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torzzzzz

I like a good baddy just as much as the last person, but is there any truly evil people in Shadow run?

I play a number of games including stuff like 40k (the one with the models) and I have always played chaos in one form or another. Is there scope for this in Shadow Run, I have hurd tell of Toxic mages and so forth but apart form them, are there any really, really bad guys?

It would be interesting to put a totaly chaotic ( in the true sense of the word) character into shadow run and see what happens and how long they last??

torz x cyber.gif
Backgammon
Well, check out Threats 1 and Threats 2, which contains the collection of the worst baddies from the SR world.

HOWEVER, Shadowrun does well in maintaining that everything is grey, there is no black and white. Even the worst "Evil" people, like maybe Aztech Blood Mages or Winternight, do not believe they are evil. They are acting in what they believe is in someone (usually themselves) best interest. They simply lack the values of compassion and sympathy.

QUOTE

It would be interesting to put a totaly chaotic ( in the true sense of the word) character into shadow run and see what happens and how long they last??


Just so we're on the same wavelenght, this is the "true sense" of the word. And yes, that would be funny to see.
hermit
QUOTE
I like a good baddy just as much as the last person, but is there any truly evil people in Shadow run?

SR knows no monolithic "evil" such as many fantasy worlds do, including Warhammer (whcih has a surprising absence of a counterweight of pure good, considering how the good guys tend to be very fascist and cruel themselves, though). No force that just wants to harm all that lives for no better reason because it wants to. It has, however, froces that come quite close, being nearly completely nihilist:

- Invae/Insect Spirits
- Winternight
- Aztechnology's upper crust
- the Horrors (who never really showed, but loom in the background)

All of those have motives making them what they are, though. Invae want to conquer other planes because theirs is too full. The Azzies are out for power, more power, and even more power. The Horrors need pain and suffering to feed. Winternight possibly is closest to being evil, as they're practically nihilist, though even they have this Ragnarok-and-we'll-be-gods dream.

And, finally, no good evil believes it is evil, it always believes it's misunderstood. All else is cheesy D&D type manicaeism.

As for your character concept, yeah, that'd really be a fun character. I'd not give him a long time, though; eventually, someone is gonna snap and blow his head off. smile.gif
torzzzzz
I know it would be good to come up with the concept though I think it could be my next character to go out with a bang in time for SR 4 ??

torz x wink.gif
hermit
Heh. Then again, players can be very understanding, much more tha<n their characters should be, if the chaotic character is fun to play with. A friend of mine once had a Pyromaniac, whom he really played out (a mage, at that, aspected hermetic fire mage pyromaniac, and yes, his name was Pyro). In-Character, we should have blown his head off on the first run, but he was funny, and thuis, eventually retreated from the shadows at 100 Karma, when the player got bored of him. *shrugs*
Edward
In 40K chaos is evil. It I a point that makes it almost imposable for me to play a role playing game in the world as nobody can be benevolent and believe in freedom of the individual.

In SR almost every PC is chaotic to a greater or lessor extent, at least as D&D would define it. All shadow runners work outside the system and break laws. Food fight is the only run you can get threw without being guilty of a crime and everyone I have seen play it had 3 counts before they got in the store. Loan star (the enforcement of the law) is seen as something to be avoided at all costs.

Running teams rarely operate as well organised units and I have never seen a clear chain of command. Even when it is agreed who will negotiate I hav seen runners interrupt and spoil the negotiations. Although runners may individually have a code of ethics they are frequently ignored when not convenient or so loosely defined as to be immaterial. ďI never double cross an employer unless they set me up or give me bad or incomplete informationĒ

So what do you mean when you say chaotic.

Random is never fun, I have never managed to go more than an hour playing time without killing a character that acts randomly.

Every person has a code of behaviour even if they donít understand it (in fact most people donít understand the limits on there behaviour).

Edward
torzzzzz
QUOTE (Edward)
In 40K chaos is evil. It I a point that makes it almost imposable for me to play a role playing game in the world as nobody can be benevolent and believe in freedom of the individual.


tell me about it i have a 3000 point army and it lays all to waist (well most of the time!)


torz x biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif
TeOdio
Real life has plenty of examples of what "real" evil is. Since the dawn of organized societal constraints, murder has always been considered one of the most heinous of acts, especially pre meditated murder. Evil can even consume a people in a mob mentality sort of way, like the rise of Fascism and Racism in the early 20th century. We all have our limits of where the line is crossed, but in truth, evil pervades every segment of our society. In Shadowrun it is even worse. Acting "good" is putting others before yourself. Acting "evil" is putting yourself before others, whether it is acting out violent fantasies on the defenseless at one end of the spectrum or merely turning a blind eye to injustice because you don't want to risk having harm come to you. Most of the major NPCs and Players in Shadowrun do not act with very altruistic motives. Yet, they all have something tugging at them saying, this might not be right. I doubt the Invae or the Corrupt have a conscience at all. Can you NOT be evil in Shadowrun? It's hard but as a great philosopher once wrote, the more virtuous man is the one that wants to commit the sin, but doesn't because he knows it is wrong, even more virtuous than the man that never wanted to commit the sin in the first place.
nuyen.gif nuyen.gif nuyen.gif
Fygg Nuuton
unless you can prove there is a benevolent force at work in the world, there is no such thing as evil

its just a proverbial finger people like to point at each other

bin laden is evil, sadam is evil, the pope is evil, hitler is evil. these are all common but incorrect, they all did what they found to be right.
Da9iel
You can't say "sin." That's not politically correct!

Fygg: Is that like saying, "Unless you can show me a true vaccuum, there is no such thing as mass/energy?"
Crimsondude 2.0
QUOTE (TeOdio)
Real life has plenty of examples of what "real" evil is. Since the dawn of organized societal constraints, murder has always been considered one of the most heinous of acts, especially pre meditated murder. Evil can even consume a people in a mob mentality sort of way, like the rise of Fascism and Racism in the early 20th century. We all have our limits of where the line is crossed, but in truth, evil pervades every segment of our society. In Shadowrun it is even worse. Acting "good" is putting others before yourself. Acting "evil" is putting yourself before others, whether it is acting out violent fantasies on the defenseless at one end of the spectrum or merely turning a blind eye to injustice because you don't want to risk having harm come to you. Most of the major NPCs and Players in Shadowrun do not act with very altruistic motives. Yet, they all have something tugging at them saying, this might not be right. I doubt the Invae or the Corrupt have a conscience at all. Can you NOT be evil in Shadowrun? It's hard but as a great philosopher once wrote, the more virtuous man is the one that wants to commit the sin, but doesn't because he knows it is wrong, even more virtuous than the man that never wanted to commit the sin in the first place. 
nuyen.gif  nuyen.gif  nuyen.gif

Wha...

My Evil professor (Yes, Evil. PSC 192 011) would give that a C.
Fygg Nuuton
you can't be evil if you believe what you are doing is right

and without a benevolent force there is no ultimate evil.

Da9iel
You sure can be evil even if you believe you are doing right. That's why vigilantes are arrested and tried. It's wrong. Mind you, this is coming from someone who believes in moral absolutes. If you don't believe in moral absolutes, there is no common ground on which to discuss evil.
shadow_scholar
The concepts of "good" and "evil" depend entirely on your morality, on your standards. When you burn right down to the core you judge how you see these "good" and "evil" entities because, in their minds, both think they are righteous. Any labels of "good" or "evil" applied to them are placed there by you.
Da9iel
As the honorable Reverend Doctor Jesse Jackson put it, "Common ground. Common ground. Common ground." We don't have it.

I don't claim to know everything that is good and everything that is evil, but I do believe good and evil are independent of point of view. They are not dependent on your morality.
Fortune
Damn right they are subjective. Very very few people view their actions as 'evil', no matter what those actions may actually be. The ones that do view their actions as evil, and do them anyway are usually insane.
Da9iel
"There are absolutely no absolutes!"

I have intentionally lied in the past. I knew it was wrong. I did it anyway. Why? Am I insane (based on intentional lying)?

It is my contention that subjective morals are no morals at all. Others in this thread have said as much. If you are going to use the words "moral" and "evil," either deny their existence or understand that there is a right and wrong.
Fortune
QUOTE (Da9iel)
"There are absolutely no absolutes!"

I have intentionally lied in the past. I knew it was wrong. I did it anyway. Why? Am I insane (based on intentional lying)?

It is my contention that subjective morals are no morals at all. Others in this thread have said as much. If you are going to use the words "moral" and "evil," either deny their existence or understand that there is a right and wrong.

Wrong does not necessarily equate to evil.

And you'll note my use of the word 'usually' and the qualifier 'very few'.
Da9iel
Wrongdoing is evil. It can range from what many consider an extremely mild--even excusable evil to full-on balls-to-the-walls genocide type evil.

"Usually" "very few"

Everyone I know has done something they know is wrong. Maybe it felt good, maybe it benefitted them some other way. If a man says he has never done something that he knew was wrong, he is insane (or has poor memory).

edit: The problem usually comes when someone has to turn the finger at themselves and admit his or her own evil nature.
Fortune
QUOTE (Da9iel)
Wrongdoing is evil.

I heartedly disagree, which just goes to prove my point that good and evil are subjective.
Da9iel
No, our understanding of evil is subjective, but evil itself is not. I'll leave it at that and say no more. This is quickly turning into an "IS NOT" "IS TOO" argument, as it always does. Thank you for your views, all.
Fortune
Fair enough. smile.gif
Crimson Jack
If everyone claims that the object sitting on the table is an apple, but you see an orange, what does it make it? You feel it, smell and taste it, and by all accounts it is an orange. Yet everyone else tells you that it clearly is an apple.

Does the object change due to the understanding of its nature by the viewer? I say no. Only our interpretations of things change.
Edward
Remember that the definition of what is evil has changed over time.

It is true murder has always been considered evil but what justifies the killing of a man has changed.

In the past killing somebody because they killed (or even just injured) a family member was considered justified. Today most countries would charge you with murder for that.

Being insane is now a defence for murder but not so long ago you would have been considered evil because you where insane.

200 years ago petty theft was considered such a terrible act that the penalty was death and it was only the benevolence of the magistrate and the state that meant the penalty was often reduced to spending the rest of your life in hard labour with inadequate food. Some may not have seen this as right but no more was said against it than is now about the fact that crimes robbery (that dose no physical harm to a person) carys 3 times the sentence of common assault (that could leave a person in hospital but doing no permanent harm). (that is the case in Australia now)

If we bring religious beliefs and superstition into the decision of what is evil things get even more complicated.

At various points in time from various points of view every religious and political believe has been considered evil. I especially like those points where atheists are accused of devil worship considering that like god they do not believe in the existence of the devil.

Being left handed has been considered a sign of evil, as has any birth defect or mental illness. Sex outside of marriage, eating the flesh of a pig.

And recently we have decided that it is evil to forbid a religion (only a few hundred years ago failing to try and convert the heathens was allowing evil to persist), it is evil to discriminate against somebody based on there race or sex, although the very laws that protect races seen as being in a lower position now do discriminate. In the past it was expected that you would preferentially hire somebody from your extended family, religious group or social circle (in that order). Slavery in all forms is now considered evil where historically slavery was not uncommon (although historically slaves where better treated than they where before the American civile war and given considerable legal rights, a point that makes historical accuracy in D&D imposable as few understand it)

I wish I could know what standards we hold today that will be scoffed at in 200 years. It would be amusing.

Edward
Crimson Jack
Considering the definition of evil,

QUOTE
e∑vil    ( P )  Pronunciation Key  (vl)
adj. e∑vil∑er, e∑vil∑est

1.  Morally bad or wrong; wicked: an evil tyrant.
2.  Causing ruin, injury, or pain; harmful: the evil effects of a poor diet.
3.  Characterized by or indicating future misfortune; ominous: evil omens.
4.  Bad or blameworthy by report; infamous: an evil reputation.
5.  Characterized by anger or spite; malicious: an evil temper.


I'd say all but #3 fit the bill for most shadowruns, either by the PCs themselves or the nasties I throw at them. Evil exists, chummers... by the definition anyhow. biggrin.gif
hahnsoo
QUOTE (Crimson Jack)
Considering the definition of evil,

QUOTE
e∑vil    ( P )  Pronunciation Key  (vl)
adj. e∑vil∑er, e∑vil∑est

1.  Morally bad or wrong; wicked: an evil tyrant.
2.  Causing ruin, injury, or pain; harmful: the evil effects of a poor diet.
3.  Characterized by or indicating future misfortune; ominous: evil omens.
4.  Bad or blameworthy by report; infamous: an evil reputation.
5.  Characterized by anger or spite; malicious: an evil temper.


I'd say all but #3 fit the bill for most shadowruns, either by the PCs themselves or the nasties I throw at them. Evil exists, chummers... by the definition anyhow. biggrin.gif

As for number 3, if a Shadowrun is involved, you KNOW something bad is going to happen. *grin*
Crimson Jack
Yeah, you're right. There's a bit of that in the Harlequin adventure as I recall.
hyzmarca
Evil is a perception of the imperfect mind. Because we lack omniscience we cannot comprehend the greater good that comes immediate suffering. To the perfect mind, its all good.
Sandoval Smith
Except for what's bad.

*edit*
Hit 'post' too soon.

That statement fails on account of what happens when you've got more than one omniscient being wandering around. As soon as you've got one working on a plan that achieves Ultimate Good that results in less suffering than the other, you7ve got your evil again.
shadow_scholar
But if one omniscient being's ideas differ from another's, then that isn't true omniscience.
Vuron
In general I'd say I loathe moral relativism (it's only evil if the person who does it thinks it's evil) as I truly believe there are objective standards for what represents "evil" behavior.

That being said very few people in SR are of the over the top evil badasses like a Sauron (and pretty much almost all fantasy evil) or a Sith Lord (Star Wars is basically fantasy in space). While there are things like the Invae and Darke most of the "evil" is of the standard everyday variety that comes when greed and self-interest wins out over empathy and compassion.

The Corporator who is motivated by greed and approves testing a toxic product on humans is certainly evil however he generally isn't going to work each day thinking "How can I ruin more of the world today?" well unless he's a senior executive at Aztechnology. He might not think he's evil but he certainly is not adverse to "evil" means to meet his desired ends.

Further even the really bad organizations like Aztechnology aren't monolithic evil but are rather made up of tons of people acting in a immoral and amoral way on routine basis.

Of course depending on whether you buy into the horror plotline (which seems to have fallen away with the seperation of the ED and SR gamelines) then there is a very real force of evil waiting on the outside looking in and waiting. However if you really follow ED wholehog the horrors are not monolithic but individually motiviated in fulfilling thier alien desires.
torzzzzz
But surely to do something 'evil' is only so in the eyes of the mass populous? If know one is there to say it is evil then is it? brings to mind the theory, will a tree that falls in a forest make a noise if no one is there to here it?

the same concept appears to be relevant to good and bad!

why is is bad? because from a very early age you are told it is, never why ....it just is?

torz x smile.gif

*damm spelling*
Vuron
QUOTE (torzzzzz)
But surely to do something 'evil' is only so in the eyes of the mass populous? If know one is there to say it is evil then is it? brings to mind the theory, will a tree that falls in a forest make a noise if no one is there to here it?

the same concept appears to be relevant to good and bad!

why is is bad? because from a very early age you are told it is, never why ....it just is?

torz x smile.gif

*damm spelling*

Basically you are trying to put out the logic behind the position of moral relativism. Personally I tend to view that philosophical construct as both flawed and dangerous. I don't want to turn this into a big discussion of moral philosophy but for the most part moral relativism as a construct is often reviled by philosophers as a cop out.

Objective standards of moral behavior might vary among groups but there seems to be an acceptance that there are absolutes as to "fits within a construct in which mankind is able to function as a society". At it's most pared back level it pretty much gets down to "Don't Kill" and some variation of a social contract. Without that you pretty much can't function within society.
Charon
I think the only absolute taboo that have held in all culture at all time are incest and murder in the strictest sense. If you start stretching just a little, like sex between cousins or killing someone of a lower social status, then these behaviors were/are seen as acceptable in some place and in some era.

Consider that Thomas Jefferson had slaves even as he was writing the declaration of independance. Was he evil? Not for the era. But today if I try to get myself a slave anywhere else than on collarme.com , yeah, that probably would be seen as evil by most people, wouldn't it?

EDIT : Hmm, can't think of many culture were theft is acceptable either, though some have had decidedly bizarre notion about ownership.
Nikoli
I dunno, I think Shedim and Greater Shedim fall into the Evil category pretty darned well.
nezumi
QUOTE (Charon)
I think the only absolute taboo that have held in all culture at all time are incest and murder in the strictest sense.

I can rule out incest. Most incestuous relationships, son mother, daughter father, son father, etc. are allowable or even common custom in some culture somewhere. Even look at the Old Testament. Adam and Eve's grandchildren had to come from SOMEWHERE.
Vuron
QUOTE (nezumi)
QUOTE (Charon @ Apr 13 2005, 02:56 PM)
I think the only absolute taboo that have held in all culture at all time are incest  and murder in the strictest sense.

I can rule out incest. Most incestuous relationships, son mother, daughter father, son father, etc. are allowable or even common custom in some culture somewhere. Even look at the Old Testament. Adam and Eve's grandchildren had to come from SOMEWHERE.

There is some scholarship that tends to view the incest prohibtion as being related to a form of social contract due to the negative effects of sustained inbreeding on the sustainablity if a species. So if you follow that basic morality comes biological needs the incest prohibtion is a moral absolute developed to insure the common good of the society.

hyzmarca
QUOTE (Nikoli)
I dunno, I think Shedim and Greater Shedim fall into the Evil category pretty darned well.

Shedim are just the penultimate sqauaters. If a body is just going to be left to rot what's wrong with someone fixing it up and doing something constructive with it? They have to live somewhere. Unless your willing to find space in your body for poor homeless Spirits then you really shouldn't complain about what some do to find shelter.
Dawnshadow
Actually, if I'm remembering correctly, the descendents of Adam and Eve married the 'other people'...

Moral relativism is strange. It's a cop out, certainly -- but it's also the only answer that makes sense in many ways as well -- since morality is very nebulous. People define their own moral codes with every choice they make. They decide how important something is, they decide whether or not something is wrong by what they do.

Even going into something as basic as 'don't kill' and a social contract aren't necessairily good or evil. A contract that binds society to the whim of a madman is a very evil construct. A society that insists that it is better to let a madman kill your family then you then kill him is also 'evil' -- just not in the way that people normally consider it. True pacifism is evil in that sense as well -- if you have the ability to stop a rape, for instance, but don't, then you have endorsed the rape, whether or not you try. If you don't try your hardest, then you have said 'I don't consider it that evil.'

Most explanations ever given for what is universally evil can be broken down when you start examining the small stuff that makes them up. Even something like blood magic in Shadowrun -- there's disagreement on whether or not it's 'Evil', or just 'prone to be evil'. I forget who said it, but their group had a very interesting (and accurate, in my opinion) view of it.. the punk using blood magic to fireball them is evil, the mage using her own blood to heal them is 'really really weird'.

Likewise.. universally good tends to break down. Almost anything given as 'always good', can potentially be evil under some circumstances. As an example.. brining a child into the world for love of your partner and love of child-to-be, with the intent to raise the child to be him/herself, and the best person he/she can be. Pretty close to the ideal of why to have a child, and hard to conceive as evil... but if the child turns out to be the next Stalin?

And.. there's so much in the grey area that relativism covers but absolutes don't. Vlad Teppes, for instance, is both a hero and a villan, depending on where you are.
Vuron
QUOTE (hyzmarca)
QUOTE (Nikoli @ Apr 13 2005, 03:07 PM)
I dunno, I think Shedim and Greater Shedim fall into the Evil category pretty darned well.

Shedim are just the penultimate sqauaters. If a body is just going to be left to rot what's wrong with someone fixing it up and doing something constructive with it? They have to live somewhere. Unless your willing to find space in your body for poor homeless Spirits then you really shouldn't complain about what some do to find shelter.

Now if they turn into proactive bodysnatchers that will pretty much cross the line into most people's concept of really bad.
Charon
QUOTE (nezumi @ Apr 13 2005, 03:28 PM)
I can rule out incest.  Most incestuous relationships, son mother, daughter father, son father, etc. are allowable or even common custom in some culture somewhere.

Common, yes. Open the newpaper and you'll hear of it. But it's not acceptable in any culture that I've ever heard of at the parents/children and sibling level.

Only example of legally sanctioned incest I can think of are the pharaos when they needed to keep the line 'pure'. If you know of whole cultures that find incest acceptable and saction(ed) it in customs and laws, feel fre to point them out to me.
Charon
QUOTE (Vuron @ Apr 13 2005, 03:38 PM)

There is some scholarship that tends to view the incest prohibtion as being related to a form of social contract due to the negative effects of sustained inbreeding on the sustainablity if a species. So if you follow that basic morality comes biological needs the incest prohibtion is a moral absolute developed to insure the common good of the society.

I agree with that line of thinking.

To me, culture is partly a society's survival instinct.

I read a wonderful anthropological book built around a similar thesis ; cows, pigs war and witches (or something like that). It explained some apparently very weird customs in term of their usefulness to society's survival.
shadow_scholar
Now I don't think legality should be confused with moral judgement. Everyone does things that are considered illegal but that doesn't necessarily make them evil, nor does doing something most would consider evil always be illegal. In my eyes, laws are only there to serve order, to ensure we don't slip into a chaotic society. The odd thing is that those laws were written according to someone's morality.

To get to the purest form of evil I think of it as doing harm to others. If you do something with the sole interest of doing harm, then that's evil. But I consider that to be rather rare. Some have said that murder is universally evil, but I'd kill someone if they intended to do kill me. Is that murder? Depends on who you ask. Shades of grey, man, shades of grey. The only difference is how much of a shade or tint you see in those greys.
Charon
QUOTE (shadow_scholar @ Apr 13 2005, 06:10 PM)
Now I don't think legality should be confused with moral judgement.†


If it's illegal, someone made the moral judgement that it's wrong to do it.

What's illegal and evil never match up perfectly in any given individual's perception because laws usually reflect a society consensus, and one that is often a few years behind the current time, at that.

QUOTE
But I consider that to be rather rare.† Some have said that murder is universally evil, but I'd kill someone if they intended to do kill me.† Is that murder?†


No it's not murder. It's self-defense. Don't muddle the issue even more than it already is! Murder doesn't equal killing. A police officer who shoots down a suspect while on duty and following procedure or a citizen that exercise his right to self defense as defined by law didn't commit murder. Murder is the unlawful killing of another human being.
Dawnshadow
Murder is the catch-all phrase for any killing which there isn't a legitimate explanation given for and accepted of. The police officer shooting down the suspect could be murder -- if the decision is made that he didn't have sufficient cause. Self defense could be murder.. if you break the person's neck because he gave you a bloody nose. And it's especially murder if they don't actually TRY to kill you. If I intend to kill my roommate, and he knifes me as I sleep, then it's murder, as an example.

But... none of those might be EVIL. The police officer-- might be guilty of murder under the law, but it might not have been evil. Could be the inquiry decided his judgement was faulty early on and the suspect shouldn't have been a suspect at all, and so when the suspect turned, officer caught a glint of metal and pulled the trigger... all over mistaken identity? The roommate? If it was 100% certain that I was going to wake up and strangle him, and he had no way to prevent it but knifing me as I slept? Not evil. Still murder.
hyzmarca
QUOTE (Charon @ Apr 13 2005, 06:35 PM)

If it's illegal, someone made the moral judgement that it's wrong to do it.

What's illegal and evil never match up perfectly in any given individual's perception because laws usually reflect a society consensus, and one that is often a few years behind the current time, at that.

If it's illegal then someone made a judgement that it is unfair to society as a whole. Morality doesn't have anything to do with law. At least, morality shouldn't have anything to do with law.

Generally, things that are illegal are the things that cause an objective harm to society. No one will claim that it is evil to refuse to pay taxes but the Federalis will still have you locked up for it. They'll have you locked up because if no one paid taxes then the government would shut down.

It is a purely pragmatic law, as all the good laws are.
Edward
Many laws today where not made because the act itself was wrong.

For example. Nobody really thinks just for carrying a 15CM sheath knife I am evil or that the act of doing so is wrong but it is still illegal for me to do so in Australia. This is because many of the people that would want the knife would do something bad with it, unfortunately that leaves those of us with a good reason to carry such a knife around at times in a difficult position.

On the point of the historical acceptance of incest in the old testament I think it was lot that was drugged by his daughters so they could sleep with him and for this all 3 of them where rewarded.

Personally I would define an evil act as an act witch causes suffering without due cause.

The perpetrator of that act is only evil if he could foresee the suffering but regardless of weather or not that was his aim.

Although this is reasonably objective 2 points remain that are hard to define. What is due cause, was the person aware.

Edward
Charon
QUOTE (hyzmarca)
If it's illegal then someone made a judgement that it is unfair to society as a whole.

...

Generally, thaings that are illegal are the things that cause an objective harm to society.

It's not that hard to argue that harming society is evil. It's not hard to argue that tax evasion is evil : The selfish people who use up society's ressource without paying their fair share, leaving the law abiding citizens to bear the weight of financing necessary services can easily be argued to be evil. It just takes a certain mindset, a certain perception.
Glyph
I think good and evil are fuzzy at the edges, but are still more than mere subjective judgements. But even if you believe in moral relativism... there will still be "evil" people. The assertion that there are no evil people, because no evil person sees himself as evil, is too simplistic. It takes everyone's justifications at face value, when those justifications are often concocted to cover up things that the person doing them knew were wrong, based on his own moral code.

An example would be someone who shoplifts from a store, and says "They're crooks just like me, because they cheat people with their high prices. And their insurance will cover it anyway, and the insurance companies are even bigger crooks." Does that mean that the person actually thinks he has not done anything wrong? Or does he know he has done something wrong, and is trying to assauge his guilt? So don't assume that, say, a shady real estate broker isn't a bad person, because he doesn't have the same morals that most people do. He could very well have a strict moral code, and be breaking the heck out of it.

I don't know many people who don't subscribe to some kind of moral code or other, and I bet every one of them has broken their own moral code at some point or the other. And yes, I include myself in that category. nyahnyah.gif
Edward
I agree that almost everybody has a moral code and breaks it occasionally.

I would say everybody but it is unwise to speak in such absolute terms.

The point is that there are levels of breeches. Not every breach of your own moral code will make you think you are evil even if you did not bother with a justification. For example, take the typical middle class lady. Swearing is considered bad and against there moral code but would they consider themselves (or another) to be evil if they said a swear word occasionally.

I think not, bad yes but not evil.

Personally the only reason I donít sware often is it offends people but I honestly do not understand what power words like fuck, hell and shit have that these people can not bare to hear them. If you know pleas tell me.

Most people I know (and in this I know there are exceptions) have never breached there own moral code to the point that had they observed another doing those acts they would have considered them evil.

Edward

Edit: Wow the board let me say that.
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