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WarrsawPact
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Here's a question that's sure to lower the quality of debate around here (but I just have to ask):

Search your soul here and be honest, most of all with yourself:
Who do you feel more sympathy for, the 100-something thousand people killed by the tsunami and 5 million-plus other affected people, or the more than 400,000 people thus far discovered buried in mass graves in Iraq and the tens of millions of people who suffered for many years under Saddam's regime?

How about the millions who die constantly under North Korea's repressive "worker's paradise," and the lucky/unlucky millions who survived them and continue to suffer?

And what are you willing to do, personally -- and to what extent do you believe others must act -- for each of those groups of people? I've turned this question around and asked myself already; I'd like to hear what you guys have to say.

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Everard
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Those killed in southeast asia.
Why?
S different, yet Simple, reasons.

Natural disasters are completely random. I feel more sympathy for those hurt by events beyond human control.

One time events elictit more sympathy then ongoing events. The disaster in southeast asia took place in under a day. The events in north korea, iraq, the congo, and other disasters of economy/government take place over periods of time often measured in decades.

Edit: This is only, of course, the sympathy felt, which is different then the rational processes I use to analyze the events. I feel more symapthy for those in southeast asia... but I worry and spend more time thinking about social and economic and government disasters.

[ January 08, 2005, 08:11 PM: Message edited by: Everard ]

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TomDavidson
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"Who do you feel more sympathy for, the 100-something thousand people killed by the tsunami and 5 million-plus other affected people, or the more than 400,000 people thus far discovered buried in mass graves in Iraq and the tens of millions of people who suffered for many years under Saddam's regime?"

Heck, if you're going to play this game, how bad do you feel about the hundreds of thousands of Americans who die each year because they cannot afford medical treatment? Or the thousands who die because the federal government wasn't more strenuously enforcing seatbelt laws? *rolls eyes*

This kind of emotional calculus is the worst sort of demagoguery.

[ January 08, 2005, 09:21 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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Dagonee
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Or the million-plus unborn children aborted in America every year?
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TomDavidson
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Another excellent example. *nod*
It's senseless to try to ascribe a level of relative importance to a tragedy by number; by that logic, the World Trade Center bombing was laughably inconsequential, and our response ridiculously overwrought.

People respond to tragedy in what are generally very shallow, selfish ways. It's part of how we fit the world into the small box we keep inside our heads.

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WarrsawPact
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Tom -
quote:
Heck, if you're going to play this game, how bad do you feel about the hundreds of thousands of Americans who die each year because they cannot afford medical treatment?
Hundreds of thousands eh? Can't afford it eh? Well that has solutions!
I'll tell you what. I'm willing to sue for Canada and Great Britain and Japan et al to pay their share of R&D costs for the wonderful medical advances they're enjoying at our expense. I'm ready to vote for tort reform and realistic malpractice damage caps.

quote:
Or the thousands who die because the federal government wasn't more strenuously enforcing seatbelt laws?
That's a matter of personal liberty as well. If you have a seatbelt at your ready but choose not to use it, I won't shed any tears for you if that seatbelt doesn't save your life. I'd rather not pay for your cleanup and funeral either, if your assets can cover it.

quote:
This kind of emotional calculus is the worst sort of demagoguery.
Is that your way of not directly answering the question? Who do you feel more sympathy for? People who were systematically tortured, gassed and murdered, and lots more who were oppressed and enjoyed almost none of the freedoms you enjoy today ... or a much smaller number of people who happened to be in the path of a natural disaster?

You couldn't prevent the tsunami.
You do, however, have this chance, now that both the dictator and the tsunami have passed, to do something about it. How far will you go for each?

And as for this being the WORST sort of demagoguery... ha. I could come up with much mroe biting, partisna, emotional material than THAT question.

Dagonee -
I'll reserve that question for when people are in more basic agreement about what constitutes a person. Right now let's stick with the less controversial dichotomy between two sets of post-birth humans.

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TomDavidson
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"And as for this being the WORST sort of demagoguery... ha."

No, really, it is.
You want to know why?

Because once you start walking down this road, you wind up at Omelas.

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WarrsawPact
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Tom -
quote:
It's senseless to try to ascribe a level of relative importance to a tragedy by number; by that logic, the World Trade Center bombing was laughably inconsequential, and our response ridiculously overwrought.
Au contraire. It may be the more sensible option -- especially since I'm not just using numbers here.

I'm not talking eye-for-an-eye here. Consider also the political versus natural causes for the deaths. Americans cared deeply about 9/11 but didn't lift a finger to save 800,000 Rwandans. If Clinton hadn't taken such a PR beating we wouldn't have stopped the Serbian Holocaust-style camps either.

Yet when many tnes of thousands of people in SE Asia die at the hands of a natural event, we suddenyl sympathize. The Asians are no more dead than the Rwandans or Iraqis are. In fact, it could easily be argued the sufferers of the atrocities in such places as North Korea and Cambodia were much worse off than the Indonesians are now.

I'm poking my wandering nose into a very sensitive spot for a lot of Westerners: our practical and moral equivalency.
Eight hundred thousand Rwandans died in 100 days. You'll spend a thousand times the breath on Abu Ghraib as you spent on the hundreds of thousands of people hacked to death with machetes and tossed into rivers in Rwanda.

So, clearly, WHO is doing the killing or harming matters to you. You care if it's Saddam Husein or Kim Jung Il or Hitler or several hundred Hutus or Americans or Osama bin Laden. We've established that. Three thousand people on the eastern seaboard of the US matter more to you than eight hunred thousand central Africans ever will.
The question is, why do you and so many Americans care more for one party than the other? There seem to be a lot of reasons... and this is what I'm getting at.

By the way, I'm guilty of a lot of this too, though I'm examining it critically. I'm trying to whittle it down to practical matters, not moral equivalence, but it takes work after so mny years.

1. natural disasters versus human causes
2. not wanting to get involved in others' politics
3. considering a human being in your in-group (ie, your country) far "more equal" than someone in another country. All men are created equal... but some are more equal than others.
4. criticizing a war against one brutal regime because we can't remove ALL such regimes
5. the antiwarriors: it's okay to help these human beings affected by natural disasters because you don't have to do something ugly like go to war to accomplish it

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Everard
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"or a much smaller number of people who happened to be in the path of a natural disaster?"

Ummm, the tsunami is likely to end up effecting far more people then live in Iraq, Afghanistan, North Korea, Congo, put together. Just because the waves are done, doesn't mean the disaster is over. The estimates on homeless people is almost the entire population of Iraq, and the diseases haven't even started yet.

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TomDavidson
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"I'm poking my wandering nose into a very sensitive spot for a lot of Westerners: our practical and moral equivalency."

It's hardly a uniquely Western phenomenon. [Smile]

And I suspect the single biggest answer to your question is this: we care if it affects us, and we care if it was done to deliberately hurt us, and we care if we're the ones doing it. If it doesn't fall into one of those three categories immediately, we care only if it's portrayed as something exceptional, or if -- to be cynical for a moment -- it's over and all we have to do to "deal" with it is donate money.

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WarrsawPact
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Regarding Omelas - That's a big stretch. Really big. The kind of attacks on unequal sympathy are designed to *raise up* that wretched child, no matter how he got into that room.
John Kennedy was tapping into a very real American drive when he said at his inauguration:
quote:
Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans -— born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage -— and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this Nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today at home and around the world.
Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty.
This much we pledge —- and more.

It's not just a matter of morality; it's the pragmatic thing to do. Our survival depends on it, and the more we look at the global economy and the security threats that remain to our country, the more we realize it. There is in this country even now an aching intolerance for such mistreatment of their fellow man. But there are things holding the floodgates from reaching into those ugly little corners of despotism and mass murder. America simply brims with a vigor to pour our wealth and freedom out, totally voluntarily, to the right cause. I watch it every day where I work, people so used to charity that they do it without hesitation. No self-congratulatory pat on the back, no calls for recognition.

So what separates the people in this country who are interested in bearing any burden and opposing any foe to secure liberty for the throngs of people out there who want it so badly... from the people who don't want to meddle if the problem is caused by other humans -- even the real monsters? People who don't want to help even if the number of people killed is far eclisped by the number of people saved.

Ev - I haven't seen that estimate on the number of homeless. Sri Lanka had ~800k homeless last I saw. And the WFP guys are saying they've got all the food they need there.
Indonesia had an estimated 1 million homeless themselves last I checked.

Where are your numbers from?

Disease may (will) end up being a big deal, but that's why our pharma companies, Doctors w/o Borders, and the WHO are sending copious amounts of medication to cover all the usual suspects.

Tom - Cynical answers are just fine. I expect them.
And Westerners seem to be most sensitive about it when pressed in my experience, but then I'm pretty insulated from other points of view. Western institutions have targeted individual guilt down to a science.

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Zyne
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Those who were/are exploited, have my sympathies more, for sure. They suffered and suffer within a circumstance they are all but helpless to change. In Iraq, there was always the death of toppling of Saddam; the end of that regime was certain, sooner or later. The tusnami was entirely random.

I'm willing to do little individually for any outsiders until my city is clean of slave labor, homelessness, etc. (Houston--we've got a sizable slave trade for a western city). Everything I can give is needed locally to me, and urgently. And for me, that is where my help is going to go.

I think my government ought to play a large, but not necessairly leading, role in assistance for the tusnami countries. We can afford to take a top-tier position here, our people want us to, and it earns us goodwill from the world we otherwise could not acquire. I would personally prefer that we not lead the recovery effort. We're too far outside of the region and other, closer and capable, nations are willing.

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The Drake
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I'll try not to turn this into a rehash of self-interest... but it won't be easy. People care about people that most remind them of themselves or things that have happened to them personally. I've talked with people here on the West Coast of the US, and many of them felt much less connected to the 9/11 attacks. Certainly less so than those of us from New England, most of whom have been to NY at least once, and had personal friends in the city. It is why the Christian Children's Fund sends a picture of a specific child, even though the donated money is not at all specifically directed to that child.

Others in the thread have pointed up other good reasons for this behaviour, but I wanted to add this factor as well.

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Redskullvw
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Who do I feel more sorry for? The people living in Iraq before and after our invasion. The people of Sudan enduring 21 years of genocide leading to 2.3 million dead. The people of Yemen and Somolia living in anarchy. The people of the Congo and Namibia who suffer relentless ethnic cleansings and revolution. The people in the disfunctional former Yugoslavia. The people in Iran living under despotic rule. And the list could go on and on.

Why? because unlike a natural disaster, which is largely unavoidable, the people I feel sorry for are suffering under dictatorships that could and should be eliminated. Unfortunately, the political, diplomatic, and intellectual will that would allow us to eliminate such suffering does not exist. Its far easier to respond to a natural disaster because the effort focused on the aftermath is simply to return the victims to a pre-existant condition. To respond to the victims of human induced suffering would and does, require the creation of radical differences between the world with dictatorship and a world without.

Its much easier to ignore human induced suffering, and instead write a check to a charity to help ameliorate a disaster. Its much harder to declare dictatorship and genocide as problems requiring real, immediate, and effective action. North Korea consistently starves several hundred thousand people a year. The USA, and UN send charity food shipments every year. And its always too little and too late because the dictatorship refuses what could be availible and prevents timely import. Does anyone here ever point out the obvious? Its not that people are starved to death yearly, but rather that a dictatorship creates a man made disaster every year on schedual.

But I guess it ultimately depends on your moral stand. Do you clearly define preventable suffering as being superceeded by random natural acts that lead to suffering. Or do you belive random natural acts are superceeded by that which is in our power to prevent?

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carmachu
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quote:
Originally posted by WarrsawPact:


Search your soul here and be honest, most of all with yourself:

Who do you feel more sympathy for, the 100-something thousand people killed by the tsunami and 5 million-plus other affected people, or the more than 400,000 people thus far discovered buried in mass graves in Iraq and the tens of millions of people who suffered for many years under Saddam's regime?

How about the millions who die constantly under North Korea's repressive "worker's paradise," and the lucky/unlucky millions who survived them and continue to suffer?

Sympathy isnt a zero sum game. Just becuase I feel sadden for one doesnt mean I cant for another. I feel bad for all of them.
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TomDavidson
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"The kind of attacks on unequal sympathy are designed to *raise up* that wretched child, no matter how he got into that room."

No, not really. Because any truly zero-sum game points out the following:

1) It's one child.
2) It's still alive, even if in misery.
3) Its misery makes the joy of thousands of others possible.

So, yes, while it is kept in deliberate misery, making its torment analogous to Saddam's tortures in one particular, the other particulars instantly seek to justify it.

The only way this kind of zero-sum argument does not lead to Omelas is if you start with the premise that harm done deliberately by one person to another person is never worth any cost. But that's not a premise that we're prepared to accept, is it?

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Gaoics79
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I'm going to make a confession here: I honestly don't care when people die abroad. I didn't feel shock or horror when I heard about the tsunamis, and I don't find myself terribly concerned by tales of murder and genocide. Sure, I give blood, I hand money to the ladies collecting for Tsunamis relief, and I even sponsored some children in Africa for a while. (probably more out of guilt for NOT caring, than anything else) But can I actually get worked up about total strangers dying thousands of miles away due to circumstances completely beyond my control? No. Am I a monster? Maybe, but I'm betting I'm not alone, even if most people aren't as open about it as me.

I find it ironic that I am able to feel some sympathy for individuals who suffer hardships (although typically the degree of feeling increases with my similarity in circumstances to that person) but not to groups of people. 3,000 people die, or 3,000,000, it becomes meaningless after a while. I just find it hard to care when so many are dying every day for so many reasons. It's like trying to plug a leaky dam with toilet paper.

Yes, obviously people care more about tsunamis victims than people dying in North Korea. It's easy to identify with victims of natural disasters that kill all at once, than victims of evil regimes that kill slowly, and not as dramatically. It also doesn't hurt that many people in the west have travelled to some of these countries, and the idea that "it could have been me" probably makes it easier to sympathize. The average American, even those living in what we would consider the worst of circumstaces (by American standards) can hardly contemplate the reality of starving to death, or being dragged away by secret police to be tortured and killed and dumped in a mass grave.

Oh, and by the way, I agree with Tom; Warsaw, you are engaging in demagoguery.

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David Ricardo
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Jasonr, well said.

And as Tom and Jasonr have said, WarsawPact is engaging in very transparent demagoguery.

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WarrsawPact
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carmachu - Who said anything about you not being able to feel sorry for both? I asked you who you felt MORE sympathy for.

Zero sum game? What?

Tom - Raising up the quality of living for all the people of the world isn't a zero sum game in any way near what you're talking about. In fact, our happiness has often come through raising up others, as our security has. In the story of Omelas the author makes it out as though a happy city could only be believable if they had to trade off something for it, a sort of zero sum game that was designed to show off the horror experienced by the child, make the suffering of the child equal in emotional weight to the happiness of the city, and make it a trade. That's where the literary style points.

Before the child came up in that story, I remember thinking, "Uh-huh, and how did they get to this enlightened point?" and I was really disappointed to see it all come down to that trade-off of the suffering child. There's no reason for the child to exist except that it's the rule the author made up.

What about mutually profitable enterprise? Could they not rise up to that eudaimon without the suffering of that child? Is that the only believable way people could make a better way of life for themselves?
The story of Omelas is a smear on human imagination and capability and the history of progress.

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TomDavidson
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"There's no reason for the child to exist except that it's the rule the author made up."

Well, no. The point of the story is in fact the exact opposite. [Smile] In fact, there's no reason for the city to exist in the story, except that it's there to provide an excuse for the child.

LeGuin's story is a bit of a thought experiment. What if, she argues, it would be possible to create a worldwide utopia, a perfect and unassailable state of flawless bliss, that only required in return a teeny little bit of suffering? In asking the question, she basically and deliberately multiplies both sides of the metaphor by a large number; the teensy bit of suffering becomes the anguish of a single person, and the bliss becomes a worldwide utopia. She's aware that by exaggerating this point, she's leaving practicality behind; this is why she never specifies why, exactly, the child has to suffer. For the purposes of the thought experiment, however, the child has to suffer so that everyone else can be happier than they otherwise would.

And then she asks: is this a bad thing? If all it took was torturing one person to make the rest of the world perfect, would it be worth it?

On this board alone, we have seen people say that it would be okay to torture a single individual to prevent, say, a single nuclear explosion. Would these same people not agree that it would be okay to torture a single individual to guarantee the happiness of the rest of the world?

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WarrsawPact
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It's really surprising to see you jump on the dogpile, David. I mean, it's so *shocking* to see you line up to insult me.

You forgot to call me an idealist this time, though. Shame, David, shame!

Yeah, it's transparent demagoguery, as I was basically admitting in the first sentence of this thread, but it's *reverse* demagoguery. It's not the worst sort of demagoguery: this was blatantly designed to poke at moral equivalency, not appeal to your emotions. The purpose was not to provoke a simple and irrational answer, but precisely the opposite. I noticed a funny trend here in America, and I'm going to keep on poking at that bleeding sore and keep on egging it on.
I'm deliberately questioning what makes you guys tick, and a lot of people are apparently uncomfortable with that. Look at how many people here were not as comfortable as Redskullvw was answering the question directly.

I gotta ask:
Why are people killed in spectacular ways easier to mourn than people who suffer for years before dying of something as painful as starvation? Is it your attention span? Is it that you haven't been exposed to that kind of wasting death?
No, you can't imagine being crushed by a 36-ft high wave or dying of starvation THERE either, or of dying of one of the many diseases that are going to afflict them, but you gave anyway. So not being able to visualize the full horror isn't it.
I'm coming very quickly to the conclusion that many people don't think a human being in and of himself has any intrinsic value. I'm also looking at a strong trend toward egoism.

I mean, is there anyone here who thinks killing one person is equivalent to killing two persons or fifty persons or three thousand persons or six million persons?
So obviously numbers do matter too, even when the scale gets way up there. you may not feel 6 million times worse about the Holocaust as you did about the murder on the news in your community, but chances are you do care more.

And we respond to violence caused by humans with expensive, far-reaching programs... as well as responding to natural disasters. We watch both on the news, from the Palestinian/Israeli conflict and wars to hurricanes and storm systems and earthquakes. There was coverage of East Timor, and of Bosnia long before we got involved. There was lots of coverage of the hostage situation at the school in Russia.
Clearly there's something about politics that's stopping you from caring about North Koreans as much as you care about the comparatively free Sumatrans whose suffering has thus far been much shorter-lived.
I'm wondering if some of us can even admit what it is that's really holding us back. Is it fear of what might have to be done to stop atrocities?

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WarrsawPact
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Tom - Perhaps part of the thought experiment was that people like me would look at the point of the story differently than people like you. The "believability" aspect the author brings up sticks out in my mind.
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Gaoics79
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"And then she asks: is this a bad thing? If all it took was torturing one person to make the rest of the world perfect, would it be worth it?"

I know what my answer to this question would be, and I'm pretty sure I know what most Christians would say about it too [Smile]

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David Ricardo
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As for myself, I consider sympathy or the lack thereof to be irrelevant regarding foreign policy.

For me, the only standard of whether we should intervene on the behalf of suffering peoples around the world is whether the intevention will be net positive for American national interest (net being benefits to our national interest outweight the costs to our national interest).

That is why I have never supported American military intervention in Somalia, Rwanda, Bosnia. Humanitarianism ranks pretty low on my foreign policy priority list -- while humanitarian crises do merit some level of American foreign aid, they do not merit the commitment of scarce American military power and scarce American military lives.

Then WarsawPact predictably makes a false comparison between Rwanda and Abu Ghraib:

quote:
I'm poking my wandering nose into a very sensitive spot for a lot of Westerners: our practical and moral equivalency.
Eight hundred thousand Rwandans died in 100 days. You'll spend a thousand times the breath on Abu Ghraib as you spent on the hundreds of thousands of people hacked to death with machetes and tossed into rivers in Rwanda.

There is a very simple difference between Rwanda and Abu Ghraib (and other related torture incidents throughout the rest of the world). The United States itself did not kill 800,000 Rwandans. On the other hand, the United States did torture hundreds of Iraqis and Muslims innocent of any crime/terrorism against the United States.

I do not blame the United States for not intervening in Rwanda to potentially save 800,000 Rwandans because I felt it was neither America's responsibility nor was it in our national interest to do so.

On the other hand, I do fault elements of the Pentagon and the Bush Administration for torturing innocent Iraqis precisely because I feel that Abu Ghraib and other such incidents are America's responsibility and such torture significantly harmed America's national interest in the world.

Maybe you could say that I am a cold-hearted bastard, but that's precisely how I feel. In terms of national interest, choosing not to militariliy intervene in Rwanda was a wise choice that weighed the risks of intervention as too high against the extremely limited benefits of intervention. On the other hand, torturing innocent Muslims in the middle of a war against fundamentalist Islamic terrorism significantly weakened American national security throughout the world.

That's the difference.

[ January 09, 2005, 07:09 PM: Message edited by: David Ricardo ]

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WarrsawPact
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David -

quote:
Then WarsawPact predictably makes a false comparison between Rwanda and Abu Ghraib
No, I didn't. I was measuring the cost to those specific human beings who were harmed or killed by Americans versus those harmed and killed by Hutus. On the basis of humane treatment, a lot of people have expressed a lot of sympathy for the prisoners at Abu Ghraib who did not express nearly so much sympathy for Tutsis in Rwanda. Specific incidents of harm have been delved into in detail, pictures have enjoyed wide circulation, etc. But if Americans (special case that we apparently are?) have no place doing these things, why don't the people who protest so much to it have the same or greater reaction to far worse brutality in North Korea and Rwanda?
If people are gonig to continue to express a belief in intrinsic value of their fellow human beings, if they're going to pay lip service to it, then they need to explain why some human beings are more equal than others. And that's on both sides of the equation: holding some people to a higher standard than others, calling for punishment of those responsible, etc. Why not be consistent and say, Whatever effort we're willing to put in to defend a handful of suspected terrorists, we must be willing to put in proportional effort to support hundreds of thousands or millions of people elsewhere.
It's like treating a single sting while you have the materials to wipe out all the killer bees still in the air.

Now, you say:
"Maybe you could say that I am a cold-hearted bastard, but that's precisely how I feel."
Actually, I consider that endearing -- I just called myself a cold-hearted bastard (those exact words) on the Social Security question thread. You saying something like the following makes *perfect* sense to ME:
quote:
For me, the only standard of whether we should intervene on the behalf of suffering peoples around the world is whether the intevention will be net positive for American national interest (net being benefits to our national interest outweight the costs to our national interest).
... but not everyone who is pouring out their heart to the tsunami victims, and also happens to hold a belief in the concept of human rights, is so consistent. That's who I'm talking to here.

You and I agree on doing things principally because they are *practical*. Where we disagree is on what is and is not a practical way to secure our interests.
============================
And please, enough with using words like "predictably" to talk about other people. It's high-and-mighty talk like that that makes you so irritating to talk to sometimes, when you could easily make a good point and have people listen to it if they weren't so distracted by your condescension. That goes for attaching labels to people too. The maddening thing is, it's unneccessary! You have the tools to make your point *just fine* without getting personal.
If you want to be practical, as you say you do, how about some basic respect? When you're making a point, you can type out some really good stuff, but how can I devote my main attention to that when you're counting points on one hand and slapping me with the other? Intelligence is useless in a debate if your audience is too busy hating you to listen.

[ January 09, 2005, 07:47 PM: Message edited by: WarrsawPact ]

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TomDavidson
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"Perhaps part of the thought experiment was that people like me would look at the point of the story differently than people like you."

I've discussed this story with LeGuin personally -- it's one of my favorites, as well as one of hers -- and she never mentioned that possibility. I suppose she might have forgotten to bring that up, but I think it's unlikely.

So, no, while I think she's winkingly aware in the story of just how unlikely a "utopia" is, and even hints with gentle humor at how impossible her hypothetical might be, I don't think we're meant to dwell on that aspect of the story; her point, as far as I can tell, is pretty exclusively to explore the ramifications of zero-sum ethics.

[ January 09, 2005, 08:50 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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Dagonee
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quote:
we have seen people say that it would be okay to torture a single individual to prevent, say, a single nuclear explosion. Would these same people not agree that it would be okay to torture a single individual to guarantee the happiness of the rest of the world?
I would say it might be acceptable to torture a single person to prevent a nuclear explosion, but I would not say that it would be OK to torture a single individual to guarantee the happiness of the rest of the world. And it's not even a close question in my mind.

In the hypotheticals involving torture to prevent the nuclear explosion (and millions of deaths), the person being tortured bears moral responsibility for the millions of people being in danger. This is the only reason I would even consider the possibility that the torture might be acceptable at all.

So no, at least one of those people would not agree that it would be okay to torture a single individual to guarantee the happiness of the rest of the world.

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