buybuydandavis at yahoo.com
Wed Oct 13 02:14:55 CEST 2010
> My thought is for the concept, for the idea that one can think and act
> based on one's inner values and evaluated self-interest without
> requiring a nod of approval from anyone else and/or justification from
> a moral system or spokesperson thereof.
But are your morals separate from your inner values?
A mother cat tends not to eat its young. Why not? Moist, tender, moving, but
relatively helpless - sounds like a perfect snack for a cat. I would submit that
they don't because they have some built in social values, as many animals do,
and as we do. I'd call some of those built in values moral sentiments.
Just because some morals are innate, does not imply that I feel I therefore must
follow them. But I certainly hold myself free to do so, and in general feel
inclined to do so. Does that mean I've fallen off the egoist wagon? I don't
think so. Acting egoistically precludes neither acting out of altruistic
impulses nor acting out of moral impulses.
In the past I may have missed the distinction that makes the difference - egoism
isn't the refusal to follow such impulses, its the recognition that one is in
fact free to choose, and all rationalizations which attempt to derive an ought
from an is are fundamentally flawed.
The moral systems are the problem, the erroneous claims that your service is
> I frankly think many or even most Americans (a highly religion-
> oriented culture) have not heard an honest defense of acting in one's
> chosen interest.
That is certainly true, but for good reason. The New Atheist movement attracts
plenty enough hatred by not believing in God. Try telling the world you don't
accept objective morality. Even the so called relativists tend to be just
cultural relativists - clinging to morality just as fiercely as a fundamentalist
clings to religion, but allowing others the leeway to cling to prevalent
morality of another town. But deny objective morality entirely - sacrilege! Burn
But I think it is a mistake is to egoism as something to defend. Instead, one
refutes the alternatives that claim your service by right, points out that one
is free to choose, and leaves the acceptance to the listener.
> Anytime you feel it appropriate, I'd enjoy reading about your work
> regarding labels and the neutrality of words. I have background in
> general semantics, which addresses the subject, too.
Yet another GS sighting. It seems to turn up everywhere. I sent an email to
Daniel Dennett, asking him for a reference to Rapoport's Rules of Debate he
advocated in some lecture. He said he was looking for a good reference himself.
I tracked down some. Turns out Rapoport was associated with GS, I think as an
editor of ETC, and he originally adapted his Rules of Debate from Carl Rogers, a
psychotherapist who also had GS roots. It would be interesting to see a tree of
GS influence. I wonder if Dennett is in any way influenced.
- Dan Davis
More information about the nonserviam