Vaarsuvius

Thiago Cardozo's page

Goblin Squad Member. 382 posts (384 including aliases). 2 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 alias.



1 person marked this as a favorite.

DoJ incompetence in Rosen case


1 person marked this as a favorite.

An interesting bit of history, which becomes much more revealing given the last news, is the misleading answer Obama gave to Jon Stewart last year concerning wiretapping and surveillance:

" STEWART: I think people have been surprised to see the strength of the Bush era warrantless wiretapping laws and those types of things not also be lessened—That the structures he put in place that people might have thought were government overreach and maybe they had a mind you would tone down, you haven’t.

OBAMA: The truth is we have modified them and built a legal structure and safeguards in place that weren’t there before on a whole range issues.
"

Yeah, you have "modified" them alright. One can only imagine what safeguards are those that allow such sweeping collection of data.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
meatrace wrote:
Thiago Cardozo wrote:


Whether it is a scandal or not is irrelevant. It is wrong and should stop.
Perhaps you didn't notice the thread title.

Zing! Busted =-O


1 person marked this as a favorite.

More on Obama persecution of journalists, now DOJ going after Fox News Washington correspondent


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

Comrade Cardozo, if you're out there:

About a month late, but 2 of the 3 anarchists suffering from Living under Obama's Presidency have been released.

Free Maddy Pfeiffer!

These are great news. The unwholesome persecution of political activists has been pretty ruthless. Good that once in a while something like this happens.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Veterans returning medals at NATO summit


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Bradley Manning and the Ministry of Love.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
thejeff wrote:

First, since all of this is not being done under criminal law all of the constitutional objections about due process and similar things are really not relevant. They are being done as military operations. That may raise different constitutional questions, but not the ones usually brought up.

Second, I agree with you. I think the entire War on Terror was a bad approach from the start.
I really only get into these drone arguments when someone blurs the line into "ohmigod Obama's going to send drones to kill you!!!" rhetoric. Then I try to bring out the difference and wind up seeming like I'm defending the policy far more than I want to.

Concerning the constitution: I understand what you're saying. But the problem I have with this is you cannot call something which is not a war a war just to be exempt of the difficulties associated with legal issues. Imagine if the same logic is applied to the "War on Drugs".

Yeah, I know what you mean. I don't think Obama is going to do anything of the sort either. But don't you agree that by establishing secret criteria for strikes, using drones in domestic security, punishing people who try to keep the government's actions accountable, all the tools are being put into place for that? It doesn't matter that Obama is not going to do anything of the sort, personally. He's giving a big step in the direction of furnishing the tools for someone down the road doing just that. And it doesn't even need to get there. It is already pretty bad without the doomsday scenario.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
TheWhiteknife wrote:
LazarX wrote:
TheWhiteknife wrote:
I have not seen anyone deny that the point of war is to kill people. Perhaps you think every other war was conducted in absolute secrecy? They werent. Now you can be killed for "supporting" an "associated group". What do those mean? If you are going to answer that question, let me pre-emptively call you a liar. Signature strikes are the worst of the bunch. You could* be killed simply for having weapons and/or traveling in a group because Al-quaida, the Taliban, and "associated groups" carry weapons and/or travel in groups. But the kicker is who WOULDNT carry weapons and/or travel in groups in areas where those groups are? You'd be crazy not to, or else those groups will attack you. But if you do, we will bomb you!

You don't judge modern conflicts in the measure of the old. There aren't any neat borders, and our enemies frequently take shelter amidst innocents. I will definitely prefer a selective strike over carpet bombing a town full of noncombatants to get at the people we need to get at.

The signature case of this whole thread is about the killing of a man who was an active traitor to this country, who was participating in activities dedicated to killing our soldiers and our civilians. What part of treason in a martial exercise do you not get in this case? The advocates of this shining example of innocent American citizenry have been raising up strawmen fears by trying to extend the application of this principle to a universal threat. It has not been a credible argument,nor even a rational one.

Do you know what a signature strike is?

Edit-as for the bit about Anwar al-Alaki, prove it. Our very own Comrade Anklebiter actively talks about killing US citizens via worker's revolutions. Should he be killed?

I'm starting to think that LazarX has no idea about what are signature strikes, since his mention of a specific named target directly contradicts the nature of signature strikes.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
LazarX wrote:
Thiago Cardozo wrote:
meatrace wrote:
If no one knows, then you don't know. And if you don't know then asserting that you or I might be the target of such strikes is assinine.
There's no need to assert that. I need only to assert the immorality and indefensibility of establishing secret criteria for murdering people.
The point of war is that you kill people. Especially when those people are looking to kill you or your people. Perhaps you think that Al Qaeda or the Taliban deserve some sort of pass on their activities?

First of all this "War on Terror" stuff is absurd. You make war against nations and you prosecute individuals and gangs. But let's forget that for a while and go with the idea that you're at "war" against terror, same as "war" on drugs. I'll concede you even that, for the absurdity of these "signature strikes" does not depend on this discussion.

No, that is not what I think. What I think is that if your criteria for killing people is secret, you can kill whoever you like without need for consequences or review. At this point you basically have to blindly trust the guy who is wielding that power. And EVEN if you do, which I guess is a stupid stance to take, someone else will get that same power eventually. It's the secrecy and the falseness in play here. Have you actually seen how the WH is counting "militants" killed as in opposition to civilians? And you agree with that crap?

And what I don't want is that at some point in the future, other countries decide they can play the same game and start sending drones to kill "terrorists" in the middle of civilian populations.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
meatrace wrote:
If no one knows, then you don't know. And if you don't know then asserting that you or I might be the target of such strikes is assinine.

There's no need to assert that. I need only to assert the immorality and indefensibility of establishing secret criteria for murdering people.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
LazarX wrote:
TheWhiteknife wrote:
thejeff wrote:
TheWhiteknife wrote:
Obama will allow for gay marriage during your indefinite detention and/or shortly before he has you assassinated. They are different, HD!

Ah yes, we're back to the "Obama is going to send drones to blow you up in your nice suburban home" bull.

Are you telling me that he hasnt had US citizens killed? Are you telling me that he didnt sign indefinite detention into law? Or are you just mad cause your supporting the guy who supports those things?

Again, he didn't send drones against the paper boy next door. Who he had killed was a treasonous man who dedicated himself to Al Quaida aiding and abetting killers of our soldiers and civilians like the paper boy next door.

If you declare war against our country, if you aid and abet and take up the uniform of soldiers or terrorists who kill our people, then you're a legitimate target, even if your official citizenry is American.

Let us talk about "signature strikes", then. How about, "you fit some hazy profile, though we have no idea who you're" strikes?

And indefinite detention? Without review?

Edited for tone :p


1 person marked this as a favorite.
LazarX wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
stuff
Let me get this straight, you're blaming Obama for the actions of a college administration? Last time I heard, college administration was not within the purview of the Executive Branch.
I don't get it. I don't remember anyone giving Comrade Cordozo the third degree when he said Obama violated those anarchists' rights in the worst violation of civil liberties since Adolf Hitler.
I can't keep track of every idiotic, extreme, or strawman post on these boards.

It seems you took the bait here. If you reread the original post and my follow ups you'd see that I have done nothing of the sort. Comrade is exagerating, hopefully for the sake of humour. Wherever I was convinced I might have been wrong, I have pointed that out.

It is slowly becoming clear the debate tactics some people use: ignore posts which describe stuff you cannot defend or explain away and go for the easy jabs.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Samnell wrote:
Thiago Cardozo wrote:


I do get that. If I was an american, I might end up voting for Obama, but I'd have to do it with a handkerchief to the nose. But the thing is, don't you think that his base should be doing more in pressuring him about these issues? It's not like you can prevent a Republican from governing ever again. And then, all those things Obama has been putting into place will be freely available for these guys.

Doing more what? Voting for Republicans? Primarying Obama? Writing angry letters? What tools do you think are available to the average, non-rich voter? I named the only one of real relevance and laid out the problem with it last post.

I guess Thoreau might have an idea or two...

You guys feel so powerless to stop your government from doing things you disagree with and you argue that the other side is so bad that it is basically a non-option. It means that there is no real choice but one, right? So how does it feel to be in a democracy that is working like this?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Bruunwald wrote:
Thiago Cardozo wrote:


I guess that one of my main points here is that this fight is not being fought at all. When Bush started with this stuff, democrat-leaning people would complain how awful these things were. It appears that people are so afraid of Republicans in office now that they are willing to let Obama get away with pretty much anything to avoid it. This, I think, might be one of the reasons I retread this subject all the time.

You're over thinking and over complicating it. You're turning a non-issue into a conspiracy.

Listen, I am a news junky. I am online hours a day, and I watch at least three news broadcasts every 24 hours, usually four or five. This is the first I am hearing of this. If I missed it, then everybody missed it. Look at the reactions in this thread. Nobody here heard about this, either.

I think two things are happening that are a lot more plausible as explanations than is a nation-wide conspiracy of Democrats in collusion with the President.

1. You get your news from fringe sources, which you might want to double and triple check for veracity before posting stuff you know is going to make the bees buzz. (And don't always take what they say for granted as the complete or truthful story.)

2. People on both sides of the aisle are so wrapped up in the Big News Story of the day - the election - that they are not noticing the smaller stories.

What is your best evidence that both are going on? Well, if this mess were 100% true as being told to us by these fringe news outlets, the Republicans would be so all over it, jabbing the President with it, painting it on billboards to try to paint Obama as somebody who threatens their rights, not only would we have heard about it by now, IT WOULD BE THE ONLY THING ON THE NEWS FOR DAYS AND DAYS AT A TIME.

First, I have to say that, given the crappy mainstream media you guys have, being "fringe" is not that much of a downer.

Second, it's a mistake to think the Republicans would criticize anything like this, because this is actually stuff you expect from them. They want to seem "tougher" than Obama, not softer so I don't think that would work so well, not with people going crazy with "national security";
Third, I'll concede the point I did not research this story so well. Maybe I already grew accustomed to what I've seen happening with the erosion of civil liberties that it did not strike me as particularly unbelievable. There're, however, the stories of Bradley Manning and Laura Poitras, which are not "small" and are being ignored by MSM. What about those?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
ciretose wrote:

If only John McCain had won...oh wait, he was more extreme on these positions...

If you make the perfect the enemy of the better, you only leave open worse as an outcome.

That's not my point at all. As any citizen worried about the future of our world, I pay some attention to how things transpire in your country, given the power and influence it has and that it has been known to exert abroad. In my opinion, Bush's government was disastrous and I was very, very excited with Obama's election.

The thing is, as I watched things progress, I started to see that Obama was actively pushing a number of policies I could only expect from someone like Bush. And he is being quite successful, and is going practically unopposed in pushing those.

I can definitely see why you feel you have to vote for Obama again. I just think that if you guys feel so powerless in relation to what is possible to do to influence policies in your country, maybe there is something wrong about how things are working.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Interesting article on the two candidates and media perception.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
BigNorseWolf wrote:


99 times out of a hundred thats the best (if depressing) way of understanding foreign policy. People that aren't "on your team" or "in your tribe" really don't merit any sacrifice on anothers part. If 100 of them need to die to save someone you know... oh well. A democracy is especially prone to this, because even if the rare individual will jeopardize their own life or well being for another, there's no way that most people will.

Its not like hypocrisy is a new idea in either politics or the US. The founding fathers were touting freedom and decrying mostly reasonable taxes as slavery while at the same time keeping actual slaves in bondage.

Just to be clear, I'm not naive or uninformed about this. I am just working under the assumption that some people there actually give a damn about this, are against this kind of behavior, and actually care if their elected representative uses their collective power to bully others.

Quote:


It has a very good PR campaign backed by a LOT of cash from the people on the industrial side of the military industrial complex who are profiting immensely off of the US tax dollar. If a politician steps up to cut military spending someone that manufactures military equipment is going to throw a bucket of cash at his opposition. In a primary race 100k can be the difference beween "John who?" and a landslide victory.

In short while its not good for the american people it IS good for the people who make the decisions about what our government does.
...

I am not oblivious to these mechanisms either. I am talking about people, who, apparently, are aware of them and yet think that Obama is, in some way, not abusing people's propaganda-generated trust in the same way

Quote:
Quote:
The thing that makes me sad is that I think the ideas which support your constitution to be awesome and an example to be followed. But it appears to me that, for a long time now, US government has been turning from its Chaotic Good ideals into a Lawful Evil, realpolitik state.

When exactly did we live up to those ideals? When we had slaves? When the founders imposed the same taxes that they had decried under the king? When we slaughtered native americans for land? When we forcibly occupied the Philippines? When we started wars for United fruit? Toppled democratically elected officials to instal dictators?

There's no ideals to go "back" to. If we want to hit them it has to be by going forward. Democrats aren't moving things there fast but they're at least going in that direction.

I might have sounded a little naive, so let me express my ideas in another way:

There are indeed ideals to go back to, even if they never have been fully or even partly accomplished. The thing I sympathize with is not the "good things" the US did in its past (though there are some), but the lofty ideals which are present in its constitution. You can always strive for them. Unless, of course, we fall into a nightmare scenario where dissent is impossible.

To put it into the context of the topic at hand, unless you do want and are comfortable with a surveillance state which assassinates people abroad with no regard for concrete consequences and international law (It's good to be king, right?), I would think that a better evaluation of what Obama actually means to do and, more importantly, his ability to carry it out, would be important.

Bush was only able to carry out a good part of his worse policies because of the terrible tragedy that was 9/11. Without it, it is very unlikely that he would have the political muscle to be able to fight the opposition on his dangerous agenda.

Obama is in a different situation. He is a smart guy and he faces no opposition in his foreign policy/domestic surveillance programs, because the other party is basically ok with them. And Obama is being very cunning in the way he is implementing those things and not losing the support of his base. You are getting dangerously close to Oceania and applauding the guy for doing so.

There is one good thing of a Romney election: bad things your president does (which probably would be plenty) would be considered bad again. If Romney tried to send killer robots to murder people, allowed the wiretapping of whole communities based on their ethnicity and religion, searched peoples homes for political material, we would have people criticizing him for it instead of congratulating him on his strategic shrewdness.

To sum it up, unless you manage to escape your two-party system gridlock quickly, you will probably find yourselves in serious trouble.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Thiago Cardozo wrote:
Yeah, you're probably as equally worried of being killed by terrorists as those guys with killer robots flying over their heads day and night...
I don't think the numbers work out to being too worried about the possibility on either side.

Maybe you didn't read the report

life under drones

Is this anything like life in US? I am not an american, but I hardly think so.

Quote:


Quote:
Besides, everything is pointing to the direction that these strikes are actually helping terrorist recruitment by creating victims looking for revenge.
But less organized terrorists. If you DON"T park your ginormous army in their country they can't just hop a plane train or donkeycart to shoot americans: they need a vast network of support to raise the cash and expertise to cross half the planet

If you don't bomb families to pieces, then bomb people who try to rescue them AND don't ocuppy their countries, maybe there will be less people inclined to go through all those lenghts to do such things.

If the moral perspective on the issue cannot convince you, maybe the economics of it might: there are many life risks for human beings. Does the direct and indirect cost of gaining a modicum of safety against terrorist attacks is reasonable given that other much more present risks can be mitigated with a fraction of the money spent on purchasing weapons?

And for that modicum of extra safety you are ok to enable a surveillance state in your country? I remember someone in US having some words about trading liberty for safety...

And even that modicum of safety cannot be taken for granted after all this, because there is no available concrete evidence (except from speeches of government heads) that this is actually helping or not.

Quote:
Quote:
And the idea that it is legal for the US to attack unilaterally citizens from any country that they are not at war with simply by declaring that there is a terrorist among them is, frankly, ridiculous.
Legal in terms of US law or legal in terms of international law?

In terms of international law it sure seems illegal. Unless the US is some rogue state which can ignore such concerns or has declared itself Empire of the World I think it is pretty important. Specially if it wants to keep using international law to chastise other countries...


3 people marked this as a favorite.
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
All right, let's put this in perspective. These "surgical strikes" are killing hundreds if not thousands of Pakistani citizens. Are those acceptable losses to take out a few terrorists? Would you be willing to accept the deaths of everyone else that lives on your block while police were attempting to apprehend one murderer?

There is a difference between right/wrong and "morally equivilant to 9/11"

It doesn't matter, because there is no viable voting option for no reprisals on our part. Your vote could theoretically influence a drone strike vs a messier option.

Quote:
These people are terrified to go to the market. They won't go to the funerals of friends, family, and neighbors. They won't go about their daily lives because they are frightened of being caught in the explosion when a rocket comes down. Is this justifiable? Can we ruin the lives of other people trying to secure our own peace of mind?

I;m more worried about the piece of my mind that's currently in my skull, and a certain minority of folks in the middle east and western asia would like to splatter all over the side walk. They're (justifiably) equally worried about the same thing happening to them. The difference is that the US is sitting on a large pile of military hardware that we really need to find a use for and they're not. When two people are equally worried about staying alive of course the one with the bigger gun is going to live through it. You are not going to convince a significant number of Americans that turning the other cheek is going to work, so thats not an option in a democracy.

Quote:
And no, it is not war. Last I heard, the United States hadn't declared war on Pakistan, which is where these drone strikes are occurring.

Congress has authorized the use of military force against al-Qaeda. Since they're a multinational terrorist organization thats not bound by any border then either is the authorization against them.

And considering...

Yeah, you're probably as equally worried of being killed by terrorists as those guys with killer robots flying over their heads day and night...

Besides, everything is pointing to the direction that these strikes are actually helping terrorist recruitment by creating victims looking for revenge.

And the idea that it is legal for the US to attack unilaterally citizens from any country that they are not at war with simply by declaring that there is a terrorist among them is, frankly, ridiculous.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
Since the topic of drone strikes in Pakistan has come up, this is a major thorn in my side concerning the Obama administration. It's not nearly as neat and clean as he'd like the public to think, and really it's tantamount to the terrorism we're supposedly trying to stop.
The huge difference is we're at least trying to bomb people that genuinely deserve a rocket to the head, as opposed to trying to bomb innocent civilians for the most impact possible. Its war, war is messy, and i think the drone strikes are about the least intrusive and way possible of going about it. I don't think not going about it is a possibility. People were pissed off after 9/11 and if you didn't put someone's head on a platter for it they were going to vote in someone that would.

That "war is messy" line can only be used because the US is one of the few countries which have the capacity nowadays to wage so many wars while keeping the damage at its territory to a minimum. Do you think that the same cool posturing would be possible if enemy nations started sending drones after military in the us and killed lots of civilians while doing it?


5 people marked this as a favorite.
Scott Betts wrote:

Obama is not dealing with the issue as I would like, but I am not privy to even a fraction of the information that he is. President Obama is not the sort of person to casually end Pakistani lives. You are sorely mistaken about the man's character if you believe that he authorizes action like that lightly.

For the record, this mirrors my take on Afghanistan (but not Iraq).

We don't live in a perfect world, and Presidents exist to make hard choices on behalf of their country. What is going on in Pakistan is not good, but our President is not a sociopath. There is not a doubt in my mind that Pakistan doesn't weigh heavily on him, and is responsible for more than a few of his grey hairs. It's an awful situation, and it sours my view of the world, but it does not prevent me from offering the President my full-throated support.

It really takes a special kind of trust to see a man:

a) ordering the killings of thousands of people in a country you are not at war with via remote control;
b) making the conscious effort to hide all information about this program and others;
c) harassing journalists, filmmakers and activists involved in work critical of his foreign policy and civil liberties record;
d) prosecuting and persecuting whistleblowers more than all the other US presidents combined;

and even then, trusting deep down that this man has the best intentions without a mind reading machine.

And even if you're right and Obama is, in fact, a good guy, what will happen when some *sociopath* gets hold of the power Obama conveniently gave him by setting these sorts of precedents?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
GarnathFrostmantle wrote:

I always loved Keith Baker's take on alignment.

Since Eberron was always a pulp theme, I remeber somewhere where he said, "Sometimes characters commit evil acts for the greater good". Or something close to that.

IE, Torturing an intelligent undead for information to protect a village, etc, would be considered fine, as long as you are being not sadistic about it, and getting joy.

Here is a neat little article he did in April of this year
Skadooo

But notice the statement: "sometimes characters commit EVIL acts for the greater good". The fact that the intended outcome is good does not make that action less evil. Thus, good characters can, sometimes, make evil actions. How do we know that he is a good guy? Probably his actions will haunt him; maybe he'll revisit that day in his memory, looking for what he could have done differently in order to save the day without having to taint his soul.

In other words, an evil act does not become good because it is done by a good person, or with good intentions.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

The idea that you can torture sentient beings and remain in the "good" side makes good meaningless. If you define "hurting good people" as an evil action and "hurting evil people" as a good action you make "good" and "evil" just team names, devoid of meaning.

It is usually argued that usually evil beings first commit an evil act before the good guys decide to do the same to them. Well, this reduces the meaning of being "good" to "people that don't pick fights", because after it starts, they are as capable of doing crazy stuff to the other team as the evil guys.

Evil actions are evil. It is not a matter of who is on the receiving end of them.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
loimprevisto wrote:

::mutters blasphemous phrases of the foulest necromancy::

ARISE!

So I came across an interesting article on American facism and the rise of the surveillance state...

We cannot even use Orwell's work as reference anymore because it has been surpassed by reality. Scary. I really hope you people sort this out before it starts spreading to more countries =/


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Quote:

Right, But i think they work better as conclusions based on observation rather than as philosophical assumptions.

Empiricism drops out of any other method we've come up with not working and getting repeatedly getting contradictory answers we know to be false.

Materialism likewise comes from us not seeing anything else. We're not dogmatically materialists, we're pragmatically materialists. There could theoretically be something else there, but since we haven't seen anything else there's really no point in assuming anything else without a good reason

There are no 'conclusions based on observation' without a good dose of rational thinking. Many philosophers tried to establish the conclusions you could derive and those you could not from a purely empirical standpoint (without other assumptions besides what we get from our senses). It is not as easy as it appears. For instance, after much work on it, it is well known that science is, quite clearly, NOT a purely empirical endeavour. The idea that science can be strictly defined as something like "man observes - man hypothesizes about the observed - man observes again to see if their hypotheses are correct" is wrong, for instance.

And pragmatism is a philosophical position. The fact that we live in a time where this position had already been thought through, appeared in books, influenced literature leads us to believe that it is the "natural" way we deal eith the world. It is not. Many societies without a codified pursuit of different philosophical positions did not and do not function based on the tenets of pragmatism. Not even our societies are completely pragmatists, and much of our knowledge and way of life derives from other types of philosophical positions.

Quote:
I think he said 90% of philosophy was malarky and the good 10% was common sense.

I was talking about other poster (Darkwing Duck), but I re-read his post in context and it appears he was saying that some results in science may appear as common sense for the modern person, when it would not for people before those discoveries were made and accepted by society.

Quote:
I agree. The universe is too weird for common sense alone.

Yes it is. And no amount of data collecting can lead to scientific knowledge.

Quote:
You don't test random hypotheses. Something has to give you an idea that the hypothesis is true. Look at the discovery of LSD. The guy who discovered it was pretty sure that it was the chemical he was working with that was causing his hallucinations and not a bad lunch, tiredness, brain tumor etc. He had to test it to be sure though, so he delibrately dosed himself with it and he was right. (unfortunately the poor guy was less correct about the right dose...)

I presumed you were talking about this, but I wanted to be sure. You are scratching the surface here. Observations usually act merely as a motivator. Only rarely can one derive strict hypothetical statements from data. See, for instance, Newtonian Mechanics. Newton did not look at a bunch of data and created that set of hypothesis. In fact, the data used by Newton was very scarce. Observation cannot explain the construction of hypothesis in science. The role of observationial data in science comes AFTERWARDS, and it is never (or at least very, very rarely) purely observational in nature. All observation in science is "laced" with theory.

The scientific method is much more fluid than we are led to think by textbook descriptions of it (which, of course, were first proposed by philosophers). It is a quite interesting intellectual endeavour to try to understand its logical and philosophical foundations. Many philosophers have tried to do exactly that and the result for those who decide to learn about it is a better comprehension of the activity. It is interesting even when the philosophers are wrong, because you end up seeing the process from other angles.

Quote:
Philosophy doesn't help decide between different matters of thought either. Philosophy has been working on the existence of God for how long now?

From this quote I can tell that you are primarily concerned with "philosophy as a tool for verifying what is real and its behaviour". Well, tinkering with philosophical ideas throughout the ages led to the concept of a scientific method and it helped with this part of the problem. Philosophy already contributed to it. Now, try to use the scientific method to derive moral laws. Or understand art, knowledge, ethics and politics. You cannot, because philosophers did not design this tool for those activities. Philosophy, on the other hand has been used and is used for all those. And let me tell you, our history has been shaped in the way it has in great part, for good or evil, because of philosophical ideas.

Quote:
Well, we've never not had realism. People have always known that stuff is here. What we haven't had is sola realism or only realism: the idea that this stuff is ALL we've got.

Yup, that is basically what I said, realism was here since forever. Though it's consequences were not thought out and made explicit for centuries. It is called naive realism, as in opposition to critical realism.

Quote:

As to why it took so long a few things

I think it took so long because humans (and other critters) are hard wired to see patterns. A false positive costs you less than a false negative. If you develop a belief that a rustling bush always means a saber toothed tiger you'll live longer than both the person who beleives that it NEVER means a saber toothed tiger as well as the person who only thinks its a saber toothed tiger sometimes.

I agree that humans have this characteristic. But if scientific inquiry is natural, it should have ocurred to many people before thousands of years of human history came to be. One might argue we did not have the means then, and there were lots of 'scientific minds' waiting for the opportunities to create...

Quote:
Experimental science is expensive. For the vast majority of human history we've been largely subsistance. We haven't had the ability to produce large numbers of "spare" people who are sitting around learning for their entire lives.

Well the greek high castes, for instance (and this is only an example), had loads of spare time. And they used it quite well, but not with science. The closest they had to it was 'natural philosophy', which ended up being quite important for science, but nowhere near in form to what we think of as science. So I have to disagree with the 'lack of time' explanation.

Quote:
Furthermore the people we did have learning didn't talk to each other much. I don't think its a coincidence that the scientific revolution and the printing press* happened together. Ideas take a lot of people to form well. What one person thinks sparks something else in another person which someone else pass it on... people could stand on the shoulders of giants because the giants were shouting HERE I AM! in the light rather than hiding behind secrecy and ritual in the dark.

The press certainly helped A LOT the process. But it took at least two centuries for science to start taking the shape we came to know. And philosophers like Bacon and Descartes, and the 'natural philosopher/scientist' Galileo, all had an important role in taking the singular method used by astronomers with their own considerations to forge ideas which would shape our world forever.

There are few movements of world history which were not anticipated by philosophical ideas. The fact that many of those which helped forge the future acknowledge it should give you a hint that, perhaps, philosophy is not that limited, small, useless thing you have come to think. The very foundation of US law, its Constitution, was strongly inspired by philosophical thought.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

This topic is itself a statement in favour of philosophy. Namely, it would help people who are interested in science, or even scientists themselves not to grossly misrepresent its logical foundations.

For instance, the claim that "science is solely based on observation" and that "science is basically an extension of common sense" could not be farther from the truth.

Science is a theoretical activity concerning reality. It implies a philosophical stance (namely, realism), whether the scientist likes philosophy or not, or he recognizes it or not. Many scientists and scientific-minded folks claim to follow or believe in sets of principles which are in fact based on the philosophy of positivism which is antithetical to the very scientific activity it tried to defend.

The failure to understand scientific activity in philosophical grounds led many scientists to make absurd assertions concerning their very job. This was most notable during the development of quantum mechanics.

Science as an area of knowledge demands a set of presuppositions and is guided by some logical imperatives which can only be properly understood by philosophical inquiry.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

What I don't get is that, apparently, the OP's point is basically "same rules, better organized presentation". People are actually arguing against this ?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
pinvendor wrote:


Yet, that's not the point I was making. I am not asking anyone to step away from their beliefs in any. I am merely pointing out that all theories as to the origin of man's existence, of life on this planet of ours, all require blind faith. Not one idea about man's origins can be proven based on the evidence at hand.

You appear to have the wrong idea about science. Evidence does not "prove" theories. It supports them. This is as true for Darwinian Evolution as it is for Electromagnetism or Newtonian Mechanics. Kirth just laid for you evidence which supports Evolution theory and you say scientists give it credit due to "blind faith".


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Hill Giant wrote:
I also dislike the term "scientist". It implies that only certain people can do science, when in fact everyone does science (to various degrees of rigor). It also tells me nothing about the person, since it does not speak to how he or she applies science.

Well, we do need a name for our job ;)

I partially disagree with the "everyone does science" statement. The use of the scientific method, however loosely defined it might be, is implicit in the construction of scientific knowledge. It is, of course, possible to not have any formal degree, or education, and be a scientist (take Faraday as an example). But doing science is not something which is associated to all means of rational or empirical knowledge pursuit.
Besides, being a scientist is an occupation (formal or informal). Saying that the term implies only certain people can do science is like saying the term "trader" implies that only certain people can trade stuff.

On the other hand, I completely agree with your second statement. The mere fact of being a scientist doesn't exclude the possibility of being sloppy or (worse) a moron.