Thursday, April 03, 2008

I'm getting fried on the Internet Infidels Discussion Board again

Same old stuff. It's an appeal to ignorance, Carrier refuted me back in 2004, apologists are are dishonest because, after all, they're apologists you know. It's late and I'm tired.

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5 Comments:

At 4/04/2008 05:47:00 AM , Blogger mattghg said...

Don't forget the "armchair science" complaint.

I wonder, what do the naturalists on here make of Carrier's rebuttal?

 
At 4/04/2008 06:29:00 AM , Blogger Doctor Logic said...

I read the rebuttal, or at least skimmed it with attention to the juiciest bits.

Overall, I think Carrier's rebuttal is a very good one. I would pick a few bones... my naturalism and his are not identical, and I think the Pyrrhonic Skepticism thing is unnecessary, but I suppose it's okay for completeness).

 
At 4/04/2008 07:21:00 AM , Blogger Doctor Logic said...

I think there's a much simpler way to state (and rebut) some variants of the argument, and it goes like this.

We think there are ways we ought to think rationally. A mechanistic model of how we think will demonstrate an "is" and not an "ought". Therefore, the mechanistic model cannot prove that we ought to think the way we think we ought to.

I think this is the argument that intuitively resonates with the AfR's supporters.

The problem is that it is impossible to rationally justify the rational oughts (whether one is a naturalist or a supernaturalist). We just have to presuppose them to even discuss the issue.

Moreover, reductionism isn't attempting to show that material minds prove the "ought" of rational thinking. Reductionism shows that material minds think in accordance with those oughts.

 
At 4/04/2008 08:33:00 AM , Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

I think we have to learn the oughts, and learn to think according to their constraints. Reductionist psychology or whatever will likely find that our actual cognition looks nothing like a good logic, but a messy, error-prone kludge that works enough to get by. It isn't until we groom our practices of reasoning (with the help of public symbol systems) that we pull ourselves out of the filth of our more "natural" reaoning processes.

I'm not sure about this, but it seems reasonable given how crappy humans are at being logical (in the symbolic logic sense of logical).

 
At 4/04/2008 09:15:00 AM , Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

DL says:
Therefore, the mechanistic model cannot prove that we ought to think the way we think we ought to.

This is nice. It could also be applied to ethics more generally I think. ('The mechanistic model cannot prove that we ought to behave the way we think we ought to').

Note I'm not sure I agree with it, but it is a very nice turn of phrase. Patent it. :)

 

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