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A place to discuss topics/games with other webDiplomacy players.
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ssorenn (0 D X)
27 Jun 14 UTC
who wants to game?
WTA,ANON,24 hour phases, and FULL PRESS

1 reply
Open
Yellowjacket (835 D (B))
27 Jun 14 UTC
(+1)
On nationalism and immigration
Seems legit:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QsPDT5qHtZ4
0 replies
Open
Kallen (1169 D)
26 Jun 14 UTC
(+1)
Coastal Movement
Normally, when two units make a move to each other's territories, it causes a bounce (Rhur moves to Munich while Munich moves to Rhur). However, would coasts be treated as different territories for fleets? For example, could a fleet in Spain (nc) move to MAO while another fleet in MAO moved to Spain (sc)? Same with Bulgarian coasts and Constantinople. Thanks in advance!
14 replies
Open
mapleleaf (0 D X)
25 May 14 UTC
(+1)
Elliot Rodger shoots a whole bunch of students.
Thank God they were all americans. 6 of them died. Hee hee. U.S.A.! U.S.A.! U.S.A.!
211 replies
Open
obiwanobiwan (248 D)
22 Jun 14 UTC
The Favorite Author Tournament: THE FINAL FOUR!
OK, sorry for the delay...and the continued delay--we'll start Midnight tonight. ORWELL! DICKENS! POE! TOLKIEN! Who will advance?

And a bonus question, just for schnicks and giggles--what's the first book you read after high school (or, if it was a while ago, the earliest book you can remember reading after high school?) Just curious to see what we get.
136 replies
Open
Kallen (1169 D)
27 Jun 14 UTC
(+1)
America Hate Thread
Putin, mapleleaf, and anybody else who feels the need to express disdain about the US, please feel free to share your feels in here. Everyone else, don't click open and have one less thing to piss you off =]
19 replies
Open
NigeeBaby (100 D (G))
27 Jun 14 UTC
You can put lip-stick on Ann Poulter but ........
http://www.salon.com/2014/06/26/ann_coulter_no_american_whose_great_grandfather_was_born_here_is_watching_soccer/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=socialflow
29 replies
Open
Dunecat (5899 D)
27 Jun 14 UTC
Starting a new game, my friends. It's been a minute.
New game, open to all. Classic map, 500 D buy-in, winner takes all.

http://webdiplomacy.net/board.php?gameID=143927
0 replies
Open
ILN (100 D)
27 Jun 14 UTC
(+1)
'Lazy Greeks' aren't so lazy after all
http://euobserver.com/social/124761#.U6wWJN4c02x.facebook

0 replies
Open
obiwanobiwan (248 D)
26 Jun 14 UTC
Worst Non-Sitcom TV Show You've Ever Watched? (4 Episodes Minimum)
Friends were raving about this Netflix show, "Orange is the New Black." Watched. ..It's awful. Wall to wall. The main lead (not the actress herself, she seems to be trying, at least) is like the adult equivalent of Bella Swann meets Every Yuppie Character Ever. Every character's a stereotype. Every guy is a perv, sex-crazed ass, douche, OR just has no life whatsoever. The writing is as bad as I've seen...and yet, this won awards? xD So, worst shows?
73 replies
Open
NigeeBaby (100 D (G))
25 Jun 14 UTC
Is it just me or .....
..... is there a lot of death and destruction going on at the minute.
91 replies
Open
ssorenn (0 D X)
26 Jun 14 UTC
JMO = King Mod
We all want to thank JMO for his service to the site.

No crying from the Mods!!!!!!!!!
23 replies
Open
glisbao (185 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
Populism and Democracy
I've heard in here that populism is the plague that affects democracy (the topic praising appeasement). I would like people to elaborate on the subject - how does populism undermine the democratic principles, and what can we learn about this in history?
56 replies
Open
ArmaGGedon (100 D)
26 Jun 14 UTC
live game
hi, someone to anime live game :P
3 replies
Open
NigeeBaby (100 D (G))
26 Jun 14 UTC
The link between having a large penis and self-confidence
Here is something you guys should all know something about, please share your thoughts if you've got the balls to do so :-)
11 replies
Open
peterwiggin (15279 D Mod (S))
25 Jun 14 UTC
Man walks into McDonald's with knife in back
http://www.latimes.com/nation/nationnow/la-na-mcdonalds-knife-back-20140625-story.html
12 replies
Open
rayanking (0 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
join fast victory 4 $$$
it's a great and a live game, it cost only 10 D and in classic map. So let the game start.:)
2 replies
Open
jmo1121109 (3812 D Mod)
18 Jun 14 UTC
Many open games
Today's number is 38. I suggest everyone check out some of the open games. Post here with any games you take over for the next 48 hours and you'll get reimbursed for them. PM me for anonymous games. Games with more then 1 banned cheater will probably be cancelled so don't join them.
58 replies
Open
Putin33 (111 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
Appeasement: unfairly maligned strategy?
I've been reading quite a bit about British & French foreign policy at the turn of the century, and it seems like appeasement (reduction of tensions through concessions) has gotten an unnecessarily bad reputation.
19 replies
Open
Tolstoy (1958 D)
22 Jun 14 UTC
(+1)
Can atheists believe in free will?
If our consciousness is simply a product of the mushy 3-dimensional circuit board we call a brain, governed entirely by the fixed and unchanging laws of physics and chemistry, is there any kind of free will? Or are all our decisions in life predetermined, like a computer program running through its code, simply responding to various inputs?
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"So in your view free will is nothing more than a useful illusion/social construct then President?"

i'm at a total loss to understand how this is derived from what i said
Putin33 (111 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
"Without free will there is indeed no ethics."

So what? What matters is what is true, not wishful thinking. By ethics people mean who they can safely blame for their behavior. Which is why Theodosius, I made the comment I made. As you can see from the comment from Fulham about who we should blame in the absence of free will. This is, in fact, what they are after.

If materialist free will types have to resort to mysticism to argue for free will, then I think that says it all. You can never get an all-sided picture of reality from personal experience alone.

fulhamish (4134 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
President I apologise if I have misrepresented your views. I guess that I must find them hard to follow, particularly in the context of Tolstoy's opening question; my fault obviously.
fulhamish (4134 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
Perhaps someone could clearly enlighten me on the materialist basis for belief in free will? Does it exist anywhere other than in the probabilistic quantum world? And what exactly does probability have to do with free will?

It is my view then that those who rely on a solely materialistic view of the world, belief in free will is a matter of faith. A faith ultimately rooted in an awareness of the ethical vacuum that must follow from the absence of free will.
Putin33 (111 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
Of course, free will is also logically incompatible with divine omniscient. But the catch-all term "faith" allows theists to dodge messy things like logical coherence.
it's not that it's a misrepresentation, that implies willful intent which I don't see in your post. I just don't understand where it follows from what I'm saying. can you elaborate on how you got to that conclusion for me?
"So what? What matters is what is true, not wishful thinking."

see I don't wholly agree here, in this particular context. if it's true that freewill doesn't exist, then it follows that there can be no meaningful way to make a deliberate impact on the world, and that meaning itself is, well, meaningless. you can observe someone else's life, like a movie, and learn plenty as a result, but if you can't use it it's ultimately useless. better, then, to accept a premise that may be false but allows for purpose
fulhamish (4134 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
At President to me you appeared to say that you do not definitively know whether free will exists or not. However, most of us assume it exists in our every day interactions; therefore, in a sense whether it actually exists or not is irrelevant. Have I got this correct? If so, this is what I described as a social construct.

Perhaps if I have you could have a go at answering the post I made in the interim?
PSMongoose (2384 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
(+1)
@Thucydides
"Without free will there is indeed no ethics."

I disagree.

First of all, I'll state what I believe ethics to be:
Ethics - A set of rules or behaviors that, when obeyed, will create a stabler and therefore more pleasant society.

Let us first assume that there is no free will; the mind is the product of a collection of atoms that move in ways beyond the control of a soul or conscience. Now let us assume (as it is widely thought) that evolution created for us a collection of atoms (called a brain) that will seek pleasure whenever possible. Think of it as a computer, but instead of computing something like the local maximum of a function, it computes the best course of action towards pleasure. Because ethics lead to a more pleasant society, the brain will obey the suggestions of ethics to attain more pleasure. There is also the argument that the brain is susceptible to habit; and because obeying ethics has brought pleasure before (say by the congratulation of a parent) the brain will continue to follow the proven path of ethics. Thus, in this scenario, ethical thought is possible without free will.
semck83 (229 D (B))
24 Jun 14 UTC
"Think of it as a computer, but instead of computing something like the local maximum of a function, it computes the best course of action towards pleasure. Because ethics lead to a more pleasant society, the brain will obey the suggestions of ethics to attain more pleasure."

So, there's a pretty huge equivocation here. Ethics (maybe) creates a more pleasant society *on average*; but there could easily be cases where violating ethics would create a more pleasant life for the individual. That's almost the whole point of ethics, actually. I'm not saying either that you can or can't surmount that, but you certainly haven't. The argument you've given is just a huge equivocation.

In any event, even if it weren't for this fallacy, your argument wouldn't really succeed against Thucy's claim. As an empirical fact, unethical behavior does exist (at least on any of the commonly accepted definitions of ethical behavior); so if the brain is a deterministic collection of atoms that seeks to maximize [whatever], then it is an empirical fact that maximizing that does not always lead to ethical behavior. Since your argument appears, at least, to argue the opposite*, this would appear to be a refutation.

*Actually, I'm a little confused about just what your argument is arguing.

One is left, at the end of the day, with the unenviable task of arguing that a different course of action would have been "best" when there was only one course of action available. Your example of the computer is instructive, I think, because we don't actually judge the outcome of a computer program or a mathematical procedure to be wrong in the moral sense, or for there to have been a "better" result.

I haven't really analyzed this subject as fully as I'd like to have, so while I have some opinions, I'll be interested to see the continuing discussion between you and Thucy. It appears to me that the argument you've offered, at least, is flawed.
Putin33 (111 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
How is ethical/unethical behavior an "empirical fact"? It's a social construct. Behavior is an empirical fact.

That's like saying the rules of chess are an "empirical fact". A meaningless statement. They have no ontological realness to them.
PSMongoose (2384 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
I didn't include the reasons for unethical behavior because I thought it would detract from my argument by reducing focus toward my main point - that ethical behavior is possible without free well.

But you are correct, I didn't not specify that Ethics does not [italics]always[\italics] provide the best outcome, especially the best immediate outcome.

Thucy was arguing that ethical thought was impossible without free will. I was arguing that it IS possible without free will. I was not saying that ethical behavior is the only possible behavior.
PSMongoose (2384 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
*free will, not free well...
semck83 (229 D (B))
24 Jun 14 UTC
@putin33,

Given any common system of ethics, there exists behavior that violates it.

@PSM,

I see. I'll mull this over / wait and see Thucy's response. I think he was talking more about whether (given the hypothesis of determinism) the category of ethics makes sense as we use it than whether, given a particular ethical system, people can conform to it. I'll grant that the latter is not problematic for a determinist, but I think the former remains quite interesting.
semck83 (229 D (B))
24 Jun 14 UTC
Yes, PSM; in certain situations in desert communities, the ethical implications of free well become complicated indeed.
bootmii (100 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
@semck83, @PSM: [Insert reference to the Well of Zamzam here]
Thucydides (864 D (B))
24 Jun 14 UTC
"You can never get an all-sided picture of reality from personal experience alone."

Except that personal experience is the only side your picture of reality will ever have, and nothing you say is going to change that.

"So what? What matters is what is true, not wishful thinking."

What "matters," you say? Whether something matters is a question of value and ethics. Ethics is not about who can we blame, it's about why should you get up in the morning.

Thucydides (864 D (B))
24 Jun 14 UTC
(+1)
No, PSM, what you are describing is ethics without ethics. An meaningless ethics, the execution of which is neither good or bad in an absolute sense. You have in fact shown clearly how it is that ethics are dead without free will. I don't mean that it's inconceivable that a deterministic world could contain creatures that talk about free will and ethics, which is the one you describe. I mean that such a world is a waste of time and is essentially non-existent. Nothing it contains has any meaning and the entire thing could be snuffed out of existence and it would be as if nothing bad happened.

If this is what you believe, you're welcome to your hollow, aimless beliefs. Nihilism is an actual cancer on the human soul.
PSMongoose (2384 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
So you disagree with my definition of Ethics, Thucy? In that case, what is yours?

"a deterministic world could contain creatures that talk about free will and ethics, which is the one you describe."
Actually I never specified that I was talking about a deterministic world. With Quantum Mechanics accepted, the world becomes impossible to fully predict. This world is likely indeterministic. However, there is thought about an 'srand()' (yes, the 'an' is grammatically correct there / for more information, see how randomness is handled in most programming languages) universe where the universe will have the same outcome every time - we just can't predict it. This universe is deterministic, but unpredictable from the perspective of the past.

"and the entire thing could be snuffed out of existence and it would be as if nothing [h]ad happened." (you do mean 'had,' right?)
I don't follow here. Couldn't a world with free will be likewise snuffed out "as if nothing [h]ad happened"?

"If this is what you believe, you're welcome to your hollow, aimless beliefs. Nihilism is an actual cancer on the human soul."
To be honest, I prefer my nihilism. Why? Well I'm having trouble putting that into words. Perhaps I'll write about it later.
Putin33 (111 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
@ Semck, "Given any common system of ethics, there exists behavior that violates it."

First you have to establish that any 'common system of ethics' exists, and there isn't just a hodge podge of individual psychological sensibilities about what behaviors are subjectively pleasing or displeasing.

Otherwise it's a lot like saying workers having 'false consciousness' is an empirical fact, based on a completely arbitrary and empirically unsubstantiated notion of what is 'true consciousness' for workers.

"Except that personal experience is the only side your picture of reality will ever have, and nothing you say is going to change that."

Even if true, there is no reason that side of the picture should be considered a remotely trustworthy reflection of reality. If you're skeptical about everything outside of your own perception, why aren't you skeptical about your own perception?

"Whether something matters is a question of value and ethics. "

Well it depends on what question you are trying to answer. If you're trying to answer the question of whether something exists, and your response to that is colored by whether your answer leads to outcomes you find pleasing, that response is really irrelevant to the question. So in that very practical sense, it does not matter. Lots of people like the idea of heaven, that doesn't mean that it exists or that their liking heaven has any bearing on whether it exists.

"Ethics is not about who can we blame, it's about why should you get up in the morning."

All other organisms get up in the morning just fine without bothering with these sorts of questions. We're no different than they except our big brains keep distracting us.

semck83 (229 D (B))
25 Jun 14 UTC
@putin,

First, note that the second 2/3 of your post were, I think, directed to Thucy, not me. Anyway, as to the part that was in response to me:

"@ Semck, 'Given any common system of ethics, there exists behavior that violates it.'

"First you have to establish that any 'common system of ethics' exists, and there isn't just a hodge podge of individual psychological sensibilities about what behaviors are subjectively pleasing or displeasing.

"Otherwise it's a lot like saying workers having 'false consciousness' is an empirical fact, based on a completely arbitrary and empirically unsubstantiated notion of what is 'true consciousness' for workers."

I think you're giving me credit for more sophistication than I actually intended. My point was quite simple. Take the ten commandments, which is a commonly-subscribed-to system of ethics. Define the ethical system as saying that something is wrong if it violates one of the commandments. Then since adultery does, in fact, occur, it follows that this ethical system is violated.

The analysis for most other systems is as simple.
Putin33 (111 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
But the selection of ethical systems is arbitrary. There is no reason given for assigning the label "ethical" to the ten commandments. It'd more accurate to say that it's an empirical fact that people do things you find pleasing, and list a set of rules of behaviors you find pleasing. And least pleasure is a feeling, based on the senses, and thus empirical. 'Ethical' is an undefinable abstraction and doesn't have any obvious correspondence to any particular behavior. You might as well say that playing baseball is unethical and thus it's an "empirical fact" that unethical behavior is occurring.

semck83 (229 D (B))
25 Jun 14 UTC
(+1)
Huh. So I see you've evolved since you were arguing that it was perfectly feasible for an atheist to ground an objective systme of ethics? Would that be fair? Or was that some other context in a way that I'm missing?

Be that as it may -- you're pretty well question-begging here. Whether the selection of an ethical system is arbitrary depends on a lot of big discussions that haven't occurred in this thread. None of them are relevant, though, to my initial claim, which remains the very modest one that any given, fixed ethical system (or any common one, anyway) does get violated (and that, therefore, it does not intrinsically follow from neurosicnece that behavior will be ethical, however that word is defined). A point Mongoose and I now agree on, I think.
Putin33 (111 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
I've considered the question for quite some time and no longer believe it is true. Perhaps it's a physical reaction to having to read Kant.

"None of them are relevant, though, to my initial claim"

They're relevant you're just bracketing the problem for now. So be it.
fulhamish (4134 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
If an individual takes the view that objective morality does not exist then they must also make room for the potential validity of each and every alternative subjective ethical position, no matter how 'distasteful' they might be. Perhaps it is unnecessary to give examples.
Putin33 (111 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
Most certainly. And those who believe in objective morality must take the view that democracy is unacceptable if it leads to the imposition of laws that violate the supposed moral visionary's notion of "objective morality". Indeed, why do we need democracy at all if objective morality is true? Just have someone with supposed knowledge of this "objective morality" decree laws and dispense with subjecting it to a popularity contest. A deeply authoritarian worldview that is hostile to compromise.

And recognizing the validity of other psychological dispositions matters little unless you go through life desiring to stand in judgment and condemn others all the time. Why must I personally approve of your ethical system anymore than I must approve of your taste in literature?
fulhamish (4134 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
Abortion, capital punishment, genocide......
Putin33 (111 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
Fulhamish when do you receive this visionary status of knowing what objective morality is? How did you determine your values were objectively moral?
Putin33 (111 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
"Abortion, capital punishment, genocide......"

Infanticide, capital punishment and genocide are all given sanction in the OT, so where did this objective morality come from?
Putin33 (111 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
Crickets.

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126 replies
rojimy1123 (597 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
Taking over CDs
I have recently taken over 2 positions in games where players left. I am wondering why my profile says I haven't taken over CD's at all.
8 replies
Open
obiwanobiwan (248 D)
20 Jun 14 UTC
Again--This is NOT a Christian Country...
http://news.yahoo.com/republicans-obama-must-defend-christian-values-192212780--election.html Christians live here--AND Jews, AND Muslims, AND Buddhists and Hindus and Atheists (fastest growing group!) AND dozens of others (including, hey, all those Native American tribes and religions...many of which were criminalized in part until the 1970s)...WHY? Why must Obama defend the values of a specific sect, when the Constitution clearly is anti-favoritism in terms of religion?
74 replies
Open
Birchford (167 D)
25 Jun 14 UTC
Parameter 'fromTerrID' set to invalid value '32'
Hello, has anyone encountered this error before, and if so do you have a fix for it? Thanks for your help.
13 replies
Open
dr. octagonapus (210 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
Commenting on ongoing gunboat games
I realise of course that you are not allowed to circumvent the no talking rule, like press via email or pm or f2f talking etc. but why is discussing the board in general disallowed? I get that I should not say who I am in the game but if someone is to talk about the board unbiased and without revealing who they are would this be acceptable?
23 replies
Open
ssorenn (0 D X)
09 Jun 14 UTC
Two team members per country game?
Would anyone be interested in creating a game, that each of the 7 clasic countries were comprised of two team members consulting together. I understand that only one can actually be listed in the game itself, but maybe create a side pot for the second team members that would pay out equally at end of game
236 replies
Open
KingCyrus (511 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
Boys State
Anyone familiar with this program?
5 replies
Open
Buzzle (1531 D)
23 Jun 14 UTC
multi-players
What if you have strong suspicions that someone is multi-playing in a game? Who do you contact to check into it?
38 replies
Open
fulhamish (4134 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
US constitution
I readily admit to starting from a low base on this one, but.....
23 replies
Open
SYnapse (0 D X)
24 Jun 14 UTC
Jihadists in Syria
Right now David Cameron is going on about the "threat" from Jihadists leaving the UK to go fight in Iraq and Syria.
Am I missing something? Why are Jihadists fighting in Syria a threat here? To me, it seems no more different than Orwell fighting in Spain.
28 replies
Open
obiwanobiwan (248 D)
24 Jun 14 UTC
Putin on Putin: An Open Invitation to Putin33 on the Russia/Ukraine/Syria Crisis
Welcome BACK, Putin33...my oh my, how the world of international politics has exploded since you last graced us with your presence...are you ready to decry your namesake for the scourge of the world that he is? Most assuredly not, but let this be an open letter and open invitation for you to give YOUR take on the whole of the crisis--and your namesake in particular--as so many have been wondering if you'd capitulate to common sense and call him out for the thug Big Bad Vlad is.
26 replies
Open
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