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From The Censored Pile

The Philosophy Stack Exchange features aggressive, arbitrary moderation and is hostile to discussion. The below is some of my deleted content. (One good thing about the site is at least you can still access your own writing after they delete it):

Utilitarianism doesn't make sense. What Utilitarians should do is change their mind.

They want to promote the greatest good to the greatest number, or something like that. But how do you calculate how much good any given thing is in order to make decisions? Utilitarianism doesn't offer a viable way to calculate this, so utilitarianism doesn't actually give any clear indication about which actions to take or not take.

Instead the way utilitarianism works is people want to take some action (first) and then (second) make vague appeals to it being good for lots of people.

Also, people aren't all equal. The programmers who worked on the iPhone matter more than some guy serving burgers. They make a bigger difference in the world and help way more people. They are better at thinking and learning and problem solving. They're more logical and rational. They're on average more moral people who'd be easier to cooperate productively with. Take your pick of criteria and iPhone programmers will tend to beat burger servers.

(There are many breeds of Utilitarianism. If you pick one and ask a question providing some detailed claims about how it works, then I could comment on those specific claims. I think you'd want to submit this as a new question on the site. If I don't see it you can email me [email protected]curi.us with a link to it.)

Elliot Temple on June 11, 2016

Comments (30)

>The programmers who worked on the iPhone matter more than some guy serving burgers.
do you mean app developers or the ones writing the OS?

at least burger servers aren't writing non-free software.

Anonymous at 9:32 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5837
i meant the people at Apple making the iphone. but most app developers are way better than burger flippers too.

sounds like you hate capitalism, profit, trade, prices, money, etc, and don't care to argue your case.

curi at 9:44 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5838
sounds like you like to make wide sweeping assumptions without argument. why would anyone want to talk to you when you antagonize everyone the first chance you can?

Anonymous at 9:52 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5839
why are you here? you just come and insult anyone who charges money for software, then you're mad you didn't make a good first impression and sound anti-capitalist!?

Anonymous at 9:58 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5840
>why would anyone want to talk to you when you antagonize everyone the first chance you can?

Maybe you could ask some of the many people that do in fact talk with curi

Mysterious J at 9:59 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5841
play nice J. he brought it up. just tell him!

Anonymous at 10:00 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5842
>Maybe you could ask some of the many people that do in fact talk with curi

you mean the congregation? you don't even need to ask them. the replies can be guessed with high accuracy just by reading FI logs.

Anonymous at 10:06 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5843
he's an existing hater who hated us before this thread started (for reasons he isn't willing to have a critical discussion about), and he was lying by pretending the reply about was the problem.

he stalks FI list while dehumanizing its members. ewww!

Anonymous at 10:13 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5844
i meant: reply above

Anonymous at 10:13 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5845
how else would you start an open discussion about FI problems? FI itself is censored.

Anonymous at 10:21 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5846
no active FI posters are on moderation.

you could have started by honestly saying you think FI has some problem and saying what it is. rather than with a wisecrack about software pricing followed by a wisecrack about congregations.

you could still do that. preferably in a relevant open thread instead of where it's off topic.

Anonymous at 10:24 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5847
why would someone want to spend time making a thread on the chance it's allowed by a mod?

Anonymous at 10:27 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5848
maybe you could make a thread and ask them that :)

but i think the mods might not allow it :(

Anonymous at 10:33 AM on June 11, 2016 | #5849
> why would someone want to spend time making a thread on the chance it's allowed by a mod?

Cuz if you think FI sux you should already know why FI sux. Even if you don't already have your reason written down, you should know it clearly in your head. Right? Not a lot of new thought needed if you've already reached the conclusion.

So making a thread with your reason should be easy and cheap to do.

And if it's then mod'd, you can post elsewhere what your criticism is AND the fact that it was mod'd, improving your case that FI sux.

And if it's not mod'd, you might persuade people that FI actually does suck. Or at least they'll be on notice of whatever problem you think FI has.

Or someone might reply to your criticisms and you might change your mind about FI sucking.

Seems pretty low risk.

PAS at 1:10 PM on June 11, 2016 | #5850
PAS, that person was talking about making a thread on the philosophy stack exchange. on FI or this blog there aren't mods picking and choosing to allow specific threads.

i agree that blogging what you wrote on your own blog PLUS the fact it was modded is a good strategy if that happens. then if it ever comes up again you can just link your own blog. ez and clear.

Anonymous at 4:13 PM on June 11, 2016 | #5851
>most app developers are way better than burger flippers too

what do you mean here by 'better'?

do you mean of more value to the world at large or do you mean worth more money? do these 2 things always coincide?

mb when you say they're 'better', you mean they *think* better and this is why they'll create more value for the world and their families than people who decide to flip burgers?

anonymous at 12:57 AM on June 12, 2016 | #5852
>PAS, that person was talking about making a thread on the philosophy stack exchange. on FI or this blog there aren't mods picking and choosing to allow specific threads.

plenty of posts dont arrive on FI after they are sent. plenty of things are filtered out. the fact that this has come up before and people can be banned when they do things mods dont like is pretty damning. and yet mentioning any of this in the only possible place one can reasonably expect posts to arrive (i assume some nasty ones would still get deleted), on a tangent to a misunderstanding, the entire criticism gets misconstrued into an entirely different matter. i dont know if this is congnitive dissonance at work or plain arrogance or simple manipulation.

PS: you can help make the comments section more coherent by adding post numbers for references.

Anonymous at 6:28 AM on June 12, 2016 | #5853
> plenty of posts dont arrive on FI after they are sent

wtf are you talking about? yahoo groups bug? if some posts aren't being received please report it. i've seen a few were delayed a couple hours recently but i don't know of any actually missing.

comments have numbers. yours is #5853. mouse over the permalink: http://curi.us/comments/show/5853

Anonymous at 6:41 AM on June 12, 2016 | #5854
over the last year or so i've posted at least 5 times from temp mail accounts where there was no bounce-back or anything. other than that some that have arrived took anywhere from minutes to hours. yahoo is a joke but i doubt it's consistently that bad.

for the record, in the past i have asked some people why they dont post their stuff to FI and they mainly refuse because they dont want to deal with badly run mailing lists with questionable moderation.

>comments have numbers

what i had in mind was the numbers visible like the date so they can be found using browser search. or have your blogging stack auto generate the links.

Anonymous at 8:19 AM on June 12, 2016 | #5855

Utilitarianism

Hey,
So I was looking over your profile from Philosophy.SE. I found my way here. Could I suggest reading into John Stewart Mill and Jeremey Bentham about Utilitarianism. You might find it interesting that the topic of quantifying utility is a very well discussed topic. Early critics said exactly as you did, that without a regime of calculating Utility, Utilitarianism is arbitrary at best. However, Mill introduces a unit of measure, referred to as a util (pronounced *you-til*). From there you different schools of thought on the best way to manage the quantification and maximization methods; such as "Act" and "Rule" Utilitarianism. I hope that helps.

alampert22 at 1:37 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5856
people are welcome to contact me about technical problems and we can sort them out. if you do it at the time and give me details i can look at yahoo's log info and might be able to tell you what happened. it could be user error such as failing to sign up to the list successfully before posting. tech problems are solvable.

yahoo is working OK currently. all the active posters would contact me if their posts weren't going through. it had problems for a few months in the past which is why we have the google group mirror which people can use if they are having an issue.

if you really don't like yahoo you can also post here: http://www.curi.us/1785-fallible-ideas-unformatted

if that was unsuitable for some reason you could request a new open thread.

none of this has anything to do with moderation. technical glitches are not caused by mean moderators.

as to moderation, there are a couple banned users. they did very bad things and are unwilling/unable to solve the problem(s). discussion of these policies is welcome. if you think i made a mistake, you may argue your case on the list.

i will consider making the comment number visible and making text like #5853 automatically turn into a link.

curi at 4:46 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5859
suggestions for better forums are also welcome. i've looked at some in the past. i didn't find something worth switching to.

Anonymous at 4:47 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5860
@alampert22 if you want to make a particular argument regarding utilitarianism, go ahead, and we can discuss that one. it can be from Mill rather than original, and you can use quotes, whatever. i'm aware literature like that exists. i'll discuss particular arguments but i don't really have a reply to "there's a bunch of arguments against your position out there". yeah there are. pick one of interest at a time and we can discuss, if you want to discuss.

curi at 4:48 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5861
testing comment number automatic links: #5859

the format is you write a pound sign (#) and then the comment number. put whitespace before and after (start/end of comment works too. also @ works before and .!? work after)

curi at 5:14 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5865
testing again: #5837

they won't work with comments from other posts.

curi at 5:20 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5866
#5837

test @#5837!

test @#5837.

test @#5837?

test #5837

Anonymous at 5:21 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5867

Anonymous at 5:33 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5869
having multiple in a row messed up the regex. cuz the regex eats one character before and after. should work if you double space them. let's see:

#5865 #5865 #5865

Anonymous at 5:34 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5870
i now run the regex replace 5 times in a row. so that'll get most cases of writing several in a row to work correctly. should be good enough.

Anonymous at 5:38 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5871
FYI:

def add_comment_number_links(s)
re = %r{([\[email protected]]|^)#(\d+)([\s\.\?!]|$)}
# replace = '\1<a href="http://curi.us/comments/show/\2">#\2</a>\3'

replace = "\\1<a href='http://curi.us/#{self.post.permalink_id}#c\\2'>#\\2</a>\\3"

s = s.gsub(re, replace)
s = s.gsub(re, replace)
s = s.gsub(re, replace)
s = s.gsub(re, replace)
s = s.gsub(re, replace)

# repeating will get the case of ppl writing several comment numbers in a row with single space between
s
end

Anonymous at 5:56 PM on June 12, 2016 | #5872

What do you think?

(This is a free speech zone!)