What is a right?

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This topic contains 51 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  Simon Paynton 2 weeks, 2 days ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 52 total)
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  • #24508

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Perhaps you mean treat those within their family unit, perhaps within their community and maybe within their culture ethically?

    Yes.

    it is an instinct shared by all living things, each to seek in its own way to thrive/survive/reproduce maximally.

    This is as false as any statement can be.

    Do you want to thrive?  Yes or no?

    #24509

    Clearsky
    Participant

    Perhaps you mean treat those within their family unit, perhaps within their community and maybe within their culture ethically?

    Yes.

    it is an instinct shared by all living things, each to seek in its own way to thrive/survive/reproduce maximally.

    This is as false as any statement can be.

    Do you want to thrive? Yes or no?

    Unfortunately it’s a logical and valid deductive argument, but the first premise is ambiguous. You need to make a logical & sound argument for it.

    P1) ALL living things want to thrive/reproduce/survive

    P2) You ARE a living thing

    C) therefore YOU want to thrive/reproduce/survive

    Is valid in the same way the following is

    All footballers eat carrots

    You are a footballer

    Therefore you eat carrots

    An argument can be logically valid but not sound, ie the premises correspond to truth in the real world.

    For example if you could find examples that refute the the premise that ALL living things want to thrive,survive,reproduce maximally.

    Just take the case of humans in you experience DO all humans want to thrive/survive/reproduce maximally? Are there one or more examples where this declarative statements is FALSE?

    These are the kinds of tricks religious preachers use, ok their arguments are logically valid but are they empirically true?

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deductive_reasoning

    What you want is an argument where all the premises are empirically true, then the conclusion of your argument will be true.

     

    #24510

    Dennis
    Participant

    Unfortunately it’s a logical and valid deductive argument, but the first premise is ambiguous. You need to make a logical & sound argument for it.

    It’s been pretty much scientifically proven biologically that humans are altruistic toward kin (furthering the survival of their DNA) and toward strangers who agree to share. No logical or sound argument is necessary.

    #24511

    Clearsky
    Participant

    Yes I agree with that, but that argument is at the level of genes, which is different to the individual animal, the individual is a collection of genes. So one example of this is in social insects like ants or bees. Where there are sterile individuals who work for the good of the group ( kin selection) so even if they die if their behaviors mean more genes being passed on. Natural selection  will favour this behavior.

     

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sociobiology

     

    That’s the point, as you have pointed out and has been empirically proven by E.O Wilson

    That all living things want to Thrive/survive/reproduce  maximally  that’s not TRUE for all living beings

    Sometimes for different reasons ( kin selection, group selection, price equilibria) we sometimes think of others above ourselves.

     

    #24513

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    If we extend the idea to take in “inclusive fitness” then the individual level and gene level are reconciled.

    #24514

    Unseen
    Participant

    Values cannot be derived from sets of facts. You may be able to prove that people prefer politicians with low voices (a fact, actually), but that preference cannot be turned into the value “Politicians low voices are better.”

    Values are the result of pure analysis and can’t be derived from laboratory tests, experiments, or statistical analyses of bodies of data. You can’t establish a value with a vote or headcount. What people think about values can be determined that way, but people can be wrong. Even a majority of people. Even every single person.

    DNA is an irrelevant sidebar.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by  Unseen.
    #24516

    Davis
    Participant

    Values cannot be derived from sets of facts.

    Of course they can. Values have always come from a hybrid of assumed axioms (highly conceptual moral frameworks and/or dictated norms) along with facts. The first is almost but not entirely exclusive of facts) the second can use facts to various degrees and various use of logic). The totality of values are not improvised or ad hoc. That is ridiculous. We use observation and facts every day to modify or even realsse new values within our subjective framework/culture. You do too. To say that values in and of themselves cannot be proven through facts is totally correct. To say they are never derived through facts is preposterous.

    #24517

    _Robert_
    Participant

    I agree Davis. I try to align my values with facts of life as I see them. I may be wrong about the facts sometimes and it skews my values. That happens….we all suffer from myopia. The important thing is to always strive to improve our understanding of the truth and our value system.

    #24518

    Unseen
    Participant

    Values cannot be derived from sets of facts.

    Of course they can. Values have always come from a hybrid of assumed axioms (highly conceptual moral frameworks and/or dictated norms) along with facts. The first is almost but not entirely exclusive of facts) the second can use facts to various degrees and various use of logic). The totality of values are not improvised or ad hoc. That is ridiculous. We use observation and facts every day to modify or even realsse new values within our subjective framework/culture. You do too. To say that values in and of themselves cannot be proven through facts is totally correct. To say they are never derived through facts is preposterous.

    Davis, a value is an evaluation. You can apply an evaluation to a set of facts, but the evaluation isn’t fact-based.

    #24519

    Clearsky
    Participant

    David Hume fact/Value divide or what IS and What OUGHT

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Is%E2%80%93ought_problem

    Not sure if there is a clear argument either way, but one way I understand is that what Hume is saying

    That there are facts about the world, what IS and what IS not which can be proved right or wrong. For example ice is cold.

    He is saying that there’s a natural gap between the facts and What we ought do about them. That in his time the press were too quick to have reflexive ought decisions  from facts. Without coming up with clear arguments (often moral) then making a choice based on reasons. There maybe different good reasons and actions.

    One thought experiment is

    Suppose that there is sailor who fell into the sea and to save his life life guard needs to search for him.

    Clearly if seems like this fact (IS) implies that one ought to rescue him right?

    However imagine if to find him it will take 100 people 1 week with a mortality risk of 5% and your about 95% sure this is true.

    Obviously every decent human wants to rescue the sailor, but at a certain level of risk to the rescue party some may not agree ( say 5 people have a 95% chance of dying)

    some may say that they should rescue him whatever the risk.

    from one set of facts about the world we have different sets of values

    We can say if a fact about the world is true or false.

    But you can’t say that about Values, that’s what I think he was implying. That you have to think really hard about ought decisions.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by  Clearsky.
    • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by  Clearsky.
    #24525

    Strega
    Moderator

    A society can bestow rights, whether it be by consensus or legislation.  No human is born with inbuilt rights. They may be born with needs, but unless their social environment chooses to address these, they will not have those needs fulfilled.

    The human basic animal may have urges to ‘thrive’ but the human mind often quashes some of those urges.  People decide not to have children.  People decide to kill themselves or others.  People decide to do all sorts of things that have nothing to contribute to the success of the species.

    That societies aim to survive and expand, is simply part of our evolved minds becoming aware that survival of a society is by its very nature, support for survival of our species; those societies that concerned themselves with expanded survival tended to survive as a group.  Those that did not, were less successful, dying out and leaving the co-operative groups to succeed.

    Those who feel humans have any kind of automatic set of inalienable rights tend to be religious and attribute those rights as having come from an external source, a godly being if you like.

    There is no Collective Hive Mind that guides the human species toward success.  We can, as a society or as societies, agree what should be a right. But we then have to enforce it because we have no ability to ensure every human in the society will accept or comply with the groups decisions.

    [nice topic, Unseen]

    #24526

    Unseen
    Participant

    A society can bestow rights, whether it be by consensus or legislation. No human is born with inbuilt rights… [nice topic, Unseen]

    Rights only exist when legislated by a legitimate institutional authority with the wherewithal—and even more importantly, the will—to enforce them, and a moment’s thinking will reveal that the U.N. isn’t there yet.

    We live in a material world and reproduction is a physical process with physical, not conceptual and certainly not evaluative results. Rights may represent the opinions and aspirations of a people, but will vary immensely from culture to culture and time to time (e.g., the ancient Spartans vs. the contemporary British).

    The “have” in “I have a right” is a rather mysterious and elusive (and illusory) thing. In actuality, the right is held by the guarantor, not the individual claiming to have a right.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by  Unseen.
    #24528

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    Rights only exist when legislated by a legitimate institutional authority with the wherewithal—and even more importantly, the will—to enforce them

    But we bestow and demand rights to/from each other as well, as part of being normal individuals.

    In actuality, the right is held by the guarantor, not the individual claiming to have a right.

    But the individual can claim the right (to thrive ethically).

    #24529

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    assumed axioms

    If we say that the values derived from facts are “obvious”, then we are already assuming values.  To say that values are arbitrary is not to say that they are improvised or ad hoc.  If we say that the primary values are to thrive and survive, this is a very serious business that people would normally not take lightly.

    #24530

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    we bestow and demand rights to/from each other

    I think this is called, treating someone with respect, or respecting someone’s dignity.

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