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Animal Research for Fun and Profit
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Sojobo



Joined: 12 Jul 2006
Posts: 2433

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ibian wrote:
I said nothing about morals.

You directly responded to dazedb42, even quoting his phrase about custodianship. He was talking about morals. If you were not, then your response was gibberish.

Furthermore, your use of the idiom, "Law of the jungle," is, in fact, talking about morals. It's inherent in the phrase.

Ibian wrote:
You dont know, and you wont know what i think about that, until you ask about it.

Fortunate for me, then, that my posts have responded to what you posted, rather than what you "think about that."

Ibian wrote:
Assumptions, again.

I have made no assumptions about you, unlike, I must mention, yourself, who assumed that I was a "bleeding heart animal rights activist."
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Ibian



Joined: 30 Mar 2008
Posts: 182

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I'm glad your impressively large human brain is capable of telling the difference between mouse's message of responcibility and restraint with your own message of superiority and dominance.

Or wait, that other thing, where I'm horrified you can't.

Classic. Sarcasm is such a lovely tool to fall back on.

Anyway,

Responsibility and restraint implies that we already have superiority and dominance.

I wonder what it is that makes most people so afraid of admitting their own nature.
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Bart



Joined: 22 Jul 2006
Posts: 1572

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ibian wrote:
Quote:
I'm glad your impressively large human brain is capable of telling the difference between mouse's message of responcibility and restraint with your own message of superiority and dominance.

Or wait, that other thing, where I'm horrified you can't.

Classic. Sarcasm is such a lovely tool to fall back on.

Anyway,

Responsibility and restraint implies that we already have superiority and dominance.

I wonder what it is that makes most people so afraid of admitting their own nature.


I agree that we are "dominant and superior", but that does not imply that we are free to do as we wish. It burdens us with the duty to show that restraint.
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Samsally



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 6321

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Modesty and a disinclination to claim responcibility.

However, the messages are different and basing your entire argument on one vague implication isn't a very good way to get people to agree with you.
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Ibian



Joined: 30 Mar 2008
Posts: 182

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
You directly responded to dazedb42, even quoting his phrase about custodianship. He was talking about morals. If you were not, then your response was gibberish.

I objected to his specific use of that word, but the idea itself is similar. Custodianship can only happen if we are the dominant specie on the planet. And it requires that we have the power and will to decide what animals live or die. A more benevolent way to say "we are gods", but that is still what it says.

Quote:
Furthermore, your use of the idiom, "Law of the jungle," is, in fact, talking about morals. It's inherent in the phrase.

The law of the jungle says that the strongest calls the shots. And thats all it says. A lion wont kill a gazelle if it is not hungry. There is nothing amoral about it.
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Ibian



Joined: 30 Mar 2008
Posts: 182

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I agree that we are "dominant and superior", but that does not imply that we are free to do as we wish. It burdens us with the duty to show that restraint.

If, and only if, we willingly choose to think like that. Nobody is forcing us.
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Sojobo



Joined: 12 Jul 2006
Posts: 2433

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ibian wrote:
The law of the jungle says that the strongest calls the shots. And thats all it says. A lion wont kill a gazelle if it is not hungry. There is nothing amoral about it.

Precisely.

That's why I said your conclusion was that it is not immoral to experiment on animals.
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Ibian



Joined: 30 Mar 2008
Posts: 182

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wont object to that. But thats only a small part of "things that are acceptable to do to animals".
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E-boy



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 1552
Location: Virginia (Much barfiness)

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ibian wrote:
Quote:
I agree that we are "dominant and superior", but that does not imply that we are free to do as we wish. It burdens us with the duty to show that restraint.

If, and only if, we willingly choose to think like that. Nobody is forcing us.


Correct, but failure to "Take the high road" seems to me to negate most of what you seem to think makes us different from "animals".

As for my opinion? Humans ARE animals. I think all life is valuable, because ultimately we are utterly dependent on the biosphere we inhabit (We have yet to successfully produce a functioning self contained artificial ecology). Having said that, I do put a proportionately higher value on human life. Based on what I know though arbitrary line drawing to determine acceptable conduct towards given species is extremely simplistic. Particularly if you aren't even willing to truly think about the issue. In the end some amount of arbitrariness will have to enter into the choices we make, but they can be far better informed than you seem to think. Most of the great apes for example have emotional and cognitive lives on par with human children. That's pretty fucking smart. I wouldn't countenance experiments on human children and therefore, having thought it through, I don't think performing such experiments on higher primates like the great apes is a morally defensible position. Of course, it wasn't until relatively recently we were aware of just how rich the mental life of these fellow primates was, but now we know.

If you want to define human beings as fundamentally different and a special case, you need to provide evidence to that effect. Evidence based on demonstrateable facts not on your personal feelings of entitlement or superiority.

Personally, I think we are special in many ways, but not in some divine way. In short, convenient pigeon holing is simply indefensible. I have no problem with medical experiments providing due consideration is given to that particular animal's cognitive capacity and the associated capacity for suffering. This means that, in my view, animals with higher level mental faculties such as the afore mentioned great apes should not be molested in any way. If our moral system allows us to experiment on an animal as smart as a human child with nary a qualm, but balks at performing the same experimentation on a brain dead human being, there is something very wrong going on.
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mouse



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 17051
Location: under the bed

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ibian wrote:
Just because i can admit that i feel above the other animals doesnt mean i wanna rape baby seals or whatever you are imagining.

Humans > animals. You said as much yourself.


no - i said i value uniqueness, and on an individual level, more complex organisms are unique in more dimensions. so people - and dogs and cats and apes and any number of other things, are complex enough that they have skills or abilities that may be unusual and valuable and "personalities", if you will, things that make individuals distinct. and i value that.

i tend to appreciate the uniqueness of humans in particular, because i am human, and so most sensitive to them. but you apparently missed the bit where i said i would accept limitation to humans to preserve other species.

i don't think you want to rape baby seals. i think you fail to appreciate that other things have value simply for being themselves, and that they deserve respect, simply because they exist. we are not lords and masters, we are part of the whole. we are the part that has an unusual ability to manipulate the environment, and that has the intelligence to understand the implications of that manipulation. that doesn't mean we dominate - it means we have special responsibilities. and those, in turn, impose limits on us. i get the feeling you don't want the responsibilities or the limits, that you want to preserve a hierarchy that you believe places us indisputably above them. hate to tell you - but one of the things we have learned from study of the environment is just how dependent we are on "them", how much our survival depends on us respecting them.

that's the part you seem to have missed.
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Ibian



Joined: 30 Mar 2008
Posts: 182

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Correct, but failure to "Take the high road" seems to me to negate most of what you seem to think makes us different from "animals".

Didnt say what my opinion on that matter is so it doesnt really apply.

Quote:
Humans ARE animals.

Yep. But that in itself doesnt mean anything.

Quote:
I think all life is valuable, because ultimately we are utterly dependent on the biosphere we inhabit (We have yet to successfully produce a functioning self contained artificial ecology).

Depends. Biodiversity has decreased, but that doesnt necessarily mean that the biosphere has become worse. There could easily be cases where killing off a given specie has overall beneficial results for us, for example.

Quote:
If you want to define human beings as fundamentally different and a special case, you need to provide evidence to that effect. Evidence based on demonstrateable facts not on your personal feelings of entitlement or superiority.

We are humans. Every other animal is not. Its that simple.

The "us > them" mentality is a completely normal trait, and pretty universal among pack animals.

Quote:
Personally, I think we are special in many ways, but not in some divine way.

Lets not go there. Someone has to be on top of the food chain and it happens to be us. There is nothing divine about that, its just a lucky coincidence.

Quote:
I have no problem with medical experiments providing due consideration is given to that particular animal's cognitive capacity and the associated capacity for suffering. This means that, in my view, animals with higher level mental faculties such as the afore mentioned great apes should not be molested in any way. If our moral system allows us to experiment on an animal as smart as a human child with nary a qualm, but balks at performing the same experimentation on a brain dead human being, there is something very wrong going on.

A blade of grass is just as alive as your great ape. The reason you can eat lettuce without having moral pains over taking its life or the pain it might feel, is that it is different enough from us that you dont attribute any human qualities to it. Its an opinion based on emotion.

And for the record, i dont regard humans as especially smart. We are driven mainly by emotion and instinct, and most people have little to no idea why they think and feel the way they do. We just happen to be smarter than the other dumb animals.
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Ibian



Joined: 30 Mar 2008
Posts: 182

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
no - i said i value uniqueness, and on an individual level, more complex organisms are unique in more dimensions. so people - and dogs and cats and apes and any number of other things, are complex enough that they have skills or abilities that may be unusual and valuable and "personalities", if you will, things that make individuals distinct. and i value that.

Why do you value it? Is there some logical objective reasoning behind it, or is it something based on emotion?

Quote:
i tend to appreciate the uniqueness of humans in particular, because i am human, and so most sensitive to them. but you apparently missed the bit where i said i would accept limitation to humans to preserve other species.

I didnt miss it, i just didnt comment on it, and it doesnt contradict with anything i have said so i dont know why you would bring it up.

Quote:
i don't think you want to rape baby seals. i think you fail to appreciate that other things have value simply for being themselves, and that they deserve respect, simply because they exist.

This is something i have not given my opinion on yet.

Quote:
we are not lords and masters, we are part of the whole. we are the part that has an unusual ability to manipulate the environment, and that has the intelligence to understand the implications of that manipulation. that doesn't mean we dominate - it means we have special responsibilities. and those, in turn, impose limits on us. i get the feeling you don't want the responsibilities or the limits, that you want to preserve a hierarchy that you believe places us indisputably above them. hate to tell you - but one of the things we have learned from study of the environment is just how dependent we are on "them", how much our survival depends on us respecting them.

Ah yes, the spiderman mantra.

We are the strongest specie, that means we are by definition lords and masters. How we go about ruling the world is what matters, but the fact that we do rule is not in question.

Responsibility to whom? There is nobody above us. You are talking about self imposed limits as if there was someone ordering us to follow them.
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Pontupo



Joined: 07 Mar 2008
Posts: 740
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 1:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There doesn't have to be someone or something "forcing" us to take responsibility for how we treat other living things. Many people believe in the notion of "fundamental" truth, that there are real objective truths. In this case, responsibility can be seen a fundamental aspect of rational existence. Because you (Ibian) are so set on the "power makes you right," you seem to disregard the notion that responsibility doesn't necessarily have to be "imposed" by ourselves or anyone else, it may just be.

One alternative approach to presenting moral obligation towards care for the ecosystem as a whole and genuine effort on the part of protecting the interests of other species is to cast these obligations as obligations to humanity, rather than obligations to these species or to the ecosystem. That is, it is in humanities best interest to minimize our impact on the natural world since our activities may fuck it up for us, making it impossible for us to live either. Unfortunately, I'm not so sure that approach has an easy direct application to experimenting on animals.

My personal belief is that it's wrong to unnecessarily harm other living things. We have a responsibility to consider the moral implications of the actions that we take and to seek the path that promises to do the least harm whenever possible. If you have to kill, you have to kill, but if you don't, you ought to avoid it.
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Puma



Joined: 31 Mar 2008
Posts: 1908
Location: I, er, oh.

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 4:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe this is just my inferiority complex speaking, but given the large number of animals that could kill me very easily, it's difficult for me to see myself as lord and master of anything.

Also this thread keeps making me think of this:
long ago and far away, Ibian wrote:
Which doesnt change that people who are very sure of themselves are usually not very bright.
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Ibian



Joined: 30 Mar 2008
Posts: 182

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 7:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
There doesn't have to be someone or something "forcing" us to take responsibility for how we treat other living things. Many people believe in the notion of "fundamental" truth, that there are real objective truths. In this case, responsibility can be seen a fundamental aspect of rational existence. Because you (Ibian) are so set on the "power makes you right," you seem to disregard the notion that responsibility doesn't necessarily have to be "imposed" by ourselves or anyone else, it may just be.

It lacks rationality. If there is nobody forcing us to follow those rules, where do they come from? What is their basis other than personal opinion?

Quote:
One alternative approach to presenting moral obligation towards care for the ecosystem as a whole and genuine effort on the part of protecting the interests of other species is to cast these obligations as obligations to humanity, rather than obligations to these species or to the ecosystem. That is, it is in humanities best interest to minimize our impact on the natural world since our activities may fuck it up for us, making it impossible for us to live either. Unfortunately, I'm not so sure that approach has an easy direct application to experimenting on animals.

Its a little late for that given how the world looks, but that aside i dont see how our impact on the world is somehow different from any other animal. We are just another kind of creature acting on instinct, just like all the others. Why should we be the only ones to restrain our natural compulsions?
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