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January 3, 2012 / compassioninpolitics

Why is it that highly educated people commonly accept and try to convince others that there are no such things as fixed criteria of good and bad?

1. Ego/Identity. Desire to be free from barriers or moral culpability (as well as the possible attendant feelings of guilt).
2. Lack of depth in either debate or philosophy education (including both logic, critical thinking, and nuance). They’ve had authorities in power use these memes and they repeat them. Its the equivalent of sound-bite or bumper sticker philosophy.
3. Modern worldviews (radical individualism and post-modernism) spread by a number of key societal vectors (TV, culture, music, the academy, etc..) which ignore the lessons of history both ethical (coersion is bad, violence is bad, and intentional killing and coersion are generally bad) and cultural (ie the lessons of the Romantics were still relevant in the Enlightenment era).
4. Cognitive dissonance. They haven’t fully thought out what a world where people actually believed that would look like (they don’t know what violence feels like or they’ve forgotten or intentially suppressed it via avoidance)
5. The failure to understand that relationships, trust, fairness, justice, and reciprocity have meaning and value.
6. Short hand rationalization for anti-social behavior. There isn’t anything per se wrong with the short hand, just that it can potentially be empty, hollow, and even heartless.
7. Seeming trendiness. Its a form of pseudo intellectualism.

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