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Doug Morris

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Doug Morris last won the day on April 7 2019

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  1. When one enters into a contract, one incurs an obligation to abide by it, and to incur any appropriate penalties for failing to do so, even in the face of the unexpected. Every choice we make and every action we take involves a risk of the unexpected; we just have to live our lives as best we can in the face of this. It is in the interests of both B and S to operate under a system that includes sound, objective laws and well-functioning courts to resolve unexpected disputes.
  2. To me, "deserve" is a vague word. Deserving something is not necessarily the same as being entitled to it. If someone knowingly and deliberately markets food contaminated with salmonella, and thereby causes many illnesses and some deaths, he might deserve cruel and unusual punishment. But does that mean we should mete it out to him?
  3. Computers, by clever programming and massive computing power, can perform specific tasks that used to require intelligence, such as playing chess or go, recognizing faces, speech, or other patterns, or mapping out a route for a trip. This is what I meant above when I said we have a lot of artificial intelligence already. All this is very different from computers possessing the faculty of reason, or even simply being conscious.
  4. If artificial intelligence is something that is not actually intelligence but merely imitates intelligence, we have a lot of that already. If someone eventually develops a computer system that is conscious and has the faculty of reason, I would call that synthetic intelligence, not artificial.
  5. How well do the 33% who said it was human understand the faculty of reason?
  6. Should we regard moral principles as having authority? Or should we regard them as tools for living a good human life?
  7. 5) At least one of them made an error of knowledge.
  8. The biggest reason I haven't posted for a while is that I've been spending most of my time at another house, and I haven't been able to sign on from that computer. Something blanks out my ID and password as though I hadn't entered anything, and it does not give me any error message. Here I brought up the site on my normal computer, and it came up with me already signed on.
  9. I'm talking about taking an opportunity to do something. A time has come along to make a radical change. People should take that opportunity. It sounds to me like you are afraid somebody else wants to make good out of an otherwise bad situation, while you don't have a plan to do anything at all different than usual. I don't know how much we can accomplish politically in this crisis, since there is very little political support for the needed kind of reforms. People who are in a position to influence the policies and practices of technically non-governmental organizations such as ho
  10. Then you'd be wrong. American bureaucracy is an interesting monster, and not at all limited to the government. Do you even know all about the internal policies to hospitals that's filled with so much bureaucracy? That's what I'm referring to. Isn't the bureaucracy in technically non-governmental organizations such as hospitals largely a result of government requirements?
  11. When people demand "sacrifice", they usually don't define it. Last night on Jeopardy, although no one was demanding "sacrifice", they defined it as giving something up for something more important. This is almost the opposite of Ayn Rand's definition. Of course anyone demanding "sacrifice" will claim that what they are demanding satisfies the definition I heard on Jeopardy, not Ayn Rand's definition. And of course, what we are dealing with in connection with demands for "sacrifice" is the difference between altruist/collectivist and rationally egoist views of importance and value.
  12. It is questionable whether the word "success" applies to either viruses or these virus-like aliens, since neither is alive. But if we want to apply it, perhaps a virus is "successful" if it becomes endemic; that way it doesn't "die" out.
  13. As long as these measures are "justified" by appealing to such vague, collectivized concepts as the public health and the common good, there is no way to avoid containment of an epidemic being used as a precedent for containment of ideas. But what if we argue on the basis that spreading an epidemic is physical force, but spreading ideas is not?
  14. Individuals at the sensory or perceptual level can't have morality or even be working on developing it. Only once an individual reaches a sufficient level of abstraction in the conceptual level can he or she begin developing a morality.
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