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    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Does how they go about it matter?

    If a group manipulates, spends money on false advertising, gets the media to attack anyone that disagrees through money and popularity, threaten careers and black listing, threaten political pressure (through lobbying with the aforementioned money), deceives (by lying or hiding evidence) or other subversive tactics to get their ideologies to be accepted, is it really the correct way to do it? What happens when all of these things come to light later down the road, won't that color peoples perception about the subject?

    What do you think? No naming groups please, just your opinion on if tactics matter.

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    Flumph

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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    Advertising is about manipulation, and to an extent all advertising is false advertising (an advert never gives a true image of the product). However there are degrees in things, and the additional behaviour you are describing is unacceptable.

    As humans, we tend to trust other people: this is how scams work - if people were paranoid and untrusting it would be harder to scam people. When deceit to this level comes to light it always colours people's perceptions.
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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    It would depend on how far the above mentioned tactics go and for what cause.
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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Manga Shoggoth View Post
    Advertising is about manipulation, and to an extent all advertising is false advertising (an advert never gives a true image of the product). However there are degrees in things, and the additional behaviour you are describing is unacceptable.

    As humans, we tend to trust other people: this is how scams work - if people were paranoid and untrusting it would be harder to scam people. When deceit to this level comes to light it always colours people's perceptions.
    Yes, so some of the things are unacceptable and the rest are a matter of degrees? Interesting answer.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dallas-Dakota View Post
    It would depend on how far the above mentioned tactics go and for what cause.
    Well people being black listed for doing their jobs correctly should tell you how far the tactics go.

    Why does it matter what the cause is? Are you really saying the ends can justify the means in some cases?

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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    this thread is a whole lot of hot air unless we can make examples and debate actual occurrences... which we can't because that would go against the rules of the forum.
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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    I wouldn't say it's the correct way, but I can definitely think of worse ways to go about it. Starting with 'blow **** up" and going from there.
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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lokiare View Post
    Why does it matter what the cause is? Are you really saying the ends can justify the means in some cases?
    It's the old 'killing Hitler' question; could you kill a five-year old boy with his whole life ahead of him if you knew that he would one day plunge the world into war and create concentration-camps?

    Where any other option is plausible and likely to work, no. When working in politics, where everyone else is doing the same thing, the questions approach areas which are more grey...

    Or, to look at it from another perspective, take one look at espionage. There is nothing honourable about it, but it still remains the best way to accomplish certain tasks for the greater good. James Bond is a sociopath, just like the real people he was based on, but he protects the Commonwealth from worse kinds of sociopath.

    Where no other option is as effective and the outcome is worse, maybe we need to accept that the world is not so black and white.

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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    Going about drawing support to your cause with willful deceit is the wrong way to go about things.

    Someone having gone about things the wrong way, does not mean the cause is wrong. Or that it is right. It means the person's an ass.

    There are situations where there has been misinformation spread that was due to unknowingly misunderstanding the data/info. This does not make the person an ass, unless that person deliberately avoids finding out facts, and doesn't care that their information was wrong.

    No group of people has a monopoly on *******s. No group of people greater than 5 or so has a complete lack of them. Unfortunately, the loud people get the press, and ratings, especially if you can pit groups of loud *******s against each other. Someone can try to be a reasonable voice of "wait, what are the actual facts," but they get shouted down.

    You also need to be careful with blacklist accusations. "So-and-so is being blacklisted and silenced because he doesn't toe the conventional line" might actually be "So-and-so is being derided and shunned because he used unethical practices and harmed children to make a buck." Of course, once threats of conspiracy pop up it's easy to dismiss any actual facts, and sensation sells papers.

    Ideally, everyone would have the necessary background in all fields to find and investigate primary data sources, and judge the validity of claims accurately without needing someone (who might be a lying *******) to interpret it.

    Nobody has that much breadth and depth of knowledge, and the time to utilize it for all subjects/claims.
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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lokiare View Post
    Yes, so some of the things are unacceptable and the rest are a matter of degrees? Interesting answer.
    That's not quite what I meant.

    I meant that, almost by definition, Advertising involves both manipulation and a degree of false representation: You sell a product by emphasising the good and ignoring (or de-emphasising) the bad.

    An advert that says "Buy our product: it sucks" to a background of fingernails running down a blackboard is unlikley to shift many units. (Unless you are selling vaccuum cleaners, of course).

    Political adverts woild go a little further down the line ("Vote for us, we're great! Don't vote for them, they suck").

    So, nobody expects an advert to be entirely honest about its subject matter, but there is a reasonable expectation.

    (The honesty (or otherwise) of advertisment comes up in the Lord Peter Wimsey story Murder Must Advertise by Dorothy L Sayers - including a discussion between the detective and the police chief on how far you could legally go in advertising. Sayers used to work in an advertising company. For many reasons I highly recommend the book)

    However, there is a degree to how far you can go in this, and it is not so much a sliding scale as a a cliff edge. A group that is using straight-up deception has gone past the edge (let alone one using intimidation and other such delights).

    And yes, once a party crosses that line you are looking at massive damage when they get caught. Not just because of the abuse of trust, but because many of the things involved may even be illegal. Of such things scandals (and cover-ups) are made,
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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lokiare View Post
    Why does it matter what the cause is? Are you really saying the ends can justify the means in some cases?
    Even if you exclude scenarios that are more contrived like the time-travelling Hitler killing, I feel there are definitely times when the ends can justify the means. Many controversial topics regarding human rights, equality and the like are very important to various people. I can see why in some cases even using deceptive means to convince others to go along and make changes to society could be worthwhile.

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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    Yes, How an entity goes about conducting itís business matters.

    See thereís this concept called character. How an entity acts reflects upon the character of that entity. In other words; what they do or say shows what that entity actually believes to be important to them, what their point of view is concerning any given topic.

    Weíve all had the experience of being treated poorly while conducting business (shopping, dining out dealing with other businesses or customers, you name it). This is an example of character. An entity with good character (and therefore good quality of service or product(s)) will have few issues, and take steps to correct any issues that arise. An entity with poor character will not.

    Letís come up with an easy analogy:
    A politician claims to stand for X, Y and Z and gets elected on those stances. But when heís in office, he works against stances X, Y, and Z. This politician has poor character because he lied to get elected, he doesn't really stand on those stances. Now if that politician works for stances X, Y and Z while in office, then he has good character because heís doing what he said he would do once elected. Whether he's successful in accomplishing those points is immaterial.

    This works in personal life too, particularly for those who are in the public spotlight (celebs, politicians again etc). If our above politician cheats on his wife (and people find out) that hurts his character, reputation and credibility because heís breaking his sacred vows of marriage for sex, heís cheating. We know heís been cheating on his wife, now everything else he does can be called into question.

    We see this all the time when someone says something they shouldn't have on twitter, facebook or other social media mediums. People make all sorts of terrible comments over the net and when celebrities do it, more often than not, theyíre called out on it and are forced to apologies (forced apologies are worthless btw). Every time this happens that personís character is called into question.


    (Note: not being political, just making an easy analogy).

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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    Yes, the way people achieve their ends matters, and everyone should do so with integrity and honesty. However:
    1. The inethical few should never be taken as representative of the innocent majority, and any facts and data involved must be taken on its own merits.
    2. one must always be careful that one doesn't criticise the activities of the side one doesn't agree with far more harshly than the side one does, especially if one's own side does all the same things except far worse and with far more damaging consequences. Speck, log and all that.

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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    I think that the ends justify the means in certain situations. It gets difficult when you look at certain systems, like world war II. Though Allied troops slaughtered hundreds of thousands of Nazis, they ended up likely saving millions of innocent lives. Do the ends justify the means? maybe, I'm not sure. Regardless of how disgusting a person may be, I do not believe that any one has the authority to take away that person's life. However, it becomes difficult when that life could be exchanged for ten others. If the ends justify the means, then it is absolutely acceptable to kill someone to save ten others. But if breaks down as soon as someone is killed, because that is an entire situation on its own. The end is that person's death. The mans was their murder. It remains unjustified.
    To sum it up, there are only very strict cases in which the ends justify the means. It occurs within systems where participants are earnest and devoted to their position.

    Maybe if I was in a more vicious mood I would argue endlessly about how the ends justify the means regardless of the means, but I think that is a different discussion entirely, and for now I'll stick with the above

    So to answer the OP, it is not the FAIR way to do it. It is, however, practical. Most big companies do it to some degree. So a company is doing things "correctly" if they can pull it all off without getting caught for at least a while. However, it is morally reprehensible, and I do not think that any company should do it. It's only the easiest way. Just look at Wolf of Wall street.

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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    What if the group in question is unfairly accused of the tactics you mention? It is a fairly popular tactic to try and discredit a movement. There are things you mention which are fully justified (political, social, and financial pressure are common and effective means for just about any movement), and there are things which are fully unjustified (deliberate lying about the facts of their case, though there's significant room for editorializing depending on circumstances). The thing is, accusations of lying are often themselves lies.
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    Default Re: Does how they go about it matter?

    There are many groups that use these tactics, but the ones I have in mind openly admit to using these tactics in their books and on their lobby websites. There really isn't a question of whether they are doing it, only whether people are ok with it or not and what kind of damage will happen when the general public finds out.

    As to the opposition, they don't use those tactics at all, in fact it is now illegal to use those tactics against the group I have in mind, due to the aforementioned political lobbying and anyone that does it openly gets into legal trouble.

    Edit: Even if I were on the side of a group and believed in their cause, I would distance myself from them if they used these tactics because of the moral implications and the future backlash that would be bound to happen.
    Last edited by Lokiare; 2014-03-21 at 07:04 AM.

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