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Is objectivism consequentialist?

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25 minutes ago, gio said:

It's not the same context. Equality (or indifference to be precise) of action is not the same thing as equality between men.

A man and a man's actions are not the same context? It seems like you are separating the man from his actions in the moral realm. As if that which applies to a man's action does not apply to the man who is acting. 

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7 minutes ago, MisterSwig said:

A man and a man's actions are not the same context? It seems like you are separating the man from his actions in the moral realm. As if that which applies to a man's action does not apply to the man who is acting. 

You can say for example:
"The good is when women rules and men are slaves, in other words the good is inequality between men and women."
And in the same time:
"All means that leads to this result are equally acceptable."
In the first point, the context is a result, in the second point the context is action.

(No offense, but I find this discussion rather uninteresting and off-topic.)

Edited by gio

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7 hours ago, gio said:

It only means that the only principle they have is the wish for such consequence, if you prefer. Provided we can call that a principle.

Yes, but you seem to be assuming that they just settle on that consequence arbitrarily. I doubt they fell the same way. That's why I think this "consequentialist" is a mythical beast: a concept with zero referrents.

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I understood you gio.  Well done.

3 hours ago, softwareNerd said:

Yes, but you seem to be assuming that they just settle on that consequence arbitrarily. I doubt they fell the same way. That's why I think this "consequentialist" is a mythical beast: a concept with zero referrents.

The bolsheviks that ran Russia after 1917 had the ultimate consequence of socialism or communism in mind when they began their murderous purges.  I am not too familiar with actual Marxism but it always seems to be more bloody in practice than in theory.  That is because of the consequentialist morality of Marxists.  Religion of the medieval period and through Kant can be labelled as deontological, but the Spanish Inquisition seems to take a consequentialist turn.  Japanese Samurai are deontological.  American businessmen have been bottom-line driven consequentialists, which is just another way to describe pragmatism.  Utilitarianism is consequentalist. 

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9 hours ago, softwareNerd said:

Yes, but you seem to be assuming that they just settle on that consequence arbitrarily. I doubt they fell the same way. That's why I think this "consequentialist" is a mythical beast: a concept with zero referrents.

No, a consequentialist can come to the conclusion that such consequence is good in any way (reason, faith, feeling, desire ... it does not matter, it depends on the kind of consequentialist he is). But then, all means are good to reach this consequence.

Take Ludwig von Mises for example. The only reason he defends capitalism is because it happens to be the best system to get the more happiness of the masses. If it were socialism that produced this consequence, he would be an advocate of socialism. It only happens that socialism is impracticable, it does not "work" it's basically the only reason he rejects it. For him, the notion of individual right does not exist, it is a pure arbitrary convention, a useless concept.

Edited by gio

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Observe that if all the dictators are consequentialist (they use all the means and do not hesitate to sacrifice whole peoples to reach their goal), they stay in power only because they ask the population to adopt a deontological morality. They must do their duty, they must obey the leader, because he is the leader.

Hitler is consequentialist, but Eichman is Kantian.

Hitler thinks that the good is the domination of the Aryan race, and he will use every possible means to arrive at this consequence, even if it is to crush many people.

Eichman thinks that what is good is to obey Hitler because he is Hitler. If Hitler says to crush many people, let's do it. If tomorrow Hitler changes his mind, Eichman will always obey.

And without the Eichmans, no Hitler.

The conflict between Stalin and Trotsky was a battle between two consequentialists. In a totalitarian dictatorship, there must be one consequentist: the leader. All the others adopt a kind of deontological mode: obedience to the leader.

Of course, it's a bit schematic.

Edited by gio

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Just a minor note on Mises, he didn't think property rights were useless, he was a rule-utilitarian, and in so doing believed that property rights were useful rules for society to follow if you wanted peace, prosperity, social harmony, etc. But yes, this is predicated on his assumption that most people do, in fact, aim for peace and prosperity, not because there are any ultimate ends or natural rights. 

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6 hours ago, gio said:

Hitler thinks that the good is the domination of the Aryan race, and he will use every possible means to arrive at this consequence, even if it is to crush many people.

No.

Quote

 

The stronger must dominate and not blend with the weaker, thus sacrificing his own greatness. Only the born weakling can view this as cruel, but he after all is only a weak and limited man; for if this law did not prevail, any conceivable higher development of organic living beings would be unthinkable.

The consequence of this racial purity, universally valid in Nature, is not only the sharp outward delimitation of the various races, but their uniform character in themselves.

--Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

 

Dominating weaker races was a means to the consequence of the "uniform character" of the races, which he believed to be what Nature intended. So he also didn't believe that all means to this end were equal. He acted in accord with his understanding of Natural Law, which is what all principled racists did back then.

The problem with "consequentialism" is that it erodes one's interest in causality. It orientates the mind toward some imagined purpose, rather than the actual beliefs and actions of a man.

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Okay, my bad. Then let's say Hitler wasn't consequentialist.
But what he made looks like.

Edited by gio

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