People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:08 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:The scientific method, as far as I know, does not leave room for conclusions based on their emotional implications.
It also, as far as everyone else can tell, doesn't leave room for to your strange notions of the proper application of logic.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby lutzj » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:11 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:it is unfortunate that people use emotions to make decisions about what the truth is rather than logic.


Emotions are often (not nearly always, but often enough to be significant) accurate where reason isn't, which is the main reason so many people are trying to demonstrate to you the inherent flaws of logic.

More importantly, emotion is much much much easier to use than rigorous reasoning.

If logic was consistently more effective at solving the problem of "what should I do" than emotion, we'd all have evolved into Vulcans by now.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Shivahn » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:18 am UTC

First of all, sorry for dropping in and out of the conversation. I have a somewhat busy schedule. Anyway..
lutzj wrote:More importantly, emotion is much much much easier to use than rigorous reasoning.

This is actually really important. Or really, that it's much much faster. We simple don't have time to analyze everything, and shortcuts that work okayishly work for well for handling non-essential tasks.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:27 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:The scientific method, as far as I know, does not leave room for conclusions based on their emotional implications.
It also, as far as everyone else can tell, doesn't leave room for to your strange notions of the proper application of logic.


Aside from the fact that that didn't respond to my criticism, the application of reason to observations pretty much is the scientific method.

lutzj wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:it is unfortunate that people use emotions to make decisions about what the truth is rather than logic.


Emotions are often (not nearly always, but often enough to be significant) accurate where reason isn't, which is the main reason so many people are trying to demonstrate to you the inherent flaws of logic.

More importantly, emotion is much much much easier to use than rigorous reasoning.

If logic was consistently more effective at solving the problem of "what should I do" than emotion, we'd all have evolved into Vulcans by now.

It's a good thing I'm not suggesting that logic should always be used to solve the problem "what should I do?" then.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zcorp » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:31 am UTC

lutzj wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:it is unfortunate that people use emotions to make decisions about what the truth is rather than logic.


Emotions are often (not nearly always, but often enough to be significant) accurate where reason isn't, which is the main reason so many people are trying to demonstrate to you the inherent flaws of logic.
No they aren't. Care to give an example? As your statement isn't true so you must mean different concepts by those words than is standard.

More importantly, emotion is much much much easier to use than rigorous reasoning.

If logic was consistently more effective at solving the problem of "what should I do" than emotion, we'd all have evolved into Vulcans by now.

Reason is arguably a worse motivator but it is certainly a far more accurate one. While it is less likely to get us to decide (when we have gaps in our knowledge to make the decision) it is more likely to get us to decide correctly. Correctly meaning getting us closer to the our goal.

-----
Edit: added this part.

Shivahn wrote:First of all, sorry for dropping in and out of the conversation. I have a somewhat busy schedule. Anyway..
lutzj wrote:More importantly, emotion is much much much easier to use than rigorous reasoning.

This is actually really important. Or really, that it's much much faster. We simple don't have time to analyze everything, and shortcuts that work okayishly work for well for handling non-essential tasks.

This is only true if we have insufficient knowledge to make a quick decision with reason or are not quick at the reasoning process. We have the capability to remember. And 'shortcuts,' by which you seem to be doing what feels right, result in mistakes with great frequency.

------
maybeagnostic wrote:Anyway, the problem would come if you tell me this and I have a different definition of some word in your sentence- I don't consider the thumb to be a digit for example.
...Which is the point of defining terms, not to mention standard and reasonable definitions. If I felt I needed go out of my way to attach the word digit to the concept I mean for the sake of this discussion I would do so. Luckily many people before us have taken the time to create technical definitions to ease our communication, and we have the ability to clarify meaning when problems in language come about.

None of this makes my statement untrue, even if that statement can be misunderstood.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:33 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:the application of reason to observations pretty much is the scientific method.
Scientific reasoning is generally inductive rather than deductive, and thus far throughout its entire history has led only to less wrong approximations, rather than the Truth.

It's a good thing I'm not suggesting that logic should always be used to solve the problem "what should I do?" then.
The basic point still stands: gut reactions are faster and easier than strict logical reasoning, and in our day-to-day lives tend to give results that aren't very different.

In other words, emotions are often more practical, which is evidently something you value.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:44 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:the application of reason to observations pretty much is the scientific method.
Scientific reasoning is generally inductive rather than deductive, and thus far throughout its entire history has led only to less wrong approximations, rather than the Truth.

The scientific method constantly approaches truth, although absolute truth may be an asymptote.

In other words, emotions are often more practical, which is evidently something you value.

In some situations, sure. When making important ethical and political decisions, absolutely not. They too often lead to poor results. Most people have very similar goals. If all groups were to apply reason to achieving those goals rather than emotion, we'd much more quickly come to a working solution. Instead we have people who believe incorrect things because they want to, because it makes them comfortable.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zcorp » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:52 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:The basic point still stands: gut reactions are faster and easier than strict logical reasoning, and in our day-to-day lives tend to give results that aren't very different.

In other words, emotions are often more practical, which is evidently something you value.

This isn't true. Often they are not more practical, and when they are more practical the acting party is often lucky or has had past experience that tempered their perception -and thus emotions- through induction (conditioning, training, what ever word you would prefer) or deeper reasoning.

Action and failure is often, if not generally, the less practical option to study and succeed. The balance comes from time, cost of failure and reward for success.



----
sourmìlk wrote:Most people have very similar goals. If all groups were to apply reason to achieving those goals rather than emotion, we'd much more quickly come to a working solution. Instead we have people who believe incorrect things because they want to, because it makes them comfortable.

Ugh....
No. Most people have some shared values and some conflicting values. Shared values should be reached through reason, but often are instead shared through common heritage. Conflicting values should be resolved through reason, but often are resolved through power. Often there is no reasonable solution to conflicting values as there is no Truth to which one is a superior goal, or even if their is agreement in the goal there is a lack of knowledge to achieve that goal resulting in different values in how to approach that goal.

People don't want to believe incorrect things and they are certainly not comfortable with it. It makes us incredibly unhappy in fact. Generally they do so because of social influence or a lack in thinking tools and knowledge to challenge those beliefs.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:55 am UTC

Values are means, not goals. Most people share the same goals, e.g. that people should be prosperous and happy and such.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zcorp » Thu Mar 08, 2012 12:58 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:Values are means, not goals. Most people share the same goals, e.g. that people should be prosperous and happy and such.

Then you don't understand what is meant by the word value.

Most people don't actually share that goal or value except at the highest level of abstraction which is all but useless. In that they disagree with what a person is, what happiness is, how to achieve happiness, where we should be achieving that happiness and the costs we should be able to incur on society or other individuals to achieve happiness. Not to mention the people, even it if isn't most, who just disagree with that as a goal to hold as valuable at all.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:01 am UTC

All those things can be ironed out via a logical analysis of what will lead to the most abstract goal, which is ultimately what people want. The most abstract goals are actually very useful because they're the foundation for ethical discussion. When we can agree that those are the goals we're trying to reach, ethical discussion becomes a discussion about how we can best do that.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby lutzj » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:03 am UTC

Zcorp wrote:
lutzj wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:it is unfortunate that people use emotions to make decisions about what the truth is rather than logic.


Emotions are often (not nearly always, but often enough to be significant) accurate where reason isn't, which is the main reason so many people are trying to demonstrate to you the inherent flaws of logic.
No they aren't. Care to give an example? As your statement isn't true so you must mean different concepts by those words than is standard.


An emotional "think of the children" response allows one to easily refute, for example, Swift's "Modest Proposal," whereas many logical analyses could lead one to eat babies.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:04 am UTC

If the arguments satirically proposed in A Modest Proposal could be properly defended via reason, I'd abide by them. Emotion might be quicker, but it only arrives at the best conclusion there coincidentally. I could also get there via reasoning, with more certainty in the conclusion.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby lutzj » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:08 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:If the arguments satirically proposed in A Modest Proposal could be properly defended via reason, I'd abide by them. Emotion might be quicker, but it only arrives at the best conclusion there coincidentally. I could also get there via reasoning, with more certainty in the conclusion.


The reason it's such effective satire is that Swift's thesis is defended with reasonable arguments while being abhorrent on a basic level.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:11 am UTC

I didn't say it would be easy to refute via reason.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Shivahn » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:15 am UTC

Zcorp wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:The basic point still stands: gut reactions are faster and easier than strict logical reasoning, and in our day-to-day lives tend to give results that aren't very different.

In other words, emotions are often more practical, which is evidently something you value.

This isn't true. Often they are not more practical, and when they are more practical the acting party is often lucky or has had past experience that tempered their perception -and thus emotions- through induction (conditioning, training, what ever word you would prefer) or deeper reasoning.

Action and failure is often, if not generally, the less practical option to study and succeed. The balance comes from time, cost of failure and reward for success.

Something often not being x doesn't mean they aren't often x.

Also, they're more practical sometimes because seriously, I'm not going to do a strict logical analysis of where I keep the pens over the course of the day to minimize the times I have to reach into the pen holder. Or how I pull the stickers off the roll to apply them to things, or any other number of things that are so mundane and trivial in time and calories spent doing that an analysis simply wouldn't be useful.

You say the balance is between time, cost of failure, and reward for success. This is true - it's just that the cost of failure for many everyday things is less than the reward for not bothering, and the reward for success is much less than the cost of planning.

I mean, of course we should try and reason through what'll be optimal for big decisions, but for day-to-day stuff? It tends not to really matter.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zcorp » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:18 am UTC

lutzj wrote:An emotional "think of the children" response allows one to easily refute, for example, Swift's "Modest Proposal," whereas many logical analyses could lead one to eat babies.

No, logical analysis does lead us to believe we should eat the babies to reduce suffering in that instance. But you are welcome to try to and whom ever told or taught that it could be doesn't understand logic, reason nor basic human psychology and biology. When you rest arguments on satirical premises there is no logic to be found, people don't enjoy eating babies because Swift says so.

Beyond that you didn't at all demonstrate my challenge. First you need to provide a goal to achieve before you can access accuracy of it, which you have not provided. Then you need to demonstrate how 'think of the children' is more accurate in reaching that goal than reason would be.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Shivahn » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:22 am UTC

Zcorp wrote:
lutzj wrote:An emotional "think of the children" response allows one to easily refute, for example, Swift's "Modest Proposal," whereas many logical analyses could lead one to eat babies.

No, logical analysis does lead us to believe we should eat the babies to reduce suffering in that instance. But you are welcome to try to and whom ever told or taught that it could be doesn't understand logic, reason nor basic human psychology and biology. When you rest arguments on satirical premises there is no logic to be found, people don't enjoy eating babies because Swift says so.

Beyond that you didn't at all demonstrate my challenge. First you need to provide a goal to achieve before you can access accuracy of it, which you have not provided. Then you need to demonstrate how 'think of the children' is more accurate in reaching that goal than reason would be.

Also, I am compelled to point out that a "fuck babies, I'm hungry" response could get people to eat babies. It's not like "think of the children" is the only emotional response someone could have in that instance - in fact, I'm pretty sure in many historical societies, the Modest Proposal wouldn't seem as particularly vile as it does to us.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zcorp » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:30 am UTC

Shivahn wrote:Something often not being x doesn't mean they aren't often x.
I meant to express that emotions without experience and reason to assess that experience are rarely more practical. A purely emotional and entirely non-rational being would behave less practically than what we have observed of a nearly entirely emotionless being.

Also, they're more practical sometimes because seriously, I'm not going to do a strict logical analysis of where I keep the pens over the course of the day to minimize the times I have to reach into the pen holder. Or how I pull the stickers off the roll to apply them to things, or any other number of things that are so mundane and trivial in time and calories spent doing that an analysis simply wouldn't be useful.

You say the balance is between time, cost of failure, and reward for success. This is true - it's just that the cost of failure for many everyday things is less than the reward for not bothering, and the reward for success is much less than the cost of planning.
Minimizing times you need to reach into the pen holder is not a rational goal. Nor is it one that is always trivial. UI design is often about click optimization and small changes in the number of clicks greatly affects the way in which people use tools. Building a system to accommodate your need of pens and the time it takes to get them out of the pen holder vs having they lay about and be clutter and various other factors could very easily give greater reward than the cost of planning it. This would of course depend upon context. Access and reliability are key factors in productivity, and companies pay a lot of money for research and implementation for small gains in that productivity.

I mean, of course we should try and reason through what'll be optimal for big decisions, but for day-to-day stuff? It tends not to really matter.

Except that lots of little things add up to big things, and there is value in improving those little things especially when they are done by thousands of people thousands, hundreds or even ten times a day.

While productivity optimization isn't something you may care about as an employee your employer certainly does, and studying how difficult it is to access your pens could very lead to improved productivity.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Shivahn » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:34 am UTC

Well, yeah, but I'm not designing an ergonomic office space for thousands of employees. It's certainly beneficial for someone else to do that, but then, that's not a day-to-day thing for them, that's their job. For the thousands of employees doing the work, the total distance their arm moves to get the pen every day isn't going to be close to the break-even point where it becomes worth sitting down and considering where to keep the pens. Especially for things where they might have to go read about something else to get the background to do it.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zcorp » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:36 am UTC

Shivahn wrote:Also, I am compelled to point out that a "fuck babies, I'm hungry" response could get people to eat babies. It's not like "think of the children" is the only emotional response someone could have in that instance - in fact, I'm pretty sure in many historical societies, the Modest Proposal wouldn't seem as particularly vile as it does to us.

I used his example of an appeal to emotion. I assumed in both cases it was a stand in for the general idea.

I don't disagree with the later nor does accounting for the social perception and acceptance of eating babies matter much at all. I was pointing out that no logical analysis leads us to it being acceptable to eat babies based on Swifts writing. Its premises are satirical and absurd, as they are intended to be, logic does not bring us to the conclusion that we should eat babies after analyzing it.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Shivahn » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:37 am UTC

I wasn't disagreeing with you, just pointing out that it's not like appeals to emotion are going to get consistent results, even in crazy scenarios.

Which is separate to the issue of whether making them is useful, of course.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zcorp » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:39 am UTC

Shivahn wrote:Well, yeah, but I'm not designing an ergonomic office space for thousands of employees. It's certainly beneficial for someone else to do that, but then, that's not a day-to-day thing for them, that's their job. For the thousands of employees doing the work, the total distance their arm moves to get the pen every day isn't going to be close to the break-even point where it becomes worth sitting down and considering where to keep the pens. Especially for things where they might have to go read about something else to get the background to do it.

I'm not disagreeing that there can be trivial decisions that you don't need, or this is little to no value, to analyze in depth. I'm disagreeing with the idea that emotions are often more practical than reason. I'm stating that they are rarely more practical than reason and that when they are perceived to be more practical they are generally backed by a lot of knowledge gained through reason.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby lutzj » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:49 am UTC

Zcorp wrote: I'm stating that they are rarely more practical than reason and that when they are perceived to be more practical they are generally backed by a lot of knowledge gained through reason.


Emotional decisions based on experience or knowledge are still emotional decisions. Humans get very little done on pure instinct.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:53 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:All those things can be ironed out via a logical analysis of what will lead to the most abstract goal, which is ultimately what people want.
How is logical analysis going to iron out the nature of fundamentally non-logical concepts like "person" and "happiness" (or more precisely the relative values of different kinds of happiness)?
Treatid basically wrote:widdout elephants deh be no starting points. deh be no ZFC.


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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:04 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:All those things can be ironed out via a logical analysis of what will lead to the most abstract goal, which is ultimately what people want.
How is logical analysis going to iron out the nature of fundamentally non-logical concepts like "person" and "happiness" (or more precisely the relative values of different kinds of happiness)?

We can use the definitions that best serve to work towards our goals.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:09 am UTC

Whose goals, though? Yours or theirs?
Treatid basically wrote:widdout elephants deh be no starting points. deh be no ZFC.


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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zcorp » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:11 am UTC

lutzj wrote:Emotional decisions based on experience or knowledge are still emotional decisions. Humans get very little done on pure instinct.

No, they are just that decisions backed by experience and knowledge and where that is insufficient our emotions assist is making a decision guided on those things. Suggesting that they are actions primarily governed by emotion is entirely disingenuous. They are primarily governed by experience and knowledge. And yes there are frequent occurrences where people behave entirely or primarily based on emotion and not accounting for experience or knowledge. The frequency of this behavior varies based on personality and stress.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby gametaku » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:29 am UTC

maybeagnostic wrote:
I'll bite, here is my true statement:

Given a statement that is trivially true, Griffin will prove it false.
You need a self-referential statement to run into a paradox. Your statement can be proven false by just telling Griffin a trivially true statement and having him not prove it false.
'If this statement is true Griffin will prove it is false, otherwise he will prove it is true.' should work.


Actually looking at it I should of said can prove it false and not will prove it false. I wasn't going after the paradox angle, since the statement would be false if he proved it to be false, and if he could not prove it to be false it would be false. So thus his remark about being able to to prove any true statement false, is incorrect.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby moiraemachy » Thu Mar 08, 2012 3:28 am UTC

Sourmilk, would you be comfortable with the assertion that your definition of logic is basically this one?
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 5:24 am UTC

moiraemachy wrote:Sourmilk, would you be comfortable with the assertion that your definition of logic is basically this one?

No, I'm talking about propositional logic.

gmalivuk wrote:Whose goals, though? Yours or theirs?

sourmilk wrote:ours
Terry Pratchett wrote:The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zcorp » Thu Mar 08, 2012 5:46 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:Whose goals, though? Yours or theirs?

sourmilk wrote:ours

Who is included in 'ours' and what about 'theirs?'

You're talking about logic and reason here, and how you value it. The least you could do is not require us to walk you through asinine and basic aspects of it...
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 5:56 am UTC

I thought the antecedent of "ours" was pretty clear there: everybody in a given discussion about ethics.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zamfir » Thu Mar 08, 2012 8:05 am UTC

So, in such discussion, the participants actually share the same goal, they just might not realize it? If that is true, it happens a lot. Is it possible that you might be mistaken about this, or only that everyone else is?
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 8:09 am UTC

It does happen a lot. In virtually every debate I've had (I know, I know, it's anecdotal), the end goal has been the same. It's been "determine truth" or "do what benefits people". Something along those lines. For a more empirical but more specific example, see a study (that I can't locate at the moment) showing that American democrats and republicans share most of the same goals, particularly in terms of wealth distribution, but just think of different means of accomplishing those goals.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Zamfir » Thu Mar 08, 2012 9:56 am UTC

Which seems to suggest that the direct means are very important, and abstracted goals not so much.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:58 pm UTC

sourmìlk wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:Whose goals, though? Yours or theirs?
sourmilk wrote:ours
But they're different, because we're already operating on the hypothesis that you don't define such central notions as "person" and "happiness" the same way.

sourmìlk wrote:the end goal has been the same. It's been "determine truth" or "do what benefits people".
Nominally, sure. But again: the actual meanings of "truth" and "benefit" and "people" may not be shared by all concerned parties.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby sourmìlk » Thu Mar 08, 2012 4:12 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:Whose goals, though? Yours or theirs?
sourmilk wrote:ours
But they're different, because we're already operating on the hypothesis that you don't define such central notions as "person" and "happiness" the same way.

A definition of "person" is usually a means to the end of benefitting everybody. As for happiness, I know people define it differently, but for the purposes of measuring it with respect to ethics, the only definition that matters are those of the people being affected. And see below: ethics doesn't necessarily have an objective answer because of these disagreements.

sourmìlk wrote:the end goal has been the same. It's been "determine truth" or "do what benefits people".
Nominally, sure. But again: the actual meanings of "truth" and "benefit" and "people" may not be shared by all concerned parties.

I've yet to see a person define "truth" as different from reality. And definitions of "benefit" are usually similar enough that people can agree on most things. I recognize that ethics doesn't always have an objectively true answer, but people agree on what it should do closely enough that it often does.

Zamfir wrote:Which seems to suggest that the direct means are very important, and abstracted goals not so much.

In what people feel is emotionally right, sure. But as far as logically determining what one should do with respect to ethics, no.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby Griffin » Thu Mar 08, 2012 7:34 pm UTC

This is only true if we have insufficient knowledge to make a quick decision with reason or are not quick at the reasoning process.

We always have insufficient information, working through an algorithm composed almost solely of various shortcuts. Cognitive shortcuts are, quite literally, the only way we are able to think about things at all - at the very least, we approximate, and more foten than not we make significant assumptions and fill in large gaps for even basic decisions.

This works, because those shortcuts worked in the past and things that worked in the past tend to keep working, but there is nothing "logical" about it. Perfect logic is impossible in regards to making decisions relating to the real world, because our very minds are running on imperfect hardware. Luckily for us, imperfect logic, or "reason", is still an incredibly useful shortcut in aiding us to reach our goals. Emotion is the same. Both are, ultimately, cognitive tools.

I'll bite, here is my true statement:
Given a statement that is trivially true, Griffin will prove it false.

I honestly don't think a future type prediction can really be considered a trivially true statement. I wouldn't call it false, simple... undetermined? Invalid? There's not really much logic there guaranteeing I'll take any sort of action, anyways.
Even were it correct, I could choose to parse this statement with a logical system that doesn't preclude the possibility of statements being both true and false simultaneously. Doing so wouldn't be particularly useful for any purpose other than dealing with statements like yours, of course.

Huh? You stating meaningless and thoughtless things while pretending there is depth.
I currently have 5 digits on each hand, this is true. This is Truth. Tell me in which 'context' this is not true.

I have no particular reason to believe you. There are people in the world without five digits on each hand. Believing such a statement requires several levels of assumptions and beliefs. If we're ignoring the value of default axioms and only working with that with which we can logically arrive (a position which my post was meant to point out the absurdity of), there are multiple ways we can go about showing your statement is false.

First: The assumptions that all your fingers are digits. Change that to leave out thumbs, as mentioned previously, and we're golden. Second, and perhaps more apt, remove the assumption that you have any desire to tell us the truth. Replace it with the assumption that you intend to deceive us. There are people in the world without 5 fingers per hand, after all - if you are one of them, and lying to us for whatever reason, your statement is obviously false. Do we have any particular reason to believe this? No. But we have no logical reason to believe you are being honest, either. We have insufficient information to tell. The most we can say is that, based on experience, your statement is likely to be true.

Ah, but perhaps you mean from your own personal point of view? That gets a bit trickier, because the fundamental emotions and axioms of the truth of personal experience are hard to counter. But, for a moment, think - are you aware of the existence of people who believe they have more or fewer limbs than we perceive them to have? They exist. You can look them up. You are making the inherently emotional decision that your own personal observations are faithful representations of the world, despite the many pieces of evidence that our senses are flawed, and the evidence that there are other people in the world who do not share your perceptions.

There is no logical way to derive the fact that you have 5 fingers without the base trust in the functioning of your senses - which, lacking any sort of outside context, precludes the ability for you to apply logic to it. See the classic "brain in a jar" scenario - a scenario in which you have no digits at all, I might add. But we don't even need to go that far.

Who is to say that you "have" these digits at all? Why do they belong to you? Why are they YOUR hands and not, for example, your parents? And this is all for a very basic decision.

Or, at an even more basic level, we can assume the application of a different logical system with different logical rules, and render your statement either meaningless or false, as we wish. If we drop the assumption that our logical system needs to be consistent, for example, your trivially true statement can easily become trivially false as well as trivially true at the same time.

Anyways, I'm probably rambling here. My point is - yes, this is all fucking meaningless, I'm not "pretending it has depth" because we, as humans, tend do the smart thing and not wait for logic to hand us meaning, because it won't. Logic can tell us one thing and one thing alone:
"If our premises are true (including the premise that both our logic is valid and our logical system is sound), then these other things are true"

That's it. It can never be used to determine the truth of anything in a vacuum - only in terms of the truth of the other things, and only within the scope created by the logical system.
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Re: People choose emotions over reason, no one is surprised

Postby addams » Thu Mar 08, 2012 7:55 pm UTC

Seven internet pages of that.
What I came away with is:
Yes. Sometimes it it Turtles all the way down.
Yes. Sometimes the heavens revolve around two people on the beach of a little planet on the outer arm of the Milky Way. The Universe does not care what gender they are. The Universe does not care what color they are; Not even that they are the same species.
Ahhh! Truth Tables freak me out, because, they are so wrong so often.
Yes. Logic allows us to preserve truth, but, not generate it.

Truth has changed and will change again.
To kill and then eat people both young and not so young to give life to more other people or to make the rain fall was considered to be true for a very long time.

To die in battle far from home and to kill people in that far away place is logically supportable as a greater good. Emotionally I respond to it as false.

This forum has some very well educated people typing away in loops with Sourmilk. He is a lucky Sourmilk.

Logic and Critical Thinking are very nice. They are tools that allow us to communicate with one another. But; There is nothing like the fun of something that does not make any sense on the surface, but, makes deep emotional sense.

42 is the big answer. 41 is go sit by a lake. 41 is a good answer.

Let people love who they love. The soft animal self knows.
That is emotional only, yet, it makes logical sense.

Oh! And; Not all married people are monogamous.
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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