Dagens ord

Ansvar väger tyngre än frihet - Responsibility trumps liberty

26 sep. 2015

Torbjörn Tännsjö - Yttrandefrihet i trängt läge

Torbjörn Tännsjö - Yttrandefrihet i trängt läge. Föreläsning för elever vid Falkenbergs gymnasieskola, 25 september 2015. ‪#‎natvetplus‬

17 sep. 2015

Franzen om USA

[...] Outside, the sky was cloudless and nicked with random dull stars, their contextualizing constellations obscured by light and dust pollution. The Texas Panhandle was in year five of a drought that might soon be upgraded to permanent climate change. Instead of April snow-melt, dust. 
[...] To drive east on Amarillo Boulevard was to pass, in quick succession, the high-security Clements Unit prison complex, the McCaskill meat-processing facility, and the Pantex nuclear-weapons plant, three massive installations more alike than different in their brute utility and sodium-vapor lighting. In the rearview mirror were the evangelical churches, the Tea Party precincts, the Whataburgers. Ahead, the gas and oil wells, the fracking rigs, the overgrazed ranges, the feedlots, the depleted aquifer. Every facet of Amarillo a testament to a nation of bad-ass firsts: first in prison population, first in meat consumption, first in operational strategic warheads, first in per-capita carbon emissions, first in line for the Rapture. Whether American liberals liked it or not, Amarillo was how the rest of the world saw their country.
Leila liked it. She came from the blue part of Texas, and from a time when the blue part was larger, but she still loved the whole state, not just San Antonio and the Gulf-softened winters and the burning green of the mesquite in spring but the in-your-face ugliness of the red parts. The embrace of ugliness; the eager manufacture of it; the capacity of Texan pride to see beauty in it. And the exceptional courtesy of the drivers, the enduring apartness of the old republic, the assurance of being a shining example to the nation. Texans looked down on the other foty-nine states with a gracious kind of pity.

Jonathan Franzen, Purity, s. 171-173

12 sep. 2015

Ten (More) Commandments of Logic


Källa: Internet

1'. He who recycles an argument that has been refuted, is a goofball.

2'. If your opinion sounds awkward with a different wording, it is.

3’. Just because your argument fails utterly in one case doesn’t make it right.

4’. If we know it, it’s not an assumption.

5’. Thou shalt not claim that because A doesn’t cause B, A cannot imply B.

6’. Thou shalt reduce the argument down to two possibilities. Or better, one.

7’. Thou shalt not argue that because of our ignorance, a statement might be neither true nor false.

8’. Thou shalt not lay the burden of proof onto him who just proved his claim.

9’. Thou shalt not assume “this” cannot follow from “that” just because you don’t see a connection.

10’. Thou shalt not argue that because an idea is popular, it must be a conspiracy.

5 sep. 2015

Kräver utilitarismen för mycket av oss?

En aktuell uppgift i kursen Naturvetenskap+

I slutet av den tredje och hittills sista filmen i serien Ethics: Utilitarianism (Wireless Philosophy) säger Julia Markovits att utöver de problem som hon redan har tagit upp - vilka pekar på att utilitarismen kräver för lite av oss - så verkar det också vara så att utilitarismen kräver för mycket av oss. (Detta ämnar Markovits ta upp i en kommande film.)
Kan du själv, redan nu, fundera ut på vilket sätt utilitarismen skulle kunna innebära till synes orimligt höga krav på oss alla?

Finns det i så fall något samband mellan, å ena sidan, dessa krav och, å andra sidan, filosofen Derek Parfits s.k. motbjudande slutsats (repugnant conclusion)?

Den motbjudande slutsatsen diskuteras i bl.a. texterna You Should Have Kids (Torbjörn Tännsjö) och Do Humans Have a Moral Duty to Stop Procreating? Känner du igen detta resonemang från den andra av de tre filmerna i serien ovan?

Och hur var det nu med filosofen Robert Nozicks nytto-monster?


Tips #1: Gör tanke-experimentet Det drunknande barnet

Tips #2: Kolla upp filosofen Peter Singer, t.ex. hans senaste bok, The Most Good You Can Do

Tips #3: Sverige för UNHCR

Peter Singer
Peter Singer. Foto: Todd Huffman [CC BY 2.0]

3 sep. 2015

Libertariansk paternalism, valarkitektur och tvång

Jag läser allt oftare påståenden som detta, från "beteende-ekonomer" och andra - oftast amerikaner:

Choice architecture plays a vital role in determining what decisions people make. Some ways of structuring decisions result in better outcomes for individuals and for society than other ways of structuring decisions. No-one is hurt by opt-out procedures for things like organ donation; no coercion is involved because people who wish not to have their organs harvested are free to decline.

(Nisbett, Mindware, s. 97-98. Min kursivering)

Vi lever i en turbulent tid. Vänstern är den nya högern. Och högern är - uppenbarligen - den nya vänstern. Men den gör ett förvirrat och halvhjärtat jobb. Citatet ovan vittnar om en förbluffande naivitet - eller är det förträngning, desperation eller cynism (riktad mot vem, kan man fråga).


Uppdatering 22/12

Kajsa Ekis Ekman: Nudge, nudge