As an Aerospace Engineer, I have a mind-set that looks to see where something is measured from in order for it to make sense to me. I look for datums.
This learned mind-set permeates all aspects of my life and makes me ask seemingly awkward questions so that I can understand whatever it is I’ve just been told, or is proposed to me.

For example, in Britain, we’ve recently been informed that 2012 was the 2nd wettest year on record with more than 52 inches (1,32 meters) of rain falling. (It certainly seemed the wettest!) It was just a few millimetres short of being the wettest.
To understand this claim, the engineer in me wants to know how this was measured, so immediately asks the questions of:
1) Was that evenly distributed across the country, and was there more or less where I live…?
2) Were the two years similar in terms of the distribution of rain through the year, or was one drier than the other over say, the first quarter?

This might seem that I’m simply being awkward (my wife says I am!) but really I am just trying to understand how similar the two years were. I’m just making sure that I understand the ‘units’ of measurement, otherwise, to an engineer, the statement means nothing!
For example, it could be that in one of the years, we caught the tail end of a North Atlantic hurricane that dumped 15 inches of rain in two days. Whereas the other year may have been affected by an increasingly common jet-stream shift.
This could bring the rainfall total to the same numbers, but in reality the hurricane year was 15 inches less, except for the two days of freak weather. Those 15 inches might even make the difference between the driest and wettest years… so the 2nd wettest year ever would be a, not incorrect, but misleading claim.

Ok… so going back to the subject within the title of this post… I think that Man is neither inherently good nor evil. It is a self-defeating question because of the datum to which it must be measured.
The nature of Man is being measured against Man’s inherent nature… how far away from the ocean are you when you’re fully immersed within it…?

The datum for measuring good or evil seems defined by that which is predominant in our nature; it is our default condition, and different aspects of it are enhanced or suppressed by the culture in which we live, and by a common element of the influences that have made each of us the people we are today.
Something that is seen to be ‘good’ today, may not be so in 100 years. The culture will be different, and the datum for measuring good and bad will have shifted.

Interestingly, this proves that neither good nor evil exist. They are simply inventions of the human condition… conspiracy theorists might say that this ‘invention’ was created and then driven by the governments in order to control the population… and if this is true, it still shows that they are inventions of the human condition.

My point in this post is to show how often we fall victim to supposition and how when making a judgement call of some nature, we should try to make sure that we understand what our judgement is being measured against.
We should each look to the datum of things… the core of things in order to better understand judgements / our beliefs originate.