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RSS EnigmaticMan

Reward Points:1846
Efficiency: Efficiency is a measure of the effectiveness of your arguments. It is the number of up votes divided by the total number of votes you have (percentage of votes that are positive).

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10 most recent arguments.
EnigmaticMan(1846) Clarified
1 point

The response in question was conceived by one of our departed members, and was used against Enlightened1 whenever he emerged from his vile lair of pestilence and strife, to make some inane, insipid or indignant parody of an argument.

Videlicet, there is an historical context to the phrase which predates your membership.

You have some important and very insightful points

Thank you, sir.

but you've missed the meaning behind many of the ones you've responded to

If it please you to specify which points I missed, then I should be very much obliged to you, sir.

and that can make it appear that you are indeed coming from a position of "white indignation,"

What have white men to be indignant about?

I suggest you read the man's post again.

With a decent respect to your opinions, but in consideration of the efforts involved in the argument to which you refer, I must reject this suggestion as unhelpful.

listen if you want to know stuff about Hitler watch "Rise of Evil", of course this could be some form of "lets hate the dead guy" propaganda.

Because anything with a title like "Rise of Evil" must be a balanced historical narrative.

Nevertheless, people use them as a way to describe cultures as well.

What other people do in error is not relevant.

I also wasn't commenting on manners as an indicator of civilization.

I was. Your comments are a response to mine.

Whose anthropologists existed in a world where it was still scientifically credible to distinguish various ethnicities as 'white>color.'

This is an invalid argument. It does not address the matter at hand; it is akin to saying "they thought the earth was flat in such a year, and therefore all of their scholarship was fallacious."

I furthermore submit that it remains empirically credible to purport the general superiority of European races to African races; I shall write in more detail on this theme below, where a section has been reserved for the issue.

On the other hand, anthropologists of today have the best technology with which to analyze data, the funding to perform more intensive surveys and studies, and the approach that most closely matches the scientific method.

Technology cannot yet make inferences. It remains the business of the scholar to parse the information revealed to him by his machinery, and I submit that the capacity for human error and folly has not diminished.

I suggest that it would be more constructive to describe some argument whereby Rome's superiority may be denied or diminished.

What is a superior philosophy?

A philosophy which is more comprehensive, consistent and accurate might be described as a superior philosophy, but I purported the existence of no such thing. I said that China and Japan where superior in philosophy. Videlicet, that their philosophers were more fecund and influential than those of their neighbours. As an example, the overwhelming majority of the region's critical thought was a reaction to Confucianism, which was a Chinese innovation. This is indicative of a more cultured and educated society; by these grounds I might assert the superiority of Chinese civilization to, say, contemporary Mongolian or Korean civilization (the Koreans did not enjoy a unity of writing and of language until the 15th century, under Sejong).

I notice that you earlier purported the superiority of modern anthropology, due in part to its greater adoption of the scientific method. The scientific method is prescribed by philosophical doctrine (under the broad definition of Natural Philosophy) as a means of gaining knowledge. Now, if no philosophy can be superior to another, why do you consider the adoption of the scientific method to render modern anthropology superior to that of the past?

I happen to agree that scientific inquiry is a superior doctrine to, say, Platonic Idealism (though the dialectic is more complicated than that), but given your opinions of the impossibility of asserting superiority in nigh any field, I wonder that you can hold it in the esteem that you do.

How can one view on how to live life be any better than another?

That would depend upon what the philosophy in question declared to be the aim of a society, and to what degree it assisted in the achievement of that aim.

Economically speaking, even, you could make the argument that the economies of China and Japan may have been more forceful, but perhaps the neighboring countries had a more stable economy.

Economic stability implies stagnation. In fact, I venture to observe, that the most primitive economies are the stablest, by virtue of the complexity inherent in an advanced economy.

Or it better matched their religious/moral ideologies.

As philosophy ought to be rational, its relation to religious ideology is hardly grounds for its superiority or deficiency.

It's not that I'm displaying sympathy for the conquered. It is more that one needs to analyze both countries from both countries' perspective and place each one's story in its own cultural framework.

Do you have a particular objection?

An analogy may be made with respect towards IQ tests; If you were to give a sub-Saharan man the IQ test typically given a metropolitan American, he would undoubtedly get a lower score, if not judged to be mentally deficient. But that would not mean he was dumb; it would mean the IQ test had been prepared for, written by, and used facts relevant to very different demographics. I hope you can see what I'm trying to say.

You are saying that the perspective from which we assay the intellect of both men has been influenced by our belonging to a particular society, whose ideals and way of life are distinct from those of the sub-saharan, and that we are thus prevented from obtaining an accurate and useful comparison.

I submit that the aim of the IQ test (to quantify some forms of intelligence), and the utility of the IQ test (to demonstrate one's ability to perform mental arithmetic, apply knowledge, unscramble anagrams and identify prime numbers) have been confused. This if foolishness, but it is not analogous.

To compare a mason and a farmer, and see who wields the greater mastery over stone, does not establish the superiority of either trade. But to inquire of a nation, "how great a city have your masons wrought, and how bountiful a harvest do your farmers reap?"; this is the means whereby we may discern who is the master of the arts.

I suppose that is a fair point, although it's a pretty obvious one.

Why do you suppose, if it is obvious?

Of course there isn't a universal morality, but there are sets of social laws that are constantly shifting that are an effort to please the most amount of people.

If one man were to loath all other men, and in a fit of rage were to slay them, then his happiness would be increased, and it would be true to say "all of the men of the Earth are thus made jubilant". To act in the hope of pleasing the mob, is the surest path to destruction.

And generally, killing people goes against those social laws.

Nonsense. If men were so averse to slaughter, there should be less of it. You confuse our distaste at killing those whom we perceive as allies, for whom we have empathy, with a general goodwill. Your social laws mostly serve to prohibit striking the first blow. Exempli gratia, the people of the United kingdom, incensed by the bombing of their cities by German aircraft, were not averse to bombing German cities in turn.

And especially killing of innocents

Innocence is defined by this set of evolving principles, and is itself, therefore, subject to evolution. Prevailing opinion in Germany once allowed the NSDAP to gain control, and facilitated the destruction of the Jews. I should be much afeared, to have my innocence determined only by social laws.

one's ideology, ethnicity, sexuality, etc. cannot be a crime

All of these things have been crimes.

Well what is virtue or dishonor?

Virtue is whatever one's philosophy declares it to be (your terror of the obvious arbitrariness of all human values is amusing). Dishonour is, according to Vo Ritas al Vunras, at any rate, a state which arises from lack of virtue, or from the destruction of virtue.

And why should it matter if either are practiced or not?

Nihilism gets us nowhere. The answer to your question is obvious; especially so to one who objects to genocide.

And would it be virtuous to do something immoral yourself in order to destroy something immoral?

It is never virtuous to act dishonourably. If, to kill a villain, one becomes a villain, then must one not kill oneself?

These are all philosophical quandaries that are essentially unsolvable.

Nonsense. They are questions on which their is no consensus. This is a trait that they share with all other questions. To call any question unsolvable is intellectual cowardice.

Race based judgments are simply not fair

To judge an individual upon the general characteristics of his race is not the most accurate means of discerning his character (id est, not fair), if that is what you mean. But to judge a race, based upon its general characteristics, is precisely how races ought to be judged. By what other means is it to be judged, if not by this?

Videlicet, to say that the Chinese are generally more submissive than the French, is not analogous to saying that, if a man be Chinese, then he must be submissive.

It is impossible to quantify "civilized."

I do not accept that this is so. It may be difficult, and any quantification might be arbitrary, but to call the task impossible is false.

That's why modern anthropology is steering away from saying First, Second, or Third world.

Those models are primarily economic in character. They are not analogous to comparisons of a civilization's manners.

Who's to say that Roman civilization was "better" than any or all of the conquered nations' civilizations?

Nigh every anthropologist and historian, if not every educated person, to have lived in the thousand years which preceded the 1970s. See, I can appeal to authority too. The anthropologists to whom you refer, who reject classicism, are mere parvenus.

That's the same arrogant, patronizing attitude that has characterized/characterizes (to an extent) the Western world throughout history.

It's the same "arrogant, patronizing attitude" which pervades every society on this Earth. The ability of the Western Powers to earn their own sense of worth, does not make their self-adulation unique.

It is apparent in the study of history, that every civilization of any consequence considered itself to be in some way superior to all the others. China and Japan, two prominent Eastern Powers, thought exactly the same thing, and, indeed, referred to their neighbours as barbarians. An impartial comparison, not couched in the meek and ambivalent terms of which modern historians have become so enamoured (lacking the courage to defend an opinion, they simply avoid opinions), will affirm that China and Japan were indeed superior in philosophy and economy, to those neighbours which they disparaged.

Your view in this has, I suspect, taken the form of scorn for the presumption of aggressive nations, as Rome, Greece, China, Britain et cetera, and implicit sympathy for the conquered, as the Galls, the Persians, the Koreans and the Native Americans. To show the error of this view, if it be the one you hold, I need only submit, that the conquered were themselves expansionist powers. All nations are and always will be, until no nations remain. Vae victus.

To demand that the world be otherwise, is to demand that the very nature of man be made subject to your will, which is in itself an arrogant demand. Not that I condemn such arrogance; in fact I condone it. The meek shall never inherit the Earth.

But this point is rather off topic from the main topic, and we are both in agreement that Hitler was "wrong on almost everything".

If I have declared that to be my opinion, then I have misled you. I have not decided whether the Fuhrer was justified in his treatment of the Jews of Germany. Received Opinion holds that it was inherently wrong, but I cannot discover that there is any reason why this should be. It was certainly a distasteful business. Himmler himself struggled in the execution of his office. [1]

But how can it be declared a breach of morality to destroy a race, when there exists no universal morality? Indeed, the religious tradition of the Jews, holds that the Jewish people destroyed two races themselves. [2]

Vo Ritas Al Vunras remains incomplete, and as yet I have not conceived of a complete teaching on the destruction of a people. In fact, I had not thought it necessary until this moment. Certainly, however, if a nation were to persist in dishonour, and in the destruction of virtue, then I could not declare its annihilation to be immoral. And this is precisely what was alleged by the NSDAP. It is nigh impossible to discover the veracity of the claim, so shrouded is the history by propaganda and guile. Therefore, I remain ambivalent.

I do, however, agree with the principle, if not the substance of his racial policy. I do not consider Aryans to be limited to one nation or location (but then neither did Hitler), and I do not maintain that they ought to be of one skin colour either. I do, however, disparage the common negro.

EnigmaticMan(1846) Clarified
1 point

I was going to say something naughty

Methinks I had thought to say the self-same thing.

Then this sir, I am convinced, is the crux of our disagreement.

I cannot, though I endeavour to do so, conceive how it may be supposed, that an ideal is a dynamic thing, susceptible of improvement. The ideal of equality, being the possession of common and identical qualities between diverse matters, cannot be altered. If it were, then it would cease to be equality, and would become some other ideal. It is, surely, the same for all ideals, as beauty, intelligence, matter, light, dark and even "horseness" (upon which theme Plato had much fun).

They are, by definition, beyond the power of men, and thus beyond our alteration. We may only improve our understanding of ideals; we may not alter their nature.

Then why is a woman pressured by society to change her name upon marriage but not a man?

Because marriage is a Christian institution (in this case), and the Christian faith is inherently misogynistic. It does not reflect the attitude of general society.

And don't get me started on the image of the female body.

Males have evolved to find the image of the female body an inherently sexual one. It is impossible to revert this.

All women are, are things to look at that help around the house and make sons.

Women generally comprising one half of the population of any given nation, it is surely not beyond their capacity to resist objectification. Indeed, I submit that no such general suppression could have been maintained, nigh everywhere and through most of human history, without some inherent meekness on their part.

Just as racism is a personal opinion and cannot be banned but it should not be tolerated.

Racism is more than an opinion, as sexism is. It is an evolved trait. It ought, like other natural traits, to be conquered by philosophy and not by force.

You infer that women are inferior at something dominated by men for 6,000 years (because just 40 years ago women were allowed to enter the workforce)?

What is this "allowed"? Why must women be "allowed" by men to do anything, if women are equal to men? How can one equal force dominate another without its collusion?

You really didn't have to add the last part about small breasts.

I did. If you read the argument to which I answered, you would observe a reference to small penises, to which my statement about breasts was an obvious reaction.

Now you're just picking on someone you deem inferior to you and you're attempting to devalue them using things you think might hurt their dignity

No, I was pointing out, in an ironic fashion, that mine opponent was doing so. Perhaps if you thought before you typed, this would become clear.

Why don't you do some research on the history of feminism?

What has this to do with my juxtaposition?

Maybe the sexist of men can finally win the right to vote or enter the workforce or not be criticized by his breast size by the opposite sex.

This is gibberish.

Men also didn't have to face 6,000 years of patriarchy and oppression based on their sex, only achieving explicit freedom of sexism just 40 years ago, still fighting implicit sexism and some other forms of explicit sexism today.

I acknowledge this to be the reason for our apathy.

Would you like it if someone told you you were inferior because the only thing you were good at was lifting furniture?

I'd just refuse to lift any more furniture, until the inertia of bookcases caused them to retract the appraisal.

What if an entire society thought like that?

Most of society are consumerist, dishonourable and uneducated fools, who cogitate with their reproductive organs and pray to spirits. I am more concerned by this, than by sexism.

You don't know what it's like to feel like somehow you're less of a human being because you were born with a uterus.

That is an exaggeration. It has nothing to do with the presence of a uterus.

But that opinion hurts.

The concept of "freedom of conscience" would mean little if it applied only to benign opinions.

That's half the human population.

Half the human population should not have taken six thousand years to do something about sexism.

I have the right to be respected as an equal just as much as you do

I endeavour to respect you, but your lack of intellect or understanding makes this a difficult undertaking.

I don't view you lesser than me just because you're a man and I expect the same respect in return.

I have strenuously declared that I do not regard women as morally inferior, but you have ignored these declarations.

It can ultimately destroy everything humanity has worked so hard for.

That is nonsense. The bulk of our progress was made during the millennia in which sexism was rampant and institutionalised. It is therefore impossible to demonstrate that sexism is likely to erase that progress.

EnigmaticMan(1846) Clarified
1 point

Is your position that no improvements can be made to the platonic ideal of equality?

It is my position, sir, that no alteration can be made to an ideal; be it an improvement or a detraction.

EnigmaticMan(1846) Clarified
1 point

They fap it to My Little Pony and that therfore suggests low masculinity

Sexual instincts, which are so powerful that they can render lewd the most innocent of children's programmes, suggest a lack of masculinity?

Some may even want 12 year old girls which is just fucked up

You sound as though you work for Fox News.

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About Me

"Rumours abound that EnigmaticMan will return one day, to cleanse CreateDebate of the unlettered."

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Age: 25
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Country: United Kingdom
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Education: High School
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