As we know, subjectivists labor endlessly to convince us that their morality is on a par with the natural law. Clown Fish, for example, insists that, like objectivists, he follows rules and is governed by “oughtness.”
My moral values are very strongly held. They govern many of the things I do. I believe that others OUGHT to comply with my moral values.
He further states that, like objectivists, he believes that the state should also be governed by “oughtness.”
You (kairosfocus) really have to work on your reading comprehension. Your continuing insistence on disagreeing with me about our government by OUGHTness when I have repeatedly stated that I agree with you on our government by OUGHTness suggests that some unhealthy pathology is at work.
This is pure unadulterated sophistry. When the subjectivist claims that he is governed by “oughtness,” he really means that he is governed by *his* ought, not by *the* ought. In other words, he is not governed by oughtness at all because he is the governor of his own oughtness–a conveniently-crafted moral code that just happens to harmonize with his life style.
By contrast, the objectivist, who is governed by *the* ought, must submit to a moral code that binds him from the outside. Since he doesn’t choose that standard, its requirements are not always congenial with his inclinations and often demand a great deal of moral exertion. It requires leaving his emotional comfort zone to bridge the gap between where he is and where he ought to be. But whatever the cost, there is a definitive moral target to be aimed at, which means that moral growth, moral success, or moral failure are all real possibilities.
Objective morality operates in the arena of personal habits. The “ought” is the evaluator and the individual is the thing being evaluated. If there could be such a thing as a mid-term report card from nature, the objectivist’s grades would reflect his moral performance: During that span, he might receive a B+ for persistence, or a D- for courage, or A- for kindness, or an F for patience, and so on. The growth process is uneven. Sometimes, it means gaining ground in one virtue at the expense of losing ground in another. If the moral realist really tries to be good, (harder than it sounds) he will be shocked to find out how bad he is. It will become evident that the gap between the real and the ideal is much wider than was first believed. At that point, his moral failures have introduced him to himself and moral growth can begin.
The subjectivist, on the other hand, is not interested in knowing his true moral condition. That is why he indulges himself with the false consolation that there is really no such thing as a “good” man. Under the circumstances, he can spare himself the task of becoming one. If there are no moral virtues, then there are no moral targets to aim for—no gap to be bridged between the real and the ideal. The subjectivist is already where he needs to be, thank you very much.
His delusional and custom-made morality fits his behavior like a glove and, in his mind, releases him from the obligation of replacing bad habits with good ones, neither of which are real to him. If there is no need for moral improvement, then there is no need for moral exertion. Like the student who grades his own papers, the subjectivist can’t fail; he gets an A every time. Never mind that his perceived excellence is an illusion.
So watch out when a subjectivist claims that he is governed by “oughtness” and wants our government to operate by the same principle. Make no mistake. He doesn’t want the state to be governed by *the* ought, so that everyone, including the ruling class, will be held morally accountable. He wants the state to be the governor of its *own* ought, so that it can arrogate unto itself the power to grant any right, real or imagined, and pass any law, just or unjust, so long as it “feels” right.
Liberalism, subjectivism, and relativism inevitably lead to the loss of real moral standards and the political freedoms that depend on them. Meanwhile, the bullies in waiting wear the mask of false compassion until their moment arrives. It’s a well-established expression, but it bears repeating: Inside every liberal is a totalitarian screaming to get out. If you don’t believe it, just say hello to one of them while they are terrorizing or beating up supporters at a Donald Trump rally. Subjectivists just don’t feel that moral tension between where they are and where they ought to be.