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  1. Today
  2. In the absence of any EVIDENCE there is NO legitimacy to use of force. You could not justify attacking hundreds of businesses in tens of cities scattered thousands of miles apart even if you KNEW one of them DID contribute to the act (but did not know which one), but to try to justify an attack on hundreds of businesses in tens of cities scattered thousands of miles apart because you suspect that one of those businesses "might" have contributed, is laughable. Recall, you cannot get to "might" without "some" no matter how small, actual concrete evidence. Mere armchair speculation and leftist spun conspiracy theories do not count for anything. Businesses do not collectively conspire to harm some poor person in another state, nor do they collectively conspire to initiate harm against anyone, no matter what the leftist Marxist academia or media might want you to believe. Individual businesses and organizations do the best to pursue their own bottom line, or government mandate whatever the case may be. I am confident that 99% of the victims ARE innocent and that unjust initiation of harm is being visited upon their property, businesses, and their very livelihoods. I hope you never have your business ransacked for nothing you were responsible for. When enough people like you can justify witch hunts of the innocent and indiscriminate violence against them by the angry mob, the State itself will begin to appear to the public as justified in its witch hunts and indiscriminate violence through the general populace. Equal justice for all... BE careful of the Justice you advocate for lest you find yourself on the wrong side of some flawed system you helped create.
  3. This is at the core of the issue. If one sees NO evidence at all, i.e. no connection at all. What you are describing is something with little legitimacy and perhaps there is a threshold. But saying there is NO connection, no, none, zero is not true.
  4. Just because the members of an organization or institution break the rules of that institution does not mean that the institution is free of all responsibility. An institution organization is responsible for the actions of its members, even when the members violate the rules of that organization. This isn't some strange and unique legal principle. For example, consider that an oil company would have rules against drinking on the job if you captained an oil tanker. Then imagine that someone really was drinking on the job, crashed into the shoreline, and spilled millions of gallons of oil into the water and all the property around it. The oil company would be liable. If everyone whose property was damaged sued the oil company, and won, you wouldn't then say that the trial was a sham, that only the drunken captain should pay damages for initiating force (causing property damage). Clearly, when under rational scrutiny, the "group of people" did not initiate the act, only the one individual performing the initiation of force. But the corporation is still responsible, no matter how many rules they have against drinking on the job and spilling oil! Honestly, it's very strange that when people disagree with you (2046 in this case), I have often seen you insinuate that people have an ulterior motive, or you use passive aggression with backhanded compliments ("the sage philosopher"). The conversation will be more interesting if you stop doing that and show a little more respect. Or if you have nothing nice to say, don't say anything at all. I think this is a good point. If justice matters, as it should, there needs to be justified retaliation. But in what ways are different police precincts responsible? Who should be retaliated against? Is it enough to simply charge one man with manslaughter or murder? It's certainly not a good idea to deny that responsibility extends beyond this one officer.
  5. NOPE None of those businesses or institutions victimized throughout the US contributed to the specific act(s) of harm against Mr. Floyd. The initiation of harm was perpetrated by the officer(s) alone. Nor is there any reasonable level of evidence showing that there is any truth to an assertion to the contrary that would rise to a level justifying use of ANY force against them. Find a document showing some business funded "The Foundation for Angry Racists Who Want to Become Cops to Hurt Black People" and another showing these officer(s) were funded under that program, then maybe you could begin to argue there is some legitimacy for acting against that particular business, but in the absence of ANY evidence you cannot support ANY legitimacy for the acts of force we are seeing perpetrated. Your attempt at guilt by association or inaction or whatever other anti-conceptual anti-causal notion you might be invoking... simply holds no water. Guilt must be shown by objective evidence causally linking the specific person to the crime. In the absence of ANY evidence linking anyone other than those officer(s)... ALL others are innocent.
  6. I have to digress first: The situation cannot ONLY be described in terms of retaliation, as some of it is random and illegitimate simply blowing off steam. Some are people trying to find something to express their frustration with. Young men being bored, people being upset at losing their jobs and wondering about their future. Aggression will go up. So to prevent it, other pressures have to be alleviated too. Having said that, back to the current thread: If this violent activity is reduced to the premise that "this is only justified if it were retaliating against the officer who was on Floyds neck", then this is not retaliation. But ... that would imply that retaliation is only justified against the necessary and sufficient cause (which can't be true). Amount of legitimacy in retaliation is based on destroying a proximate cause (anything that supports the existence of (the harm/damage/effect)). To defend yourself against a larger assailant you have a right to hit them where you can, not only the hand that contains the weapon. And yes, the closer to the necessary cause, the more legitimate the retaliation. A proximate cause could be the "supporting police", or the employing police station, or the state that has the police force, or the nation or society that finances it. Now, if these people went to Senegal/Africa and brunt their police cars, they had nothing to do with the Floyd Killing. That would be retaliation that was absolutely and objectively illegitimate (zero amount of Legitimacy). What is going on in cities in the US has "some" legitimacy as retaliation. Therefore it "eventually" requires and deserves some sort of non violent alleviation. The areas where it had zero legitimacy it deserves aggressive retaliation by the government.
  7. The sage philosopher, carefully ignoring the fact that organizations (groups of people) have rules which individuals are asked to follow in order to properly act on behalf of and for that group of people. Carefully ignoring that when a person acts outside of those rules of the group he is not actually acting on behalf of or at the behest of that group of people, in fact, that person is acting to betray that group of people Of course in the particular context of corporations and businesses, vicarious liability and other laws come into effect to protect wronged customers, and that is a nice straw man there. It might fool some of your targets. But that does not mean that under any rational scrutiny the "group of people" can be seen to have performed or initiated the acts (acts which they themselves have rules against) when the individual performed them. The sage one has carefully used the straw man of corporate law and consumer protections to deflect from the fact that initiation of force is not a concept subject to whims or blameworthiness by proxy, it has specific individuals as its victims and specific individuals as its perpetrators.
  8. This is probably the more important thing to think about. Whether or not burning down a police station in Minneapolis is retaliatory won't change the fact that such force wasn't proportional. What counts is that retaliation is even a question here. The behavior of law enforcement in recent history, in the past 50 years, suggest that there are problems with the very use of cops. Police have not always existed, it is not as if ancient Rome had police on patrol that would patrol neighborhoods. We certainly want law enforcement, yet abuse of power seems to be a constant issue for police. Perhaps it is related to being granted legal privilege to a huge host of tools of violence. That is bound to have psychological effects in a similar manner that affect people who work for authoritarian governments. Not that police in the US are part of an authoritarian government, but that being a police officer puts one under constant pressure of enforcing bad laws, and the fact that some laws incidentally protect police officers when they do wrong. The entire institution of police is problematic. But it is still important to analyze what exactly people responding to. If people are retaliating, even if that specific method of retaliation is immoral, it's for a reason.
  9. "Retaliatory force" is generally used to identify legitimate use of force in retaliation to the initiation of force. This is to be distinguished from the broader concept of "force used in retaliation" which includes uses of force which are not legitimate, including vigilantism, and initiation of force masquerading as retaliation. Legitimate use of "retaliatory force" of government power is proper because it is delegable, ab initio, the "right of retaliation" must first exist, and only in the victim, prior to its delegation to, law enforcement, judges etc. in a proper society. In cases where the victim dies things shift a bit because the government's proper role is only to protect individual rights... and the dead cannot be protected... but since the acts took place while the victim was alive I suppose the right of retaliation has already been delegated... certainly considerations such as safety and deterrence are paramount. I do not dispute that illegitimate use of force by anyone can be used in retaliation i.e. in answer to some action, but that alone does not make it "retaliatory force" in the legitimate use of the term when speaking of victims of the initiation of harm or a proper government acting on delegated authority. This comes close to a straw man. In the context, "Retaliatory force" (properly) is legitimate because it is only in answer to the initiation of force, and is visited only upon those who initiated that harm and should be carried out according to objective standards. By equivocating a little about whether the institution was at root to "blame" versus actually being the initiator of force, allows one to legitimize initiation of force against that institution under the cover of "retaliatory force". If the "blame game" gets wide enough, all kinds of entities, which are the "root causes" will be "legimate" targets of violence because.. well it is after all "retaliatory force". The institution did not initiate the force, individuals did so and outside of their proper authority. Had the police rulebook or training said "keep your knee on the suspect's neck until they stop moving" then we would have a much better case for the argument that the institution itself IS in part the initiator of the force. This is not a question of evading the causes of the behavior we are seeing, clearly this kind of thinking in people is truly happening. I am not here to ponder why persons arrive at flawed conclusions, but to discuss how and why we can and should arrive at the correct ones.
  10. You didn't give an explanation to the parts that needed explaining. If you can't make it any simpler, you oversimplified it.
  11. The police acting in response to the initiation of force on behalf of the victim is legitimate because it is delegated retaliation, used in an objective manner, according to objective principles of law. The government's proper role is to protect individual rights and insure those rights are protected according to objective rules, that is why a proper government has a monopoly on the use of force outside of emergency circumstances (where for example the police cannot arrive in time). You raise an interesting point about whether a dead person can delegate the use of retaliatory force according to a government using objective standards. I do not believe that it can be a fact that a dead person can have "rights" that need to be protected. Personally, I tend to see apprehension of suspected murderers more along the lines with pre-emptory self-defense of the citizens at large, who are still alive, from an imminent threat. This still however requires a reasonable standard of evidence prior to an arrest of that suspect. There is a conceptual possibility that the right to retaliation was already delegated and remains with the government after the victim's passing. Retaliatory force's legitimacy is rooted in the basis of all government action, the protection of individual rights, and keeping that use bound to objective standards. Once a victim is dead, the rights at issue when any action is taken by government are everyone else's. Prevention of re-offence by the particular person, and deterrence of similar actions by others are main reasons to pursue suspected murders. The government's proper role does not include retribution or revenge on behalf of the departed, no matter how much they would have been emotionally satisfied by it, were they still alive. You allege "plenty" of laws protect the police who initiate the use of force. Whether or not this is true, to the extent those laws do so they are invalid. Most laws in the tradition of western democracies, guard against the abuse of power by authorities and the police, just cause, innocent until proven guilty etc. I have never claimed the system was perfect, but the basic function of the police's core institutional function IS to fight crime, protect the citizens, and uphold the law rather than to perpetrate crimes, is clear.
  12. I go to Ford to purchase a new car. I buy a car with all the latest features, but I get home and the car is missing some features. I go back to the Ford dealer and summoning my best Karen, I ask to speak to the manager. I bought the package with all these features, but my car doesn't have these features, I say. Ah, but you bought the car from StrictlyLogical and Merjet. They were your salesmen. And they're not here. They're gone. Sorry, you're out of luck. And they won't be in tomorrow, or the next day. In fact, they're saying home and we're shielding them. And you can't get reimbursed from Ford because, see, you only have the right to get reimbursement from those who sold you the car. No such entity "Ford" sold you the car, see? SL and MJ sold you the car. And you will never see them again. Now begone! If I were to do some cliche Randian analysis, beyond just peppering every other sentence with boilerplate jargon like "objective" this and "metaphysical" that, would probably conclude that this is the "concrete-bound" mentality. I would probably conclude that it is the refusal to abstract. And the reason for that is because organisations and institutions are groups of people, and these various people are representatives of the organization. And they know that, they're just being an insufferable pedantic.
  13. Regarding "retaliation" Ayn Rand wrote: "Men have the right to use physical force only in retaliation and only against those who initiate its use" (Lexicon). So violence against a Minneapolis police officer who was not on the scene of the George Floyd incident would not qualify as "retaliation" in her view.
  14. Not to agree or disagree more broadly about this particular act of mob violence, but you're looking at "retaliation" wrong here. The thing that makes for retaliation is not that it is the individual who has had force used against them, replying in kind. If you look at the most widely agreed-upon uses of "retaliatory force" -- namely, law enforcement itself, I think this should be plain to see: When the judge sentences a murderer to jail, that judge was not necessarily there at the time of the attack; neither he, nor the arresting officer, nor the jailer, have been themselves attacked. Yet their use of force is retaliatory. I think it's arguable at the least that police training and culture have contributed to these sorts of outcomes; that there are "systemic" and "institutional" problems manifesting themselves, beyond the mere choices of one (or four) bad actors. I agree with you that what the protestors did in setting fire to the police station is wrong (and of course, illegal). Whether or not it was "retaliatory" in nature is less clear to me. Things are complex in modern society. Given that there are laws which, themselves, initiate the use of force against the innocent, and given that the police routinely enforce those laws, it has long been unclear to me as to how one assesses that morally. I don't think carte blanche resistance or retaliation is moral, but at the same time, I don't think it's right for a police officer to kneel on someone's neck for minutes at a time, let alone in the circumstances in the Floyd video. If I saw an officer treating a loved one in such a fashion, I would fight back. There are further problems in our culture that have deep roots and are subtle and insidious, and though "racism" has become such a fraught term, and often employed unjustly, it has to be remembered that racism does exist and has had a powerful influence on our country's history. I understand why people could look at a video like that and see it in that context, and come to consider the police "the enemy."
  15. Are you suggesting that a police (C) arresting murderer (B) who killed victim (A) is an initiation of force? Clearly C was NOT there in the act of B against A, C was never attacked, and hence any use of force by C could not be retaliatory? You don't need to be personally victimized to use retaliatory force, especially when the victim is dead and could not possibly retaliate. The problem here is that the retaliatory force was carried out by a mindless mob, not the fact that retaliatory force was carried out at all, on somebody else's behalf, which is perfectly valid. Nope. Plenty of laws protect police who initiate the use of force. They're not acting independently of the police institution. (Of course, you could be arguing about some abstract, perfect police station that works this way, but this case is very specific).
  16. I cannot make it any simpler for you. I’m sorry but if you can’t understand the issues after my explanation, you just don’t get it. I hope others get something from it so it’s not a complete waste of my time. Good luck!
  17. Why do you keep saying that? That phrase is for essay writing, not conversations. What do you think a disagreement is? You think my premises are wrong. You didn't finish your line of reasoning. Note that I'm not using passive aggression to call you a moron. Thinking on a moron doesn't help your case when I already said I'm undecided if torching a police station was justified. Why insult me? Yes, the actions were unlawful, at least in the sense that attacking a police station is always against the law. But I don't think that's what you mean. If you mean unlawful only in the sense of initiation of force which is not retaliatory, that's not necessarily true. The whole point of you even responding to me is that you think it is initiation of force, and I think it is retaliatory (by being retaliatory, it still isn't necessarily justified). A police precinct is responsible for its officers. I clarified earlier that I was only referring to Minneapolis. In the same way the actions of one soldier justify actions against that soldier's army, the actions of one officer justify actions against that officer's precinct. In other words, initiation of force done by one officer means that force in response would be retaliatory. Acting outside of your authority isn't initiation of force, I don't know what you're talking about. This is true as far as a precinct in Atlanta, for example. Police departments across the country are not unified institutions across the board. Officers in Atlanta are not responsible for officers in Minneapolis.
  18. Has anyone seen an objective piece of proper journalism reporting about the George Floyd incident and aftermath? If so please include a link in your reply. I'm really interested to see if ANY journalists or media outlets in modern times are capable of objective, non-editorializing, non-opinionated, non-spin infested, reporting of the facts and issues and yes that includes objective reporting of the so-called "positions" or sentiments of various players involved. I'm wondering is there ANY media outlet that reports the news to consumers who want to know what's happening and want to make-up their own minds, instead of setting out to virtue signal, lecture, preach, and try to change public sentiment in the dumb masses (as they see them).
  19. Check your premises. What IS retaliatory force? Of course setting police stations on fire is force, no question. But IS it retaliatory? NO. The mob is made up of individuals who were NOT there, and in the act(s) of the officer(s) against Mr. Floyd, none of those mob individuals have been attacked, and hence any use of force by that mob could not be retaliatory. If the mob acted directly against the officer(s) who did act, it could not be in retaliation as they had never been attacked by those officer(s). Moreover, the mob is using force not against the individual officer(s) but against the police institution itself. A sharp mind can easily see that to the extent the acts of the officer(s) was unlawful, i.e. the initiation of force, they acted outside of their authority given by the police institution who employed them. So not only was the mob not acted upon, the police institution did not commit the acts that were not acted upon them. EVEN if Mr. Floyd did not die, were he to set fire on the police station it would NOT be retaliatory force. Here, non-victims of any force are attacking non-perpetrators of any force. This is the INITITATION of FORCE, and it is clearly illegal and immoral.
  20. Publications Ayn Rand Society Philosophical Studies (Currently in process, a volume on Aristotle and Rand) Darwinism 2. Darwin and Darwinism 2.1 Darwin’s Life 2.2 Darwin’s Darwinism 2.3 Philosophical Problems with Darwin’s Darwinism 3. The Five Core Philosophical Problems Today 3.1 The Roles of Chance in Evolutionary Theory 3.2 The Nature, Power and Scope of Selection 3.3 Selection, Adaptation and Teleology 3.4 Species and the Concept of ‘Species’
  21. Even with a break from the news, it has been impossible not to hear about the death of George Floyd and the protests that criminals and left-wing thugs have seen fit to turn into riots. It has also been impossible not to be disappointed with the responses to same from our elected officials. Most Democrats have predictably failed to stand up against the rioters when they haven't been encouraging them in one way or another. And then, just as predictably, we have had Donald Trump making intemperate and counterproductive comments such as, I believe, a call to shoot the looters. This is all against the usual tone-deafness of most Republicans to racial matters, which often loses ears before anything constructive they can say. And speaking of lost messages, Scott Adams correctly notes that Antifa and other violent actors are making many Americans much less likely to be sympathetic to legitimate concerns about police brutality that this death had brought into sharp focus. Likewise, Yaron Brook correctly notes that Republicans have themselves to blame for the fact that they do so poorly among minorities in most parts of the country. It was interesting hearing this as I drove right after Adams made a case for BLM (by which I take him to mean the cause of racial equality) being much more at home in the GOP (which he seems to take as an individualist political party). (Pro-tip for the odd Republican passer-by: This need not and should not be a pandering contest. There are votes of thinking people to be had for the taking. Now that I think of it, quit pandering to your current constituencies, too. Democrats are popular by default. Educating the public on a superior alternative could do wonders.) The short version of all this is that, until this morning, I hadn't seen or heard of an even remotely appropriate response by a politician. And then, via Hot Air, I saw a five minute speech by Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms of Atlanta. I'm not religious and I would probably disagree with her on many political issues, but let me thank her right now for naming so much of what is wrong with the rioting and, especially for condemning it. Her remarks are in the video embedded below. (Note: In case of trouble playing the video below, it may help to use the Google Chrome browser or view at Hot Air.) "This is chaos. A protest has purpose. When Dr. King was assassinated we didn't do this to our city," Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said. "If you want change in America, go and register to vote." https://t.co/1M9DJg6CSz pic.twitter.com/74p8sryX0D-- Cuomo Prime Time (@CuomoPrimeTime) May 30, 2020 I was further surprised to learn from the same post that Bottoms is being considered for Joe Biden's running mate. She is so far the only one who doesn't scare the bejeezus out of me and, after this, the only one who could get me to consider voting for Biden. (As bad as Trump is, this is saying something.) She may be inexperienced, but if Democrats want any chance of attracting non-leftist voters, or at least not scaring them off, I think she is the one to pick. -- CAV Updates Today: Added note on playing video of embedded tweet. Link to Original
  22. The current high emotion is due to political failure. Could be Covid, could be racism, could be other frustrations or fears, and in politics, perception and emotion are far more central to outcomes vs. the philosophical view, where reason takes center stage. One does not win political campaigns without influencing emotions of voters and a mob is not an entity with a faculty of reason. Where there is pent up anger, sometimes violence erupts. Philosophically it is usually wrong. Politically it is natural and expected. In times of high emotion, since the faculty of reason is diminished, the ethical thing to do is to either avoid discussion in times of high emotion, or to avoid high emotion at times of discussion. But right now, it is too late for prevention of violence. High emotion does not allow reason and opens the door to demagogues. (as an aside, Trump and Bannon are a masters of that). The only thing that can be done is either actively try to calm emotions or to wait for the storm to pass, to settle down, and then have the discussion.
  23. Yaron goes into that. I have set it up to play at that point
  24. This is becoming uncanny. 23 arrested at London Black Lives Matter protest after George Floyd demonstrators ‘assault police’ at US embassy Another bizarre comparison was a parallel drawn between the Apollo and Dionysus article written in '69 contrasting the rationality of the moon landing with the irrationality of Woodstock with the recent Space X launch and the (now world wide?) spreading rioting. Holding in mind the following: When you declare that men are irrational animals and propose to treat them as such, you define thereby your own character and can no longer claim the sanction of reason—as no advocate of contradictions can claim it. I have to ask: Are all individuals involved in governments and agencies and their branches of law enforcement irrational animals and actions to be be viewed with white-washed suspicion? Is it the protesters that are supposed to be providing a form of cover for rioters seeking to be wolves disguised in sheep's clothing here or the rioters seeking the 'politically correct' protesters to disguise their ulterior motives?
  25. You said it didn't make sense to you, so I'm explaining why somebody might become a looter. There are of course all the other factors that lead someone to make looting a consideration. Imagine you are a person who is completely apolitical and has committed petty crime before. You recognize that people are protesting the killing of Michael Brown. While you don't really have hope from political change, and don't think politics really makes a difference to anything that goes on in the world, you recognize that this is an opportune time to go beyond petty theft and start looting TVs from Target. Other people have burned down a police car a few blocks away. Seeing that, you realize that you might be able to do something extreme as well. If someone can burn down a police car, imagine what you could steal when the cops are busy! Normally you wouldn't attempt to loot an entire store, but today, there are new opportunities. Just to be clear though, I don't think anything could justify the looting. It's not even retaliatory. It's just opportunism. Nothing more than that. I don't really know which part you disagree about.
  26. Yesterday
  27. It is hypocrisy but what are you aiming at with the question? Hopefully you are not trying to justify looting because corporate welfare exists.
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