"Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#21  Postby romansh » Jun 28, 2021 4:18 am

Hermit wrote:
zoon wrote:This control by consequences is only going to work if the person’s action was in fact chosen and neither forced nor the result of mental illness, i.e. only if it was “free willed”. There is no point in punishing someone, or otherwise holding them responsible, unless the action they are being punished for was “free willed” in that limited sense.

If that were the case we could conclude that dogs have free will. Cats not so much.

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That's funny and points out the twisting we have to do for compatibilism.

Having said I remember listening to an animal trainer on CBC suggesting cats were easier to train than dogs ... but I agree with your point. Funny!
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#22  Postby Hermit » Jun 28, 2021 8:17 am

romansh wrote:I remember listening to an animal trainer on CBC suggesting cats were easier to train than dogs ... but I agree with your point. Funny!

Well, I have seen lions jumping through fiery hoops, but London to a brick, that animal trainer's suggestion will not stand up to statistical evidence.

Whatever. The claim that "control by consequences is only going to work if the person’s action was in fact chosen and neither forced nor the result of mental illness, i.e. only if it was “free willed”" is absurd. The "if the person’s action was in fact chosen" bit also makes it very obviously circular. Apart from the seriously deranged minds who join this forum from time to time in order to regale us with their wisdom I have not encountered such poorly formulated notions since surreptitious57 ceased posting here.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#23  Postby zoon » Jun 28, 2021 2:15 pm

scott1328 wrote:..
Some have posited, i.e. Dennett, that consciousness arises from Theory of Mind applied to one self

Yes, I agree with Dennett there.

I’m emphasizing, I think more than Dennett does, that Theory of Mind is a social matter, which:
a) evolved as a means of predicting other people whether they want to be predicted or not, and
b) is still a far more effective means of predicting other people in ordinary life than the best of modern science.
I don’t think either of those points is controversial. Dennett stresses, rightly, that brain science is nowhere near predicting what we will do, but I don’t think he also stresses that evolved Theory of Mind is currently more effective than science for predicting other people, and that this is why we still need it. It's not just a convenient way of organising our own brains with a global workspace or whatever, it's using the similarity of one brain to another to predict what our competitors/cooperators are likely to do.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#24  Postby zoon » Jun 28, 2021 2:18 pm

Hermit wrote:
zoon wrote:This evolved method of prediction gives us a somewhat indirect method of partial control: if an action is followed by a consequence that person doesn’t want (that is, punishing them), then they are less likely to repeat the action.

It's called operant conditioning, and it works with reinforcing stimuli as well as aversion.

zoon wrote:This control by consequences is only going to work if the person’s action was in fact chosen and neither forced nor the result of mental illness, i.e. only if it was “free willed”. There is no point in punishing someone, or otherwise holding them responsible, unless the action they are being punished for was “free willed” in that limited sense.

If that were the case we could conclude that dogs have free will. Cats not so much…

Yes, I oversimplified what I was trying to say. When I wrote: “if an action is followed by a consequence that person doesn’t want (that is, punishing them), then they are less likely to repeat the action”, I agree that I was unintentionally describing operant conditioning, as when Pavlov’s dogs salivated on hearing a bell which had in the past heralded food (though as you say that’s a reinforcing stimulus rather than aversion).

I was intending to talk about the fear of consequences which, much of the time, keeps us following specific social rules, and which is rarely learnt through operant conditioning. For example, a driver in the UK generally tries to stay within the speed limit because they don’t want to get points on their licence, and this is not simple operant conditioning, it’s a balancing of risk and reward which requires massively more information processing. It’s a fear of consequences, but in the context of a shared complex model of social rules and expectations. A society which tried to control people only through operant conditioning would not be recognisably human.

As a default, drivers in the UK who break the speed limit are taken to have been free-willed and responsible, i.e. liable to be punished. If someone was holding a gun to the speeding driver’s head and telling them to go faster, then they were coerced and there’s not much point in punishing the driver, better to get the person holding the gun. If the driver had an unexpected epileptic fit, then again there’s not much point in punishment as such, though their driving licence would probably be taken away for safety reasons. In both those cases, the speeding driver would not be taken as having exercised free will, or as having been responsible for the speeding. (The cases where the driver is not held responsible are both worse for the driver than merely getting points on the licence, I think this is where Keep It Real may not have thought things through. We are only likely to be excused punishment on grounds of lack of free will where things are already worse for us than the punishment would have been, otherwise evasion could be too easy. Young children are not taken to have legal responsibility, but their parents are expected to control them as they would not be allowed to control other adults.)
(Perhaps the gun to the head driver might have chosen to be shot, and it becomes a case of deciding what’s reasonable.)

All of this is entirely compatible with our being mechanisms following the laws of physics: I am describing legal rather than theological free will and responsibility. If science enabled us to predict each other in detail as mechanisms, instead of using evolved and often inaccurate guesswork, I expect that societies would not be organised as they are now, and the concepts of free will and responsibility might well be discarded.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#25  Postby romansh » Jun 28, 2021 3:53 pm

zoon wrote:
As a default, drivers in the UK who break the speed limit are taken to have been free-willed and responsible, i.e. liable to be punished. If someone was holding a gun to the speeding driver’s head and telling them to go faster, then they were coerced and there’s not much point in punishing the driver, better to get the person holding the gun.

This of course is confounding freedom of action with freedom of will.

For me at least ... freedom of will is a physics issue and and freedom of action (whether or not there is a gun to a head) is a societal issue or interpretation. I suspect in the UK courts avoid the issue of free will all together. But they will take into account freedom of action ... rushing wife to hospital etc.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#26  Postby scott1328 » Jun 28, 2021 4:30 pm

I am not sure how this discussion got into a discussion of free will.

What is clear to me is that history has shown repeatedly, that KiR repeated abuse of substances is not a matter of his free will, no matter your stance on the Free Will/Determinism debate.

What is the case however: there is no freedom from consequences.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#27  Postby romansh » Jun 28, 2021 5:25 pm

scott1328 wrote: What is the case however: there is no freedom from consequences.

I think this is absolutely correct.
But if we stop seeing people as culprits and victims it might affect how those consequences are implemented and viewed.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#28  Postby zoon » Jun 28, 2021 6:16 pm

romansh wrote:
zoon wrote:
As a default, drivers in the UK who break the speed limit are taken to have been free-willed and responsible, i.e. liable to be punished. If someone was holding a gun to the speeding driver’s head and telling them to go faster, then they were coerced and there’s not much point in punishing the driver, better to get the person holding the gun.

This of course is confounding freedom of action with freedom of will.

For me at least ... freedom of will is a physics issue and and freedom of action (whether or not there is a gun to a head) is a societal issue or interpretation. I suspect in the UK courts avoid the issue of free will all together. But they will take into account freedom of action ... rushing wife to hospital etc.

Yes, I suspect UK law does now avoid all mention of free will, too much baggage. The Wikipedia article on “Duress in English law” here doesn’t include either of the phrases “free will” or “free action”. There is mention of “crimes he commits against his will”, where someone’s claiming to have been under duress.

You say that for you freedom of will is a physics issue, and I agree there’s something to be said for avoiding the term “free will” except in discussions of determinism, and then only to point out that it’s probably not there. In ordinary English usage, the phrase “free will” may still be used informally to indicate freedom from social pressure, as in the example given in the Cambridge Dictionary here, which defines “free will” as “the ability to decide what to do independently of any outside influence”, and gives as an example: “No one told me to do it - I did it of my own free will.” When it’s being used in that kind of way, “free will”, like “responsibility”, doesn’t need to be taken as making a metaphysical claim.

In the end, we are almost certainly mechanisms which are as determinate as car engines or computers or plants, but the concepts of “committing a crime against one’s will” or of having “diminished responsibility”, presumably as opposed to normal undiminished responsibility, are still relevant in our social life, because we cannot yet understand or predict each other as the mechanisms we are. Our social life is still built around predictions which are unscientific evolved guesswork, and which come with accompanying working concepts such as consciousness, intention and responsibility.

scott1328 wrote:I am not sure how this discussion got into a discussion of free will.

What is clear to me is that history has shown repeatedly, that KiR repeated abuse of substances is not a matter of his free will, no matter your stance on the Free Will/Determinism debate.

What is the case however: there is no freedom from consequences.


romansh wrote:
scott1328 wrote: What is the case however: there is no freedom from consequences.

I think this is absolutely correct.
But if we stop seeing people as culprits and victims it might affect how those consequences are implemented and viewed.


Agreeing with both.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#29  Postby The_Piper » Jun 29, 2021 2:39 am

I feel something in my nose, and can't help having a desire to remove it, but have the conscious ability to not act on that desire. Until near a tissue and out of view of the other monkeys, of course. Free will. :lol:
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#30  Postby jamest » Jun 30, 2021 2:06 am

Acting responsibly is a given throughout all walks of life. Meaning what, exactly? That we should not seek to disturb the status quo?
What would our American cousins have thought of this 'philosophy' back in 1776? Fuck all, is the answer, is why 1776 happened!

There's problems here, not least of which is demanding a meaning of the concept of responsibility in some kind of absolute manner, lest placing a measure upon the alcohol one can "responsibly" consume, ultimately means nothing.

I'm sure, for example, those of us of British origin liberally fed rum to the crews of those ships involved in the Battle of Trafalgar. Etc.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#31  Postby felltoearth » Jun 30, 2021 4:21 pm

What the fuck are you rambling on about?


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#32  Postby Hermit » Jun 30, 2021 8:23 pm

felltoearth wrote:What the fuck are you rambling on about?

If people had acted responsibly, 1776 would not have happened, at least not in some of North America. The poor sods would have gone from 1775 straight to 1777.

Going by the post preceding this one it looks like alcohol was involved in the writing, so there's that.
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#33  Postby Spearthrower » Jun 30, 2021 9:21 pm

felltoearth wrote:What the fuck are you rambling on about?


A 50 year old edgelord.

To cite the dictionary:

edgelords act like contrarians in the hope that everyone will admire them as rebels


I think that pretty much sums it ALL up.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#34  Postby Hermit » Jun 30, 2021 10:05 pm

Spearthrower wrote:
felltoearth wrote:What the fuck are you rambling on about?


A 50 year old edgelord.

To cite the dictionary:

edgelords act like contrarians in the hope that everyone will admire them as rebels


I think that pretty much sums it ALL up.

Edgelords can be entertaining at times. Occasionally, they can even be thought provoking. JamesT's combination of self-certainty, arrogance and ignorance is neither. Think back to how many times he has told us we are numpties, need to get a grip on ourselves, wake the fuck up and that he is here to tell us what's what. To top it all off he keeps informing us that his brilliant insights are tragically rejected by us. He is the prophet in his own land.

JamesT is someone with a low cognitive ability who vastly overestimates his ability.

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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#35  Postby The Serpent » Jul 01, 2021 1:41 am

Keep It Real wrote:Maybe not the right subforum for this but alcoholism/psychology so...move as desired.

I'm firmly on the wagon these days and that's partly due to my working out that drinking alcohol does in fact "go against everything I believe in." What do I believe in? That people need claim responsibility for our actions and thus behave responsibly.

Drinking alcohol seems the antithesis of this crux, being that to drink is, to a greater or lesser extent, to LOSE one's inhibitions, reasoning and higher "humane" intellectual properties and thus behave irresponsibly (again, to a greater or lesser extent).

I am ideologically opposed to drinking alcohol. Fundy fundy fundy! :drunk: :hand: yes, it's true. Call me Comfort ;)


Are you like this all the time? I mean in real life where there are consequences and stuff or is this something you do online just to upset the inmates comfortable in the knowledge you won't cop a punch in the cake-hole.

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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#36  Postby Keep It Real » Jul 01, 2021 2:52 pm

The Serpent wrote:
Keep It Real wrote:Maybe not the right subforum for this but alcoholism/psychology so...move as desired.

I'm firmly on the wagon these days and that's partly due to my working out that drinking alcohol does in fact "go against everything I believe in." What do I believe in? That people need claim responsibility for our actions and thus behave responsibly.

Drinking alcohol seems the antithesis of this crux, being that to drink is, to a greater or lesser extent, to LOSE one's inhibitions, reasoning and higher "humane" intellectual properties and thus behave irresponsibly (again, to a greater or lesser extent).

I am ideologically opposed to drinking alcohol. Fundy fundy fundy! :drunk: :hand: yes, it's true. Call me Comfort ;)


Are you like this all the time? I mean in real life where there are consequences and stuff or is this something you do online just to upset the inmates comfortable in the knowledge you won't cop a punch in the cake-hole.

Enquiring minds and all that.


I started this other thread here about personal responsibility which outlines my views on this more thoroughly. I'm now back on the wagon, been 7 days dry now and looking/feeling good (goodish at any rate, if it weren't for this brutal <900kcal diet I've put myself on which is...uncomfortable).

The drinking "blip" that occurred last week was just that, a blip, and highlighted the dreadful consequences of lewd/crude/rude/insane/inane/inflamed behaviour which happens when I hit the sauce. Eg: I punched a wall with the flat of my palm several times which fucked up and tore my muscles/ligaments in my arm (I'm built - been working out a lot recently) and shouted and screamed myself horse because of the unjust and tragic current situation of poverty and famine in Ethiopia; lost the next day (Friday) entirely and even neglected to take my warfarin (crime of the century, IMO, seizures caused by blood clots on brain....not funny); spent a fortune, chatted shit to locals on the street, ate rubbish, consumed the calories in 22ish cans of beer (bang went the diet)...I could go on.

Fuck booze. I'd scream it from the rafters, if only that wouldn't seem crazy/dumb. I'd tell my opinion of the demonic sauce to anybody's face, such is my resolve....even to a fuming Vladimir Klitschko, for example. Fuck the demon drink in the eyehole with a screwdriver wrapped in razor wire.

I have no fear about speaking my truth on this, no matter what "gob smacking" uncivilised atavistic savage might object. Claro? Dobry.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#37  Postby The Serpent » Jul 02, 2021 12:18 am

Keep It Real wrote:
I started this other thread here about personal responsibility which outlines my views on this more thoroughly. I'm now back on the wagon, been 7 days dry now and looking/feeling good (goodish at any rate, if it weren't for this brutal <900kcal diet I've put myself on which is...uncomfortable).

The drinking "blip" that occurred last week was just that, a blip, and highlighted the dreadful consequences of lewd/crude/rude/insane/inane/inflamed behaviour which happens when I hit the sauce. Eg: I punched a wall with the flat of my palm several times which fucked up and tore my muscles/ligaments in my arm (I'm built - been working out a lot recently) and shouted and screamed myself horse because of the unjust and tragic current situation of poverty and famine in Ethiopia; lost the next day (Friday) entirely and even neglected to take my warfarin (crime of the century, IMO, seizures caused by blood clots on brain....not funny); spent a fortune, chatted shit to locals on the street, ate rubbish, consumed the calories in 22ish cans of beer (bang went the diet)...I could go on.

Fuck booze. I'd scream it from the rafters, if only that wouldn't seem crazy/dumb. I'd tell my opinion of the demonic sauce to anybody's face, such is my resolve....even to a fuming Vladimir Klitschko, for example. Fuck the demon drink in the eyehole with a screwdriver wrapped in razor wire.

I have no fear about speaking my truth on this, no matter what "gob smacking" uncivilised atavistic savage might object. Claro? Dobry.


Yeah, I saw that thread. I spent 7 weeks in solitary confinement and even I couldn't bring myself to wade through that fucking boring shit. Something about the name "Ben Stein" that conjures a sense of tedium that would drive a feedlot steer to take up a hobby, I guess.

I don't think the drink is your big problem. In fact, notwithstanding the irony of your username, I wonder if it's not an answer. There are worse ways to go than drinking yourself to death. I'm not saying you should do it, but certainly reserve it as an option. Imagine the shrill Loachian romance of it. Found dead on the bathroom of your council flat 5 days into an English autumn. Your neighbours noticed an unpleasant odour and rang 999. Add a Billy Bragg (featuring Shane MacGowan!) soundtrack and you'd have a BBC 90 minute made-for-telly-but-available-on-iplayer special. 3 out of 5 stars says the Guardian.

As for your neighbours, listen to that inner voice. They are laughing at you. What else can they do? Succumb to the depressing reality that you live along side them or see the funny side?

I don't want you think ("I'm built") that your life is entirely without purpose. Even you can be of some small use. Consider the homeless people you walk past every day who get to look at you think "at least I'm not like that."

There it is. Your reason for being. You serve as a warning to others.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#38  Postby Basset Hound » Jul 03, 2021 5:21 am

When you drink 'responsibly' do you add ice or drink it straight?
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#39  Postby Keep It Real » Jul 04, 2021 11:07 am

The Serpent wrote:Yeah, I saw that thread. I spent 7 weeks in solitary confinement and even I couldn't bring myself to wade through that fucking boring shit. Something about the name "Ben Stein" that conjures a sense of tedium that would drive a feedlot steer to take up a hobby, I guess.

I don't think the drink is your big problem. In fact, notwithstanding the irony of your username, I wonder if it's not an answer. There are worse ways to go than drinking yourself to death. I'm not saying you should do it, but certainly reserve it as an option. Imagine the shrill Loachian romance of it. Found dead on the bathroom of your council flat 5 days into an English autumn. Your neighbours noticed an unpleasant odour and rang 999. Add a Billy Bragg (featuring Shane MacGowan!) soundtrack and you'd have a BBC 90 minute made-for-telly-but-available-on-iplayer special. 3 out of 5 stars says the Guardian.

As for your neighbours, listen to that inner voice. They are laughing at you. What else can they do? Succumb to the depressing reality that you live along side them or see the funny side?

I don't want you think ("I'm built") that your life is entirely without purpose. Even you can be of some small use. Consider the homeless people you walk past every day who get to look at you think "at least I'm not like that."

There it is. Your reason for being. You serve as a warning to others.


Thanks for the "Loachian" education, seen two of his films since your post and WOW! The horror! Cool stuff, ta. As to your (entirely fictitious) assessment that my life amounts to a pitiful footnote on the dried scrotal sack of a lynched warlock, or somesuch, I can only respond thus: had a bad day, The Serpent? Decided to smear your faeces on the wall did we? Awwwww.
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Re: "Please drink responsibly"...eh?!

#40  Postby BlackBart » Jul 04, 2021 11:12 am

More of an Alan Bleasdale fan myself. :coffee:
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