• Should humanity be unified under a single government?
    Personally, I would start with a national government run by well-trained and well-behaved philosophers, give it 50-100 years and if that worked out then I might just consider it. And, ideally, it should be a Christian one. I don't think I'd fancy the idea of a worldwide Islamic State to be honestApollodorus

    Well I agree an Islamic State is a very bad idea and a real threat... I disagree that a government or a society should ever have a singular religion, even if Christianity would be worlds better than Islam... I think an ideal system of government should necessarily disqualify the religious from holding office as political representatives over society. (I try to explain my reasoning below)

    I do not believe with any certainty that the religious are not correct in their particular religious belief (though admittedly I doubt that they are)... My personal skepticism towards any religious doctrine(s) is, I believe, irrelevant to this evaluation.

    I consider the role of a representative official as a job, much like any other in that there is a prerequisite to a person's qualification which is that they can (and will) do the job. If a job requires that a person must be able to aim and fire a gun and they cannot, though they may have good intentions in applying for the job, they are objectively unable to serve in that capacity...If a person is required to lift over 100 pounds in order to perform the duties of a job and they can't, then they are unable to serve in that capacity. It is not meant to insult or disgrace the applicant, it is just an objective fact.

    In society, applicants are screened for their qualifications... Generally, for the most important jobs with the highest stakes, the screening process is more rigorous... there are more qualifications, and the number of people in society who are qualified for the particular position shrinks dramatically...
    Furthermore, the screening process of any occupation is not randomly carried out by anonymous people, it is specific and carried out by experts who are familiar with the job being applied for.

    So, if more important jobs require more screening, then the most important job should require more screening than any of the others, and a higher bar for qualification... I'd imagine you and I do not disagree that the most important job, in a hypothetical world government, would be the execution and regulation of the government in tandem to those other people with that same job or above all others in the case of an executive like a president.

    So what are the qualifications? That is subjective, as it depends on what functions you have assigned to the job of executing the will and/or interests of a society...

    These are the main three functions I ascribe to a representative of any society

    1st function:
    (What should go without saying) To prioritize the job(or the function) above everything else.
    ----in the most important job in the society, it has never been so important for any job in that society that the person to whom we give the job is devoted to it in an absolutely zealous manner... they must be willing to die rather than to betray their objective... they cannot be selfish, under any circumstances. So, whatever functions we add after this, it is important that we are certain that the first qualification of the person is that they are able, willing, and absolutely determined to carry them out. They must be selfless.

    2nd function:
    -----To preserve the physical existence of the society over which he or she presides... No ideology of society, no moral injustice or cost to its comfort is so great as to forfeit the physical survival of the society altogether rather than to suffer that cost.

    3rd function:
    -----Within the limits of the second function, to increase and preserve the liberty and freedom of all the individual members of society... it is only the requirements of the second function that should (and will) limit the 3rd function, such that no one in society will ever have limitless liberty as long as they exist relative to others. We can only increase liberty through higher efficiency and sustainable material growth.

    The first three functions here describe the intentions I would require of a person before I would say that it is possible that the person could ever be considered perfectly "qualified" to be a representative of a society. To be a representative of all society, the primary candidates must pass the screening process and come closer than anyone to meeting these first 3 functions

    And the rest is a determination of whether they can carry out those intentions... Essentially just education and experience in the duties of a leader over society... Generally, a vast political, economical, historical, ethical, philosophical, and logical education and a proven record of success...

    A true follower of religion (or a shared, exclusive doctrinal ideology), is prevented from meeting the first two of my qualifications... given a choice, a true believer will (to the extent they are loyal to their religion) prioritize the spiritual ideology of society over its physical survival, as they believe that their specific ideology will correlate to an eternal, non physical survival after death which they prioritize over the impermanence of physical survival... therefore, should the general physical survival of a society ever become exclusive to the ideology of that person's religion, they will be bound by their loyalty to their religion to abandon the cause of physical survival for "spiritual" survival, which they always thought was more important... the religious tell us this quite often.

    I would ask a person applying for representative leadership who is religious this hypothetical question:
    "would you prefer that all of your society were physically destroyed tomorrow and everyone went to your version of heaven, or that your society were preserved physically for millions of years and every generation of that society went to your version of hell?"
    If they can answer with the second option, then I'd say they are a terrible adherent of their religion and a vicious person but, nonetheless, a potential political candidate. Though I would find them personally dislikable, as (according to their belief) they could only possibly carry out their function (according to this hypothetical) of preserving physical survival as they desired everlasting suffering for everyone to follow...they would be unlikely to carry out the third function...

    In any case, even if there are some religious ideologies that could potentially allow a follower to pass the qualifications (if they could prioritize the physical wellbeing of society over an ideology of non physical wellbeing), it is dangerous to pick favorites with religion, because we would could bring about a "world religion" which would be a terrible risk to society should that religion (whatever it may be) evolve over time into a less sustainable form which contradicts the function of a representative official
  • Should humanity be unified under a single government?
    There are reasons isolated pockets of civilization are beneficial. Example, if a contagion is released or all-out war unfolds (ie. the place goes down the tubes) at least not everyone has to die or be afflicted by whatever as well. Corruption also, everybody can kind of "watch each other" and call out egregious abuses against those who commit it with no one entity ever being able to so easily or casually "overpower" the collective might of "everyone".

    Transparency and accountability, best defense against the tyrannical and beastly abomination that is unrestrained human nature with all it's greed and indifference.

    Hey Outlander, thanks for the response,

    These are good points

    Yes, a system of separate nations was sustainable...even beneficial, as a way for civilization to experience evolution through turmoil rather than total destruction... war was also sustainable as odd as that sounds... a fight between Medieval Britain and France did not threaten the actual survival of humans

    but the individual governments are growing

    There will be a war. I know its a cliche to say that but think about this trend over time... let's be generous and say this era of peace after WWI and WWII will continue for another 76 years... lets make it 100 (unlikely)
    How confident should we be that after a century no superpower has even once used the full extent of it's military might in defense or offense against another superpower...?


    How confident should we be that the full might of one superpower exercised in a war effort 100 years from now (let alone two or three of them) will not either result in some victors empire built on bones such as Hitler nearly built 80 years ago, or a total destruction of humanity by nuclear holocaust, (or by the utilization of some much worse weaponry to be built years from now)... as "sci fi" as that might sound, people would have laughed if you predicted the level of devastation which we would invent with the atomic bomb...
    And consider in what area of technology governments will invest the most time, effort, and resources over these 100 years (at their current rate which won't change as long as nations remain seperate and in competition)... war and things that go boom.

    We can't survive war anymore, currently...and that fact will become exponentially more true over time, quite rapidly.. so, regrettably, I don't see an alternative (in the long term) to a world regulator, or a world government...
  • All things wrong with antinatalism
    The only way one could imagine "too much" pain (suffering) is as it would prevent pleasure entirely... but, as pain and pleasure can only exist in conjunction with each other, pain (stress) can never so far outweigh pleasure (relief) as to render it impossible for the thing that experiences them.
    — Marigold23

    I totally disagree.

    I'd like to rephrase what I said here
    Anyone may say some amount of pain is "Too much pain" if by that they mean it has passed a boundary of pain which they would be comfortable with... In fact, no pain is generally comfortable so a person may say all pain is, by subjective definition, "too much pain", if they're just referring to their feelings regarding it.

    Therefore, I assume by "too much pain" we must be referring to a point at which pain or discontent for an organism passes an objective limit where it fundamentally destroys the functional capacity of the organism to experience it... Death, in other words... if an organism is not destroyed by pain or discontent, then it is not "too much pain".(except by a subjective evaluation).

    Pain after all is meant to be functional, and one may see how it can fail in this function and be described as "too much" or even "too little"...same with pleasure, if we are referring to some function which they carry out. That function seems most likely to be life preservation and reproduction of the organism, like most biological functions.

    And of course, If pain results in death directly, then it may prevent pleasure from being experienced as well as pain... but, as an organism survives, it must be able to experience both pain and relief from pain... they go together in living things...

    I actually agreed with antinatalism for some time, so I feel a bit like I'm talking with my past self. I find antinatalism to be an intelligent conclusion in a lot of respects... I like its devotion to the adamant regret of all pain and discontent in itself.
    People want pain to be relieved and pleasure to increase... but I believe they cannot want "not to be" or for pain and pleasure to be eliminated. To say "I would prefer never to have been" is the same as saying "I would prefer not to be." To believe that it would be better "never to have been" is a prerequisite to antinatalism. There is a fallacy in that statement: For one, as I said, a person can only truly desire what s/he can conceive (what has been experienced)...while a person may imagine death (as an idea of non being and non feeling like unconscious sleep), and act upon that imagining, say, to commit suicide, they cannot truly conceive of non existence, and so we must conclude they acted not with any negative association to their actual existence, but to some object or stimulation in their this extent, I must conclude that all suicide is, to some extent, unintended or accidental with regard to the relationship between the intention of the suicidal in reducing pain/discontent and the actual outcome of suicide which is pain and pleasure both being eliminated (rather than reduced) in the death of that person's ability to associate (or to think and feel)... A person cannot truly desire a state which is beyond conception. This is not to say that a suicidal person cannot understand the truth of this... in the same way that an alcoholic doesn't act logically due to the stress upon the mind in a chemical imbalance from addiction, there are all sorts of mental stimulation which hinder logical action... extreme pain and discontent are among them. There is no requirement that people must act logically, but there is a requirement that we cannot act based on inconceivable concepts... and an illogical act (like suicide) could however be a reasonable or understandable act if the discontent is more than a person can bear... but they cannot possibly associate negatively to their existence itself...we do not experience existence itself...we experience noticeable or "experience-able" things... a thing (or state) couldn't possibly experience itself because experience requires detachment from stimuli prior to any noticeable contact with it. We cannot, as we exist, be detached from existence in itself in order to experience it, and so positive or negative association with it is absurd, just as it is absurd to associate positively or negatively with non existence...

    For another thing, a desire is expressive of a current state and past states leading up to it... to regret being itself would necessitate regret of that regret... (an association to your association). In other words, if you could truly conceive of your existence or non existence in the first place, (which you can't) and you were to associate negatively to your existence, you would also be associating negatively with that negative association. This is an absurdity, because we don't regret the fact of our regret...
    try it... do you regret your regret?... if that were so, then wouldn’t you stop regretting?
    And if you don’t regret your regret, then you can’t possibly regret your existence which is a prerequisite to your decision to regret.

    As far as the responsibility of parents for their children, I would also generally agree with you that parents are (most of time) intentionally, causally responsible, in tandem to nature itself.

    Any moral responsibility though is not universal but relative and subjective, though I would also agree subjectively that there is a moral responsibility of the parents in caring for their children.
  • All things wrong with antinatalism
    There at least couple of arguments, which relate on suffering: The first one argues that "life is suffering" is not true in general, but life contains too much of it.

    And the other one. This is more complex.
    It´s about rights and obligations. I will say we don´t have obligation for anyone to have a child, and same time we have no right to have a child.

    In murder the murderer extremely violates the rights of victim of murder very bad, her/his autonomy and sovereignty. Even so, when the murder is painless and does not contain any negative emotions of the victim.
    I think these thinks - autonomy and sovereignty - are violated also when persons are going to have a child. I have to also admit, that in this case the violation is more questionable.

    And I´m not saying that murdering people and having a child are ethically at same level. Not at all. But both of those acts have some similar features

    Hey Antinatalist,
    I've read Schopenhauer's "Studies in Pessimism" and "the Conspiracy Against the Human Race" by Thomas Ligotti. Beautiful and intelligent works of literature that reveal the complex puppetry of our existence and the constant carrot on a stick which seems to deceive us... however, i think this kind of evaluation of reproduction as a moral act is a bit absurd.
    For one, the idea that a child is begotten or created (such that it emerges out of nothing into being) is an old myth. Children are, relative to one reproductive partner, an expression of the other partner. If a man has a child with a woman, we may say he "sculpted" the child from her (as out of a preexisting template)... the woman who bears the child, from her perspective, has also "sculpted" the child from the father in the same way. Neither one has "created" the child. And even if we tried to say the man and the woman together created the child, we find that, even from this perspective, they "sculpted" the child from matter itself which they must have consumed and then used in the act of fertilization and embryonic development. ..."creation" or "conception" is not something that can be physically defined in nature... there are only stages of process, of which we cannot ascribe beginning or end except by arbitrary, subjective description. As odd as it may seem, the desire that manifests in a child (or in any thing) is inseparable from the same active forces responsible for it's manifestation... desire (the mechanism) may affect some organism to do something, to feel pain in some instance or to desire some stimuli that another organism might have an opposite reaction to, but the "desire" in itself is inseparable and identical as a force between them... it is just an objective fact of physical reality...

    Pain and desire is not bad in itself by any evaluation…

    Also, pain is discovered to be the same force as pleasure, just as in a magnetic pole, repulsion is the same force to the pole as attraction... the negative is the same force as the positive... You cannot eliminate one without elimination of the other. You cannot have one in the absense of the other.

    Now then, if it is maintained that pain (as it is always conjoined to the experience of pleasure) is not bad in itself, why do we still care about reducing it?

    Here is a semantic distinction which is very important… we should always seek to reduce pain and pleasure to such a degree that both experiences are sustainable together. We cannot say we wish to end pain or pleasure in ourselves or others, because that is like saying we would like to destroy reactivity. It is impossible for us to conceive in the first place… we also can't say we would prefer not to create pain or pleasure, because it is just as impossible to create the dynamic between pain and pleasure as it is to destroy it… it seems that we can only increase or decrease the experience of pain or pleasure to its opposite… we should like to avoid pain, so it's natural that we should reduce it as it is comfortable for us to do so, but we don't want to eliminate it entirely, as that would imply that we also wish to eliminate pleasure, or that we wish to eliminate wishing, which is absurd… we can't want what we can't in the first place conceive.

    There is an instinctual responsibility of parents to their children (empathy and a nurturing capacity is usually a part of our psychology)… There is a social responsibility of parents for their children which we require for the sake of society's sustainability (such that we demand, regardless of a parents desire to look after children, that they must do so). Likewise we insist that embryos with terrible deformities should be aborted because they cannot sustain their own existence and would be a burden on society. But, there is no objective, universal responsibility of parents for offspring any more than there is any objective right or wrong, or any more than it could be possible for a parent(s) to create the child in the first place… the parent(s) did not conceive the child like a God creating a human with some intention for the human in itself… the child occurs as a byproduct of sex and the parents have been "programmed" to care for it and raise it so that sex can keep happening…

    If humans had hundreds of kids at a time, they would be less likely to be nurturing at all… like crabs that have hundreds of babies and snack on some of them, because it doesn't affect natural selection at all for the crab… It is a natural selection of behavior just as much as of the organization which behaves…

    As much as we may think otherwise, we really don't care what the consequences of our desires are in the manipulation of physical reality so long as that ability to experience desire is not prohibited by that manipulation (so long as we don't expect a stomach ache from the expression of our desire in eating one more cupcake, for example).

    The only way one could imagine "too much" pain (suffering) is as it would prevent pleasure entirely... but, as pain and pleasure can only exist in conjunction with each other, pain (stress) can never so far outweigh pleasure (relief) as to render it impossible for the thing that experiences them.
    At most pain (or pleasure) could so outweigh its opposite as to change the organization quite drastically, even from living to non living...even in some instances resulting in the conscious decision of a thinking organism to self destruct and force a drastic organizational change from living to non living... but never "too much" except by some arbitrary evaluation of what constitutes "too much".