Sunday, January 31, 2010

Vogter2100 and moral stupidity.

AngieAntiTheist has a video in which she describes how she brings up her kid to be moral without religion. It's well thought out and clear both in terms of how she intends to raise a moral child and why.

Then the idiot Vogter chimes in with a response that calls the question stupid. He claims that morality is in our DNA and therefore we don't need to find out anything about it to be moral. As usual he accompanies his claims with insults to anyone who believes differently from him, in this case against their intelligence. Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Nietzsche, Rand, Russel, Molyneux they were all wasting their time according to him. All we have to do is let the instincts flow. Now I don't deny that we have a certain amount of morality encoded in our DNA but that this is sufficient to look after us without thinking. If that's the case Vogter, then how the hell did we get religion? Religion is against practically all the moral instincts that scientists have found to be inherited in our DNA, so how could it arise if simply allowing them full sway works? The fact is that the moral instincts like compassion don't answer often critical questions about morality well and sometimes they don't answer them at all.

For instance should we sterilise retarded people so that future generations aren't forced to take care of their subnormal offspring? Compassion tells us that burdening the poor of the future with the support of these people is bad. It also tells us that taking away the joy of raising a child from someone is also bad. Compassion tells us to help those in sweatshops in the third world, it does not tell us whether we do this better by boycotting sweatshops or by buying as much as possible from them so demand for and therefore the price of sweatshop labour goes up. Should we be compassionate for a whale killed to feed thousands of people or for the hundred of cows that would be slaughtered to feed them if it's spared? Is it better to spend one's time collecting money for Haitian earthquake victims or telling people why so many died in the first place? Because it looks like compassion would recommend the former, but without the later Haiti will continue it's present abysmal system and disasters will continue to kill Haitians in obscene numbers. As usual Vogter doesn't consider any non-obvious facts and even obvious facts that don't fit his viewpoint he ignores. In fact looking at any of Vogter's videos shows me why morality is never easy and what happens to you if you fail at it.