What is war

In war and peace, yea, I still haven’t finished reading it, there is a dialogue between Prince Andrew and Pierre about war that I think is well articulated.

But what is war? What is needed for success in warfare? What are the habits of the military?
The aim of war is murder; the methods of war are spying, treachery and their encouragement, the ruin of a country’s inhabitants, robbing them or stealing to provision the army and fraud and falsehood termed military craft.
The habits of the military class are the absence of freedom, that is, discipline, idleness, ignorance, cruelty, debauchery and drunkenness. And in spite of all this it is the highest class, respected by everyone. All the kings, except the Chinese, wear military uniforms, and he who kills most people receives the highest rewards.

They meet, as we shall meet tomorrow, to murder one another, they kill and maim tens of thousands, and then have thanksgiving services for having killed so many people and they announce a victory supposing that the more people they have killed, the greater their achievement.

you don’t have freewill

Now you might say, by way of objection, that it is possible that Jim, despite his preference for coffee, might have chosen tea this morning, which surely proves that his choice for coffee and not tea was a real and voluntary choice on his part.  Well, in response, let’s imagine that instead of choosing coffee, Jim chose tea this morning and he did so of his own free will and choice.  Why did he choose tea when he prefers coffee?  Again, the same process ensues and the only way that (FW) can offer an explanation for Jim’s choice is to describe a set of prior conditions and states of affairs that looks identical to the explanation that a determinist would give.  We might say that Jim chose tea despite his preference for coffee because coffee was giving him acid reflux, or he wanted to ensure that he had a restful nights sleep and so wanted to reduce his caffeine intake, or Jim is simply bored with coffee even though it remains his preference.

This fellow says what I would, only more clearly

I may have blind spots in the freewill debate but I am yet to meet a freewill believer who has explained clearly and concisely what they mean when they talk about freewill and how they think this is possible.

Quotable quotes

As we should stand at a certain distance to view objects, so we should also stand at a distance to observe society, each has its proper point of view from which it should be regarded. It is quite right that it should not be looked at too closely, for there is hardly a man person who in all matters allows himself themselves to be seen as he they really is are