Re: MD Begging the Question, Moral Intuitions, and Answering the Nazi, Part III

From: Patrick van den Berg (
Date: Fri Oct 17 2003 - 14:36:35 BST

  • Next message: Platt Holden: "Re: MD Begging the Question, Moral Intuitions, and Answering the Nazi, Part II"

    Hi Platt,

    Matt and Platt wrote:
    > > The force is our intuition of Dynamic Quality, a capacity
    > that
    > > every person has, that every person has a moral obligation to
    > follow.
    > > If the Nazi denies it, then we should feel righteous in saying that
    > he
    > > is subordinating Dynamic Quality to immoral static patterns. The
    > Nazi
    > > is immoral because he denies Dynamic Quality.
    > The Nazi is immoral because he is anti-intellectual. You are really
    > stretching to make an argument.

    I agree with Matt here.
    Intellectuality recently defined as the capability and usage of
    abstract- from the given perceptual 'now' detached- thought is something
    the nazi's were very good at. They were overly rationalistic in their
    way of eliminating jews. Very rationally they thought up of an efficient
    way to do this, via the gaschambers. This invention reflects calm,
    abstract thought aimed at a certain objective. The jews and other
    victims were abstractized as being a minor or bad product of natural
    evolution, and therefore they rationally justified their elimination.

    Greetings, Patrick.

    > itself, Pirsig becomes a Kantian by suggesting that some
    > > static patterns, like "All bachelors are single", are analytic,
    > wholly
    > > internal to themselves, and that some static patterns, like "Nazis
    > are
    > > immoral", are synthetic, they refer and are forced by something
    > outside
    > > of the pattern. This allows, in argumentation, for Pirsig to not
    > simply
    > > make verbal inferences, but real inferences, like the kind that
    > would be
    > > made when answering the Nazi, when engaging in an argument where you
    > can
    > > triumphantly and dialectically declare "You are immoral!"
    > >
    > > But the pragmatist gets rid of this distinction. He dissolves our
    > > ability to distinguish in any absolutely certain way the difference
    > > between analytic truths and synthetic truths, verbal inferences and
    > real
    > > inferences. By doing this, the pragmatist is saying that our moral
    > > intuitions are inside of a vocabulary, too. That the distinction
    > > between Dynamic Quality and static quality, between unmediated and
    > > mediated experience, is inside of a vocabulary. Pirsig wants to say
    > > that our vocabulary is only our static patterns of quality
    > (specifically
    > > our intellectual static patterns of quality) and that Dynamic
    > Quality
    > > exists outside of our vocabularies. Dynamic Quality then becomes
    > our
    > > trump card, that which forces people to use certain vocabularies
    > rather
    > > than others. But the pragmatist simply becomes metaphilosophical
    > and
    > > says that you are begging the question. By saying that something
    > exists
    > > outside of a vocabulary, you are begging the question over the
    > > pragmatist who says that nothing can, that nothing can force us to
    > play
    > > a vocabulary. The pragmatist instead says that some vocabularies
    > are
    > > better than others, but the choice in vocabularies is always a
    > question
    > > begging experience.
    > >
    > > People should notice that I've conveniently walked around in a
    > circle
    > > for everybody:
    > I notice you circling until I get dizzy. I mean, what's your point?
    > > I've ended with Quine's dissolution of the
    > > analytic/synthetic dogma, which was one of my original premises. I
    > > didn't actually conclude with Quine's dissolution, but I could try
    > by
    > > pointing out that "Dynamic Quality" exists as a static pattern, that
    > we
    > > can't seperate any of those words from a vocabulary, from the
    > Quality
    > > vocabulary. That any effort to point or refer or demonstrate the
    > > existence of something unmediated is doomed to mediation. But
    > that's
    > > not my main point.
    > That's good because I don't get it. You're simply repeating what
    > idealists have said for a hundred years or so.
    > > My point isn't to argue for the pragmatist position,
    > > for Quine's dissolution of one of the dogma's of empiricism. The
    > point
    > > is that Rorty is showing us the consequences of pragmatism. My
    > effort
    > > is to show that Pirsig fails as a pragmatist part of the time, and
    > > succeeds some of the time. I am not arguing for pragmatism. I am
    > > showing the fruits of its labors.
    > What "fruits" for goodness sake? How does this change one iota of the
    > MOQ? All I see here is an academic exercise of little "pragmatic"
    > value. Will there be a test on "A pragmatist's view of the MOQ?" Why
    > should we care about this any more than "A Kantian view of the MOQ" or
    > "A Clintonian view of the MOQ?" Why not just tell us in plain English
    > what you think is right and wrong, good and bad about the MOQ? Why all
    > this beating around in arcane philosophical bushes?
    > I know. Your pragmatic answer is "Platt's full of crap."
    > Platt
    > MOQ.ORG -
    > Mail Archives:
    > Aug '98 - Oct '02 -
    > Nov '02 Onward -
    > MD Queries -
    > To unsubscribe from moq_discuss follow the instructions at:

    Do you Yahoo!?
    The New Yahoo! Shopping - with improved product search

    MOQ.ORG -
    Mail Archives:
    Aug '98 - Oct '02 -
    Nov '02 Onward -
    MD Queries -

    To unsubscribe from moq_discuss follow the instructions at:

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Fri Oct 17 2003 - 14:38:57 BST