May 06, 2004

A Comment &My Day

This entry began as a comment to a string about Madonna on Ride the White Pony. There, a couple of women are trying to defend each other in their hatemongering of Madonna; something that I never allow anyone to do to anyone without just cause and circumspection (unless it's Yoanna or Camille from America's Next Top Model because I hate those bitches).

I just don't see how, even if Madonna is "partially" responsible for "12-year-olds running around wearing thongs and low-rise pants", she can be responsible enough for you to hate her so much. Other people in entertainment and media do things as lewd, shocking, manipulative and attention-seeking in the name of money and fame, but you chose Madonna to pick on for some reason and single her out as THE youth-corrupting evil that must be put to shame and discredited.

I do not believe that she has the effects you claim that she does (even partial ones) since her popularity among the age group you're concerned with has seriously declined since I was in that age group, and since no one and nothing in the media has that effect. Not even "violence" or "sex" as general themes and images have that effect, so how can you say that any celebrity, no matter how infamous or pervasive she is/was, has such an effect? People tend to dramatically overrate the effect that media has on other people, while claiming that they themselves are unaffected by it for one reason or another. This is known as the "third-person effect" theory in the field of media studies and it is the only media effects theory truly corroborated by any objective, well-conducted study. This essentially means that the most pervasive effect of media on people is that it makes them think it adversely affects others. As I attempted to explain in my (above) analysis of the MORAL TAINTEDNESS metaphorical schema, this is a perfectly logical conclusion when you consider the intuitive abstract reasoning process involved in human understanding of communication and information transfer in general. However, my main point was that, as a responsible adult, capable of and maybe even obligated to look at issues objectively and with an informed mind, one should attempt to view situations outside of this inherent framework and look at other aspects of issues.

As Lakoff details in Moral Politics, one of the fundamental differences between liberals and conservatives is that conservatives are much less likely to reason and/or look outside their intuitive moral framework, to ask other questions that might reveal issues that their framework simply is not capable of addressing in a manner not a priori dictated by that framework. Liberals on the other hand, are much less likely to take anything at face value and judge it according to strict moral principles. This scares conservatives since it gives them the idea that liberals have entirely lose moral that are bendable in any direction for any reason, or maybe liberals don't have moral at all. This is obviously not true. Even the hardest of criminals and the most insane people have moral reasoning abilities, since it all is just the complex relationship between the way you conceptualize a thing, how you feel about it and its practical effects on you. Anyway, liberals have a tendency to look at things from a variety of perspectives and according to various sets of criteria, making the possibilities of their interpretations and conclusions virtually limitless. This is the heart of liberalism and the reason why Democrats can never seem to agree on anything but Republicans are so good at presenting a "united front". Liberals can be on the same side as each other and still sound like they're arguing since they're trying to hash out differences from different points of view while a liberal-conservative debate is usually about how the conservative sees a thing as a open-and-shut issue while the conservative will see it as something open for debate and worth discussion and examination.

As you can see, we will never agree since we speak a different moral language. You are glad to keep working within your framework since it has served you and all that you know so well for so long. You are proud of your moral principles to the point of attempting to force them on others since you genuinely believe that they are best for all. You may say that I'm naive (there's that age card I was talking about), but I say that you are the one wearing blinders, but you don't even know it. I know I don't know everything, but I've made it my mission in life to find stuff out; to ask questions and try to reason things out for myself rather than relying on someone else's version of what I should think and feel about particular things just because that's the way it "should" be and/or always has been. You say Madonna is bad. I say, yeah, but why? is she really? how so? how much? is she good in some ways? in what ways has she had a good effect on me? a bad effect? can/does she really affect others? how so? how much? does it really matter? This is why liberals say conservatives are judgmental. Even if a conservative checks an issue against every criterion on her list before arriving at a conclusion, the list is not nearly as long, varied, objective or contrary as a liberals list would be. We can read profound insights into Madonna's actions and career because we can see them and embrace them. Just as we can see the possible harms of things you see as clearly good, we can see possible good in things you dismiss as purely bad and valueless. I like my view of the world; I feel like I really see it for the first time with my own eyes and I think very few things can be classified exclusively as "good" or"bad". Life isn't that simple and reducing it to such a level is unrealistic and narrow-minded.

P.S. Why don't you get off your ass and actually inform yourself about media effects before jumping to conclusions about the sources of our "problems" with young girls today, and spreading hatred and intolerance.

P.P.S. I finally checked out Flea Dip's site. This is the story of how she came to hate Madonna: I was about 12 years old at the time, and I was at a friend's home, walking through the den, when the music video on the t.v. set caught my eye. There was some trashy and unkempt- looking woman on the screen writhing around, running her hands over her body in a suggestive manner, and singing about virginity and sex. I was totally repulsed and thought it was sick and tasteless; I honestly did not know it was Madonna -- the same Madonna of Borderline and Holiday, who I happened to like. I asked my friend, "Who is that slut in the video?" My friend, of course, informed me, much to my shock, that it was, in fact, Madonna. My opinion of Madonna went down to absolute zero at that very instant. I find it sad that all these years later she still feels so haunted by Madonna, as if she's everywhere all the time or something. Sure, she was huge in the 80's and early 90's, but I'm sure she couldn't have been "inescapable". I don't know where you live or what you're watching, but this Madonna overexposure may be due to your own obsession with hating her, more than her actual presence in the media. Perhaps you should seek counseling about this. Also, I found your side comment about how all the feminist papers on Madonna were by lesbian or bisexual women very offensive. What are you insinuating? *You* obviously don't stand for women's rights either if you can think that way and the way you think about Madonna. You don't stand for a woman's right to be free, you stand for them to be the way that you believe they should be. To quote a famous (and brilliant) gay man: "Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live." Oscar Wilde

IN OTHER, AND FAR MORE IMPORTANT NEWS...
I had my first final today: Civil Procedure. I think it went well despite the fact that my computer refused to run the exam software without randomly closing it at will, so I was forced to hand-write the exam. I was really upset and don't feel I did as well as I could have done if I had been able to go back and change stuff about my answers and correct any mistakes, and Marcus probably won't be able to read my handwriting. However, I bet it won't affect my grade that much, if any. Or... at least... I hope so...

I also went to the A's-Yankee's game with some peeps: Click below to see pictures (what can I say, I'm a picture pusher)

1) $paginate_current_page = 1; $paginate_sections = array( 0 , 1); $paginate_top_section = $paginate_sections[$paginate_current_page-1]+1; $paginate_bottom_section = $paginate_sections[$paginate_current_page]; } else { $paginate_top_section = 1; $paginate_bottom_section = 1; } $paginate_self = '&' . $_SERVER['QUERY_STRING'] . '&'; $paginate_self = preg_replace("/&page=[^&]*&/", "&", $paginate_self); $paginate_self = substr($paginate_self, 1, strlen($paginate_self) - 1); if($paginate_self == '&') $paginate_self = ''; else $paginate_self = htmlentities($paginate_self); $paginate_self = basename($_SERVER['PHP_SELF']) . "?${paginate_self}page"; ?> Posted by Kristina at May 6, 2004 02:39 AM
Comments

"Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live." Oscar Wilde

Problem is, this is wrong. Selfishness is both living as one wishes to live and asking others to live as one wishes to live. The key is "as one wishes to live". HTH.

Posted by: Geoff at May 6, 2004 10:15 AM

Huh? So it's inately selfish to live according to your own wishes? I don't think so. Problems only arise when your way of living unduly imposes itself on others. In those instances, one should not demand that the other concede to their way without argument. This is selfishness; acting on the belief that your ways are better for everyone in the event that your ways and another's clash. Simply living as you want to live is a right that all human beings (should) have. Being controlled physically or phisolophically is an evil people around the world have constantly struggled against. It is not selfish to ask for and use what is rightfully yours.

Posted by: Kristina at May 6, 2004 10:53 AM

"So it's inately selfish to live according to your own wishes?"

Yep. In fact, that is the essence of selfishness. The senses offer us the fruit of pleasure and we pluck it again and again, milking the pleasure from the fulfillment of our own wishes irrespective of what that fulfillment gives to others.

If you are living based solely on what YOU wish, you don't give a shit about whether other people dislike how your choices impact them. And if you do give a shit about whether they are impacted by your choices, you aren't really living according to your wishes (because you are taking their wishes into account).

Better, I say, to simply admit that we are all selfish and get on with it. Why pretend otherwise?

"Problems only arise when your way of living unduly imposes itself on others."

The problem is that all ways of living unduly impose themselves on others. We impact each other with our actions. The more you live for yourself and don't give a shit how your actions impact others, the greater your selfishness.

"This is selfishness; acting on the belief that your ways are better for everyone in the event that your ways and another's clash."

Yes, that too is selfishness. But it is selfishness because it reflects an attempt to order the world in accordance with one's desires. Even Jesus Christ wanted to order the world according to HIS desires. He was a selfish bastard.

Posted by: Geoff at May 6, 2004 12:18 PM

When did religious people invade our little atheist haven? Who pulls out Jesus and "the senses offer us the fruit of pleasure and we pluck it again and again" against someone who just wrote what I wrote above. Did you read it, Geoff? Did you understand it? I don't think you did because you would be able to see that you think these things because of your strict moral philosophy. Do you deny it's possible to conceptualize "selfishness" other than within the narrow view of it that you hold; that selfishness is living as one wishes to live, which inately impedes the interests of others. Is there really no way for one to live according to his wishes and also not trample the reciprocal right of his neighbor? To say yes, would be an a priori assumption based on the conservative belief that taking care of one's self is inately selfish. Liberals typically take the stance that taking care of yourself is quite the opposite, since if you were to not take care of yourself, someone else might have to and you would be imposing a burden on them. This is something that conservatives should embrace since they are big fans of the concepts of self-reliance and self-determination (at least in name, but rarely in actual practice since it is impossible to be human, be truly self reliant and survive). It follows from this belief that taking care of yourself is giving is that you should not take from others while accomplishing this goal. How can you succeed at lifting possible burdens on someone while burdening them in the process? This implies that a system of give and take depending on circumstances should be used to determine when to give in and when to stand your ground. There is no clear, reliable, all-purpose line between right/wrong, good/bad, selfish/unselfish that gives you the right to judge others without knowing all the facts or even being sure that your causal analysis of a particular social problem is correct or even plausible. This kind of a priori moral reasoning is detrimental in call kinds of social and political contexts since it essentially "jumps to conclusions" by assuming that there is just one correct view that can be utilized in assessing an issue. Conservatives won't debate, but will just come up with sayings and cliches and folk beliefs to refute anything you say b/c that is all their moral belief system is based on; not information and the pursuit of truth.

Posted by: Kristina at May 6, 2004 01:26 PM

"When did religious people invade our little atheist haven?"

I am an atheist.

"Who pulls out Jesus and "the senses offer us the fruit of pleasure and we pluck it again and again" against someone who just wrote what I wrote above."

Metaphors beyond your limited intellectual grasp?

"I don't think you did because you would be able to see that you think these things because of your strict moral philosophy."

And what strict moral philosophy might that be? I merely pointed out that in acting to gratify desire a person must, as a matter of logic, act selfishly. This is not a moral philosophy because I am not advocating any particular morality.

"Do you deny it's possible to conceptualize "selfishness" other than within the narrow view of it that you hold; that selfishness is living as one wishes to live, which inately impedes the interests of others."

From the dictionary: "seeking or concentrating on one's own advantage, pleasure, or well-being *without regard for others*".

That coincides precisely with what I said. Can you "conceptualize" it differently? Sure, if you want to change the definition beyond what it is now.

"Is there really no way for one to live according to his wishes and also not trample the reciprocal right of his neighbor? To say yes, would be an a priori assumption based on the conservative belief that taking care of one's self is inately selfish. Liberals typically take the stance that taking care of yourself is quite the opposite, since if you were to not take care of yourself, someone else might have to and you would be imposing a burden on them."

There is a difference between an a priori assumption and a logical inference. By definition, a selfish act is an act calculated to obtain individual pleasure. When a person lives to satisfy his desires, it is impossible that he won't meet that definition.

"This is something that conservatives should embrace since they are big fans of the concepts of self-reliance and self-determination (at least in name, but rarely in actual practice since it is impossible to be human, be truly self reliant and survive)."

Not sure why this has anything to do with the definition of selfishness and the logical possiblity of living beyond selfishness while seeking self gratification.

"It follows from this belief that taking care of yourself is giving is that you should not take from others while accomplishing this goal."

Huh? Living the life one wishes implies "not taking from others"? Talk about an a priori assumption. Living the life one wishes means simply living the life one wishes. For a murderer that would mean one thing, and for a nun that might mean another. But when you introduce the qualification that you shouldn't take from others, you are saying that you shouldn't live the life you wish unless it coincides with *your* conception of right and wrong. Nice of you to slip your morality in the back door.

"How can you succeed at lifting possible burdens on someone while burdening them in the process? This implies that a system of give and take depending on circumstances should be used to determine when to give in and when to stand your ground. There is no clear, reliable, all-purpose line between right/wrong, good/bad, selfish/unselfish that gives you the right to judge others without knowing all the facts or even being sure that your causal analysis of a particular social problem is correct or even plausible."

And what if the life you wish to live is a life of judging others? Are you going to judge the person who wishes to live that life? Are you going to tell her that she shouldn't live that life? Are you making a morally absolute statement here?

"This kind of a priori moral reasoning is detrimental in call kinds of social and political contexts since it essentially "jumps to conclusions" by assuming that there is just one correct view that can be utilized in assessing an issue."

Exactly. So why are you jumping to the conclusion that there can only be one correct view on the topic of whether it is okay to judge others?

Posted by: Geoff at May 6, 2004 01:52 PM

Fuck your dictionary definition. Wasn't I just saying that things aren't that simple and you can't make decisions based on things based on such narrow views of concepts. The dictionary doesn't define anything except common usages of words in basic contexts; it is not the end-all, be-all of meaning. If that were the case, then there wouldn't be any need for intellectual debate on anything ever since you could just look at the dictionary for the answers. Webster is apparently in the business of setting philisophy in stone.

I'm not assuming anything other that the fact that you shouldn't make assumptions. And you obviously don't know what I'm talking about and this conversation is boring me. ZZZZZZZZZZZ... It's easy to pick apart everything I say with some simplistic retort and narrow-minded "truth" about the world and human cognition, which you know nothing about. I think this topic is beyond *your* intellectual grasp, not mine.

Posted by: Kristina at May 6, 2004 03:21 PM

Indeed, it is easy to pick apart everything you say because what you say is full of holes.

You believe that people should live as they wish and then you turn around and say that they should not judge each other--as if some people don't wish to spend their lives judging.

This is just one example of your incoherent babble.

Posted by: Geoff at May 6, 2004 04:03 PM

Since when did anyone spell your name with a "G-E-O-F-F," the truly inferior spelling of "Jeff?"

I was loving the world, contemplating world peace and inner satisfaction after spending time with my friends, until your whiney babble interfered.

You do not understand happiness. You only know judgement. Your limbic brain has no idea what you neocortex is saying.

Posted by: cody at May 6, 2004 10:37 PM

Happiness is the feeling that power is growing.

Posted by: Geoff at May 6, 2004 11:10 PM

Ooooh...bask in Geoff's might power to annoy Kristina on a silly little blog page!!! Truly he is a being of might and glory! Revel! Tremble! He possesses a greatness of which normal people like us can only DREAM!

Fucking ponce.

Posted by: Renee at May 7, 2004 09:42 AM

I would love to have a face-to-face conversation with Geoff and have him constantly repeat the last sentence I said ( using his hands to make the quotation marks) and then think of something completely unoriginal and slightly illogical to say in reposnse. Geoff, you're not really debating someone when you reiterate her words in tiny phrases to break up her argument so the entire point becomes drowned out by your weaker argument. Keep trying buddy.

Posted by: Susan at May 7, 2004 12:37 PM

Thanks guys, I can't handle this retard's retarded agruments all by myself; I'm supposed to be studying for finals.

Geoff, you are evidently completely incapable of understanding (at least) 2 things:

1. When I said, It follows from [the] belief that taking care of yourself is giving is that you should not take from others while accomplishing this goal. How can you succeed at lifting possible burdens on someone while burdening them in the process? This implies that a system of give and take depending on circumstances should be used to determine when to give in and when to stand your ground. There is no clear, reliable, all-purpose line between right/wrong, good/bad, selfish/unselfish that gives you the right to judge others without knowing all the facts or even being sure that your causal analysis of a particular social problem is correct or even plausible you either didn't read it or understand it. All that means is that if you're actually following the liberal moral schema known as NURTURANT PARENT MORALITY (don't even try to attack that b/c you know nothing about cognitive science or metaphorical analysis), you will consciously attempt to not interfere with the interests of others in the pursuit of your own happiness. Yes, this is not possible in MANY situations, but what matters is the dialogue, the give-and-take and consideration of various points and the willingness to not have your way that makes this moral stance meaningful at all. I refuse to believe your position that everyone wishes to spend their lives judging. If I were in a face to face conversation with you, I'd spit in your ugly face because that is an ugly, hateful, selfish thing to say and it (and you) sicken me. I have made it the goal of my life since I moved out on my own to find ways to avoid judging others without provocation. You greatly deserve my judgment since you are a narrow-minded, pig-headed, uneducated, anti-intellectual fuck. How's that for judgment you conservative, know-it-all, retarded piece of shit.

Posted by: Kristina at May 7, 2004 01:02 PM

Oh, I was so mad there, I forgot the 2nd thing.

2: You're all alone here. We already know all the possible arguments you could possibly make and know you have no real debating skills. You can't win and you won't so just leave us in peace.

Posted by: Kristina at May 7, 2004 01:04 PM

He does seem pretty articulate though. Also, if this is the Geoff that I know then I'll vouch for him being not sickening or ugly.

Finals week. No one escapes alive. Congrats on finishing your first one, I wish I could say the same...

Posted by: didofoot at May 7, 2004 03:38 PM

I knew a boy named geoff once. He was the one and only male in a class on gendered literary criticism.

Posted by: michele at May 7, 2004 03:48 PM

Your lit crit Geoff says "Um...I don't think this class is about what I thought it was going to be about..."

Posted by: didofoot at May 7, 2004 03:52 PM

he says, "why is all this gendered literature about vaginas and not phallic shaped things? what kind of view of gendered program are YOU pushing here, teacher-woman?"

but really he just talked in-depth about all the women who raised him. and other people talked about rape. and i, i talked about nothing. my gender is silent. silent as the non-open vagina and non-thrusting cock.

Posted by: michele at May 7, 2004 04:07 PM

Just wanted to add my support for Geoff. He is pretty brave to go up against the intellectual elite here. Seems you hit a nerve!

Posted by: Thea at May 8, 2004 03:53 PM

Geoff wins the Bravery in Cyberspace award for posting his virtually anonymous thoughts. That man is a saint with a keyboard.

Down with intellect! Burn the village!

Don't drop the leash.

Posted by: cody at May 8, 2004 05:01 PM

Yeah, he hit a nerve; the one that's been worn thin by conservative anti-intellectual, a priori social and political philosophy.

Posted by: Kristina at May 8, 2004 06:26 PM

Speaking of gaping holes, Geoff, what about the glaring one at the crux of your argument? You say "selfishness is both living as one wishes to live and asking others to live as one wishes to live." But what if I wish to live by taking the way other people wish to live into consideration? According to your both/and definition, I am both selfish and unselfish at the same time.

Since this is the premise of your argument, the rest of what you have to say falls apart. Not that you actually expounded on your position; you seem to be more keen on tearing down other people's arguments.

Here's a tip. Next time you want to try to tear down someone's argument by pointing out its holes, be damn well sure your own argument doesn't have any.

Posted by: Erica at May 8, 2004 08:24 PM

Erica,

We are all selfish pigs, eagerly milking the chemicals of pleasure that are squirted all over our brains every time we obey the commands of desire. Now, just because one person’s desire happens to call for murder and another’s calls for spreading the bounty of gay rights doesn’t change the core fact that both individuals are slaves to the puppet master who sits behind the wall of consciousness and sends out commands in the form of desire and aversion, attraction and repulsion, pleasure and pain. Both the murderer and the gay rights activist are living the lives they “wish”. They are living lives that give them pleasure. In that sense, they are both acting selfishly. I’ll fully grant that some selfish acts have consequences that help others, while other selfish acts have consequences that hurt others. In any case, I think all of this is really beside the point. The point is that it is not possible to allow everyone to live as they "wish." Some wishes, if acted on, are simply too harmful. So then the issue is where to draw the line and say that some wishes are not permissible and others are. Kristina wants to say that wishing to live a life judging others is "wrong" or not acceptable. She wants to judge me because I judge others. I find that funny--but not surprising.


Posted by: Geoff at May 8, 2004 09:56 PM

oh my god! i go onto cementhorizon just before sleepy time, and i see "erica, we are all selfish pigs, eagerly milking the chemicals of pleasure..." yadda yadda. ew! i wonder who this other erica could be? she is concise and to the point, however, just like erica's usually are. good on ya, sista!

the geoff i knew who spelled his name that way, other than the one michele knows, was tall and curly-haired and from wisconsin. he was a mighty foxy cheese-head, let me tell you.

Posted by: erica at May 9, 2004 02:19 AM

Ah, Geoff's last comment just seems funny to me. The dichotomies that he sees between "desire and aversion, attraction and repulsion, pleasure and pain" are classic ways of conceptualizing the human condition going all the way back to Plato and are at the basis of Kant's philisophical works. However, they are merely nice sounding and stem from the structures of our mind and body and the way that they work together rather than from any universal truth about the way humans actually moralize or conceptualize the world. Once again, nice try Geoff, but your pseudo-religious cliche's won't work here. I suggest you read "Moral Imagination" by Mark Johnson, or "Philosophy in the Flesh" by George Lakoff for some insight into your flawed, completely fake moral reasoning system. (I'm not saying your are an immoral person, just that your moral reasoning system is based on totally bunk, pre-scientific, old-world beliefs about human nature and cognition). I do judge you, Geoff, because you're an asshole who seems to genuinely believe that people are all bound to be selfish and there is no way around it. This just self-justifies your own selfishness and all of the bullshit positions for which you seem to stand. If my idealism and my desire to make the world better, even if just through my own actions, makes me somehow lesser in your eyes, I don't really give a shit. I feel sorry for you w/ your outlook on life and humanity that is so low and so archaic. You're a sad, sad man.

Posted by: Kristina at May 9, 2004 09:19 AM

Kristina,

Sadly, it seems that your only hope is ad hominem attacks and references to books you've read. You have not, indeed cannot, attack the argument itself. Your friends are trying to prop you up: “go Kristina, kick his ass by referring him to another book”. That’s the kind of pseudo intellectualism that passes for intelligence in this circle.

It is also amusing that you, a moralizing do-gooder, would try to compare me to Kant. Your own philosophy is far closer to his moral imperative than mine will ever be. And if you want to talk about outdated dichotomies, try looking at the ones between selfishness and selflessness, improving the world and making it worse. What a naive faith you have still clinging to the moral worldview of people like George Elliot.

I'll leave you with a far, far better Oscar Wilde quote. He referred to a character's uncle "whom the world called 'selfish' because it could derive no particular benefit from him." He hit the nail on the head there.

Have a nice day.


Posted by: Geoff at May 9, 2004 10:08 AM

What do you want from me? To say you're right and I'm wrong? What's wrong with referring you to books? What's wrong with educating yourself about the subject a little bit more before opening your big mouth and spitting out something you "know" that has no other basis than the thing which you are trying to defend. Kant believed that there was a fundamental divide between one's intellect and one's corporeal being; this is at the core of his philosophy about morality and moral reasoning. It has been proven false by mordern neuroscience and cognitive science. You seem to believe so as well, that's all I was saying. Just an observation. I would also like to point out that the term "do-gooder" - once again I reference Lakoff as the source of this analysis, not just something I made up (or that was "instilled" in me as a child), but something I learned from reading a well-written book by an intelligent, thoughful, conscientious and honest man that I respect - is a "conservative" term that posits one that does good in the name of others as a meddler in affairs that are not his own. This insinuates that doing good in the name of others is inherently bad, which you seem to think since you seem to think that doing anything that you want to do is inherently bad for others since it must by nature be selfish. I happen to think doing good is doing good and if you are able discount another's desire to do good with such contempt and lack of empathy, I once again say that I feel sorry for you and your sad life.

Posted by: Kristina at May 9, 2004 11:21 AM

"What's wrong with referring you to books?"

Nothing unless you are doing so as a substitute for an actual argument (which is the case here)

"What's wrong with educating yourself about the subject a little bit more before opening your big mouth and spitting out something you "know" that has no other basis than the thing which you are trying to defend."

You are rather arrogant and highly emotional. I am merely expressing my point of view and I am willing to back it up. You fly off the handle every post and insist on personal insults.

"Kant believed that there was a fundamental divide between one's intellect and one's corporeal being; this is at the core of his philosophy about morality and moral reasoning."

This is not my belief

"It has been proven false by mordern neuroscience and cognitive science."

While it isn't my belief, it certainly has not been proven false by modern neuroscience. Neuroscience has found that color and shape and other information experienced through the senses is actually generated in the brain. A Kantian type person could still argue that the mind is presenting an interpretation of reality and that we never really know the "ding an sich:" just as Kant argued. You are not only arrogant but grossly ignorant. Nothing has been settled in this domain. You mistake intellectual trends and fads for truth.

I have nothing against Lakoff. I've had that book on my list for some time. But you might start by explaining how it actually contradicts my view rather than just spewing anger.

You seem to assume that I am a "conservative," whatever that means. The truth is that you are closer to the conservatives given your propensity for dogmatic moralizing and proselytizing.

"I happen to think doing good is doing good and if you are able discount another's desire to do good with such contempt and lack of empathy"

I don't discount the importance of doing good. But I do recognize that "good" is a relative, not absolute, term. What is "good" for you and your agenda may be "bad" for mine. It's all relative.

Look, if you don't enjoy debating these things, I'll leave. If you do, present an argument and stop relying on personal attacks and references to your favorite books.

Posted by: Geoff at May 9, 2004 12:16 PM

I found this little bit property law I just wrote into my outline interesting: property owner's right to exclude: owner has right to exclusive enjoyment of own property for any purpose that does not invade the rights of another person. Diana Shooting Club v. Lamoureux, 114 Wisc. 44, 59, 89 N.W. 880 (1902). Firstly, I'm constantly amazed by the law's attempts to balance the various competing interests of parties in an attempt to be as fair to each as possible and in light of each's actions and intentions behind those actions. This is extremely difficult, resulting in the complications, loop-holes and inconsistencies in law, but we all (including lawmakers) do what we can with what we have to work with. Second, I can't imagine reading a legal text, brief, judicial opinion or even a regular work of nonfiction that doesn't site references and sources. Anyone would admit that it is impossible for a theoriest or researcher or writer that doesn't site sources to have a work that is of any real value. To posit a line of legal (or philosophical) reasoning w/o any sources is the ultimate in poor debating skills.

However, having tired of this conversation ages and ages ago, I admit that I'm just throwing out random associations and things that I know and how I feel rather than making any kind of well-formed/worded, coherent, comprehensive argument. I guess you win, Geoff, because I'm tired of this crap and debating with someone who doesn't want to site references for information or theories is useless and tiring b/c it can only be personal at that point and it not really an intellectual debate. If you want to debate a priori philosophy with someone, you should just go somewhere else. You're just pissing me off and I'm too busy to deal with your lameness and sadness. All bow to Geoff, the great flame-war victor. All hail. All hail.

Posted by: Kristina at May 9, 2004 12:30 PM

Geoff, please go here for my analysis of the above discussion.

Posted by: dr_v at May 11, 2004 08:00 AM

Whom ever the author,Please tell your friend Jessica that we share the same name "Jessica Beaird". I grew up in Petaluma and actually knew of her when we were little. Freaky yes, however, I have never came across any one with the same name! JLELSEY@surewest.net

Posted by: Jessica at May 11, 2004 09:18 PM

My name is Jessica Beaird too...I thought my family was the only ones to spell Beaird with an I so thats pretty kewl.

Posted by: Jessica at August 1, 2005 09:25 PM
Cementhorizon