Saturday, September 15, 2012

moral outrage part II

Agency, as I understand it, is phenomenological. It's the body as experienced, or what a normal person might call "subjective" (a term best avoided, I think, because it's set against "objective" in an unfortunate Cartesian legacy dichotomy). The agent is me, right now, and the way I choose how to be, a competition for self-perpetuation in my body between different patterns of world.

To place demands on other humans to act in a way that conforms to certain rational patterns, call them principles, developed in my mind in order to make me feel better, is something I'm surely OK with but, epistemologically, it takes some serious leaping.  

When I select someone as a target for my moral outrage, an Obama, say, it's, first of all, because they caused someone harm and secondly, because from my perspective, it could have easily not happened. If the harmer had simply been me, it wouldn't have.

I assume that Obama and I have most of the same hardwiring and are genetically both capable of drone bombing or blogging against drone bombing. He chose drone bombing. Because he's evil? I chose the other thing. Because I'm good?

There's only pain and pleasure and the causing of these by highly embrained animals. Forces that self-perpetuated in me failed to do so in him and vice versa. Where was "I" when all this was happening?

to be continued, hopefully...

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