Dan Barker’s FANG Turn Out to Be a Milk Tooth

This post her been moved to True Freethinker where it was posted at this link.

1 comment:

  1. I'm a bit confused about your treatment of future knowledge and free will. It's probably simply that I don't know what you mean by free will, but whatever the source, I'd appreciate clarification.

    I assume that you consider yourself to have free will, so let us assume that Mariano does indeed have free will.

    Let us also assume, purely for the sake of fabricating a useful hypothetical scenario, that it has been personally Revealed to you by your god that tomorrow you will purchase a handgun with serial number 4102 from a particular store, and on the evening of on August 12 2019, at precisely 6 pm, while having dinner with your mother, you will deliberately and in cold blood shoot her point blank in the forehead, with no cause or excuse for discharging the gun save to prematurely and violently end her life.

    I assume you're a sufficiently decent person that you have difficulty even imagining the above scenario, and have an even harder time imagining circumstances in which you would want or choose to take such actions. I also assume you are sufficiently clever that you could contrive of circumstantial conditions under which you would want to take such actions (perhaps your god also revealed to you that, should you not end your mother's life in just such a way, her actions would lead to consequences you would find even worse, whatever that would be). Please go with your gut feeling that there would be no such extenuating circumstances.

    That is, let us assume that you do not desire the future event to happen, and if you have any choice in the matter, you will take any and all steps to ensure it does not happen.

    Let us make the reasonable assumption that you have the ability and opportunity (and desire!) to not purchase a gun. In particular, that you could choose to not purchase that particular gun. You have it on the Highest Authority that gun 4102 is the key to a terrible future, and if you possess a shred of sanity, you would not only /not choose/ to buy it, but you would actively /choose not/ to buy it, and go to great lengths to avoid buying it.

    Yet for all that these are the choices you would make, the Fact is that you do buy it, and you do murder with it.

    How do you reconcile free will with known predestination, when the agent in question does not choose to do what they end up doing? You're free to choose any color car you want, as long as you want black?

    , and I assume that implies that even if you