Should all Humans be Equal?

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GE Morton
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

Post by GE Morton »

Sushan wrote: December 28th, 2021, 10:41 pm
Seemingly Mao and Jefferson had different views on equality. And Jefferson's one is more practical. But whatever came out from his mouth or written down in the declaration were either mere words, or the Black ppeople were not considered as humans.
Largely true. Not "as humans" --- they certainly recognized them as humans --- but not as moral agents. Throughout most of human history most tribes and ethnic groups did not recognize humans of other groups as persons with moral status equal to their own, but as "barbarians," and felt free to enslave them (if not exterminate them). Including Africans, who themselves kept slaves, and indeed, sold them to European slave traders. Virtually all of the Africans transported to the New World were sold to the slave traders by other Africans. Until it began to be questioned on moral grounds in the middle of the 18th century slavery was part of the common culture of the world, practiced nearly everywhere.

Jefferson opposed and condemned slavery, and called for its abolition, his entire life. So why did he keep slaves himself? Because he inherited them from his father, he was embedded in a society in which slavery was accepted, and because he he did not believe freeing them would be in their interest, given the status of blacks in Southern society at the time. He also believed blacks (with exceptions) could not be successfully integrated into white culture.
GE Morton
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

Post by GE Morton »

Sy Borg wrote: December 29th, 2021, 12:02 am
The word "United" was put into the USA's name by the winners of the Civil War to hammer home that the war was over and they had decided that the confederate states would come under their administration.
Huh?

The name "United Sates of America" was adopted in 1776:

"On Monday, September 9, 1776, the Congress moved to approve some important resolutions, including payments for the army. The fifth resolution read as follows: “That in all continental commissions, and other instruments, where, heretofore, the words ‘United Colonies’ have been used, the stile be altered for the future to the “United States.”

"John C. Fitzpatrick from the Library of Congress, back in 1920, explained the origin of “United Colonies” and the abbreviation “U.S.A.” in an article for the Daughters of the American Revolution magazine.

"Fitzpatrick said the words United Colonies were used by the Congress when it appointed George Washington as commander in chief in June 1775. The abbreviation U.S.A. had its origins as a way that government inspectors approved official gunpowder. Fitzpatrick said the army needed to have inspectors verify that gunpowder met standards, and it stamped “U.S.A.” on the casks as a mark, starting in August 1776,

"Also, the words “United States of America” appeared in the first draft of the Articles of Confederation on July 8, 1776, as it was submitted to Congress. The Articles weren’t ratified by the states until March 1781."

https://constitutioncenter.org/interact ... es-offici/
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Sy Borg
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

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I was under the impression that the Confederate States had split from the rest during the war, but were forced back in after they lost. Still you focused on the least important part of my post and missed the content:
Plenty of US administrations have encouraged egalitarianism, but the ideas have only interested about half the population, and not cleanly across blue and red lines. With mass communication, "tribal" affiliations form based on ideology rather geography. Also thanks to the manipulation of mass/social media, ever more poor people are voting for the parties that are most antithetical towards them, making election forecasts ever more difficult.

As populations grow, voters (if permitted to do so) will increasingly be forced to choose between a society based on security, order and control or one based on risk, chaos and freedom. The two poles are, to some extent, illustrated in the historically different approaches to overpopulation by China and India respectively, although the latter is leaning more towards authoritarianism in recent years under Modi.
GE Morton
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

Post by GE Morton »

Sy Borg wrote: December 29th, 2021, 1:41 am I was under the impression that the Confederate States had split from the rest during the war, but were forced back in after they lost.
Their legislatures adopted resolutions of secession, but those were never recognized as valid by the US Congress.
Still you focused on the least important part of my post and missed the content:
Plenty of US administrations have encouraged egalitarianism, but the ideas have only interested about half the population, and not cleanly across blue and red lines. With mass communication, "tribal" affiliations form based on ideology rather geography. Also thanks to the manipulation of mass/social media, ever more poor people are voting for the parties that are most antithetical towards them, making election forecasts ever more difficult.

As populations grow, voters (if permitted to do so) will increasingly be forced to choose between a society based on security, order and control or one based on risk, chaos and freedom. The two poles are, to some extent, illustrated in the historically different approaches to overpopulation by China and India respectively, although the latter is leaning more towards authoritarianism in recent years under Modi.
There is no conflict between freedom and control, as long as the freedom is limited by others' rights and the control is confined to protecting those rights.

Yes, many US administrations have paid lip service to egalitarianism (all the while realizing that is impossible to achieve), and in the process persuaded many that the world ("society") owes them a living. When that impossibility becomes manifest they will become rebellious. The US may well be on the decline side of the Tytler Cycle:
tytler.jpg
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Sy Borg
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

Post by Sy Borg »

The diagram and claim would be convincing if it was true. Snopes found it to be "Mostly False": https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/the-f ... -republic/
Professor Joseph Olson of Hamline University was not the source of any of the statistics or the text attributed to him above. When contacted via e-mail, Professor Olson confirmed that he had no authorship or involvement in this matter, and as Fayette Citizen editor Dave Hamrick wrote in January 2001:

I really enjoyed one recent message that was circulated extremely widely, at least among conservatives. It gave several interesting “facts” supposedly compiled by statisticians and political scientists about the counties across the nation that voted for George Bush and the ones that voted for Al Gore in the recent election.

Supposedly, the people in the counties for Bush had more education, more income, ad infinitum, than the counties for Gore.

I didn’t have time to check them all out, but I was curious about one item in particular… the contention that the murder rate in the Gore counties was about a billion times higher than in the Bush counties.

This was attributed to a Professor Joseph Olson at the Hamline University School of Law. I never heard of such a university, but went online and found it. And Prof. Olson does exist.

“Now I’m getting somewhere,” I thought.

But in response to my e-mail, Olson said the “research” was attributed to him erroneously. He said it came from a Sheriff Jay Printz in Montana. I e-mailed< Sheriff Printz, and guess what? He didn't do the research either, and didn't remember who had e-mailed it to him.

In other words, he got the same legend e-mailed to him and passed it on to Olson without checking it out, and when Olson passed it on, someone thought it sounded better if a law professor had done the research, and so it grew.

Who knows where it originally came from, but it's just not true.
Nor was it necessarily Tytler's idea: https://www.lorencollins.net/tytler.html

I think the idea is a seductive, but confused, idea. If the cycle is going to claim the Greeks and Romans, the former fell due to disunity (hello America), the latter largely due to disease and overreach, nothing to do with their fragile democracies.

Given that actual democracies have only existed for about 400 years, and most societies have never embraced democracy, the claim is based on a tiny sample size.

That "Tytler Cycle" is a good example of post hoc rationalisation designed to serve political polemic, noting only that which accords with assumption, ignoring other factors. It also seems that you are blaming democracy for the problematic cycle of fiat currency, a factor ignored by the misnamed "Tytler Cycle".
GE Morton
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

Post by GE Morton »

Sy Borg wrote: December 30th, 2021, 1:36 am The diagram and claim would be convincing if it was true. Snopes found it to be "Mostly False": https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/the-f ... -republic/

I think the idea is a seductive, but confused, idea. If the cycle is going to claim the Greeks and Romans, the former fell due to disunity (hello America), the latter largely due to disease and overreach, nothing to do with their fragile democracies.

Given that actual democracies have only existed for about 400 years, and most societies have never embraced democracy, the claim is based on a tiny sample size.

That "Tytler Cycle" is a good example of post hoc rationalisation designed to serve political polemic, noting only that which accords with assumption, ignoring other factors. It also seems that you are blaming democracy for the problematic cycle of fiat currency, a factor ignored by the misnamed "Tytler Cycle".
I agree; the causes of social breakdowns are far more varied and complex than that "cycle" (or any similarly simple analysis) captures.

It's also true that the temptations of fiat currencies are not unique to democracies. But in democracies the constantly-expanding demands for free lunches drives the government's fiscal policies.
GE Morton
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

Post by GE Morton »

Sy Borg wrote: December 30th, 2021, 1:36 am
That "Tytler Cycle" is a good example of post hoc rationalisation designed to serve political polemic, noting only that which accords with assumption, ignoring other factors. It also seems that you are blaming democracy for the problematic cycle of fiat currency, a factor ignored by the misnamed "Tytler Cycle".
Here's an interesting take on political divisions/social collapse:

https://reason.com/2021/12/27/americas- ... ing-point/
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

Post by Sushan »

LuckyR wrote: December 10th, 2021, 3:08 am
GE Morton wrote: December 9th, 2021, 11:07 pm
LuckyR wrote: December 9th, 2021, 1:50 am
You are correct because you are addressing reality (true equality/fairness in opportunity cannot exist), whereas most are addressing the desirable goal that opportunity should be equal.
Are you suggesting that equalizing the "reality" factors which create opportunities is a desirable goal? That seems to be implied by your claim there. How would you go about that? By, say, suppressing Alflie's talent for mathematics, so that the opportunities it affords him do not exceed those available to Bruno, who is innumerate? If that is not possible or defensible, is such a goal viable?

For many advocates, "equality of opportunity" is a rhetorical stand-in for material equality (equality of results), with the former term chosen just because the advocate thinks it more politically acceptable, or because he believes the former will guarantee the latter. The first reason is demagoguery, the second naive. And you can be sure that if "opportunities" (meaning absence of discrimination) were somehow equalized, yet substantial differences in outcomes persisted, those advocates would not be satisfied.

The rationale for setting material equality as a goal in the first place has never been clearly articulated. As Nozick once observed, "While there is no shortage of presumptions in favor of [material] equality, there is a surprising dearth of arguments supporting that presumption."
By the same token, let's see if you would apply the same "so what?" attitude on discrimination when it comes to "reverse discrimination".
There is a big difference between those, in that discrimination (of the sort at issue here) is largely exhibited privately, while "reverse discrimination" is a practice of government. Governments (in the US) are are barred from discriminating by the 14th Amendment. Private citizens are not.

As for my "so what" attitude, that characterization is gratuitous. I think discrimination based on sex, race, etc., is not only mean-spirited, but stupid, especially in economic arenas. But if people are presumed to have equal status as moral agents, then they must be left free to be as mean-spirited as they wish, and to do whatever stupid things they wish, as long as they violate no one else's rights --- real rights, not legislated, fiat "rights." They are not slaves, and others are not their masters. No one has any (real) right to enter into a relationship, of any sort, with someone who does not wish to enter into it, regardless of the reason for the latter's reluctance.
If Alfie is good at math and Bruno is innumerate, I (and I believe everyone else) is fine with Alfie being much more likely to be hired as an accountant. I just want both kids to have solid math instruction in school. If Bruno flunks out, that's on him, not the system. Similarly, if Alfie is black and goes to a crappy inner city school and doesn't get any math instruction such that his awesome talent is wasted, that is a problem that the system needs to correct.

No suprise you're searching (with marginal to no success, btw) to find a "big difference" between discrimination and reverse discrimination (the majority of universities who attempted to practice it were private). Let me point out the "big difference" for you: the majority benefits from discrimination and minorities benefit from reverse discrimination.

After all the government doesn't practice anything, it's individuals who work in government, right? Just like the individuals who practice discrimination.
Alfie and Bruno inherited what they have and don't have according to natural selection or something else. But no one can help either of them now because anyone has to accept their inheritance or the genetics. Maybe Bruno is having skills in some other field and he has to be used in the relevant area. Yes, it is better if everyone have a job, but it is impossible to anyone to be suitable to any job.

Reverse Discrimination is a controversial subject. Many are for it as well as many are against it. Reverse or forward discrimination, it is discrimination. Even mentioning it means there IS discrimination. So the practical scenario is too far away from an ideal and a 'preferred-by-all' situation.
“There is only one thing a philosopher can be relied upon to do, and that is to contradict other philosophers”

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LuckyR
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

Post by LuckyR »

Sushan wrote: December 30th, 2021, 9:26 pm
LuckyR wrote: December 10th, 2021, 3:08 am
GE Morton wrote: December 9th, 2021, 11:07 pm
LuckyR wrote: December 9th, 2021, 1:50 am
You are correct because you are addressing reality (true equality/fairness in opportunity cannot exist), whereas most are addressing the desirable goal that opportunity should be equal.
Are you suggesting that equalizing the "reality" factors which create opportunities is a desirable goal? That seems to be implied by your claim there. How would you go about that? By, say, suppressing Alflie's talent for mathematics, so that the opportunities it affords him do not exceed those available to Bruno, who is innumerate? If that is not possible or defensible, is such a goal viable?

For many advocates, "equality of opportunity" is a rhetorical stand-in for material equality (equality of results), with the former term chosen just because the advocate thinks it more politically acceptable, or because he believes the former will guarantee the latter. The first reason is demagoguery, the second naive. And you can be sure that if "opportunities" (meaning absence of discrimination) were somehow equalized, yet substantial differences in outcomes persisted, those advocates would not be satisfied.

The rationale for setting material equality as a goal in the first place has never been clearly articulated. As Nozick once observed, "While there is no shortage of presumptions in favor of [material] equality, there is a surprising dearth of arguments supporting that presumption."
By the same token, let's see if you would apply the same "so what?" attitude on discrimination when it comes to "reverse discrimination".
There is a big difference between those, in that discrimination (of the sort at issue here) is largely exhibited privately, while "reverse discrimination" is a practice of government. Governments (in the US) are are barred from discriminating by the 14th Amendment. Private citizens are not.

As for my "so what" attitude, that characterization is gratuitous. I think discrimination based on sex, race, etc., is not only mean-spirited, but stupid, especially in economic arenas. But if people are presumed to have equal status as moral agents, then they must be left free to be as mean-spirited as they wish, and to do whatever stupid things they wish, as long as they violate no one else's rights --- real rights, not legislated, fiat "rights." They are not slaves, and others are not their masters. No one has any (real) right to enter into a relationship, of any sort, with someone who does not wish to enter into it, regardless of the reason for the latter's reluctance.
If Alfie is good at math and Bruno is innumerate, I (and I believe everyone else) is fine with Alfie being much more likely to be hired as an accountant. I just want both kids to have solid math instruction in school. If Bruno flunks out, that's on him, not the system. Similarly, if Alfie is black and goes to a crappy inner city school and doesn't get any math instruction such that his awesome talent is wasted, that is a problem that the system needs to correct.

No suprise you're searching (with marginal to no success, btw) to find a "big difference" between discrimination and reverse discrimination (the majority of universities who attempted to practice it were private). Let me point out the "big difference" for you: the majority benefits from discrimination and minorities benefit from reverse discrimination.

After all the government doesn't practice anything, it's individuals who work in government, right? Just like the individuals who practice discrimination.
Alfie and Bruno inherited what they have and don't have according to natural selection or something else. But no one can help either of them now because anyone has to accept their inheritance or the genetics. Maybe Bruno is having skills in some other field and he has to be used in the relevant area. Yes, it is better if everyone have a job, but it is impossible to anyone to be suitable to any job.

Reverse Discrimination is a controversial subject. Many are for it as well as many are against it. Reverse or forward discrimination, it is discrimination. Even mentioning it means there IS discrimination. So the practical scenario is too far away from an ideal and a 'preferred-by-all' situation.
Well under the standard situation the majority has an advantage and the minority has a disadvantage. Let's call that option 1.

Option 2 is equality, no one has an advantage.

Option 3 is the majority have advantages that naturally happen by way of history and the minority have some advantages mandated by policy.

I suspect most here would prefer option 2. Unfortunately, that is impossible. Therefore we have to choose between options 1 and 3. No surprise, folks in the majority pick 1 (without reverse discrimination) and minorities pick 3, with reverse discrimination.
"As usual... it depends."
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Re: Should all Humans be Equal?

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What do you mean by "equal"?
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