My attempt at an ethical system and equation and how we can scientifically proo a "moral ought" - not epistemologically.

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Cortez48
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My attempt at an ethical system and equation and how we can scientifically proo a "moral ought" - not epistemologically.

Post by Cortez48 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:24 pm

End 2016 I made a few posts about vegan related topics on this site. I had a discussion about them with different people but stopped replying since I wanted to get into a few other things in the main time like nutrition, sports, education, hobby's, other scientific/philosophic/political topics and such...

In 2017 I now and then followed a lot of vegan YouTubers like Vegan Gains, Ask Yourself (I still need to finish watching the debate between Philo and Isaac), Footsoldier, Cory McCarthy and recently Perspective Philosophy.
YouTube account is "IJ OP" btw. I am an avid YouTuber who follows about 500 channels (some of them vegan). I also frequent longecity.org and nutritionfacts.org under username "leon93".

Now here comes the topic which is in fact partly influenced by debates between Perspective Philosophy, Isaac, Richard (Vegan Gains), Footsoldier and even former books I've read years ago like Sam Harris's "The Moral Landscape" and the Challenge thereafter. Even Peter Singer comes to mind.

Since I am convinced humans, animals and all their behavior, thoughts and even moral systems are nothing more than a result of sub-atomic particles and laws of physics, our minds and thoughts might one day be accurately predicted by technological ways. So our subjectivity, preferences and morals may one day be layed out by science. Even lying could in theory be predicted. There already are machines which can pre-determine human behavior by seven seconds before it subconsciously arises in that human (which I got from one of Vsauce's "Mind Field" episodes with Derek Muller and Physics Girl).

Atm we can already make theories about human behavior by observations (what humans prefer).
From there we theoretically can build quantifiable equations about human behavior (based on experiments, observations and the proof of a working central nervous system for now, and more accurate technological machines and better laws of physics later which take neurochemistry and brain structures into account as well), and try to predict those as accurately and reliable as possible. Preferably and ideally, this is how behavioural theories 'desire' to work.
Off course, the only input (axioms) of ethics however is something people would have to agree on. But off course - that's not a problem.

My equation (put simply) is this: x+(y•z)
X= mental suffering (which partly might be based on intelligence and consciousness - whatever that is lol) and physical pain versus well-being and happiness.
Y= killing/murder of living beings
Z= benevolence-malevolence 'ratio' -> Strangely enough, I have *no-one* ever hear argueing about this trait yet - when I am of opinion this is an extremely important one. No vegan or philosopher ever.

I'll gladly explan more on the 'benevolence-malevolence ratio'. Personally, I am of opinion my moral system is superior and more 'accurate' than other moral systems I've yet heard of.

B and c 'have to' work together which is why I put these in multiplication.

Still, I'm not 'extremely' confident on consciousness and intelligence into this equation (yet) since I am doubtful if these traits yet matter. But for the most part I do think they belong there. Also, unlike sentience (nociception), consciousness is a term on which philosophers and scientists havent agreed yet. Even things like knowledge or empathetic capabilities matter here as well, but we can make this sub-parts of intelligence if we want to. Environmentalism and climate change are also part in the equation, since they obviously impact well-being/suffering etc.

My system can determine what outcome is more ethical in certain situations.
In fact - it can even do so on 'moral oughts'. Moral ought as in: what the most *desirable* outcome is, based on the axioms of a particular 'best' system humans agree on.

All we have to do here is input a few axioms about what ethics is about which humans agree on: the most desirable outcome for beings which fit into the equation I listed earlier, on factors which I put into the equation (well-being/happiness versus physical pain and suffering), based on a further ethical system like utilitarian consequentialism. As long as humans agree on this moral system, we can determine the most preferable outcome for the beings in the equation. But off course, we arent obligated to follow it. It very likely just is the most moral act one/many can do at a particular moment.

To add: I am an utilitarian rule consequentialist and for 70-90% I'm a hard determinist, with the remaining part being compatibilistic. The only closest thing to a deontological rule I accept is rape, but even for rape I might convey certain hypothetical situations in which utilitarian consequentialism prevails. And no, hypotheticals like '3 guys raping 1 girl produces more well-being for the 3 versus her' isnt what I am saying. Using the methods I provided earlier (neuro brain scans, observing human behavior etc.), suffering can be quantified *way* better. Since the suffering for the girl (and potential child) would lead to a *far* higher suffering hit for them (lets say 1/2•-0,9) than the well-being *plus* for the degenerate rapists (3•0.15). Also, trust me, many guys would not find rape okay btw.
Also, since pleasure is fleeting and there are alternatives in certain situations (masturbation vs rape, vegan alternatives vs meat), actions like murder and rape would be ranked extremely negative. In fact, I personally atm (but that only is n=1 without any experiment/observation/survey etc.) wouldnt even rank 1 cow being unneccesarily slaughtered as lower result happiness than the joy million of people got out of it.
Then there is also the malevolence-benevolence ratio to make stuff even more complicated...

Even different scales of insect bites can be used here (which are then further concerted by brain scans into individual outcomes for different individuals).

Once a equation is established (which also takes into account things like S&M, 'self-destructive' behavior in situations in which boredom is experienced (or any other situation in which the happiness result experienced is greater than any suffering)), it will be become more reliable over time as long as it isnt 'debunked'. It can finally result as a serious falsifiable theory which can accurately predict and make statements about ethical questions/situations.

In fact, in the end it might even accurately (not from an epistemological viewpoint but a scientific one) make standments about (chances) if someone is lying or being a hypocrite.

So yeah basically, this equation has to take into account A LOT. I don't say it is easy, just that it is theoretically possible.

We can also use parts of this logic and evidence to better value theories (f.e., if glory, stoicism and self-respect is better than promiscuity).

PhilRisk
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Post by PhilRisk » Thu Oct 18, 2018 7:12 am

I have some remarks, which might lead to a clarification of your view
Cortez48 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:24 pm

My equation (put simply) is this: x+(y•z)
X= mental suffering (which partly might be based on intelligence and consciousness - whatever that is lol) and physical pain versus well-being and happiness.
Y= killing/murder of living beings
Z= benevolence-malevolence 'ratio' -> Strangely enough, I have *no-one* ever hear argueing about this trait yet - when I am of opinion this is an extremely important one. No vegan or philosopher ever.
Technically, you are not giving any equation here. There is no equality sign. This is a little nitpicking, but you reflect on your use of technical expressions. Your so called equation appeals to a level of formalization, which is not justified by your arguments. Therefore, I do not see how your account can be said to be more
'accurate'
Why do you use inverted commas here? Do you mean "accurate" or do you not believe in it being accurate?
I a high value or low value good? Your equation seems to be strange as it would give a high value for a lot of suffering, killing and a high benevolence-malevolence 'ratio'. Why did you write it with inverted commas for "ratio".
Cortez48 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:24 pm
To add: I am an utilitarian rule consequentialist and for 70-90% I'm a hard determinist, with the remaining part being compatibilistic. The only closest thing to a deontological rule I accept is rape, but even for rape I might convey certain hypothetical situations in which utilitarian consequentialism prevails. And no, hypotheticals like '3 guys raping 1 girl produces more well-being for the 3 versus her' isnt what I am saying. Using the methods I provided earlier (neuro brain scans, observing human behavior etc.), suffering can be quantified *way* better. Since the suffering for the girl (and potential child) would lead to a *far* higher suffering hit for them (lets say 1/2•-0,9) than the well-being *plus* for the degenerate rapists (3•0.15). Also, trust me, many guys would not find rape okay btw.
Also, since pleasure is fleeting and there are alternatives in certain situations (masturbation vs rape, vegan alternatives vs meat), actions like murder and rape would be ranked extremely negative. In fact, I personally atm (but that only is n=1 without any experiment/observation/survey etc.) wouldnt even rank 1 cow being unneccesarily slaughtered as lower result happiness than the joy million of people got out of it.
Then there is also the malevolence-benevolence ratio to make stuff even more complicated...
You are stating to be a rule consequentialist. So, I assume you want to assess rules with your so called equation. What kind of possible rules do you have in mind? I ask this, because you are writing to only accept rules against rape. If your a rule conseuqentialist your a account should lead to a set of rules, they just have the same appearance as deontological rules. If you want to know the deontic status of an act, you have to test, whether it is good regarding your rules.
Rule consuequentialism is account of a specific justification for rules, but the rules play the same role in decision making.

Cortez48
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Post by Cortez48 » Sat Oct 20, 2018 2:57 pm

@ Technically, you are not giving any equation here. There is no equality sign. This is a little nitpicking, but you reflect on your use of technical expressions. Your so called equation appeals to a level of formalization, which is not justified by your arguments. Therefore, I do not see how your account can be said to be more

Yes you are correct. I forgot the equality sign (I wanted to add it after posting my post but noticed I couldn't do IT right away.
So it would have been UC=x+(y•z). UC being utilitarian consequentialism. I do not quite understand your further remarks/critique.

@ Why do you use inverted commas here? Do you mean "accurate" or do you not believe in it being accurate?
I a high value or low value good? Your equation seems to be strange as it would give a high value for a lot of suffering, killing and a high benevolence-malevolence 'ratio'. Why did you write it with inverted commas for "ratio".

Well... I don't know the difference between one comma and two... ':D I guess the ratio commas arent in place.

Also, I have been reflecting on the equation in the main time and come to see it just isnt entirely correct. I think the variables are still legit part of the equation, but the math just doesnt seem to apply accurately. I need to change it. I'm still working on it.

@
You are stating to be a rule consequentialist. So, I assume you want to assess rules with your so called equation. What kind of possible rules do you have in mind? I ask this, because you are writing to only accept rules against rape. If your a rule conseuqentialist your a account should lead to a set of rules, they just have the same appearance as deontological rules. If you want to know the deontic status of an act, you have to test, whether it is good regarding your rules.
Rule consuequentialism is account of a specific justification for rules, but the rules play the same role in decision making.

The rules (just like the deontology example I made) are to be followed in general. This is because I think in general with all things being equal, it is better to help each other constructively rather than destructively. It is also since hypotheticals are just very unlikely - but not impossible.
Well I said rape is what comes *closest* to an deontological rule, not that it is one. That is because I believe that in general (in a lot of cases) the negative consequences to the victim and the potential child are far worse than any possible benefit to the criminals. But surely enough, yes, there can be extremely unlikely hypotheticals in which rape might actually be the most moral cause of action.
Then again, also things like murder or capital punishment come close to a deontological rule, but not as often as rape.
Using the methods I provided earlier (observations, experiments, surveys and technological innovations in neuroscience etc. later), science can fill in all these variables and come to concusions.

PhilRisk
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Post by PhilRisk » Tue Oct 30, 2018 5:36 am

Now you have an equality sign, but I do not see, what the meaning of "UC" is. What does it apply to? Do you want to assign it to acts or to rules? Should this value be maximized or how is it applied? This is entangled with the last point about rule conseuquentialism.

I did not wanted to say anything about the use of single or double commas. I do not think, there is a general difference. They can be used to mark two different types of signs, for example in quotation.
I used the marks for "accurate" to sign a mentioning of the word without using it. In the second place with "'ratio'" I simply took your spelling as I referred to the object and not the word.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Use%E2%80 ... istinction
My question is: Do you think your approach is accurate or not? Is the term in the equation a ratio or not? Why use the inverted commas, if you think it is accurate?

You seem to be a little bit confused about rule consequentialism. What you describe is not rule consequentialism, because you value actions based on the consequences of a single action. If an action has a specific value it is trivial to say, it has the same with all things being equal. But this does not lead to a rule. You seem to be mistaken about the term "rule consequentialism".

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