[ExI] Worst ever

William Flynn Wallace foozler83 at gmail.com
Thu Aug 13 20:35:06 UTC 2020

And Hitler loved dogs.  So what?  If you put the good on one side of the
scale and the bad on the other, where does Genghis Khan's scale tilt?  I do
totally agree that probably no one in history was totally, 100% evil, and
that good and evil are nebulous concepts (that they are endlessly discussed
by philosophers is one clue) applied by people with their own biases.  But
I have no trouble calling one murderer evil (if it is established that he
did not act in self-defense, blah blah blah).

What if a person does something with totally pure intentions, but it turns
out badly (involuntary manslaughter, for one - "Just having a bit of a
fight, eh?")?  Furthermore, he does not follow up to see the consequences
because he has no empathy and hence doesn't care, and so continues to do
the same thing?   Like Anders, I am a consequentialist.  bill w

On Thu, Aug 13, 2020 at 2:11 PM Stuart LaForge via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> Quoting Bill Wallace:
> > It is my earnest hope that Stalin, Hitler, and Mao have set records for
> > killing people that will last forever.   Surely among the worst people
> who
> > have ever lived.
> Those guys might have been bad by 20th century standards, but none of
> them set any records. In fact the record is still held by Ghenghis
> Khan who killed over 40 million people. That is more than Stalin,
> Hitler, Mao, and Pol Pot combined. Furthermore there were fewer people
> in the world back during the Mongolian conquest so Ghenghis Khan has
> been credited with killing fully 5% of the world population at the time.
> According to scientists, Ghenghis Khan killed enough people to stop
> deforestation and allow trees to regrow thus reducing carbon dioxide
> levels and temporarily reversing global warming.
> https://www.livescience.com/11739-wars-plagues-carbon-climate.html
> Ghenghis Khan also united pretty much all of Asia with part of Europe
> in the largest land empire of all time, making the Silk Road safe for
> merchants to travel and thereby promoting trade between east and west.
> He did lots of other surprisingly good things things too like
> abolishing slavery and torture throughout his empire.
> https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/68894/11-cultural-breakthroughs-genghis-khan-achieved-during-his-reign
> So perhaps real people are a little more complex than the simple moral
> absolutism of good and evil allows. In fact, whenever someone is
> called "evil" these days, it is almost always politically-motivated
> hyperbole.
> Stuart LaForge
> _______________________________________________
> extropy-chat mailing list
> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org
> http://lists.extropy.org/mailman/listinfo.cgi/extropy-chat
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.extropy.org/pipermail/extropy-chat/attachments/20200813/5e4698a4/attachment.htm>

More information about the extropy-chat mailing list