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 A question for everyone here. - Altruism

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PostSubject: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 5:26 pm

I'm curious about your answers.

Question: If you saw some child drowning in a pool, and nobody was around to save him or her, would you save the child? The child is not yours, so there is no biological imperative for you to save him or her.

State your reasoning.


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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 5:32 pm

Yes.

You didn't include a cost.
If there was no big risk, why not?

I would rescue a puppy, a kitten, a lion.

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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 5:36 pm

Satyr wrote:
Yes.

You didn't include a cost.
If there was no big risk, why not?

I would rescue a puppy, a kitten, a lion.  

There is no cost in this scenario. But why would you save the child? What is your reason for doing so? Why give the child any more regard than a pile of worms being crushed by a boot?
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 5:40 pm

If you want the mind-experiment to be effective you must include a risk, a cost...otherwise why would you not?

Then it's a matter of feeling its suffering, as you would your own, and wanting to stop it. Unless one is a sociopath, which I have been accused of, then you would act.

Now, if you ask me if I would help the child if my life was at risk or that of my own child...then my answer would be NO!

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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 5:55 pm

Satyr wrote:
If you want the mind-experiment to be effective you must include a risk, a cost...otherwise why would you not?

Then it's a matter of feeling its suffering, as you would your own, and wanting to stop it. Unless one is a sociopath, which I have been accused of, then you would act.

Now, if you ask me if I would help the child if my life was at risk or that of my own child...then my answer would be NO!

I figured that if there was a grave cost, that most here would not save the child. The experiment is more to hit on the subjects of morality and humanity. Many people in my ' Ego Death ' thread were claiming my humanitarian desires to be unreasonable and ridiculous. I'm trying to see if there is some hypocrisy brewing around.


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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 5:59 pm

It doesn't have to be human...but alive.

I would save a tree from being swept away by a river...if ti cost me next to nothing.

Cost/Benefit

The Humanitarianism comes in when you purposefully go out looking for people to save, and when it does cost you something....like time.

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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:12 pm

Why would you save the tree? The tree doesn't suffer, well not like an animal or human does.

The act of saving a child, animal, tree that is not your own is humanitarian-ish/altruistic. Sure, it may or may not cost you much, but the act itself echoes of morality. It just doesn't seem to be in accord with the naturalist/Nietzschean philosophy of survival of the fittest, in my opinion.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:18 pm

Quote :
The experiment is more to hit on the subjects of morality and humanity. Many people in my ' Ego Death ' thread were accusing my humanitarian desires to be unreasonable and ridiculous. I'm trying to see if there is some hypocrisy brewing around.

So in other words, you just admitted that this hypothetical is a farce and you merely intended to entrap those who challenged your initial self-assessments.

Dude, one with a higher consciousness that goes beyond mere survival would jump in and save the child. I would save the child because I'm not a double digit IQed mindless savage. Your need to convey to everyone your intrinsic and recently sprouted altruism speaks of an ambivalence that you try to hide behind the ideology of "humanitarianism".

It is a matter of introspection that you seemingly have no ability for. Why do you suddenly feel the need to play this maternal wide hipped saint to the frail and needy, other than that you feel it is the right thing to do? how is humanitarianism not a corollary of liberalism? If i wanted to understand libertarianism, should i completely discount liberalism's relation to it because it's slightly differentiated in meaning and because it's a longer word?
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:24 pm

A traumatic event, like a life threatening one, always makes the mind seek support in the otherness.

Some are "born again" others discover the merits of helping others...etc.

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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:29 pm

I understand. His conundrum however is that he has no idea why he's doing it.


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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:29 pm

stargazer wrote:
Quote :
The experiment is more to hit on the subjects of morality and humanity. Many people in my ' Ego Death ' thread were accusing my humanitarian desires to be unreasonable and ridiculous. I'm trying to see if there is some hypocrisy brewing around.

So in other words, you just admitted that this hypothetical is a farce and you merely intended to entrap those who challenged your initial self-assessments.

Dude, one with a higher consciousness that goes beyond mere survival would jump in and save the child. I would save the child because I'm not a double digit IQed mindless savage. Your need to convey to everyone your intrinsic and recently sprouted altruism speaks of an ambivalence that you try to hide behind the ideology of "humanitarianism".  

It is a matter of introspection that you seemingly have no ability for. Why do you suddenly feel the need to play this maternal wide hipped saint to the frail and needy, other than that you feel it is the right thing to do? how is humanitarianism not a corollary of liberalism? If i wanted to understand libertarianism, should i completely discount liberalism's relation to it because it's slightly differentiated in meaning and because it's a longer word?

It's not a farce. Sure, I'm trying to see if people are being hypocritical, but so what? My need? There was no need. That's just something you are saying vindictively.  I even mentioned in my thread that I wasn't even going to post it. I knew some people would accuse me of the things you do.

Star wrote: "I understand. His conundrum however is that he has no idea why he's doing it."

That's just, straightforwardly, false.


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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:37 pm


Alas, your continued girly evasion of my inquiries. Because you just seem so docile, I think I'll just let you be now. I feel like I'm screaming at a lamb.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:40 pm

stargazer wrote:

Alas, your continued girly evasion of my inquiries. Because you just seem so docile, I think I'll just let you be now. I feel like I'm screaming at a lamb.

Your use of elementary-school insults indicates an emotional angle. I haven't evaded your questions; your questions have been answered in prior threads. Look at my post " Why I Am Not A Leftist " in my Abridged Edifications thread.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:43 pm

The other week a woman driving a car pulled up beside my house. Inside the front passenger seat was her irate partner screaming terrible things 'cunt', 'bitch' etc. In the back seat were their two young children (I would guess 5 and 2 years old). He didn't hit her but grabbed her arm several times and everyone was clearly distressed.

I live in inner city London so let's just say there was not a dearth of intervening people looking to help out: more like a bunch of mildly entertained spectators looking through their windows.

I went downstairs and outside being as reassuring as I could be. At first the dude, who was Irish and maybe 6'3 220lbs was NOT receptive to interference despite the obvious scene he was making. He got out of his car and began to approach me. I pointed to his kids and told him I would rather not have interfered but advised him to just take a moment to consider their distress and the general situation.

He calmed down pretty quickly seemingly becoming more aware of how much attention he was attracting and how it could have been interpreted. I went back in and they left a minute later, still bickering, but it a much less aggressive fashion.

I bring it up because despite not being exactly what you are talking about I did seriously consider not getting involved in the family affairs of other people, but, I decided to intervene, largely, because it was in my direct domain of influence. To my mind, functional life-affirming people influence and reduce negativity in their surroundings when it is possible. This goes doubly so in the case of children or with an immanent danger.

To my mind, there is a power connected with these sorts of things: you are imposing your will or intervening to change a certain outcome which you find unnecessary or even repulsive. This is why I think you are being clumsy by calling yourself a 'Humanitarian' or aspiring to be one.  What you seem to be talking about is 'Philanthropy'

Wikipedia wrote:
Philanthropy etymologically means "love of humanity" in the sense of caring, nourishing, developing and enhancing "what it is to be human"

There is definitely a power element here: a shaping and moulding of otherness to your desires. A love of a certain type of personally-desired humanity and a nourishing of what that constitutes when you see the opportunity.

With all of the lost and vulnerable people in these times it is certainly true that power and influence can be attained by something that seems alturistic on the surface. A giving in order to be seen giving or to be known to be giving. Bill Gates is a good example of this.

Ask yourself: do you want to help children simply for their benefit or do you wish to receive gratitude, admiration and respect for your endeavours? Does it benefit your perception of self? etc.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:59 pm

Strong wrote: "Ask yourself: do you want to help children simply for their benefit or do you wish to receive gratitude, admiration and respect for your endeavours? Does it benefit your perception of self? etc."

It's not because I want to be seen. If it ever turns into merely that, then I will discontinue my philanthropic endeavors. I wasn't planning on bringing a camera crew or making blogs about helping kids. My deeds will most likely go unrecognized which is fine by me as that isn't my intention.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:09 pm

Let me put it this way, would you continue helping a bunch of genuinely ungrateful little shits just because you believed it was the right thing to do? Even if it began to impose on you and you began to believe you were being taken advantage of?

Or are there preconditions to your assistance/guidance? Should certain strengths and potentials need to be evident in order for you to feel your philanthropy is justifiable? Should those who benefit hold you in high esteem or is this not important? Not being seen in the sense of 'just to be seen', but to have the reputation as a giving/overflowing person in public life etc. I have heard it referred to 'King energy' ie being a conduit/steward for certain types of energy and values through you actions.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:16 pm

Well if they were being ungrateful and trying to take advantage of me, then that would suggest they don't desire my help, and I would leave them be. I offer my assistance to those who need/want it, honestly.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:33 pm

To me, knowing that no act can truly be selfless and that action is directed by need, I see giving as a re-enforcement and dissemination of values. Who gave? What did they give? What quantity? At what personal cost/benefit? - These questions define the type of generosity involved.

There is a certain necessary arrogance attached to all giving natures. Believing that what you have to offer is beneficial to another on their own particular path elevates you above them in this regard, unique to whatever you happen to give: money, time, advice, strength... And not everyone is inclined or able to be as overflowing as that or to think what they have to offer is of value.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:49 pm

I wouldn't call it arrogance. Sure, I'm in a sort of elevated position, ok. But that's not arrogance. It's not even a need. I could just be caring and giving to my family and no one else. I want to help out some others, don't need to.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 3:17 am

Very good posts by strongarm itt.

I'm writing a verbose post Smile

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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 2:29 pm

Here's a chat with Mo last night. Take it for what it's worth, a little brainstorming Smile

Quote :
[21:43:06 12/06/14] Mo : I don't have a certain answer to the question, you know.

[21:43:28 12/06/14] Mo : I mean, if you were to make the example tough enough, and then ask the question.

[21:43:46 12/06/14] Mo : Not that I wouldn't save the child... but that I don't have a certain explanation for it

[21:44:17 12/06/14] phoneutria : I started a post. ..

[21:44:38 12/06/14] phoneutria : goes sort of like this

[21:45:52 12/06/14] phoneutria : when you see an interesting looking leaf, a cricket, a butterfly flapping in the water, you're drawn to it

[21:46:34 12/06/14] phoneutria : a bird, a rabbit, a dog... even more so

[21:46:46 12/06/14] phoneutria : a human, even more so

[21:47:13 12/06/14] phoneutria : we look around for things that strike our attention, and we go to them

[21:47:42 12/06/14] phoneutria : because we are opportunistic feeders, omnivores

[21:48:00 12/06/14] phoneutria : we're looking for food Smile

[21:50:07 12/06/14] Mo : It's common to hear someone say, "Oh, he did it for the publicity, or the congratulations" after he does something remarkable.

[21:50:49 12/06/14] Mo : But when someone jumps on a grenade, runs into a fire, or risks his life... this is doubtful, to me---though, whether it's right or wrong can't be proven.

[21:52:27 12/06/14] phoneutria : the actual motivation for philantropy must come from empathy

[21:54:22 12/06/14] phoneutria : to understand that the other suffers

[21:54:42 12/06/14] phoneutria : and to share the suffering

[21:55:16 12/06/14] phoneutria : and to relieve the other's suffering is to share in the relief of suffering

[21:55:21 12/06/14] Mo : I guess so

[21:56:25 12/06/14] Mo : It might also have to do with self-definition

[21:56:47 12/06/14] Mo : "I am a person who does X, because I define myself by what doing X represents"

[21:57:45 12/06/14] Mo : So anyways, how does what you said relate to the example and what you would do?

[22:00:12 12/06/14] phoneutria : I would take considerable risk to save a child

[22:01:35 12/06/14] phoneutria : what I said relates in that even a sociopath would go to the water, not out of empathy, but out of curiosity

[22:01:46 12/06/14] phoneutria : in search of a potential gain

[22:02:12 12/06/14] phoneutria : not a "moral" action

[22:02:40 12/06/14] Mo : It's a "moral" action if it is how you think you should act.

[22:02:51 12/06/14] Mo : It even has the backing of a popular theory.

[22:02:55 12/06/14] Mo : Like ethical egoism.

[22:03:39 12/06/14] Mo : Whether it's right or not, is different.

[22:04:01 12/06/14] phoneutria : what I mean is that I think that the behavior of pulling things out of the water must have evolved before empathy

[22:05:23 12/06/14] Mo : Right.

[22:06:58 12/06/14] Mo : I think the behavior of pulling things out of the water probably came before any conception of 'self', as well.

[22:07:04 12/06/14] Mo : If you take the evolutionary story back far enough.

[22:07:50 12/06/14] phoneutria : indeed

[22:09:37 12/06/14] Mo : What pushes the sociopath to risk himself for the child?

[22:13:06 12/06/14] phoneutria : a sociopath is more likely to make a calculation of risk benefit before jumping in the water than everyone else

[22:15:12 12/06/14] Mo : Cost benefit analysis is done by most people.

[22:15:34 12/06/14] Mo : A sociopath might be less likely to see a benefit in saving someone else... especially a child.

[22:15:39 12/06/14] phoneutria : of course

[22:15:46 12/06/14] phoneutria : but we w

[22:16:26 12/06/14] phoneutria : but we weigh emotions more heavily

[22:17:35 12/06/14] phoneutria : he might not be in the mood to get wet that specific day

[22:18:45 12/06/14] phoneutria : a sociopath will think only of its gain

[22:19:09 12/06/14] phoneutria : or psychopath Smile

[22:19:40 12/06/14] phoneutria : we will think also of the other's gain

[22:20:39 12/06/14] Mo : It seems like a simple question, and the answer is simple, but explaining it is hard.

[22:20:51 12/06/14] Mo : I'd rather die than walk past a child drowning and do nothing. But explaining 'why' is less instinctual

[22:21:20 12/06/14] Mo : And, the simple example can be made harder, and harder, until a person breaks

[22:21:26 12/06/14] phoneutria : we've brushed past this subject before

[22:22:12 12/06/14] phoneutria : remember we've talked about cooking for someone

[22:22:27 12/06/14] phoneutria : in order to benefit from their company

[22:22:53 12/06/14] Mo : Of course I remember Smile

[22:23:30 12/06/14] Mo : Sometimes you keep your guest to cook vegetables.

[22:27:18 12/06/14] phoneutria : but to cook something that is good and to give it to someone else to taste

[22:27:40 12/06/14] phoneutria : and to see their pleasure to eat it, is a pleasure as well

[22:28:22 12/06/14] Mo : Definitely.

[22:28:39 12/06/14] phoneutria : is it because you share in the pleasure?

[22:29:01 12/06/14] phoneutria : or is it because it corroborates your success in making that dish?

[22:29:18 12/06/14] phoneutria : a sense of accomplishments?

[22:29:30 12/06/14] Mo : Neither.

[22:29:54 12/06/14] phoneutria : why is it?

[22:29:59 12/06/14] Mo : I mean, both of those things could be operating

[22:30:23 12/06/14] Mo : But you could get pleasure just from seeing what you value be its valuable self.

[22:30:52 12/06/14] Mo : Rather than your own success, or your imagination of how the food tastes.

[22:31:04 12/06/14] Mo : (I'm just thinking up a possibility)

[22:31:53 12/06/14] phoneutria : a validation of your judgment, by another

[22:32:20 12/06/14] phoneutria : perhaps this example is a similar one

[22:32:48 12/06/14] phoneutria : aside from the fact that given no risk, anyone will pull someone out of the water

[22:34:08 12/06/14] phoneutria : to have saved someone or something might give you a pleasure by validating something through another

[22:34:49 12/06/14] Mo : Yea

[22:36:46 12/06/14] phoneutria : there is also a pleasure in being an operator of change of a future

[22:37:01 12/06/14] Mo : Yes, like Strongarm said

[22:37:04 12/06/14] Mo : That was a good point

[22:37:09 12/06/14] phoneutria : yes

[22:37:14 12/06/14] Mo : An exercise of your power

[22:37:23 12/06/14] Mo : To alter others

[22:37:29 12/06/14] Mo : Or some situation

[22:37:35 12/06/14] phoneutria : I feel that in being a parent

[22:38:10 12/06/14] phoneutria : the influence that a single person may have in the course of history
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:48 pm

Quote :
Question: If you saw some child drowning in a pool, and nobody was around to save him or her, would you save the child? The child is not yours, so there is no biological imperative for you to save him or her. 

Make it more interesting, put something on the line mabey. There would be a biological imperative in most cases regardless. But I am more divorced from it. If two on the line, would save the better rather than the own. 
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 5:08 pm

So if your child and his friend from school who is top of the class are drowning, you go for the top of the class first?
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 6:10 pm

Another "philosophical question":

A young boy, eight or so, has just pushed a kid over a cliff.
The parent grabs it by the throat and begins to throttle it...slowly you see it dying.

What do you do?

Do you step in to save it?
Do you kick it in the head, helping the father?
Do you sit back and enjoy the scene?


In liberal discourse, it's always some pure, anonymous, with no past, no presence, idea of a boy or child or woman or man...You know an unrealistic one...a theoretical one.

It's like modern art.
The artist splashes some crazy pain on a canvas, or has his pet monkey do it for him, and then allow the observer to project there whatever touches him....and he takes the credit as if it were intentional.

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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 6:17 pm

Satyr wrote:
Another "philosophical question":

A young boy, eight or so, has just pushed a kid over a cliff.
The parent grabs it by the throat and begins to throttle it...slowly you see it dying.

What do you do?

Do you step in to save it?
Do you kick it in the head, helping the father?
Do you sit back and enjoy the scene?


In liberal discourse, it's always some pure, anonymous, with no past, no presence, idea of a boy or child or woman or man...You know an unrealistic one...a theoretical one.

It's like modern art.
The artist splashes some crazy pain on a canvas, or has his pet monkey do it for him, and then allow the observer to project there whatever touches him....and he takes the credit as if it were intentional.

There are some missing variables. Did the kid realize, fully, what he was doing? If he or she was mature enough to realize so, I'd say let the parents strangle the kid.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 6:21 pm

You mean you provided variables?
I did not see them.

My bad.

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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 6:35 pm

I remember dialing 9-11 when I was around 7 years old. I thought it would be funny...until the cops showed up at my house and gave me a 20 minute lecture on the gravity of what I had just did. I didn't realize the seriousness, the consequences of my actions. Reason I bring this up is because it could pertain to your hypothetical scenario; maybe the kid pushed the other kid over naively....
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 6:39 pm

Satyr wrote:
Another "philosophical question":

A young boy, eight or so, has just pushed a kid over a cliff.
The parent grabs it by the throat and begins to throttle it...slowly you see it dying.

What do you do?

Do you step in to save it?
Do you kick it in the head, helping the father?
Do you sit back and enjoy the scene?


In liberal discourse, it's always some pure, anonymous, with no past, no presence, idea of a boy or child or woman or man...You know an unrealistic one...a theoretical one.

It's like modern art.
The artist splashes some crazy pain on a canvas, or has his pet monkey do it for him, and then allow the observer to project there whatever touches him....and he takes the credit as if it were intentional.


Even a grown adult gets a trial by a jury of peers.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 6:41 pm

Ah yes...ignorance is bliss...and innocence is not a negative...but a positive.

Cute.

See a man jumping into danger to save a boy, is never explored to discover his motivations...but a parent who kills a boy who just killed his own child, must be sick, and must be given the proper institutional throttling in return.
We always side with the weakest, the lowest common denominator: insecurity, powerlessness, fear, weakness...

Then we pretend we are the opposite, using words....when actions are involved out true colors shine through.
Good thing we live in a culture where only words, and then only some words, are permitted.  

I do not want to say anything more because I might say something negative, that might be hurtful to someone/anyone, and expose how sad and lonely, and a loser, I truly am.

Have fun...focus on the happiness.
Never be negative about anything, unless the majority agrees with the negativity...otherwise you will be ostracized and quarantined.
Always consult the majority before you pass judgment.

The shit-Stain on ILP taught me:
"Philosophy is NOT about value judgments."
Very, very wise words.
Maybe you should go to ILP and pick up some more wisdom.

Stop thinking so much.

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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism Fri Jun 13, 2014 6:49 pm

Satyr wrote:
Ah yes...ignorance is bliss...and innocence is not a negative...but a positive.

Cute.

See a man jumping into danger to save a boy, is never explored to discover his motivations...but a parent who kills a boy who just killed his own child, must be sick, and must be given the proper institutional throttling in return.
We always side with the weakest, the lowest common denominator: insecurity, powerlessness, fear, weakness...

Then we pretend we are the opposite, using words....when actions are involved out true colors shine through.
Good thing we live in a culture where only words, and then only some words, are permitted.  

I do not want to say anything more because I might say something negative, that might be hurtful to someone/anyone, and expose how sad and lonely, and a loser, I truly am.

Have fun...focus on the happiness.
Never be negative about anything, unless the majority agrees with the negativity...otherwise you will be ostracized and quarantined.
Always consult the majority before you pass judgment.

Stop thinking so much.

I never said that a parent that kills a boy that just killed their own kid is sick. Never. I would, instinctively, kill the kid who did that, most likely, or at the very least give the kid a major ass-beating and detain him until the police arrive. It's a slippery slope, as prior mentioned.
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PostSubject: Re: A question for everyone here. - Altruism

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A question for everyone here. - Altruism
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