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Re: rights v. power struggles

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  • thekoba@aztec.asu.edu
    ... They you would be saying there is enforcement. ... No, that implies no such thing. If you insist it does you are using the word rights in a manner
    Message 1 of 24 , Dec 14 5:36 PM
      >
      >--- In azsecularhumanists@yahoogroups.com, thekoba@a... wrote:
      >> >No...ENFORCEMENT of rights are very often dependent upon power
      >> >struggles. Rights themselves are not.
      >>
      >> If there is no enforcement of rights, there are no rights.
      >
      >We seem to be going in circles. A right exists whether it's
      >enforced/observed or not. Using the right of way example, consider
      >the situation where there's no enforcement at a particular traffic
      >light (ie no police around). This does not mean that no right of way
      >exists. If you violate the right of way, the chance of getting in an
      >accident is higher than if you do not violate it. In that sense,
      >nature enforces its own consequences for the violation of rights.

      They you would be saying there is enforcement.

      >> >This discussion started with the quote, "There are no rights, only
      >> >power struggles" which strongly implies otherwise, ie that whoever
      >> >obtains power is, definitionally, "right" in what they do.
      >>
      >> It implies no such thing. It simply implies that power struggles
      >> determine the norms of human interaction.
      >
      >Sorry, but to me the phrase "there are no rights..." means there is
      >no right way to treat another human being, only the whim of whoever
      >is in power.

      No, that implies no such thing. If you insist it does you are using
      the word "rights" in a manner inconsistent with the common usage in
      the language, and that only confuses people.

      >> >> As indicated below, you [Jason] evidently believe that
      >> >> there are some circumstances in which a greater good can justify
      >> >> the violation of a right (e.g. the transport of a gravely injured
      >> >> person through a red light).
      >> >
      >> >Yes...just don't confuse violation of a right with the non-
      >existance
      >> >of that right.
      >>
      >> If you believe a violation would be justified, as evidently you do,
      >> then it is not a right. It is simply a rule that works well MOST
      >> OF THE TIME.
      >
      >You seem to persist in the thinking that for something to be a right
      >it must never be violated. A right is simply a rule we are better
      >off with than without. Of course there are going to be times when
      >people violate rights...and sometimes those violations are acceptable
      >because more important rights are involved.

      None of the rules you have proposed is always valid. Therefore I
      contend there are no rights. Sometimes the violation of a right
      of way is justified by a higher good. Thus so is the killing of a
      human being often justified by a higher good.

      It is different to say "Every human being has the right to life."
      and "Generally speaking killing human beings is a bad thing, but
      there are times when it is to the greater good of other human beings
      that it be done."

      >> >Non-transferrability is
      >> >entirely consistent with the conception of rights as rules of
      >human
      >> >conduct. I don't see how any of what we have discussed implies
      >that
      >> >all rights must be transferrable.
      >>
      >> Inalienable does mean that, but it also means that they can't be
      >taken
      >> away. Does the person who is condemned to death have the right to
      >life?
      >> Maybe you would think so if you are against capital punishment.
      >
      >This gets a little more into the attributes of the specifc natural
      >right not to be killed than is apt to be useful to someone who thinks
      >there is no such thing. I would argue that the attributes of the
      >right not to be killed are such that the right can be forfeit by one
      >who is engaged in the conscious act/attempt of violating another's
      >right not to be killed, or has previously violated the same.

      That being the case those who have knowingly profited from acts which
      have killed large numbers of human beings and have done nothing to
      stop it, rather actually encouraged it, would forfeit their "right
      to life". I contend that is the case with most of those in the WTC.

      >> >What is arbitrary about "right of way" is under what
      >> >circumstances you have the right of way and what circumstances you
      >> >don't have it. I would argue that it is _not_ arbitrary when you
      >> >have a right not to be killed, and when you don't. That is the
      >> >difference between the two.
      >>
      >> I would not say there is a difference between the two. Generally
      >> speaking killing others is not good for society, but there are times
      >> when it is.
      >
      >And I would argue that those times are determined by the nature of
      >man and the physical universe, not by the whims of whoever is in
      >power.

      There I would agree.

      >> >Thousands of rapes happen every year. I believe that it is
      >> >impossible to totally prevent rape from ever occurring. Does that
      >> >mean that it is an anti-materialist position to be "anti-rape"? I
      >> >argue that it does not. Like being anti-rape, being anti-war
      >means
      >> >that I don't personally engage in it, and that I attempt to
      >> >discourage others from engaging in it.
      >>
      >> Within a society there are practical means to discourage rape, so it
      >> is materialist to be anti-rape, as one can mitigate it even if it is
      >> not possible to eliminate it. Do I say then that we cannot possibly
      >> reduce the number of wars? We can, but ironically the only way to
      >do
      >> that is to fight the class war to overthrow the imperialist
      >bourgeoisie.
      >
      >Well, then I'd say we agree that it is materialist to be anti-
      >war...we just disagree on the means to achieve it.
      >
      >> As Mao Zedong said, "To put down the gun, we must first pick it up."
      >> I don't see resisting war, no matter what kind of a war it is and
      >> no matter who wants to fight it, as a practical way of mitigating
      >war.
      >> If someone in the imperialist countries wants to do that, that
      >person
      >> is my ally, because it will hinder the war effort by the
      >imperialists.
      >> Nonetheless I would not take that position with those who would
      >hinder
      >> the war effort by those who seek to overthrow imperialism.
      >
      >Now perhaps you see why I don't consider us allies. You simply want
      >different people to control the U.S. government and the world by
      >force of arms -- a "Pax Communista" instead of a "Pax Americana".
      >Our goals bear about as much resemblence as a broken clock does to
      >the time: Sure, they're in sync twice a day...but that fact is of
      >little use.
      >
      >--Jason Auvenshine

      Our long-term goals are very different, but our immediate goal is
      the same--to hinder the American effort to make war. That makes us
      allies, however temporary the alliance. It is of great use now,
      and for as long as American aggression lasts.

      --Kevin
    • auvenj <auvenj@mailcity.com>
      ... only ... whoever ... is ... whoever ... From www.dictionary.com, the definition of right in the context we are discussing is: 2. That to which one has a
      Message 2 of 24 , Dec 15 4:30 PM
        --- In azsecularhumanists@yahoogroups.com, thekoba@a... wrote:
        > >> >This discussion started with the quote, "There are no rights,
        only
        > >> >power struggles" which strongly implies otherwise, ie that
        whoever
        > >> >obtains power is, definitionally, "right" in what they do.
        > >>
        > >> It implies no such thing. It simply implies that power struggles
        > >> determine the norms of human interaction.
        > >
        > >Sorry, but to me the phrase "there are no rights..." means there
        is
        > >no right way to treat another human being, only the whim of
        whoever
        > >is in power.
        >
        > No, that implies no such thing. If you insist it does you are using
        > the word "rights" in a manner inconsistent with the common usage in
        > the language, and that only confuses people.

        From www.dictionary.com, the definition of right in the context we
        are discussing is:

        2. That to which one has a just claim. Specifically:
        (a) That which one has a natural claim to exact. There are no
        rights whatever, without corresponding duties. --Coleridge.
        (b) That which one has a legal or social claim to do or to exact;
        legal power; authority; as, a sheriff has a right to arrest a
        criminal.
        (c) That which justly belongs to one; that which one has a claim to
        possess or own; the interest or share which anyone has in a piece of
        property; title; claim; interest; ownership. Born free, he sought his
        right. --Dryden. Hast thou not right to all created things? --
        Milton. Men have no right to what is not reasonable. --Burke.
        (d) Privilege or immunity granted by authority.

        While I have some problems with this definition, and I'm sure you do
        too...it is clear that if you say "There are no rights..." you are
        saying that there is nothing to which a human being has just claim.

        > None of the rules you have proposed is always valid. Therefore I
        > contend there are no rights. Sometimes the violation of a right
        > of way is justified by a higher good. Thus so is the killing of a
        > human being often justified by a higher good.
        >
        > It is different to say "Every human being has the right to life."
        > and "Generally speaking killing human beings is a bad thing, but
        > there are times when it is to the greater good of other human beings
        > that it be done."

        To some extent the confusion is perhaps due to some sloppiness on my
        part. Let me try to clear things up in regards to the "right not to
        be killed." At times, I may have referred to this in a more lengthy
        and complete form, "the right of peaceful people not to be killed."

        If an individual initiates an unprovoked attack against me with a
        deadly weapon (say, a mugger with a gun) and I kill him in what would
        commonly be termed self defense, have I violated the mugger's right
        not to be killed? No. The mugger forfeited his right not to be
        killed by engaging in an act of deadly aggression against another.
        He no longer qualifies as "peaceful".

        Now, suppose I use a gun in defending myself against the mugger and
        one of the bullets I fire at the mugger hits him, exits his body and
        strikes and kills a woman standing behind the mugger. Have I
        violated the woman's right not to be killed? YES. Is my action
        resulting in her death likely to be considered justified? I'm no
        lawyer, but my understanding is that it would be considered justified
        in the sense that it was the consequence of a criminal act by the
        mugger, not by me. In other words, the mugger is responsible for
        putting me in the situation of having to kill him to protect my own
        life, and he is therefore at fault for my bullet unintentionally
        striking the woman even though he didn't personally fire it.

        The point of this little thought exercise is the following:
        Sometimes, an individual takes actions which forfeit his/her right
        not to be killed, at which point killing that person does not
        constitute violating the right. Also, unintentionally violating the
        right not to be killed may also be justified in certain situations.
        However, neither of those facts implies that intentionally targeting
        peaceful individuals for death is ever justified.

        > >This gets a little more into the attributes of the specifc natural
        > >right not to be killed than is apt to be useful to someone who
        thinks
        > >there is no such thing. I would argue that the attributes of the
        > >right not to be killed are such that the right can be forfeit by
        one
        > >who is engaged in the conscious act/attempt of violating another's
        > >right not to be killed, or has previously violated the same.
        >
        > That being the case those who have knowingly profited from acts
        which
        > have killed large numbers of human beings and have done nothing to
        > stop it, rather actually encouraged it, would forfeit their "right
        > to life". I contend that is the case with most of those in the WTC.

        Then I think our difference of opinion is not about the existance and
        validity of a right not to be killed/"right to life", rather our
        disagreement concerns the conditions under which an individual has
        forfeit that right.

        --Jason Auvenshine
      • thekoba@aztec.asu.edu
        ... Only that privilege or immunity granted by authority can be taken away by that authority and that what is perceived to be a legal claim can be ruled
        Message 3 of 24 , Dec 15 5:03 PM
          >
          >--- In azsecularhumanists@yahoogroups.com, thekoba@a... wrote:
          >> >> >This discussion started with the quote, "There are no rights,
          >only
          >> >> >power struggles" which strongly implies otherwise, ie that
          >whoever
          >> >> >obtains power is, definitionally, "right" in what they do.
          >> >>
          >> >> It implies no such thing. It simply implies that power struggles
          >> >> determine the norms of human interaction.
          >> >
          >> >Sorry, but to me the phrase "there are no rights..." means there
          >is
          >> >no right way to treat another human being, only the whim of
          >whoever
          >> >is in power.
          >>
          >> No, that implies no such thing. If you insist it does you are using
          >> the word "rights" in a manner inconsistent with the common usage in
          >> the language, and that only confuses people.
          >
          >From www.dictionary.com, the definition of right in the context we
          >are discussing is:
          >
          >2. That to which one has a just claim. Specifically:
          > (a) That which one has a natural claim to exact. There are no
          >rights whatever, without corresponding duties. --Coleridge.
          > (b) That which one has a legal or social claim to do or to exact;
          >legal power; authority; as, a sheriff has a right to arrest a
          >criminal.
          > (c) That which justly belongs to one; that which one has a claim to
          >possess or own; the interest or share which anyone has in a piece of
          >property; title; claim; interest; ownership. Born free, he sought his
          >right. --Dryden. Hast thou not right to all created things? --
          >Milton. Men have no right to what is not reasonable. --Burke.
          > (d) Privilege or immunity granted by authority.
          >
          >While I have some problems with this definition, and I'm sure you do
          >too...it is clear that if you say "There are no rights..." you are
          >saying that there is nothing to which a human being has just claim.

          Only that privilege or immunity granted by authority can be taken away
          by that authority and that what is perceived to be a legal claim can
          be ruled otherwise. I'm sure that's what Mao Zedong meant when he
          said, "There are no rights, only power struggles."

          >> None of the rules you have proposed is always valid. Therefore I
          >> contend there are no rights. Sometimes the violation of a right
          >> of way is justified by a higher good. Thus so is the killing of a
          >> human being often justified by a higher good.
          >>
          >> It is different to say "Every human being has the right to life."
          >> and "Generally speaking killing human beings is a bad thing, but
          >> there are times when it is to the greater good of other human beings
          >> that it be done."
          >
          >To some extent the confusion is perhaps due to some sloppiness on my
          >part. Let me try to clear things up in regards to the "right not to
          >be killed." At times, I may have referred to this in a more lengthy
          >and complete form, "the right of peaceful people not to be killed."
          >
          >If an individual initiates an unprovoked attack against me with a
          >deadly weapon (say, a mugger with a gun) and I kill him in what would
          >commonly be termed self defense, have I violated the mugger's right
          >not to be killed? No. The mugger forfeited his right not to be
          >killed by engaging in an act of deadly aggression against another.
          >He no longer qualifies as "peaceful".
          >
          >Now, suppose I use a gun in defending myself against the mugger and
          >one of the bullets I fire at the mugger hits him, exits his body and
          >strikes and kills a woman standing behind the mugger. Have I
          >violated the woman's right not to be killed? YES. Is my action
          >resulting in her death likely to be considered justified? I'm no
          >lawyer, but my understanding is that it would be considered justified
          >in the sense that it was the consequence of a criminal act by the
          >mugger, not by me. In other words, the mugger is responsible for
          >putting me in the situation of having to kill him to protect my own
          >life, and he is therefore at fault for my bullet unintentionally
          >striking the woman even though he didn't personally fire it.

          This is the concept of collateral damage.

          >The point of this little thought exercise is the following:
          >Sometimes, an individual takes actions which forfeit his/her right
          >not to be killed, at which point killing that person does not
          >constitute violating the right. Also, unintentionally violating the
          >right not to be killed may also be justified in certain situations.
          >However, neither of those facts implies that intentionally targeting
          >peaceful individuals for death is ever justified.

          No, it does not imply that, but I would nonetheless contend that there
          are times when it is for the greater good of humanity to intentionally
          target peaceful individuals for death. If, however pure the intentions
          of these people, their actions or existence aids a great threat to
          humanity, I would say it is better to kill them than leave them be.

          >> >This gets a little more into the attributes of the specifc natural
          >> >right not to be killed than is apt to be useful to someone who
          >thinks
          >> >there is no such thing. I would argue that the attributes of the
          >> >right not to be killed are such that the right can be forfeit by
          >one
          >> >who is engaged in the conscious act/attempt of violating another's
          >> >right not to be killed, or has previously violated the same.
          >>
          >> That being the case those who have knowingly profited from acts
          >which
          >> have killed large numbers of human beings and have done nothing to
          >> stop it, rather actually encouraged it, would forfeit their "right
          >> to life". I contend that is the case with most of those in the WTC.
          >
          >Then I think our difference of opinion is not about the existance and
          >validity of a right not to be killed/"right to life", rather our
          >disagreement concerns the conditions under which an individual has
          >forfeit that right.
          >
          >--Jason Auvenshine

          That is one of our disagreements, but not the only one. I would say
          that a person with good intentions who objectively is harmful to humanity
          should be killed.

          --Kevin
        • auvenj <auvenj@mailcity.com>
          ... away ... So you are claiming that Mao was only talking about government granted rights when he stated There are no rights... ? That seems unlikely, given
          Message 4 of 24 , Dec 17 1:30 PM
            --- In azsecularhumanists@yahoogroups.com, thekoba@a... wrote:
            > Only that privilege or immunity granted by authority can be taken
            away
            > by that authority and that what is perceived to be a legal claim can
            > be ruled otherwise. I'm sure that's what Mao Zedong meant when he
            > said, "There are no rights, only power struggles."

            So you are claiming that Mao was only talking about government
            granted rights when he stated "There are no rights..."? That seems
            unlikely, given the common objection to Communism that it infringes
            on natural rights. It seems to me more likely that Mao was saying
            that there are no rights (including natural rights) other than those
            granted as a result of a power struggle (by government). This is the
            position I have been attacking as unreasonable.

            Certainly I'd agree that government doesn't do anything without a
            power struggle, including granting rights. All I have been saying is
            that there are certain rights that arise from man's nature and
            physical reality -- rights that greatly affect human well-being and
            preceed and exist independant of whether or not a particular
            government grants/recognizes/enforces them.

            > No, it does not imply that, but I would nonetheless contend that
            there
            > are times when it is for the greater good of humanity to
            intentionally
            > target peaceful individuals for death. If, however pure the
            intentions
            > of these people, their actions or existence aids a great threat to
            > humanity, I would say it is better to kill them than leave them be.

            What if one considers, as I do, the killing of peaceful individuals
            to itself be one of the greatest threats facing humanity?

            > >Then I think our difference of opinion is not about the existance
            and
            > >validity of a right not to be killed/"right to life", rather our
            > >disagreement concerns the conditions under which an individual has
            > >forfeit that right.
            >
            > That is one of our disagreements, but not the only one. I would say
            > that a person with good intentions who objectively is harmful to
            humanity
            > should be killed.

            I believe the evidence of history shows that a person is objectively
            harmful to humanity only when that person infringes upon the rights
            of others.

            --Jason Auvenshine
          • thekoba@aztec.asu.edu
            ... The mere fact that it is a common objection does not mean it is a truthful objection. ... The context of the essay in which Mao said this is that we must
            Message 5 of 24 , Dec 17 9:00 PM
              >
              >--- In azsecularhumanists@yahoogroups.com, thekoba@a... wrote:
              >> Only that privilege or immunity granted by authority can be taken
              >away
              >> by that authority and that what is perceived to be a legal claim can
              >> be ruled otherwise. I'm sure that's what Mao Zedong meant when he
              >> said, "There are no rights, only power struggles."
              >
              >So you are claiming that Mao was only talking about government
              >granted rights when he stated "There are no rights..."? That seems
              >unlikely, given the common objection to Communism that it infringes
              >on natural rights.

              The mere fact that it is a common objection does not mean it is a
              truthful objection.

              >It seems to me more likely that Mao was saying
              >that there are no rights (including natural rights) other than those
              >granted as a result of a power struggle (by government). This is the
              >position I have been attacking as unreasonable.

              The context of the essay in which Mao said this is that we must
              struggle for any gains we hope to have in our condition and cannot
              expect governments to recoginze our having rights (natural, legal,
              or otherwise).

              >Certainly I'd agree that government doesn't do anything without a
              >power struggle, including granting rights. All I have been saying is
              >that there are certain rights that arise from man's nature and
              >physical reality -- rights that greatly affect human well-being and
              >preceed and exist independant of whether or not a particular
              >government grants/recognizes/enforces them.
              >
              >> No, it does not imply that, but I would nonetheless contend that
              >there
              >> are times when it is for the greater good of humanity to
              >intentionally
              >> target peaceful individuals for death. If, however pure the
              >intentions
              >> of these people, their actions or existence aids a great threat to
              >> humanity, I would say it is better to kill them than leave them be.
              >
              >What if one considers, as I do, the killing of peaceful individuals
              >to itself be one of the greatest threats facing humanity?
              >
              >> >Then I think our difference of opinion is not about the existance
              >and
              >> >validity of a right not to be killed/"right to life", rather our
              >> >disagreement concerns the conditions under which an individual has
              >> >forfeit that right.
              >>
              >> That is one of our disagreements, but not the only one. I would say
              >> that a person with good intentions who objectively is harmful to
              >humanity
              >> should be killed.
              >
              >I believe the evidence of history shows that a person is objectively
              >harmful to humanity only when that person infringes upon the rights
              >of others.
              >
              >--Jason Auvenshine

              That is a tautology, as you believe that by harming humanity, that person
              infringes on rights. I would conclude, that one may not intentionally
              infringe on rights to be a menace. The Jewish children blown up in
              the martyrdoms in Tel-Aviv are doubtless without malice. Nonetheless they
              are future generations who will serve as soldiers of Zionism, and killing
              them while young is as valid as killing them while old.

              --Kevin
            • auvenj <auvenj@mailcity.com>
              ... objectively ... rights ... person ... intentionally ... Nonetheless they ... killing ... You are correct, it is a tautology as stated. What I left out was
              Message 6 of 24 , Dec 20 10:42 PM
                --- In azsecularhumanists@yahoogroups.com, thekoba@a... wrote:
                > >I believe the evidence of history shows that a person is
                objectively
                > >harmful to humanity only when that person infringes upon the
                rights
                > >of others.
                > >
                > >--Jason Auvenshine
                >
                > That is a tautology, as you believe that by harming humanity, that
                person
                > infringes on rights. I would conclude, that one may not
                intentionally
                > infringe on rights to be a menace. The Jewish children blown up in
                > the martyrdoms in Tel-Aviv are doubtless without malice.
                Nonetheless they
                > are future generations who will serve as soldiers of Zionism, and
                killing
                > them while young is as valid as killing them while old.

                You are correct, it is a tautology as stated. What I left out was
                the definition of specific right(s) in question.

                So, let me rephrase the statement with a specific right for our
                discussion:
                The evidence of history shows that a person is always objectively
                harmful to humanity if that person infringes upon the right of
                another peaceful human being not to be killed.

                Based on your paragraph above, I assume it would be fair to state
                your position as the opposite:
                The evidence of history shows that a person is not always objectively
                harmful to humanity if that person infringes upon the right of
                another peaceful human being not to be killed.

                For the sake of argument, let's examine your statement about Jewish
                children, ie that they will grow up to be "soldiers of Zion" whose
                operational defintion will be "a bad thing for humanity."

                The future is not predictable with certainty. It's possible that
                some of the Jewish children would grow up and be peace activists.
                Maybe a libertarian, or a communist, or an islamist. All of these
                things are possible, but of course you would say that becoming
                a "soldier of Zion" is the most likely outcome for a Jewish child, a
                claim which I cannot dispute. So let's assume that the probability
                is high.

                Humans are fallible. The most immediate possible fallacy is that the
                children in the blast radius might not all be Jewish. But again, the
                probability of them being Jewish is pretty high given the target area.

                So...the suicide bombers are with a high probability killing children
                who would otherwise grow up to be something we have defined for sake
                of argument as objectively harmful to humanity. Does this establish
                that the killings are objectively beneficial? Not by a long shot.

                Rights address how societies function -- the interaction between many
                human beings. Thus far we have considered only the Jewish children
                and the suicide bombers. How are the parents, siblings, and friends
                of the Jewish children likely to react to the situation? By becoming
                MORE violent, not less. This is the "escalation" factor I mentioned
                in a previous message. For every Jewish child killed by a suicide
                bomber, the family and friends are apt to attempt/support retaliatory
                actions that would result in a far greater number of Palestinians
                being killed.

                You may of course point out that the suicide bombings are only
                happening because the Israeli army is _already_ killing Palestinian
                children, both directly and indirectly. This would be correct, but
                it makes rather than refutes my point. Violence begets more and
                greater violence. I do not excuse violence initiated by Isreal (or
                the U.S.) and realize that much of what goes on currently is simply
                backlash. Are the Isrealis objectively better off for having killed
                Palestinian children? No. Are the Palestinians objectively better
                off for having killed Isreali children? Again, no. Not because
                they're not actually taking out likely soldiers for the other
                side...they are. But because they are continuing in a cycle of
                violence which, if unchecked, will result in massive bloodshed,
                destruction, and death on both sides until one side or the other is
                utterly vanquished.

                This ever-growing "backlash" for killing is one of the things that
                makes it objectively harmful to do so even when the person being
                killed is presumed to be objectively harmful but currently peaceful.

                The other reason why killing an objectively harmful, but currently
                peaceful person is itself objectively harmful is desensitization.
                History and human psychology tends to indicate that the more one
                engages in (in this case, orders) killing, the more indiscriminate
                one becomes about it. Thus, over time, we could expect those
                ordering the killings to get sloppy with their assessments about who
                is objectively harmful, and start killing peole who were simply a
                threat to their political power and such.

                --Jason Auvenshine
              • thekoba@aztec.asu.edu
                ... Of course violence begets violence. It cannot be otherwise in war. It will end when one side or the other decides to give up. Since the imperialists need
                Message 7 of 24 , Dec 21 4:31 PM
                  >
                  >--- In azsecularhumanists@yahoogroups.com, thekoba@a... wrote:
                  >> >I believe the evidence of history shows that a person is
                  >objectively
                  >> >harmful to humanity only when that person infringes upon the
                  >rights
                  >> >of others.
                  >> >
                  >> >--Jason Auvenshine
                  >>
                  >> That is a tautology, as you believe that by harming humanity, that
                  >person
                  >> infringes on rights. I would conclude, that one may not
                  >intentionally
                  >> infringe on rights to be a menace. The Jewish children blown up in
                  >> the martyrdoms in Tel-Aviv are doubtless without malice.
                  >Nonetheless they
                  >> are future generations who will serve as soldiers of Zionism, and
                  >killing
                  >> them while young is as valid as killing them while old.
                  >
                  >You are correct, it is a tautology as stated. What I left out was
                  >the definition of specific right(s) in question.
                  >
                  >So, let me rephrase the statement with a specific right for our
                  >discussion:
                  >The evidence of history shows that a person is always objectively
                  >harmful to humanity if that person infringes upon the right of
                  >another peaceful human being not to be killed.
                  >
                  >Based on your paragraph above, I assume it would be fair to state
                  >your position as the opposite:
                  >The evidence of history shows that a person is not always objectively
                  >harmful to humanity if that person infringes upon the right of
                  >another peaceful human being not to be killed.
                  >
                  >For the sake of argument, let's examine your statement about Jewish
                  >children, ie that they will grow up to be "soldiers of Zion" whose
                  >operational defintion will be "a bad thing for humanity."
                  >
                  >The future is not predictable with certainty. It's possible that
                  >some of the Jewish children would grow up and be peace activists.
                  >Maybe a libertarian, or a communist, or an islamist. All of these
                  >things are possible, but of course you would say that becoming
                  >a "soldier of Zion" is the most likely outcome for a Jewish child, a
                  >claim which I cannot dispute. So let's assume that the probability
                  >is high.
                  >
                  >Humans are fallible. The most immediate possible fallacy is that the
                  >children in the blast radius might not all be Jewish. But again, the
                  >probability of them being Jewish is pretty high given the target area.
                  >
                  >So...the suicide bombers are with a high probability killing children
                  >who would otherwise grow up to be something we have defined for sake
                  >of argument as objectively harmful to humanity. Does this establish
                  >that the killings are objectively beneficial? Not by a long shot.
                  >
                  >Rights address how societies function -- the interaction between many
                  >human beings. Thus far we have considered only the Jewish children
                  >and the suicide bombers. How are the parents, siblings, and friends
                  >of the Jewish children likely to react to the situation? By becoming
                  >MORE violent, not less. This is the "escalation" factor I mentioned
                  >in a previous message. For every Jewish child killed by a suicide
                  >bomber, the family and friends are apt to attempt/support retaliatory
                  >actions that would result in a far greater number of Palestinians
                  >being killed.
                  >
                  >You may of course point out that the suicide bombings are only
                  >happening because the Israeli army is _already_ killing Palestinian
                  >children, both directly and indirectly. This would be correct, but
                  >it makes rather than refutes my point. Violence begets more and
                  >greater violence. I do not excuse violence initiated by Isreal (or
                  >the U.S.) and realize that much of what goes on currently is simply
                  >backlash. Are the Isrealis objectively better off for having killed
                  >Palestinian children? No. Are the Palestinians objectively better
                  >off for having killed Isreali children? Again, no. Not because
                  >they're not actually taking out likely soldiers for the other
                  >side...they are. But because they are continuing in a cycle of
                  >violence which, if unchecked, will result in massive bloodshed,
                  >destruction, and death on both sides until one side or the other is
                  >utterly vanquished.
                  >
                  >This ever-growing "backlash" for killing is one of the things that
                  >makes it objectively harmful to do so even when the person being
                  >killed is presumed to be objectively harmful but currently peaceful.
                  >
                  >The other reason why killing an objectively harmful, but currently
                  >peaceful person is itself objectively harmful is desensitization.
                  >History and human psychology tends to indicate that the more one
                  >engages in (in this case, orders) killing, the more indiscriminate
                  >one becomes about it. Thus, over time, we could expect those
                  >ordering the killings to get sloppy with their assessments about who
                  >is objectively harmful, and start killing peole who were simply a
                  >threat to their political power and such.
                  >
                  >--Jason Auvenshine

                  Of course violence begets violence. It cannot be otherwise in war.
                  It will end when one side or the other decides to give up. Since
                  the imperialists need us to do the work for them, they can't kill
                  us all, but since we don't need them, we can kill all of them. Thus
                  it is logical to assume that there will be some Arabs left alive after
                  every Jew is dead, or more likely, that the Zionists will give up the
                  struggle and either return to Europe and North America or agree to
                  live in a united, democratic secular Palestine without economic privilege
                  without having killed all the Palestineans.

                  On the other hand, what is the alternative? Not kill any Jews and suffer
                  their oppression? That is a formula for continuing Zionist oppression,
                  which is not conducive to the happiness of humanity. Kill only soldiers?
                  That will result in a casualty rate lopsided in the favour of the Jews
                  and will cause the defeat of the current struggle. Also soldiers also
                  have loved ones, and when soldiers are killed there is also a call for
                  vengeance and an escallation of violence, so the result will be just
                  as bad for the Palestineans in the long run. Given that Israel practices
                  universal conscription, there isn't much distinctions between soldiers
                  and civilians in that country anyway.

                  --Kevin

                  Roses are red
                  Violets are blue
                  For every dead Arab
                  Another dead Jew

                  --National Alliance chant
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