Thursday, February 19, 2004

.:The REAL Plan For The Halftime Show:.

I’m sorry. I just couldn’t resist. Forgive me for this one and only time that I’d be a bit less discreet on this weblog, but I just had to expose this plot…

What a plan! What a plan!


If the mere fact that two half-naked sweaty man getting it on in the ring in front of a raving audience does not point to more than enough gay innuendo to disturb you from sleeping well at night, then maybe the fact that these “tough guy” remarks could actually sound really gay…

Goldberg: Brock Lesnar, your @$$ is mine!!! (How… touching.)

Jim Ross: Brock Lesnar took Goldberg from behind with that F5! (Is there any other way to do it?)

Mick Foley: “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” Obviously, whoever invented that saying was never called “Orton’s b!7ch”. (Nice pet name, Mick!)

I swear… this gay innuendo in the WWE is getting worse and worse by the day, and we’re not even taking the wrestlers with gay gimmicks into consideration!

Royal Rumble followed by RAW? Pretty amazing, if you think about it. That’s five hours of non-stop wrestling, and I really enjoyed the Rumble, in spite of missing the first two matches. The Rumble itself was great, and I loved the way Chris Benoit won the match. I pretty much enjoyed the whole thing as well. I didn’t like the ending of the Shawn Michaels vs. HHH match, though. It simply didn’t achieve the closure that it should’ve, which led to the royal screwing of Benoit’s win in the Rumble. Annoying. Really annoying.

On RAW, we saw that Rico already turned face, and is still up to his gay antics. Nonetheless, seeing Ms. Jackie and Stacy Keibler together after the match sort of snaps you out of all that gayness. The hotness of it all… Ms. Jackie isn’t so bad (She flashed Rob Conway onscreen, although I think she wore something to cover that up.), but with Stacy Keibler around, it just gets better and better. Ah, well. Moving on…


Two down, two to go. I met up with Diane yesterday, a few minutes prior to my oral examinations. It was her birthday the day before as well. Nonetheless, she was signing up for her oral examinations in Philosophy 103, and she was actually classmates with Don. We were talking about her being SSB (Single Since Birth), which is too bad, considering how nice she really is. Anyways, she explained that she felt she “didn’t deserve” being treated out by me on her birthday. Well, as far as I know, it’s not an issue of deserving it or not. It’s more of the fact that she’s a bit shy about it. That’s fine, but I do believe she more than “deserves” it, if that’s her only fear.

So when she was about to leave, I finally got to hug her. I’ve known her since 4th year High School, so I guess that explains how come we’ve been relatively close in spite of the fact that we rarely meet. Funny thing is, she thought I was going to give her a peck on the cheek. The height difference led to her smacking my shoulder. Ah, never mind. I’m just glad that I managed to establish a healthy friendship with her. I guess I’m high up on her “friends” ladder, and I’m not so sure if making the jump to the opposite ladder will be that easy for me. I wouldn’t want to gamble on that. Overall, I enjoyed that one, though. Two down, two to go.

.:Back Like Nothing Happened:.

I dropped by La Salle today, but ran into nobody I intended to run into. Saw Voltage, though. Nonetheless, I just used the time to sharpen my KOF 2003 skills, as the people challenging there were a lot better than the ones in Megamall, no doubt. I was having some measure of success with my Clark, King, and Billy Kane. Still, guys like Benimaru, Iori, and Ash had their measure of success here and there. Not bad at all, really. In spite of not running into anyone I hoped to run into, I guess that’s no big deal to me, really. I see no reason to care about it, truth be told. With a clean conscience like the one I have on this count, I guess that’s that.

Funny thing is, on OB, I’ve been more than a little vocal about my pleasure over the departure of one of those annoying members on OB, xxxgothchickxxx. She’s been lying through her teeth about pictures that were never hers, and it was hilarious because she had no idea whatsoever how to make those lies a bit more convincing. With that being said, she got banned for piracy. But no, she didn’t have enough. She didn’t care at all about being banned, so she decided to drop me on her frie… I mean, she decided to sign up again as a new member, claiming to be her own friend. How funny can that be? When God handed out brains, she must’ve been standing behind the door.

Let’s sing a song…

Na na na na… na na na na… Hey hey hey… GOODBYE!
Na na na na… na na na na… Hey hey hey… GOODBYE!

.:Because J Dante Left:.

Remember when I mentioned that one graveyard shift DJ just up and left RX, leaving poor Tom Alvarez to do boardwork for a good eight hours? The people filling him in this morning were Jojo and Troy, both from Radio 1. I guess I could do that once I hit level 5 (I’m level 4.). Still, I wonder what I’d have to do to get to that level, though. It doesn’t seem the least bit easy, if you ask me. Those two already have the voice and diction down to pat.

.:Two Down, Three To Go:.

This is a different count, though. I am almost guaranteed two A’s in two subjects by now, although I don’t want to place too much hopes on my Philo 104. For all I know, I could’ve botched up my oral examinations, especially since I didn’t leave it with a very good feeling, as I believe I didn’t adequately answer the last question Mr. Bulaong gave me. I noticed he was straying away from the thesis statements, though. That made the whole thing all the more challenging.

Still, Political Science should already be an A, as I got a 91.8. That was one of the scary subjects for me, so I’m glad that I can now relax on that one. I only have Theology and Media Law and Ethics to worry about now. If I ace all these subjects, you all know what happens, neh? I hope I got an A in Philosophy, though. I felt confident about my answer about the thesis statement, but the follow-up question of an argument against Kant being a minimalist and whether or not Christ’s dying on the cross passed the universality test clearly was problematic to me.

.:The Transcript (Abridged And Paraphrased):.

Mr. Bulaong: I’d like you to first explain thesis statement number 10.

Marcelle: Sir, in this thesis statement, we talk about autonomy being truly autonomous if it lays down the moral law for itself. First of all, we realize here that autonomy is a value that has to be enacted upon. If one does not exercise his autonomy, then he cannot claim to have it. At the same time, moral law, as its fulfillment clearly is beyond price, is of exceeding dignity. This dignity is precisely that which makes autonomy be at its fullest. At this point, we can say that autonomy is simply dignified when it lays down the moral law for itself.

Morality, on the other hand, cannot be truly moral if it is only done for the sake of some other thing. Otherwise, we are going to deny the fact that it is beyond price and possesses dignity. With that being said, we can therefore say that for morality to be truly moral, it must be done autonomously. The person doing morality must be doing morality for the sake of doing morality, and not because it’s convenient to do so, nor because it will yield something great in return.

You see, the difference between an autonomous man and a heteronomous man is simply this. Law tells us to “do this BECAUSE” (::snaps fingers on left hand, one, two, three::). The heteronomous man will follow suit (::snaps fingers on both hands, one, two, three::). The autonomous man, on the other hand, will simply “DO THIS”. Nike. Just do it (::snaps fingers on right hand, one, two::). Therefore, while the law tells the autonomous man to “do this BECAUSE”, he appropriates this law without the incentive and “DOES THIS” (::snaps fingers on left hand, one two, three; snaps fingers on right hand, one, two::).

Mr. Bulaong: What’s with the snapping of fingers?

Marcelle: Notice that I’m snapping thrice on one hand, twice on the other. The autonomous man is the same in practice: oblivious to the third factor of incentive or threat, simply carrying out duty for its own sake. Try it, sir. You can’t do it.

Anyways, with that being said, we can therefore say that number one: autonomy is truly autonomous when it allows itself to be dignified by morality, as morality is done for its own sake, so there is no ulterior motive that dictates upon one’s will. Number two: morality is truly moral only if it is done autonomously, lest we attach a price to our morality, which ideally should not be the case.

Mr. Bulaong: What if someone were in this room right now, telling you, Marcelle, “You’re pathetic. You think you’re free, but you’re letting Kant fool you. Look at me. I cheated my way through college. I was free to do so many other things. While you let your sense of morality dictate to you and make you spend countless hours studying, uploading these thesis statements. Look at me: in being immoral, I am free.” Marcelle, how would you reply to that?

::debater mode, on::

Marcelle: Sir, the problem lies in the fact that he is confusing the concept of freedom. I mean given that he’d have a better job than me when I end up teaching…

Mr. Bulaong: Why is that?

Marcelle: Assuming he’s a management major, money-wise, he’d be making more money than I ever hope to with my dream job. But you see, this immoral person is doing things out of something within him that is not him. Maybe it’s his greed, his ambition, or anything else, this is clearly not his full being. On the other hand, the autonomous man acts because of his sense of morality, his conscience (Outside note: In Theology, his flow of being/primordial level of commitment would suffice.) is that which tells him what to do, which is a significant part of his being. As such, maybe one’s greed tells him to do more things, so he can do a lot more things. But this doesn’t mean he’s the one doing it. It’s greed talking. Or ambition talking. He’s not free: he’s enslaved to his ambition or greed. He’s subject to something that is not himself.

At the same time, just because the Philippines is “free” and “autonomous” does not mean that it does not follow any laws. In fact, its being free precurs its making and enforcing its own laws. If it doesn’t, it’s not being free. It’s being anarchic. There’s quite a difference between freedom and anarchy, in this respect.

You follow your own moral law without asking why. It’s not even “Why not?”, so even Mr. Callasanz’ urban legend falls flat.

Mr. Bulaong: What urban legend?

Marcelle: That one where they said he was supposedly in his final oral exams with Fr. Ferriols, and the question was simply “Why”. His answer was “Why not”. As far as Kant goes, “Why not” is not the right answer, simply because it means there is just no counter-motivation to follow duty (Outside note: That is, if there’s outside motivation, there already is an answer to “Why not”.). “Why ask why?” is a better response, then.

Mr. Bulaong: I see. What about if he says, “Of course not! My ambition is part and parcel of me. I am my ambition. I am more free because I can do whatever I want. You are fooling yourself with Kant.”

Marcelle: Now I know why Fr. David hates Kant.

Mr. Bulaong: He said that?

Marcelle: It’s hearsay, but acfcording to my blockmate, he said so himself.

Mr. Bulaong: I see.

Marcelle: So… how much does your ambition cost? After all, if you make it to being a manager, and yet you still have a boss to answer to, wouldn’t you want to further yourself up that ladder? Morality, on the other hand, asks for nothing more than fulfilling its duty. You achieve this, there’s closure. There’s no closure in your desire. No closure in your ambition. Fulfilling moral duty does. You fulfill this moral duty, you can move on to fulfill another moral duty (Outside note: I personally disagree with myself here. This is loopy reasoning, and greed and ambition can use the same reasoning at this point.). At the same time, morality admits to no price. Compared to ambition, morality cannot be swayed by this or that carrot.

So then… how much does your ambition cost? If your ambition knows no bounds as it clearly does, then will you ever really achieve any closure in life, or will all your actions be directed towards this solitary ambition of yours? I don’t think that’s being free. I think that’s being enslaved by your own ambition.

Mr. Bulaong: Let’s refine his argumentation further. “But you see, my telos is success. I want success for the sake of success. It just so happens that the success I find myself in is making myself rich.”

Marcelle: I don’t want to use Aristotle, but to point out, if I did, it would be so easy to debunk this. Still, let’s stick to Kant. But you still refuse to address: how much does that success cost to you? Will five million pesos more make you happier? Morality admits to none of that. Your being immoral will, and I do not wish to make myself an example, so a truly morally upright man will clearly not be named a price to. If that be the case, then clearly, he is free. After all, I initially mentioned that the autonomously moral man is simply doing what we would call in the vernacular, “Pinahihirapan ang sarili” (“Making things hard on himself.”). Now, the more appropriate way of looking at it is simply what you, sir, said yourself: you are your own boss. An immoral man who is overridden by desire and ambition cannot be called the captain of his fate or the master of his soul. Clearly, unless he addresses this weakness in his argument, as one success of form is good as another, it is simply going to fail. Success as a telos is clearly not choiceworthy.

Mr. Bulaong: All right. I was hoping you could address a criticism about Kant, that is, that he is minimalist. After using the universality test, we see that we can do so little. This is why Kant is criticized as being minimalist. I hope you can answer this by using what I asked you at the start of our discussion on Kant, “What ought I to do?”

Marcelle: (::pauses for a few moments::) Sir, I realize now why we watched the film “Riles” before taking up Kant. If there’s one thing I don’t expect to forget about the film, it’s the scene where the husband said, “Kahit pangit iyan, mahal ko iyan.” (“Even if she’s ugly, I love her.”) It was a clear earmark of moral duty: no matter how the going was, even if his wife was a nagger, and if they had a car, she’d be a backseat driver, I can clearly see that he was doing it out of duty. So the question of “What ought I to do” is simply to follow my moral duty, precisely the moral duty that I have imposed upon myself.

Kant may seem to be minimalist because after using the universality test, you only can do so many things, but clearly, this is not so. There are so many ways of giving alms, of doing the right thing. What is important here, more so, is that it’s not Kant who tells us that this is what we should do. It is ourselves telling us what we should do, because of our autonomy. As such, Kant isn’t being minimalist. He is simply showing us an option for us to consider for ourselves. It would be us walking through the door, not Kant doing it for us. This is why the test is universal. As such, numeretically speaking, Kant is not minimalist. Autonomically speaking, if we were to admit that he is, everyone else is as well. This is quite simply the way it happens to be.

As such, what we ought to do is follow what duty tells us to do. There may not be so many things we could do, and as such, I could even mention them all right now, but clearly, because Kant does not care about how one does it so long as he does it for its own sake, then there are a myriad number of ways to do what is right in Kantian morality.

Mr. Bulaong: Marcelle, pahabol lang (Just a follow-up.): Do you think Christ’s sacrifice of dying on the cross passes the universality test?

Marcelle: No. Christ is God as well as man, which gives him quite an exception in Kantian morality. (Outside note: It is potentially absurd to think that every man should die in order to save everyone else. Nobody is qualified to do that except Christ. With that being said, everything else about Christ’s ministry passes the universality test, though. If we were to say self-sacrifice for the sake of others excluding death, that could arguably pass the universality test as well, though there is some commonsensical contradiction to it in that it endangers human existence and self-worth. Christ was following His moral duty, and because of His unmatched qualifications, He clearly had the right to do what he has done. This is a more satisfactory answer to the question, to my belief, than the haphazard one I put together. You can tell sir wasn’t asking me questions that were anywhere in the text. I guess he thought the thesis statements were “too easy” for me, in that I already answered them here.)

I believe that Christ was an exception in his qualifications.

Mr. Bulaong: Thank you, Marcelle. Pag-isipan mo pa yung sagot mo (Think your answer over some more.).

.:Thesis Statements For Theology:.

At least three people whom I know will greatly benefit from this, as for the sake of one of them mostly, I would go ahead and answer the following Thesis statements by Monday, at the latest.

Thesis Statement 1A: This course consists in an effort at sustained, directed, and personal thinking out of Christina Faith with the aim of fostering the ongoing growth of seniors toward full maturity in the Faith, as active members of the Christian community, the Church, capable of responding as true disciples of Christ to the urgent challenges of Filipino life today.

Thesis Statement 2B: Conscience is our ultimate and subjective norm of moral behavior, judging the morality of concrete individual acts by applying universal moral laws, thus involving both objective and creative subjective dimensions. The gradual formation of an informed “Christian conscience” is marked by fundamental stages (instinctive, moral, and religious) developing true freedom together with the recognition of moral obligation, and grounded on prayer and the Spirit’s prompting daily conversion towards fuller, responsible “new life” in Christ.

Thesis Statement 3A: Personal primordial commitments develop through widening horizons involving breakthroughs into deeper meaning, values, and freedom. They are gradually formed within the universal human quest for self-identity, clear purpose in life, overcoming guilt and evil in the world, trust/hope in salvation, unity, and friendship.

Thesis Statement 4: Growth toward permanence in Christian commitment comes through the gradual deepening of the roots and enhancing the quality of all our commitments. This entails focusing on the Paschal nature of their core: authentic love.

For Christians, authentic love is grounded in a personal relation to Jesus Christ, actualized by the Holy Spirit within His Body, the Church and developed through Word and Sacrament: studying, praying, and living His “Good News”, supported and inspired by a full sacramental life.

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