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Who is the Most Evil


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#61 Blue Beetle (Jamie Reyes)

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Posted 07 January 2011 - 01:25 AM

Watchmen ftw. The thing about their characters is that they are complex, and that is what makes them great. The Comedian was the only one who looked past the uselessness and the ridiculousness of the traditional hero, he saw how the world really was, not bad guys or good guys, he was only human. Plus he served his country, actually became an icon for America, one could argue that that makes him good. One could argue that that makes him evil. One could argue that that makes him a representation of the fallability of a nation, or specifically the US, or even just the Vietnam war. I mean, he did try and *insensitivity* two women, I'm not saying thats not an evil thing to do, I'm just reinforcing my opinion, that evil is most of the time, a point of view and can be debated either way.


"When you realize how much of a joke everything is, being the Comedian is the only thing that makes sense."

Watchmen is a masterpiece.

#62 Nilan

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Posted 07 January 2011 - 01:25 AM

Guys, please drop the religious debate. There are already like three threads for it and this isn't one of them. Seriously. Please. Stop.


Oops? Fine, I'll stop. The debate was still on-topic though...

#63 Ruinus

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Posted 07 January 2011 - 01:36 AM

Not really, evil is a point of view, so if they think that what they're doing is good, then from a point of view, they're not evil.


The only point of view that doesn't make them evil is their own, which is exactly what Skirmisher said.

What you originaly said:
That makes them not evil at all...

That is absurd. Example: A man thinks he is doing good by killing a man, on the grounds that the man has some terrible disease that can be trasnmitted, in this case, STDs. So he goes out and kills the person.

From his point of view he did a good act, however, objectively, he did an evil act, as he terminated the life of another person based on nothing more than flimsy reasoning and subjective data. Malum in se and all that.

#64 force_echo

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Posted 07 January 2011 - 05:24 PM

The only point of view that doesn't make them evil is their own, which is exactly what Skirmisher said.

What you originaly said:
That makes them not evil at all...

That is absurd. Example: A man thinks he is doing good by killing a man, on the grounds that the man has some terrible disease that can be trasnmitted, in this case, STDs. So he goes out and kills the person.

From his point of view he did a good act, however, objectively, he did an evil act, as he terminated the life of another person based on nothing more than flimsy reasoning and subjective data. Malum in se and all that.

From your point of view, from others point of view he might have done a good thing, you don't know if he was the only person who felt that way.

Yes, Watchmen is a masterpeice.

PS. People are still deist? I thought that died in the enlightenment era.

PSS. No offense... Just wondering....

#65 Ruinus

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Posted 07 January 2011 - 10:42 PM

From your point of view, from others point of view he might have done a good thing, you don't know if he was the only person who felt that way.


It doesn't matter, those people are also wrong. That they feel it was ok for a man with STD to be killed doesn't actually make it correct. Sure, sometimes evil is subjective and sometimes it is objective, but the idea that someone can't do evil simply because they think themselves good is absurd.

#66 force_echo

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 10:40 AM

It doesn't matter, those people are also wrong. That they feel it was ok for a man with STD to be killed doesn't actually make it correct. Sure, sometimes evil is subjective and sometimes it is objective, but the idea that someone can't do evil simply because they think themselves good is absurd.

You can't just say someone is wrong, you're not God, its your opinion, to think otherwise is sanctimonius.

#67 thetrekker

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 11:44 AM

*Listens to religious argument before standing up.

SHUT UP EVERYBODY!!!! You have threads for this, take them there, not here. Please? Besides, everyone knows who is the most truly evil of them all, Rafael Bombelli.

#68 Twogunkid

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 12:22 PM

Look at Ender's Game. I think that does take the question of intent for morality. I come to the conclusion that intent does matter. I am not saying it excuses evil. But it is less evil for like someone raised by radical Islamicists to hate Christians and learns that his whole life and goes and blows up a church is of less moral blame then if I who knows murder is wrong go and blow up a Mosque. Its still wrong, but it is more misguided wrong than evil.

#69 Nilan

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 01:39 PM

*Listens to religious argument before standing up.

SHUT UP EVERYBODY!!!! You have threads for this, take them there, not here.


Boo Hoo?

#70 Ruinus

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 01:44 PM

You can't just say someone is wrong, you're not God, its your opinion, to think otherwise is sanctimonius.


Nonsense. Somethings are objectively evil and don't require a point of view. *insensitivity*, slavery, murder, etc. Those things do not have a "point of view" to them (except in very exceptional conditions such as self defense in murder).

BTW your original statement is still wrong.

EDIT: I'm not sure how I'm being sanctimonius in that statement.

#71 sirmethos

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 02:37 PM

Nonsense. Somethings are objectively evil and don't require a point of view. *insensitivity*, slavery, murder, etc. Those things do not have a "point of view" to them (except in very exceptional conditions such as self defense in murder).


bull.

'evil' is a purely subjective thing.

if you look at history, pretty much all the things we consider 'evil', have at some point been an acceptable part of life.

slavery can be an act of mercy.
murder can simply be a day at work, or even a commendable thing.
even *insensitivity* has in some societies been a fully acceptable part of life. i'm fairly sure that the vikings didn't consider themselves evil when they attacked, killed and/or *insensitivity'd* the citizens of various villages and cities. the english noblemen likely didn't consider themselves evil, when they *insensitivity'd* newlywed women in taking their 'Right of first night'.
torture is another thing that is considered evil, but it has, and very well might still be, an acceptable way of extracting information from prisoners.


to repeat, 'evil' is purely subjective.

#72 force_echo

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 02:38 PM

Nonsense. Somethings are objectively evil and don't require a point of view. *insensitivity*, slavery, murder, etc. Those things do not have a "point of view" to them (except in very exceptional conditions such as self defense in murder).

BTW your original statement is still wrong.

EDIT: I'm not sure how I'm being sanctimonius in that statement.

No, my original statement is still right. And like I said, unless you're God, you can't really prove otherwise.

There are many cases where those things have gray areas. Soldiers murder, just because your country tells you to do something dosen't mean its intrinsically right or wrong, so depending who you are, its a matter of opinion. There are some cases, like murdering for fun, and basically all *insensitivity*, where yes, there is only one viewpoint to it, but unless the man is insane, a man who does something "evil" for a reason he thinks is good, is simply exhibiting another viewpoint.

Ex: *uncreative*, many people say he is evil, mainly because of the horrors of the holocaust. But he singlehandedly restored the pride and respect of his homeland, and brought it out of a deppression so bad that people were actually using German currency to keep warm by burning it. He helped an entire nation, and took abck what many people thought was wrongly taken from Germany.

#73 Ruinus

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 02:58 PM

bull.

'evil' is a purely subjective thing.

if you look at history, pretty much all the things we consider 'evil', have at some point been an acceptable part of life.

slavery can be an act of mercy.


Explain when.

murder can simply be a day at work, or even a commendable thing.


Which is why I said sometimes it's acceptable in very exceptional cases. You are, I'm assuming, refering to the work of soldiers and armies, and maybe even police officers who have to kill in defense of others. Of course, you could say that this is "acceptable", but it's not "good".

even *insensitivity* has in some societies been a fully acceptable part of life. i'm fairly sure that the vikings didn't consider themselves evil when they attacked, killed and/or *insensitivity'd* the citizens of various villages and cities. the english noblemen likely didn't consider themselves evil, when they *insensitivity'd* newlywed women in taking their 'Right of first night'.


So? I don't quite care if those people didn't think it wrong, forcing someone into sexual activities is never acceptable. The fact that some societies think nothing of it just shows how ignorant those societies are, not that *insensitivity* itself isn't a bad thing.

torture is another thing that is considered evil, but it has, and very well might still be, an acceptable way of extracting information from prisoners.


to repeat, 'evil' is purely subjective.


There's a difference between acceptable and good. Simply because something is acceptable does not make it good or makes it incapable of being evil. BTW, torture doesn't work:

There is a strong utilitarian argument against torture; namely, that there is simply no scientific evidence supporting its effectiveness.[91]

#74 Ruinus

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 03:08 PM

No, my original statement is still right. And like I said, unless you're God, you can't really prove otherwise.


Except morality doesn't come from deities. You can easily construct morality systems that don't require whatever god you believe in, so please, don't assume someone needs to be your religious idol to have morality or judge morality.

There are many cases where those things have gray areas. Soldiers murder, just because your country tells you to do something dosen't mean its intrinsically right or wrong, so depending who you are, its a matter of opinion. There are some cases, like murdering for fun, and basically all *insensitivity*, where yes, there is only one viewpoint to it, but unless the man is insane, a man who does something "evil" for a reason he thinks is good, is simply exhibiting another viewpoint.


Yes, soldiers, police officers and the like sometimes kill people. However, they don't go out and kill people just for the hell of it, like you say. And simply because their government tells them to do something doesn't remove good and evil from the equation. A soldier following an order that will kill civilians can't suddenly say "Well, I was following orders, so it's neither!". He can object and refuse to carry that order.

Ex: *uncreative*, many people say he is evil, mainly because of the horrors of the holocaust. But he singlehandedly restored the pride and respect of his homeland, and brought it out of a deppression so bad that people were actually using German currency to keep warm by burning it. He helped an entire nation, and took abck what many people thought was wrongly taken from Germany.


He also loved his dog, his wife, and was kind and friendly to his servants and some of his generals...

And then he also ordered several million people to death and forced people into slavery, forced drafts and conquered their homes. So what if he did some good along the way (in the sense that this "good" came about by terrible and vile means). Also, he helped Germany? Strange, because if it wasn't for him Germany wouldn't have been severely damaged in World War II.

Sure, the Depression was shit for the entire world, but the idea that some of *uncreative*'s actions were good because they helped take us out of that is also absurd. I mean, there are ways to solve economic depression that aren't warfare.

#75 sirmethos

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 03:22 PM

Explain when.



Which is why I said sometimes it's acceptable in very exceptional cases. You are, I'm assuming, refering to the work of soldiers and armies, and maybe even police officers who have to kill in defense of others. Of course, you could say that this is "acceptable", but it's not "good".



So? I don't quite care if those people didn't think it wrong, forcing someone into sexual activities is never acceptable. The fact that some societies think nothing of it just shows how ignorant those societies are, not that *insensitivity* itself isn't a bad thing.



There's a difference between acceptable and good. Simply because something is acceptable does not make it good or makes it incapable of being evil. BTW, torture doesn't work:

There is a strong utilitarian argument against torture; namely, that there is simply no scientific evidence supporting its effectiveness.[91]


i completely agree that there is a Big difference between Acceptable and Good, however, my examples were meant to show that the things we consider 'evil', have not always been considered as such.

if they were, as you say, Objectively 'evil', then societies would never have accepted them.

and it's not quite true that torture just plain 'does Not work', it is true however, that it is far from a reliable means of extracting information, and that one can be trained to resist it(to a certain point), or to give false or nonsensical information when one eventually breaks.

to use the continuation of your own quote "Those favoring torture have however pointed to some specific cases where torture has elicited true information.[93]"

#76 Ruinus

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 03:39 PM

i completely agree that there is a Big difference between Acceptable and Good, however, my examples were meant to show that the things we consider 'evil', have not always been considered as such.

if they were, as you say, Objectively 'evil', then societies would never have accepted them.


This assumes that all societies everywhere at everypoint in time have been able to sit down and think about their actions in reasonable ways. Your viking example for instance, you say that since the vikings (and several other ancient cultures) did such things then their acts cannot be evil, since otherwise they would have never done it.

I'm saying that it doesn't matter at all of the society thought it was acceptable, that doesn't make it any less evil or good. For instance, if tomorrow society decided it was no big deal to kill all people who post or have posted on this website it would be absurd to say "Well, society was ok with it, so it' must not be evil right?"

By saying that certains acts were accepted by some societies and therefore those acts are not evil you suppose those societies were infallible, capable of doing no wrong and perfectly able to reason out their actions with some sort of superman thought. As we agreed, there is a difference between acceptable and good/evil. Some societies accepted *insensitivity* as an everday thing. It was still wrong to do so, and a failure of that society.

and it's not quite true that torture just plain 'does Not work', it is true however, that it is far from a reliable means of extracting information, and that one can be trained to resist it(to a certain point), or to give false or nonsensical information when one eventually breaks.

to use the continuation of your own quote "Those favoring torture have however pointed to some specific cases where torture has elicited true information.[93]"



Specific cases doesn't make a trend. I could say the same of the following:
Some argue that shooting into a crowd with an automatic weapon is a good way to kill criminals that haven't been caught by the law. They cite specific cases where criminals were killed in such a manner.

Others say that there is no scientific validity to such a claim, that those specific cases were lucky.

If it's not reliable except in specific cases, then still torture is not a good way to go about retrieving information.

#77 sirmethos

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 04:05 PM

This assumes that all societies everywhere at everypoint in time have been able to sit down and think about their actions in reasonable ways. Your viking example for instance, you say that since the vikings (and several other ancient cultures) did such things then their acts cannot be evil, since otherwise they would have never done it.

I'm saying that it doesn't matter at all of the society thought it was acceptable, that doesn't make it any less evil or good. For instance, if tomorrow society decided it was no big deal to kill all people who post or have posted on this website it would be absurd to say "Well, society was ok with it, so it' must not be evil right?"

By saying that certains acts were accepted by some societies and therefore those acts are not evil you suppose those societies were infallible, capable of doing no wrong and perfectly able to reason out their actions with some sort of superman thought. As we agreed, there is a difference between acceptable and good/evil. Some societies accepted *insensitivity* as an everday thing. It was still wrong to do so, and a failure of that society.




Specific cases doesn't make a trend. I could say the same of the following:
Some argue that shooting into a crowd with an automatic weapon is a good way to kill criminals that haven't been caught by the law. They cite specific cases where criminals were killed in such a manner.

Others say that there is no scientific validity to such a claim, that those specific cases were lucky.

If it's not reliable except in specific cases, then still torture is not a good way to go about retrieving information.



i'm saying that when a large group of people didn't believe that it was 'evil', they didn't necessarily think it was Good, but not Evil. then it underlines my point, that 'evil' is a purely subjective thing.


as for the torture thing. it's absolutely true that there are no scientific proof that torture works. however, can you give me any example, whatsoever, of it actually being scientifically tested?


the psychological aspect of torture is a large part of its effectiveness, thus any scientific tests would have to be with subjects not knowing they were part of a scientific test, since knowing it was just an experiment would remove a large part of the psychological impact.

#78 Skirmisher

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 05:13 PM

slavery can be an act of mercy.

Not really, because there are many other things that that person could do that would be Merciful. Rather than Claiming another human being as their property, they could adopt them, or take them as a ward, or look out for them, or any number of things that would be Infinitely better then Slavery.


murder can simply be a day at work, or even a commendable thing.


In this I believe you are talking about Soldiers.

Good Soldiers Kill, Bad Soldiers Murder. A Soldier kills because he or she is forced to, in the name of Self Defense or Defense of the people who cannot defend themselves against their aggressor. If you must Kill in order to stop others from Killing then it's not Evil. However in the chaos of war, sometimes this gets grey, accidents happen, blood gets a little too hot. What turns killing into murder is taking away that need to kill.


even *insensitivity* has in some societies been a fully acceptable part of life. i'm fairly sure that the vikings didn't consider themselves evil when they attacked, killed and/or *insensitivity'd* the citizens of various villages and cities. the english noblemen likely didn't consider themselves evil, when they *insensitivity'd* newlywed women in taking their 'Right of first night'.

Vikings didn't consider the people they *insensitivity'd* to be human... it was more like bestiality to them, but not that bad because at least they Kinda looked like them. Even that's an Evil POV, as they were Humans, forcing themselves on other Humans, regardless of how they tried to justify it.

What the English Nobles did however Was Genuinely Evil. They attempted to literally Breed Out the Scots with that horrible law. That was their goal, so they made *insensitivity* Legal. There wasn't anything high and good about what they did. And I bet a fair amount of people thought the same.


torture is another thing that is considered evil, but it has, and very well might still be, an acceptable way of extracting information from prisoners.

Torture Never Works

You can do anything to them, and they will always say what you want them to say, regardless. If they aren't saying what you want them to say then you've not inflicted enough torture.

Saying that you need to extract vital information from a prisoner through torture is a Weak justification for it, as the validity of the facts is highly in question. Not only that but look at it's history, to see how it's abused. All the way back in the Spanish Inquisition, through even to Nowadays at Guantanamo. You know how may Innocent people they tortured?

#79 AVP vs The Terminator

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 05:31 PM

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#80 Ruinus

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Posted 08 January 2011 - 05:32 PM

i'm saying that when a large group of people didn't believe that it was 'evil', they didn't necessarily think it was Good, but not Evil. then it underlines my point, that 'evil' is a purely subjective thing.


And my point is that it doesn't matter, at all if the society that practiced slavery, or systematic forced sexual activities (since it blurs our the 4 letter word) didn't think it was evil. The act itself is still evil. That those societies at large think nothing of it does not change the nature of the act, (the removal of free option and forcing, oftentimes violently, sexual acts on another human being which may lead to a whole host of other problems ie pregnancy, STDs etc).

You are basically saying that the forced sexual activities are malum prohibitum, wrong only because our current society views it that way, but sometimes acceptable in other societies.

I am saying that it is malum in se, wrong because the act itself is wrong, no matter what society you come from, what era it takes place in.

as for the torture thing. it's absolutely true that there are no scientific proof that torture works. however, can you give me any example, whatsoever, of it actually being scientifically tested?


the psychological aspect of torture is a large part of its effectiveness, thus any scientific tests would have to be with subjects not knowing they were part of a scientific test, since knowing it was just an experiment would remove a large part of the psychological impact.


The closest I can give you are the cite pages on Wiki. This paper specifically points out how it might be hard to gather scientific data on this, and how previous investigations into the claims of torture working are hard to fund and to actually research. The fact that there is no scientific evidence for the claim that torture works, except in a few cases, is quite telling IMO. Specifically, people say "Here are the times it worked!"... but what about the times it didn't?




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