Island Life by David Slack

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Island Life: I am not a quitter

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  • FletcherB,

    I also find nose-picking quite objectionable.... maybe that should be illegal too?

    West Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 893 posts Report Reply

  • Julie Fairey,

    @FletcherB I agree! Also what about thread-crashing? That really riles my styles.

    Puketapapa Mt Roskill, AK… • Since Dec 2007 • 234 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    "Of course __ should be illegal, otherwise you're just encouraging it."
    Oh, if the case were only that easy to make,
    I'm sure we'd all have a little list.

    Sending your kids to a single-sex school
    Piddling in a crowded paddling pool
    Posing and preaching and pulling flies' wings
    These are a few of my most reviled things.

    (Advisory note: items chosen for rhyme, rhythm and absurdity.)

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1940 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    Ah, crud. I forgot that a long underscore would be read as toggled italics. That should have appeared as:

    "Of course ( ) should be illegal, otherwise you're just encouraging it."
    Oh, if the case were only that easy to make,
    I'm sure we'd all have a little list.

    Sending your moronic kids to my school
    Piddling in a crowded paddling pool
    Posing and preaching and pulling flies' wings
    These are a few of my most reviled things.

    (Advisory note: items chosen for rhyme, rhythm and absurdity.)

    (Apologetic note: sorry for the bandwidth abuse, which I actually do find annoying myself)

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1940 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    (Looks unbelievingly at the first line of the verse.) I really should just give up here.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1940 posts Report Reply

  • Brent Jackson,

    You can't stop now linger ... look at the title of this thread !

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 620 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I agree! There are a very few fundamental truths. I think the ones we can agree on are:
    Do not murder.

    Assuming we're talking about murder as defined in the law, no.

    Do not commit adultery.

    I am in a loving relationship of 20 years' standing (actually nearly 30 if you could when we firstmet) and I place a very high value on fidelity and the respect that underlies it. But should it be right up there with murdering another human? No.

    Do not steal

    If you're genuinely hungry, steal away, especially if there is not a direct personal victim. Following a "do not steal" edict to the point where you extinguish yourself makes neither moral or practical sense.

    , and Do not commit perjury.

    We lie a little bit to each other every day. A world where we did not would be conceivable, just very different.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Grant Dexter,

    Russell. Are you only here to disagree with everything I say? Doesn't that take a lot of unnecessary effort?

    When I say, "Do not murder" I define it in the obvious way. I define murder as intentional and wrongful killing of another person. If the laws of men do not uphold this standard then I will still live by it. If you want to disagree with me on do not murder you are required to say that murder is sometimes justified. Calling murder justified strips the word of all its meaning. Murder is unjustified killing so justified murder is an oxymoron.

    When I say, "Do not commit adultery" that is a completely separate issue. Why do you need to make an issue of how it relates to murder? If you agree with me feel free to say so.

    When you say, "steal away" you are encouraging irresponsibility. I say that if one is hungry then he should work. It is never wrong to not steal and there is never the necessity to do so.

    When you say "we lie .. every day" that does not mean we are justified in lying to a judge. Nor does it even mean we are justified in lying.

    What is with Kiwis and the argument that bad things are done so we are justified in doing them too..?

    Taipei, Taiwan • Since Mar 2007 • 256 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I'll up you one, Grant. I'm an adulterer. How intolerant of me do you think that justifies you in being? Do you think I should have been imprisoned? Who would that have benefitted?

    It's not something I'm proud of, but it's not something I'm ashamed of, either. My ex-husband is happily remarried with a kid he adores. I've been with my partner for the last fourteen years - if you include the time I was married to someone else. We adore each other and our kids and I wouldn't give them up for anything.


    So:

    I think the ones we can agree on are:

    I think it's pretty clear the answer is 'no'. You clearly agree with yourself a lot, but that wasn't your point. You think 'do not commit adultery' is a fundamental, I think 'butt out of my private life and mind your own business' might be a fundamental, if I hadn't found life entirely made up of shades of grey and pretty much devoid of black and white.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Nor does it even mean we are justified in lying.

    I actively encourage parents to lie to their kids about Santa Claus. I do it myself. And the tooth fairy. Easter Bunny. These are my sins.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Grant Dexter,

    It's tragic that you can be so callous about a thing so sensitive, Emma. My reaction to you would be to tell you how inappropriate you actions are and why.

    Kyle, are you prepared to blame your bank robbery on a tooth fairy in court? :)

    Taipei, Taiwan • Since Mar 2007 • 256 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    .

    We should be intolerant of murderers, adulterers, thieves and liars

    Depends on the circumstances, as others have so eloquently pointed out. I'm intolerant of the people who kill in cold blood. I'm not intolerant of those who kill in selfdefence. I'm intolerant of those who deliberately cheat time and time again. I'm not intolerant of people who have unhappy domestic situations and seek the right person to live their lives with, while they are still in a relationship. I'm intolerant of people who steal others' livelihoods and celebrate it. I'm tolerant of those who are hungry and in need, and the only way they can live is by nicking stuff. I'm intolerant of people who live their lives with deceit and dishonesty every day, in order to aggrandise themselves. I'm very tolerant of people telling little white lies to spare others' feelings. All very grey, isn't it? Life's like that. Well, for me, anyway. I feel sorry for people who are so black and white that they hold others and themselves to such excruciatingly high standards. It must be very hard to be so perfect.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3136 posts Report Reply

  • samuel walker,

    Russell. Are you only here to disagree with everything I say? Doesn't that take a lot of unnecessary effort?

    not unnecessary lest you end up believing that the lack of a retort implies agreement. This is as you must agree [ in fact you revel in it] a place for robust debate...

    When I say, "Do not murder" I define it in the obvious way.

    actually you don't. and judging by your prior arguments you are likely to twist this seeming simple definition into proof that some other tangentially related topic. like abortion, for example, by adding the confusion that a just conceived embryo is a person.

    When you say, "steal away" you are encouraging irresponsibility. I say that if one is hungry then he should work. It is never wrong to not steal and there is never the necessity to do so.

    you are starting to sound like that most frakked up of all vigilantes 'mr A' :
    " there is good, there is evil, and there is nothing in between."

    What is with Kiwis and the argument that bad things are done so we are justified in doing them too..?

    you are partially right there, although it certainly aint a kiwi trait, but i have seen it with mine own eyes, and it is weak. however I see no sign of it in this thread!

    Since Nov 2006 • 203 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    It's tragic that you can be so callous about a thing so sensitive, Emma. My reaction to you would be to tell you how inappropriate you actions are and why.

    Grant, you don't know me at all, although you feel you have the right to judge me. I'm not callous. But the situation, about which you know almost nothing, was not simple. I suspect situations like that are never simple.

    What I don't understand is why you feel compelled to judge at all.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    "It is never wrong to not steal and there is never the necessity to do so."

    What the hell? How completely ignorant of history can you be? Judging by your surname, you share the same British heritage as many of us, and you ought to know that at various times in the British Isles the poorest people have had neither work, nor charity, nor food, nor any prospect but starvation while the rich ate.

    Would you steal to feed your children? Would that be wrong if there were no alternative? It seems that your approach is simply to claim that there are always alternatives, but I just don't believe that. I don't even need to point to hypotheticals. We live in a world right now where some societies are organised sufficiently unjustly that property rights don't have fundamental moral force.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    Oh, and also, I am irresistably reminded:

    M: Oh look, this isn't an argument.
    A: Yes it is.
    M: No it isn't. It's just contradiction.
    A: No it isn't.
    M: It is!
    A: It is not.
    M: Look, you just contradicted me.
    A: I did not.
    M: Oh you did!!
    A: No, no, no.
    M: You did just then.
    A: Nonsense!
    M: Oh, this is futile!
    A: No it isn't.
    M: I came here for a good argument.
    A: No you didn't; no, you came here for an argument.
    M: An argument isn't just contradiction.
    A: It can be.
    M: No it can't. An argument is a connected series of statements intended to establish a proposition.
    A: No it isn't.
    M: Yes it is! It's not just contradiction.
    A: Look, if I argue with you, I must take up a contrary position.
    M: Yes, but that's not just saying 'No it isn't.'
    A: Yes it is!
    M: No it isn't!

    A: Yes it is!
    M: Argument is an intellectual process. Contradiction is just the automatic gainsaying of any statement the other person makes.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • rodgerd,

    I define murder as intentional and wrongful killing of another person.

    Should I pick on this for being weasel fors, or a circular definition. It's both really.

    I wonder whether it indicates a genuine confusion of thought or a lack of honesty in debate?

    In any case, I'l cheerfully ad that I think that murder can and should include deaths that result from deliberate actions that could reasonably be forseen to result in death(s), even if the intent to kill anyone isn't there. I think everyone involved in the decision not to fix the Ford Pinto, for example, ought to have been banged up.

    So, guess what, I don't agree, either.

    and you ought to know that at various times in the British Isles the poorest people have had neither work, nor charity, nor food, nor any prospect but starvation while the rich ate.

    How's that quote on the immigrants section of Te Papa go - the 19th century Englishman arriving in New Zealand and describing as "A place where an honest man need not steal to live"?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 512 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    Grant, you don't know me at all, although you feel you have the right to judge me.

    Right. That does it. I'm now paging that dude from an earlier thread who thinks anyone who smokes pot is an irredeemable narcissistic asshole (or whatever it was he said). I want he and Grant to have a cage match where they cast blanket aspersions on all people they deem morally inferior, and the winner can be crowned with the title of 'Judgeypants, Lord of the Inflexibles!' Or something.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • Grant Dexter,

    One at a time, huh?

    Jackie:

    Depends on the circumstances, as others have so eloquently pointed out. I'm intolerant of the people who kill in cold blood. I'm not intolerant of those who kill in selfdefence.

    Who, in their right mind, would call self defense murder?

    I'm intolerant of those who deliberately cheat time and time again. I'm not intolerant of people who have unhappy domestic situations and seek the right person to live their lives with, while they are still in a relationship.

    If you consider your state of happiness good enough reason to disintegrate a family then I don't think there's much we will agree on. I have high standards for my relationships. I do not expect people to walk out of a relationship because they are not happy.

    If, as I suspect, your use of unhappiness was a euphemism for abuse then we find good reasons why the relationship should end. We never find justification for adultery.

    Not that I haven't seen people try...

    I'm intolerant of people who steal others' livelihoods and celebrate it. I'm tolerant of those who are hungry and in need, and the only way they can live is by nicking stuff.

    Stealing is never the only way to survive. People have voices for a reason. They have bodies so they can work. Any effort a person might go to in order to gain a meal would be far more properly directed in trying to find a job.

    I'm intolerant of people who live their lives with deceit and dishonesty every day, in order to aggrandise themselves. I'm very tolerant of people telling little white lies to spare others' feelings.

    The standard I quoted was, "Do not commit perjury". There should be no law against lies unless they are to a judge.

    All very grey, isn't it? Life's like that. Well, for me, anyway. I feel sorry for people who are so black and white that they hold others and themselves to such excruciatingly high standards. It must be very hard to be so perfect.

    I'm not perfect. But you're right. There are a whole range of different situations that require good judgment in order to distinguish. If a man kills another man then good judgment is required to say if that was murder or self defense. If a man sleeps with a woman then good judgment is required to say if that act was legal or not. If a man takes what is not his then good judgment is required to determine how he should pay. And if a man lies to a judge then good judgment is required to determine truth in the case.

    Unfortunately the word judge seems to be considered more vulgar than certain other forms of language these days...

    Taipei, Taiwan • Since Mar 2007 • 256 posts Report Reply

  • Grant Dexter,

    Grant, you don't know me at all, although you feel you have the right to judge me. I'm not callous. But the situation, about which you know almost nothing, was not simple. I suspect situations like that are never simple. What I don't understand is why you feel compelled to judge at all.

    My response was based on what I do know. You claim to be unconcerned either way about your past and have no qualms about sharing it with total strangers. I would consider your past to be very sensitive and would never discuss it.

    I judge because I am alive. Why do you consider people capable of not judging?

    Taipei, Taiwan • Since Mar 2007 • 256 posts Report Reply

  • Grant Dexter,

    Should I pick on this for being weasel fors, or a circular definition. It's both really.

    Murder is defined as unjustified killing. Go read a dictionary or something if you don't have anything useful to contribute.

    I wonder whether it indicates a genuine confusion of thought or a lack of honesty in debate?

    Neither in my case. Both in yours.

    In any case, I'l cheerfully ad that I think that murder can and should include deaths that result from deliberate actions that could reasonably be forseen to result in death(s), even if the intent to kill anyone isn't there. I think everyone involved in the decision not to fix the Ford Pinto, for example, ought to have been banged up.
    So, guess what, I don't agree, either.

    That's because you can't see the difference between negligence and murder. Guess what? The fact that you are angry about Pinto's does not make your opinion on what should happen to the designers correct. It just makes you a bad judge of a situation.

    Taipei, Taiwan • Since Mar 2007 • 256 posts Report Reply

  • Grant Dexter,

    Judging by your surname, you share the same British heritage as many of us, and you ought to know that at various times in the British Isles the poorest people have had neither work, nor charity, nor food, nor any prospect but starvation while the rich ate.

    I know that you paint a picture in order to evoke sympathy. I know there are poor people. It's not a crime to have little money. It's not a crime to do some hard work. It is a crime to steal.

    Would you steal to feed your children?

    No. They'd go hungry till I found help or an honest income. Would you teach your kids to be criminals just because they didn't have much food for the week?

    Would that be wrong if there were no alternative? It seems that your approach is simply to claim that there are always alternatives, but I just don't believe that. I don't even need to point to hypotheticals. We live in a world right now where some societies are organised sufficiently unjustly that property rights don't have fundamental moral force.

    And these people are, what, dying off in their thousands, I take it?

    Taipei, Taiwan • Since Mar 2007 • 256 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Kyle, are you prepared to blame your bank robbery on a tooth fairy in court? :)

    Well I've never robbed a bank, but I'll try that defence. You said:

    Nor does it even mean we are justified in lying.

    Just pointing out what a silly statement that was, clearly we all lie all the time, and it's entirely justified and often a good thing.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Murder is defined as unjustified killing. Go read a dictionary or something if you don't have anything useful to contribute.

    I don't think you should tell people to go look at a dictionary unless you've done it yourself, because you look silly when they do and you're wrong.

    Murder isn't defined as unjustified killing. Talking about circular definitions, murder is defined as an 'unlawful killing'. In three dictionaries that I checked. You can murder someone and it be seen as justified.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Grant Dexter,

    I take it you see no connection between justice and law...

    Taipei, Taiwan • Since Mar 2007 • 256 posts Report Reply

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