(FB 1548868857 Timestamp)
QUESTION: IS MORALITY OBJECTIVE OR SUBJECTIVE?
(The Definitive Answer. Core.)
—“Curt, sorry to bother you because I know you are extremely busy, but need your insight.”—
CD: Thank you for respecting my time, but it’s my job, and I like my job (mostly). It’s no use being a Law Giver if you don’t answer questions of law. 😉
—“I am having a discussion about reciprocity with a person coming from a philosophy background. It started with his assertion that all morality is subjective.”—
CD: This is a grammatical problem – a failure of deflation and disambiguation.
- Personal morality is subjective and representative of personal utility, under which one considers actions reciprocal(power) and proportional(weakness) or not. It is not in fact moral, only useful.
Normative morality is subjectively respectable or avoidable, but rarely breakable without some cost to you. It is not in fact moral, only the result of market competition for reciprocity(power) and proportionality(weakness).
Juridical Morality is objective: it is merely reciprocal. This is an empirical AND logical AND rational statement, since it is the universal basis for all law, with northern european being the least ‘tainted’.
So while a POSITIVE morality (what you want) may vary, NEGATIVE morality (what people do not want) does not vary.
And while we may have different subjective opinions over negative morality, it is quite simple to demonstrate otherwise that all law operates by reciprocity in matters of dispute. And all legislation aims at producing proportionality with in the limits of tolerable reciprocity given the economic order possible for the people in their state of development and geography.
In other words, it is not a opinion that morality (reciprocity) is a negative and objective universal, but that positive morality (proportionality) varies by circumstance.
The problem is that we use the word MORALITY without deflating it into POSITIVE (proportionality) and NEGATIVE (reciprocity). Because variations in positive is merely utilitarian for the individual but invariance in the negative is utilitarian for all.)
—“Of course, I took the opportunity to bring reciprocity into the discussion, even to the point where reciprocity as a measurable standard could be used to remove the subjectiveness. My meaning is that all acts are amoral, and we can measure empirically if an act is good (moral) or bad (immoral) based solely on if it violates reciprocity. “—
CD: You are quite correct. I offer the previous few paragraphs as means of explaining his conflation of positive and negative morality. So like positive and negative freedom, there cannot be any forceful positive freedoms, only negative without breaking the negative. As such There is no positive morality that can be demanded, only negative morality demanded, without breaking negative morality. … It might surprise you that it took 2500 years for someone to write those paragraphs but unfortunately, every other time it vanished. Maybe this time it will vanish through suppression as well.
—“I do not want to bring property-in-toto into the discussion yet, as I am attempting to keep in simple and in lay terms, even using simple examples to demonstrate. “—
CD: You don’t bring property in toto into a discussion since that is too loaded. It is better to ask if everything can be reduced to attempt at acquisition of something whether information experience, opportunity or resource and ask them if they can find an exception – they can’t. Then you just explain everything in terms of who is trying to acquire or defend what, and then show how reciprocity is the only rational choice – particularly for the strong.
—“I am writing as much (actually more) for others who will read it than trying to convince this “moral relativist”, so I don’t want to overcomplicate it. “—
(CD: Good. That is the tactic you should always use. You are more likely to sway the audience than the opponent, because the audience is less invested in the signaling.)
—“Okay, now for the question. “—-
CD: So you’re going to ask something harder than to deflate morality and to determine if it is objective or subjective? lol.
—“I was reading back though your posts, even back to 2016, looking if there was any insights if there are any conditions under which Conquest/Colonization did not violate reciprocity? I doubt I will be able to convince him, as he will not let go of his “subjectivity”, but I believe I need to answer his point that even property obtained via reciprocity is subjective, because one can reject the validity of ownership (by lack of moral justifications) because it can “only be owned through social contract” and that social contract is “based on theft and colonization.”—
—“He also claims that there cannot be one standard, even one of reciprocity, because even it is subjective. He claims that the “operational variables required for it to be true cannot exist outside subjectivity”. But, is that not why we make it operational and deflate terms, to remove such subjectivity? Am I missing something?”—
There is one negative standard (reciprocity) by which all laws especially international laws are judged. That’s both logical and empirical. The evidence is what it is.
It may be useful within groups to develop personal and normative morality, and to legislate proportionality for various utilitarian reasons.
However, morality remains, like freedom, like law, both logically and empirically a via-negativa; a via-negativa of reciprocity; and no positive morality can exist without violating the via negativa other than restitution for costs imposed.
I suppose I should diagram this so that it’s a bit more obvious to people. But they readily (all of us do) conflate personal moral intuition, with normative moral habituation, with objective morality: reciprocity.
And there is no other meaning possible, and all other attempts to make it possible are thefts, frauds, and sophisms.
There is one objective moral law: reciprocity, and an infinite number of utilitarian means of contributing to a commons from which all might benefit. To say those contributions to the commons in order to satisfy a sense of proportionality as well as reciprocity, are moral is simply false. They are purchasing amoral options against immorality. And most of those options are returning nothing other than psychic rewards (self worth, virtue signaling) because of one’s failure to meaningfully contribute, because of one’s lack of agency.
SO worse, those that lack such agency use this virtue signaling to coerce redistribution (theft) from some to others not for sake of proportionality or reciprocity, but to compensate for their lack of agency in achieving proportionality under the terms of reciprocity.
That is all.
If you can find any other philosopher that does a better job of providing this explanatory power in this precise a langauge then I would love to know who that is.