1277: "Ayn Random"

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby eran_rathan » Tue Nov 12, 2013 12:29 pm UTC

Because then 'clone-power Superman' has a monopoly on force?
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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby ucim » Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:12 pm UTC

You outline reasonable goals. However you also (in past posts) demonize some things that the rest of us seem to think should not be demonized. That has become a focus of discussion, and (I think) the source of the frustration.

Pfhorrest wrote:I am not some fucking right-wing talking head. I just think that after all those more pressing concerns are addressed, there's still a philosophical problem remaining to be solved [...] and that if we can solve the theory of it now...
I don't agree that there's a philosophical problem, because I don't buy into your philosophical foundation (the deontic property-rights based system you outlined).

Pfhorrest wrote:Suppose that you personally were somehow powerful enough to single-handedly police the whole world [...] [with] rules [that] can't let you just do anything you arbitrarily decide is necessary to anyone [...] So the rules you enforce and yourself obey have to be such that there are only specific circumstances in which you can intervene only in specific ways [...] Are you all saying that there is no such set of rules that would achieve that balance between helpless pacifism and total anomie, without giving your hypothetical super-self one set of rules and everyone else another?
We have this now.

This is exactly what we have now.

This is where we butt heads. You seem to think that (I'm using the US now) police, ambulance drivers, lawmakers, and other such are not constrained by law... that they legitimately excercise arbitrary power. This simply is not so. There may be abuse of power, that exists in every system, but that is not legitimate use of power, which is what you are focusing on.

Pfhorrest wrote:why demonize binding your own and others' hands equally and giving yourself and others the same reign, neither binding your or anyone else's hands fully, nor giving yourself or anyone else completely free reign?
... because you present it as an absolute.

Pfhorrest wrote:Couldn't you just go around defending people from aggressors and then not aggressing yourself? Is that somehow logically impossible?
Yes, because the boundary between defense and offense is not sharp. Besides, this is the worst system there is; it means that each of us has to be the police. I don't want to be police. I want to go to a concert, I want to ottify a song, I want to sail my boat. I don't want to have to be defending other people from nearby smokers (despite the fact that I think smoking is gross, inconsiderate, rude, and should be punished by... well, let's not go there. :) )

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby Kit. » Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:59 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:
Kit. wrote:
Pfhorrest wrote:If you think my ideas are misanthropic then you do not understand them. I'm looking for ways to eliminate things like violence, aggression, and exploitation, from the places where they are enshrined deep within the foundations of our societies.

...[your ideas] would look quite fitting as a seemingly nice proposal of some evil misanthropic genius, loaded with the only goal to completely destroy the society in order to make a point how "worthless" as rational beings real live humans are.

This is the kind of shit that makes me feel antagonized. I have been very clear over and over again that I absolutely do not want the kind of hellfire and brimstone you all think would come about if we did things any differently than we are now, and that the whole conversation I wanted to have was how to eventually, somehow fix some more subtle problems without bring about those kinds of consequences. And then you people write like I want a Snow Crash dystopia or a Somalia or something like that. If you're going to so blatantly mischaracterize my motives, you think I'm going to give your criticism the time of day? You might have some valuable insight to lend -- and a creationist might highlight a genuine gap in our knowledge of evolution and spur some genuine research to fill that gap, especially back in the bad old days when evolutionary science was new -- but when your purpose is explicitly not constructive but rather just attacking someone who disagrees with you, not trying to solve a problem but just insisting that it can't be solved or isn't even a problem, then don't expect them to want to listen.

How many times do I have to say, how much more clearly can I say it... I hope the Republican party dies in a fucking fire, I think the capital-L Libertarian party is hardly any better in many ways, all the things I hate about the Democrats are the things they have in common with the Republicans, my favorite US political party is the Greens, I favor progressive taxation over any other kind, I support welfare programs for the needy, I absolutely hate corporatism and capitalism, I call myself a fucking socialist for god's sake. I think the US could stand to copy a lot from European countries, especially Scandinavian ones. I am not some fucking right-wing talking head. I just think that after all those more pressing concerns are addressed, there's still a philosophical problem remaining to be solved, the solution to which must come in some way that doesn't unmake all that good of course; and that if we can solve the theory of it now, we could get those who support the hypocritical right-wing talking heads for such abstract reasons to put their support behind those more pressing social concerns, and everybody would be better off in both the short term and the long term. That's a big hard problem, but one with such stakes hanging on it I think it's at least worth giving honest consideration instead of just saying "nope it's impossible" or "there is no problem, we're right, you're a monster". Fuck that noise.

See how little is needed to make you feel violated, exploited and aggressive enough to affect your judgement.
And that's on a moderated forum, and the other side doesn't really intend to hurt you.

Were your physical property laws violated?
Will your physical property laws save you from it?
If it is done by your neighbors, intentionally, deliberately, regularly and for their profit.

And this is exactly what makes your ideas look misanthropic.
Not because there is a way to apply them incorrectly and diasastrously.
But because applying them to real live people won't achieve your goals.
In order to achieve your goals by applying your ideas you need to strip humans of their human being and turn them into physical-property-handling zombies.

And there is no way around it.

And it doesn't mean that you are a monster. You are just a human.

Pfhorrest wrote:Suppose that you personally were somehow powerful enough to single-handedly police the whole world -- like say you're Superman but with a cloning power that will let you be everywhere at once -- but you are a good person and do not want to put yourself above ordinary people. You want to obey the same rules you make sure other people are following.

Are you all saying that you think there is no possible way you could do that?

I'm already doing it.

The problem is that my clones are quite confused about their goals and cannot communicate well enough with each other.
Some of them are discussing it in this thread.
And one of them is you.

Pfhorrest wrote:Obviously I think there pretty clearly is a set of rules that work right there in that golden mean, something resembling (but not exactly) those of classical liberalism and the principle of non-aggression: roughly, you're not allowed to hurt anyone except to stop people from hurting other people. You're allowed to defend yourself, and you're allowed to defend others, but you're not allowed to attack anyone. Anyone else is allowed to do the same, though if you're doing your super-job, they won't have to. There's room for refinement on what exactly counts as "hurting someone" or the equivalent -- this is why I don't think classical liberalism has it quite perfect just yet -- but something roughly following that pattern seems the clear solution. This "what if you were clone-power Superman" scenario is meant to highlight the intuitive obviousness of this. If you had immense overwhelming power, would you be doomed to be either as useless as you are now without any power, or a tyrant placing yourself above all others? Is there no possible way you could use your power to good ends without putting yourself above the same laws you're trying to uphold? Couldn't you just go around defending people from aggressors and then not aggressing yourself? Is that somehow logically impossible?

It may be logically possible (depending on the definition of aggression), the question is if it is practically solvable. I might have my super powers, but as long as I have only the brains of a human being, I might not be able to distinguish between the border cases for a non-trivial definition of aggression in time to prevent an act of it. Or ever.

And the question remains if it's actually healthy for a human society to live without any aggression at all.

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby speising » Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:07 pm UTC

i personally wouldn't want to live in a society where everyone around me aggressively imposes their personal rules and morale upon me.

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby addams » Wed Nov 13, 2013 2:49 am UTC

Yes. Humans need Laws.

What kind? Sane ones would be a nice start.
Then a little educated, compassionate, professional enforcement.

It seems to be generally clear that what the US has now is not optimum.
What to replace it with? The US, sort of, likes things the way they are.

People are used to being miserable. People like to complain.
People enjoy blaming other people for imagined faults.

We are people, after all.

EDIT:
I want to tell a story. About politics? No.
About People and Rules. We need rules.

Rules will not stop us from being People.
It is so unrelated.
Spoiler:
Doctors are People.
Nurses are People.


Who the Fuck does he think he is?
He knows what needs to be done. (i hope)

The Story? Do you know how often an NG Tube is needed in a regular Small Town Hospital, way back in TheDay??
Not very often, is the Answer.

One day a very ill person was admitted.
No one had any idea what was Wrong.
It was fairly obvious Something was Wrong.

Constant Vomiting. Well?....Seizures?
Nah. Not Seizures.

What happened with the Nursing Staff?
There were orders for an NG Tube written.

!No One Knew How To DO It!
Finding a kit was mildly tricky.
(thank fucking, God! for the pharmacy staff.
they know everything!)


So, funny. One mature, intelligent Nurse, was reading Directions and doing the procedure.
The other delightful and concerned and curious, worried, Nurses stood around and Watched.
(If a Nurse is On Duty and is not Worried, that Nurse is not doing their Job.
When a Nurse is Off Duty, you have to pull some amazing Trick to get their attention.)

Like a weird Sports Game. (funny, after the fact.)
Nearly everyone wanted to take a look at the Rules.

Everyone was quiet, like Golf. Talking, but quiet and only about the Game.
They each and everyone was Back-Up for the Nurse with The Gloves on.
That was so long ago, she did not wear Gloves.

My point? No one wanted to insert that NG Tube.
But; Someone needed to. It was the right thing to do.

"If he wants this done; He should DO it!"
"Where is He??"

He's talking to his friends.

"Where?"
He's talking to Joe Hanson.
oh.

He was doing his Job. It was up to the Nursing Staff to do their Job.
When that NG Tube worked, everyone felt good about it. Well....

I am not sure, everyone felt good about it.
The Patient would not have lived, if the Doctor had not ordered it.

Who invented the NG Tube?
Gross! Nursing is Gross!

A fucking lot of Gross Anatomy.
We had to know Electron Transport Systems, For This!?
Yes. For this.

What do you think the Doctors said to one another?
Some will Order Weird Shit and Leave.
Like the panda that eats shoots and leaves.

It is good to know who to Trust. Joe Hanson was trusted by Everyone.

Rules. Who follows The Rules? The Police? What Rules?
The Nursing Staff? What Rules?

DId you hear about what happened in Deming, New Mexico?
The Nursing staff was not thinking. Or; The nursing staff were doing their Jobs.

Mindless entertainment? Off Duty, mindless entertainment. What do you do, Off Duty?


Me?
Spoiler:
Nothing. I can't do anything Off Duty, if I am never On Duty.


What is written? Is it written to wash? It sure is!
Those directions have to be written by someone.
Then followed. By the author?
Spoiler:
Who writes the directions for NG Tubes?
Those directions were written so long ago.
The author must be dead. People do not live much more than one hundred years.


You want to write the directions for Sane Living?
You want to get it all on one sheet of paper?

Pfhorrest? I am sorry to pick on you.
But; It's funny.

Write the Rules for Sane Living and get it on One Page.
Internet Pages are Huge. How hard can it be?

One sentience might carry your visions into the Future.
!Every Man For Himself!

Gangs are a way for each man to feel safer.
Men like to feel safe. Hence, Gangs.

How are we doing? You?
Last edited by addams on Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:58 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
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Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby Endovior » Wed Nov 13, 2013 5:26 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:So there's a puzzle: how can you make an honest living performing this undoubtedly valuable social service? (And not just protecting people from each other, but feeding the poor and healing the sick and all the other things people are calling on your for these days). That was the main puzzle I was looking to solve in the first place.


I believe that the answer simply is: you can't. TANSTAAFL applies; there is always a cost, someone always has to pay for it. There are systems in which no one gets protected, fed, or healed without being able to pay for it, but the negative effects of that are specifically the problem you're trying to deal with. As such, you're working with a system in which people can get those services 'for free'. It's unlikely that you'll be able to mostly make a profit while giving away some amount of your services, which means that the services themselves lose money. That means that money has to come from somewhere else to support you. If the services in question are set up like that, then you aren't really making an 'honest living' providing them; you're performing vital services, and analogous to that, some other apparatus is performing a task that puts money in your account that lets the thing keep running. Conventionally, that other apparatus is a system of taxation, which has its own problems. Theoretically, that apparatus might be replaced with something that's independently profitable, like the idea of government-owned investments you mentioned earlier. Regardless, this still leaves the funding element separate from the functional element.

This isn't necessarily bad... the problems have always been worse on the funding side, after all. Accordingly, I'd suggest that we shouldn't so much be trying to look for ways to make money while performing vital services... but rather, for ways to fund the performance of vital services without trampling on anyone's rights.

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby Eternal Density » Wed Nov 13, 2013 6:11 am UTC

addams wrote:
Spoiler:
BlitzGirl wrote:We OTTers have plenty of our own invented words to amuse us, so don't worry, addams. :wink:

Klear wrote:
addams wrote:I was reading some of the Thread (...)

I'm pretty sure that capitalized Thread is already taken by... that other Thread on this forum.

Not really. We don't isolate the "Thread" in the name - we're more likely to refer to it by the acronym OTT at this point. And we're still quite prone to calling it a needle-pulled thing. :)

Thank you for permission to use words.

You have invented another language?
Good on you.

People do get an important sense of self from sharing words.
I am so glad you have that pleasure.

Bells? You have cake.
Do you ever ring bells?

oops. This is Ayn Random's Thread.
Ayn Rand. So funny. People took her seriously? Why?
No! Don't tell me. I have heard it. Don't take me that seriously.

Not unless you know me in 3D.
In 3D I can throw stuff at you and you know what that is like.

ech. Even in 3D I use those squishy toys.
They don't hurt. They are rarely a surprise.
I have absolutely no idea what you're trying to say. But English is the only language I know so I figure you must be ahead of me.
elasto wrote:Just because the universe is nothing but purposeless indifference, it doesn't mean humans can't derive meaning and pleasure from how they affect those around them, and can't judge actions to be moral or immoral on the same basis.

Like currency, our lives and actions have value because others value them: We derive meaning and pleasure from how others derive meaning and pleasure from us. And, like currency, that's a solid enough foundation to build a life on. An external scaffold might theoretically provide a stronger support, but it's pretty much indistinguishable in practice.
That sounds more like circular reasoning to me.
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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby Kit. » Wed Nov 13, 2013 7:23 am UTC

Eternal Density wrote:I don't understand how that can be consistent with:
Richard Dawkins wrote:The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference.
and
Richard Dawkins wrote:This is one of the hardest lessons for humans to learn. We cannot admit that things might be neither good nor evil, neither cruel nor kind, but simply callous – indifferent to all suffering, lacking all purpose.

There's a big leap of faith from "we can expect Universe to be indifferent" to "we shall expect humans to be indifferent". I have seen no indications that Dawkins is willing to make this leap.

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby ucim » Wed Nov 13, 2013 2:49 pm UTC

Even if "the Universe" has no "intrinsic meaning", each of us can give purpose and meaning to our own lives. It's just that this purpose is invented - it is not absolute. Touting it as an absolute moral imperative would be an error in that case.

Jose
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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby fifiste » Sun Nov 17, 2013 7:33 pm UTC

Yeah I don't get it why some people get so angsty and whatnot at the idea of no intrinsic meaning. About constructed meaning - why would it be any way worse?
Is a hole in the ground so much more awesome when it is just there vs. if I go and dig one? Is living in a house somehow less than living in a cave?

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby addams » Sun Nov 17, 2013 7:49 pm UTC

Is a hole in the ground better when it, just, appears?
Or; Better when it is dug by human hand?

The answer to that one depends upon the hole.

Is it better to live in a Cave or a House?
The answer to that one depends upon how it is decorated and maintained. right?

I have seen some fancy caves. Some are Rock on three sides and lovely windows with seats on the fourth wall.
Nice. Electricity is such a nice touch. What do you think?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby fifiste » Sun Nov 17, 2013 8:08 pm UTC

I think a cool-ass cave is cool.
If it ain't though, it's yours to make it so.
Drag some wire, install some lighting.

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby addams » Sun Nov 17, 2013 9:09 pm UTC

fifiste wrote:I think a cool-ass cave is cool.
If it ain't though, it's yours to make it so.
Drag some wire, install some lighting.

Like ancient Humans did. Good idea.

What do you think they ate?
How? How did they eat?

Did they eat while sitting around a fire,
like it is a really boring TV?

Well? Or; Did they stop and look at the view while they ate?
A Well appointed cave, might be nice. If it has a view.

I saw a documentary about some caves in the Middle East.
There was evidence of human habitation. Long ago human habitation.

Do some of those stories make you wonder? It makes me wonder.
How can people live in one country for ForEver and not know about what is up in those caves a mere 200 km from town?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby Eomund » Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:47 am UTC

fifiste wrote:I think a cool ass-cave is cool.


I'm sorry, I couldn't resist.

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Re: 1277: "Ayn Random"

Postby addams » Sun Nov 24, 2013 3:02 am UTC

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3u8Jjth81_Q

Ayn Rand is still on YouTube.
She is not dead and gone.

Here she is in all her glory.
I do not care for her outlook.

She says Selfishness will save the World.
That is funny shit. Do you think it is funny? I do! I do!

People can be wrong and more than get away with it.
Who cares what some silly little old lady thinks?

She would be in her Heaven, today. right?
Fuel was less than 1$ per gallon. That is cheep.

She might be as surprised by the Marketing Majors as I am.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.


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