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    (Original post by Observatory)
    In that case I receive no remuneration because my employer is only paying me to further his own purposes.


    Ownership is durable control. If some of your income is being taken from you each year, you are being durably controlled for that proportion of your labour time by another.
    Ownership is not durable control. Possession can be simplified to durable control (roughly), but ownership is entirely different. Also, do I sense you're about to make a 'tax is theft' argument next? If so, I suggest you take it to the ancap lunatics who won't laugh at it.

    Morals are just preferences held by humans about what they and other humans should do.
    Once again, you're confusing morals and ethics. The phrase 'my morality' is an oxymoron.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    Ownership is not durable control. Possession can be simplified to durable control (roughly), but ownership is entirely different. Also, do I sense you're about to make a 'tax is theft' argument next? If so, I suggest you take it to the ancap lunatics who won't laugh at it.
    I define ownership as durable control over a physical object.

    Possession is not durable control. If I pinch your wallet I am still in possession of it even if a policeman has seen what I have done and is levelling his gun at me. I do not however own it, because my control of the wallet is not durable.

    Once again, you're confusing morals and ethics. The phrase 'my morality' is an oxymoron.
    Perhaps you are using some specific definition; if so, I do not intend to argue definitions, and will accept yours so that the discussion can proceed, but I am not certain what it is. If your definition is on the lines of, "Morals are correct ethics.", then I deny that morality exists, and consider it a religious concept, even then only a characteristic of certain religions. If the definition is different, please let me know what it is, so that I can make a more precise and accurate statement concerning what you consider morals.
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    I define ownership as durable control over a physical object.

    Possession is not durable control. If I pinch your wallet I am still in possession of it even if a policeman has seen what I have done and is levelling his gun at me. I do not however own it, because my control of the wallet is not durable.
    If I have a thousand year lease over land, I possess it, and that possession is durable in any meaningful sense of the word, but I do not own the land.

    Perhaps you are using some specific definition; if so, I do not intend to argue definitions, and will accept yours so that the discussion can proceed, but I am not certain what it is. If your definition is on the lines of, "Morals are correct ethics.", then I deny that morality exists, and consider it a religious concept, even then only a characteristic of certain religions. If the definition is different, please let me know what it is, so that I can make a more precise and accurate statement concerning what you consider morals.
    If we define morality as 'preference' it ceases to hold useful meaning. It's fine to say it doesn't exist, but then you lose the ability to make normative statements meaningfully.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    If I have a thousand year lease over land, I possess it, and that possession is durable in any meaningful sense of the word, but I do not own the land.
    I don't agree - you own it for a thousand years, or you own the lease. Your ownership isn't indefinite but it's durable. This is categorically different to living in a region filled with bandits, who might take your land at any time or might never take your land. In that situation, you would not own the land, even though it's well possible you will have control of it indefinitely.

    If we define morality as 'preference' it ceases to hold useful meaning. It's fine to say it doesn't exist, but then you lose the ability to make normative statements meaningfully.
    Fine, but I haven't make any normative statements. Norms are elements of a religion. I have a religion, of course, as do you, but I haven't argued that mine is the One True Faith, and am not going to.
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    I don't agree - you own it for a thousand years, or you own the lease. Your ownership isn't indefinite but it's durable. This is categorically different to living in a region filled with bandits, who might take your land at any time or might never take your land. In that situation, you would not own the land, even though it's well possible you will have control of it indefinitely.
    I mean, you're just using a definition of ownership which is factually wrong. Ownership is a legal concept; we must look to the law for its definition.

    Fine, but I haven't make any normative statements. Norms are elements of a religion. I have a religion, of course, as do you, but I haven't argued that mine is the One True Faith, and am not going to.
    I'm not saying I'm correct; I'm saying that I'm more likely to be correct than your nihilism.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    I mean, you're just using a definition of ownership which is factually wrong. Ownership is a legal concept; we must look to the law for its definition.
    I don't agree; ownership is objective. "Smith owns this box." is not a statement about what the law says about who ought to control the box, it's a statement about who actually controls the box, and who can reasonably expect to continue controlling it into the future. I can say this because, if the law said Smith owned the box, but he actually had no control over it nor any reasonable expectation of regaining control over it, then what that says is that the law isn't the law, at least as the law pertains to the box. If this is the case for most objects, then the law isn't the law: states that cannot enforce their laws cease to be states and their law ceases to be law. Enforcement is primary and defines ownership; law is an emergent concept that seeks to label who owns what and in what circumstances ownership changes.

    I'm not saying I'm correct; I'm saying that I'm more likely to be correct than your nihilism.
    You are saying that morals are correct ethics and you are saying that morals exist, so you are either saying that you are correct or you have ethics that you believe are wrong.
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    I don't agree; ownership is objective. "Smith owns this box." is not a statement about what the law says about who ought to control the box, it's a statement about who actually controls the box, and who can reasonably expect to continue controlling it into the future. I can say this because, if the law said Smith owned the box, but he actually had no control over it nor any reasonable expectation of regaining control over it, then what that says is that the law isn't the law, at least as the law pertains to the box. If this is the case for most objects, then the law isn't the law: states that cannot enforce their laws cease to be states and their law ceases to be law. Enforcement is primary and defines ownership; law is an emergent concept that seeks to label who owns what and in what circumstances ownership changes.
    Ownership doesn't exist outside of the law.

    You are saying that morals are correct ethics and you are saying that morals exist, so you are either saying that you are correct or you have ethics that you believe are wrong.
    My ethics are more likely than not to be wrong, but I believe they are less likely to be wrong than any other set of ethics.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    Ownership doesn't exist outside of the law.
    If I am alone on a desert island, the only person in the universe, I own the island even if I do not choose to write down laws. On the other hand, if there is someone else many miles away on a second island, who cannot reach mine, it does not matter if he writes down a law saying he owns my island, or if I write down a law saying that I own his.

    Law formalises ownership, but does not create or destroy it. Rather, we decide what is law based on what formal description of ownership most closely coincides with reality. English law is English law because who English law says owns what in England closely (but not exactly) coincides with who actually does. Roman law used to, but no longer does, so is no longer law. English law has no greater claim to legitimacy than Roman law - the law of a state only overthrown by violence - other than this.

    My ethics are more likely than not to be wrong, but I believe they are less likely to be wrong than any other set of ethics.
    I think proving the existence of morals/the One True Faith is similar to proving the existence of God. Perhaps actually identical.

    In fact ethics are arbitrary preferences - they can be anything - and the coherent patterns we see are simply shaped by Darwinian selection.

    I can say that equalism tends toward decay in the capability of a society, by reducing selection pressure for capable people and introducing new selection pressure for incapable people (objective claim), which ultimately leads to the conquest or destruction of that society, or to revolution within it (objective claim).

    But that doesn't say that equalism is bad (normative claim), only that it is unlikely to be more than a temporary aberration from an unstoppable evolutionary trend toward other ethical systems (objective claim).
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    If I am alone on a desert island, the only person in the universe, I own the island even if I do not choose to write down laws. On the other hand, if there is someone else many miles away on a second island, who cannot reach mine, it does not matter if he writes down a law saying he owns my island, or if I write down a law saying that I own his.

    Law formalises ownership, but does not create or destroy it. Rather, we decide what is law based on what formal description of ownership most closely coincides with reality. English law is English law because who English law says owns what in England closely (but not exactly) coincides with who actually does. Roman law used to, but no longer does, so is no longer law. English law has no greater claim to legitimacy than Roman law - the law of a state only overthrown by violence - other than this.
    Your first paragraph is simply untrue. In that case, neither person owns either island, unless they establish a legal system (although it is difficult to conceive of a legal system without multiple people in it). This is because ownership is fundamentally a right, and the only possible source of rights (i.e. invulnerable, absolute claims) is the law itself. All other claims are not absolute.

    I think proving the existence of morals/the One True Faith is similar to proving the existence of God. Perhaps actually identical.

    In fact ethics are arbitrary preferences - they can be anything - and the coherent patterns we see are simply shaped by Darwinian selection.

    I can say that equalism tends toward decay in the capability of a society, by reducing selection pressure for capable people and introducing new selection pressure for incapable people (objective claim), which ultimately leads to the conquest or destruction of that society, or to revolution within it (objective claim).

    But that doesn't say that equalism is bad (normative claim), only that it is unlikely to be more than a temporary aberration from an unstoppable evolutionary trend toward other ethical systems (objective claim).
    It's not especially similar, since proving the existence of a divine being attempts to establish an is, rather than an ought. I agree ethics are arbitrary preferences: that is what distinguishes ethics from morals.

    Equalism, as you term it, is difficult to maintain in the absence of authoritarianism, which is difficult to establish in the first place, I agree.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    Your first paragraph is simply untrue. In that case, neither person owns either island, unless they establish a legal system (although it is difficult to conceive of a legal system without multiple people in it). This is because ownership is fundamentally a right, and the only possible source of rights (i.e. invulnerable, absolute claims) is the law itself. All other claims are not absolute.
    One can simply define property as what is written in law. Then how does one define the law? I argue that the law cannot be meaningfully defined except by its correspondence with a primary concept of property, which makes this definition of property circular and meaningless. Therefore property exists before law.

    It's not especially similar, since proving the existence of a divine being attempts to establish an is, rather than an ought. I agree ethics are arbitrary preferences: that is what distinguishes ethics from morals.
    Morality - the one correct system of ethics - is an "is" as well as an "ought".

    Equalism, as you term it, is difficult to maintain in the absence of authoritarianism, which is difficult to establish in the first place, I agree.
    That's not what I said (not that I necessarily disagree).
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    One can simply define property as what is written in law. Then how does one define the law? I argue that the law cannot be meaningfully defined except by its correspondence with a primary concept of property, which makes this definition of property circular and meaningless. Therefore property exists before law.
    ...I don't understand where you're going here, how can the law be dependent on property? Property is just a small element of the law.

    Morality - the one correct system of ethics - is an "is" as well as an "ought".


    That's not what I said (not that I necessarily disagree).
    I'm saying that one likely exists, not that any given system is the one correct system. That's why it's significantly more likely than the existence of God. Furthermore, there is no evidence which would seem to be contrary to many core tenets of most systems like there is with religion.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    ...I don't understand where you're going here, how can the law be dependent on property? Property is just a small element of the law.
    ALL legal questions are questions of property. Not all, of course, are "property law", but, for instance, "health and safety law" is about who owns workers and who owns companies (answer: not who "property law" says owns them, at least not entirely). Again, ownership of property is durable control. All legal questions are about who controls what, when.

    I'm saying that one likely exists, not that any given system is the one correct system. That's why it's significantly more likely than the existence of God. Furthermore, there is no evidence which would seem to be contrary to many core tenets of most systems like there is with religion.
    I see no reason whatsoever to believe that and you have provided none. I define Moralism as a non-interventionist deistic religion. I shall call it Moraltheism. I am an Evolutionist.
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    ALL legal questions are questions of property. Not all, of course, are "property law", but, for instance, "health and safety law" is about who owns workers and who owns companies (answer: not who "property law" says owns them, at least not entirely). Again, ownership of property is durable control. All legal questions are about who controls what, when.
    The law is about organisation, not property. The tort of trespass against the person, for instance, clearly has nothing to do with property, since a living human is incapable of being owned. However, at this point, I suspect we're just making statements rather than arguing: yours is certainly an extremely unconventional view of property and the law, so I'd be interested in reading more about it - care to recommend a book or something?

    I see no reason whatsoever to believe that and you have provided none. I define Moralism as a non-interventionist deistic religion. I shall call it Moraltheism. I am an Evolutionist.
    Morality is just the question of what any human should do at any decision point. There is no basis for saying that anything is 'good', 'bad', 'right' or 'wrong' without morality.
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    The law is about organisation, not property. The tort of trespass against the person, for instance, clearly has nothing to do with property, since a living human is incapable of being owned.
    Living persons are just objects like any other, and therefore property. Ideally self-owning property, to my mind, but in reality partly that, partly property of the state.

    However, at this point, I suspect we're just making statements rather than arguing: yours is certainly an extremely unconventional view of property and the law, so I'd be interested in reading more about it - care to recommend a book or something?
    IDK, I am a physicist, not a legal scholar, and merely view things as they seem most logical to me, even if other peoples' notation is different. Not that I came to these views entirely in a vacuum, but I think it would be easier for me to write my own book that recover all the citations. David Friedman is an interesting man, and both a physicist and a legal scholar, but I can't promise that reading him will lead you on a straight and narrow path to an understanding of my views.

    Morality is just the question of what any human should do at any decision point. There is no basis for saying that anything is 'good', 'bad', 'right' or 'wrong' without morality.
    And I'm not sure there is such a basis.

    I think peoples' ethical systems are better viewed as strategies in the game of life. Strategies can be more or less successful, for various definitions of success. That's all.

    Morality - the One True Faith - is a religious belief. Belief in morality is probably adaptive on a group level, as it tends to reduce self-destructive fighting about correct ethics by making people more likely to believe that socially dominant ethics are "correct", but morality itself does not actually exist.

    I am afraid that the world is largely mechanical, including the living world.
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    And I'm not sure there is such a basis.

    I think peoples' ethical systems are better viewed as strategies in the game of life. Strategies can be more or less successful, for various definitions of success. That's all.

    Morality - the One True Faith - is a religious belief. Belief in morality is probably adaptive on a group level, as it tends to reduce self-destructive fighting about correct ethics by making people more likely to believe that socially dominant ethics are "correct", but morality itself does not actually exist.

    I am afraid that the world is largely mechanical, including the living world.
    Given you seem to deny the existence of morality in general then, how do you hold the ethical beliefs that you (presumably) hold - I assume you would hold the murder of someone dear to you to be 'wrong'?

    As for strategies... I think they're more criteria for assessment of the success of a strategy, not a strategy in themselves (I'm not certain ethical beliefs are voluntary, or changeable at will).
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    (Original post by TheDefiniteArticle)
    Given you seem to deny the existence of morality in general then, how do you hold the ethical beliefs that you (presumably) hold - I assume you would hold the murder of someone dear to you to be 'wrong'?
    I have certain preferences, pursuing them makes me happy. I don't believe my preferences are uniquely good. I don't think that killing people is wrong in general (of course few people do, but the exceptions differ). Killing people dear to me makes me sad, so if someone tried to do that, I would oppose them to the extent of my power.

    As for strategies... I think they're more criteria for assessment of the success of a strategy, not a strategy in themselves (I'm not certain ethical beliefs are voluntary, or changeable at will).
    Ethics are answers to the question, "What should I do given X?" for all X. So ethics are basically the program people follow to determine their actions. I agree they're only partially rationally controlled, hence I say they're subject to (and a result of) Darwinian pressures.

    You asked me about the death of people near to me. If the only way humans could survive was to eat their mothers, probably they would do it, and see it as ethical. Or else humans just wouldn't exist. In fact living family was useful to my ancestors, so I want to preserve my family. I suspect thing sort of thing determines a lot of "obvious" ethical principles and that "morality" is basically the centre of the Venn diagram of everyone's "obvious" ethical principles. Or at least "everyone I know", or "everyone I respect", or something like that. Living creatures in general do not want to preserve their families; some creatures simply regard their families with indifference, others deliberately seek them out and eat them.
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    (Original post by Salads1)
    I thought the expression was panties? Anyway I didn't mean to sound that way, on the contrary I said that to defuse a situation where somebody angrily replies to me with "but then you must hate women" or something. I just don't see how women can be paid as much when they aren't generating anywhere near the amount of money that men are in that particular industry.
    Yeah that's the expression, but it first came about to make light of women's problems, I'm not saying that's how you meant it, it just came across that way in context. I agree that as women's football doesn't generate as much as men's they can't be given equal pay, but for sectors like medicine for example, then pay should be equal because it's not like there's a team for female doctors and male doctors it's just everyone together.
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    (Original post by Emily May)
    Yeah that's the expression, but it first came about to make light of women's problems, I'm not saying that's how you meant it, it just came across that way in context. I agree that as women's football doesn't generate as much as men's they can't be given equal pay, but for sectors like medicine for example, then pay should be equal because it's not like there's a team for female doctors and male doctors it's just everyone together.
    Again, it isn't as simple as that. If you're a surgeon working in a private hospital you'd get (essentially) a cut of their total profits, if your hospital generated more then you'd get more, if it generated less you'd get less, which could cause discrepencies in the wages of people in a certain field and make it look as if one gender, or minority or whatever is being discriminated against which is not necessarily the case. Furthermore, wages can be negotiated during interviews, if men, in general, are more assertive they could win themselves a higher salary despite having the same qualifications as their female counterparts. I'm not saying this as something to justify discriminating against women, I myself am at a disadvantage because of it, since I am the polar opposite of assertive but just because it doesn't work in my favor does not mean it is not true.

    Considering these, as well as many things I probably fail to mention, people should not be saying "equal work = equal pay" but rather "equal pay for the same given circumstances, regardless of gender, age, ethnicity, political leaning etc."

    ; Oh just something I remembered related to interviews and how employers view employees - women are far more likely to quit or leave early due to pregnancies, employers don't like that because they lose money and have their bussinesses fail and they're forced to lay more people off as a result of it, so there is that to consider - in some contracts, like for instance with some models, they aren't allowed to have children within a certain period of time.

    I'm not stating my personal opinion on any of these things but rather reality the way I know and see it.
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    (Original post by Emily May)
    Yeah that's the expression, but it first came about to make light of women's problems, I'm not saying that's how you meant it, it just came across that way in context. I agree that as women's football doesn't generate as much as men's they can't be given equal pay, but for sectors like medicine for example, then pay should be equal because it's not like there's a team for female doctors and male doctors it's just everyone together.
    Exactly, which is why female doctors don't get paid less than male doctors doing the same hours, at the same level, bringing in the same revenue, with the same experience and qualifications.
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    (Original post by Emily May)
    Yeah that's the expression, but it first came about to make light of women's problems, I'm not saying that's how you meant it, it just came across that way in context. I agree that as women's football doesn't generate as much as men's they can't be given equal pay, but for sectors like medicine for example, then pay should be equal because it's not like there's a team for female doctors and male doctors it's just everyone together.
    Why do feminists keep telling lie after lie. Male doctors get paid more than female doctors [just because of their gender apparently] - this is not true at all. Even if the statistics did show that on average, make doctors get paid more than female doctors (I don't know) it would not be from discrimination, it would probably be due to all the reasons that other people have posted above.
 
 
 
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