There are arguments against free will and moral responsibility which rely on strict causal determinism and/or determinism modified by quantum randomness. Criticisms of these views raise doubt as to our ability to adequately measure the incredibly complex deterministic processes in question, and point out that our limited understanding of mental processes - more specifically our relative ignorance regarding the mental phenomena - prevents us from a clear understanding of the extent to which what we call volition is actually truly voluntary.
Strawson pessimistic view takes a different tack, one which seems logically robust. Strawson's argument is rather long to quote here, but Benjamin Studebaker paraphrases him as follows (as far as I can tell, reasonably accurately) in this article:
When we make conscious decisions to act a certain way, we make these decisions on the basis of reasons, and we find these reasons persuasive because of the way we are (our values, beliefs, desires, principles, physical capacities, etc.).
So if one is to make decisions in a self-determined way, one must also self-determine the way one is.
But to self-determine the way one is, one must have made conscious decisions to be a certain way, and made those decisions on the basis of reasons, and found those reasons persuasive because of the way one is.
So for self-determination to be possible, one would need to be able to self-determine the process by which one self-determines, which would require that one self-determine the process by which one self-determines the process by which one self-determines. This produces an infinite regress.
Therefore self-determination is logically impossible.
Therefore, insofar as free will requires self-determination, free will is impossible.
As far as free will goes, it doesn’t matter whether we are the way we are because of natural laws, heredity, environment, randomness, or some combination of these things, what matters is that we cannot be the way we are because we self-determined it, and because we make our decisions based on the way we are, we cannot make our decisions on the basis of self-determination.
I admit to a a bias here; a bias that I wish to interrogate by opening this issue up for discussion. It is Strawson's pessimism (almost commonsense?) I find most persuasive; so persuasive that I wonder at why it is not more widely understood and taught (outside of the strictly philosophical realm, in more general areas of academia study) given its relevance to one of the most fundamental aspects of our experience and the ramifications it presents for the ways in which we view ourselves and treat others. Challenges to the pessimistic view are outlined here, but I find myself agreeing that these challenges are inadequate.
Experience to date suggests that this stack often furnishes views which are not apparently addressed by the usual first-glance sources I resort to; views which argue from resources I haven't considered or which rely and valid/(sound?) logical presentations. It is any such views I am interested in, for I remain surprised that Strawson's view is not met with a more widespread acceptance and I wonder at what I might be missing.
Note: I acknowledge that logic and reason often aren't the key drivers for our arrival at beliefs, and that the free will debate in particular presents significant challenges for minds conditioned to believing the intuition we typically possess of being in command of our own decisions; of having what we colloquially understand as 'free will'. I am not asking here for reasons as to why we don't more readily accept we don't have free will, but for any challenges to Strawson's view not already contained within the resources I've provided.