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Subjectivism vs. Objectivism, Benoit vs. Helfeld, Debate

Subjectivism vs. Objectivism, Benoit vs. Helfeld, Debate


http://youtu.be/-fgQGipGPls



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Interesting Topic - Great Debate!

Great job to both sides. Two intellectually honest people coming together to exchange their ideas. I'd watch either of you guys debate anyone, and I hope to see much more soon.

I wish there were Agreed Upon Definitions. This debate gave me a new appreciation for that period of defining terms at the beginning of books and other discussions - once everyone can agree on WHAT they're talking about, then they can set to finding out whose interpretation more accurately describes that 'What'.

Objectivism is defined by wiki as "a closed system that is not subject to change" with a central tenet that "reality exists independent of consciousness".

The objectivist has to prove that reality can exist without consciousness, and the only way to do that is to define consciousness and its origins either in FACT or at least in LOGIC, which I don't believe happened in this debate. No one has been able to answer that question scientifically.

There are, however, logic-based answers which I believe hold water and negate objectivism. One of which is in Benoit's explanation that

God transcends physical reality, gives rise to physical reality, and thus disproves the tenet that physical reality can exist absent consciousness.

Benoit's point being that objective reality DEPENDS on God's subjective consciousness for its existence. I think Jan's idea that physical reality has always existed is less believable. Everything in physical reality has a beginning, why would that NOT apply to physical reality itself ?

There was some confusion on the usage of some terms which i had hoped the moderator would have caught and cleaned up, but it was still a good show. I think Benoit was objectively correct, but I think Jan argued his case more soundly and therefore won 'the debate'.

Jan & Mike: Please do another debate soon: A Rematch? A New Topic? A New Debater ?

"If you always lean on your master, you will never be able to proceed without him." - Jefferson to his daughter Martha. March 1787

Good Topic

http://www.dailypaul.com/280349/thinking-critically-about-th...

For Freedom!
The World is my country, all mankind is my brethren, to do good is my religion.

Jan Helfeld's picture

Thank you for your support and comment.

Thank you for your support and comment.

Jan Helfeld

Helfeld won the debate.

At the outset, the aim of Mr Helfeld appears to match the premise of the Mr. Benoit: To show that subjectivists engage in contradictory thinking.

Jan Helfeld's picture

Thank you for your support and comment

Thank you for your support and comment.

Jan Helfeld

As much as...

...I end up mostly disagreeing with your positions in the AnCap debates, I'd have to say the opposite is true here. :) There is only one Truth or reality, and all our perceptions are mistruths to one degree or another, due to our limitations. But that singular Truth exists.

Would be intriguing to hear how you proceed from the axioms you mentioned to believe that the Something which is reality is impersonal rather than personal (assuming I understood your position correctly.) Maybe a debate on theism with someone down the road?

Thanks for sharing the debate with us.

Jan Helfeld's picture

Thank you for your support of debates and comment.

Thank you for your support of debates and comment.

Jan Helfeld

Jan Helfeld's picture

For the deep thinkers.

A debate For the deep thinkers.

Jan Helfeld

While he conceded the argument, he makes a critical point

That Ayn Rand missed. The importance of construction in demonstrating truth.

Subjective perception does not mean

Subjective perception does not mean subjective reality.

1) The opening statement by Benoit confuses perception with reality and therefore invalidates his points.

2) Benoit's position that God is subjective and therefore reality is subjective is both unsupported in the premise and unsupported in its conclusion.

3) Benoit confuses matter with objectivism. Cannot a spiritual existence (without matter) (or energy) be objectively present? His claim is not clearly stated nor is it supported.

4) Benoit's fourth point that two observers cannot observe matter (which is always in motion) at the same instant again confuses perception with reality and in fact he implies by his argument that there is an objective reality (but it is never observed the same by two viewers).

I've rarely seen someone fail so utterly to make an argument in a debate. I can only assume that he failed to grasp the claims of subjectivism before attempting to debate it.

Jan Helfeld's picture

Subjectivism is a hard case to make.

Subjectivism is a hard case to make.

Jan Helfeld

Define exists.

Define exists.

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

Subjectivity vs.objectivity really

depends on what the meaning of 'is' is.
-Bill Clinton, 1998.

Jan Helfeld's picture

It is defined ostensively

It is defined ostensively, it is self evident, open your eyes and look, is there something or not. Existence makes definitions possible, not the other way around. To define it in terms of something that exists would be circular reasoning.

Jan Helfeld

Other than nothing

There exists something. If there exists nothing, then one thing exists.

Joe

Jan Helfeld's picture

Do you think nothing is something?

Do you think nothing is something?

Jan Helfeld

I think

If I think then that is something.

If there was ever nothing, or if there may be nothing after I stop thinking, then there are two things.

A list of things:

1. Thinking

2. Nothing

Thinking is a thing that is proven by the fact that I am now thinking, or if you are going to argue about my ability to think, then that is what you do when you are thinking, but the word (think) is a third thing, the word is not the thing.

1. Perception (or thinking)

2. Words

3. The absence of all things including the space where things exist

Your question appears, in my mind, in my thoughts, in my field of view, as a paradox.

"Do you think nothing is something?"

What I think is one thing.

What you claim to be my failures, as to my answers to your paradoxical questions (as I see them) is another thing.

1. My perception

2. Words

3. Your perception of my perception conveyed with words

4. Apparent paradoxes

5. My offer as an answer to your question

6. Your perception of my offer as an answer to your question

7. Nothing at all, which is a thing, alone, before or after one other thing exists in time and place

Modern work:
http://www.math.hawaii.edu/~dale/godel/godel.html

Ancient work:
http://mathworld.wolfram.com/ZenosParadoxes.html

I have spent my life working labor, all I can offer is my very limited experience in a short, but fun, life.

Joe

I enjoyed watching this talk

So I'll just bump this until I have something intelligent to add.

.

Hear, O Israel: YHUH our God YHUH one. And thou shalt love YHUH thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

Accurate accounting?

If someone willfully intends to convey false information over, and over, and over, and over again, will someone reach the point at which they begin to believe their own lies?

If someone intends to be ignorant about their own willful choice to lie, to themselves, when will they know they are successful?

Joe

Jan Helfeld's picture

Check your premises.

Check your premises in the debate.

Jan Helfeld

from the Lucifer's Lexicon:

check your premises, phrase. - Don't check anything else.

Here's another one:

Objective, adj. - In accord with the subjective feelings, opinions, or prejudices of an Objectivist.

“The welfare of the people in particular has always been the alibi of tyrants.” — Albert Camus

Jan Helfeld's picture

Can nothing do something?

Benoit thinks nothing can do something.

Jan Helfeld

Jan Helfeld's picture

Things are what they are.

Things are what they are. Do you agree?

Jan Helfeld

It's the tired old idea

of ontological materialism raising its ugly head again, even though it is one of the most idiotic ideas ever to come out of philosophy.

Jan Helfeld's picture

I am not a materialist.

I am not a materialist. Did you see the debate?

Jan Helfeld

The problem is, your specific

The problem is, your specific objectivity appears to be built off some kind of subjective/illogical foundations.

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

Jan Helfeld's picture

Existence exists.

Existence exists. Do you agree?

Jan Helfeld

from the Lucifer's Lexicon:

Existence exists, phrase. - A truism uttered by those who fail to understand that all tautologies are tautological.

“The welfare of the people in particular has always been the alibi of tyrants.” — Albert Camus

Jan Helfeld's picture

Existence is defined ostensively

Existence is defined ostensively, it is self evident, open your eyes and look, is there something or not. Existence makes definitions possible, not the other way around. To define it in terms of something that exists would be circular reasoning.

Jan Helfeld

ostensive definitions for universal sets

ARE circular

“The welfare of the people in particular has always been the alibi of tyrants.” — Albert Camus