ForumsWEPRTHE GREAT DEBATES! (Rd. 6 Results)

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Moegreche
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Moegreche
3,574 posts
Duke

Some of you may remember The Great Debates thread from years past. Some thought it was fun, and some thought it was just too heavy.

So I thought I'd bring things back, but with a twist! The basic idea is still the same: two users will debate on a topic. The difference is that you won't get to pick the topic or which side you'll be arguing for.

Oh, and I almost forgot - the topics are going to be somewhat ... silly But that doesn't mean your argument has to be silly. In fact, if you can defend your silly point in a serious way, you might just earn yourself a merit! So it's not about winners or losers, it's about whether you can argue for, well, just about anything!

RULES:

- I will provide three possible topics for debate. If you'd like to participate, then you can SIGN-UP HERE in the Art, Music, and Writing forum: click here

- Once 6 people (at least for now) have signed up for the current three topics, the signup thread will close and the debates will begin

- Assignments will be given on this thread (who will be debating for which topic and what side).
**NOTE** You are signing up to play. Which topic you get and what side you'll be arguing for will be decided randomly. So be prepared!

- You will only have 1 post in which to give your argument, so make it count! Keep in mind that your argument should stand on its own. So don't quote your opponent and just shoot down their arguments. But you should also anticipate potential objections and try to respond to them.

- Merit-earners will present well-reasoned and genuine arguments in favour of their position - even in the face of some pretty silly topics. What that means is that, if users on opposite sides each give great arguments, they would both earn merits!

- A loosely enforced time limit (which has yet to be officially established) will be in place. Once that time limit is reached, the next round will begin.

Good luck! And let the return of The Great Debates begin!

  • 224 Replies
Moegreche
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Moegreche
3,574 posts
Duke

@TheRed555 - You continue to make some excellent points. I was on the fence about whether which position was correct, but you've pretty much convinced me that pursuing happiness is better than avoiding unhappiness. If you want to participate again in the future (and I really hope that do!) just take these great ideas and really spend some time with them. You should shoot for something about 5 paragraphs long, with each paragraph doing a particular job for you. So in the first paragraph, you could set up the problem and give your view. Then in the second you explain why your view is correct. In the third, you could give examples (or cases, as we like to call them in the philosophy biz) that support your claim. And then spend the rest of the time looking at and responding to objections. I bet in your native language you would absolutely crush this thing!

@KentyBK - Yeah, I don't blame you at all for not looking at that objection. I doubt it would've gone anywhere anyway. It's especially hard for me to think of objections to your views because I personally vehemently agree with pretty much everything you argued for. On a side note, I don't think understanding is a species of knowledge, but this would be an entire argument in and of itself!

Moegreche
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Moegreche
3,574 posts
Duke

After an embarrassingly long amount of time, I've finally gotten around to awarding merits and/or quests to the participants for Round 2. I fully intend on making this more regular, starting this weekend.

In the meantime, if you participated but didn't receive a merit/quest, feel free to ask me why on my profile. It could just be that I missed it, or it could just be Disqus taking 3 days to update

At any rate, I hope you guys are looking forward to Round 3 in the next few days! I'll put the sign up sheet in the normal place (the AMW thread) once things are ready to go on my end.

Moegreche
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Moegreche
3,574 posts
Duke

After quite a lull there, Round 3 of The Great Debates is getting ready to start. Please make sure to read the rules and how things work (found on page 1 of this thread) before signing up. Once you're ready, the sign up thread is in the AMW section. Here's the link:

Be sure to get your name in quickly as spaces are limited. And don't forget about those yummy quests and merits that you can earn! Happy debating!

riku_ullman
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riku_ullman
1,147 posts
Blacksmith

do we start?

nichodemus
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nichodemus
14,868 posts
Viceroy

Not yet Riku, the sign ups aren't closed yet.

Moegreche
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Moegreche
3,574 posts
Duke

All right, everyone. Round 3 of The Great Debates has officially commenced! Below you will find your name below a question, so that's the one you've been assigned. Here are a few things to keep in mind.

1) You're not competing against anyone here - we're just focused on giving tight arguments. So don't worry about what anyone else is doing.

2) A good argument is tightly focused and will anticipate and respond to objections.

3) If you're confused about a question or would like to ask me something, it's probably best to ask here. My Disqus comments seem to be behaving weirdly.

4) Remember that I give feedback after you post your argument. You can, if you like, revise and resubmit if there are things you overlooked or would like to shore up.

Anyway, here are the questions. Good luck and have fun!

People in affluent countries are morally obligated to give to charity for those in poor countries.
@danielo
@RaonAbsoluteZERO

People in affluent countries are *not* morally obligated to give to charity for those in poor countries.
@pangtongshu
@DarthTyrannausarus

We can know that we're not being radically decieved (e.g. that we're in the Matrix).
@09philj
@nichodemus

We *cannot* know that we're not being radically decieved (e.g. that we're in the Matrix).
@R2D21999
@Minotaur55

Ferrets are better animals than horses.
@Ferret
@ellock

Horses are better animals that ferrets.
@Lowco1
@michaelandhsm2

When is having an abortion morally permissible? (take whatever stance you like here)
@MoonFairy
@Frank_Frooton
@apldeap123
@JACKinbigletters

Carrots are more valuable than bananas.
@Kennethhartanto
@nivlac724

Bananas are more valuable than carrots.
@riku_ullman
@Laspa

Assess and respond to this argument (either in favour or against):
1) It's already either true or false that you will eat dinner tomorrow.
2) If it's already either true or false that you will eat dinner tomorrow, then there's nothing you can do to change that fact.
3) If there's nothing you can do to change some fact, then you lack free will in that respect.
4) Therefore, you lack free will over whether you will eat dinner tomorrow.
@Katrose
@Hahiha
@Nerdsoft
@xXxDAPRO89xXx

nichodemus
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nichodemus
14,868 posts
Viceroy

I knew not attending the additional module on The Matrix would bite me in the *** one day haha.

R2D21999
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R2D21999
18,314 posts
Templar

We *cannot* know that we're not being radically decieved


Sorry, I haven't seen the Matrix so I don't understand too well.

So basically if a man offers me ice cream, I will know that he will not lie and will give me ice cream?
Moegreche
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Moegreche
3,574 posts
Duke

I knew not attending the additional module on The Matrix would bite me in the *** one day haha.


Well, poo. I was hoping that I had given you something you could have fun with since you've been such a help to me. Sorry about that!

So basically if a man offers me ice cream, I will know that he will not lie and will give me ice cream?


You're right that someone could lie to you and deceive you, but this is bigger - much bigger. In the film The Matrix, all of the world around us is actually just a computer simulation. Almost everyone on Earth believes lots of things: that they have a job, drive a car, have kids, etc. But all of this is a simulation - it's not real.

This is a philosophical possibility. It could be that everything we're perceiving isn't real and there's no way we could tell the difference. Your job is to argue that we cannot know that we're not being deceived like this. The tricky part is getting from this statement:
We can't tell whether or not we're in a simulation.
to this statement:
We cannot know that that we're not in a simulation (Alternatively: We cannot know that what we see around is real).

Does that make sense? If not, I can try explaining it another way, maybe
HahiHa
online
HahiHa
7,756 posts
Grand Duke

My answer against the proposed argument:

1) It's already either true or false that you will eat dinner tomorrow.
2) If it's already either true or false that you will eat dinner tomorrow, then there's nothing you can do to change that fact.
3) If there's nothing you can do to change some fact, then you lack free will in that respect.
4) Therefore, you lack free will over whether you will eat dinner tomorrow.


The first premise is a truism. The second is also logically true, but it is formulated deceptively. You cannot change the fact that you will either have dinner tomorrow or not; however you can still freely decide for either case. Whether or not you have free will has no effect on that statement.

The third point is false. Free will is the ability to make free decisions; it does not imply omnipotency, and thus other factors might prevent you from being able to do something.

As a consequence, the conclusion is also false. You cannot predict whether you will have dinner tomorrow or not, but your free will is not impaired by that.

This is of course all under the assumption that free will is theoretically possible. I have reasons to think it is not, but those have nothing to do with the argument presented here. The argument fails in that aspect.
nichodemus
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nichodemus
14,868 posts
Viceroy

Well, poo. I was hoping that I had given you something you could have fun with since you've been such a help to me. Sorry about that!

That doesn't mean I didn't read up on radical skepticism before haha! It'll be fun, I'll try and do this one justice.

So basically if a man offers me ice cream, I will know that he will not lie and will give me ice cream?

Worse, skeptics propose that you won't even know if there exists such a man or ice cream.

Frank_Frooton
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Frank_Frooton
4,008 posts
Herald

I thought the arguments were supposed to be light and fluffy.
Frankly, I don't believe abortion is morally permissible in any way. It's practically capital punishment to an under aged minor who has done absolutely no crime.
If the mother really didn't want her child, why not give it to an orphanage?
Why not let it live to, say, the age of thirteen and then decide if the kid should die? Because neither the mother nor the doctors can stand killing an intelligent being that actually has a chance. They have to kill it before it can do anything, before it can form opinions of its own on the matter of his/her own life and death.
Also, I'm just going to use it most of the time because it's annoying to write he/she every single time.

apldeap123
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apldeap123
1,707 posts
Blacksmith

Before I take my stance, I have a question: Are the debates strictly secular, or can I bring theology into this?

09philj
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09philj
2,832 posts
Scribe

And now to defend the indefensible. (Curse you Moegreche! Seriously, the point of Brain-in-a-vat is that it's undisprovable.)

Since there is no way to prove that we are not being radically deceived, we're going to have to go for a very left field argument. Since there is no evidence that we are or aren't being radically deceived, we must therefore assume the deception is perfect, in that it is identical to external reality. Now, imagine that I have two spoons. The spoons are the same on a subatomic level, and are thus truly identical. As we cannot determine which spoon is which, we could say that they are the same spoon. Now, imagine that I have a fork, and you don't know what a spoon is so accept it as fact when I say it's a spoon. Since you don't know that forks aren't spoons, and have no reason to doubt me, you must accept that forks are spoons. Therefore, I argue that deception is the same as reality when we don't know what reality is.

Note that the above is utter rubbish.

pangtongshu
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pangtongshu
9,868 posts
Scribe

People in affluent countries are *not* morally obligated to give to charity for those in poor countries.


YESYESYES!

I have work in a bit, so my response will not be tonight. But I'm so ready for this oh lawd BD
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