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Post 40

Monday, March 21 - 6:38pmSanction this postReply
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The idea that criminality is genetically inherited is crap ("Crap" is a technical term indicating a theory or idea which is so full of errors that are so obvious that is shouldn't need anything more than that label among thinking people).

This idea flies directly in the face of human choice. These are the kind of human acts that are the product of a choice. Not like the acts we differentiate as involuntary, like the beating of the heart. If there are no such things as choice-based acts, then Dean's posts are, by his premises, making genetically required movements of his fingers on the keyboard that have nothing to do with what the rest of us think of as choices and values. Or are his thoughts actually his and not just genetically inherited thought-genes from his parents?

I've read the twins study - it was poorly done and it only finds serious supporters among those who want to use it to support a position that people's thoughts, values, 'choices' are all determined - that we are puppets of our genes.

What we are talking about here are correlations - not causation. There is a significant correlation between genetic inheritance and upbringing - but it is correlative not causal. A child is raised by the parents, learns from the parents, lives in the same neighborhood as the parents, and attends the school in that neighborhood. That means that kids' values are learned and chosen from what is presented by his peers and his parents in that neighborhood.

If every child with criminal parents became a criminal that would be evidence of something solid and we would need to look at it. But that is not even close to what we see. The highest portion of criminal parents do not produce kids that become criminals. That is not only born by studies, but I've worked as a child protective agent in South Central L.A. for 5 years. People can, and do, surmount the effects of the environment - because they make choices. They are able to do this because their genes created a machine capable of choice - not this absurd idea of thought-genes.
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Eye color comes from the pigment which is present in different amounts in the iris. There are a two genes that are located at different loci, one which codes for brown eyes, and the other is recessive and codes for blue eyes. There is also a recessive pair that code for green eyes.

There are two genes located at different loci. One gene, called B for simplicity, confers brown eye color, and it is dominant over the b allele (recessive) which gives rise to the blue eye color. The other gene, named G, also has two alleles: G (dominant for green) and g (recessive) for lighter greenish colored eyes.

The single DNA strand donated by each of the parent form the genes used to begin the embryo. The actual creation of the eyes is done during embryology. This complex process of transcribing the DNA sequence via RNA into the protein molecules that will form the cells that create the eye.

That this is the creation of what can grow into an eye. There is no way this process can be envisioned as some magical black box out of which a genetically encoded thought will pop out. This is what Dean and others are claiming as a belief - that thoughts and values are a product of our genes. Genes for pickpocketing? For antitrust violations? For murder? For tax evasion? What are the tri-nucleotide sequences that we have identified as the codons which pair to generate the RNA that creates the polypeptides that somehow are processed in embryology to represents a criminal thought that will spring into action in, say, 15 years when the embryo has become a teen?

Look at the absurd epistemology that would require. A thought is planted in the mind before birth? How does such conceptual activity take place since concepts must first be based upon sensory experience of concretes that the embryo hasn't yet sensed.

And what about the people in North Korea where the law is all backwards, do 'criminals' over there have genes that are backwards - i.e., in favor of freedom to such a degree that they have no choice but to violate those laws? Would we measure their bone structure, muscles and intelligence averages to see who is pro-freedom? I hope that people can grasp the fact that genes don't understand laws and political boundaries.

All nonsense.



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Post 41

Monday, March 21 - 6:49pmSanction this postReply
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Holding back... just letting my original words stand by themselves and allowing the audience to decide for themselves....
(Edited by Dean Michael Gores on 3/21, 6:53pm)




Post 42

Monday, March 21 - 7:35pmSanction this postReply
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Dean,

A virus identifies a very small subset of realty.
I guess there is a sense of "identify" which is applicable to organisms without brains or even without nervous systems -- but it is not the same kind of "identify" spoken of with the highest organisms. It is merely another way to talk about stimulus-response mechanisms.

To say that the reception of a stimulus is an "identification" is to stretch the term beyond its original meaning.

Ed




Post 43

Monday, March 21 - 7:54pmSanction this postReply
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Yes, identification with extremely little problem solving ability... so little problem solving ability (intelligence) that you may not like to classify it as "intelligence" unless I define intelligence as "problem solving ability". Yet I do classify it as intelligence, the most primitive form of intelligence: problem solving using the method of random guess and check.

Ed said: "To say that the reception of a stimulus is an "identification" is to stretch the term beyond its original meaning."

I don't think there was ever any requirement that "identification" can only be performed by a neural net. But whatever you want to call it, I believe you have still yet to rebut my argument that the following statement is true:

"All life forms gain information about what reality is and how it works through experience/sensory. Hence portions of reality are knowable, and all life forms know some truth."

:)



Post 44

Tuesday, March 22 - 10:07amSanction this postReply
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Dean,

Yet I do classify it as intelligence, the most primitive form of intelligence: problem solving using the method of random guess and check.

But viruses, not having nervous systems, do not ever make guesses. Again, you are being illiteral. You're anthropomorphizing. Now, if you want to come out with: "Dean's fuzzy, hazy notion of how economics explains all life action" then you are free to do so (and are already on your way). But I would expect more from you. I don't want to put any undue social or peer pressure on you, Dean -- but I expect big things from you in the future.

:-)

I don't think there was ever any requirement that "identification" can only be performed by a neural net.

I do.

"All life forms gain information about what reality is and how it works through experience/sensory. Hence portions of reality are knowable, and all life forms know some truth."

To back-track a little, all life forms detect variation in the ambient stimulus array -- which is a "gain" of "information" -- but not all life forms gain information (which is better dubbed: an "understanding") about how reality works.

Ed

(Edited by Ed Thompson on 3/22, 10:09am)




Post 45

Tuesday, March 22 - 7:03pmSanction this postReply
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"Your anthropomorphizing"... dude, but that's just it. You don't recognize what I claim is intelligence as intelligence. Its your unsolved problem that somehow humans have intelligence when they are made of "inanimate" objects such as molecules, while, I have solved it.

(Edited by Dean Michael Gores on 3/22, 7:05pm)




Post 46

Tuesday, March 22 - 7:33pmSanction this postReply
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Dean,

"Your anthropomorphizing"... dude, but that's just it. You don't recognize what I claim is intelligence as intelligence. Its your unsolved problem that somehow humans have intelligence when they are made of "inanimate" objects such as molecules, while, I have solved it.
I feel like you should have ended that post with a pause followed by:

... muwahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

Ed




Post 47

Wednesday, March 23 - 8:02amSanction this postReply
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And then there is this theory.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/03/22/us-venezuela-chavez-mars-idUSTRE72L61D20110322

You really need to check out his picture:

"This is the church, and this is the steeple...
Open the doors, and kill all the people."





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Post 48

Wednesday, March 23 - 9:31amSanction this postReply
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Dean Said: I strive to make my understanding of economics (a subset of philosophy), work well (does a good job predicting behavior) across all life forms. Where economics is the science that analyzes the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services

Dean, in the absence of any actual examples of sophonts that are not humans, it makes no sense to do this. I can also think of possible creatures, for example a "hive mind" of some kind, where our economics would NOT be of value.



Post 49

Thursday, March 24 - 4:47amSanction this postReply
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http://www.d.umn.edu/~jhamlin1/hooton.html

1939.

This theory -- and this supposed evidence -- was much more widespread then.

But then again, this was also primetime for the Soviet invasion of western universities with all manner of slop.

I always go back to, what mankind can do and is capable of is not always what men do.

Mankind can choose to over-ride the impulses of our reptilian circuitry, and choose to value higher order reasoning.

Our reptilian logic is very simple: "Can I eat it? Can it eat me?"

But men do not always choose so.

So it is possible to say "Men are ruled by their reptilian circuitry" and it is possible to say "Men choose what they value" and both be true at the same time, especially when talking about different instances of men, but sometimes even the same instance.

Law already recognizes mens rea, the broken machine defense.

Odd fact of law: 99.999999% grasp of reality required to be convicted of willfull murder, but only 85% grasp of reality required to 'practice law.' As in, testify.

Not a joke...

This implies that our courts of law regard it as possible to not only assess one's grasp of reality, but measure it.

It is an express acknowledgment, in our courts of law, that reality exists and is normally able to be grasped.

As well, that it is possible not to, and that failure is a defense against willfull action.


BTW not that I know, but there is another interpretation of the 1939 Hooten observations. Folks who look different are ostracized, shunned, outcast by the tribe and tend to become criminals as a response.




(Edited by Fred Bartlett on 3/24, 4:52am)




Post 50

Saturday, March 26 - 1:52pmSanction this postReply
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Hm. I think I should correct my earlier statement that I am a "determinist". I do not mean that I hold any beliefs that other determinist believe-- beyond the core belief that reality is causal. On the subject of morality and decision making, I consider myself a Compatibalist. Arguments which could then follow between myself and a person who believes that a person could actually decide two different choices at the same point in the history of reality... can be skipped on this thread, I've no interest! :)

========

Kurt,
Dean, in the absence of any actual examples of sophonts that are not humans, it makes no sense to do this. I can also think of possible creatures, for example a "hive mind" of some kind, where our economics would NOT be of value.
Hm. Well, as what is classified as "human" becomes more diverse, it begins to make more sense. Anyways... its obscure, I'd rather not talk about it! :)



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