May 2008

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Yip, we all have our addictions. Some are more dangerous than others, but thankfully the majority of the human race know how to curb their interests before they become damaging.

... and something should really be done about those musician's, they are out of control!


So me, as artist, I'm sick?
I always suspected so, thanks for the confirmation ><

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Jeez, who pissed in everyones' cocopuffs?!? Such a surly bunch!

and Jeff, re: working at Kraft:

Not everyone can career track and find employment based on ethics alone. Some of us have to take jobs out of desperation. I did, at Kraft no less, and I sleep just fine.


I have a sneaking suspicion that you haven't spent much time in Wisconsin.

Indras Net ;-)

Is it worth even asking the free will question? It seems that I can choose A or B and if I choose I see the results. Even if we argue that the result of my decision can be determined by the exact state of the world before it was made I don't think it makes much difference. I'd be surprised if it was otherwise, but the state is so complex that we currently cannot even start to comprehend it completely and so chaotic that we'd have to comprehend it completely to have any chance of prediction.

We may as well act as if we have free will. If I rob a store or something then argue to the judge that I had no free will then the judge would just argue back that he has no free will but to put me in prison. I'd expect a judge to be less lenient to someone who tried that. Whichever way as we move onwards it seems that our 'choices' have outcomes that in turn effect us.

Maybe I don't have free will to decide that, or someone else doesn't have free will to decide not to do anything and leave it to chance. What effect would lack of free will actually have on your life?

(Indra's net is probably simplistic unless you account for the speed of light between the reflections and that more distant reflections will be weaker. I'd also be tempted to add a lot more string making it more Indra's Tangle. It's a nice picture though)


I thought such a place already existed. Didn't you just describe Reno, California ?

Allen Anderson

According to your theory against free will, I simply wouldn't have a choice as to what I do. Ethnicity and morals would merely be out of fear of society, which would entice us to act differently. However, money can be used to control others, who evidently have no free will. So if free will is just an illusion, everyone in that situation would open up a casino.

Chris Marshall

There are no ethics in a world without free will.

Is it ethical to play the philosopher with fans and followers, then hide behind a jester's mask when confronted with serious philosophical objections to your "no free will" theory?

The Chinese say: when there are no tigers on the mountain, the monkey declares himself king. ;)

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Lamont Cranston

As a moist robot, whether or not I open a casino under these circumstances is predetermined by my programming, so it's neither ethnical, nor unethical.

I'm just following my program.


Bill Tkach

I think by file sharing, we reduce the value of the lottery, since current rockstars won't make as much since all the illegal downloaders are gorging on free music. This reduces the appeal of the lottery, since you don't get as much cash. Furthermore, by reducing the value of the lottery, the addiction people feel toward becoming the next great star will dwindle, and in the end you will save lives, reduce drugs sales and usage, and create a more bountiful proletariat.


Is it ethical to open a liquor store?

Steven McDaniel

This 'superstition of free will' is something I haven't been interested enough to investigate, but wouldn't I be able to say I couldn't resist the temptation to take advantage of those losers, by the same token? Besides, I would only feel good if I saved someone from becoming an insurance actuary, and thereby losing their soul...


Lol well if we assume free will exists, that doesn't negate the fact that people can still be tempted to choose something more often than they would without the temptation. I believe in moral obligations to not take advantage of all the idiots out there . . . lol


From now on I will only go to concerts to try to give financial advice to the bands.


If we do not have free wills (to be more precise, if we are not free moral agents), than we who claim to believe in free will cannot not believe in free will.

Nor can you, who claim to not believe in free will, actually know, or even believe, what you claim to believe and know.

If we were indeed "moist robots," we could neither know nor believe anything at all.

Your continuous effort to convince others ... and yourself ... that free will does not exist is self-referentially incoherent.


Maybe we should just tax creativity as a 'sin' tax in hopes of curing people of this anti-social, anti-corporate behaviour.

In a sense, we already do. There is a world-wide acceleration of practices which promote, and encourage the rise of creative spec work in so man fields. It can be as seemingly small as the artist willing to sign over rights in exchange for a 'publicity opportunity', or as subtle as industry-wide expectations from creative workers to work 'round the clock in order to achieve work demands, or as big and blatant as the Olympic Committee moving from directly commissioned identity design work to an open contest for the 'opportunity to be famous'.

Why are so many people willing to risk chunks of their life, talent and even reputation for just a chance of making it? A creative career of some sort is the choice career-style of so many people, young and old because creative work is highly-addictive. It just is.

Art schools recognize this--and continue to flood the markets with fresh, under-employed and easily exploitable talent willing to undercut established pros in a heartbeat.

Interestingly, business leaders continue to trumpet the value of creative and innovative thinking in design, engineering, and so on. But why don't we see that reflected in the actual way creativity and innovation are treated in the workplace? Because the products of creativity can be valuable, but the talent from which that springs has (thanks largely to the global marketplace) become more and more affordable, replacable, each passing minute. Content has never been cheaper to produce-- and therefore more profitable to distribute and own. That just puts much more about creative quantity of creativity than quality. Commodification. We've become so conditioned to the 'truth' about short attention spans, it usually doesn't pay to reach for quality 'art' if you can flood the market with commodified content. And it's so easy with everyone so eager to sacrifice any talent for self-expression in exchange for a chance to get their creative fix.

"Meh, whaddaya gonna do?"


Adrian D.

Are you (like most casinos) actively concealing how much the people have already lost? It's an important point. If you were to create an illusion that the ground extends past the edge of a cliff, you are responsible for people falling off.



If you wanted to up the evil a bit, you could do two things:

1) Open the casino and make $$.

2) Start several companies, churches and other operations who would help compulsive gamblers stop gambling, for a reasonable fee.

Everyone wins. The gamblers have an outlet for compulsion. The ones who want to quit, have an opportunity to do so.

You make $$.


OMFG, dude. Boring.

Joshua Jacobsen

I have a few friends who are floundering musicians. I also have two friends who were pretty successful (were in a group called Sugarbomb).

The floundering musicians... I'd have to say Scott is spot-on about them. They're pretty much drunken party-goers who use music as an excuse for basically being unemployed. The best of them has written like 8 songs in the 6 years that I've known him, and all of them are pretty short. (i.e. I can listen to all of his work three times during one normal commute -- about 30 minutes) I don't think any of the other guys have even completed a single song.

The two successful musicians I know... they're in great shape, have a good "day job", perform a few days a week, and generally have a mountain of motivation and energy. They're a few years older, but totally unlike the floundering musicians.

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