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zyphex
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#61
04-29-2014
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Originally Posted by davobrosia View Post
The cheating example is kind of a psychiatric unconscious compulsion description of the behavior, so if you take issue there/with the idea of an unconscious then the rest of the metaphor is going to fall apart. It does bring up the question of whether the things we do reflect the things we want, imo. Like if you know the highly probable consequences of an action and you do the action I am alright with ascribing some degree intentionality toward the consequences.It may not be conscious but it is nonetheless a useful conceptual schema in e.g. many (most?) forms of therapy.
I mean, this is useful in practice, but it is fallible. More often then not, if you do something which has a clear and likely consequence, then you most likely (or to some degree) intend for the consequence to occur. But the cheating example doesn't fit the mold for me. It may be the case he wanted to get caught. But it is definitely the case that he valued doing the thing and getting caught to not doing the thing; but he still may have valued doing the thing and not getting caught even more. I think we unnecessarily lose a kernal of the whole truth when we condense it into "He wanted to get caught." Just say "He'd rather get caught than not do it, but he'd rather do it and not get caught than get caught." All we can ultimately say is that the person thought it was "worth the risk, with the risk being high."

So what I am questioning is the usefulness of this simplification, because what I am seeing is a loss of some of the truth which is really vital to a correct interpretation of the story. I'm not sure I'm convinced telling a person "you preferred getting caught to not doing the thing" is worse therapeutically than telling the person "you wanted to get caught."

Quote:
At the gym so I can't reply at much more length, but it should be conceivable that a group of dynamic systems (people) interacting can give rise to emergent phenomena that can't be reduced to any one subset of the group (cf. Durkheim).
It is at least conceivable to me that a group of people interacting can give rise to emergent phenomena that can't be reduced to the intentions of any one subset of the group, including the entire group itself. However, I lean to the negative of the following:
A group of people interacting can give rise to emergent phenomena that can't be reduced to the actions of any one subset of the group, including the entire group itself. (I mean if they are emergent, they have to emerge from something; namely, human (inter)action.)

However, this is not to say that there isn't a two-way street (there is). Actions form "institutions", and "institutions" influence actions. So we can derive institutions from actions, but also derive actions (which represent values of the actor) from institutions. However, we ought not forget at any point in time that the institutions are nothing but a system of interacting individuals. (Semi-off-topic: A good piece I read a way while back critiquing methodological individualism was Nozick's "On Austrian Methodology" in Socratic Puzzles).

I suppose I'm just regurgitating Hayek: "It would be no exaggeration to say that social theory begins with—and has an object only because of—the discovery that there exist orderly structures which are the product of the action of many men but are not the result of human design."

Quote:
I'd say the Chinese aren't part of the system insofar as the system is the collective narcissistic impulse of those in America, i.e. he is describing it from the pov of the West because that's the social order he is criticizing. It is a stand-in term for the ideological dynamics of Murica. The System is the emergent narcissistic big-I/we. Deleuze on how Capital decodes all flows might help us agree here, but I can't look it up from my phone.
Alright, but I just don't think there is something specifically Murican about wanting goods at the lowest possible price/cost (I understand there is more to it than this, so I'm not throwing away his analysis on this). But a point I just want to keep clear is that US consumers do not create cheap labor; if they buy "Murican," the Chinese workers still get shit(tier) wages, albeit at a different job.

Quote:
Adding up the wants can = follow the money. If prices can have a relationship to demand (I am being vague here because I don't know economic jargon well enough not to be), e.g. we obviously want iPads but how much more would we really pay to improve conditions for workers overseas?
Jargon: Demand = the relationship between quantity demanded and price (i.e. the quantity demanded at various alternative prices).
In any case, it is a good question, but his example where we buy Murican does nothing to help Chinese workers (it actually hurts them). I don't think charity through refusing to pay low prices is efficient charity (or likely; although there are "fair trade products," so you could maybe study the demand of fair trade products to see how much people are willing to pay for this type of thing). A more direct form of charity seems preferable.

I think maybe you cut your thought short there, so I don't know if I responded appropriately.

Quote:
That it's not a psychological problem is an odd thing for a psychoanalyst to say. But nevertheless, that Bernie Madoff knew how to work the system is different than saying the system allowed him to do it, or that the system creates Bernie Madoffs, or that he is simply an extreme case of what the system creates. The system doesn't do anything, you do it all in reaction to the system. Bernie Madoff did those things because of... Bernie Madoff. To the extent that the institution itself is to blame, he should get less time, otherwise it is merely revenge; which it is, because there's no system: it is punishment handed out by individuals against another individual, or, more accurately, individuals manipulating the system to get the outcome they want.
Hey, this sounds like some methodological individualism (albeit we can talk about how institutions influence behavior as well). But now I'm still confused about the notion of "system," but you have supplied me with some additional things to read if I want to clear it up.

Question
Is there a specific point you'd like this conversation to hone in on? In responding, I think I'm missing the forest for the trees as far as what to get out of the discussion; so in hopes of making my responses more pointed, feel free to tell me precisely what is of your interest. I just feel that I'm a mile away from where we started, which was something to do about identity and responsibility for actions. I'm happy to continuing the discussion along present lines as well.

Edit: I read the Colbert article you posted
Quote:
I can say all this with confidence because, as far as I know, corporations and governments are made of human beings, and human beings are envious, petty, anxious, and above all mortal. What sets us apart from each other is how we manage those inherent flaws. All of their power is the power of individuals. When you say "Exxon tricks us by offering us a false choice of oil vs. unicycle!" you really mean that this guy is tricking you:
...

And don't let Zizek hoodwink you; he'll say that the power isn't in individuals but in the structure of capitalism itself-- the rules and the initial allocation of rights that results in the outcome you see--no one has to act deliberately. That makes for good theory, but Zizek doesn't believe it himself: it is still the execution by individual actors (who are part of the system, I'll admit) that must actively work to keep capitalism propped up. Otherwise, according to him, it would be gone by now.
...That article left me with the feeling that there is no system outside of individual actors....am I just seeing what I want to see?
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#62
04-29-2014
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Originally Posted by zyphex View Post
I think we unnecessarily lose a kernal of the whole truth when we condense it into "He wanted to get caught." Just say "He'd rather get caught than not do it, but he'd rather do it and not get caught than get caught." All we can ultimately say is that the person thought it was "worth the risk, with the risk being high."
but you're only actually assuming different things about how people operate with that statement; among them that people act based on cost-benefit analyses which crunch out risk-values, which doesn't conflict with the statement that "he wanted to get caught", it's just an underdefinition of it, dehumanized and useful for the purposes of rationalizing what are akin to social contract theories in hayek et al.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cursed Lemon View Post
Here's the problem - I am not a means to the end of rape culture, I am the end. I am literally the termination of this whole ordeal.
here's the problem

Last edited by PM; 04-29-2014 at 04:44 PM.
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#63
04-29-2014
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Originally Posted by zyphex View Post
I mean, this is useful in practice, but it is fallible. More often then not, if you do something which has a clear and likely consequence, then you most likely (or to some degree) intend for the consequence to occur. But the cheating example doesn't fit the mold for me. It may be the case he wanted to get caught. But it is definitely the case that he valued doing the thing and getting caught to not doing the thing; but he still may have valued doing the thing and not getting caught even more. I think we unnecessarily lose a kernal of the whole truth when we condense it into "He wanted to get caught." Just say "He'd rather get caught than not do it, but he'd rather do it and not get caught than get caught." All we can ultimately say is that the person thought it was "worth the risk, with the risk being high."

So what I am questioning is the usefulness of this simplification, because what I am seeing is a loss of some of the truth which is really vital to a correct interpretation of the story. I'm not sure I'm convinced telling a person "you preferred getting caught to not doing the thing" is worse therapeutically than telling the person "you wanted to get caught."
All I have at this point (posting at stoplights) is to say that the specific model of the mind in play here is one that has many often conflicting drives and impulses that only fit under the notion of a coherent "I" in name and for practicality. I know some models used in neuroscience have a triune model, so you might liken it to this.

Not to beat a dead horse and run defer to this dude constantly, but I like this allegory a lot:
http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2011/...boyfriend.html


Quote:
It is at least conceivable to me that a group of people interacting can give rise to emergent phenomena that can't be reduced to the intentions of any one subset of the group, including the entire group itself. However, I lean to the negative of the following:
A group of people interacting can give rise to emergent phenomena that can't be reduced to the actions of any one subset of the group, including the entire group itself. (I mean if they are emergent, they have to emerge from something; namely, human (inter)action.)

However, this is not to say that there isn't a two-way street (there is). Actions form "institutions", and "institutions" influence actions. So we can derive institutions from actions, but also derive actions (which represent values of the actor) from institutions. However, we ought not forget at any point in time that the institutions are nothing but a system of interacting individuals. (Semi-off-topic: A good piece I read a way while back critiquing methodological individualism was Nozick's "On Austrian Methodology" in Socratic Puzzles).

I suppose I'm just regurgitating Hayek: "It would be no exaggeration to say that social theory begins with—and has an object only because of—the discovery that there exist orderly structures which are the product of the action of many men but are not the result of human design."
Durkheim's "What Is a Social Fact?" is a good (but dated) starting point on what I hope to get at here--again, on the go or I'd have more :\



Quote:
Alright, but I just don't think there is something specifically Murican about wanting goods at the lowest possible price/cost (I understand there is more to it than this, so I'm not throwing away his analysis on this). But a point I just want to keep clear is that US consumers do not create cheap labor; if they buy "Murican," the Chinese workers still get shit(tier) wages, albeit at a different job.
Right, he's not really making any ethical point about cheap foreign labor so much as exposing the hypocrisy of people who are outraged by cheap labor but a) whose way of life essentially depends on it and b) who do not/cannot conceive of the actual humans across the world whose lives are intimately bound to their own--a certain kind of narcissism. Again, not to just dump links, but this is a very good sequence of pieces on 9/11 and The Matrix that addresses the kind of narcissism I'm talking about:

http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2009/...airy_tale.html
http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2009/...he_matrix.html
Quote:
The Matrix could have carried us, could have kept the Schizotypal state active, maybe for another ten years. It gave Narcissism the strength to look reality in the face and say, "my identity is bigger than you, I don't care what you do, if I needed to, I could control you."

Two years after The Matrix, reality responded.
http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2009/...he_matrix.html
Quote:
9-11 should have marked the end of the postmodern era, and of the cultural narcissism we were all a part of.

This was an external reality vigorously asserting that it was not going to be the setting of anyone's personal movie.
Quote:
It caused three narcissistic injuries:

...


Second, it violated the most important aspect of postmodern narcissism: story. Not only was the attack a surprise-- no warning, no buildup, no exposition, no rising action-- but even the characters were a surprise.

At least if it had been the Russians, or even aliens, it would have followed a previously understood narrative. Has anyone seen this movie before?

We didn't know they even existed. Tali what? Did anyone know the backstory? Was there a movie with them as the bad guys? Back To The Future!-- wait, weren't they Libyans?

Turns out we are just bit characters in someone else's movie.

Third: we were revealed to be powerless. No heroes. No one knew kung fu. Who was there left to fight, anyway?

Were they any heroes? Anybody? How about... firemen?

Ultimately, 9/11 contradicted The Matrix. We weren't more than we appeared, but less.

We were so psychologically paralyzed that the very first thing we did was change the language to minimize the narcissistic injury, the discovery that other people were able to affect us. We called Oklahoma City a bombing. This was just a date.

On one sunny, cloudless Tuesday, postmodernism was obliterated. Two days short of Neo's thirtieth birthday.
Quote:
Narcissistic Injuries Result Always In Rage...

If you are under 238, this probably won't have the same significance: the government, the media, and the American public were seriously debating the use of nuclear weapons.

... Or Denial

But 9/11 didn't take. I cannot explain this. Within a year, two years, we were back to the same old narcissism. "Everything changed after 9-11" turned out to be exactly false. The stock market went back into familiar bull run mode, and in 2006 Time named "You" it's Person of the year, a laughable move at any time in history, let alone post-9/11 and waist deep in Iraq. 9/11 should have changed everything. It changed nothing.

And The Matrix is Good For Another Two Sequels

You might say that the Great Recession we're in now should end postmodern narcissism. Nope. Amazingly, all I hear and read are calls for punishing those who got us into this mess (Wall Street), "fixing the system," "solving the housing crisis." People are waiting for things to "get back to normal." People: this is normal. The past twenty years-- easy credit, college for everyone that leads to a job at Starbucks, unemployment under 6%-- that was abnormal. We associate the word "unemployment" with steel workers, but do you think any economy not top heavy with credit can afford to pay 600 extra Starbucks stores worth of baristas $8/hr? Or computer programmers $50k? Don't yell at me-- I'm not saying they aren't worth it-- I'm saying this economy cannot, and could never, afford it.

I know, greedy companies are outsourcing to India because they want to maximize profits. You say that thinking that if they stayed in America, they'd make less profits. Wrong. They'd close.

"You don't know what you're talking about. Why would Toyota build plants in Alabama and hire American workers if it wasn't profitable?" Because it gets them two senators and a bunch of congressmen, that's why.

Instead of having that discussion, the one we're having is whether we should tax AIG bonuses at 90%. I know I'm alone in this, but someone has to say it: this is idiocy. Sure they don't deserve those bonuses, but really, is this the best use of Congress's time? Really? "But it's about perception." Isn't it time we focused on something more than perception? Isn't our obsession with perception exactly what is wrong with us?

So: two huge historical realities have had no impact on our cultural narcissism.

This is further support to my contention that meaningful cultural change can't happen to a society while it still lives. It requires a change in generation, in biology.

Thankfully, we are setting them up very nicely.
I'm trying not to inundate you with these, but they are all pretty short and lucid and can be read in a few minutes each, hopefully. They're definitely not monstrosities of German Idealism.



Quote:
Jargon: Demand = the relationship between quantity demanded and price (i.e. the quantity demanded at various alternative prices).
In any case, it is a good question, but his example where we buy Murican does nothing to help Chinese workers (it actually hurts them). I don't think charity through refusing to pay low prices is efficient charity (or likely; although there are "fair trade products," so you could maybe study the demand of fair trade products to see how much people are willing to pay for this type of thing). A more direct form of charity seems preferable.

I think maybe you cut your thought short there, so I don't know if I responded appropriately.
Thx. Didn't really cut short so much as gave up on editing in Taptalk because it can show like 2.5 short lines of text at a time and scrolling in that tiny area is a chore.


Quote:
Hey, this sounds like some methodological individualism (albeit we can talk about how institutions influence behavior as well). But now I'm still confused about the notion of "system," but you have supplied me with some additional things to read if I want to clear it up.

Question
Is there a specific point you'd like this conversation to hone in on? In responding, I think I'm missing the forest for the trees as far as what to get out of the discussion; so in hopes of making my responses more pointed, feel free to tell me precisely what is of your interest. I just feel that I'm a mile away from where we started, which was something to do about identity and responsibility for actions. I'm happy to continuing the discussion along present lines as well.
I'm mainly just interested in talking about the dynamics of how people behave in light of mass culture and global economy, with an eye on how a coherent notion of responsibility might or might not be possible and what it would imply.

Personally, I lean toward mass culture teaches us to be narcissists who don't know how to want and how to not want what we can't (in whatever terms you want to take that word--practically, ethically, conceptually, etc) have, which is potentially catastrophic at worst, and at best leaves people generally unfulfilled and lazy. I try to reconcile these conditions with my personal experience with the fact that only through actual hard mental and physical work can people change, and not in a feel-good self-delusional way, but actually become better (<--loaded term) people. It's a tough balance to strike, but I think it's more empathetic than the standard "bootstraps, m'boy" response from half of those in power, and more pragmatic than the other half's half-measures. FWIW I think Friedman's best contribution to the world was his support for a negative income tax.


Going to drop three more short ones to mull over (I want to reread them anyway, so this will motivate me to) because my screen is greasing up from my thumbs and holy shit I can't believe I typed so much on a 2.5" wide pane of glass. They are sort of a view from 10,000 feet of the disparate threads I bring up.

http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2009/..._be_cured.html
Spoiler!


http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2010/...pathology.html
Spoiler!


Spoiler!



I'll leave you a gift--the audio file he released that rereads a Greek myth:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/z2p3jdjswk..._Narcissus.mp3 (and of course there's a massive text version, but you can't/shouldn't consume that one while driving, and the way it's written doesn't really lend itself to text: http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2012/...narcissus.html).

tl;dr: responsibility in light of utter hopelessness of the human condition. Go.
Spoiler!

Last edited by davobrosia; 04-29-2014 at 05:03 PM.
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#64
04-29-2014
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Originally Posted by PM View Post
but you're only actually assuming different things about how people operate with that statement; among them that people act based on cost-benefit analyses which crunch out risk-values, which doesn't conflict with the statement that "he wanted to get caught", it's just an underdefinition of it, dehumanized and useful for the purposes of rationalizing what are akin to social contract theories in hayek et al.
People act in ways that they think will make them happier. I don't think people act according to formal calculations of costs and benefits and risk values which need "crunching out." People choose their actions based on if they believe taking the action will make them happier than if they refrain from that action and choose a different course. They most often are not aware of all the costs, the benefits, the risk, or the alternatives, so they act according to their belief as to what is the best or most-valued course of action.

There is a difference between "he wanted to get caught" and "he preferred getting caught to not doing it." It is a more accurate description of the human action, so I don't find basis for calling it dehumanizing.
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#65
04-29-2014
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Originally Posted by zyphex View Post
People act in ways that they think will make them happier. People choose their actions based on if they believe taking the action will make them happier than if they refrain from that action and choose a different course.
so people act based on reason, then, counterfactually crunching out something like happiness-potentials, what will x or y afford me (in terms of happiness)...?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cursed Lemon View Post
Here's the problem - I am not a means to the end of rape culture, I am the end. I am literally the termination of this whole ordeal.
here's the problem
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#66
04-29-2014
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so people act based on reason, then, counterfactually crunching out something like happiness-potentials, what will x or y afford me (in terms of happiness)...?
Preference is an ordinal, rather than a cardinal relation (I can't say "apples give me 6 happiness-points/utils and oranges give me 4"; preferring is ordering, not some type of numerical calculation of happiness-potentials/utils or what have you.

You see 2 things x and y, and you have to choose one of them. (x and y can be two goods, two opportunities, anything you have to choose between). You pick the one you prefer (this is pretty much a tautology); you prefer the one you like better, the one that you think would make you most satisfied.

But I mean, things aren't even that formal in reality; I just put on my slippers. Why? I wanted warm feet. I didn't stop, think about it and calculate anything. I also didn't think of all my alternatives (if I put on my slippers now, I can't pick up my book over there at the same time) because one of the things I prefer is not taking so much damn time to choose (I have time preference, i.e. I prefer to get shit done sooner than later). For those things that have relatively low costs (and I may know they have low costs from my previous experience such as with the act of "putting on slippers") and immediate benefits, it is true, there isn't much of a reasoning process. But I still put on my slippers because I preferred doing that to the alternatives of either 1) picking up my book or 2)taking the time to evaluate all of the minuscule costs and benefits associating with shoving my dumb foot in a slipper. And I definitely preferred it to not putting on my slipper at all.

People act based on wants, and use reason to try to find the means to achieve these wants.

Of course, some people reason that a way to attract Jodie Foster is to shoot Ronald Reagan, so this isn't some elevated form of reason that I speak of when talking about choosing means to fulfill ends/wants.
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#67
04-30-2014
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Originally Posted by davobrosia View Post
Right, he's not really making any ethical point about cheap foreign labor so much as exposing the hypocrisy of people who are outraged by cheap labor but a) whose way of life essentially depends on it and b) who do not/cannot conceive of the actual humans across the world whose lives are intimately bound to their own--a certain kind of narcissism.

...

I'm mainly just interested in talking about the dynamics of how people behave in light of mass culture and global economy, with an eye on how a coherent notion of responsibility might or might not be possible and what it would imply.
I'll give a fuller post at some point, but thought I'd post something related: An Ode to Hypocrisy by PM

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That's a bunch of bullshit, the companies have to do what their people want or business is ruined. People don't care enough about alternative sources to do anything, so business continues as usual.

It's all our fault in free market.
I think there is a lot of truth to this; of course we'd like companies to be more responsible, but if consumers aren't willing to hold their feet to the fire and DEMAND (with their money) better alternatives, then there is no change. If you are going to speak up about wanting change, put your money where your mouth is, because you don't get something for nothing.
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#68
04-30-2014
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guess i should say that my views have changed substantially in the six years since i made that post. that thread came only shortly after i tried to desperately rationalize and cling onto what was left of my christianity with another thread, for instance. and anyways, my whole point about "our" hypocrisy was really only and could only be directed at myself, given that i was 16, and you can view that thread as an expression of denial of guilt, since i attacked people like ashtre instead of myself

"companies only do what their people want" is absurd. i don't even know what i meant by that. companies which operate for a profit take on the corporate structure and "what people want" is irrelevant at this point.


dk if you have access to this paywall but this is more where i land on the issue today. this is the sort of stuff i find interesting; actual attention paid to the new form of corporate power, not libertarian lines like "in a free market we are all at fault" because we perpetuate it (what other choice do we have? to resign ourselves? to go the way of the saro-wiwas of the world?). this rhetoric about individual responsibility functions to keep invisible the actual practices of transnational corporations and the legal frameworks which legitimize (and perpetuate) business as usual. i don't suppose you've heard of ALEC? or the Washington Consensus (the IMF, the World Bank, etc.)?

it is obvious that people who have to worry about their next paycheck, or any people who have a family, (the nuclear family is the agent of the state, after all) are much less likely to try "effecting change", and for all intents and purposes cannot be successful even if they do.


these are some sloppy disjointed thoughts; maybe i will get around to posting up my critique of the ideology of individualism when finals and etc. are over.

i will just add that your notion of preference and bourdieu's notion of "taste" (as put forward here and elsewhere) are incompatible

Spoiler!


i'm sure davo's linked you to adorno and horkheimer before, but see in this connection the culture industry.
the point isn't that we are all driving model t's (if you get what i mean). . . it's that we don't think we are. but the mindless variation of toothbrushes we've received since a&h published this work doesn't invalidate the criticism
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cursed Lemon View Post
Here's the problem - I am not a means to the end of rape culture, I am the end. I am literally the termination of this whole ordeal.
here's the problem

Last edited by PM; 04-30-2014 at 07:24 PM.
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#69
04-30-2014
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Originally Posted by PM View Post
guess i should say that my views have changed substantially since i was sixteen. that thread came only shortly after i tried to desperately rationalize and cling onto what was left of my christianity, for instance. and anyways, my whole point about "our" hypocrisy was really only and could only be directed at myself, given that i was 16, and you can view that thread as an expression of denial of guilt, since i attacked people like ashtre instead of myself

"companies only do what their people want" is absurd. i don't even know what i meant by that. companies which operate for a profit take on the corporate structure and "what people want" is irrelevant at this point.


dk if you have access to this paywall but this is more where i land on the issue today. . . or this is the sort of stuff i find interesting. saying "in a free market we are all individually at fault" tells half a truth which keeps invisible the actual practices of transnational corporations and legal frameworks which structure business as usual, etc. people who have to worry about their next paycheck, who have a family and value that over anything like "effecting change", (the nuclear family is the agent of the state,) cannot seriously consider putting their money where their mouth is and thereby being the change they want to see.
Points taken. Poor people can't afford to buy more expensive things, even if they think the cheaper alternatives are "bad." I suppose I don't find myself agreeing whole-heartedly with the sentiment of my last post in regards to "putting your money where you mouth is." I should have held back a bit; the point is that it is easy to put the blame on big business, when in reality we should have an equal focus on blaming consumers. (Unless we want to consider the way business and government collude together to eff the public at large, and there seems little we can do about it; in those regards, those with power bear a larger burden of the blame).


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maybe i will get around to posting up my critique of the ideology of individualism when finals and etc. are over, but i wonder if you've even read two paragraphs of the link i posted above (elaborating guattari's thoughts on the "infraindividual", the pre-individual, what itself "gives" the "given" individual)
Before we waste too much time talking past each other, I should be clear that my methodological individualism has to do with the realm of action in the world; it's just a focus on the fact that individuals act, and the belief that insofar as we attribute collectives (i.e. "the system", "government", "society", "capital", "capitalism", "corporation") as acting we ought to be referring to individuals within the structures acting. It is a counter to conceptual realism.

I don't think methodological individualism is a large constraint, and it isn't meant to say that individuals choose their tastes or anything of the sort.

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Bourdieu rejects the traditional notion that what he calls "tastes" (that is, consumer preferences) are the result of innate, individualistic choices of the human intellect. He argues that this "Kantian aesthetic" fails to recognize that tastes are socially conditioned and that the objects of consumer choice reflect a symbolic hierarchy that is determined and maintained by the socially dominant in order to enforce their distance or distinction from other classes of society.
Whatever he means by the traditional notion of "tastes" I do not know, but nowhere does preference, as I have described it, reject that tastes are socially conditioned...etc.
I don't want to turn this back into the habitus thread so we should focus on what Davo is looking to talk about, but anyway, we shouldn't be focusing on whether people say things are compatible or not. We should be looking at the truth, and I really don't see how anything in my last post regarding preferences/wants is even close to controversial.

In any case, to deny preference is to deny that we can infer anything about a person's wants from observing the way they act. That is my only claim about preferences. I'm not willing to debate that issue, as I'm resolute that actions tell us something about the wants/preferences of the agent (i.e. something so elementary as "given his circumstances/context, he wanted to do that rather than not do that, because he did it).
Studying where the wants come from or why he wants what he wants, why he acts why he acts, is the next step left to psychology and sociology.

If you deny that action reveals (previous) wants, then you ought to disagree that we can say "he wanted to get caught." Denying preference = denying wants.

There is an apple and an orange. You need (and can afford) to buy one of them, but cannot afford to buy both together. On what basis do you pick? Answer: the one you view as "best", i.e. the one you want, the one you prefer, etc. Why you view it as "best" or preferred is a big question indeed, but its answer has nothing to do with the fact that you picked it because you viewed it as "best" among alternatives available.

Nowhere in this description does it deny that what you view as "best" is socially conditioned or that the objects of consumer choice reflect a symbolic hierarchy that is determined and maintained by the socially dominant in order to enforce their distance or distinction from other classes of society.
GT: Zyphex

Last edited by zyphex; 04-30-2014 at 07:51 PM.
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04-30-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zyphex View Post
the belief that insofar as we attribute collectives (i.e. "the system", "government", "society", "capital", "capitalism", "corporation") as acting we ought to be referring to individuals within the structures acting.


Studying where the wants come from or why he wants what he wants, why he acts why he acts, is the next step left to psychology and sociology.
i've here pinpointed where we're in disagreement.

1) i do not believe individuals are basic to collectives; individuals are collectives. (i suppose this will be confusing, but i will not link the article again. it's up there if you decide you actually want to look).

2) you're only asserting a tautology here (action from want, want = what is to be acted) and without any good reason divorcing "sociology" from "psychology" (saying only the latter can answer "why he acts (wants) what he acts (wants)"), when bourdieu's work (which i'm only bringing up here since it's relevant to your idea of individual consumer preference) shows that this is in point of fact demonstrably false; taste (and rationalizations of taste) work on a pre-individual level. . . if we take the individual to be the "wanting" and "acting" agent within a structure (which you've called a collective in the above), then you're after all only metaphysically presuming agent causality; but there is no individual, in the sense of being an "agent who makes waves in the collective", before there is an education of taste.



"If you deny that action reveals (previous) wants,"
for god's sake, i've been reading freud and lacan for nearly three years now.


i take it you didn't read any of that first article linked to in the above post either, given your response? that's fine, and all, it just makes me wonder whether we won't ever stop talking past one another. to me it seems like you keep saying the same things over and over without engaging with the points i'm actually trying to make. is that what you see me doing, too?
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Originally Posted by Cursed Lemon View Post
Here's the problem - I am not a means to the end of rape culture, I am the end. I am literally the termination of this whole ordeal.
here's the problem

Last edited by PM; 04-30-2014 at 07:59 PM.
 

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