Archive for the ‘Behaviour’ Category

Swedish Academy is proving to be a bunch of skunks

April 17, 2018


 

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Arnaultgate: The Swedish Academy is revelling in its own excrement

April 12, 2018

Not that a body which awards a Literature Nobel to Dylan has any credibility left, but they are currently excelling in covering themselves with excrement.

Alfred Nobel would be spinning in his grave.

The Nobel brand is being soiled by a bunch of privileged, self-admiring brats.


Of Interest.

How Sohlman and 3 white Russian stallions ensured the establishment of the Nobel prizes


 

Without Hitler, Israel would probably not exist

April 8, 2018

History is causal.

Above all, it is existential.

“What would have been if …..?” can never be more than a thought experiment. Wishing away horrific events in the past is not just pointless, it is a form of denial of “what is”.  Being proud of past generations or apologising for their actions are both equally inane.

  • Without prophets, gods would not exist
  • Without the rise of the Roman Empire, we wouldn’t have highways
  • Without the fall of the Roman Empire, we wouldn’t have Ferraris today
  • Without the European colonisation of the Americas, native Americans would still be primitive hunter gatherers
  • Without the European colonisation of the Americas, Asian cuisine (horror of horrors) would not include chillies
  • Without the colonisation of Australia, the aborigines would be either extinct or speaking Chinese,
  • Without British colonisation, the Indian sub-continent would be a mishmash of little warring kingdoms,
  • Without Hitler, Israel would probably not exist today.

Apologising for what previous generations or your ancestors may have done makes no sense.

If you must apologise, apologise for what your children and your descendants may do.


 

Europe is on its way to widespread euthanasia for the elderly

April 5, 2018

Legalising voluntary and “semi-voluntary” euthanasia is increasingly being seen as a way to alleviate the increasing cost of caring for the elderly.

Even if active euthanasia has only been legalised in a few countries, I suspect it is only a matter of time before most of Europe introduces some form of legal euthanasia for the critically ill and for the aged and the senile. It is already the accepted norm that children have no special or moral or economic obligation for the care of their aged parents. That obligation has already passed to the state. For millennials the care of the aged is entirely a matter for the state. There is a growing sense among the younger in Europe that the elderly and infirm have outstayed their time and are primarily a burden on society. For the state, the elderly are an unwelcome but unavoidable demographic. The compassionate society requires them to be assisted to take care of themselves in their own homes for as long as the costs are not unacceptable. Thereafter they are placed in “homes” for  the elderly where they are largely out of sight and where they are expected to “go quietly”. State run homes always have budget constraints and the level of care gradually deteriorates. Where homes operated by care companies but financed by the state, there is an incentive for the care companies to maximise “turnover”. And “turnover” means exactly what it sounds like. Completely private care apartments or homes probably provide the best care to those who can afford it.

I can see no moral objection to voluntary euthanasia. In the case of dementia, “voluntary” may not be entirely feasible. But what all states and all care homes know very well is that Euthanasia is both profitable and cost effective

In Sweden there have been many articles recently about the increasing cost of caring for the elderly with dementia. It is all just part of the campaign to get a wide moral and political acceptance for euthanasia being introduced  across the EU. The risk is that it will not be just voluntary euthanasia but will also include involuntary euthanasia of the unwanted. The introduction of legalised euthanasia in Belgium has not been without its problems.

Belgian Euthanasia Corruption Exposed

Euthanasia in Belgium has gone completely out of the control — including as just two examples —doctors killing the mentally ill and conjoining the death procedure with voluntary organ harvesting, as well as joint euthanasia deaths of elderly couples who ask to die for fear of future widowhood.

Now, a death bureaucrat named Dr. Ludo Vanopdenbosch has turned whistleblower as he resigned from the euthanasia-review commission. Vanopdenbosch charges his former colleagues with covering up violations of the euthanasia law that, he worries, could discredit euthanasia and reduce its support among the public.

He describes a doctor euthanizing a dementia patient who had not asked to be killed at the request of her family. ……

 ……… people have accepted the premise that killing is an acceptable answer to human suffering. 

Two of my friends have utilised the services of Dignitas. So, for whatever reasons it may come, I do hope that voluntary euthanasia is available to me when my time comes.


 

Another fundamental human right?

March 26, 2018

This could be added as the 31st Article in the UN Declaration of Universal Human Rights but would probably need to be placed between the current Articles 18 and 19.

Freedom of identity choice:

Everyone has the right to freedom of choice of identity regarding race, colour or gender regardless of actual race, colour or gender. This right includes the freedom to change his/her/its identity of choice and the freedom to manifest his/her/its chosen identity in all his/her/its actions, behaviour, thought and observance.

A new fundamental human right?


 

Real rights are dependent upon behaviour (part 4)

March 20, 2018

My behaviour strongly influences the behaviour of others towards me.

Any “right” I may have can only exist if the behaviour of others is, at worst, not opposed to my exercise of the right.

Therefore,

Any “rights” I may have are dependent upon my behaviour.


 

The New Eugenics

March 11, 2018

Eugenics, because of the way it was practised by the Nazis, has become a bit of a taboo word. But it has been practised in silence and by default for some time now.

ktwop (2013):

The trends I think are fairly clear. The proportion of “artificial births” is increasing and the element of genetic selection by screening for desired charateristics in such cases is on the increase. The number of abortions after conception would seem to be on its way to some “stable” level of perhaps 25% of all conceptions. The genetic content of the decision to abort however is also increasing and it is likely that the frequency of births where genetic disorders exist or where the propensity for debilitating disease is high will decrease sharply as genetic screening techniques develop further.

It is still a long way off to humans breeding for specific charateristics but even what is being practised now is the start of eugenics in all but name. And it is not difficult to imagine that eugenics – without any hint of coercion – but where parents or the mothers-to-be select for certain characteristics or deselect (by abortion) to avoid others in their children-to-be will be de rigueur.

As neonatal screening techniques improve, eugenics is no longer just by default but is increasingly due to an active choice being made. Down syndrome is already well on the way to being eradicated.


 

Human rights are not universal and they are not free: The fatal flaw in the UN “Universal Declaration of Human Rights” (part 3)

March 10, 2018

In part 1  I proposed as a definition:

A right is entirely a social construct. .. I take a right to be an entitlement. It is a possession of status within some specified human society which gives its owner a privilege to act or not act in some specific manner, and/or a claim on other entities within the relevant society to act or not act in some specified manner. …… Rights can not – and do not – exist except when vested by a competent grant-giver in a qualified recipient.

A unilateral proclamation or declaration does not create a right. A human right can therefore only be created between two human parties, where the parties are identified and competent to fulfill their obligations (see part 2). For a right to truly exist, the behaviour of both parties in fulfilling the social contract is crucial. Any right which is an entitlement of one party is utterly dependant upon the behaviour of other involved parties. Without an acknowledged and accepted obligation of the other parties, no right exists. It is meaningless – and entirely insufficient – for third parties to declare that relevant other parties should or ought to have such obligations. A fundamental tenet of all valid contracts is that the parties involved commit to their obligations. It is not valid or acceptable for any party to create commitments for other parties. A contract can only be valid if the relevant parties freely enter into and commit to their own obligations.

Purported rights do not create or overcome behaviour. Actual behaviour creates real rights.

A true right can only exist if a valid social contract between a qualified party on the one hand and a competent party on the other, is in force.

The UN’s “Universal Declaration of Human Rights” (UDHR) was a knee-jerk reaction to the horrors of the Second World War and the state of the world immediately afterwards. Certainly intentions were good. But it was more a listing of pious hopes than any kind of a contract which could be a tool to change human behaviour. The UDHR was a document born of the Holocaust and a desire that such grotesque repression would never happen again. It was intended to be a compass for human behaviour. It has been the wrong tool at the wrong time.

It is my contention that the UDHR has not only failed to be an instrument for “improving” human behaviour, it has also legitimised the idea that purported rights are “free” and not linked to any qualifications or duties or standards of behaviour.

In the 70 years since it was formulated, the UDHR has been used as the “bible” for human rights legislation. But the state of humankind today in respect of the real rights accorded to an individual by surrounding society is in most cases no better than in 1948. In many instances it is very much worse. Human behaviour is not any better now, than it was then.   It is my contention that the UDHR has done more harm than good. It frees one party (“everyone”) from any obligations or duties or qualifications in the ownership of an entitlement. The other party which must grant and guarantee the right is never defined. As a “contract document” it is not fit for purpose. It has been counterproductive to its own goals because its very lack of rigour has given mere wishes and desires the false status of rights. This in turn has led to the dilution of the necessary requirements for real rights to exist. It has led us down the wrong path. It has provided a very shaky foundation for the legislation that follows which – not surprisingly – is then poor legislation.

Since it was formulated in 1948 and ratified in 1951, there have been more deaths due to recognised “genocides” than during the Holocaust. Religious fanaticism has increased. Freedom of belief has become the freedom to indoctrinate. Barbarism and terror is the new normal for an extremist. The nuclear family has been stripped of its dignity in many parts of the world. To not offend carries more weight than the voicing of true opinion. Mere accusations (especially on social media) now contain a presumption of guilt. Depravity is glorified in the name of “human rights”. Anti-social behaviour is “protected” by purported rights. Having signed up to the UDHR does not stop nations from cruel and unusual treatment of political opponents. States confiscate more of their citizens’ property than ever before under the guise of taxation. The depths to which human behaviour sinks (whether by Mexican drug cartels or by ISIS) has not changed since the Nazi atrocities.

The UDHR fails as a contract document because

  1. it does not address what constitutes a right, and
  2. it does not define the parties to the contract, and
  3. it does not define the obligations and liabilities of the parties, and
  4. it states that the subject of the contract (human rights) are universal, and therefore
  5. contains no commitment from the involved parties

The UDHR ends up being a good-intentioned but banal collection of maudlin platitudes. The entire content can just as well be summarised as Jack Nicholson’s character puts it in Mars Attacks, “Why can’t we all just get along?”. The UDHR was a document of its time. It had the best of intentions but it does not stand the test of time. If the goal was to improve human behaviour, it has led the world down the wrong path.

There is one fundamental, insidious, and corrosive flaw in the UDHR. It is a fatal flaw. This is the legitimising of the view that human rights are “free” and universal and unconnected to duties and obligations and standards of behaviour. It is this claim, that every individual, regardless of qualifications or duties, has entitlements which must be honoured by the rest of humanity without any obligations in return, which is the fatal flaw. Universality requires that the purported rights be “free” and that is why – as declared – they have no value in the real world. The perceived and the true value of any right depends upon the parties involved. Different rights have different values not only to the right-holder but also to the party granting and guaranteeing a right. Rights have a value for the right-holder and rights have costs for the guarantor. These values and costs are profoundly impacted by human behaviour.

There is also a philosophic failure in the UDHR. This is the adoption of the fantasy that human behaviour can be changed by proclamation and declarations in a top-down approach. There is an arrogance – albeit good-intentioned – in a text written by an elite purporting to represent all of mankind. Declaration of purported rights do not create behaviour. It is behaviour which creates and allows the manifestation of real rights. Human behaviour must of necessity begin with the individual, evolve locally and nationally and build up to the international. A top-down approach as in the UDHR is conceptually and fundamentally in error. If human rights are to be real they must first be created and ensured and exercised locally. They must first be rights which are clearly defined (not amorphous as in the UDHR) and specific (not universal and valueless) such that their ownership is clear and their exercise can, in fact, be guaranteed. Implementation at the local level can then be allowed and encouraged to grow to become global to the extent that shared values produce similar behaviour. Universal, amorphous rights as envisaged in the UDHR are necessarily non-existent and unenforceable. If human rights exist at all they start with my behaviour and yours, not with a sanctimonious declaration from the UN. Freedom of speech starts with what I am willing to allow my neighbour to say without triggering any opposing behaviour. If he slanders me then I find the cost of guaranteeing his free speech too much to bear and do what I can to silence him. Every right has a value and a cost. Behaviour creates the rights that are exercised. The rule of law has a part to play – but no system of law can guarantee compliance. In any event it can only begin with laws created at the local or national level to suit local or national rights which themselves have to be created and guaranteed. Global laws imposed on local societies is the cart before the horse.

Human rights are not “free”. They have value to the right-holder and a cost for the guarantor. And if they were “free” – as universality implies – then they have no value. It is by insisting on universality that the connection between rights and behaviour is lost. I suppose it really boils down to whether it is more important to make sanctimonious proclamations about what “human rights” ought to be, or whether it is more important to change human behaviour so that “human rights” are exercised and actually delivered.

The UDHR is written in the form of a contract with seven “whereas” clauses in the preamble, a proclamation clause and thirty Articles. But it is no treaty and no contract. It is just a declaration. As a contract document it is not fit for purpose since the parties to the contract, their obligations and liabilities are all undefined. Even the subject of the declaration – “human rights” are undefined. To its credit it has served as the basis of much legislation. But it has failed in its purpose of improving human behaviour – if that in fact was its purpose. It undermines itself by declaring human rights to be free and universal (and therefore of no real value).

As the UDHR is written even a divine power, if one existed, could not guarantee the purported rights


This is a commentary on why I find the UDHR not fit for purpose as a contract document.

UDHR commentary

The UDHR is not fit for purpose as a contract document because 

  1. The parties to the contract are undefined.
  2. Neither are the concepts of “rights” and “dignity”.
  3. In a contract document the whereas clauses in the preamble are introductory statements of fact that mean “that being the case.” In the UDHR the preamble and its whereas clauses are, at best, ungrounded statements, and at worst, statements of religious belief.

 

You can’t claim a “human right” unless you can identify who guarantees it (part 2)

March 4, 2018

Human rights do not occur naturally. They must be created and they must be bestowed. They cannot be self-bestowed. Once bestowed, if their exercise is thwarted they cease to be rights. Human rights can only be created as a social contract where the parties to the contract are able to, and do, fulfill their obligations.

In part 1 I described the concept of a right taken as an entitlement.

right is entirely a social construct. When encompassed within a legal, moral or ethical system, it could be taken as a social contract. As a contract it requires to be between two parties; the grant-giver and a recipient. ….. I  take a right to be an entitlement. It is a possession of status within some specified human society which gives its owner a privilege to act or not act in some specific manner, and/or a claim on other entities within the relevant society to act or not act in some specified manner. ….  Rights can not – and do not – exist except when vested by a competent grant-giver in a qualified recipient.

Two parties are necessary for a right to be created. The granter must be competent to grant and to ensure the exercise of the right and the recipient must be qualified and “free” to exercise the right. If a right is claimed but it is not clear as to who grants it and who guarantees it, then it is not a right. It may still be a wish or a hope or a desired standard of behaviour, but it manifestly is not a right. The granting party needs, not only to be identified, but also to be competent to grant and guarantee the entitlement. A party – such as a government – may go some way towards the grant of an entitlement by enshrining it in law, but no law (except the laws of nature) can inherently guarantee compliance. Moreover, even the grant of the entitlement is restricted by the jurisdiction within which the granting party holds sway. The party owning a right needs to be a qualified party who has been explicitly vested with the right by a competent party. The very concept of “human rights” is constrained to be applicable only to humans. It is necessary requirement for any right that the grant giver identifies which humans are to be vested with the right. “Everybody” is not a proper definition of a right-holder since there is no grant-giver capable of granting any kind of a right to “everybody”. Any claim of a right being universal and applicable to “all human beings” always fails because

  1. there is no competent agency – human or divine – which is able to grant and guarantee such “universal” rights to all humans, and
  2.  every real claim of a “universal” right is constrained to not be available to some humans.

Most claims of “human rights” fail the test of being rights and are merely wishes. Even where a government can be identified as the party granting and purporting to guarantee the right, the reality is that the right is not guaranteed.

The UN “Universal declaration of human rights” proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris on 10 December 1948 is unsatisfactory at very many levels. As a wish-list I have no great objection to it. As a list of standards to be achieved it has many admirable goals. But it is mainly a collection of platitudes – many undefined and many meaningless. It builds on questionable assumptions and a somewhat suspect philosophy. The title itself is ambiguous. Is the declaration universal or is it proclaimed that the desired rights are universal?

But the primary flaws with the UN document are that

  1. it refers to rights without considering what is necessary to constitute a right, and
  2. it ignores the qualifications necessary to own a “right” by claiming that rights should be universal

It starts by “recognising” the “equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family” with no reference to any party which might be able to grant and guarantee the claimed rights. By claiming that such rights be available universally, it immediately undermines its own intent since there is no human agency capable of granting any right universally. The document contains 30 Articles, and every single Article fails the test of defining, or even trying to define, who grants and who guarantees the proclaimed “right” and to whom.

As a document laying out a social contract it is not fit for purpose.

But more of that in part 3.


 

Declaring a “human right” does not make it one (part 1)

February 27, 2018

There are no human rights which follow as an inevitable consequence of the natural laws of the universe.

Consider what is needed to create a right. Mere declaration does not suffice. A right is entirely a social construct. When encompassed within a legal, moral or ethical system, it could be taken as a social contract. As a contract it requires to be between two parties; the grant-giver and a recipient. In fact, our entire conception of rights has meaning only when applied to the social interaction between humans.  All rights are about the behaviour of humans.

I take a right to be an entitlement. It is a possession of status within some specified human society which gives its owner a privilege to act or not act in some specific manner, and/or a claim on other entities within the relevant society to act or not act in some specified manner

The granting of a right is a necessary condition but it is not sufficient for a right to exist. It must be granted by a party such that

  • ownership of the right is vested in the receiver, and
  • exercise of the right by the recipient is guaranteed by the grant-giver

Rights can not – and do not – exist except when vested by a competent grant-giver in a qualified recipient. The grant-giver must have the power to grant. The competence of the grant-giver is fundamentally necessary (but also not sufficient) to the creation of a “right”. An individual can grant a right to another individual only if it is within his power to do so. A grant which is outside the competence of the grant-giver to give creates no right for the receiver.

It is also a necessary condition – though not sufficient – for the recipient to be qualified to possess and exercise the granted right. No rights can exist if the grant-giver does not have the wherewithal to vest ownership of those “rights” in the recipient.  Nor can they exist if the recipient is not capable of exercising such vested rights or if such exercise is not ensured. Declaration of so-called animal rights does not create any animal recipient qualified to possess or exercise that right. Such declarations do not vest privileges or claims in any animal and are actually about human behaviour.

Anybody can declare a right but for any grant to be meaningful, the granting party must be able to guarantee and ensure the exercise of that right by the right-holder. A right which cannot be exercised is vitiated and empty. It fails, in fact, to be a right, whether of claim or of privilege. The grant of such empty rights then becomes merely a statement of wishes. A party which can only grant empty rights, where the exercise of such “rights” is not guaranteed, is a party not sufficiently competent to grant rights.

Human rights are neither universal nor absolute. They are not written into the laws of the universe. They are an expression of desires and wishes and hopes about standards of human behaviour. In reality there are no human, or even divine, agencies which have a competence sufficient to grant so-called human rights. They are declared – always – by bodies or entities which lack the full competence first, to vest ownership of the rights in the recipients and second, to guarantee and ensure their exercise.

The UN Declaration of Human Rights (UN DHR) is just that – a declaration.  What it describes are not rights. The UN can neither guarantee nor ensure the ownership or the exercise of those  declared rights or of the implied duties. Neither can the governments of the UN’s member countries guarantee the exercise of the rights declared. Without the ability to guarantee the exercise, the rights declared are not, in fact, rights at all but are merely pious hopes.

UN Declaration Human Rights

The UN Declaration of hopes and wishes is only as good as it is allowed to be, by the assumptions it starts with. The assumptions are not sound. It is a declaration of desirable standards of human behaviour. Unfortunately it ignores the basic requirements for any rights to exist. It does not specify the parties involved. It ignores the competence required of the party granting the rights and ignores the qualifications of the receiver of the rights. The fundamental claim in the UN DHR that “all humans”, independent of their behaviour, should possess these “rights” is untenable. How? Who is competent to grant such ownership? To whom? And who guarantees the exercise of these “rights”.

Whatever the UN Declaration of Human Rights may be, it is not about rights at all.


 

 


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