. What you think is insufficient they see as sufficient. What you think is not diligent they see as diligent. So when you say they need to do more, it will have the same outcome.

This is why I asked you from the first post, what your point was. If you want to reach the people that are getting things wrong, you will fail. If you want to signal to everyone that you have a position, then your post works. Effectively telling people to do more of what is wrong will not help. You need to show them how its wrong, and you have done none of that here, which is why I question your understanding.
 

cfenton

Senior member
Jul 27, 2015
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What happens if one believes in doing good regardless of the reason as it could be argued that good is of necessity arbitrary whether assumed to be from God, an individual or societies? One might be in error and yet do what is seen to be good in a society, perhaps because of that "mistake".
Then they performed a good action for the wrong reason. How that shakes out morally depends on your views about the importance of reasons. I'm a deontologist, I think reasons are an important component of moral evaluation.


I would argue that morality is not a type of thing appropriately pronounced in this context, that it is in itself not applicable.
I'm sure there are lots of beliefs that one can hold without evidence that are morally neutral. Like I said, I think the original claim is extreme. If I believe atoms are the smallest particle, I'm wrong, but it's not clear to me that I've failed morally.


I would also argue that this is not an epistemological failure, because epistemology is not entirely about objective reality. Knowledge is of many sorts.

I suggest Russells "Problems of Philosophy" which does a nice job of bringing doubt to any claim of knowing objective reality with not a teapot but a table.
This strikes me as an odd claim. While there are certainly reasons to be skeptical about what we can know, I'm not aware of any arguments that we can know anything beyond what exists. Epistemology is messy, but you need some justification for a belief. The disagreement is mostly about what counts as a justification.

Anyway, we come to a question of the basis of why acts are not moral if they are not based on evidence is an appropriate metric.
Well, again, I think reasons are an important component of moral evaluation. Doing a good thing for the right reason is better than doing a good thing for the wrong reason. Part of having a right reason is having a justification. As I said earlier, there are lots of actions that are morally neutral. Picking chocolate ice cream over vanilla doesn't require evidence. But, sometimes acting on a belief held without evidence (or justification) causes harm, and if that harm could have been avoided by following the available evidence, then you have done something morally wrong.
 

Hayabusa Rider

Admin Emeritus & Elite Member
Jan 26, 2000
50,872
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I'm not aware of any arguments that we can know anything beyond what exists
What about arguments of all that exists can be known? That what is known can be demonstrated?

We come to problems of justification here. There may be internal knowledge which we cannot demonstrate as truth but is known to be true by the individual. As the event corresponds to something which was experienced, there is justification. As it is a genuine event, it is true. You may or not believe me relating this, but this particular event was communicated to my wife and then witnessed by her. You might say "You are a liar". I cannot disprove you. You might say "where is your empirical data" or "how can you explain this". I have none and I can't explain, yet it happened and you either take my word or not.

Where does that fall into the scheme of the person writing the article?
 

Ajay

Diamond Member
Jan 8, 2001
9,235
3,789
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You are saying they need to use their tools, but, you are unable to realize that their tools need fixing. Their bias is so strong that it filters all of what they are perceiving. What you think is insufficient they see as sufficient. What you think is not diligent they see as diligent. So when you say they need to do more, it will have the same outcome.
Did you read the whole article? The thinking of the flat earthers is exactly what the author via Clifford is warning against. The fact that flat eathers are resistant to evidence is the point. Via their own agency these people endanger the precious deposit of common knowledge. I should probably be punished for following this diversion.
 

realibrad

Lifer
Oct 18, 2013
12,337
894
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Did you read the whole article? The thinking of the flat earthers is exactly what the author via Clifford is warning against. The fact that flat eathers are resistant to evidence is the point. Via their own agency these people endanger the precious deposit of common knowledge. I should probably be punished for following this diversion.
Flat earthers are resistant to what they think is invalid evidence. You do the same thing when presented with data that you deem invalid. The problem is that their filter is broken.

Here is an example. Lets say Trump says "MS 13 is coming to kill you Ajay". He provides nothing beyond that. You logically dismiss that because Trump is seen by you as a liar and he has also given you no evidence. The reason you have dismissed it is thus that Trump is an invalid source for that claim. You would also dismiss a Trump supporter that made the same claim based on their support.

But, if the FBI came to your door, and said the same thing, you would think differently. That is because the FBI has credibility that Trump does not.

But, what if you think that its inherently impossible. Anyone presenting evidence that MS 13 is out to get you would be wrong no matter what they say. Then, mix in that you believe there is a conspiracy to make you believe that. Well, any evidence gets thrown out too.

In that case, evidence would be pointless as the issue is that you believe its inherently wrong, and there is a conspiracy to spread misinformation. Doing what the article argues for would be pointless as you are not addressing the issue.

I will now signal that this is in large part the damage Trump is now doing. He is ruining the credibility of anything that disagrees with him. Those institutions are the foundation of a civil society and breaking them for that selfish goal will hurt us all.
 

cfenton

Senior member
Jul 27, 2015
277
99
101
What about arguments of all that exists can be known? That what is known can be demonstrated?

We come to problems of justification here. There may be internal knowledge which we cannot demonstrate as truth but is known to be true by the individual. As the event corresponds to something which was experienced, there is justification. As it is a genuine event, it is true. You may or not believe me relating this, but this particular event was communicated to my wife and then witnessed by her. You might say "You are a liar". I cannot disprove you. You might say "where is your empirical data" or "how can you explain this". I have none and I can't explain, yet it happened and you either take my word or not.

Where does that fall into the scheme of the person writing the article?
An example would help me understand you better here. By internal knowledge do you mean knowledge about your experiences? For example, you experience pain in your foot, so you believe you're foot is sore? You can't prove to me that your foot is sore, but it is. That would be justification based on perception. Generally, you can trust your direct experiences unless you have a conflicting reason not to trust them. You'd be justified in your belief that you saw Jim if you saw him from two feet away in good light, but much less justified if you thought you saw him from 100 feet away at midnight. If that's the kind of internal knowledge you're talking about, then the beliefs are justified, so they are not morally problematic.
 

realibrad

Lifer
Oct 18, 2013
12,337
894
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Ah, I see. You're just another very fine person who independently doesn't like those pesky brown and black fellows.
Where are you getting that from? Just because I disagreed with the OP on something, I must be a Trump supporter and a racist?

Not a Trump supporter.
Not a Racist.
No Homophobia.
No Xenophobia.

Seriously, what was it that made you think that? Are you maybe confusing me with someone else? It can't be something from this thread right?
 
Jun 19, 2004
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Where are you getting that from? Just because I disagreed with the OP on something, I must be a Trump supporter and a racist?

Not a Trump supporter.
Not a Racist.
No Homophobia.
No Xenophobia.

Seriously, what was it that made you think that? Are you maybe confusing me with someone else? It can't be something from this thread right?
Your posting history speaks for itself.
 

momeNt

Diamond Member
Jan 26, 2011
9,297
350
126
I dont understand why this thread has turned into an attack realibrad thread. He makes a good point, the article itself is rather meaningless, there are tons of people who believe things that are false but they believe they believe it with evidence. They didn't just decide one day to think the earth was flat for no reason.

The real problem here is we have people like Perk and a few others that constantly are looking to find anything they can and relate it to Trump. Having something bother you so much (Trump's presidency) when it is something you can do almost nothing about, is not healthy, and it is taking its toll on a few of our members here, they are spiraling out of control relating an author from almost 150 years ago and making it about Trump. That is pretty close to rock bottom if you ask me. Seek help people, don't wait for it to be free, just go now before it is too late.
 

ImpulsE69

Lifer
Jan 8, 2010
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825
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Lies can easily be "manufactured" by unnamed sources and still be believed by misinformed people depending only on what they see/read on TV, social media, newspapers. A lot of people from whatever background tend not to check for verifiable "facts" and fall whatever is presented to them as "the absolute truth". Someone can be biased because they believe that the political party they affiliate with has moral values while the other party lacks it. Data from polls can be presented to show a candidate is leading overwhelmingly , but in the end people will see the truth behind the lies and do the right thing. It's been 2 tumultuous years since a widely unliked/idiotic/vilified President was elected and still to this day the other candidate couldn't fathom and accept the loss of what they believe was "my turn", how presumptuous was that?. Now the US is the laughing stock around the world because of this. o_O:rolleyes:
Well you run into this downhill rabbit hole of 'everyone is lying to you'. Who do you believe? This is becoming more and more of an issue.
 

ImpulsE69

Lifer
Jan 8, 2010
14,793
825
126
So you're saying they ignore verifiable evidence.
Verifiable by who? Who do you believe if everyone is telling you everyone is lying or don't know what they are talking about. Do you believe the bible? Why not? Millions do and have for centuries. Who's right? (just an example).

An average person can't (per your example) personally validate the earth ISN'T flat without some way out there effort.

The average person relies on someone to tell them what is true. This was school, this was adults. This was media. This used to be simpler before media became entrenched in worrying more about ratings and advertising dollars than news. Now, you have a man telling everyone that the media is lying to them, WHILE in the same breath he lies to them about something. Video and audio (or tweet) evidence of him lying, and yet he will deny it. People don't know who to believe so instead they side with whatever closest aligns with what they personally believe, right or wrong.
 

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