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Five Questions for Statists

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posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 06:10 PM
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The political activist Larken Rose posed five questions for statists.



I would like to post his five questions here, to start a discussion with ATS members regarding what they think of potential answers:

Larken Rose's Five Questions for Statists


1) Is there any means by which any number of individuals can delegate to someone else the moral right to do something which none of the individuals have the moral right to do themselves?



2) Do those who wield political power (presidents, legislators, etc.) have the moral right to do things which other people do not have the moral right to do? If so, from whom and how did they acquire such a right?



3) Is there any process (e.g., constitutions, elections, legislation) by which human beings can transform an immoral act into a moral act (without changing the act itself)?



4) When law-makers and law-enforcers use coercion and force in the name of law and government, do they bear the same responsibility for their actions that anyone else would who did the same thing on his own?



5) When there is a conflict between an individual's own moral conscience, and the commands of a political authority, is the individual morally obligated to do what he personally views as wrong in order to "obey the law"?




posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 06:26 PM
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After a quick read here I do have a question. Who defines what "moral" is? The issue pervades the questions as if it is a given, and I don't think it is. Without defining it, I can't really begin to answer these five questions.



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 06:26 PM
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John Adams, a principal crafter and architect of our Constitution, and later our second president, declared, “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

So if even Adams suggests that our Constitution and hence our government is based on morality, how are we to define that morality. Is it up to a limited holy book to decide what is and what is not? Is it up the men who died 200 years ago? Or is it up to us? I say it is up to us and the people we elect to promote our interests.

I like Kings statment concerning this. He said,"“Morality cannot be legislated, but behavior can be regulated. Judicial decrees may not change the heart, but they can restrain the heartless.”
I agree.



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 06:46 PM
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originally posted by: schuyler
After a quick read here I do have a question. Who defines what "moral" is? The issue pervades the questions as if it is a given, and I don't think it is. Without defining it, I can't really begin to answer these five questions.


Personally, I am a fan of objective morality, but I am terrible at making a coherent argument for it.



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 06:51 PM
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originally posted by: TerryMcGuire

So if even Adams suggests that our Constitution and hence our government is based on morality, how are we to define that morality. Is it up to a limited holy book to decide what is and what is not? Is it up the men who died 200 years ago? Or is it up to us? I say it is up to us and the people we elect to promote our interests.


Though I may be misunderstanding, it seems to me you are saying morality is relative, not absolute, and that each generation gets to define what morality is to them. But I remain confused. On the one hand I don't believe there is any morality without "us" to define it. In the Earth's natural state, there is no morality any more than there are any "rights." People define them.

On the other hand I know that different cultures define morality differently, and this is not trivial, especially in a shrinking world where cultures come into conflict so easily. Even within cultures their are stark differences in determining what is and is not moral. Just look at the Pro Choice versus Right to Life people. Both sides claim the moral high ground--vehemently, and occasionally with violence. Of course, there are a zillion examples.

So who gets to decide? And if you say, "The people do!" then I say, but the people don't agree amongst themselves, so saying "it's the prerogative of people" isn't a good answer. And until we can answer that fundamental issue, answering those five questions is impossible. Frankly, I think they are loaded questions from an anti-statist attempting to set the agenda, but they're still good questions to address if the first issue can be addressed first.



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 06:51 PM
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a reply to: CharlestonChew

Is that because SUBJECTIVE often requires a religious or strong cultural bias ?



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 07:00 PM
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I would define morality as "knowing right from wrong." Which, of course, implies that some behaviors are good and some behaviors are bad.

It's easier to define what a good behavior is not.

If a behavior impedes the natural state of a human being, then that behavior is immoral.

By natural state I mean:

All of those qualities we are born with. Our ability to move about, to formulate thoughts, to express/communicate our thoughts, to exist, and to expend our labor to acquire those things necessary for us to exist--to produce and trade with others (or, to form associations with whom we choose).

From this we could deduce the rights of human beings. The right to life, to self-defense, to travel, to freely associate, to be secure in our property (those things we labored to acquire), the right to communicate/express ourselves, and the right to bodily autonomy.

So any behavior that impedes the above is immoral.
edit on 16-6-2016 by CharlestonChew because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 07:01 PM
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originally posted by: cavtrooper7
a reply to: CharlestonChew

Is that because SUBJECTIVE often requires a religious or strong cultural bias ?


What do you mean?



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 07:06 PM
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a reply to: CharlestonChew

More often than not, collective morals are based on these.
The individual would then be more pliant to the state.



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 07:17 PM
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originally posted by: cavtrooper7
a reply to: CharlestonChew

More often than not, collective morals are based on these.
The individual would then be more pliant to the state.


Oh, then yes, that's why I prefer objective morality.



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 07:28 PM
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a reply to: CharlestonChew

Can you flesh that out a tad?
Define objective.



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 07:33 PM
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originally posted by: cavtrooper7
a reply to: CharlestonChew

Can you flesh that out a tad?
Define objective.


Morality that can be logically deduced according to the natural state of human beings.



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 07:44 PM
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a reply to: CharlestonChew

HA!
Who told THAT?
I can ...rather PERSONALLY state that after birth that statement is non applicable to the human condition.
Once a child reaches the ability to understand language the rest of the mess comes with it.



posted on Jun, 16 2016 @ 07:48 PM
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originally posted by: cavtrooper7
a reply to: CharlestonChew

HA!
Who told THAT?
I can ...rather PERSONALLY state that after birth that statement is non applicable to the human condition.
Once a child reaches the ability to understand language the rest of the mess comes with it.


I mean those attributes that we have according to our nature--those things that we can do that require no actions to take place for them to occur.



posted on Jun, 17 2016 @ 01:03 AM
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a reply to: CharlestonChew

Hard to quantify when the choice is internal.



posted on Jun, 17 2016 @ 02:28 AM
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a reply to: schuyler

It does not matter who defined moral, its the same either way but perhaps you should empower yourself to make that decision.

Its not coincidental that you think that someone other than your self has the right to make this decision in your mind. This is what the ptb have done to you and millions of others in this world today, DISempowered you through the making of politician made law that says to do this , dont do do that or else !! and so you begin to think wwweeeeeeelll thats the law int it, spose I have to do as they say.
.



posted on Jun, 17 2016 @ 10:13 AM
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originally posted by: Azureblue
a reply to: schuyler

It does not matter who defined moral, its the same either way but perhaps you should empower yourself to make that decision.

Its not coincidental that you think that someone other than your self has the right to make this decision in your mind. This is what the ptb have done to you and millions of others in this world today, DISempowered you through the making of politician made law that says to do this , dont do do that or else !! and so you begin to think wwweeeeeeelll thats the law int it, spose I have to do as they say.


I don't pretend to understand why you reached those conclusions, especially that assuming I think that "someone other than [my]self has the right to make this decision." I'm trying to get people like you to define just what morality is, and all I get are vague ideas like "objective morality" which remains undefined. Without people thinking it up, there is no morality at all. Is a tiger moral? No, it just does what tigers do. In fact, nature, without humans, is "red in tooth and claw" (William Blake), a pretty nasty place in terms of equal rights for herbivores.

When you look at what people have done prior in this situation, you get stuff like this, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that we are endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights, among them, life liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."

Now why would they invoke a "Creator"? It wasn't because of religion. It was to say that there is something bigger than humans simply defining morality for everyone else. They invoked a 'higher power' specifically to get humans out of the equation. THAT is the purpose of the phrase.

And all we get here is this idea that "morality," or rather, immorality, can be defined as "anything that interferes with a 'natural state." But the "natural state" of humanity can hardly be defined as civilized. And once you get there you begin to see what morality may be. It does not exist until you have relationships BETWEEN other people. In other words, "morality" is the code that defines relationships; it is otherwise meaningless. So I completely reject the idea of an "objective morality."

There is no such thing.



posted on Jun, 17 2016 @ 10:16 AM
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a reply to: CharlestonChew

You can only have morality laws in the cases where everybody has agreed that they are true morals.

For Example:

No Murder.

That one is pretty simple, anybody who isn't psychologically damaged would agree that murder, 99.9% of cases is wrong and should be punished in some form or another.


But if you start trying to ask these questions about let's say marriage, or parenting or really 99.9% of other things we consider 'moral', the whole process falls apart.

I guess that's what a Jury was supposed to do originally, but we have a bastardized version of that now.

~Tenth



posted on Jun, 17 2016 @ 10:22 AM
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I'd say it was for what John Adams thought was moral - which would mean that America as a society is fubared because of all the moral relativist progressive socialist new-age secular garbage that has polluted the nation.

It was great while it lasted.



posted on Jun, 17 2016 @ 10:31 AM
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originally posted by: tothetenthpower
a reply to: CharlestonChew

I guess that's what a Jury was supposed to do originally, but we have a bastardized version of that now.


Just a quick note. The Jury, formulated in English law, was put in place to take the heat off the King. The King made all the decisions, but by putting a jury in place for trials, he could say, "Hey, I didn't convict this guy; you did!" It's comes off as a 'power to the people' thing, but it's kind of deceptive.



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