• synthesis
    348
    It appears to this observer that most human effort (certainly on a collective scale) is geared towards obtaining something for nothing, that is, deriving methods for absconding with other folk's labor-value. Whether it is playing the grand casino stock market or simply having another in your employ, the idea is to somehow profit to a higher degree that what your own labor might produce.

    Now, I am anything but anti-capitalism (it being the least ugly shirt on the rack), but beyond the economic system itself, look at the lengths people go to defraud other folks. We currently live in an era where there are absolutely no limits to the creativity of the professional class of liars, cheats, thieves, and scammers.
  • baker
    583
    Like that financial guru said -- "Never tell people what you know, keep them poor".
  • TheMadFool
    8.6k
    obtaining something for nothingsynthesis

    What is your opinion of a person who takes this idea, if I may call it that, and flips it on its head and is interested in obtaining nothing for something? Altruism is still a thing right?
  • Miguel Hernández
    65

    Everyone believes that they derive their values from Plato, Saint Thomas or Kant. However, humanity is surrendered to Ponzi.

    Charles-Ponzi-123-11-2017.jpg
  • RogueAI
    352
    Most human effort is chasing idols we think will make us happy (fame, money, youth, beauty, etc.) and distracting ourselves from the true cause of our miseries. Pascal said it best: "All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone". That's what I want, above all else. Not something for nothing, but to be able to sit alone for 15 minutes without going crazy from boredom. Just be at peace with myself.
  • synthesis
    348
    What is your opinion of a person who takes this idea, if I may call it that, and flips it on its head and is interested in obtaining nothing for something? Altruism is still a thing right?TheMadFool

    Nothing for something no more exists than does something for nothing.

    Somebody is paying the freight.

    Even if somebody gives you something for "free," it is not really free, not only literally, but in all the other ways that makes the recipients of free stuff dependent.
  • synthesis
    348
    Nothing wrong with sitting in a room by yourself, but then again, there's nothing wrong with doing anything else as long as your are respectful of others rights.

    To each their own.
  • Pantagruel
    1.4k
    What is your opinion of a person who takes this idea, if I may call it that, and flips it on its head and is interested in obtaining nothing for something? Altruism is still a thing right?
    — TheMadFool

    Nothing for something no more exists than does something for nothing.
    synthesis

    That's not true. People have brought computers to me for such minor fixes I didn't charge them anything. If I can be a big help to someone with almost no effort on my part I'll do it every time. In fact, if everyone operated on this principle, it could easily be a second golden rule. Treat each person the way you would if you could be the answer their problem.
  • synthesis
    348
    If something has value, then somebody is paying for it. Even the banking community cannot create something for nothing as they work their magic through the dilution of value (monetary inflation).

    If your labor is creating value for somebody else, you paid for it. Value cannot be created out of thin air.
  • Pantagruel
    1.4k
    Ok, from a strictly "energic" standpoint and if you adhere to a labour theory of value. However, you premised the post on the fact that people can and do steal other people's labour. If that's the case, other people can and do give it away.
  • synthesis
    348
    Of course they can give it away. But it's not free.

    This entire idea of "free" is one of the greatest ruses of all-time. There is no such thing as "free." Is the air free? No, it just is. Anything that has economic value must be paid for by somebody.
  • Pantagruel
    1.4k
    This entire idea of "free" is one of the greatest ruses of all-time. There is no such thing as "free." Is the air free? No, it just is. Anything that has economic value must be paid for by somebody.synthesis

    With this I definitely agree. Lots of people believe that, if we could only solve the problem of limitless free energy, all the world's problems would be solved. Nothing could be further from the truth. All of that freely-consumed energy would end up spilling back into the biosphere, with devastating consequences.
  • synthesis
    348
    All off that freely-consumed energy would end up spilling back into the biosphere, with devastating consequences.Pantagruel

    Well, if Einstein was correct and E=MCxC, there should be no lack of energy available. I would think that technology should solve the energy issue reasonably well in the near future.

    What do you mean by energy spilling back into the biosphere?
  • Pantagruel
    1.4k
    What do you mean by energy spilling back into the biosphere?synthesis

    All of the energy that we currently consume on earth has been stored up on earth almost entirely from the sun. Every time we burn fossil fuels, we release back into the biosphere massive amounts of concentrated, stored solar energy. Every time you utilize energy, it dissipates throughout the system, mostly as heat. That's entropy,

    If we suddenly have a new source of energy, like cheap fusion, and our energy utilization rises by, say 1000%, that is ten times more heat being dissipated back into the biosphere. That's going to be a problem. Given that some corporate criminals are still trying to perpetrate the lie that climate change isn't happening, the same would certainly happen in such a case. It would surely lead to an environmental catastrophe.
  • baker
    583
    If your labor is creating value for somebody else, you paid for it. Value cannot be created out of thin air.synthesis
    But he is indebting other people for future favors back to him.
    He may have fixed someone's computer for no monetary charge this time, but he's also set up the option for the other person doing him a favor, as the opportunity presents itself.

    So much in life depends on favors which are difficult to put a price tag on, yet they can be enormously valuable.
  • baker
    583
    You don't think that a free lunch can only be found in mouse traps?
  • synthesis
    348
    Given that some corporate criminals are still trying to perpetrate the lie that climate change isn't happening, the same would certainly happen in such a case. It would surely lead to an environmental catastrophe.Pantagruel

    I am sort with George Carlin on this one whereas I don't really believe that man can cause much harm to the planet. Where the climate is no doubt changing, nobody really knows the extent to which we are contributing to such. If you look at all predictions over the last 50 years, it's kind of laughable.

    Climate is something that has cycles within cycles within cycles for reasons that we will probably never know. It's a 5B year old ecosystem of which we have scant data from the last several decades. That's not much help.

    If we do increase our energy consumption by 1000x perhaps this will have an effect but it seems to me that oceans and atmosphere can handle what man throws at them. If not, oh well, the planet will have to find a way to rid itself of our presence.
  • synthesis
    348
    People can do whatever they like. There are some who are incredible generous, but what's this have to do with my assertion that the main thing going on in this world (especially collectively) is scamming to steal other folks labor value?
  • Pantagruel
    1.4k
    I am sort with George Carlin on this one whereas I don't really believe that man can cause much harm to the planet. Where the climate is no doubt changing, nobody really knows the extent to which we are contributing to such.synthesis

    The current reputable scientific consensus is that it is "Human-caused."

    Given the revelation of the complexity and functionality of natural systems (systems theory), one wonders why we do not simply pursue an eco-friendly strategy as a matter of common prudence.
  • Paul S
    135
    And yet we all leave the world poor by that materialistic metric. We leave it as we came into it, with nothing. Wealth without affluence and some modicum of enlightenment is pointless folly. Hence the unhappiness with many rich people. It isn't ordinarily an enlightened philosophy that propels many to wealth, so you're not going to arrive at your destination happy. Often, the wealthy have a singular focus to be wealthy, at the cost of all else. And bathing in their own selfishness is their only way to reinforce their position that they at least got something for their efforts, which only worsens the condition. And seeing life as a zero sum game doesn't help, because you can never truly be happy in any non psychotic sense, by relishing the misery of others. Human beings are communal, in several layers. The breakdown of community at any one of these levels is not harmonious.

    Studies have shown that people are happier once their necessities are looked after - a home to live, food, family, love. Beyond that point, you are more than likely getting unhappier.
  • schopenhauer1
    5.1k
    Most human effort is chasing idols we think will make us happy (fame, money, youth, beauty, etc.) and distracting ourselves from the true cause of our miseries. Pascal said it best: "All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone". That's what I want, above all else. Not something for nothing, but to be able to sit alone for 15 minutes without going crazy from boredom. Just be at peace with myself.RogueAI

    That is a great quote. It goes along with Schopenhauer's regarding how if existing was fully positive in character, there would be no such thing as boredom when we are doing nothing. What is the economy but a socialized manifestation of our desires for survival, comfort, and entertainment wrapped in one system? Using others and having others use us "to get things done". Then people procreating and spreading the cycle of ceaseless dissatisfaction. Can't we be still, and die out in passive peace?
  • baker
    583
    I am sort with George Carlin on this one whereas I don't really believe that man can cause much harm to the planet.synthesis

    Then maybe you should go and live in a landfill.
  • synthesis
    348
    I am sort with George Carlin on this one whereas I don't really believe that man can cause much harm to the planet.
    — synthesis

    Then maybe you should go and live in a landfill.
    baker

    The arrogance of man, thinking that he can be a threat to the planet.

    A few decades (or perhaps centuries) after we have departed, we (and everything we have produced) will have been mixed back into the Earth, as (eventually) there will be not a trace that we were ever here...just the way it should be.
  • Pantagruel
    1.4k
    The arrogance of man, thinking that he can be a threat to the planet.synthesis

    Is this your qualified, scientific opinion? Final answer? Sounds like an excuse to piss in the pool to me.
  • synthesis
    348
    Is this your qualified, scientific opinion? Final answer? Sounds like an excuse to piss in the pool to me.Pantagruel

    Perhaps, like many, you have dedicated yourself to saving the planet and find my observation not to your liking, but there's not much I can about that.

    You should read science's predictions over the past fifty years and you may begin to realize just how much science knows about this sort of thing.
  • Pantagruel
    1.4k
    Perhaps, like many, you have dedicated yourself to saving the planet and find my observation not to your liking, but there's not much I can about that.synthesis

    Exactly. I wouldn't mind if you were saying we can't have any effect, and still doing all the things to remediate pollution, etc.
  • synthesis
    348
    Exactly. I wouldn't mind if you were saying we can't have any effect, and still doing all the things to remediate pollution, etc.Pantagruel

    My friend, I have never met anybody who likes pollution or did not take reasonable measures to do what they can to help in that regard.

    Are you thinking that there are legions of people going around and aimlessly polluting?
  • Pantagruel
    1.4k
    I think that there are people who are involved with corporate pollution who coincidentally happen to espouse climate-change denial. Look at the saga of leaded gasoline. Environmental lead levels skyrocketed for decades until something was finally done. Corporations are inherently dangerous to the health of humanity and need to be kept on a short leash.
  • synthesis
    348
    Corporations are inherently dangerous to the health of humanity and need to be kept on a short leash.Pantagruel

    I believe that all corporate charters should be revoked immediately. Afterwards, only non-profit corporations should be given 10 year charters like the good old days.

    It's been known for a couple of centuries that if you allowed corporations to gain power, the results would be fugly.
bold
italic
underline
strike
code
quote
ulist
image
url
mention
reveal
youtube
tweet
Add a Comment

Welcome to The Philosophy Forum!

Get involved in philosophical discussions about knowledge, truth, language, consciousness, science, politics, religion, logic and mathematics, art, history, and lots more. No ads, no clutter, and very little agreement — just fascinating conversations.