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    Global Moderator

    Posts: 8928
  • Darwins +1130/-27

I don't actually like arguing about this subject.  It isn't that I'm ignoring the replies to me, it's that it feels like fighting a hydra, and I'm fresh out of torches.  I get frustrated, exasperated, and annoyed, and I have to spend more and more time excising my emotions from my responses.  That means that I'm more and more likely to say something I would regret later on.  I don't want to do that and you guys don't deserve it.  The argument is basically going nowhere, anyway; I could rebut your points, but it would basically be by restating my arguments, which is pointless.

The irony of this discussion is that efforts to put the functions of the brain into a coherent theory can be used to support a purely deterministic explanation for things; yet that deterministic explanation is simply not very useful for trying to explain human behavior.  Let's say for the sake of argument that you could predict someone's future actions exactly with 100% knowledge of their past actions.  The problem is, getting that 100% knowledge is effectively impossible.  That means that the deterministic explanation is just not that useful, no matter how accurate it might be.

Furthermore, that argument leads to problems down the line.  Take Anfaulgir's statement that we shouldn't blame people for their own actions because they had no choice in the matter.  The problem with that argument is that a person who does not believe they are in control of their own actions can do truly terrible things because they don't feel responsible.  (It's similar to the problem of psychopathy)  That's probably why we evolved the sense of responsibility, because a group of people who do not feel responsibility for what they do to others are less likely to survive than a group of people who do feel responsibility towards others.
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