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  1. #1
    Senior Member danseen's Avatar
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    Default When will modern Western morality end?

    I guess in the contemporary West, we believe in:

    - Social equality
    - Human rights
    - Social liberalism
    - Liberal democracy

    But when will this end?

    Nothing in life is truly permanent. And we are taught from young that these are “good” ideals, but are they?

    Why can’t slavery or colonialism make a comeback? I'm beginning to think we may see the end of Western morals by the middle of this century.

  2. #2
    Senior Member zago's Avatar
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    Why would we see the end of these great morals by the middle of this century? There would have to be some reason. Reason itself only points towards something better. We have every reason to move forward, no reason to move backward. Perhaps if something awful happened, or evil people were given a way to exercise absolute power over us, we would fall back into things like slavery and superstition.

    But yes, these are certainly good ideals. That's fairly self evident.

  3. #3
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    Slavery won't come back unless it becomes more profitable than mechanisation. Why have a hundred slaves work a field when a guy in a tractor can do it without having to pay for keeping an infrastructure for them. Colonialism is a different question and I think it is very likely that Africa will be re-colonised, first by China and then by Western nations. You can construe France's activities in Mali last year and Western aid to the continent as evidence that they aren't finished with the place just yet. In the end though it will only happen if a neo-colonialist economic model becomes more profitable than the globalisation model (which I do potentially see happening.)

    My question to you is why having these back would see the end of Western ethical values? Surely they could make it so they apply only to the nationals of their respective countries.

  4. #4
    Senior Member danseen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Standuble View Post
    Slavery won't come back unless it becomes more profitable than mechanisation. Why have a hundred slaves work a field when a guy in a tractor can do it without having to pay for keeping an infrastructure for them. Colonialism is a different question and I think it is very likely that Africa will be re-colonised, first by China and then by Western nations. You can construe France's activities in Mali last year and Western aid to the continent as evidence that they aren't finished with the place just yet. In the end though it will only happen if a neo-colonialist economic model becomes more profitable than the globalisation model (which I do potentially see happening.)

    My question to you is why having these back would see the end of Western ethical values? Surely they could make it so they apply only to the nationals of their respective countries.
    I did say modern Western values. it's not as Europe in the 18th century endorsed social equality, did it?

  5. #5
    Senior Member danseen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    Why would we see the end of these great morals by the middle of this century? There would have to be some reason. Reason itself only points towards something better. We have every reason to move forward, no reason to move backward. Perhaps if something awful happened, or evil people were given a way to exercise absolute power over us, we would fall back into things like slavery and superstition.

    But yes, these are certainly good ideals. That's fairly self evident.
    Self-evident to whom?

    I would say that "better" is subjective. Morality doesn't have to be premised on improvement, merely what the many deem fit.

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    Senior Member Alea_iacta_est's Avatar
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    I don't really think we will lose those standards in the West unless something extreme happens, such as a foreign invasion, a military coup, or something else of that nature.

    In the most ideal (but not realistic) society, those terms would cease to exist because they wouldn't be enforced, and neither would any other political terminology be enforced. Resources would be available for free to whoever contributes to society (even a little or a lot), and everyone is independent of everyone else, ensuring maximum freedom.

  7. #7
    Senior Member danseen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zago View Post
    Why would we see the end of these great morals by the middle of this century? There would have to be some reason. Reason itself only points towards something better. We have every reason to move forward, no reason to move backward. Perhaps if something awful happened, or evil people were given a way to exercise absolute power over us, we would fall back into things like slavery and superstition.

    But yes, these are certainly good ideals. That's fairly self evident.
    Self-evident to whom?

    I would say that "better" is subjective. Morality doesn't have to be premised on improvement, merely what the many deem fit.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by danseen View Post
    I did say modern Western values. it's not as Europe in the 18th century endorsed social equality, did it?
    Why are you bringing up 18th century values here? You could in theory have both slavery and colonialism whilst maintaining modern Western values. A society can register slaves and colonial subjects as a group with a different set of legal rights and freedoms whilst actual citizens have access to welfare, democracy etc. All the society has to do is come to believe either system is a necessary evil e.g. explaining to citizens that if they want to be able to afford bread then the country needs slaves to work the fields. Much of society today turns a blind eye to illegal aliens who work below the minimum wage so it isn't much of a stretch.

  9. #9
    Senior Member danseen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alea_iacta_est View Post
    I don't really think we will lose those standards in the West unless something extreme happens, such as a foreign invasion, a military coup, or something else of that nature.

    In the most ideal (but not realistic) society, those terms would cease to exist because they wouldn't be enforced, and neither would any other political terminology be enforced. Resources would be available for free to whoever contributes to society (even a little or a lot), and everyone is independent of everyone else, ensuring maximum freedom.
    It depends. what if we decide to discard them? maybe the gay rights movement will be seen to have gone too far? or an increase in obesity will see rampant curbs on what we can eat?

    It's just these ideals are presented as near absolutes, but I wonder if when in the future these will be discarded. It's for people living in the 22nd century or something to live with. haha..

  10. #10
    Senior Member danseen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Standuble View Post
    Why are you bringing up 18th century values here? You could in theory have both slavery and colonialism whilst maintaining modern Western values. A society can register slaves and colonial subjects as a group with a different set of legal rights and freedoms whilst actual citizens have access to welfare, democracy etc. All the society has to do is come to believe either system is a necessary evil e.g. explaining to citizens that if they want to be able to afford bread then the country needs slaves to work the fields. Much of society today turns a blind eye to illegal aliens who work below the minimum wage so it isn't much of a stretch.
    er.. you didn't seem to understand.

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