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T O P I C     R E V I E W
Ashitaka
Member # 4924
 - posted September 17, 2010 04:25
stupid psychology quiz.

should you kill the fat man.
my score

"Your Consistency Score

Your moral consistency score is 100% (higher is better) Well done. This score suggests that you are admirably consistent in the way you view morality. In fact, none of the people who have completed this activity demonstrate greater moral consistency in their responses than you manage. But don't feel too pleased with yourself. Most people don't think about morality very clearly! "

by the way ca 25,000 have taken this quiz, i think i won because i easily recognized how theses "scientists" were trying to trick the test takers.

the thing is they ask absolute questions about all possiblilities then question you when you give a specific answer for a specific situation.
 
garlicguy
Member # 3166
 - posted September 17, 2010 08:46
quote:
Originally posted by Ashitaka:
stupid psychology quiz.

You got that right, Ash! But thanks for sharing - it was a fun exercise.
 
GrumpySteen
Member # 170
 - posted September 17, 2010 08:58
My score was:
"Server Error in '/' Application.
Object reference not set to an instance of an object."

For the record, I would push the fat guy.

Given the choice, I would ask the fat guy to jump and then push him if he refused, though, because I would feel less remorse for killing someone who refused to save five people. Unfortunately, they don't offer that option.

The moral: Don't stand next to me on a bridge if there's any possibility of a runaway train. [evil]
 
Stereo
Member # 748
 - posted September 17, 2010 09:44
Oh, warning. Spoilers. If you want to take the test, do it now, or skip this post.

Even though I didn't achieve 100% consistency, I don't mind. The problem is, there is a flaw in their logic. Making a decision, is taking an action. So deciding wheter or not to turn the train is not taking action vs. no action: it is action = 5 death, or action = 1 death.

But honestly. You have the time to turn the train, or have a fat man fall from a bridge, befor the train, but the people on the tracks can't get off... Yeah. Right. If they are tied down, jump and untying them is likely to take less time than trying to push over a man so fat as to stop a locomotive... (Newtonian physics: the man would have to be as heavy as the locomotive. Again assuming that the people on the rails are so close that they do not have the time to jump... AND that there is no wagon behind.)

As for the bomb... No other way to find the bomb than to torture the man? Who are those cops?

So, I'd like them to have their test scientifically coherent before they test my moral coherence. I can think outside the given parameters, you know... [Big Grin]
 
Xanthine
Member # 736
 - posted September 17, 2010 12:48
That was annoying. Really incredibly annoying. Do the quiz writers not to understand that taking no action is just as much a deliberate choice as taking action? Ie, by not diverting or blocking the runaway train and allowing those five to die, you're causing their deaths just as surely as you'd be causing the fat man or the guy on the side track to be killed?
 
garlicguy
Member # 3166
 - posted September 17, 2010 12:57
quote:
Originally posted by GrumpySteen:


For the record, I would push the fat guy.

No problem. I'm getting used to it.


quote:
Originally posted by GrumpySteen:

The moral: Don't stand next to me on a bridge if there's any possibility of a runaway train. [evil]

Now you tell me.
[Roll Eyes]

quote:
Originally posted by Xanthine:
That was annoying. Really incredibly annoying.

Makes you feel kinda like a lab rat, doesn't it? [Big Grin]
 
Sxeptomaniac
Member # 3698
 - posted September 17, 2010 13:14
When the question involves telling a person things that they could not possibly know in a real situation involving moral choices, it's probably a poorly-formed question. Scenario 4 was so contorted it's on par with the "a plane is on a giant conveyor belt" kind of ridiculous what-if questions.
 
garlicguy
Member # 3166
 - posted September 17, 2010 13:23
quote:
Originally posted by Sxeptomaniac:
When the question involves telling a person things that they could not possibly know in a real situation involving moral choices, it's probably a poorly-formed question. Scenario 4 was so contorted it's on par with the "a plane is on a giant conveyor belt" kind of ridiculous what-if questions.

C'mon, Sxepto! It's not like you don't have giant conveyor belts in Fresno... [Razz]
 
GrumpySteen
Member # 170
 - posted September 17, 2010 14:05
Xanthine wrote:
Do the quiz writers not to understand that taking no action is just as much a deliberate choice as taking action? Ie, by not diverting or blocking the runaway train and allowing those five to die, you're causing their deaths just as surely as you'd be causing the fat man or the guy on the side track to be killed?

I think that's the point of the quiz. Many, maybe even most, people would throw a switch that causes a death indirectly by diverting a train but will balk at directly causing the death. They don't apply their morals consistently because of the perceived difference between direct and indirect action.
 
Xanthine
Member # 736
 - posted September 17, 2010 14:23
Yeah, but aside from that, the scenario in the quiz was a pure numbers game: throw the switch and the train mows down one man. Don't throw the switch and the train mows down five. It doesn't matter what you decide to do, if it is your power to throw that switch, you're taking the active role in someone's death and no matter what you decide to do, there will be blood on your hands. The only question is, do you want the blood of five or the blood of one?

I consistently went with one because I oppose avoidable killing. The quiz called me morally inconsistent though because the authors do not understand that, under the circumstances described, sitting on yours hands is as deliberate as throwing the switch.
 
dragonman97
Member # 780
 - posted September 17, 2010 21:40
Ditto above.

</gmta?>
 
Rhonwyyn
Member # 2854
 - posted September 18, 2010 10:24
I take umbrage that they described the fall guy as fat, as if being fat somehow decreased his inherent worth and would make it easier to get rid of him.
 
Xanthine
Member # 736
 - posted September 18, 2010 11:25
It was, for lack of a better term, a philosophical exercise. The guy on the bridge needed something massive to dump in the train's path to stop the train. The writer of the exercise, in order to make it a moral quandary, needed to make it another numbers game: one vs. five. Hence the fat man. I dropped the fat man. Better to take action and kill one than take no action and thus kill five. It comes out to five deaths avoided, as opposed to one avoided. One grieving family instead of five. Etc. And my conscience would be guilt-ridden either way so it's a zero sum in that regard.

It is, however, rather ridiculous. No human that ever lived has the mass to stop a train. Not even large vehicles parked over the tracks can stop a train. And even if there were something on that bridge massive enough, there's no way it could have been dumped by one good (or not good, depending on your POV) person; who'd need a whole team and a lever.
 
TheMoMan
Member # 1659
 - posted September 18, 2010 12:12
____ A mass big enough to stop a train, would have killed the Engineer, Brakeman, and depending on Union rules the Conductor. So now it becomes 0ne(1) three(3) or five(5) that is if it was hauling fast freight, Passengers?
 
maximile
Member # 3446
 - posted September 19, 2010 03:31
quote:
Originally posted by Rhonwyyn:
I take umbrage that they described the fall guy as fat, as if being fat somehow decreased his inherent worth and would make it easier to get rid of him.

For something kinda interesting and related, have a look at: http://m.wired.com/wiredscience/2010/09/kill-whitey-its-the-right-thing-to-do/

I wouldn't push the fat man. No idea why. I only got 58% consistency anyway.
 




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