Human Nature not a constant ?

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Nanos
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Post by Nanos »

> You're arguing against some vague mass of people

Just as people mention Iran as some vague mass of people..


Are we all not just victims of our own countries sins, or are we guilty of aiding and abetting..

I thought we was all spokespeople..

olivier
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Post by olivier »

msimon wrote:There was a Marine Colonel in Iraq who had a guy who wouldn't talk. He fired his pistol near the guy's head to make him give up information. He did and lives were saved.
The Marines cashiered the Colonel. He said he would do it again.
Though it may seem off topic at first, I heard something on the radio yesterday that reflected my way of thinking better than I could express it myself. Axel Kahn was speaking, a respected geneticist and member of our national ethics committee. Dealing with euthanasia he said that, though he could understand it in many cases, he was against any legalization on the ground that it is far better to prohibit while being ready to forgive (and forgive quickly), than start enumerating every situation when it is legal to kill a human being. It is not good to play with the prohibition against homicide.

Torture is just as morally unacceptable as homicide and should remain an absolute prohibition. Nevertheless, under extreme situations, we can forgive. Imagine if the law consisted of a lookup table: on one side a list of circumstances, on the other side the list of appropriate torments. Of course the parliament would endlessly discuss amendments according to the spirit of the times. That is a medieval mindset, no thanks.

MSimon
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Post by MSimon »

Are we all not just victims of our own countries sins, or are we guilty of aiding and abetting..
And I would aid and abet again.

Funny thing morality. When Saddam was putting people in shredders and his sons were grabbing girls off the street for rape - the world was quiet.

As soon as the USA got involved in cleaning up that shite hole the moralists came out of the woodwork. Go figure.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

Mike Holmes
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Post by Mike Holmes »

The implication is preposterous. If Satan sins... we would comment on that why? If God sins, that's comment-worthy, no?

Everybody and his brother denounced the Hussein regime. Starting with those crazy liberals over at Amnesty International. If they're criticizing the US, it's because they expect better than Saddam Hussein from the US.

Again and again, is our standard simply that we have to be no worse than Saddam Hussein? If so, then what have we won by such a victory? In point of fact, we are much better than that, in part because we are allowed to have debates like this on just what the standards should be. Tell people to shut up and accept lower standards at the risk of actually achieving those lower standards. Maybe some day we can be as bad as Saddam Hussein, and just as effectively ruthless.

Sorry, having standards means a higher cost for your society. No, that doesn't make the costs easy to pay. Just be aware that there's something worth purchasing there. That's always been an American quality, no? Like being willing to pay for freedom with lives when it's neccessary? Or are we no longer that principled?

Mike

MSimon
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Post by MSimon »

If they're criticizing the US, it's because they expect better than Saddam Hussein from the US.
And that is what they got. About 90% of the killing in Iraq post Saddam was done by the jihadis. And the other 10%? About 90% of that was the US killing jihadis. So the US score on killing innocents was about 1% of total deaths. Not bad for a war.

And now that the jihadis have been for the most part routed the murder rate in Iraq is lower than the murder rate in Chicago. And a big improvement over Saddam. And the country is growing economically at 3% to 5% a year. And most citizens (roughly 60%) are glad the US overthrew Saddam. In fact they were rooting (for the most part) for a McCain victory due to his stance on supporting their new situation.

I'd aid and abet again.

This picture tells the story:

Image

Kids are hard to fool. The kid standing behind the Marine knows who is looking out for his welfare.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

Mike Holmes
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Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 1:15 pm

Post by Mike Holmes »

My point wasn't that we weren't doing a relatively good job: I for one think we are (then, again, I would). I'm just saying that you're portrayal of hypocrisy is simply wrong.

I do think that Bush's overall strategy is flawwed, too. But that's another subject entirely.

Mike

P.S. Come on. Kids are dead easy to fool (I have two very intelligent kids 4 and 8, and I wouldn't make that claim). And one photo like that could amount to simple propaganda. Not saying it is, but it's hardly conclusive evidence of anything. To bring up your favorite subject, I've seen pictures of Polish kids welcoming Nazi soldiers.

MSimon
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Post by MSimon »

There is no way to tell now if the Bush strategy of "self government reduces grievances" is working for sure.

It does seem to be working for now. And it seems to be having spill over effects. The women of Saudi Arabia are agitating for the right to drive unaccompanied. Women's lib!!!

Of course there is TV and porno on cell phones seems to be working too! In fact an Israeli porn company was talking a while back about opening an Arabic portal. Seems like Jews schtupping is irresistible to some of those Arab perverts.

I can give you a link. For research purposes only!
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

MirariNefas
Posts: 354
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Post by MirariNefas »

Nanos wrote:> You're arguing against some vague mass of people

Just as people mention Iran as some vague mass of people..


Are we all not just victims of our own countries sins, or are we guilty of aiding and abetting..

I thought we was all spokespeople..
Ah, I get it now. You don't actually care what I'm talking about. The moment I opened my mouth about saying that I'm wary of putting Iranians in my group or tribe, you had enough information to identify me as the other. I became the opposing tribe, and all else lost meaning, you simply then decided to be my opponent, and wanted to start fighting against my tribe. Wonderful.

I hope you realize that you've been supporting the only points I've cared about making. I don't actually care if you think America is better than Iran or not. That's the debate I've been avoiding.

ravingdave
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Post by ravingdave »

MirariNefas wrote:
I am completely in favor of torture for the right reasons and using the right methods.
I agree, but I'm going to come out critical and say that the torture debate is rather tired. How often does it really come up anyway, outside of TV? That's a nice example you brought up, but the ultimate futility of the situation you mentioned suggests to me that there aren't a whole lot of situations where torture really was useful for you to draw from, or you'd have done so. So we're left with a debate being waged across years about something which might help one or two children in the next few decades. .



Actually no. I really did only read of this recently, and no other real world example comes immediately to mind, but any number of gedanken experiments will serve as well as a real world example.

MirariNefas wrote: I think it may be more useful to boil out the specifics, to the final question: is it okay to do bad things to bad people if it helps other people (presumably good ones)? And the answer that we as a society has always embraced is yes. We do this every time we restrict somebody's freedom of movement by imprisoning murderers. If this principle was ever under attack, I hope we'd see just as vigourous a defense, because there'd be a lot more at stake. But arguing about whether or not we can do slightly worse things to bad people seems like a lot of talk about very little.

You are saying it is a question of scale, not direction ? That seems reasonable to me. I suppose I will "Aghast" everyone and declare that I support torture as a punishment for a crime. As a matter of fact, I think an "eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth" has not been improved upon at all with our current legal system.

A friend that I talk to often, always mentions the idea of having a robot which he calls "hamarabi" just for the purpose of raping rapists. While I think the idea is silly, I very much agree with the idea that criminals should suffer at least as much as their victims, and that would only make them EVEN. Then the criminal should be PUNISHED !

Call it equality before the law.


David

ravingdave
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Post by ravingdave »

MSimon wrote:There was a Marine Colonel in Iraq who had a guy who wouldn't talk. He fired his pistol near the guy's head to make him give up information. He did and lives were saved.

The Marines cashiered the Colonel. He said he would do it again.

Now there was a stand up guy.

I had a friend who was in the Vietnam war. He told me that he witnessed a bunch of captured VC being interrogated, and when they wouldn't cooperate they took them up in a helicopter, but unbeknownst to them they had slowly dropped in altitude until they were short height above ground. They asked the first one to talk. He refused. They threw him out the door. The next one started talking.

Of course thats just what he told me. They might very well have thrown the guy out at altitude but I wouldn't admit to it either.


David

ravingdave
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Post by ravingdave »

Nanos, have you ever seen a move called "Team America, World Police."

There's a hell of a lot of truth in that movie. If you haven't seen it, get it. It's a hoot !




David

ravingdave
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Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2007 2:41 am

Post by ravingdave »

Just ran into this. Its about Torture and the notion that it in fact, works very well.


http://ace.mu.nu/archives/279958.php#279958


David

MirariNefas
Posts: 354
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:57 am

Post by MirariNefas »

Actually no. I really did only read of this recently, and no other real world example comes immediately to mind, but any number of gedanken experiments will serve as well as a real world example.
I concede that I don't have enough data to really make the assertion I made. I just know that I see examples like yours a fair amount, and examples like MSimons, which sound good, but no names, no dates... I see nothing to indicate it's anything more than a story. So, I'll say that if torture is as useful as you say, I support it.

I think your thoughts on using torture as a punishment have merit. I'm not sure I'll embrace them, but I don't see why so many people think this sort of thing is monstrous. At least for violent crimes, anyway.

Nanos
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Post by Nanos »

> "Team America, World Police."

Yes seen that, and as you say a hoot. (I'm also a big fan of Family Guy, South Park and American Dad, though I don't necessarly get all the cultural jokes.)


> I became the opposing tribe, and all else lost meaning, you simply
> then decided to be my opponent, and wanted to start fighting
> against my tribe. Wonderful.
>
> I hope you realize that you've been supporting the only points
> I've cared about making

Its not uncommon for me to play the devils advocate to help someone else get a point over that I agree with, as at times a simple agreement I don't goes far enough and you need to show people more the reasoning behind ones thinking with a practical example.

To me, your behaviour shows me the same. Whether you don't understand what I was trying to say, or as you imagine I was, blinded by the tribe thing and that was the only thing in your mind which was the real issue.

Our exchanges perhaps show just how difficult it is to communicate once the slightest conflict exists. (As well as educating me about the tribe thing, which I thank you for that as it gives me a better idea how to consoludate a community without worrying so much about differences between members.)

ravingdave
Posts: 650
Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2007 2:41 am

Post by ravingdave »

Was this ever in doubt ?


http://www.physorg.com/news149142491.html

An Excerpt:

PhysorgArticle wrote: "The idea is that your genes predispose you to certain behaviors and those behaviors elicit different kinds of social reactions from others," said Burt, assistant professor of psychology. "And so what's happening is, your genes are to some extent driving your social experiences."


David

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