13 votes

Superman Speaks On Political Rights

Great Krypton!

I thought a little mental experiment would help add clarity on the "Rights" issue.

Let's suppose that Superman was real, and imagine he is a total dick and an evil bastard.

He has unlimited power and can't be killed or stopped.

No human's power or combined human power could overcome or restrain him.

His mind is set on evil, and no possible political activity could block his will. We are all his slaves if he so wishes.

It is not possible to establish or enforce political rights if Superman denies them.

No moral persuasion can make Superman change his ways and and be a decent creature. He will simply not respect the interests of humans.

In such a world, there could be no rights. They could not be achieved.

They would not be natural, since nature is mute and doesn't care, and they could not be politically achieved, because Superman says Nope.

So you can see via this absurd story, rights can only have meaning if they can be achieved by political means, by the exercise of political power. Otherwise they have no meaning and existence in the world.

Rights do have a political existence.

You can achieve a political situation where your interests or claims are enforced, and called political rights.

You can argue for them from your morality or interests or a lot of sources. But there is nothing inherent in nature that makes these claims BINDING on others, only force.

Your rights aren't provable or true in a logical sense. They requirre you to exercize your power and combine with others with similar interests to protect your common interests.

For the rights to become real, it requires the sanction of the political system, the body of society. So rights are legal constructs.

That's all I am saying.

For Truth, Justice and the American Way,

Bill3

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Adolf Hitler and the "Superman" of Friedrich Nietzsche

Source:

http://www.auss.info/auss_publication_file.php?pub_id=357&jo...

"...giant of the nineteenth century, Friedrich Nietzsche, declared by Will Durant [1] to be Darwin's spiritual son, hailed the passing of God and the enthronement of the power-motivated "superman" in His place.

Adolf Hitler certainly imbibed much of his personal philosophy from this
source.

"Lords of the Earth" is a familiar expression in Mein Kampf. That in the end Hitler considered himself the superman of Nietzsche's prophecy can not be doubted." [2] "In Hitler's utterances there runs the theme that the supreme leader is above the morals of ordinary man. Hegel and Nietzsche thought so too." [3]

In support of this allusion to Nietzsche Shirer refers to the following lines from this philosopher:

The strong men, the masters, regain the pure conscience of a beast of prey; monsters filled with joy, they can return from a fearful succession of murder, arson, rape and torture with the same joy in their hearts, the same contentment in their souls as if they had indulged in some student's rag...

When a man is capable of commanding, when he is by nature a "Master," when he is violent in act and gesture, of what importance are treaties to him ?...

To judge morality properly, it must be replaced by two concepts borrowed from zoology: the taming of a beast and the breeding of a specific species.[4]

An illustration from this century of the relationship between the concepts of origins and behavior can be found in Clarence Darrow's skilful[sic] defence of two youths in 1924 who had cruelly murdered a fourteen-year-old boy in Chicago.

Declared Darrow :

I will guarantee that you can go down to the University of Chicago to-day-into its big library-and find over a thousand volumes on Nietzsche, and I am sure I speak moderately.

If this boy is to blame for this, where did he get it? Is there any blame attached because somebody took Nietzsche's philosophy seriously and fashioned his life on it? And there is no question in this case but what it is true. Then who is to blame ? The University would be more to blame than he is.

The scholars of the world would be more to blame than he is. The publishers of the world-and Nietzsche's books are published by one of the biggest publishers of the world are more to blame than he. Your Honour, it is hardly fair to hang a nineteen-year-old boy for the philosophy that was taught him at the University." [5]

[1] Durant, The Story of Philosophy (New York, 1927), p. 435.
[2] William L. Shirer, Rise and Fall of the Third Reich (London, 1962 ) ,
p. 101.
[3] Ibid., p. I I I.
[4] Ibid.
[5] A Medical Scientist, Evolution (Toronto, 1953)~p . 87, citing 1)arrow,
Classified Speech Models by William N. Brigance.

hey... did shirer provide any

hey... did shirer provide any source for the Nietzsche quote?

ive never seen it, and have read most of Nietzsche. a google search only brings up shirer, no other source.

my provisional judgment is it is a fake quote.

I decided to investigate...

I decided to investigate the "lines" attributed to Nietzsche by Desmond Ford in his "Ethics, Chaos, and Cosmos".

On reading the section referred to by Desmond Ford (Page 111 of William L. Shirers "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich"), it could easily be read as though Shirer was quoting Nietzsche word for word (this is not the case).

In my view - after a cursory and scattered reading - Shirer appears to deceptively attribute his own interpretation of what Nietzsche was saying as though the words used where written by Nietzsche himself.

When looking into the reference (number 32 in the notes) that Shirer placed at the end of the section, it appears (If I have read it correctly) to point to page 76 of a book by August Kubizek "The Young Hitler I Knew".

Unfortunately the only online version of Kubizeks book that I can find has no page numbers.

A text search for key words from the questionable "quotes" reveals nothing, in fact, the only reference to Nietzsche I can find is the following:

"As for philosophical works, he[Hitler] always had his Schopenhauer by him, later Nietzsche, too. Yet I knew little about these, for he regarded these philosophers as, so to speak, his own personal affair -- private property which he would not share with anybody."

So, as you point out, this does appear to be a deception that has been picked up by many sources.

thank you for taking the time

thank you for taking the time to check that out.

i can usually spot a fake quote when its attributed to an author I am very familiar with.

i find it interesting that individuals would feel a need to resort to a false quote. if the target is genuinely so bad, why not just use his real words. Nietzsche was not known to mince words, and there are plenty of passages if taken out of context could come across in a negative light.

also a lot of mundane or random inspirational quotes are attributed to Nietzsche all the time where there is no source. mark twain too... this stuff is so common on the internet. most people don't care where a quote comes from if they like it.

of course, there are plenty of legit nietzsche quotes that would be offputting to an egalitarian, a socialist, a utilitarian, a believer in a naturally good human nature, or in natural rights, or a democratic political order, etc.

he has an entirely inverted system of ethics from the christian ethics or their offshoots.

but his actual philosophy is a lot more nuanced and complex than mere promotion of selfishness and rejection of altruism. that is a caricature.

many serious christian scholars have regarded Nietzsche as having a profound understanding of Christianity and what it would mean for the world when the christian god was no longer able to inspire belief.

he just had a different set of ultimate values for his idea of humanity that differed radically from hitherto prevalent moral systems.

its definitely worth considering before forming a judgement one way or another. of course it is not for everyone.

but don't forget that semi-libertarians like h l mencken were great admirers, and Nietzsche was a major opponent of the modern state, of socialism, among other things.

TwelveOhOne's picture

Interesting

The Nazis wanted to create a race of supermen. By this logic, the Nazis wanted to take away the rest of humanity's rights. And that would make sense.

But this argument doesn't, really. If the Nazis had succeeded and took over here, their abuse of our rights does not terminate them.

I love you. I'm sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you.
http://fija.org - Fully Informed Jury Association
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dude... the nazis idea of

dude... the nazis idea of eugenics hasn't got anything to do with the comic character of Superman lol. wtf

TwelveOhOne's picture

"TF" is that both groups used the term "superman"

I apologize for making you swear.

I love you. I'm sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you.
http://fija.org - Fully Informed Jury Association
http://jsjinc.net - Jin Shin Jyutsu (energy healing)

Double post...

Oops!

I would be interested in your take on this.

Would I be right in assuming - from your recent posts and the quote in your profile - that you are influenced by the works of Friedrich Nietzsche?

I know very little about Nietzsche myself, but have come across what appears to be two diametrically opposed views about his work and it's influence on Nazi Philosophy.

On the one hand I am finding references to Nietzsche-biographer Walter Kaufmann who says that his sister Elisabeth Forster-Nietzsche through her literary control, perverted his works with her own presentation thereby altering the context.

I found the references to Kaufmann in a student research paper found here:
http://www.history.ucsb.edu/faculty/marcuse/classes/133p/133...

On the other hand, there are others who say that the evidence is clear and can be found in abundance throughout his works.

For instance William L. Shirer's take on the Relationship Between Friedrich Nietzsche and the Nazis:

http://www.j-bradford-delong.net/TCEH/Nietzsche.html

Of course, I understand that context is everything and having not immersed myself in his writings cannot be the judge when it comes to how the nazi's associated themselves to Nietzsche to the point of distributing 150,000 copies of a specially durable wartime Zarathustra to the troops (The Nietzsche Legacy in Germany, 1890-1990, Berkeley and Los Angeles, 1992, p135).

But my question is, why is it so important that Nietzsche and his work be dissociated from it's influence on the Nazis?

The violation of rights doesn't equal their nonexistence...

Just because Superman goes around crapping on everyone's rights doesn't mean the people have no rights.

Rights are natural and

Rights are natural and endowed to us by our creator. Governments are not instituted to grant us our rights, but to preserve the rights we already have (though they fail every time!). By your logic, were I to kill you it would simply prove that you, in effect, had no right to live, regardless of the existence of a government. And I would disagree with that logic most vehemenently!
Whether or not a tyrrant has coercively denied me of my natural rights, they nonetheless most definiely exist.

Rights are natural and

Rights are natural and endowed to us by our creator. Governments are not instituted to grant us our rights, but to preserve the rights we already have (though they fail every time!). By your logic, were I to kill you it would simply prove that you, in effect, had no right to live, regardless of the existence of a government. And I would disagree with that logic most vehemenently!
Whether or not a tyrrant has coercively denied me of my natural rights, they nonetheless most definiely exist.

Rights are natural and

Rights are natural and endowed to us by our creator. Governments are not instituted to grant us our rights, but to preserve the rights we already have (though they fail every time!). By your logic, were I to kill you it would simply prove that you, in effect, had no right to live, regardless of the existence of a government. And I would disagree with that logic most vehemenently!
Whether or not a tyrrant has coercively denied me of my natural rights, they nonetheless most definiely exist.

You played that new Superman game on Xbox

.....didnt you? :p

Rights are free will. Free

Rights are free will. Free will does not exist only when a government exists to establish them. The bill of rights does not grant us our rights, it merely tells our government its limits. Rights don't even come from your willingness to defend them. By that logic, a person like Stephen Hawking who cannot move has no rights. It's evident that government and freedom cannot coexist. People always have grips, and government always gets used for bad. ALWAYS. You have weenies whining about some neighbor's weeds and run-down house who go use government to strip that other person's property rights. You have weenies who think we need to be licensed to travel There will always be weenies who absolutely think government is the only way to provide safety. I am for anarchy, and people-run local courts for criminal matters ONLY.

Please come join my forum if you're not a trendy and agree with my points of view.

You're the very reason Ayn

You're the very reason Ayn Rand despised libertarians.

Have you seen the recent film, 'Megamind'?

Sort of the same premise you present.

Great thought experiment btw.


http://youtu.be/AFJEw4hB7i4

9-11 was a panda job.

Lets imagine something

that is not real and then base all logic in the real world on that fantasy we imagined.

Fail...

BILL3 you have proven your self many times here on DP as one to be disregarded. No offense intended that is just my natural response from your works I have read and this article really demonstrates this fact. Big time fail here for BILL3...

The most powerful Law of Nature is Time. It is finite and we all will run out of it. Use this Law to your advantage, for it offers you infinite possibilities...

I think I would change your

I think I would change your argument.

Your rights exist to whatever extent you can defend/preserve them.

Plan for eliminating the national debt in 10-20 years:

Overview: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2010/09/12/my-plan-for-reducin...

Specific cuts; defense spending: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2011/01/03/more-detailed-look-a

Ahhh....supposing the GOP...

Let's suppose that the GOP was real, and imagine they have unlimited power and can't be killed or stopped; that their mind is set on evil, and no possible political activity could block their will; that we are all the GOP's slaves... and it is not possible to establish or enforce political rights if the GOP denies them...

Ah, but I repeat myself!

Focus folks! Down with the blond Palins' of this age... male or female!

Knock Knock... GOP...

Ron Paul 2016! Get used to it!

nice twist O:

nice twist O:

ahh..

why is it that because someone violates a right, it now "doesn't exist"? it seems that what you are saying in the superman scenario is that everyone is "ok" with superman doing whatever he wants with whoever he wants at anytime... because rights don't exist. if rights don't exist, no one would give a flying fuhk what superman did to them. ;) i'm pretty certain people, at least me, would be pissed about it, just as i'm sure there were a few slaves who were pissed about being slaves to the white man. maybe they couldn't do anything about it, but that doesn't change the fact that they have their rights usurped. They still exist, if superman dies they will be able to exercise the rights that have been usurped without fear of superman coming to violate them anytime he wishes.

If someone comes and chops off your hair, it is still your hair no matter who holds possession. Unless you have agreed to part with it, it is rightfully yours. no?

You could argue that some rights are almost impossible to protect without a group of people, etc... but, seriously, because something is taken from you does not mean that it doesn't exist...

I use Blue Wave, but don't expect one of THEIR silly taglines.

hmmmm. the point i was trying

hmmmm. the point i was trying to establish is that, whatever freedoms we desire as individuals, they only have meaning if we can establish their legal enforcement. if it wasn't possible to do so, it would be absurd to talk about rights existing. so their existence is based 100% on asserting them and enforcing our claim, backing it up as individuals or together to incapacitate those who would deny them.

political freedom springs from combining with others to protect our common interests, to uphold whatever freedoms we demand be recognized. they don't come from any theory, anything inherent in nature, anything provable from logic, or from something god pre determined upon creation and told us.

yeah

i do know what you were saying.
Rights only exist if people acknowledge them and assert action to enforce them.

what i am trying to say is that they exist whether or not someone chooses to, or is able to, enforce them or not. Just as, if you were colorblind colors would still exist. If you were deaf, sound would still exist. etc...

I use Blue Wave, but don't expect one of THEIR silly taglines.

how would they exist?

how would they exist?

From...

Rights stem from ownership.

I use Blue Wave, but don't expect one of THEIR silly taglines.

what is ownership? and how do

what is ownership?

and

how do rights extend from ownership?

does my right to own this soda extend from my ownership of the soda?

un confuse me.

ownership

good question, maybe that is what you should be asking instead? no? ;)

To me ownership is something that belongs to you. For example, your body and anything growing from it.

Then there are "claims", which also creates ownership and could possibly be disputed, such as a piece of land or objects found in nature. And yes, i agreed that we can argue that those rights are harder to secure without others to agree and help.

and

it's not about your right "to own the soda"... it's about...
after you have acquired the soda voluntarily, it becomes your property (you now own it), and now you have rights to it. You can sell it, drink it, shoot it with a gun, whatever...it's yours. Just as the person before you had ownership of it and exercised their right to part with for whatever agreement you made. That's how it stems from ownership.

I use Blue Wave, but don't expect one of THEIR silly taglines.

An invention of human intelligence.

Insofar as consciousness exists in nature, the constructs of consciousness are likewise "natural". Human rights are an invention of human intelligence, and exist for all who understand them and respect them, and are assumed to exist by default for those who have yet to articulate their personal stand on the subject. They are expressly surrendered only through one's explicit and deliberate disregard or disrespect for them. A thief demonstrates that he has no respect for property and therefore surrenders his own rights to same. A murderer shows his contempt for life and forfeits his own.

Rights, sadly, are abundantly abused, but are only "lost" through our own misbehavior.

dynamite anthrax supreme court white house tea party jihad
======================================
West of 89
a novel of another america
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/161155#longdescr

Oh? For humans only?

"Human rights are an invention of human intelligence, and exist for all who understand them and respect them, and are assumed to exist by default for those who have yet to articulate their personal stand on the subject."

Walk up to a bear and take her cubs. what happens and why? How can they even get upset if they aren't human and don't understand what's rightfully theirs? that's truly interesting...

rights stem from ownership. Ownership is not an "invention of human intelligence".

i didn't realize we were separating rights based on species in this discussion. This discussion was about natural rights and how "they do or do not exist". So far, you say they exist. so do i. we are in agreement...

I use Blue Wave, but don't expect one of THEIR silly taglines.