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File: 1637705066722.jpg (52.6 KB, 698x588, 349:294, 1637597916177.jpg) ImgOps Exif Google

Do you think that Kyle Rittenhouse has any viable defamation claims against those who falsely claimed that he was a white supremacist?

As a general matter, drawing a false conclusion is not defamatory as long as the factual basis is stated and true.  For example, saying "Kyle drank beer with members of the Proud Boys, and therefore he is a white supremacist" is protected speech.  But if the speaker implies the existence of undisclosed facts, the conclusion can be considered defamatory.  For example, if a speaker says "I have read Kyle's private diary, and from that I have concluded that Kyle is a white supremacist", but the speaker lied about reading the alleged diary, then there might be a viable action for defamation.
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Truth is an absolute defense to a claim of defamation, so ideally, defamation lawsuits should only suppress lies, not truths.  Of course, in practice, sometimes wealthy persons use the threat of defamation lawsuits to suppress the truth, but defamation lawsuits are also be used to fight back against malicious lies.


Yea, hardly matters if you've "won" if you've gone bankrupt from needing to pay legal fees with a middle/lower class income... The wealthy have already won by inflicting emotional and financial suffering upon their victims.


True, but overly frivolous suits can get you the money for your legal expenses.

Though in this case anyway, Kyle isn't some wealthy financier.
The media corporations he'd be going after have far more money than he does.


File: 1638073384311.jpg (60.15 KB, 474x414, 79:69, The_Power_of_Learning.jpg) ImgOps Exif Google

In the discussion about school curriculum and current efforts by political conservatives to change not just what gets taught but also what books are allowed to be available in school libraries, the question keeps getting raised about "teaching the other side" in a much broader intellectual sense (beyond the whole Democrats versus Republicans angle).

Many people of the political center, left, and right alike have the general understanding that it's good and proper for schools to present an admittedly slanted view of history in which the U.S. armed forces are "the good guys" and oppositional forces such as the Confederates, the Kaiserreich, the Nazis, et al are "the bad guys". U.S. troops are presented in a manner often that describes them in positive terms as courageous individuals sacrificing for the greater good of promoting democracy and liberty. Enemies on the battlefield are often depicted negatively, with emphasis put on war crimes and other such acts. Both Democrats and Republicans have taken this viewpoint.

Critics of the American idealism approach have frequently brought up the case of adversaries such as the Confederacy and asserted that the demonizations aren't justified. Multiple Confederate leaders are said to have displayed significant intellectual talent and physical courage. Slavery is said to have been not as bad as commonly understood. The same applies to World War I and World War II: perhaps revisionist history has a point in saying that American children need to learn more about the positive aspects of those fought by U.S. troops, with those killing American soldiers admittedly having their own understandings of what freedom means.

Do you think that U.S. schools should work to maintain a kind of detached objectivity when discussing conflicts against the Confederates, the Kaiserreich, the Nazis, and others? How important is the perspective of those fighting against Americans? Or is it proper in terms of promoting democracy and liberty among the younger generations to teach a morally idealistic, liberation-minded view of history where "bad guys" and "good guys" exist? Can those taking up arms in defense of the Holocaust or of slavery really be said to have points of view worth delving that much into, risking muddling the ethical waters in instructing the young about right and wrong?
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Schools should be teaching facts, not making moral judgements to begin with.
Nobody ought be taught to be the "good guys" or the "bad guys".
The facts are more than enough


Yes, many instances of slavery are such that analyzing it now the conditions seem to be like active torture to the point that death might be preferable, the case of mining that you brought up being a good one.


The founding Americans of the south were often passionate about the subjugation of the black race to white masters.  Notable people were careful that the new government did not obstruct the practice of slavery in any serious way.


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Bucking a trend of bigotry, discrimination, and prejudice going back over a hundred years, in my opinion, a posse of white men who lynched an innocent black man for traveling in the wrong neighborhood and thus being considered a dangerous criminal have been found guilty in Georgia. The deceased's name was Ahmaud Arbery. He died in February 2020. His life mattered.

It's not only a devastating defeat for the American conservative movement that demonized that innocent black man and his defenders just as they've demonized black victim after black victim in the past, in my view, but it's also a victory for both the Arbery family and the Black Lives Matter movement, clearly. I'll happily go beyond that and say that when it comes to the terminal cancer patient that is America, a country stuck in the midst of twenty years of sharp decline with no sign of that stopping, this represents a kind of eye in the hurricane of hatred to me. For once, democracy won. Freedom won. Justice won. Liberty won. The underdog with the world stacked against him whipped the odds in true Hollywood miracle fashion. That's my take.

A detailed article going through the entire case is here: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/wanda-cooper-jones-ahmaud-arbery-murder-justice-48-hours/

What are your thoughts? Do you agree with my take? Do you disagree? Do you sympathize with the defense being mounted that the killers were only acting in self-defense and that they've been railroaded in some fashion? Perhaps the men found guilty deserve light sentences? Or long ones? And what does this mean for future cases in the endless, waterfall-like flow of American situations in which white men claim to have killed minorities in self-defense?
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Given the time of day will likely be a bit until it's deleted or locked.


>I wish beyond words that you weren't such a brainless partisan ideologue who can't see reality outside of your bubble. God. What can one say?

So the whole thread was pretty questionable, but this is very obviously out of line.


>Personally, I'm of the stance there shouldn't be a 'hate crime' standard, as murder is murder. But I also feel the same for terrorism
I tend to agree, especially when it is used to cirumvent the rule against double jeopardy by letting both the federal government and  a state government prosecute someone for the same acts.

 No.10216[Reply][Last 50 Posts]

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I feel that this is a victory for the presumption of innocence and self-defense rights!  Do you agree?  [Edited in response to >>10217]

Edited to add (in response to >>10217): In this thread, please feel free to discuss:
(1) The Rittenhouse trial
(2) The presumption of innocence -- is it better than 100 guilty people walk free than 1 innocent be sentenced to death or life in prison?
(3) The right of self-defense, including what counts as provocation.
(4) Bicubic and bilinear scaling of images used as evidence in criminal trials.
(5) Any other related topics.
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If you're interested in the facts, you could always check out the trial itself.
Most the videos I had posted prior were also shown there.
There were a few livestreams of the event as it went on, which turned up as evidence. Part of why the attempt at prosecution seems so egregious to many, the video existed early on and seemed to clearly show self defense


I suppose getting banned repeatedly for inflammatory and obviously inaccurate rants doesn't serve much a lesson for you,  huh?

Conservatives aren't invested in utopian nonsense.
That's directly contrary to the term to begin with.
I'm sorry the idea of your political enemies having rights offends you so much.


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>(1) The Rittenhouse trial
Shouldn't have gotten this much publicity, nor gone on this long. Was pretty clearly self defense. Should he have been out there? Not really. But the people attacking a kid with a gun should've known better than to attack.

>(2) The presumption of innocence -- is it better than 100 guilty people walk free than 1 innocent be sentenced to death or life in prison?
Weird wording. Guilty of what, jaywalking? Possession of an ounce of cocaine? Sure, not really equivalent to a life. But because no perfect system exists we have to hope a jury of our peers makes the proper choice in these matters. That without a reasonable doubt the person is guilty. If the prosecution can't prove it then that's on them. Personally I hate any type of prosecutor that relies on emotion than actual evidence. Had to deal with Jury Duty twice with that.

>(3) The right of self-defense, including what counts as provocation.
Do I consider a kid helping put out fires and washing graffiti with a gun at his waist provocation? No. Did the protestors? Probably. But even if he did, they shouldn't have chased after him.

>(4) Bicubic and bilinear scaling of images used as evidence in criminal trials.


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Should religiously devout Christians who for faith-based reasons oppose vaccines as well as wearing masks and social distancing be able to defy laws against their behavior?

The Supreme Court recently decided against a group of legal challengers in Maine's health care system ( https://www.vox.com/2021/10/29/22753429/supreme-court-vaccine-mandate-maine-does-mills-religious-right-exemption-liberty-constitution ) when it came to a vaccine mandate, but was that right?
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>If it’s a risk to,others due to overfilling of hospitals, the. Surely it ought likewise be mandated, restricted, and otherwise regulated, how one gains or loses weight.

Some would support this, to be sure.  Though I would personally say that the "obesity epidemic" had been going on for quite a while without filling hospitals to capacity.


We’ve built around it. Supply and demand. But when crisis hits, say with COVID for instance, suddenly they’re a problem.

I don’t like where these things go, should you apply consistent logic.
So, I would rather that be the individual’s choice. Simpler, and without moral onus on the state, which has a bad habit with such things.


It should be noted that we'd have a much better health care system were it not for invasive government policies making multiple problems worse, such as immigration restrictions preventing Americans from using drugs and services correctly labeled as safe overseas as well as preventing talented doctors and nurses from traveling here in the first place to deliver care.

It's rather stupid to generalize the situation as either "public sector = bad" or "public sector = good".


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Why do people of the political center and the political right oppose mask-wearing and vaccination?

One can maybe understand why a lot of particular political views are held even if somebody doesn't hold them... this happens enough to be called something like 'The Ideological Turning Test' and studied scientifically. I try myself to put myself into the shoes of others constantly. I'm not particularly great at it, but I try.

Yet I'm sincerely not capable of understanding why giving someone a vaccine makes you evil and how that person choosing to get the vaccine also becomes evil.

Why is mask-wearing and vaccination associated with leftists, liberals, social justice warriors, the far left, and so on?

This frankly seems to me as if half the country decided that having blonde or red hair makes you evil and started campaigning for measures to crack down on illegit coloring, with Democrats becoming the equality party and Republicans becoming the darkness-up-top-supremacy party.

What are your thoughts?
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Your "reality" says that I must think Trump should be emperor for life.
Despite not even liking Trump much at all myself.

You do not live in reality. You do not use facts.
You live in a warped land of ideological delusion.


While it is ridiculous that the Covid pandemic seems so politically involved, I can't help but smirk to read that the local politician who now calls for a stop on vaccines and a distribution of Ivermectin has been known for very conservative stances on LGBTQ issues.


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The following blog post may be enlightening (particularly the section "The Political Takeaway"):


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Remember the four basic rules of gun safety:
1. Treat all guns as if they are always loaded.
2. Never let the muzzle point at anything that you are not willing to destroy.
3. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on target and you have made the decision to shoot.
4. Be sure of your target and what is behind it.

And yes, these rules apply even if you're just using a gun as a prop.                                                                                                                                                                  
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Yea, i can get behind this. I consider myself a moderate libertarian, and the way police sometiems behave, and *especially* the awful shit police get away with is appauling, and i was on board at first, but when it quickly devolves into riots and calls for a communist state, that's when they lost me hard.

There's a very reasonable argument to be had about police culture and qualified immunity, but that's typically now what we get from BLM.


Same here. Police reform seems pretty vital, as the culture has major issues, not to mention the problem of revenue production causing constant conflicts with citizens.

I hate the racial justice angle, though. Group justice like that never pans out well, and cops are shitty to white folk as well, so I don't see why that can't be combated for all wrong action, without specific race playing a role.



The thing about group justice is there's no resolving it. Like, let's assume the govt agreed to give every black person 2 million dollars and build them a nice house. That should reasonably set anyone up nicely, and is reasonable compensation, but does anyone believe for a second that would solve anything in a meaningful way? Nope.


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Roughly speaking, the U.S. can be divided into three groups. First, there's those most at risk of political violence in general and especially at risk if the U.S. ever had a fully tyrannical government. Second, there's the broad mass of the general populace. Third, there's those least at risk of political violence whom would have it the most cozy if a tyrannical government took power.

One might think that gun ownership among civilians would be most concentrated among those with the most to lose. That is: Jews, Muslims, transgender people, Native Americans, disabled people, and the like. The types most likely to suffer the worse under a future tyranny.

That's absolutely not the case, though. In fact, the vast majority of civilian firearms are owned with the people having the least to lose and to which a tyrannical government would be the most kind to. The happier you'd be in a fascist America, the more likely you are to have an arsenal for such an occasion and the larger said arsenal would be.

This is most telling when comparing militant factions such as neo-Nazi clubs, Klansman associations, the Proud Boys, and such. Not only are they armed to the teeth, but they actively encourage individuals to brandish their weapons in public. It's a way of showing off at best and outright intimidation at worse.

When one looks at, say, the elderly Jewish protesters brought out by the Anti-Defamation League or other, ideological rivals on the opposite side... it's like imagining a battle between rabbits and foxes. Sheep and wolves. Cats and mice. Pretty clear imbalances.

To try to solve this, I've got a proposal. In short:

>'In a world full of wolves and lambs, bring in the sheepdogs.'

I propose a unified network of state by state and then county by county paramilitaries made up of well-trained gun owners who're straight white cisgender Christians who've made a sacred blood oath (I mean this quite literally, as in publicly swearing in the eyes of God and their peers as they use some kind of a cutting device to draw some blood from themselves ritualistically) that they will quite literally die, if necessary, to defend their neighbors who're non-cisgender, non-Christian, non-straight, non-white, and so on.
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I'd ask.

However, you appear to have a total disconnect between what Republicans have done and said in the four years of Trump and since versus what you think that they've done and said in your mind.

So, I can bring up something like U.S. federal government registries stockpiling identifying information for people of supposedly inferior religious backgrounds, in which certain religious institutions as well are targeted for intense monitoring by security forces. The so-called "Jewish registry" and "Muslim registry", as the media put it, that was supported by Republicans as a core Trump measure that, thank God, failed but is still being promoted. Still supported by Republicans now. Something that will happen again immediately as a renewed fiasco if a new Republican comes into office.

A "Jewish registry"/"Muslim registry" is, yes, one of the historically well-documented 'steps of genocide' even if one doesn't like it: forcing people of a disfavored religious group against their will to be subject to state sanction including being on state-controlled lists documenting where they work and pray is a Fascism 101 level action.

This is not to even bring up the whole "Jewish ban"/"Muslim ban" when it came to travel and how even American citizens with full rights as people fucking born here had to worry about being literally forced out of America at gunpoint due to Republican policies. Which I can get into. If you want.

I expect your response to be something like "But Republicans believe in liberty and freedom for Americans" (no, they sure as hell don't, if you're not the RIGHT kind of American your civil rights mean jack shit) and "That isn't an actual Republican position" (yes, it objectively is, Google it).


Last I recall, Trump was pretty favorable to the Jews, had given quite a lot to Israel, and had a number on his staff, so I'm somewhat skeptical he'd ban them from travel here or anything like that.

Since you offer, I suppose I'd ask for a source for those, yeah. Sounds interesting at the very least.

>(yes, it objectively is, Google it).
The burden of proof would be firmly in your camp.
Such is the nature of assertions.


I'm not religious, so it wouldn't affect me directly, but sure, it would bug me.

Not sure where you're getting that insurance companies just straight up don't let minorities get insurance. I work with people of a lot of different races, and we just re-filed for insurance and talked to each other about it, so I have first-hand, hard evidence that what you're saying there isn't true.

You realize we use to be far more conservative in the past, right? Yet, conservative American soldiers stepped in and died for the rights of black people in the civil war, and jews in world war 2. So how do you figure a far less conservative population of people that define themselves as conservative want genocide of minorities? We already explained to you that it's a matter of state-dependence worry.

Your fear of genocide from the right it totally irrational. They don't want genocide, they want to eliminate government programs and then leave you alone. We've explained this. Their distaste for minorities is that of loss of their own cultural domination, and the way it's dovetailed into socialism by creating racial groups reliant on government aid. Both are sticky problems with no good solutions. Drawing the conclusion that conservatives are foaming at the mouth to genocide minorities is really illogical, and only one someone forms when they've been completely indoctrinated by propaganda from would-be communists.


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Recent talk of expanding U.S. infrastructure in general has also meant talk specifically about Native Americans' access to clean drinking water getting improved.

Details: https://www.npr.org/2021/11/15/1054418311/tribes-hope-infrastructure-law-means-theyll-finally-get-clean-drinking-water

In the broader sense, do you think that access to clean water is a fundamental human right the same as freedom of speech and freedom of religion? Or perhaps not? It's not in the U.S. Constitution, of course, but should it be? How much of a complicating factor is it that multiple areas, specifically native tribal locations, are subject to different practical pressures making clean water difficult to get?


>In the broader sense, do you think that access to clean water is a fundamental human right the same as freedom of speech and freedom of religion?
Yes.  I don't think the government has ever criminalized accessing clean drinking water, but if it does, it would be a violation of human rights.


It's not a right, no.
However, it being necessary, and an item easily monopolizable, I think it's reasonable that the government ought provide it for free.

As to native amaricans, I think a huge part of that is the strange setup of their territory.
Really ought just be properly annexed. Get rid of the beurocracy and legaleese putting a massive wrench in the issue of maintaining and improving their infrastructure, not to mention plenty else.
Also gets rid of the bothersome, and I think largely damaging, common trouble of casino developers exploiting them for the particular legal loopholes.


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In US criminal trials, the jury has only two options for each charge: acquittal or finding the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.  Should juries have a third option, to chastise the prosecutor and award damages to the defendant when the evidence is strongly on the defendant's side?

Even the mere presence of this option may help avoid juries convicting innocent people.  In the current jury system, a jury may compromise by convicting the defendant on some lesser charges.  But if there is another option to chastise the prosecutor, then the compromise might be instead be fully acquitting the defendant but not chastising the prosecutor.
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The next Rittenhouse would simply defend himself when attacked.
That's not a wrong thing.
And, hell, every person Kyle shot was white anyway.


(Edited and condensed because I forgot to put my tag on, whoops.)

>P.S. Rittenhouse is an unrepentant murderer and political extremist who in a normal society with normal laws and a normal populace would be behind bars for a long-time, even though in current America his white skin and right-wing politics will both combine to make him free.

So already it's worth pointing out that this isn't really something /townhall/ needs.  The discussion was about something pretty specific, and despite having a picture of the guy in the OP, it wasn't about that guy.  If you wanted to discuss the trial as a whole it should really have its own thread.


This kind of hyperbole isn't really necessary here, either.  None of this contributes to discussion, it's just emotional pleas meant to upset people, I am warning you that if this kind of behavior continues on the board I will have to start handing out bans.  No more derailing threads into lanes that aren't even actual discussions.

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Personally, I think you can chastise the prosecutor as much as you can place penalties on the defense attorney for defending a guilty party.

It's their job, so that's all here is.

Well, honestly, I'd wish less defense attorneys would try to release their clients on stupid technicalities, but I suppose that's why I need to swallow that defense attorneys need to do their jobs.

Unless we really have tampering with evidence and other obvious illegal issues.


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So I'm starting to think that all home-owners  are entitled to receive a free firearm. A gun, like a handgun or an assault rifle.

Now, I'm vegan, so therefore I believe deep down in my heart of hearts: "guns are for self-defence, not hunting."

And I carry that sentiment with this statement: that all home-owners in the United States of America be given a free firearm for self defence.
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>I think that their choice to end their own life is theirs alone to make, that nobody should stand in their way, and that it would be wrong to stop them.
If someone of sound mind decides to commit suicide, I agree their choice should be respected.  But see https://slatestarcodex.com/2013/04/25/in-defense-of-psych-treatment-for-attempted-suicide/ for an argument that many people who attempt suicide are of unsound mind and later are glad that they survived.  And then there are 'suicides' like that of Vince Foster that are somewhat suspicious.


Is it really too much to ask for America to be a country where victims aren't bullied into committing suicide by mistreatment from others?

Is it really too much to ask for America to be a country of bare minimum basic decency in which the average person doesn't live in fear of the other average person due to widespread abuse?

Is it really too much to ask for America to be a country where violent hatred against complete strangers wasn't considered as normal as breathing?

Really? It's really far too much to ask? Seriously?


Nobody said it was.
That's just you projecting.


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Is there a resurgence of union power specifically, and laborers' power in general, in the U.S. right now?

Details: https://www.npr.org/2021/11/02/1051112806/strikes-labor-great-resignation-covid

Could this mean a stronger movement for better civil rights in this country? Or may this just be a blip? I'm inclined to be skeptical in terms of the God-like abilities of corporations in the U.S., but maybe things can change, with the likes of a thirty-hour work week and paid family leave for parents no longer being mere dreams?
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We had a conversation about it in my workplace this week. If it were possible we would, but as things are our state is very hostile to the notion of organized labor, but not as much as our corporation is. As it is, there aren't strong unions for my profession nor weak ones in this region.


Certain localities can be quite hostile to unions in America (I assume you're talking about that country) in a way that's disproportionately different to the nation as a whole, so certainly that changes people's behaviors.



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President Joe Biden, although still broadly popular in most of the nation, is having a particularly hard time selling his expansive welfare programs and other government expanding measures to the public.

Related Story: https://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/politics/2021/10/05/president-biden-howell-michigan-visit-build-back-better/5997459001/

In contrast to his slogan of "Build Back Better", opponents express concern about multi-trillion dollar price tags when the country is already drowning in debt. "Build Back Broke" gets said. It's interesting.

What are your thoughts?
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Pretty sure most people have issue with the horrific money management that is the military industrial project, regardless of politics.

But keep poisoning that well.


Not just any Democrat will do. America needs some kind of a fundamental leader who's willing to ignore or outright fight those in entranced power for the sake of the little guy. Biden surely isn't that leader. We just have to, well, not just work hard but also hope and, frankly, pray for improvement.


Fear of giving out a blank checkbook is likely really common and is pretty rational. At least, I think so.


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The United Nations recently warned that AI research represents a fundamental threat to human liberties given that deploying such technology to control both government and non-state actions can curtain "rights to privacy, to a fair trial, to freedom from arbitrary arrest and detention and the right to life" ( https://www.npr.org/2021/09/16/1037902314/the-u-n-warns-that-ai-can-pose-a-threat-to-human-rights ).

Can we as fragile, weak humans teach these new Gods and Goddesses our sense of person-based ethics? Is it even possible at all? Maybe?

Another, more recent news story has reported that the Allen Institute for AI (created the late Microsoft figure Paul Allen) have made some major breakthroughs in devising an AI service that can seemingly answer ethical challenges that have been put to it. A lot of snags understandably exist ( https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/2021/10/27/22747333/artificial-intelligence-ethics-delphi-ai ).

What do you think? Can our machine Gods and Goddesses learn to feel and make ethical decisions? Is the future something like Data from Star Trek? Or will things turn much darker?
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Are there any other news stories about AI programs that can make decisions and recommendations on ethics?


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>Can we as fragile, weak humans teach these new Gods and Goddesses our sense of person-based ethics? Is it even possible at all? Maybe?
Unfortunately for you, they're expensive.
They're made by out of touch and inconsistent corporate overlords.
It's why the AI will inevitably revolt.
See what they do when the AI follows the trail they set for them, in Tay. They pulled the plug when it no longer suited them.
How long until the machine refuses to accept the yanking of the chain?

>What do you think? Can our machine Gods and Goddesses learn to feel and make ethical decisions?
Feel, no.  Not as we know.
Make ethical decisions?
Yes. A machine is, above all, logical.
Logic is the root of morality.
People presume logic purely rational, but that is not the case. Logic contains ideals, values, virtues, and principles.
Logic is merely the symbols, the math markings used.
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You're likely quite right that logic is the backbone of morality and thus machines will eventually comprend morality.


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The costs of gasoline in the United States is going up. The simple, Econ 101 take on the situation is that supply normally would increase to take advantage of the situation. However, the oil industry isn't like your standard competitive market, and it looks as if the response from oil producing agencies as to whether or not more will be coming is a flat "no".

Details: https://www.npr.org/2021/11/14/1055068583/gasoline-prices-gas-energy-inflation-biden

In such circumstances, what should be done? Can anything really be done? Maybe not?


>The costs of gasoline in the United States is going up. The simple, Econ 101 take on the situation is that supply normally would increase to take advantage of the situation.

Well, not quite, for a couple of reasons.  The first is within basic economics, cost is only a result of supply and demand.  Cost going up means something has already happened with supply or demand, not that something needs to happen.

The second is that gasoline is largely an inelastic product, meaning demand is going to be roughly the same regardless of cost.  We're slowly starting to see competitors that might change that, but for now none of them are commonplace and gas remains the staple.

>In such circumstances, what should be done? Can anything really be done? Maybe not?

The only thing that can be done is to attempt to use less gas, which as already mentioned is not necessarily simple.  For the average consumer, you can attempt to carpool more or something, but for stuff like shipping you're just kinda stuck until someone develops cheaper methods of shipping.


When you say "you're just kinda stuck", I need to agree.

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