Joined: Jan. 2007
I have to say, I find it a bit annoying (but "revealing" as KF would say) that UD bans me, lets vjtorley post nice posts commenting on my posts at TSZ, which I can't comment on at UD, and yet the commenters there can "paraphrase" my views, without link, so that they make no sense whatsoever, and then congratulate themselves on the vacuity of the paraphrase.
I thought Lizzie argument of why we should see humans as anything more than chemical oddities if one believes in evolution, is particularly unsophisticated. Basically her idea is that, well, we can call humans special, because we feel they are special. And her biggest cop-out, well, they have “emergence”. A completely vague, and unexplainable science term which tries to make sense of how a bunch of ants can make something smart, or how our individual brain cells can put together a complex thought.
She kept trying to say, “well, they are emergent, see, so that is where we get our moral ideas.” I think she didn’t even have a clue what she was trying to say, but simply was trying to throw out some concepts and hope they deflected the problem of finding morality in a completely materialist world.
If we are all just different mixes of chemicals, all the talk in the world about emergence doesn’t erase the fact that its just chemicals creating the illusion of value.
The fact is, science doesn’t even know what emergence is, they have no idea how ants make complex decisions, and how individual brain cells, add up to consciousness. Its a complete mystery,and she is using it as a defense for pulling morality out of thin air.
Thanks for calling out the “emergence” business. It is amazing how many people buy into the “emergence” buzzword as though it were some kind of actual explanation.
Emergence, without more explanation of what is actually going on at the micro and macro level, is just another way of restating the old evolutionary storyline:
Needless to say, I have never said that humans "have" "emergence".