• Terrapin Station
    10.4k
    That is not the issue at hand. The issue is, no one needs to assess anything, if they don't exist.schopenhauer1

    The issue at hand according to whom?
  • schopenhauer1
    3k
    The issue at hand according to whom?Terrapin Station

    Argument of antinatalism- not having children. There is no one who is deprived of anything. There is no one who exists to need...anything actually.
  • Terrapin Station
    10.4k
    Argument of antinatalism- not having children. There is no one who is deprived of anything. There is no one who exists to need...anything actually.schopenhauer1

    ?? The reason that I quoted this: "The quality of life of a yet to be born child is not a totally unknowable, transcendent mystery" is because that's the claim I was addressing. I wasn't addressing any broader claim or argument than that.
  • Bitter Crank
    7.9k
    some actual person will always experience harm if born (the Benatar asymmetry argument).schopenhauer1

    The same actual person will also experience good--quite possibly much more good than suffering.

    In the words of a song from decades ago, "I beg your pardon; I never promised you a rose garden". Life is a mix of good and bad. Everybody knows that.

    Antinatalism, like perfect socialism, can become an idée fixe, an obsession of sorts.

    Being born means moving into a constantly deprived state.schopenhauer1

    Since we do not live in a system of continual homeostasis, that's true. We are always running short of something. If you stop breathing you will run short of oxygen. If you stop eating you will run short of calories. An idée fixe can lead one to be deprived of philosophical options.

    Life presents challenges to overcome and burdens to deal with.schopenhauer1

    Amen to that. Like the fucking grass is causing me to suffer because it is supposed to be kept short. What's wrong with long grass?

    Contingent harm is harm that is situational. You simply do not know how much harms there are in life for a certain person. This creates huge collateral damage that was not meant for the child to endure, but he/she must do it nonetheless.schopenhauer1

    As I often say, "You just never know where the next disaster will strike."

    We are used as "technology/progress" advancers by a circular-production system.schopenhauer1

    Now here I think you have an excellent idea. Being the pinko commie I am, I naturally see capitalism as an evil system of continual expansion, an all-consuming juggernaut, moloch, gang of ravening thugs, etc. that subverts nature to its imperative for continually larger profits which turns out suffering by the megaton.

    Capitalism manages to produce a good share of the suffering to which antinatalists object. When will you become a member of at least the Democratic Socialists of America?
  • Bitter Crank
    7.9k
    It is too late to be antinatalist. If one were going to nip child-bearing in the bud, one would have to have been actively promoting antinatalism to the immediate descendants of Homo Erectus. The day we became Homo sapiens -- hundreds of thousands of years ago -- was the day you should have been out and about preaching antinatalism. Now with 7.2 billion people, it is just too late. It is impossible to convince 7.2 billion people of ANYTHING.
  • god must be atheist
    249
    So it's a new word, antinatalism. There is another new word: pro-suffering.

    Anti-baby. Pro-death.

    Anti-life. Pro-green.

    Anti-john, pro-rape.

    Anti-sex, pro-abstinence.

    Anti-reason, pro-stupidity.

    Anti-good, pro-evil.

    etc.
  • Wallows
    8.5k


    I never meant to imply that all antinatalists are all depressed blokes. But, that they are projecting their own concerns about the world onto the rest of humanity, and that this is a form of overgeneralizing, along with black and white thinking to do so.
  • god must be atheist
    249

    Antinatalists are trying to save the world form overpopulation. Antinatalism is the key to prevent the complete destruction of mankind and possibly of all life on the globe. Whether through mental-emotional depression, or else due to having the whole thing thought through properly, is a secondary consideration.
  • Wallows
    8.5k


    This is new. I've never seen such an argument professed by any antinatalist...
  • Wallows
    8.5k
    I can keep going, but I won't. You get the picture. Antinatalism prevents suffering for all, and forcing people into the world. No ONE loses out by not being born, but EVERYONE loses in some way by being born. My inaction to create someone hurts, literally NO ONE. Someone else's action to birth someone, always creates some harm, and if we believe that being deprived is a negative state, there is constant suffering there too.schopenhauer1

    More blatant overgeneralizing and black-and-white thinking. If you don't like those labels, then here's a new one: Your creating one hellova-straw man here. Besides, children don't live in isolation from their parents. Usually, every child has a parent that looks after them and raises them the best they could. That this sentiment doesn't always turn out as true is another matter.
  • Marchesk
    2.7k
    It is too late to be antinatalist. If one were going to nip child-bearing in the bud, one would have to have been actively promoting antinatalism to the immediate descendants of Homo Erectus. The day we became Homo sapiens -- hundreds of thousands of years ago -- was the day you should have been out and about preaching antinatalism. Now with 7.2 billion people, it is just too late. It is impossible to convince 7.2 billion people of ANYTHING.Bitter Crank

    That leads to a thought experiment. Say you stumbled across a time machine in your neighbor's garage, activated it and found yourself among the first modern human beings. You're also aware that like the Avengers, you can't actually change the future, you can only effect a different timeline. So here you are with the first humans, who naturally think of you as the great ancestral spirit come to give them advice. Now's your chance to preach antinatilism, which will be so persuasive that it works.

    Do you convince them to not have kids knowing what's in store for the human race? Granted it's different time line but still good likelihood for war, genocide and capitalism. Also, reality tv.

    The question is has it been worth it? Now that we're here, we make the best of it. But if you're Captain America, do you skip Peggy Carter and go back to talk the first humans out of procreating, so all the terrible things in history are avoided? Or do you think that hundreds of years of slavery are worth your doppleganger's enjoyment of sipping on some wine while watching The Bachelor?
  • T Clark
    3.4k
    Do you convince them to not have kids knowing what's in store for the human race?Marchesk

    Keeping in mind, of course, that effective, reasonably priced, and widely available contraception - a prerequisite for anti-natalism - wasn't available until about 60 years ago.
  • Marchesk
    2.7k
    Keeping in mind, of course, that effective, reasonably priced, and widely available contraception - a prerequisite for anti-natalism - wasn't available until about 60 years ago.T Clark

    Okay, but you take some back with you, or bring a doctor to sterilize. With their consent after you've convince them, naturally. No reason to not start things unethically.
  • Marchesk
    2.7k
    Actually, an even better version of the time machine argument is that you don't create a separate time line unless you do time travel and step on a prehistoric butterfly. If you do, then you've automatically duplicated humanity's sufferring (on average - history might go a bit differently).

    So would you create another world of human history?
  • T Clark
    3.4k
    Okay, but you take some back with you, or bring a doctor to sterilize. With their consent after you've convince them, naturally. No reason to not start things unethically.Marchesk

    I wasn't really quibbling with your thought experiment. It's just that, when I read it, it struck me that the whole anti-natalist argument is a product of our modern technological world.
  • Marchesk
    2.7k
    That's a good point. I guess our great-great-great-great grandparents could have just abstained? But that would have increased their own suffering.
  • god must be atheist
    249
    It is too late to be antinatalist. If one were going to nip child-bearing in the bud, one would have to have been actively promoting antinatalism to the immediate descendants of Homo Erectus. The day we became Homo sapiens -- hundreds of thousands of years ago -- was the day you should have been out and about preaching antinatalism. Now with 7.2 billion people, it is just too late. It is impossible to convince 7.2 billion people of ANYTHING.Bitter Crank

    Don't blame me. It's hard to be there 200000 years back when you were born only 65 years ago.

    Gimme a time machine and I'll do it in a flash.
  • god must be atheist
    249
    So here you are with the first humans, who naturally think of you as the great ancestral spirit come to give them advice.Marchesk
    Descental spirit. Not ancestral. Otherwise, correct.
  • god must be atheist
    249
    Do you convince them to not have kids knowing what's in store for the human race?
    — Marchesk

    Keeping in mind, of course, that effective, reasonably priced, and widely available contraception - a prerequisite for anti-natalism - wasn't available until about 60 years ago.
    T Clark

    Okay, no pills. But maybe there were plenty of sheep and ducks in the fields and rivers.
  • god must be atheist
    249
    I wasn't really quibbling with your thought experiment. It's just that, when I read it, it struck me that the whole anti-natalist argument is a product of our modern technological world.T Clark

    Please see my previous post of geese and sheep.
  • Marchesk
    2.7k
    Descental spirit. Not ancestral. Otherwise, correct.god must be atheist

    Well, the primitive human view of time travel is such that they call it "ancestral", since you're from an alternate timeline, and therefore cannot be their descendant, particularly after you convince them to use birth control.
  • god must be atheist
    249


    Well, there you go. (Hehe.) So... how is your species working out?

    I was asked in several occasions in the past by very serious people which planet I had come from.
  • Bitter Crank
    7.9k
    I'm not an antinatalist, so I wouldn't want them to not have children. Actually Homo sapiens did very well for the first 190,000 years -- really an excellent record of sustainable life-style and resource conservation. Some say that our first really BIG MISTAKE was agriculture. So, let's go back just 10,000 or 12,000 years and tell them that raising their own food will lead to nothing good, and that in time (all too soon) one thing will lead to another and they'll wish they had never been born.

    So we say, "Just stick with the nuts, berries, roots, herbs, and roast meat. It's keeping you healthy, strong, tall, and sexy. So just keep on keeping on. Forget about making bricks, planting corn, and domesticating horses. The dog is all you need, really. We will return every 1000 years to make sure that you don't get in over your heads and go all modern. If you do go all modern on us, we will commit suicide by lining you all up and shooting you."
  • schopenhauer1
    3k
    Now here I think you have an excellent idea. Being the pinko commie I am, I naturally see capitalism as an evil system of continual expansion, an all-consuming juggernaut, moloch, gang of ravening thugs, etc. that subverts nature to its imperative for continually larger profits which turns out suffering by the megaton.

    Capitalism manages to produce a good share of the suffering to which antinatalists object. When will you become a member of at least the Democratic Socialists of America?
    Bitter Crank

    Indeed, we are ignorant of the millions of ideas that some engineer-types thought of. Their ideas which satisfied their intellectual curiosity.. created millions of boring jobs for others who are less creative in the technology world.. We are mostly ignorant of the very outputs we consume from these engineers, we live an existence where we know we know when we don't like doing a task, but have to do it anyways (unlike other animals), and no there is no solution, including communism for the problem of work, and the existentially configured human who must deal with it. We have to find motivation. Other animals don't. We have to find meaning. Other animals don't. We are simply minutia-mongers pretending there's meaning in the mongering.
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