Tuesday, June 22, 2010

263 : Francis Fukuyama

Francis Fukuyama was born in Chicago in 1952. is best known as the author of The End of History and the Last Man(1992), in which he argued

that the progression of human history as a struggle between ideologies is largely at an end, with the world settling on liberal democracy after the end of the Cold War and the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.

Fukuyama predicted the eventual global triumph of political and economic liberalism: (a quote from "The End of History and the Last Man")

"What we may be witnessing is not just the end of the Cold War, or the passing of a particular period of post-war history, but the end of history as such;

that is, the end point of mankind's ideological evolution and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human government."

His "end of History" idea got a lot of publicity, although it was formulated already before by Alexandre Kojève, born in 1902 and French statesman after World War II.

His well-known "End of History" thesis advanced the idea that ideological history in a limited sense had ended with the French Revolution and the regime of Napoleon and that there was no longer a need for violent struggle to establish the "rational supremacy of the regime of rights and equal recognition."

The link between Fukuyama and Kojève runs though the American philosopher Allen Bloom, who had been a student of Kojève.

Fukuyama had an empirical argument for his thesis. Since the beginning of the 19th Century, there has been a move for States to adopt some form of liberal democracy as its government.

Philosophically he assumed that based on our rationality we could nothing else than eventually conclude that the roles of master and slave are unsatisfying and self-defeating and that the desire of equality would prevail.

With the end of history Fukuyama did not mean that time had stopped and nothing would happen anymore, but that ideological conflict would have come to an end and that governments would use the framework of parliamentary democracy and economically a system of free markets.

Does this mean that he simply said that the US governmental system would be the final stage of society, its liberalism? Fukuyama was quite clear about this assumption.

"The End of History was never linked to a specifically American model of social or political organization. Following Alexandre Kojève, the Russian-French philosopher who inspired my original argument,

I believe that the European Union more accurately reflects what the world will look like at the end of history than the contemporary United States.

The EU's attempt to transcend sovereignty and traditional power politics by establishing a transnational rule of law is much more in line with a "post-historical" world than the Americans' continuing belief in God, national sovereignty, and their military."

After everything of political philosophy we have seen so far this all sound attractive. Just look at the graphic behind me. I also can add that the democratic peace theory argues that there is statistical evidence that democracy decreases systematic violence such as external and internal wars and conflicts.

But what did Popper say in my lecture two days ago?

History does not evolve in accordance with intrinsic laws or principles, that in the absence of such laws and principles unconditional prediction in the social sciences is an impossibility, and that there is no such thing as historical necessity.

Some ideas cross my mind. Maybe we shouldn't see this "End of History" thesis not as a political development stage, but as an evolutionary result.

And then, Samuel P. Huntington, in his essay and book, "The Clash of Civilizations,"(1996) argues that the temporary conflict between ideologies is being replaced by the ancient conflict between civilizations. The dominant civilization decides the form of human government, and these will not be constant.

In his thesis, he argued that the primary axis of conflict in the future will be along cultural and religious lines. This would mean that history simply continues.

The Discussion

[13:17] herman Bergson: So much on Fukuyama
[13:18] Jerome Ronzales: he wasa clever guy!
[13:18] herman Bergson: If you have any questions or remakrks..go ahead
[13:18] Gemma Cleanslate: interesting
[13:18] Gemma Cleanslate: stil is clever
[13:18] Repose Lionheart: Religion inhabits the blind spot of American academics like Fukuyama...but it is still there. Astonishing that he forgot Islam, which deeply motivates one fifth of our species, and the world's 20,000 other religions.
[13:19] Repose Lionheart: Ideology is alive and well
[13:19] Gemma Cleanslate: well i do not think he did
[13:19] Repose Lionheart: oh
[13:19] herman Bergson: No he is well aware of Islam, I just didnt mention it...
[13:20] Repose Lionheart: hmmmm...seems like a signal lapse, then
[13:20] herman Bergson: Bu tthat relates more to the clash of cultures as our future
[13:20] Repose Lionheart: ok
[13:20] Repose Lionheart: different levels of analysis, i see
[13:20] Repose Lionheart: Agree with what you say about the EU as model, Prof
[13:21] herman Bergson: What I think is more interesting is the idea that this all is not a historical process but an evolutionary process
[13:21] Gemma Cleanslate: every time someone mentions something like that with usa canada mexico almost starts a war
[13:21] herman Bergson: I didnt say that Fukuyama did
[13:21] Jerome Ronzales: maybe he didnt want to islam " religion" joined facts of the same side of the coin..
[13:22] Alaya Kumaki: that is also what i find out this morning.. look ill copy paste
[13:22] Bruce Mowbray thinks: Evolutionary - as in Darwinian?
[13:22] Gemma Cleanslate: all we need is one alien to show up and we will all be a union!
[13:22] herman Bergson: Yes Bruce....
[13:22] Bruce Mowbray: Survival of the fittest...?
[13:22] herman Bergson: No....
[13:23] herman Bergson: more in the sense of the neurobiological development of the organism....
[13:23] Bruce Mowbray: ... of the most capable of adaptation...
[13:23] herman Bergson: At this moment a scientific revolution is going on....
[13:23] Repose Lionheart: interesting....
[13:24] Alaya Kumaki: is it the continuity of what was written as a sense of belonging to something..a project already started
[13:24] Jerome Ronzales: other issues certainly appeared in his mind, why are he narrowing it..
[13:24] herman Bergson: Neurobiology entered the field of philosophy with all its brain scanners
[13:24] Jerome Ronzales: ah
[13:25] herman Bergson: When believing becomes an activity of a defined area of the brain...we can define the reason why people differ on religious views perhaps
[13:25] Jerome Ronzales: agreed
[13:25] herman Bergson: So religion and beliefs as brainfunctions
[13:25] Jerome Ronzales: thought that seem a bit more generalized on his thinking
[13:25] Gemma Cleanslate: hmmmm
[13:26] herman Bergson: This takes Fukuyama's thesis out of history and defines it as a biological, evolutionary result.
[13:26] Repose Lionheart: yes
[13:27] herman Bergson: I am reading on these issues these days ㋡
[13:27] herman Bergson: Really interesting...
[13:27] Gemma Cleanslate: http://fora.tv/2007/06/28/Francis_Fukuyama_End_Of_History_Revisited
[13:27] herman Bergson: Mankind went through 5 revolutions...
[13:28] Jerome Ronzales: this may sound silly, but if his studies reflect a demographical situation why would he recore biological arguments completely new?
[13:28] herman Bergson: the first was the discovery of its place in the universe about 1630 with Copernicus..
[13:28] Gemma Cleanslate: might want to book mark this
[13:28] Repose Lionheart: Thanks, Gemma...
[13:28] Bruce Mowbray thinks: Neurobiology is demonstrating what Buddhist psychology knew hundreds of years ago.
[13:28] Gemma Cleanslate: in his own words
[13:28] Gemma Cleanslate: that is interesting bruce
[13:29] Jerome Ronzales: that would lead to a completely different map! i guess..
[13:29] herman Bergson: Yes Bruce....by ordinairy experience...
[13:29] Jerome Ronzales: maybe not.. (wondering)
[13:29] Alaya Kumaki: maybe groups memories
[13:29] herman Bergson: The neurological developments just show what is there indeed
[13:30] herman Bergson: But mapping the brain leads to all kinds of things
[13:30] Bruce Mowbray thinks: pehnomenology.
[13:30] Bruce Mowbray: pehnomenology.
[13:30] Bruce Mowbray: ok heck.
[13:30] Repose Lionheart: lol
[13:30] herman Bergson: with phenomenology..the American or the German one?
[13:31] Bruce Mowbray: Don't know --- which one works better?
[13:31] Alaya Kumaki: Socrates is best known for the dictum that only the examined life is worth living.
[13:31] Bruce Mowbray: Only the examined neuron is worth thinking about!
[13:31] Alaya Kumaki: can you see a living neuron without opening the box, than he is dead
[13:31] herman Bergson: Well..to get back to Fukuyama....
[13:32] herman Bergson: In fact he says that a kind of liberalism is our end station.....
[13:32] Alaya Kumaki: 0ô
[13:32] herman Bergson: where marx said that total communism would be our end station
[13:32] Jerome Ronzales nods
[13:33] herman Bergson: A big difference...
[13:33] herman Bergson: Who holds the best cards... Fukuyama or Marx ㋡
[13:33] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:33] Jerome Ronzales: ㋡
[13:34] Jerome Ronzales: one would never tell...
[13:34] Repose Lionheart: Well, Marx wrote 150 years ago ㋡
[13:34] herman Bergson: If nobody..so in fact everybody actually owns the earth...?
[13:34] Jerome Ronzales: so the fighting could take its place!
[13:34] Repose Lionheart: You'd expect Fukuyama to seem to make more sense
[13:34] Repose Lionheart: for now
[13:35] herman Bergson: Well...when you look at the changes..the other graphic...
[13:35] Jerome Ronzales: a posteriori, yes!
[13:35] herman Bergson: That green line is a factual observation through history
[13:35] Repose Lionheart: It does seem that Fukuyama has adduced a lot of data to support his position, yes, Suir
[13:35] Repose Lionheart: Sir*
[13:36] Bruce Mowbray thinks: I suspect that Christians in the Middle Ages thought that feudalism was the "end station."
[13:36] herman Bergson: Oh yes...and one criticism is that he also left out a lot of data that didnt fit his thoery
[13:36] Repose Lionheart: I sill have an uncomfortable feeling that both Marx and Fukuyama write themselves large across history
[13:36] Repose Lionheart: still*
[13:36] herman Bergson: Well...there is one amazing fact...
[13:37] herman Bergson: in 1795 Immanual Kant wrote "Zum ewigen Friede"
[13:37] herman Bergson: Perpetual Peace...
[13:37] Repose Lionheart: ohhhhh
[13:37] herman Bergson: And he gives a few rules to get there...
[13:38] herman Bergson: One is that all states should be republics....with a system of representation of the people
[13:38] herman Bergson: He wasnt that far that he could imagine suffrage, a voting system like we know...
[13:39] herman Bergson: But his idea is the same as the idea that democracies prevent risky behavior...make starting a war more difficult
[13:39] Repose Lionheart: yes...very interesting
[13:40] herman Bergson: and in the democratic areas of this world war is very exceptional...
[13:40] herman Bergson: Germany and France will probably never go to war again against eachother
[13:41] herman Bergson: tho the conflict has deep historical roots
[13:41] herman Bergson: Tho history may not develop according laws, as Popper say...
[13:41] herman Bergson: mankind may yet develop acoording evolutionary lines
[13:42] Repose Lionheart: yes ㋡
[13:42] Repose Lionheart: a happy thought
[13:42] herman Bergson: So in spite of all negative thinking...
[13:42] herman Bergson: are there indications that there yet is a positive development....
[13:42] Jerome Ronzales: after the massive capitalism, its not a easy task!
[13:43] herman Bergson: No Jerome....
[13:43] Jerome Ronzales: yes, i thought so
[13:43] herman Bergson: Environmentalists even say....very nice this liberalism...but it destroys the earth by depleting its resources..
[13:43] Jerome Ronzales: i have massive headache...
[13:43] Jerome Ronzales: also..
[13:44] herman Bergson: Doesnt sound good Jerome...
[13:44] Jerome Ronzales: it isnt
[13:44] herman Bergson: I hope I wasnt too demanding on your brain
[13:44] Bruce Mowbray: Nothing is permanent: no "end station."
[13:44] Repose Lionheart: seems true to me
[13:44] Jerome Ronzales: fair enought
[13:44] herman Bergson: No Bruce...I agree...
[13:45] herman Bergson: because what argument is there to say...we have reahed it now almost
[13:45] herman Bergson: reached
[13:45] Bruce Mowbray: When Qwark's Hadron Collider blows up France. . . .
[13:45] Repose Lionheart: lol!
[13:45] Bruce Mowbray: no one will go to war with France, ever again.
[13:45] Abraxas Nagy: ╔╗╔═╦╗
[13:45] Abraxas Nagy: ║╚╣║║╚╗
[13:45] Abraxas Nagy: ╚═╩═╩═╝
[13:46] herman Bergson: And you are sound and save in Ohio..Bruce ^_^
[13:46] Bruce Mowbray: hardly!!!
[13:46] Bruce Mowbray: We have TORNADOES!!
[13:46] Abraxas Nagy: wow yes
[13:46] Repose Lionheart: and floods
[13:46] Bruce Mowbray: big floods.
[13:46] Jerome Ronzales: now?
[13:46] Bruce Mowbray: and lots and lots of Republicans.
[13:46] Repose Lionheart: LOL!!!!
[13:46] Abraxas Nagy: AH HAHAHAHA
[13:46] herman Bergson smiles
[13:46] Gemma Cleanslate: LOL
[13:47] Abraxas Nagy: cant you flush them from the system?
[13:47] Bruce Mowbray: worse than tornadoes and floods.
[13:47] herman Bergson: Ok....thanks for the weathervforecast Bruce ㋡
[13:47] Repose Lionheart: you are beset, bruce!
[13:47] Bruce Mowbray: indeed.
[13:47] Gemma Cleanslate: ▓▒░ ♪♫♩ ॐ ॐ ॐ ((-: QWARK :-)) ॐ ॐ ॐ ♪♫♩ ▓▒░
[13:47] Gemma Cleanslate: that is bejiitas collider not lol
[13:47] Abraxas Nagy: yep
[13:47] herman Bergson: Ok...
[13:47] Repose Lionheart: true
[13:47] herman Bergson: gemma gave us an interestin glike I guess...
[13:47] Repose Lionheart: yes!
[13:47] herman Bergson: Studying that may be your home work for this weekend
[13:48] Abraxas Nagy: ah good
[13:48] Gemma Cleanslate: yes it ihas many appeareneces
[13:48] Gemma Cleanslate: lo ok
[13:48] herman Bergson: May I thank you all for your participation again...
[13:48] Repose Lionheart: kk ㋡
[13:48] Gemma Cleanslate: will be nice to hear the person
[13:48] Gemma Cleanslate: ♥ Thank Youuuuuuuuuu!! ♥
[13:48] Gemma Cleanslate: for class
[13:48] Abraxas Nagy: thank YOU again herman
[13:48] Repose Lionheart: Thank you, Professor
[13:48] herman Bergson: Class Dismissed ㋡

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

262 : Karl Popper

Karl Popper is generally regarded as one of the greatest philosophers of science of the 20th century. He was also a social and political philosopher of considerable stature, a self-professed ‘critical-rationalist’,

a dedicated opponent of all forms of skepticism, conventionalism, and relativism in science and in human affairs generally, a committed advocate and staunch defender of the ‘Open Society’, and an implacable critic of totalitarianism in all of its forms.

This is how the article on Karl Popper begins in the Stanford Encyclopedia. Reason enough for us to have a closer look at his social and political thoughts.

In his constant attack on totalitarianism there are especially two key concept in the spotlights: holism and historicism. Both closely related to the social sciences.

Holism is to be understood as the view that human social groupings are greater than the sum of their members, that such groupings are ‘organic’ entities in their own right,

that they act on their human members and shape their destinies, and that they are subject to their own independent laws of development. In other words, the classic idea, that the sum is more than all individual parts together.

Historicism, which is closely associated with holism, is the belief that history develops inexorably and necessarily according to certain principles or rules towards a determinate end (as for example in the dialectic of Hegel, which was adopted and implemented by Marx).

There is a link between the holist and the historicist. The holist believes, that individuals are essentially formed by the social groupings to which they belong.

According to the historicist we only can understand these social groupings only in terms of the internal principles which determine its development.

The claim that 10 individuals in one room are more than 10 individuals, say…a group, some abstract entity with its own behavior is a misconception, according to Popper.

Such a theory doesn't even fulfill the basic requirement of offering a possibility to proof or better, falsify this fact. Thus the idea is not scientific, in fact just nonsense.

Consequently, the idea that groups develop through history according to for instance dialectic laws is nonsense too. One only tries to apply the methodology of the natural sciences to the social sciences, which is a misconception too.

Therefore Popper holds the view, that history does not evolve in accordance with intrinsic laws or principles,

that in the absence of such laws and principles unconditional prediction in the social sciences is an impossibility, and that there is no such thing as historical necessity.

In what Popper calls "the Open Society" every individual citizen must have the possibility to evaluate critically the consequences of the implementation of government policies, which can then be abandoned or modified in the light of such critical scrutiny.

In such a society, the rights of the individual to criticize administrative policies will be formally safeguarded and upheld, undesirable policies will be eliminated in a manner analogous to the elimination of falsified scientific theories.

Popper was not a utopian, but saw this as an already empirically realized form of social organization. What he wanted was to demonstrate that the historicist and holist presuppositions were fundamentally incoherent.

Popper saw his Open Society as an association of free individuals respecting each other's rights within the framework of mutual protection supplied by the state, and achieving, through the making of responsible, rational decisions, a growing measure of humane and enlightened life. (Levinson, R.B.1957).

The Discussion

[13:24] herman Bergson: And hereby I declare Society for opened
[13:25] herman Bergson: Feel free to ask questions of add remarks
[13:26] Bruce Mowbray: no gestalt for the state - - The state cannot be greater than the sum of its citizens.
[13:26] Seeme Short: I havent read the open society, but it is famous for its attack on plato.. can you comment on that?
[13:26] Bruce Mowbray: telos.
[13:26] Repose Lionheart: Hard to square the rationality of the hoped for "Open Society" with hhot media, the 8 hour news cycle, and Glen Beck ㋡
[13:27] Bruce Mowbray: ;-)
[13:27] Repose Lionheart: I admire the hope, though
[13:27] herman Bergson: Well repose that is the point I was thinking of myself
[13:27] Repose Lionheart: ㋡
[13:27] Bruce Mowbray: Also very critical of Hegel.
[13:28] Loo Zeta: It is flawed as there is always the suppressed
[13:28] Seeme Short: well, that makes sense, given his criticism of historicism
[13:28] herman Bergson: But to answer Seeme...Plato was a totalitarian..thinking that only th ephilosopghers could rule the state
[13:28] Loo Zeta: no society is equal
[13:28] Repose Lionheart: I agree with his criticism of both holism and historicism
[13:29] herman Bergson: And even when we have the media...
[13:29] Allie Birmingham: Where does each members reason to care come from?
[13:29] herman Bergson: we alsio have other stations that offer falsifications of certain views
[13:29] Repose Lionheart: but finally his solution sounds like "science or nonsense," which is untenable
[13:29] herman Bergson: Well....basically he would say...
[13:30] herman Bergson: come up with any possible political view...
[13:30] herman Bergson: is ok...
[13:30] Gemma Cleanslate: hmmm
[13:30] herman Bergson: BUT include a way to test it
[13:30] herman Bergson: sothat it can be falsified
[13:31] herman Bergson: the holistic idea cant be fasified...
[13:31] Seeme Short: haha, does his own view meet this falsification requirement?
[13:31] herman Bergson: there IS no organic entity to test
[13:31] Repose Lionheart: yes, and Marxism, then, would be a self-referential system of explanation with too little empirical ground...untestable
[13:31] Bruce Mowbray thinks to himself: "History" is in the eye of the historian.
[13:32] herman Bergson: That is a good on Seeme....
13:32] Gemma Cleanslate: well that is a one history is factual isnt it?
[[13:33] herman Bergson: Can Popper's requirement of falsifiability be falsified?
[13:33] Bruce Mowbray: Does Popper's own thinking meet his requirements for falsification...
[13:33] Gemma Cleanslate: distrupting class
[13:33] Seeme Short: right
[13:33] Repose Lionheart: good question
[13:33] Repose Lionheart: probably not, i think
[13:33] herman Bergson: The question is....is this a correct approach..
[13:34] herman Bergson: In fact ..Popper's idea is based on logic...
[13:34] Seeme Short: I would argue that not all is to be approached scientifically
[13:34] Repose Lionheart: yes
[13:34] herman Bergson: and he showed that confirmation only increases probability
[13:34] Kiki Walpanheim: why would a problem need to be falsified to be a problem? there are so many issues that never fit in the category of science, yet important still
[13:35] herman Bergson: Here is is about government and its action...
[13:36] herman Bergson: they can be tested..as they are consequences of a theory
[13:36] Loo Zeta: /apologises as having network lag
[13:36] Seeme Short: I am not sure about falsification, but in the case of a soccer team, the team is obviously something more than the 11 individuals
[13:37] Bruce Mowbray thinks: a timely point!
[13:37] Repose Lionheart: soooo...confirmation (and falsification) are probabilistic?
[13:37] herman Bergson: No...
[13:37] Seeme Short: haha, yes, bruce
[13:37] herman Bergson: 11 individuals with 11 individual behaviors nothing more
[13:37] Bruce Mowbray: no team? no state? no community? no "philosophy class"?
[13:37] Kiki Walpanheim: in the famous game theory- prisonors dilemma, the consequence gets bad when everybody only takes care of himself rather than the whole team
[13:38] herman Bergson: that they have learnt to coordinate their behavior doesnt ad an entity to this world
[13:38] Seeme Short: well, the game isn't intelligible from the individuals behaviors
[13:38] herman Bergson: it is...you can blame an individual for his behavior in the group
[13:38] Bruce Mowbray: excellent point, Seeme.
[13:38] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:39] herman Bergson: and words like team etc..are emotional add ons
[13:39] Loo Zeta: ahh group dynamics
[13:39] Kiki Walpanheim: but holism seems to provide justification for totalitarianism, which isn't that attractive...tho the theory itself makes sense in some way
[13:39] Bruce Mowbray: Try to schedule the World Cup by naming individual players.
[13:39] Loo Zeta: who are the controllers?
[13:39] herman Bergson: No..holism doesn make sense at all...
[13:40] Kiki Walpanheim: :/
[13:40] herman Bergson: sounds goeod perhaps but makes no sense
[13:40] Loo Zeta: who is perceived to be in authority
[13:40] Repose Lionheart: group behavior arises from the evolved social nature of individuals and social conditioning
[13:40] Bruce Mowbray: Yo, Rodney.
[13:40] Seeme Short: I still think groups impose rules on us, of course I agree with Popper this fact does not deprive us of the right to question the rules
[13:40] Rodney Handrick: Hi Bruce
[13:40] Repose Lionheart: groups are not existent things in their own right
[13:40] Repose Lionheart: except in a general social sense
[13:40] Seeme Short: of course, a statue does not exist without clay either
[13:41] herman Bergson: There is only group behavoir in the sense that a number of individual behave alike
[13:41] Repose Lionheart: reify the group gives you totalitarianism
[13:41] Abraxas Nagy: its an abstraction
[13:41] Repose Lionheart: reifying*
[13:41] herman Bergson: Very well understood Seeme..
[13:41] Bruce Mowbray: Does the concept of "citizenship" mean anything at all?
[13:42] Loo Zeta: in theory
[13:42] herman Bergson: A number of individuals thinking alike put perssure on you to think the same way....nothing more...
[13:42] Abraxas Nagy: for some maybe
[13:42] Loo Zeta: taught in UK schools
[13:42] Allie Birmingham: Loo don't drag the teacher into this :)
[13:42] Loo Zeta: taking a 'stake'
[13:43] herman Bergson: I missed Loo's point
[13:43] Loo Zeta: but the reduction of stake = no citizenship
[13:44] herman Bergson: Citizenship is nothing more than that the individual feels rsponsible for the wellbeing of his fellowman too
[13:44] Bruce Mowbray: sounds a bit like Any Rand.
[13:44] Bruce Mowbray: Ayn.
[13:44] herman Bergson: oh no....
[13:44] Gemma Cleanslate: oh my
[13:45] Abraxas Nagy: AH HAHAHAHA
[13:45] herman Bergson: Rand doesnt care for the wellbeing of the other for a dime
[13:45] Abraxas Nagy: please
[13:45] Abraxas Nagy: exactly
[13:45] herman Bergson: She cares for you own wellbeing primarily
[13:45] Bruce Mowbray: So. .. Popper is not an anarchist. . . Just feels that the "state" is an entity that cannot be "falsified" and therefore is not a valid entity.
[13:46] herman Bergson: No...
[13:46] herman Bergson: Popper regards the state as a group of rational individuals who use his method of falsification to find out what is best for all
[13:47] Rodney Handrick: Is that a tablet on the podium Herman?
[13:47] Rodney Handrick: I sorry..
[13:47] Rodney Handrick: I'm Sorry! had to ask...
[13:47] Kiki Walpanheim: hmm....is political science , science?
[13:47] Repose Lionheart: nope
[13:48] Kiki Walpanheim: i feel science is tractable, you can always know for sure what is right
[13:48] Kiki Walpanheim: but when it comes to political science, the dispute is constant...
[13:48] herman Bergson: So..Popper thinks..in the end..if we really want an open society ..it should be ruled by scientific rationality
[13:48] Abraxas Nagy: science'ish
[13:48] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:49] Repose Lionheart: oh, like that ㋡
[13:49] Abraxas Nagy: ╔╗╔═╦╗
[13:49] Abraxas Nagy: ║╚╣║║╚╗
[13:49] Abraxas Nagy: ╚═╩═╩═╝
[13:49] herman Bergson: Well..I guess his main point is....
[13:49] Bejiita Imako: that sound good caus science means finding out how things actually work and should be
[13:49] Bejiita Imako: no matter what it is
[13:49] herman Bergson: If you have a political claim..give me to proof the truth of fasity of it..otherwise it is nonsense
[13:50] Seeme Short: I still cannot see how that would work in practice
[13:50] herman Bergson: and as you know from reality...people love to follow nonsense..
[13:50] Bruce Mowbray: "God has blessed America with abundant resources" is nonsense..., then.
[13:50] Abraxas Nagy: thats a fact herman
[13:50] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:50] herman Bergson: Of course Bruce...
[13:50] Kiki Walpanheim: i just feel the absolute is much more obscure when it comes to political science, compared to the natural science
[13:50] Rodney Handrick: hmm...
[13:50] Sartre Placebo: btw. is what chomsky thinks in books like ,,manufacturing consent" philosophy ?
[13:50] Bruce Mowbray: even the idea of "blessed" is nonsense.
[13:50] Seeme Short: as long as we aren't able to falsify a view, would it follow that it is a justifiied view?
[13:51] herman Bergson: no seeme....
[13:51] Kiki Walpanheim: what about the claim "all men are created equal"
[13:51] Kiki Walpanheim: can it be falsfied
[13:51] Repose Lionheart: keep thinking of Godel here....
[13:51] Bruce Mowbray: nonsense.
[13:51] herman Bergson: it is not justified....just probably true...so we still can be mistaken
[13:51] Seeme Short: right, the principle of equality
[13:52] herman Bergson: But if we have no alternative...we might go for it and learn
[13:52] Repose Lionheart: there are always unfalsifiable (mythic) underpinnings to any rationally held opinion or set of opinions
[13:53] herman Bergson: yes repose...at the end we end up with axioms
[13:53] Repose Lionheart: these are very big questions here
[13:53] Repose Lionheart: yes, Sir
[13:53] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:53] Abraxas Nagy: :D
[13:53] Bejiita Imako: :)
[13:53] Bruce Mowbray: Axioms.... as in Platonic "ideals"?
[13:53] herman Bergson: And that makes life so fascinating ㋡
[13:53] Abraxas Nagy: yep
[13:53] Seeme Short: falsification applies to empirical methods, political views (ideally) are subject to rational scrutiny
[13:53] herman Bergson: No Bruce..never
[13:53] Seeme Short: not really the same
[13:53] Repose Lionheart: yes!
[13:53] Repose Lionheart: heheheh
[13:53] Kiki Walpanheim: i think instead to seek for an absolute "scientific" answer for the truth, we could
[13:54] Seeme Short: haha, reposes point too, I see
[13:54] herman Bergson: Axioms in the sense that we formulate statements of facts which we can not proof or falsify
[13:54] Bruce Mowbray: Axions "determine" outcomes in math. "Ideals" determine outcomes in . . . history (?)
[13:54] Bruce Mowbray: OK. I see.
[13:54] herman Bergson: I dont agree with you bruce...
[13:55] herman Bergson: Teleological thinking
[13:55] Kiki Walpanheim: maybe just to admit that some theories are not science, so debate is allowed, this indulgence itself is the spirit of science...
[13:55] Seeme Short: ideals don' determine, to start with
[13:55] Bruce Mowbray: yep.
[13:55] Bruce Mowbray: more Aristotle than Plato, there.
[13:55] herman Bergson: Yes Kiki
[13:55] Bruce Mowbray: "final cause"
[13:55] Kiki Walpanheim: because, there are so many theories in philosophy, more specifically, political science that can not be falsified
[13:55] Kiki Walpanheim: which are not that scientific
[13:56] Seeme Short: as such, it is rather a matter of rationality
[13:56] Seeme Short: did popper comment on Rawls, herman?
[13:56] herman Bergson: Yes...rationality....
[13:56] herman Bergson: the most peculiar phenomenon in human behavior.. ㋡
[13:56] herman Bergson: Good for a next project..
[13:56] Seeme Short: hehe
[13:57] Kiki Walpanheim: the problem with holism and historicism is that, the totalitariamnism state they provide justification for, hindered the channel ppl could discuss and debate about ideas
[13:57] Daruma Boa: so yes, i must leave now.
[13:57] Kiki Walpanheim: tho i see holism and historicism make sense in some way
[13:57] Daruma Boa: see u thursday.
[13:57] Kiki Walpanheim: only the ideology they provide justification for is problematic
[13:57] Gemma Cleanslate: see you thursday i hope
[13:57] Bejiita Imako: cu Daruma
[13:57] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:57] Bruce Mowbray: bye, Daruma.
[13:57] Gemma Cleanslate: ♥ Thank Youuuuuuuuuu!! ♥
[13:57] Seeme Short: thanks, herman
[13:58] herman Bergson: I think the holism of this class is disolving....lol
[13:58] Kiki Walpanheim: thank you professor
[13:58] Bruce Mowbray: hehehe
[13:58] Sartre Placebo: thx herman
[13:58] Kiki Walpanheim: LOL
[13:58] Bejiita Imako: :)
[13:58] herman Bergson: so time to thank you all for your participation...
[13:58] Bejiita Imako: hmm this was interesting for sure
[13:58] herman Bergson: Class dissolved
[13:58] Kiki Walpanheim: thanks all
[13:58] Bruce Mowbray: Are you implying that there WAS holism to begin with?
[13:58] Bejiita Imako: :)
[13:58] Qwark Allen: ˜*•. ˜”*°•.˜”*°• Bye ! •°*”˜.•°*”˜ .•*˜ ㋡
[13:58] Qwark Allen: ¸¸.☆´ ¯¨☆.¸¸`☆** **☆´ ¸¸.☆¨¯`☆ H E R MA N ☆´ ¯¨☆.¸¸`☆** **☆´ ¸¸.☆¨¯`
[13:58] Bejiita Imako: haha
[13:58] Sartre Placebo: what will be the next topic ?
[13:58] Seeme Short: it is historically determined that classes cannot maintain holism for long
[13:58] Repose Lionheart: Thank you, Professor ㋡
[13:58] Qwark Allen: thank you
[13:58] Bruce Mowbray: rationalism.
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: oki whats up next
[13:59] Loo Zeta: ty
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: somthing fun
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: Hooo!!!
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: Hoooo!
[13:59] Qwark Allen: partyy at space station now
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: great!
[13:59] Qwark Allen: i`ll send tp
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: a
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: ys
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: :)
[14:00] Seeme Short: bye all, ciao herman
[14:00] herman Bergson: Bye Seeme
[14:00] Bejiita Imako: cu
[14:00] herman Bergson: See you ㋡
[14:00] Loo Zeta: bye take care
[14:00] bergfrau Apfelbaum: danke herman! byebye class :-)
[14:00] Kiki Walpanheim: see you ppl
[14:00] herman Bergson: Bye Bergie
[14:00] Sartre Placebo: night kiki
[14:01] Sartre Placebo: bye everyone
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Monday, June 14, 2010

261 : Feminist Political Philosophy

As usual all political philosophers we are discussing here are men just like we discovered in our project on 100 philosophers, that there were only two women philosophers.

We have put things in balance by doing a project on Women Philosophers and today again we bring back some balance by paying attention to Feminist Political philosophy.

Feminist political philosophy is an area of philosophy focused on understanding and critiquing the way political philosophy is usually construed,

often without any attention to feminist concerns, and to articulating how political theory might be reconstructed in a way that advances feminist concerns.

feminist political philosophy focuses most directly on understanding ways in which collective life can be improved. This project involves understanding the ways in which power emerges and is used or misused in public life.

In fact women had a great impact on the political organization of society in the period 1840 -1920 which focused on improving the political, educational, and economic system primarily for middle-class women.

A second wave of feminist activity emerges in the 1960s: a new feminist consciousness that emerged through women's solidarity movements and new forms of reflection that uncovered sexist attitudes and impediments throughout the whole of society.

Till the 1980s feminist political philosophy mirrored the traditional structures by splitting up in liberal feminism, socialist feminism, Marxist and radical feminism.

Since the collapse of the communist regimes are these old categories much less relevant. Along with political philosophy more broadly, more feminist political philosophers began to turn to the meaning and interpretation of civil society, the public sphere, and democracy itself.

Liberal feminism still is strong. It discusses the distinction of the private and public sphere. An example: It has criminalized violence against women, which previously, in marital relations, hadn't been considered a crime.

They showed how the private/public split served to uphold male domination of women by rendering power relations within the household as “natural” and immune from political regulation.

“Women and men are divided by gender, made into the sexes as we know them, by the requirements of its dominant form, heterosexuality,

which institutionalizes male sexual dominance and female sexual submission. If this is true, sexuality is the linchpin of gender inequality” (MacKinnon 1989) Words from a radical feminist.

As Amy Allen puts it, “Unlike liberal feminists, who view power as a positive social resource that ought to be fairly distributed,

and feminist phenomenologists, who understand domination in terms of a tension between transcendence and immanence,

radical feminists tend to understand power in terms of dyadic relations of dominance/subordination, often understood on analogy with the relationship between master and slave.”

There are several more developments in feminist political philosophy like maternal feminism, agonisitc feminism and performative feminism.

"In sum, feminist political philosophy is a still evolving field of thought that has much to offer mainstream political philosophy.

In the past two decades it has come to exert a stronger influence over mainstream political theorizing, raising objections that mainstream philosophers have had to address, though not always very convincingly.

And in its newest developments it promises to go even further." says Noëlle McAfee at the end of her article in the http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/feminism-political/. You should read it. And also http://www.apaonline.org/publications/newsletters/v99n2_Feminism_07.aspx

The Discusion

[13:19] herman Bergson: So that is your homework ㋡
[13:20] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:20] You decline New Releases & MM Board item from A group member named Spinnetje Jewell.
[13:20] Abraxas Nagy: ah
[13:20] ZANICIA Chau: oooh!
[13:20] herman Bergson: It is very revealing.... an eye opener
[13:20] Bejiita Imako: oki
[13:20] herman Bergson: just like our women philosophers were
[13:21] herman Bergson: if you have any questions or remark...feel free
[13:21] Bruce Mowbray: Feminism has had a profound effect on theology - as well as political thought.
[13:21] Gemma Cleanslate: could not connect to the second one
[13:22] ZANICIA Chau: Crumbs!....That's Brit for wow!
[13:22] herman Bergson: the link to that one is at the end of the Stanford article too
[13:22] Bruce Mowbray: The "tension between transcendent and immanent" is very powerful.
[13:22] Gemma Cleanslate: ok will check stanford
[13:22] Abraxas Nagy: yep me to
[13:23] herman Bergson: To be honest Bruce ...I have no idea what that means ㋡
[13:23] Bejiita Imako: aa yes have them up now
[13:23] Repose Lionheart: I'm very skeptical of culturally induced imbalances in power relationships...guess I'm a radical feminist at heart ㋡
[13:23] Bruce Mowbray: Transcendent "male" God vs. immanent experiential divinity.
[13:23] Lena Sigall: what caused men to have more power in society than women.... rather than the reverse?
[13:23] Gemma Cleanslate: that is good
[13:23] Gemma Cleanslate: size and strength
[13:24] herman Bergson: Well....that is one of the big contributions of feminism.....to uncover those power relations
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: and the belief that women were created to take care of them and the children
[13:24] herman Bergson: Oh that explains it quite well Bruce ..thanks
[13:24] herman Bergson: Yes..God is a man... ㋡
[13:24] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:25] herman Bergson: very odd actually
[13:25] Bruce Mowbray: The [nonsensical] idea that God ordained women to be subservient to men.
[13:25] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
[13:25] Repose Lionheart: embedded in myth too...differences in understanding males and females go back to prehistorical (preliterate) times and are deeply embedding in us
[13:25] Abraxas Nagy: I'd say... it presumes human likeness
[13:25] herman Bergson: Yes.....that is what men wrote ㋡
[13:25] Gemma Cleanslate: all the way back to that lost rib
[13:25] Lena Sigall: but why did those that originally formed current major religions have the desire to oppress women at all?
[13:25] Gemma Cleanslate: unclean
[13:26] Bejiita Imako: aa yes dont get it
[13:26] Bruce Mowbray: Worse in "fundamentalist" traditions.
[13:26] herman Bergson: One of the reasons historically may be that women were the production unit to keep society alive, and the armies manned
[13:26] Bejiita Imako: like islam , women are a thing u can own and they are forbidden to do much other things than stand at the stove
[13:26] Bejiita Imako: tragic
[13:26] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
[13:26] Bejiita Imako: even forbidden to drive cars in ex saudi arabia
[13:26] herman Bergson: From our point of view it is bizarre indeed
[13:26] Repose Lionheart: yes
[13:27] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
[13:27] Abraxas Nagy: mmm yes
[13:27] Gemma Cleanslate: from their women view is ok
[13:27] Bruce Mowbray: Happy to note that women did VERY well in the US elections on Tuesday.
[13:27] Bejiita Imako: and packed from head to toe so the actual human is totally invisible
[13:27] Gemma Cleanslate: yes lololol
[13:27] Gemma Cleanslate: well
[13:27] Lena Sigall: hasn't most of human life been under matriarchy, except for the past few thousand years?
[13:28] herman Bergson: I dont know Lena....
[13:28] Gemma Cleanslate: in the home and family i would agree
[13:28] Bruce Mowbray: I would say "respectful" of matriarchy rather than "under" it.
[13:28] Gemma Cleanslate: but outside the woman is not more
[13:28] herman Bergson: The fact is that our culture is now male dominated
[13:28] Gemma Cleanslate: not more then in the home
[13:29] Lena Sigall: but my point is, it couldn't be that men are naturally more dominant, if for a long time humans were matriarchal
[13:29] herman Bergson: and feminism uncovers this imbalance....basically on liberal grounds...
[13:29] herman Bergson: and with a claim of equality
[13:29] herman Bergson: and there we already have learnt
[13:30] Bruce Mowbray: Boys have to be taught to dominate -- and the current culture does a "good" job of teaching them.
[13:30] Makara Oh: What is the problem with having a culture that is male dominated? Would it be better the other way around?
[13:30] herman Bergson: No Maraka....
[13:30] Lena Sigall: oh man
[13:30] Lena Sigall: lol
[13:30] Bejiita Imako: equal is best
[13:30] Bruce Mowbray thinks, Balance is almost always better --the Aristotelian mean.
[13:30] herman Bergson: but it concerns here fundamental concepts of ethics...
[13:30] Makara Oh: Isn't i a bit like utopia?
[13:31] herman Bergson: like equality, freedom, the right to your own life
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:31] herman Bergson: I dont think it is utopia...
[13:31] herman Bergson: Look at violence within the marriage...
[13:32] Makara Oh: Was it Rousseau or de Tocqueville who claimed the position of the master is worse than the one f the slave?
[13:32] herman Bergson: Now we do something against it...due to feminist action
[13:32] Gemma Cleanslate: yes
much, it is much appreciated!
[13:32] Repose Lionheart: power imbalances are as limiting to those who are powerful as to those who are powerless...
[13:32] Lena Sigall: sexism is bad for men too... see how gay men are treated
[13:33] Bejiita Imako: hmm its wired first people get together cause of love and next moment they try killing each other
[13:33] Abraxas Nagy: right
[13:33] Bejiita Imako: strange
[13:33] Gemma Cleanslate: it is more ownership issues i think than love
[13:33] herman Bergson: Yes Bejiita...some people change their mind
[13:33] Gemma Cleanslate: it is mine and no one cant touch it
[13:34] Bejiita Imako: ah yes
[13:34] herman Bergson: I would say so too Gemma
[13:35] herman Bergson: and this equality issue is specific ally a feminist issue....
[13:35] Gemma Cleanslate: case here just two weeks ago man left court after being told to stay away from wife (third time!!!) went and shot her in her home
[13:35] Bruce Mowbray: In monotheistic religions, God ordains husbands to "own" their wives.
[13:35] CONNIE Eichel: oh :/
[13:35] Gemma Cleanslate: oh yes
[13:35] Bejiita Imako: heard about that yes
[13:35] herman Bergson: bu tin the position of the woman in our culture this inequality is very clear ....
[13:35] Bejiita Imako: crazy
[13:35] Repose Lionheart: yes, what is being striven for is very practical, not utopian at all
[13:35] Gemma Cleanslate: economically also
[13:36] Repose Lionheart: that women not be shot in their homes...
[13:36] Bruce Mowbray: Bringing equality to the labor force doubles its size.
[13:36] herman Bergson: Yes Bruce ㋡
[13:36] Repose Lionheart: and increases economice efficiency
[13:36] Bejiita Imako: a yes
[13:37] Bruce Mowbray nods.
[13:37] Lena Sigall: why are women still paid less for the same work?
[13:37] Gemma Cleanslate: very good question
[13:37] Repose Lionheart: same with recial integrations of workforces
[13:37] Repose Lionheart: racial*
[13:37] Bejiita Imako: and here we have a good example not only about women but people from other countries immigrating here to sweden,
[13:37] Bruce Mowbray thinks, THAT's GOT to change.
[13:37] Gemma Cleanslate: that is why feminists are still so active
[13:37] herman Bergson: I have no idea.... it is illogical..
[13:37] Bejiita Imako: engineers cant get better jobs than sweeping floors and so
[13:37] Lena Sigall: there's been like no progress in the US in 20 years or something :/
[13:37] Gemma Cleanslate: oh i think there has been
[13:37] Lena Sigall: why is progress so slow?
[13:38] Bejiita Imako: really strange
[13:38] Repose Lionheart: some of it is structural...some of it is bias
[13:38] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:38] herman Bergson: The slowness is a subjective onbservation.....
[13:38] Bruce Mowbray thinks: Human nature doesn't like to rock the boat.
[13:39] herman Bergson: Some processes took a hundred years to achieve a success...
[13:39] Repose Lionheart: too few places protect women's careers (seniority and such like) when they get pregnant, for instance
[13:39] Lena Sigall: that's too long
[13:39] Lena Sigall: all women should go on strike!
[13:39] Bejiita Imako: yes
[13:39] Gemma Cleanslate: lol
[13:39] herman Bergson: I have no idea whether it took too long or not....
[13:39] Bejiita Imako: read many stories like , CG to the baby- U ARE FIRED!
[13:39] Repose Lionheart: yes!
[13:39] Abraxas Nagy: ╔╗╔═╦╗
[13:39] Abraxas Nagy: ║╚╣║║╚╗
[13:39] Abraxas Nagy: ╚═╩═╩═╝
[13:39] Bejiita Imako: terrible
[13:40] Bruce Mowbray: Good point, Lena -- the Lysistrata (sp?)
[13:40] herman Bergson: Yes....the wifes of Sparta...
[13:40] Bruce Mowbray nods.
[13:40] Bruce Mowbray: No more sex for your guys!
[13:40] Gemma Cleanslate: ahhha
[13:40] herman Bergson: Fact is that social changes take a long time...
[13:40] Bruce Mowbray: you guys.
[13:40] Abraxas Nagy: huh?
[13:40] Repose Lionheart: yep, recall that
[13:40] Abraxas Nagy: no way
[13:41] Lena Sigall: and women pay the consequences in the meantime?
[13:41] Repose Lionheart: yes, Prof
[13:41] Lena Sigall: that's wrong
[13:41] herman Bergson: maybe the old generation must die first before the new ideas set roots
[13:41] Repose Lionheart: women who resist change are part of the problem, too
[13:41] herman Bergson: and such generation after generation
[13:41] Bruce Mowbray: I think men, in general, are VERY insecure -- and that's why they dominate.
[13:41] Repose Lionheart: it is a people problem
[13:41] Repose Lionheart: as they all are :(
[13:42] Lena Sigall: women treat each other badly
[13:42] herman Bergson: These are unwarranted generalizations.....
[13:42] Lena Sigall: like bullying in the workplace
[13:42] Repose Lionheart: how so, Prof?
[13:43] herman Bergson: Because some women treat other women badly....
[13:43] Gemma Cleanslate: it begins in the home , and then the school
[13:43] herman e nuances
[13:44] Bruce Mowbray: Yet, some facts - like wage disparity - can be demonstrated to be true.
[13:44] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:44] herman Bergson: Even saying 'it is vert common" brings up a lot of questions...
[13:45] herman Bergson: Where is it common….social stratification...... in family or nor...etc
[13:45] Repose Lionheart: i would say, common in my experience, i think
[13:46] herman Bergson: it is the objective of philosophical discourse to reveal all such questions...not to use generalizations...
[13:46] Repose Lionheart: that would limit the context of the claim
[13:46] herman Bergson: That would be correct Repose....
[13:46] Bruce Mowbray: It is very common in America for women not to become Presidents and Governors.
[13:46] herman Bergson: then we can question your experience
[13:46] Gemma Cleanslate: we reveal many questions in the class always have
[13:47] Repose Lionheart: understood those limitations as implicit in what Lena said, me
[13:47] herman Bergson: Every generalization is subject to philosophical analysis
[13:47] Repose Lionheart: True, Prof ㋡
[13:47] herman Bergson: I am not addressing Lena personally here...
[13:47] Bruce Mowbray: Theological seminaries (Protestant) now have more female students than male.
[13:47] Repose Lionheart: ok ㋡
[13:47] herman Bergson: Just pointing at philosophical method
[13:47] Repose Lionheart: :))
[13:48] Repose Lionheart: Do they, Bruce?
[13:48] Repose Lionheart: Interesting
[13:48] Bruce Mowbray: yes!
[13:48] Repose Lionheart: That will make for changes 25 years down the road :)))
[13:48] Repose Lionheart: hehe
[13:49] Bruce Mowbray: I think it reflects a basic change in our mythos.
[13:49] Repose Lionheart: yes, i agree ㋡
[13:49] Repose Lionheart: think, the Alien movies :))
[13:49] Repose Lionheart: hehe
[13:49] Repose Lionheart: silly example
[13:49] herman Bergson: Well.... there may be a relation with feminist ethics here....
[13:49] herman Bergson: Care ethics...
[13:49] Repose Lionheart: oh!
[13:49] Repose Lionheart: Care ethics
[13:49] Bruce Mowbray: This of AVATAR.
[13:49] Repose Lionheart: like the sound of that
[13:49] Bruce Mowbray: Think.
[13:50] Repose Lionheart: ㋡ Bruce
[13:50] herman Bergson: The feminist philosophers have more understanding if interrelational care and its meaning than male philosophers had in the past...
[13:50] Bruce Mowbray: The natural ethics of caring and unity of all things.
[13:50] Gemma Cleanslate: that is natural
[13:50] Repose Lionheart: oh, interesting
[13:50] Bejiita Imako: yes
[13:50] herman Bergson: Yes... and religion a about care too
[13:50] Repose Lionheart: oh
[13:51] Repose Lionheart: yes it should be
[13:51] herman Bergson: Yes repose....
[13:51] herman Bergson: You could compare it with vertical and horizontal thinking....
[13:51] Bruce Mowbray thinks: I hope no one brings up the priests molesting children. . ..
[13:51] herman Bergson: Like the Roman catholic church with all its conservatism is returning to vertical thinking...
[13:52] Bruce Mowbray thinks, Oh god -- here it comes.
[13:52] herman Bergson: where the horizontal thinking ..the care disappears behind its horizon
[13:52] ZANICIA Chau: hmmm....one way to put it!
[13:52] Bruce Mowbray: and the parisheners disappear from the churches.
[13:53] ZANICIA Chau: lol
[13:53] herman Bergson: Exactly Bruce....
[13:53] Repose Lionheart thinks Bruce is prescient
[13:53] Bruce Mowbray: fair is fair.
[13:53] Repose Lionheart: ㋡
[13:53] Repose Lionheart: Yes, Prof
[13:54] herman Bergson: We are a little off target now....
[13:54] Bruce Mowbray: All claims to sexist domination have mythical sub-texts.
[13:54] Gemma Cleanslate: ok have to get going now
[13:54] herman Bergson: In general you can say that feminist political philosophy is a valueable contribution to philosophical discourse...
[13:54] Gemma Cleanslate: see you Tuesday I hope
[13:54] Gemma Cleanslate: :-)
[13:54] Abraxas Nagy: c ya Gemma
[13:55] Bejiita Imako: cu gemma
[13:55] Repose Lionheart: true, myth lies at the base of all human activity...even in our times
[13:55] Gemma Cleanslate: soon i hope ab
[13:55] Zinzi Serevi: bye bye Gemma
[13:55] Bruce Mowbray: a very valuable contribution to philosophical discourse.
[13:55] ZANICIA Chau: bye
[13:55] Abraxas Nagy: yep
[13:55] herman Bergson: Well Gemma ..it is almost time....so no problem...
[13:55] Repose Lionheart: bye, Gemma ㋡
[13:55] herman Bergson: Ok..may I thank you all for your attention and participation again...
[13:55] Bruce Mowbray: [`·.] APPLAUSE!! [.·´]
[13:55] Abraxas Nagy: thank YOU again herman
[13:55] Bejiita Imako: interesting as usual :)
[13:55] herman Bergson: Class dismissed ㋡
[13:55] Lena Sigall: thanks herman
[13:56] Zinzi Serevi: thank you proff
[13:56] Repose Lionheart: Oh, thank you, Professor!
[13:56] ZANICIA Chau: thanks professor...wonderful again
[13:56] Abraxas Nagy: as always food for thought
[13:56] Bejiita Imako: ok gtg to a birthday party now
[13:56] Lena Sigall: see you all next time
[13:56] Bejiita Imako: but cu soon
[13:56] CONNIE Eichel: great class :)
[13:56] Bejiita Imako: :)
[13:56] CONNIE Eichel: hope i can join next one
[13:56] ZANICIA Chau: goodbye all
[13:56] Loo Zeta is sorry I came late, son was hogging computer
[13:56] herman Bergson: Read the articles....Begin with stanford and you'll be completely informed on this subject
[13:56] ZANICIA Chau: ty
[13:56] Repose Lionheart: Yes, Prof ㋡
[13:56] Abraxas Nagy: see you all nextime friends
[13:57] Zinzi Serevi: bye Abrax
[[13:57] Zinzi Serevi: bye everyone..:)
[13:57] herman Bergson: By Abraxas
[13:57] CONNIE Eichel: bye z
[13:57] Repose Lionheart poofs

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260 : on Equality

Libertarianism and economic liberalism represent minimalist positions in relation to distributive justice. Citing Locke, they both postulate an original right to freedom and property, thus arguing against redistribution and social rights and for the free market.

We should have the freedom to accumulate property as much as we want. And therefore there is an opposition between equality and freedom. The individual (natural) right to freedom can be limited only for the sake of foreign and domestic peace.

For this reason, libertarians consider maintaining public order the state's only legitimate duty. Correspondingly, they defend market freedoms and oppose the use of redistributive taxation schemes for the sake of social justice as equality.

This approach regards inequality as justified and normal. It is based on the natural right of freedom. Before the eighteenth century it was even assumed that human beings are unequal by nature — i.e., that there was a natural human hierarchy.

This postulate collapsed with the advent of the idea of natural right and its assumption of an equality of natural order among all human beings. For instance as the utilitarians formulated it: the greatest happiness for the greatest number.

But here begins the philosophical struggle. At least since the French Revolution, equality has served as one of the leading ideals of the body politic; in this respect, it is at present probably the most controversial of the great social ideals.

It is easy to say "All men should be equal!", but this is a very simplistic statement. To begin with, it doesn't mean "the same", for then all men should be identical. Neither does it mean "similar", for that is a concept of merely approximate correspondence.

‘Equality’ (or ‘equal’) signifies correspondence between a group of different objects, persons, processes or circumstances that have the same qualities in at least one respect, but not all respects.

Equality becomes a moral and political issue when used in a prescriptive way, when a norm or rule is applied. e.g. people ought to be equal before the law. And this gives us already a clue. Equality means still being different, but equal in at least one respect.

And here begins fundamental philosophical discourse, for now we have to ask the questions: In what respect(s) should men be equal and why in those respects? How do you measure equality?

For this reason, it helps to think of the idea of equality understood as an issue of social justice, not as a single principle, but as a complex group of principles forming the basic core of today's egalitarianism.

An egalitarian is someone who maintains that people ought to be treated as equals--as possessing equal fundamental worth and dignity and as equally morally considerable.

A sample nonegalitarian would be one who believes that people born into a higher social caste, or a favored race or ethnicity, or with an above-average stock of traits are just better of by nature. No moral reason to do anything about the differences.

However, this fundamental idea of equal respect for all persons and of the equal worth or equal dignity of all human beings is accepted as a minimal standard by all leading schools of modern Western political and moral culture. Any political theory abandoning this notion of equality will not be found plausible today.

And then the political philosophical debate starts on equality in what respect.
We can make list:
1, Equality of Opportunity: the opportunity to have access to certain things like education or all possible jobs

2. Equality of condition… If you study hard you will be supported, but we don't support losers, thus you loose your right to be treated as equal.

3. In modern societies with market economies, an egalitarian is generally thought to be one who supports equality of income and wealth (income being a flow, wealth a stock).

4. Equality in the opportunity for Welfare. All these points are very complex chapters of philosophical discourse.

And I can add, that many egalitarians regard the moral significance of choice and responsibility as one of the most important other values besides equality.

They hold that it is bad - unjust or unfair - for some to be worse off than others through no fault or choice of their own and therefore they strive to eliminate involuntary disadvantages for which the sufferer cannot be held responsible.

The principle of responsibility provides a central normative vantage point for deciding on what grounds one might justify which inequality. And I think that this is a good conclusion and a good starting point.

The Discussion

[13:22] herman Bergson: So much on Equality....
[13:23] Daruma Boa: *•.¸('*•.¸ ♥ ¸.•*´)¸
[13:23] Daruma Boa: .•*♥¨`•APPLAUSE!!!°•´¨` ♥.
[13:23] Daruma Boa: ¸.•*(¸.•*´ ♥ `*•.¸)`*•.¸
[13:23] Daruma Boa: Hey!
[13:23] herman Bergson: I hope you are not dazzling
[13:23] ZANICIA Chau: lol
[13:23] Bejiita Imako: :)
[13:23] herman Bergson: If you have any questions or remarks..feel free...
[13:23] Lena Sigall: what do we do about the problem of unconscious biases?
[13:24] herman Bergson: everybody will get an equal chance....:)
[13:24] Kiki Walpanheim: all animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others....
[13:24] herman Bergson: What about that, Lena...
[13:24] Lena Sigall: is it possible for people in a society to be equal when it seems that everyone holds biases they don't even realize they have?
[13:25] herman Bergson: First of all...people in a society are never equal...
[13:25] herman Bergson: only eaqual in some respect...
[13:25] Kiki Walpanheim: nods at herman,
[13:26] herman Bergson: The y are equal in certain rights….wellbeing for instance.
[13:26] herman Bergson: or equal in opportunities....
[13:26] Kiki Walpanheim: Lock was legal equality advocate, Marx was the opposite...both said that ppl were born equal....
[13:27] herman Bergson: equal in access to resources
[13:27] AristotleVon Doobie: regardless of the moral rhetoric, no human is naturally endowed equally.....nurturing only makes inequality further pronounced.....I wonder how Darwinian theory applies to moden equality
[13:28] herman Bergson: In fact modern social politics bypass Darwinian theory
[13:28] Lena Sigall: how so?
[13:28] ZANICIA Chau: so it should
[13:28] Bruce Mowbray: Is "equality" something that Plato would term "a noble lie"?
[13:28] herman Bergson: A Darwinian approach would be probably even more minimalistic than a libertarian one
[13:28] AristotleVon Doobie: in so doing, it becomes legitimate to take from one to make another 'equal'
[13:29] herman Bergson: equality is not a noble lie, Bruce
[13:29] AristotleVon Doobie: a foolish endeavor that only weakens human endurance
[13:30] herman Bergson: and again...equality doesnt mean identity...
[13:30] Kiki Walpanheim: I think the pro-choice in abortion is under the assumption that you can NOT take something from someone(the mother) just to make the other benefit(the feteus)
[13:30] herman Bergson: No Aristotle....I dont agree...
[13:30] Bruce Mowbray: The idea that all citizens have equal access to resources. . . That's TRUE?
[13:30] herman Bergson: The mentally handicapped has an equal right on a pleasant life as I have
[13:31] AristotleVon Doobie: hmmmm, on a moral basis I agree
[13:31] Abraxas Nagy: how to define pleasant tho
[13:32] Lena Sigall: there really isn't an equality of opportunity in our society.. for example, having rich parents gives one much greater opportunity (money for college, connections with successful and powerful people), than a kid born to a secretary
[13:32] Kiki Walpanheim: and these essential questions define what kind of relation we have with our society, in so many aspects...
[13:32] AristotleVon Doobie: one should feel the compassion to provide for these underprivilaged folks
[13:32] Lena Sigall: and those priviledged social circles are mostly in favor of white people
[13:32] herman Bergson: Let's keep it in a Maslow sense Abraxas...Food and shelter, safety, care...
[13:33] Abraxas Nagy: ah ok
[13:33] herman Bergson: Yes Lena...and there is the task of the political debate....
[13:33] AristotleVon Doobie: no one should be coerced to help
[13:33] herman Bergson: how to deal with these inequalities..
[13:33] herman Bergson: First of all you have to identify them as inequalities...
[13:33] herman Bergson: Libertarians dont for instance
[13:34] herman Bergson: That is the core business of the political process I would say
[13:34] Lena Sigall: you could say the system is fundamentally flawed,.. but how do you change it when most people want to get more and more for themselves, and to help their friends, .. and don't care a lot about people born into an underpriviledged situation. they don't want the competition anyway
[13:34] Bruce Mowbray: Maslow's self-actualization is more possible for some than for others . . . Lena's point.
[13:34] herman Bergson: Just a matter of order...Lena....
[13:34] AristotleVon Doobie: one should agree to assist certain segments of society when it means you standard of living will be negatively affected if you do no
[13:34] Lena Sigall: matter of order?
[13:35] herman Bergson: Plz have a quick look at the sign behind me... ^_^
[13:35] Lena Sigall: ok
[13:35] Lena Sigall: sorry, it was too long
[13:35] herman Bergson: np...
[13:35] AristotleVon Doobie: the key to closing the gap for inequality is through education
[13:35] herman Bergson: Yes to begin with Aristotle....
[13:36] Abraxas Nagy: exactly
[13:36] AristotleVon Doobie: not give folks a fish, teach them how to fish
[13:36] herman Bergson: so equal chances on getting the right education....
[13:36] Abraxas Nagy: free education for everybody
[13:36] Abraxas Nagy: it pays itself back
[13:36] herman Bergson: Bu tthen you still have the group of people that are less gifted....
[13:36] herman Bergson: do they become our pariahs?
[13:36] Kiki Walpanheim: i dont think it is easy
[13:36] AristotleVon Doobie: education is a necessity for a healthy and prosperous society
[13:36] Kiki Walpanheim: unless free education is limited to some ppl only
[13:36] Abraxas Nagy: mmmm
[13:37] Abraxas Nagy: exactly Ari
[13:37] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:37] Lena Sigall: well, rich people can afford better education than people who rely on public schools
[13:37] herman Bergson: Yes Lena...so politics should do something about that
[13:37] Kiki Walpanheim: but anyway...the idea is ...right...because prosperity never was achieved by a simple redistribution of wealth...but
[13:37] Kiki Walpanheim: but instead
[13:38] Kiki Walpanheim: it was because of education, innovation,
[13:38] Kiki Walpanheim: etc
[13:38] herman Bergson: No Kiki
[13:38] herman Bergson: True
[13:38] AristotleVon Doobie: it has to start with parents, children must to talk to read and self eduvcate from the womb
[13:38] AristotleVon Doobie: must be taught*
[13:39] Lena Sigall: how to change the problem through politics when corporations largely control politicians?
[13:39] Kiki Walpanheim: and a good system to protect that too
[13:39] AristotleVon Doobie: tooo many folks depend on 'big brother' to educate their kids
[13:39] Abraxas Nagy: very true
[13:40] AristotleVon Doobie: ahh, the policital/industrial complex
[13:40] AristotleVon Doobie: corporations need the lower class for their labor
[13:40] herman Bergson: Well we are all part of the system...so we have to fight the system...that is th epolitical process...
[13:40] AristotleVon Doobie: they do not wish them to be educated or enlightened
[13:40] Abraxas Nagy: not for long anymore
[13:41] Lena Sigall: lots of people in America don't even understand how Congress works lol
[13:41] Abraxas Nagy: robotics will take care of that
[13:41] AristotleVon Doobie: youare right Lean, it is by design
[13:41] herman Bergson: That was the same as in 1850...the cooperations didnt the laborers to unite into syndicates....
[13:41] herman Bergson: Yet it happened...and they improved theuir position
[13:42] herman Bergson: Social changes go slow...but they happen....
[13:42] AristotleVon Doobie: take the list of Texas approved school books
[13:42] herman Bergson: Like women had no right to vote even...!
[13:42] herman Bergson: Nor to education..
[13:43] AristotleVon Doobie: that was before 'globalization' herman
[13:43] herman Bergson: Germany has a woman as chancellor
[13:43] AristotleVon Doobie: LOL, we have Sarah Palin
[13:43] herman Bergson: We even had to endure Magret Thatcher ^_^
[13:43] Daruma Boa: __--^--^--__
[13:43] Daruma Boa: ( @ @ )
[13:43] Daruma Boa: ______ oOOo-(_)-oOOo ___
[13:43] Daruma Boa: _____________Oooo._____
[13:43] Daruma Boa: .oooO ( ) _____
[13:43] Daruma Boa: ( ) ) /
[13:43] Daruma Boa: \ ( ( _ /
[13:43] Daruma Boa: \ _ ) !!! O M G !!!
[13:43] Abraxas Nagy: ╔╗╔═╦╗
[13:43] Abraxas Nagy: ║╚╣║║╚╗
[13:43] Abraxas Nagy: ╚═╩═╩═╝
[13:43] Abraxas Nagy: the iron lady
[13:43] Bejiita Imako: hha
[13:44] herman Bergson: So...changes took almost a hundred years...but things changed
[13:44] AristotleVon Doobie: class struggle is nothing new....it only continues in new disguise
[13:44] bergfrau Apfelbaum: :-(( i must off, but beautifully that emergency all acres alike men! see u thursday :-) ty herman! bye bye girls&boys
[13:44] herman Bergson: The position of the woman in Europe..her equal chances have increased
[13:44] Kiki Walpanheim: and there are different ways to accumulate wealth...either thru diligent work, or thru abusing political power....
[13:45] Daruma Boa: bye bergfrau
[13:45] AristotleVon Doobie: bye bergfrau
[13:45] Bejiita Imako: bye bergfrau
[13:45] Abraxas Nagy: c ya berg
[13:45] herman Bergson: The human being is no saint.....
[13:45] Lena Sigall: it's true we should do something about inequality,.. but so many people are unmotivated
[13:45] AristotleVon Doobie: ahhh, tht human nature thing again
[13:46] herman Bergson: yes Aristotle....it is human nature...
[13:46] Bruce Mowbray: Not even all saints are equal.
[13:46] Kiki Walpanheim: sometimes the inequality is by no means achieved thru free market...but thru the corrupted system...
[13:46] herman Bergson: lol...no Bruce some are sainter
[13:46] Daruma Boa: *GIGGLES* :)~~~~
[13:46] AristotleVon Doobie: even the most violent of revolutions have not altered it
[13:46] herman Bergson: Oh yes Kiki......tons of examples....
[13:47] Kiki Walpanheim: so the inquality itself is not the key
[13:47] Kiki Walpanheim: the reason why that occurred is the key...
[13:47] herman Bergson: Not human nature Aristotle...but social organization of a society they really have
[13:48] herman Bergson: At least speaking for Europe....people have more equally opportunities in participating in society
[13:48] herman Bergson: Not discriminated on race, religion or gender
[13:49] ZANICIA Chau: on the surface
[13:49] herman Bergson: You can tell a lot of bad stories about this world...
[13:49] AristotleVon Doobie: I agree, Europe is much further down the road, but hey have yet tobe reduced to third world status by global corporations
[13:49] herman Bergson: But things change nevertheless.....
[13:50] Bruce Mowbray: In a global culture... are folks from northern Europe at an advantage -- i.e., "more" equal than those from other nations?
[13:51] AristotleVon Doobie: we are all responsible either through commission or ommission for our present inequality
[13:51] herman Bergson: It is not a matter of more equal Bruce....
[13:51] Kiki Walpanheim: when things can not be perfect, maybe to acknowledge the existence of imperfection itself is just good
[13:51] Bruce Mowbray: I meant the term like Orwell's pigs: some pigs are more equal than others.
[13:51] herman Bergson: it is the about what a society has to offer to its citizens regarding their well being and opportunities , their freedom
[13:52] Kiki Walpanheim: well that is one of their commandments...some animals are more equal than others...
[13:52] Kiki Walpanheim: that is the amendment made as their system evolved long after being established
[13:52] Bruce Mowbray: yes, that's what I meant, Kiki.
[13:53] Bruce Mowbray: Because I live in a very RURAL area, I cannot get a FAST internet connection - and that make me "less equal" to most of you.
[13:53] herman Bergson: We are also a socio-biological system.....just like a colony of apes....with the same primitive drives....
[13:53] herman Bergson: Need for status in the group...selfishness...greed
[13:53] AristotleVon Doobie: :) amen
[13:53] herman Bergson: aggression..name it
[13:53] Zinzi Serevi: lol
[13:53] Bejiita Imako: :)
[13:54] Daruma Boa: thats true
[13:54] herman Bergson: The problem with a philosophical discussion on one specific subject is that we overloook the whole context we are in
[13:54] AristotleVon Doobie: but it is the gift of humanity, our cerebral cortex has to balance and control those ancinet urges
[13:54] herman Bergson: equality is just one meatball in the soup
[13:55] Kiki Walpanheim: and often they make the regard to equality as the morals, the social construction, the creed...
[13:56] herman Bergson: If you read the article in the Stanford encyclopedia on egalitarism....and on Equality....
[13:56] Kiki Walpanheim: oh....i will look up
[13:56] herman Bergson: It is almost enough to go crazy on it.....so many arguments....on evry detail...
[13:57] herman Bergson: Impossible to discuss here but amazing to read...
[13:57] Kiki Walpanheim: maybe acknowledging its disputes and put it to argument itself is good
[13:57] herman Bergson: That is the whole point of the philosophical approach Kiki
[13:57] AristotleVon Doobie: one could ponder continuously on how to make society more humane
[13:58] Kiki Walpanheim: that is why i love philosophy
[13:58] Bruce Mowbray agrees.
[13:58] Bejiita Imako: ah interesting for sure :)
[13:58] herman Bergson: Yes Aristotle...and that is what we do
[13:58] AristotleVon Doobie: :)
[13:58] herman Bergson: I hope that you all had an equal chance to participate in teh discussion ^_^
[13:59] herman Bergson: May I thank you for your participation...
[13:59] ZANICIA Chau: lol
[13:59] Abraxas Nagy: thank YOU professor
[13:59] Daruma Boa: *•.¸('*•.¸ ♥ ¸.•*´)¸
[13:59] Daruma Boa: .•*♥¨`•APPLAUSE!!!°•´¨` ♥.
[13:59] Daruma Boa: ¸.•*(¸.•*´ ♥ `*•.¸)`*•.¸
[13:59] Daruma Boa: Hey!
[13:59] herman Bergson: Class dismissed ^_^
[13:59] Zinzi Serevi: thanks prof
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: yest another interesting subject
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: :)
[13:59] AristotleVon Doobie: Thank you, Professor
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: yes
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: nice
[13:59] Jozen Ocello: sorry it's my first time here and i've been rather quiet... enjoyed the discussion lots though
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: nice
[13:59] Jozen Ocello: will come again :)
[13:59] Kiki Walpanheim: Thank you professor.....the topics are always the ones I seriously care about
[13:59] Daruma Boa: thxs a lot herman
[13:59] Kiki Walpanheim: and thank you all
[13:59] Lena Sigall: thanks herman
[13:59] Abraxas Nagy: oops
[13:59] Jozen Ocello: thank you professor
[13:59] Lena Sigall: bye everyone
[14:00] Bruce Mowbray: Welcome aboard, Jozen.
[14:00] herman Bergson: That is OK Jozen
[14:00] Sartre Placebo: thx, very much
[14:00] Jozen Ocello: thanks Bruce :)
[14:00] ZANICIA Chau: ty professor
[14:00] Daruma Boa: see you next week
[14:00] Bejiita Imako: aaa cu
[14:00] Bejiita Imako: :)
[14:00] AristotleVon Doobie: another wonderful lecture, Herman...much to think about
[14:00] AristotleVon Doobie: goodbye all
[14:00] Jozen Ocello: ty Professor for the interesting lecture
[14:00] Zinzi Serevi: bye bye all
[14:00] Abraxas Nagy: see you all nexttime friends :D
[14:00] Bruce Mowbray: G'night, all!