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Eiuol

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Everything posted by Eiuol

  1. Eiuol

    The Trolley Problem

    Didn't you already answer this yourself? I mean, you'd be more likely to kill somebody who is a brilliant doctor or something like that. More versus less. And anyway, I think you have it backwards. He was talking about letting a child die if it meant saving a million people.
  2. Eiuol

    The Trolley Problem

    It was a joke. Besides, it's silly to think what you think you would do would always match what you actually do. Anything about moral psychology research reveals that as much as people can imagine a scenario, the vast majority of people fail to predict their own behavior.
  3. Eiuol

    The Trolley Problem

    With real blood, real pain, and real bodies?
  4. I wrote this paper for my own purposes to explain and think more about what makes an object an object. I don't think my idea is incompatible with Objectivism, and it offers new and interesting ideas. Feel free to nit-pick, I edited it to get the exact words I want. Might the universe be an object? I look at something in front of me. I recognize it as a table: four legs, flat surface, wooden. Other things are placed on its surface, like a pencil and a camera. I am comfortable with these identifications. After all, I can touch them, see them, even hear them if I move them in a certain way. Furthermore, I can see edges where one thing ends and the other begins. In other words, these things are entities: things which are bounded and distinct[1]. Through their behavior, they exhibit an identity. Even more, the identity of these entities is independent of my seeing or recognizing them. The entire world in front of me is this way, filled with entities. My perception allows me to see this. Consider that a table is made of parts which are not accessible in a perceptual way. Certainly, I can chop off the legs of the table and then have individual legs, but this is no problem because the legs still remain directly accessible to unaided perception. The parts that I am talking about are not accessible to unaided perception, that is, what the table is decomposable into and is therefore constituted of. The table is constituted of molecules, which cannot be detected just by looking. With a microscope molecules can be detected, and they would have the same distinctness I recognize when I looked at the table without any help. In order to make the distinction between things which I can see without assistance of the things I can't see without assistance, I will consider objects to be both of these, while I will consider entities to be those things that I can see without assistance. Such a distinction is important because I cannot recognize the aspects of a molecule in the same way I can recognize the aspects of a table. A different method is required in order to comprehend a molecule, that is, reliance on tools. A related consideration for the ontology I am sketching out is the objects on the table. To put it simply, the objects share no causal identity to the extent they are distinct and unconnected. The only aspect they all have in common in relation to each other is a spatial characteristic. The camera is on the table, which is as far as the relationship between table and camera extends. I could refer to them as “objects on the table”, and treat them as a set in order to talk about statements like “I knocked over the table, so everything fell off” or “the table is full, I can't put another object on it”. However, there is nothing causal about one object to another in the set of objects on the table. They do not form a system whose constituents operate together. So far, this ontology is nothing radical, and even common sense. Is this all there is to consider though? If I stop here, I may as well say it was sufficient for the Greeks to consider what was immediately and directly available to their perception. As soon as I recognize concrete constituents of an object, and recognize that these constituents are also objects, I need to think about the relation these constituents stand towards other constituents which are not available to unaided perception. Is the relationship only spatial? Or are they directly and causally related, despite my inability to see this possible relationship without a microscope? Intuitively, my answer is that they are causally related exactly because any further distinction I have made is based on having recognized an entity with which I could use a microscope on. The set of objects on the table on the other hand are not reduced from my having seen a larger entity. I did not see an entity and then break it down further. In this way, I have determined that the universe cannot be object. The above view I call perceptual ontology, i.e. ontology bounded and set by perceptual capacities. Important to keep in mind is that objecthood doesn’t depend upon perceptual capacities. Rather, the class of existents (e.g. ideas, concretes, actions) that qualify as objects are specified by what is perceptually detectable without aid and its decomposition. As characterized, perceptual ontology is immediately vulnerable to subjectivity in metaphysics. Indeed, in terms of epistemology, perceptual capacities need not imply a subjectivist epistemology -- there could still be definitive and objective rules to recognizing or knowing that an object is in fact an object. Even more, entities can be considered primary or fundamental to comprehending metaphysics. However, since what qualifies as an object is a direct consequence of a physical reduction from the entity level, I begin to wonder about creatures smaller than humans and what they can see as entities [2]. A microscopic bacteria could detect molecules unaided, that is, molecules would be entities to a microscopic bacteria. Anything too much larger may as well be like the set of objects on the table -- perhaps connected but not complete and entirely contained. Going the other direction, in principle, a massive creature could detect groups of planets like a person detects a dog. The group of planets could plausibly be an entity specifically to that creature. By this reasoning, to a human the group of planets is a set of planets yet not an object because they were not a reduction from the entity level, while the massive creature sees the group of planets on the entity level so the group would qualify as an object. If the very category of existents that qualify as objects in the first place vary based on perceptual differences, the resulting metaphysics would be a direct consequence of the given subject and not a direct consequence of reality. The schema of this problem is easily illustrated: 1. a = {c1, c2, c…, cn}; the constituents of Cx are united as a single abstraction a 2. e = {c1, c2, c…, cn} = {o1, o2, o…, on}; the constituents of Cx are united as entity e. Any element of Cx or unification within Cx is an object. 3. Per(Cx) = e; the function, i.e. the faculty of perception, which recognizes some aspect of the world as bounded and distinct as opposed to an abstraction. The perception of set Cx is sufficient and necessary for set Cx to be an entity and all its elements to be objects. 1 is equivalent to the earlier “objects on the table”. Each constituent is an element of the abstraction. 2 is equivalent to a table constituted by molecules and follows a pattern similar to 1. All constituents of entities are objects. 3 means that what qualifies as an entity will be different for any variation of perceptual faculties. 4. The whole set C being an object or not therefore depends on the perceptual capacities of the creature in question. The unity is an object if and only if the constituents are already a division of an entity. Otherwise, it is an abstraction or mental object, which is by definition neither physical nor independent of one’s awareness. One solution to the problem is that efforts to define objects are inherently subjective, that there is in fact no way to objectively state what is or is not an object in any circumstance. More specifically, there is not a multiplicity of objects in reality. Thus, the word “object” ceases to have meaning - there is either exactly one object, or no objects. With Hindu philosophy, there is singular “object” called Brahman, the underlying nature of reality[3]. Any further distinction is considered “maya”, illusion[4]. At worst, maya is human conceit attempting to satisfy a constant desire to label and categorize, a cause of suffering. At best, it is the world of appearances that the subject acknowledges, which need not determine how the world really is. Brahman is in fact a singularity of all, the only “object” which really counts. So on it goes, towards the denial of one's own ego, towards passive acceptance of existence. Such a consequence is hardly worthwhile. Argument by consequence, however, is not reason to reject a metaphysical claim. If existence is exactly one object, then that’s how it is, for better or worse. The consequence only alters my response to the fact; it may impact the epistemology I develop, or my ethical theories, but disliking the consequences is not a counterargument. The idea of a singularity is wrong because it is parasitic upon more fundamental premises: to speak of a singularity requires having already defined or conceptualized a variety of objects. Denying a multiplicity of objects would just as well deny the means to conceptualize or witness Brahman – denying perception. Ultimately, then, the “solution” is to wipe away a perceiver, such that perceptual faculties are ignored. While metaphysics does not take into account a perceiver for a claim to be valid, coming to understand metaphysical claims takes addressing how one is conscious of reality. It seems that rather than reality being a singularity, there is a threshold on the number of objects one is able to grasp[5]. So, perception’s limits leave me unable to determine which things qualify as objects - besides what I see as an entity, and its constituents. Accepting that there is a threshold on the number of qualifiable objects due to one’s perceptual faculties is no solution, either. This would be taking a stance in favor of maya instead of a singularity. I’d be saying there are an unknown and ungraspable set of objects in reality[6]. If the set of all objects in reality include these “invisible” objects, then all the criteria for an object to fit into the set of all objects are unknown. By this point, it would not be determinable if the known objects really qualify as objects. I would not be able to say if they should be disqualified as objects – for I would be admitting no one will ever find out all the necessary criteria of objecthood. Some currently-known objects may turn out to be non-objects. Unfortunately, no one would ever be able to find out. As a result, no objects in reality are graspable. Imagine the set of all known fruits, then also yet-to-be-discovered fruits. Both sets are graspable, the criteria for qualifying as a fruit can be understood differently in the future, perhaps leading me to recategorize. But if there are a set of extra-dimensional fruits that are unknowable and ungraspable because of the limits to perception, then the set of all fruits would lack any definable criteria. Apples qualify, as do bananas, but I would never know about gooblegorks. If I will never know of gooblegorks, nor why they qualify as fruits, likewise, I won’t know why apples or bananas qualify. So, the entire category of fruit becomes arbitrary or merely nominal - maya. There would be no basis to say what fruits are or are not besides a subjective impression. The same form of reasoning would apply to “invisible” objects. Of course, the above paragraph is a discussion of epistemology. At the same time, any solution to a problem can only be reached by referring to the thinking required. The greater point is to emphasize that all solutions so far are parasitic upon defining objecthood already by means of my awareness and consciousness. A solution requires keeping the idea that entities are distinct and bounded - explaining objecthood any other way is parasitic. The solution I see is to say that objects are also the things entities supercompose into. Just as a table decomposes into molecules, certain entities may supercompose[7] into greater objects. In this way, all things that are objects depend on composability. Entities help with a starting point for qualifying objects; composability as a principle makes use of entities; entities are not a threshold for objecthood. Thus I avoid parasitism issues. I am maintaining premises 1 and 2, the premises pertaining to entities as a basis to qualifying an ontology. Explicitly, I am denying that function 3 expressed as perception (and the tools to extend perception) and decomposability expressed as 2 are sufficient to determine objecthood. Rather, I am proposing that composability is needed – decomposition only works because of composition. Stated generally for any object: 5. Comp(c1 + c2 + c… + cn) = o; the function, i.e. the composing, of a set of constituents. The composibility of set Cx is sufficient and necessary for set Cx to be an object and all its elements to be objects. Stated for any object greater than an entity: 6. SuperComp(e1 + e2 + e… + en) = o; the function, i.e. the supercomposing, of a set of entities. The supercomposibility of set Ex is sufficient and necessary for set Ex to be an object and all its elements to be objects. Why not instead suppose that composition extends infinitely? Because a supercomposition is a combination of entities. If the cardinality of E is 30, then the possible number of supercompositions is 30c30. Each round of compositions will be fewer, and so on until the resulting combination in a single object. A number of the proceeding arguments are why compositions end at a single object as opposed to two or more. If tables decompose into molecules, then molecules compose into tables. In principle, there is no reason to say nothing composes from entities like tables into “supertable”. There is no necessity to stop composition at the level of entity. All that can be said is that determining composition is difficult. Certainly, “supertable” is not an object, because a group of tables have no causal relation, only a spatial relation like objects on a table. Yet if a group of entities have a causal relation, the group is just as much an object as a table composed of molecules. Not just any causal relation will work, though. Two balls bouncing off each other is a direct causal relation, but they still are not singular. They need to be a bounded and distinct unity to be a singular “ballcluster” object as well as two balls. Similarly as an example, two molecules passing through one another doesn’t alone render them into a table. Three necessary conditions are robust enough for a group of objects to be a composition. Among the group’s elements, there would need to be causal relation strong enough to be called an object as opposed to an abstraction. Systematic The elements in a group of objects operate together simultaneously and affect one another. A loss of one constituent will affect how the group behaves. Taking flour out of a cake recipe will radically alter all aspects of a cake, including texture, shape, baking time, and more. Flour itself will not alter the nature of eggs, but the unity of flour and eggs along with the rest of the ingredients make a specific cake. The nature of the group is different if any element is taken out. Relational A function exists which binds the elements in a group of objects. Being relational makes explicit that the elements are connected. “Next to” is a relation, as is “X > Y” and “the moon orbited the earth”. Emergence The resulting group possesses one or more attributes which none of the individual elements possess. For example, people are volitional, but their constituents are not volitional – a single neuron is not volitional. Likewise, the process of life and the resulting attribute of being alive don’t make all of a creature’s constituent elements alive. The fact that properly arranging constituents in just the right way (the right mix of carbon molecules, the right external conditions like temperature, etc.) results in a living creature suggests that the constituents form a causal unity with each other. There are no good examples of a supercomposition aside from science fiction. However, one particular candidate may qualify as a supercomposition: the universe, the unification of all objects that exist. If true, there would be interesting clarifications and ideas regarding identity. First, I need to determine if the universe is an object. The universe is systematic. All objects that exist make up the nature of the universe. The actions of a planet orbiting a star impacts other stars and other stars’ planets. It is possible to focus on planets as singulars, but the idea is planets and impacted stars, and so on, operate as a system. The more alterations within a system, the more each element will be altered. Taking into account all objects at once is only an expansion of this. Moreover, given that causality never ceases at some ultimate point in time[8], the effects of one object will necessarily continue eternally within the system to the degree the system is complete and bounded. In terms of the universe, it is bounded by all that exists. The universe is the most complete system there is, and its bounds are definite. There is nothing to remove from the universe, and there is nothing to add. Otherwise, the system is incomplete, meaning that it is something different than the universe as defined. The universe is all related. At minimum, by virtue of being physical, there is a spatial relation between all objects. Two asteroids, or two atoms, placed at opposite ends of the universe bear a spatial relation. The spatial relation makes it possible in principle for any two objects to effect a causal relation. There is always a chronological relation as well, as any group of objects will be acting in some manner. The universe has emergent attributes. Exactly the emergent properties of the universe are for cosmologists to discover through science. Cosmology, however, is not the only way to figure out in general attributes unique to the universe. As a complete whole, time holds between all objects at once, which requires a unique time standard. A universal time standard cannot be identical to time standards of more narrow systems. If it were identical, it would be part of an identical system – identical standards would mean using a standard not defined by the context of all objects. So, a time attribute of the universe is emergent, assuming the universe’s systematicity is true. This leads to saying all objects operate together; the actions of one object affect the rest because time applies equally. This is why knowledge of one fact affects how all knowledge is structured. Many more examples of all three are possible. The main idea is that causality spreads in a systematically related way across a system with emergent attributes, or for all constituents of a given object. Applied to the whole universe, causality is eternal and will not cease as long as the universe exists. Eternal causality entails a systematically related universe with at least one emergent attribute. Thus, the universe is an object. A similar idea is that the universe is plenum[9], a continuous substance that connects all things that exist. To be clear, a theory of compositionality is not compatible with universe-as-plenum. Plenum would be a theory that the universe is an object because all objects are directly related spatially - the universe is a Jell-O slab with pieces of fruit suspended inside. But as I argued before, a spatial relation is insufficient for a group of objects to be an object. The added “closeness” of plenum does not help. Instead, compositionality is a theory that the universe is perpetuum[10], a total expanse of all that exists linked by causality. I call it perpetual ontology. <<>> [1] This sense of the word entity is intended to be the same as Rand: "The first concepts man forms are concepts of entities—since entities are the only primary existents. (Attributes cannot exist by themselves, they are merely the characteristics of entities; motions are motions of entities; relationships are relationships among entities.)" -ITOE, page 15. [2] I'm reminded of Peikoff's thought experiment on meta-energy puffs. OPAR, pages 45-47. [3] The Brahman is not apprehendable by human means. A yogi may feel being one with the Brahman, but not through their perceptual faculties to see or grasp it. C.f. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brahman [4] Maya is not just perceptual illusion, but all ways of conceiving of the world whether through perception or cognition. C.f. http://www.davar.net/EXTRACTS/FICTION/INDIAN.HTM [5] To grasp is used here as a term to cover any form of grasping from mere perceptual awareness to conceptualization. Knowledge is a grasp, as well as perception. Witnessing Brahman would be a grasp, but something distinct from knowledge and perception. [6] Unknown objects are not necessarily ungraspable, just as atoms were not always known. Atoms were always possibly graspable. The issue is proposing that a theoretical, yet-to-be-demonstrated object that cannot ever be grasped. [7]The prefix super- is used to convey that the composition is a composition at or above the level of entity. A supercomposition is not a special form of composition with unique attributes. [8] Time is itself a relation between two actions, so a time which lacks a coinciding action is no time at all. Furthermore, a causal-free point in time implies regions of reality which lack causality. In both ways, the absolute end to any causal chain would be an absolute end to the universe, or at least the universe would be in a frozen state. I’d argue that a frozen state is identical to nothingness, i.e. is nonexistence. [9] Latin - (with genitive, or ablative in later Latin) full (of), filled, plump; https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/plenus#Latin [10] Latin - perpetual, continuous, uninterrupted; https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/perpetuus#Latin
  5. This sounds like provoking controversy. That's fine, but saying "willfully dishonest" is pretty annoying. You can ask where I get such an idea (and I would tell you). A better way to spark conversation would be something like "that psychotic break was absolutely necessary to push his thinking to the limits". I say this because I know for a fact that you like to provoke controversy, you said so on a thread one time. He said he derived many of his ideas from this time period (notice that I didn't say that he said he derived his ideas from a psychotic break; I said he derived his ideas from a time when he had something like a psychotic break) Take this from Wikipedia on the Red Book, in his own words: ""The years… when I pursued the inner images, were the most important time of my life. Everything else is to be derived from this. It began at that time, and the later details hardly matter anymore. My entire life consisted in elaborating what had burst forth from the unconscious and flooded me like an enigmatic stream and threatened to break me. That was the stuff and material for more than only one life. Everything later was merely the outer classification, scientific elaboration, and the integration into life. But the numinous beginning, which contained everything, was then." This is why I'm asking you where you got your information. I asked if it was Jordan Peterson, because I know he is largely a Jungian, but basically does not try to address any of Jung's explicit irrationalities. From a counseling perspective, this is fine. After all, Jung used his ideas as a method of helping people through various struggles by interpreting or gaining inspiration from many subjective experiences such as dreams. This is the same way we can gain inspiration from mythology, literature, art, and so on - it doesn't require any particular scientific or empirical evaluation. But when we look at the justifications Jung used, it doesn't add up into some rational theory of overcoming struggles and psychological issues. But anyway, his psychotic issue doesn't itself diminish anything that came after. It takes a lot to go through something like that, and a lot of thinking to come out the other end without completely collapsing. What counts is what you do after. You could take a rational angle to all of that, talking about how it inspires creativity, greater openness to experience, the confusion that comes in personality, and how we all need some personal means of comprehending the situation (which fits in with a Nietzschean perspective that Jung had in part). But he also used those experiences as themselves evidence of his ideas. In other words, he used his emotions as a means of cognition. I'm not saying all of his ideas were that way, but the essence of his theories came from there. As much as his Red Book was private, it was his personal private notebook to develop his ideas. I have notebooks that I don't share for my scientific research because honestly it wouldn't make sense to much people. I might even record dreams just because of how that can inspire more ideas. Still, I wouldn't claim that my ideas are verified or are founded on my dreams (or psychotic break, or other strange experiences, if that did happen). I don't doubt he was productive. Well, that's debatable. Productive at what? He wrote books - towards the end of subjective theories. In this sense, he was not productive at all for the development of psychology. But he was productive for the development of psychoanalysis, which I'd say detracted from progress in psychology. If you still think I'm off base, then let's stop talking about his biography. Explain to me what is rational about any of these things (we can argue about if he is overall rational or mystical, but I'm looking for at least one example of a rational theory of his) Collective unconscious shadow archetype Animus/anima synchronicity archetypes in general individuation I'd rather pick one to focus on for now. (I'm going to split the thread sometime today, I just need some time to do so)
  6. Seriously, he derived some ideas from when he had some kind of psychotic break. That's not simply an accusation on my part - read about his process of writing his Red Book. That's anything but the "rational brain". The heart part isn't even an odd metaphor, because a lot of what Jung got came from feeling and intuition, not any kind of scientific study or even rational study. I don't mean to say that that's where his inspiration came from, I'm saying that he formed his ideas with those as foundation. If you want to define mysticism as "turning off your brain", virtually no one is a mystic. But I think it's clear that's not what Ilya means. You need reason to form a coherent sentence, but it doesn't follow that Jung was not a mystic because he could link ideas. It's the content of those ideas and what he counts as evidence that makes him a mystic. That doesn't mean his ideas are worthless, or that you should necessarily ignore his ideas. You can find inspiration from zany ideas without using them as a foundation. I find Jung's intuitions and mystical ideas interesting, and they do inspire ideas in me of what to investigate about psychology, but none of his ideas are a good -foundation- to understanding anything about psychology. Basically, I don't know where you're getting your information. Was it Jordan Peterson? The important thing to point out is that Jung was not a psychologist. He was a psychoanalyst. What do you mean? Emotions can also result from irrational thought. That's part of why emotion is not a means of cognition. "Mysticism is an emotional way of connecting your soul with the reality outside" basically means using emotion as a means of cognition. That's what Jung did. That's how Rand described mysticism, at least of her "witchdoctor" variety. It's a fitting metaphor for a psychoanalyst like Jung.
  7. Dreams aren't mysticism, but trying to extract some underlying meaning of dreams through the concept of the collective unconscious is. The collective unconscious is not a metaphor for common ideas. It's straight up a claim about an unconscious mind, which is probably the closest thing to modern mysticism that there is. This is nothing like the claim of tabula rasa, which doesn't try to claim additional (supernatural) structures of the mind. It's strictly a claim about acquiring knowledge, without speculating of how this is precisely. Alchemy is a precursor to science, in a sense, but in the early 20th century, people still new better. In the days of Jung in his youth, there was at least 50 years of good psychological research available already. Source not like it was merely an error of Jung the claim is such thing as the collective unconscious. Psychologists like James already set the groundwork of good empirical psychology. German psychologists did as well. Psychoanalysis is more his field than psychology. In fact, I'm claiming that psychoanalysis is Western mysticism. It dresses itself up in science, but it gets pulled further into mystical practices through its notions of interpretation. You're right about the unus mundus, not the best choice of example. But I still stand by the concept of "persona" being mystical, as well as his other ideas about personality. I'm not aware he based this on any observations or interactions with the world, and in fact formed some theories from mystical experience (or perhaps psychosis as he wrote about in his Red Book).
  8. But he is a mystic, regardless of his denial. Are you familiar with Jung at all? I mean, his theories of personality are based on dreams, alchemy, collective unconscious... Ilya is right. If you want to provoke controversy, say the unus mundus is grounded in reality in the Objectivist sense. That'd be interesting, and also on topic.
  9. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    Not really, but when you say things that are wrong, and fill your posts with that, you can't expect people to ignore it. For the purpose of discussion, you can't just throw up your hands and say "well I never was very interested in that anyway!" To do that is to attempt to say the facts don't really matter, all that really matters is that how you feel (or think) about the words in front of you is more important. Kind of like saying "since I feel that IQ is closely tied to genetics, just the way height is, then since height doesn't absolutely determine where I end up in life, then neither does IQ!" But then when people talk in depth about the genetics, they are trying to show you how "genes cause IQ" was actually based on faulty reasoning, and the very jumping off point that people like Azrael use as a basis for racist political philosophy (e.g., government policies based on race). This isn't the empiricist error; you've been fooled to think that understanding these facts doesn't explain why Western society today tries to instill identity politics and think so much about the "guilt" that various races have. Some might say that by understanding IQ, we can come to see that SES or racism explains the true reason for IQ differences. Others might say that by properly understanding IQ, we can come to see that there are inherent inferiority is among races. I would say that by understanding IQ, we can come to see that the differences are really pointless because the construct is not built well at all. No, it's not that facts disturb. It's that people fail to understand facts, interpret it according to their narrative, and then act like the people who don't fail to understand the facts are the ones who don't understand the facts. People might do this because it's difficult to truly understand something complicated. Or they only take pieces of it, attempt to integrate it. In a sense, it's mis-integration. Parts are forced together into a deformed jigsaw puzzle. So that's why I said stream of consciousness. There are disparate thoughts. They are superficially related. I don't mind if you say the understanding in depth isn't worth your time entirely, or beyond your study. You don't need faulty facts or imprecise understanding of scientific literature to participate. You can let it be. Offer what you can, and update your understanding as others respond to you. Change your mind and all that, not a big deal. But rational discussion starts to break down when you introduce incorrect ideas and act like they are minor and not what you really wanted to talk about.
  10. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    I have no words. It just sounds like your posts are stream of consciousness at this point. If you still don't know what the fuss was about, and how you were part of that fuss, even after I and other people explained it, then there's nothing more to say.
  11. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    It was inaccurate because it failed to convey what you wanted apparently, and you tried to say two things were related in a way that they aren't actually related. We already talked about this.
  12. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    Still, everything you wrote was in support of the idea that race is a causal factor of IQ. It's not a semantic stumbling block. I don't know how to put it, other than you don't really know what you're talking about. Inaccurate analogies, fast and loose use of the words causal and biological, confusing the discussion between correlation and causation. I don't expect you to be an expert, but I don't think you're even listening. You can't talk about why IQ is abused as a construct until you can get the science right. I keep repeating this. No one in this thread disputed that a correlation exists.
  13. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    I hope that you changed your mind in the process of discussion, because you definitely said that. Here are some quotes from you, that say this and are examples that used to support that idea. Here are some quotes from you from various posts in this thread: "IQ, like everything biological in animals and the rational animal, has to have emerged from somewhere and something - i.e., our parents' and forefathers' DNA. Like the range of ~inessential~ attributes which one may superficially apply to mankind - physicality, gender, size, color, features (etc.), they have to be considered "metaphysically given". Finally, that there is a racial, ethnic component to IQ shouldn't be surprising for anyone, when viewed amongst all the other physical properties which individuals of different races inherit. the *many* variants within the narrow, possible, human range which an individual possesses was inherited via his DNA, why not also the "capacity" of his physical brain? If his DNA was passed onto him, from where did it come? (Originally, very far back - when mankind lived scattered in isolated groups). What is the innate capacity of a brain, but a biological inheritance - like every biological property? To not admit to the slight influence ethnic-IQ has, surrenders the subject solidly into the hands a). of race supremacists, or b). of egalitarians, who want all men forced to be equal. Both to be rejected outright for what they'd perpetrate, unopposed. Eiuol, no "good science" that this is a causal factor? Only overwhelming science, tried and tested." Only a few posts before my last one, you yourself said causal factor. You could perhaps say genetics are minimally causal in terms of specific genes, but certainly not anything like "race causes IQ". This line here is an argument about causality. Not just a correlation with genes! It was an example of how causal genetic differences (e.g., lung function) manifest in performance differences. So I told you the analogy didn't work because IQ is simply not a biological measurement in the first place.
  14. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    Because that's what you were talking about when you were defending Watson, so I kept trying to correct you that most scientists don't talk about that (Watson, in contrast, specifically talked about race causing IQ differences). Nicky did as well basically. You called IQ biological, you claimed IQ can be caused by genetics, you gave examples of how race can be causal. You were trying to argue against me, even when I said that the discussion wasn't about just a correlation. And you kept going. I don't think you even realize what you've been arguing. Of course it doesn't follow, that's why I said it was wrong. "Differences as related to race" doesn't mean "differences caused by race". That's all. The first one includes correlations for the most part, the second one includes causation.
  15. Eiuol

    Universals

    I get the idea, and I agree with what you said about AI. But I'm wary of saying that "sufficiently complex" has really much meaning except for one necessary condition for consciousness to be present. I definitely don't want to say that it causes consciousness. In some sense it does, as an efficient cause, in the sense that complex parts go together and create a data processor of the sort that consciousness appears. It's more or less an association you make. The way of describing how things happen in your day-to-day. But it doesn't really get at a formal cause, the theory of why things are occurring. For something fundamental as our own consciousness (consciousness does not exist in pieces), I don't think were going to have a formal cause. It just is. Someone someday will probably be able to produce consciousness definitively in a robot or something. But I don't think that will involve the discovery of why consciousness is happening.
  16. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    I wanted to point this out. This is emphatically not the Objectivist position. People told you before I think. The idea is that man by nature has a rational capacity. Man ought to use this capacity because it is his means of survival. No one is rational by default - rationality is a chosen and purposeful thing. This is partly why we don't say selfishness or tribalism is part of human nature. There are a myriad of ways we can act and a myriad of standards. In terms of political standards, we take fallibility into account, including that people might be tribal, or might be selfish, or something else entirely.
  17. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    I wasn't talking about those things. I'm not even saying you have a hidden agenda. I'm saying that you seem unwilling "go that way" for purposes of discussion. I'm not going to guess why. You said "I don't think we ought to go", apparently "going to" that topic is wrong. But the only way we can actually talk about the implications I suppose that there are, we need to engage those more extreme positions in order to find if your position actually has some line that doesn't lead to an implication of using the government to segregate people. After all, you've been saying that things like lowering the average IQ is threatening; that social harmony underlies rights; that some form of utilitarianism is correct. (By the way, I understand that people have preferences, and I can see these preferences as immoral, but I certainly would permit them as far as legality. But none of that is based on the need of social harmony first. I would argue that even private segregation is not freedom, but a self-limitation that detracts from the health of a society.) If we don't have to visit these topics "in real life if we correctly account for human nature", then we fail to engage what certain beliefs entail. And what if correctly accounting for human nature actually calls for government enforced segregation? Perhaps things more severe than that? Besides, the only place I wanted you "to go" was talk about government enforced segregation. Your beliefs do not seem consistent with that. I think that's because you're maintaining a contradiction somewhere. Not only that, if correctly accounting for human nature instead means social harmony, and you're sure about that, then you certainly want to fix up your beliefs if they entail something incorrect or against that goal. So let's go back to that real-life example. Let's talk about Japanese internment. You haven't directly said that this was wrong. But by your beliefs, is it wrong?
  18. Eiuol

    Universals

    I'm replying here since I know he won't respond in this way. It does seem like this is his view, but that's because he keeps using the word mental. He doesn't mean that everything has a mental characteristic. He means that everything has a Form of some sort, and this Form exists in a metaphysical sense, not an epistemological sense as we mean by the Objectivist position. It's Platonic realism we're talking about here. I think this is confirming the point actually. I don't agree with the conclusion from the statement, but the statement makes sense. If we assert that there must be some extra cause as to why things must combine in a certain way, or we expect there to be some specific law or rule of why things must combine in a certain way, it would seem that if you say "that's just how it is", you're basically saying "it's magic". But this is not true. Combining certain neurons doesn't "create" consciousness. It kind of just happens. Really, I think this is another way of thinking about the axiom that you're conscious. You might be able to explain how neurons work when you're conscious, or the neurotransmitters that move around, or the computational processes underlying perception, but you won't be explaining why it has to be this way. You won't be explaining why it emerges, only that it has emerged. So, it is inexplicable, in the sense that there is no deeper meaning or explanation. For example, it's inexplicable why the law of identity is true - it just is. If there is something underlying it, you are saying it can be reduced. This would lead to being a reductionist in terms of consciousness, which is wrong. We can have an explanation in terms of metaphysics, sure, but as we know about anything truly axiomatic, you can't "prove" it is true. I disagree though that this implies the existence of Forms in a metaphysical sense. Still, the point about "fundamentally inexplicable" is rational and sensible.
  19. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    Those aren't outliers, those are just the ends of the distribution. Outliers are outside the distribution so far that they can't really be considered part of the sample. An example of shifting the mean in the sense I mean would be to include outliers in the blue line group, which would then make it look like the yellow line (roughly speaking, it's more like it would reach out further). If we are comparing Ashkenazi Jews to the population on average, we are basically "zooming in" on the people in the blue group, if the blue group represents the American population. We'd be asking "does this group follow a different pattern than the pattern we would expect in the entire population?". When you focus on Ashkenazi Jews, you find significant differences - it is unlikely they are from the same population as the blue group (the type of status we are talking about always start with the assumption that groups follow the same patterns). This just means that Ashkenazi Jews don't follow the pattern we would expect. This would in turn means that people further onto the edge of the yellow line are even further over than the blue line. But this doesn't mean that the small statistical differences result in overwhelming differences. If there are small differences in one part, they are small differences in another part. It means that more people in the yellow group are at the higher end of the blue group, if the blue group is our standard of measurement. I'm saying all this to help your thinking about it. It's important to distinguish I think when simply more people are on the higher side of the population distribution, or when including outliers in a sample of the population distorts the results. But I also asked Nicky what he meant, since the wording was unclear and unintentionally misleading to the rest of his point. And actually, the more we talk about statistics, the more you can see there are problems when the people you measure are very different from everyone else. In that sense, the differences become overwhelming to an individual - the more "out there" you are, the more you are set apart from the people you're compared to. But it's not that the small significant differences can eventually make for an even more significant difference.
  20. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    I don't quite understand. Do you mean the outliers being included in the population "shifts" the mean? Or do you mean that the statistical difference in the sample, Ashkenazi Jews in this case, IQ is slightly shifted higher for Ashkenazi Jews, which in turn makes the individuals higher in the distribution that much further away from the population mean? I know that's a mouthful. I think the clarification matters though.
  21. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    See, this comes across as lazy on your part. As I said, the evidence you are thinking of probably doesn't mean what you think it means. "Do a search" is not how discussing science works. When you do a search, there are so many things you can find, and there is so much you can find that you can misunderstand. When you say I'm rejecting mainstream discoveries, you refuse to mention any such discoveries that I'm rejecting. I can't bring up contradictory literature until I even know the literature you've read. I'm telling you, there is no research that supports the idea that race is a causal factor of IQ. If you think you found it, either its bad science (as in, the research was done poorly with poor standards), or didn't demonstrate any causal interaction. You seem to think that because IQ differences have been discovered as related to race means that this is evidence that race causes IQ differences. Instead of being so adversarial, just cite something. Great, then let's talk about your specific objections. That means mentioning specific things you read. Part of the reason to discuss these things is that you can return to previously integrated concepts, unpack them, and go over it again. "Don't need returning to" is never true. Science makes progress when people return to things. Same goes for your knowledge - you can become wiser when you return to things again. I don't know what your point is. And the evidence you are asking me for, please read the thread from the start. Some of my earlier posts do this already.
  22. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    I think the difference is more about how he thinks knowledge and meaning is formed. He has a lot to say about narratives and things like that. He approaches philosophy more like the way Jung and Freud did.
  23. Eiuol

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    You were repeatedly asked to provide evidence, mention some studies, but you never did. If someone claims there is no evidence, but you claim there is, all you have to do is cite one study. You say there is overwhelming science, so it shouldn't be hard to back up your claim. I'm actually guessing that the evidence you are thinking of doesn't mean what you think it means. Just because you read a study doesn't mean you understood it. Where did anyone suggest that differences existing is bad or has bad implications? I told you already, the discussion isn't about IQ differences alone. It's about why these differences exist. No one disputed that differences exist. Who was offended at there being differences? Your experiences, whatever they may be, can't tell us whether race is a cause of IQ differences. You would need to do research across many different populations. South Africa isn't a very great country to figure this out, or the rest of Africa for that matter. There are so many confounds that your observations just aren't good enough. If anything, it's interesting to point out that the people saying race isn't a causal factor are American; our experiences are not like yours. For a subject like this, personal experiences won't tell much. Basically, intuition is required to make the conclusions you are making. It may seem like you used induction, but that doesn't mean you did it successfully. I'm not trying to argue against you as much as I am trying to show you that you don't know as much as you think you do about the subject.
  24. What more is there to say? Based on this, it would mean that the more time you spent together, the more friction there was between you. So naturally, you wouldn't progress to anything more. The only reason I could imagine you would try again is if your personality changed substantially since then.
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