Tuesday, July 13, 2010

apologies

I got to thinking about apologies today. What are they? What are they good for? It seems to me that an apology is a way of accepting blame. And blame, it seems to me, is a combination of causal responsibility and moral failing. In other words if you rearend somebody because of their error, you may have caused the accident, but they are to blame. But if you rearend them because of your error, you are to blame.

But what is this "blame" we throw around? Where is this moral failing? I honestly can't see it anymore. All I see is causation. Causation by stupidity, impulsiveness, mental illness, or something else ... but only causation.

Without blame.

And if there is no blame, can there be any apology? I don't think so. I think an apology without blame means nothing at all.

So I'm going to stop asking for apologies. I may stop giving them. Instead, causation. We'll see how that works.

2 comments:

choice passages said...

Don't blame me for posting this here, but... did you get your hands on Volume 1 yet?

abdlomax@yahoo.com said...

I noticed your comments in an early discussion on your Wikipedia User talk page, in a discussion with ScienceApologist, whom you had tangled with before as joshuapschroeder, about Wikipedia standards and sourcing, and the difference between fact and opinion or point of view, and see similar ontology here. You will have my email from this comment, if you are still following the blog. You do not have email enabled on Wikipedia (which I highly recommend). In any case, congratulations on some clear exposition, even though it fell on very deaf ears then. ScienceApologist's current user name is "9SGjOSfyHJaQVsEmy9NS". His user page has a link to a list of his former user names, which is incomplete (he had at least two identified sock puppets.) He changes the name to confuse those attempting to follow his history (and it worked, this can be seen in his sock puppet investigation pages). He predicted you would be "expelled." In fact, he has a very long block log and was site banned for a time. He has powerful friends, or he'd have been fully consigned to the dust bin (and he was, for a time).