Why is Bullshit so prevalent in our society o The growing frequency of

Why is bullshit so prevalent in our society o the

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Why is Bullshit so prevalent in our society? o The growing frequency of situations in which people are expected to speak or have opinions without the appropriate knowledge of the subject matter. Plato’s Euthyphro “What is Piety?” o As in Frankfurt’s “On Bullshit” Plato is seeking a definition Summary: Socrates is on trial for charges of impiety by Meletus and Euthyphro has come to prosecute his own father for having unintentionally killed a murderous hired hand. Soc flatters Euthphro by stating that he must be an expert in Religious matters if he is willing to prosecute his own father on so questionable a charge – E concurs that he does indeed know all there is to know about what is holy thus, Socrates asks E to teach him what piety and holiness really is, since this could possibly help him in his trial. o Socrates praises E’s knowledge and begs him to teach him – Socrates does not actually expect to learn anything but rather intends to lead E out of his own false confidence in his supposed knowledge and towards a wiser and more humble acknowledgement of his own ignorance wants to show him through questioning, thus, by asking for a general definition shows E that he has no such understanding of piety at all. True knowledge of a concept comes only when we can properly define it. Argument: 1) “Holiness is persecuting religious offenders” Socrates finds this unsatisfying – asks E to identify one feature that all holy deeds have in common = “what is holy is what is agreeable to the gods” but the gods often quarrel? So what might be agreeable to one might not be to all argues Soc. 2) “what is holy is what is approved by all the gods” o what is holy gets approved by the gods because it is holy, so what is holy determines what gets approved by the gods. And what gets approved by the gods in turn determines what is approved of by the gods so what is holy cannot be the same thing as what is approved by the gods, since one of these determines what gets approved of by the gods and the other is determined by what gets approved of by the gods
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E states that surely all the gods would agree that someone who kills unjustly should be punished Soc: disputes do not arise as to whether an acknowledged wrongdoer should be punished but whether or not the person has in fact acted unjustly E must show that all gods agree that a certain killing is unjust not all killings E assures Soc that he will be able to persuade the court – knowledge requires justification, but true belief does not. o Soc asks whether holy deeds are approved by the gods because they are holy or whether they are holy because they are approved by the gods Soc gives an example: distinction b/w being x and getting x something gets approved by the gods because it is holy – it is not holy because it gets approved 3) “holiness is a kind of justice – that kind which is concerned with looking after the gods” o
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