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sam the moderately wize
February 2nd, 2009, 01:27 PM
Two thought experiments:

1) Five patients in a hospital need organ transplants to survive. The only way to save them is to kill another, healthy person who is sitting innocently in the waiting room and use his/her organs. Do you kill the person?

I would say no, because it violates the principle that you should not use a thinking person as a means to an end without their consent, even if that end is helping other people.

2) An incredibly wealthy businessman will give £7 billion to provide clean water and education for villages in Africa, potentially saving and improving millions of lives - if you will shoot an innocent man.

What should I do?

rzm61
February 2nd, 2009, 01:39 PM
1) No.

2) Possibly.

tagnostic
February 2nd, 2009, 03:50 PM
1) No
2)Shoot the businessman

rzm61
February 2nd, 2009, 04:28 PM
2)Shoot the businessman

http://bbs.311.com/forums/images/dark_vb/smilies/clap.gif

Perna de Pau
February 2nd, 2009, 05:27 PM
These moral dilemas are not so difficult.

A development of the first one is:
a mad train is going down its rails and further down is a group of 5 persons who are going to be hit. Unless you divert the train to another rail where it would hit only one person. Would you do that?

If you reply yes imagine now that the only way of stopping the train was to throw something at it and that the only possibility was to throw a fat man who is beside you: what would you do?

The result is that everyone would say no to sacrificing one person to save five but most would agree to do exactly that if the case is presented in a different way.

Conclusions???

rzm61
February 2nd, 2009, 05:29 PM
Conclusions???

I'd let the train hit the group of five, cause what the fuck are they doing on the tracks anyway? :icon_rolleyes:

Perna de Pau
February 2nd, 2009, 05:30 PM
that is a stupid answer, not a conclusion

rzm61
February 2nd, 2009, 05:39 PM
You're a stupid answer.

tagnostic
February 2nd, 2009, 05:43 PM
it is not your decision to make
the morally responsible big guy
should throw himself at the train
if he chooses not to, that's his decision

Clark Nova
February 2nd, 2009, 06:12 PM
Two thought experiments:

1) Five patients in a hospital need organ transplants to survive. The only way to save them is to kill another, healthy person who is sitting innocently in the waiting room and use his/her organs. Do you kill the person?

I would say no, because it violates the principle that you should not use a thinking person as a means to an end without their consent, even if that end is helping other people.

2) An incredibly wealthy businessman will give £7 billion to provide clean water and education for villages in Africa, potentially saving and improving millions of lives - if you will shoot an innocent man.

What should I do?

1)no

2)myself

rzm61
February 2nd, 2009, 06:13 PM
Hey Clark!
Good to see you again.

Clark Nova
February 2nd, 2009, 06:15 PM
Hey Clark!
Good to see you again.
hi, I forgot this place existed until I saw it in my college history

rzm61
February 2nd, 2009, 06:21 PM
:icon_lol:

Yeah, we still exist. Always good to see a framiliar face posting again. Don't be a stranger.

Kabel
February 2nd, 2009, 07:27 PM
1) Five patients in a hospital need organ transplants to survive. The only way to save them is to kill another, healthy person who is sitting innocently in the waiting room and use his/her organs. Do you kill the person?

2) An incredibly wealthy businessman will give £7 billion to provide clean water and education for villages in Africa, potentially saving and improving millions of lives - if you will shoot an innocent man.
1) Of course not. The strongest survive.

2) Of course not. The strongest survive.

tagnostic
February 2nd, 2009, 07:30 PM
1) Of course not. The strongest survive.

2) Of course not. The strongest survive.

but the weak
have better
weapons

brutelord
February 2nd, 2009, 09:59 PM
I define right and wrong, by intent.Thus both are not morally wrong. This however does not dictate my actions. There are more variable to take into account.

1)No.

2)No. There is no guarantee that the money will be used properly or serve its purpose effectively.

winwun
February 2nd, 2009, 11:03 PM
There is no right or wrong -- all ethics are situational.

I defy ANYONE to postulate a situation that has iron-clad issues of right/wrong -- they do not/cannot exist.

brutelord
February 3rd, 2009, 02:52 AM
There is no right or wrong -- all ethics are situational.

I defy ANYONE to postulate a situation that has iron-clad issues of right/wrong -- they do not/cannot exist.
I disagree. Personally I think morals do not exist universally. Morals are personally defined (Though there are many influences that help dictate what we think is moral...). Thus if I say that something is completely wrong then it is in my view.

tagnostic
February 3rd, 2009, 07:55 AM
There is no right or wrong -- all ethics are situational.

I defy ANYONE to postulate a situation that has iron-clad issues of right/wrong -- they do not/cannot exist.

harm a child,
goto hell,
i've got
your
ticket:
anytime
you use your
experience, knowledge
or physical strength to take
advantage of someone else it is
wrong, be it child, kitten, puppy or anything else
morals are absolute (to me, in that sense)

that would be imho on right and wrong

djura
February 3rd, 2009, 11:35 AM
1. No
2. No, or maybe Yes, provided that my company is contracted to do the actual work, and I get to pick "innocent" person.

winwun
February 3rd, 2009, 01:16 PM
You are right, Tag - - I said "situation", not "action" -- I can see differences in the two.

tagnostic
February 3rd, 2009, 01:48 PM
sorry about the subtle diff,
i get a bit emotional about
some minor points, while i
can stand off and debate in
a detached fashion, any form
of bullying, to any degree
or level, chaps my tail :icon_razz:

sam the moderately wize
February 4th, 2009, 10:39 AM
The money is guaranteed to be spent as said. Please stop trying to pick holes in the thought experiment and tackle the moral issue head-on.

The second situation is analogous to the first one, but on a bigger scale. If you answered no to the first one, you should in theory answer no to the second. However, it seems like a mere moral self-indulgency to allow yourself to place the sanctity of the 'do not use people as unwilling means to an end' rule above the lives of thousands of innocent people.

winwun
February 4th, 2009, 12:52 PM
I'm with you on ALL that, Tag.

I was bullied as a child, and a few times, in helpless frustration I would explode in massive retaliation and the authorities took my action as "overkill", not trying to understand the underlying causes.

I was not a happy child, but have a comfortable handle on it all now . . .

Rothis
February 7th, 2009, 01:47 AM
Funny, sam. From where do you, or any of you for that matter, derive these "morals"? From society? Have you been conditioned to be repulsed by the acts of harming children, exploiting the weak, and "using thinking people as a means to an end"? I don't remember seeing anything like that in the CoG text anywhere.

I have an idea! use logic. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. I say kill the healthy one (especially if the other five can pay!). The businessman should also die, in the most horrific way possible, because he is obviously defying the "moral standards" of behavior this forum adheres to by denying/stopping clean water and education for tribes in Africa.


Srsly. All of you said no to the first question. Why? Because you feel that it would be immoral? using science and logic, the more beneficial situation is where 5 live (and the doctor gets paid) and one dies, and where the millions of people get water and education at the price of one man's life. Simple! Unless you count in morals (where do these flim-flam, lovey-dovey, emotionally-based, absurd illogical ideas come from anyway?) which screw up everything entirely.

Also: Let Africa Sink (http://www.theothersideofkim.com/index.php/essays/36/).

Kabel
February 7th, 2009, 02:40 AM
So we kill all the healthy people we need to, in order to save all the ill ones?

tagnostic
February 7th, 2009, 09:20 AM
in Star Trek,
the good of the many outweigh the needs of the few,

on planet earth
your not qualified to make that judgement

if you can't create life
what right do you have to take it?

(sorry, pissy mood)

djura
February 7th, 2009, 11:12 AM
I have an idea! use logic. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. I say kill the healthy one (especially if the other five can pay!).

But if you kill him, you'll burn in hell for ever and ever!

Perna de Pau
February 9th, 2009, 10:44 AM
Srsly. All of you said no to the first question. Why? Because you feel that it would be immoral? using science and logic, the more beneficial situation is where 5 live (and the doctor gets paid) and one dies

And why on earth is that the more beneficial situation? Who decides that it is?

In an overpopulated planet as ours I pretend that it is more beneficial that 5 die than just one.

You fell in the same error you were accusing others to have fallen in and your logic is as "illogical" as anyone else's.:)

Dementis
February 9th, 2009, 11:57 AM
1. NO unless the 5 are guaranteed to live healthy, happy lives afterwords.
2. Shoot some "innocent" asshole.

sam the moderately wize
February 10th, 2009, 12:22 PM
Funny, sam. From where do you, or any of you for that matter, derive these "morals"? From society? Have you been conditioned to be repulsed by the acts of harming children, exploiting the weak, and "using thinking people as a means to an end"? I don't remember seeing anything like that in the CoG text anywhere.

I have an idea! use logic. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. I say kill the healthy one (especially if the other five can pay!). The businessman should also die, in the most horrific way possible, because he is obviously defying the "moral standards" of behavior this forum adheres to by denying/stopping clean water and education for tribes in Africa.

If you go on a purely utilitarian philosophy, making judgements on the basis of the greatest good for the greatest number, then you would have to agree to:

1) Keeping a small percentage of the population as indentured slaves if it would create a net gain of happiness across the population as a whole.

2) Shooting innocent people who looked like they might be terrorists if it would create a net gain in life from the real terrorists shot.

3) Killing people who were old, disabled or mentally ill if it would reduce the burden on the young and healthy to the point that they could live in a utopian society with an overall gain in life and happiness.

Is your 'logic' always the best option? Please remember that you might have the misfortune to be born in one of the groups being discriminated against.

The point of these thought experiments is to try to find a point where utilitarian concerns become more important that absolute moral rules, as it is clear that utilitarianism alone won't create a morally good society.

Also: Let Africa Sink (http://www.theothersideofkim.com/index.php/essays/36/).

http://www.banksy.co.uk/drawing/images/tvmonster2.JPG

tagnostic
February 10th, 2009, 01:29 PM
logic lifts you above animals
heart makes you almost their equal

Rothis
February 16th, 2009, 06:55 AM
>>tag
Who are you to tell me I don't have that "right"? The OP must assume I do, because whether or not I shoot is also a choice.

>>djura
says who?

>>Perna
But wait! You, from your personal opinion, have a different idea what beneficial is! Your logic is also as illogical as anyone else too!

So, what now? Use morals? Who's morals? Mine, where obviously my logic stems from mine, or yours, which I just stated is also based on your morals!

>>Dementis
Who can guarantee that? No one.
Why do you type innocent in quotes?

[edit: two posts not replied]
>>sam
"Is your 'logic' always the best option?"
This is one of my points. But wait! What do you mean by "morally good"? You mean, what a european or american would consider morally good? Or the man that rules in one of the african countries, where his people starve and he lives in luxury? No one chooses to be evil. People live by their own rules that they consider to be right.

Who then, should pick the standards of a morally good society?
You? Why?
The majority? They've let this happen and continue.

And no, heart-string pulling and guilt trips with scribbled pictures won't change my mind about it. I know of the suffering that happens in Africa second-hand. My neighbor went there on a missionary trip, and shared his photos of the people there, and what happens to them on a daily basis. I still agree with the man who wrote that article.
The drawings--they do nothing!

tagnostic
February 16th, 2009, 11:51 AM
what "right" did
i tell you you don't have?
the right to logic
or the right to heart?

Tsar Phalanxia
February 16th, 2009, 09:43 PM
If you let your heart rule your head, you'll suffer a stroke.

tagnostic
February 16th, 2009, 09:45 PM
If you let your heart rule your head, you'll suffer a stroke.

same thing happens
when you let your
heart rule your
hand

Tsar Phalanxia
February 16th, 2009, 09:51 PM
Touché.

tagnostic
February 16th, 2009, 09:56 PM
I'll give you the
WIN
if you planned
that Pun

djura
February 17th, 2009, 09:40 AM
>>Rithis
Says GOD!

sam the moderately wize
February 17th, 2009, 01:32 PM
>>sam
"Is your 'logic' always the best option?"
This is one of my points. But wait! What do you mean by "morally good"? You mean, what a european or american would consider morally good? Or the man that rules in one of the african countries, where his people starve and he lives in luxury? No one chooses to be evil. People live by their own rules that they consider to be right.

Relativism. How I hate it. Your moral system says you should let everyone have their own moral systems. My moral system has moral absolutes. By claiming that there are no moral absolutes and at the same time claiming that everyone's morals are equally valid, you have created for yourself a deeply paradoxical system, and one that has no use in the real world. By condoning any moral system, you indirectly condone slavery, genocide, and the killing of children - and this is something that I cannot agree with, regardless of who is proposing it and however logical their reasons are. This is not because I have been indoctrinated with Western morals - although they may play a part in it - but because I have an evolved capacity for empathy which makes me take the moral choices that helped our species survive in the past.


Who then, should pick the standards of a morally good society?
You? Why?
The majority? They've let this happen and continue.

I say, we go with consience and empathy. We allow our inherited, inbuilt morals to shape our ehtical systems.


And no, heart-string pulling and guilt trips with scribbled pictures won't change my mind about it. I know of the suffering that happens in Africa second-hand. My neighbor went there on a missionary trip, and shared his photos of the people there, and what happens to them on a daily basis. I still agree with the man who wrote that article.
The drawings--they do nothing!

You missed the point of the drawing. Look at it again, and read the captions. Hell, go to banksy.co.uk and see it in context.

tagnostic
February 17th, 2009, 01:42 PM
well said Sam
+Rep

Perna de Pau
February 18th, 2009, 10:49 AM
I also agree with Sam, whose wisdom is more than moderate :)

Tsar Phalanxia
February 18th, 2009, 12:00 PM
I believe there to be a set of base morals, e.g. don't kill, don't steal which are detrimental to you and soceity as a whole. However, morals are ultimately relative, as although the murder of one stranger is obviously bad, it is preferable to the murder of ten strangers. I imagine it like a barrier that we shouldn't cross, and although we are sometimes pushed across that barrier by forces outside our control, we must resolve to spend as little time on the "bad side" as possible. Of course, this is when it gets fuzzy, with people's opinion of what is bad differing from one another. I take a very liberal view to this, as I feel that no institution has the right to enforce somebody elses view of morals upon you.

winwun
February 18th, 2009, 01:22 PM
Tsar, you are right about morals and ethics being situational.

I imagine there would arise a conflict if someone was trying to do something to me or take something from me, and their perception of the morals and ethics of the act differed from mine.

If possible, I would attempt to resolve the situation in my favor . . .

google_is_my_friend
February 25th, 2009, 08:46 AM
Five patients in a hospital need organ transplants to survive. The only way to save them is to kill another, healthy person who is sitting innocently in the waiting room and use his/her organs. Do you kill the person?
[/qote]

No, that starts the long and slippery slope of who is 'deserving'

djura
February 25th, 2009, 09:46 AM
If he's Krishna, he'll say YES!

winwun
February 25th, 2009, 12:48 PM
Only if he is a mangy-rat or a democ-rat.

Tsar Phalanxia
February 25th, 2009, 01:52 PM
If he's Krishna, he'll say YES!

You'll be stuck with a blue organs though :\

djura
February 26th, 2009, 09:13 AM
Only if he is a mangy-rat or a democ-rat.

I take it you're a Republi-can?

Tsar Phalanxia
February 26th, 2009, 10:40 AM
Reminds me of the two political parties in Futurama - The Fingerlicans and the Tastycrats.

winwun
February 26th, 2009, 05:05 PM
If you're not a Democrat at age 25, you have no heart, and if you're not a Republican by age 40, you have no brain . . .

Fallen Hero
February 26th, 2009, 05:53 PM
Five patients in a hospital need organ transplants to survive. The only way to save them is to kill another, healthy person who is sitting innocently in the waiting room and use his/her organs. Do you kill the person?
[/qote]

No, that starts the long and slippery slope of who is 'deserving'

Fuck you! I'm reading my philo texts right now, and this is what we are talking about. Bastard. :/

tagnostic
February 26th, 2009, 05:58 PM
I think you would have to be prescient to even consider that question,
who's to say what each of those people would do with thier respective lives?
would one of the 5 turn out to be a serial killer? Is the healthy one the person who might cure aids? If you can't answer what would happen in each of the lives under either of the solutions, then you are not qualified to make that decision.

Tsar Phalanxia
February 26th, 2009, 06:07 PM
If you're not a Democrat at age 25, you have no heart, and if you're not a Republican by age 40, you have no brain . . .

The original quote is with socialists and conservatives.

winwun
February 26th, 2009, 10:44 PM
There isn't likely anyone more loath to quote without giving credit, hating plaigarism with a passion, but some things really are such a basic, no-brain observation, that previous recounting of the thought is not pertinent.

Sort of like, in 20 degree weather, someone is surely going to say, "I'm cold", but they do not deserve to be referenced on subsequent phrasing of the same duh observation.

My statement in the previous post was made in much the same manner.

Likely, Oog and Aag, hunter and grower, were the originators of the concept . . .

Tsar Phalanxia
February 26th, 2009, 10:45 PM
I'm just saying. There's a difference between Democrats and Socialists.