Now I first would like to deal with the issue of logical fallacies in his thought. The fact that people did not create themselves does not contradict the existence of free will. The idea of Nietzsche was that since we are not self created (which he would call being free agents) then we have no free will. In spite of the powerful rhetoric behind his words, this does not logically follow.
This is just one example but the logical fallacies in his thought are numerous. [It is possible to prove that moral relativism is false.] [Actually it is possible to prove relativism itself is false. Not just moral relativism See the essay of John Searle from Berkley.] Rather I would like to mention some of the good points he makes. First he holds that morality is in general a weapon used against others, not a tool of self improvement. In fact, it obvious that this is what he does not like about it. If he would be in fact against morality, then why would this bother him? If it is a lie used by the powerful to subdue their enemies, then what could be wrong with that? If Nietzsche would be against morality, then he should welcome this.-- The point it he hold from Jewish-Christian morality, but he hates how it is misused. I can only agree with him in this.
He is right that people are different. But this is not an argument against morality. I boil milk and broil steak. Milk and steak are different. But this does not make how I cook them to be arbitrary or non objective. Again Nietzsche has a great point, but the logical conclusion is different from what he thinks. [He is of course knocking Kant that wanted to place all morality on one universal principle--much like the ancient Greeks wanted also.]
This I think is relevant for today, since I think it is the Nietzsche critique against morality which is the basic foundation of the Democratic Party in America today. People don't really think too deeply into morals, but they hear that they don't need to be moral and they like what they hear. Especially since psychology has becomes dressed with an air of science and is basically saying the same thing--it gives extra power to this. [To real scientists it has become clear that psychology is a pseudo science and that is why it has been rigorously excluded from the natural sciences.]
No wonder America is slipping.
Mainstream America loves to hallucinate, believing pseudo science. Dress up anything as science, and Americans will believe it. Psychology is the best example of this. Most Americans, for example, believe that financial details don't really matter as long as the spending party continues. (In the last four years, the national debt has risen 17 trillion dollars. That is real money.) Americans believe that you can get something for nothing if you just manage to fool enough people.
I was swamped with scams in the mail when I lived in New York--even Reader's Digest which you would expect to have some standards of decency.
But this I repeat does not make Nietzsche wrong. It just means that someone has to figure out a way of dealing with the issue of morality that takes into account the Nietzsche critique. This is a harder job than it may seem. It does not mean simply refuting his arguments. It means we have to reexamine the entire structure of Christan-Jewish ethics and figure out where and if it is wrong or might need correction.
I have a little more time on the Internet today so let me just at this point at least present my own basic approach to morality. Moral values are objective. They really exist, and are independent of observers.
2. Moral knowledge is an example of universals.
But in this case I go with Maimonides and Aristotle that universals are not independent of particulars --but that they exist.
I know many people will think this strange. After all, you do not bump into moral values as you walk down the street. But on the other hand, you don't often bump into the number two as you walk down the street either.
[Also to prove universals exists: (1) Yellow is a color. (2) The truth of statement (1) depends on the fact that yellow exists . Yellow is a universal. Therefore universals exist. QED]]
This brings me to the idea of argument from authority which is a logical fallacy. The trouble with Orthodox Judaism as it relates to this topic is that the major issue which is all consuming is who is the biggest rabbi --yours or mine. Logic and material evidence are not even considered as evidence. and how do you determine this all important question who is the biggest rabbi? By stories.
The trouble with this is that stories are not evidence. They can be helpful inspiration for what you know already by reason, but they can't cancel out reason or logic.
Now the importance of the Talmud for Christians is simple. I should preface my remarks that I am not saying the Talmud is divine. [It never claims such a thing. This is an orthodox invention.] The importance of the Talmud is simply to understand the basic question it deals with: What do the laws of the Old Testament mean? This is the area that the Talmud excels. To go looking for dumb statements in the Talmud, and thereby disparage the whole thing makes no more sense than doing the same thing with Shakespeare, Hegel or Nietzsche which have plenty of more outrageous and self contradictory statements than the Talmud. Shakespeare if you did not know lionized Brutus- -the murderer of Caesar. I forget which play that was in but the last line (I think maybe it was the play about Mark Anthony) was something like: "Here was a real man"--about Brutus! Oy Veehs Mir!
This is relevant for today's news:
Cathy told the Baptist Press that the company, which puts faith ahead of profits by closing on Sundays, was “guilty as charged” for backing the “biblical definition of a family.”
He later ratcheted up the rhetoric in a radio interview, saying: “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage.”
Christians don't need to accept the Talmud. But with a little knowledge of what it is about, all this would not even be an issue.
In fact, you could even just look at the Mishna (the short version written by R Yehuda HaNasi) in Tractate Kritot and see the general rule about what is considered strict and what is considered minor in the Torah. [In short the 36 types of things that one gets the death penalty for are considered strict. You might say.]