The Sunset of Morals, ctd
In a new post, Joel Marks responds to the criticisms of his defense of amorality. He prefers that we replace morality-based language by communicating our preferences.
But why do I care so much that people are using a misleading language of morality? Especially since I have also argued that morality is often just window-dressing for our nonmoral desires. My answer is that invoking the god of morality, like invoking the God of religion, serves to add a hefty dose of imprimatur, authority and self-assurance to the pre-existing strength of our desires, thereby bumping up the level of damage that is likely to ensue from trying to get our way in the face of opposition. The most horrific acts of humanity have been done not in spite of morality but because of it.
It’s possible his strategic choice would lead to better ethics generally. If we had some convincing reason to believe that, I’ll be with Marks advocating universalists give up moral-Esperanto in favor of more personalized language. But as a matter of whether morality is objectively real, Marks makes his case by defining it as a “metaphysical conception as a truth or command that comes to us from “on high.”” If morality must come from “on high,” I agree with Marks. Unfortunately, he doesn’t respond to why he’s so restrictive. I guess he just prefers it.