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Victor Pross

THE DUEL BETWEEN PLATO AND ARISTOTLE

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Johnny:

>The statement is "in science, we never have sufficient reason for the belief that we have attained the truth" Just answer the question, is that a true statement or not?

There is plenty of evidence to suggest this statement is true. There is extremely sound logic to show that it's true. Hence I believe it is true.

However, just because there is good evidence and sound logic for this statement - not to mention my strong belief in it - does not guarantee that it is true. It may turn out to be false. Thus I cannot, and do not, claim it is irrefutably true. This is a perfectly logically consistent position, and is not a "fallacy" at all. This naiive Objectivist argument against skepticism is itself a fallacy, and an old one at that.

As the wikipedia puts it:

"A philosophical skeptic does not claim that truth is impossible (which would be a truth claim)."

So now you know. In terms of getting to grips with essays like Popper's which may challenge your particular beliefs, I strongly recommend you 1) at least finish reading them before attempting to critique them, so you have at least some idea of the overall argument, and 2) do at least 5 minutes research outside of the writings of Ayn Rand and Leonard Peikoff before declaring that such-and-such are "logical fallacies." :)

Edited by Daniel Barnes

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Johnny,

Regardless of what wikipedia states, there is in philosophy a skepticism that denies knowledge outright, which is universal skepticism.

Universal skepticism is approached in two ways: In its ‘positive’ form it consists of the dogma that human beings can know nothing. This stance can be rejected because anybody who accepts it finds himself deep in ludicrousness and contradictions—which have been pointed out by thinkers outside of Objectivism over and over.

The basic crux of the objection to universal skepticism is thus: When the skeptic claims that there is no knowledge, the skeptic is asserting a knowledge claim. According to his own theory this is impossible. This is the classic retort, and it’s valid.

The second form of universal skepticism consists of the doctrine that we must doubt every claim of knowledge. By this ‘negative’ approach, the universal skeptic wants to avoid the contradiction of asserting a knowledge claim while denying the existence of knowledge.

And so the doctrine that we should doubt every knowledge claim boils down to positive assertion that we can never obtain certainty. This has been pointed out time and again, yet skeptics pretend that the argument is not really there---as if by ignoring it, it won't be brought up.

I wonder if “universal doubt” is itself certain, or is it susceptible to doubt as well. :turned:

-Victor

edit: There are dozens of arguements debunking skepticism outside of Objectivism, Johnny. I could suggest a few. Still, David Kelley's 'evidence of the senses' is a good Objectivist work that I would suggest.

For those who are interested: History of skepticism--here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophical...y_of_skepticism

Edited by Victor Pross

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Thus I cannot, and do not, claim it is irrefutably true.

Daniel,

I hope this doesn't spark a long discussion over semantics, but you have hit the essence of the term "contextually absolute" on the head with that phrase.

"Absolute" in this sense means knowledge gained that is not able to be refuted. "Contextually" means according to the accumulated knowledge at that instant (or in those circumstances).

Call the phrase "contextually absolute" an oxymoron if you want, but the meaning is clear and it is something like the following: Knowledge gained that is not refutable according to the accumulation of knowledge at hand.

This does not mean that it cannot be refuted with new knowledge. It only means that (1) it does correspond to reality—meaning it is not arbitrary and it works for what it was gained to do, and (2) it cannot be refuted at the time (or in the circumstances) under consideration.

I don't know of any place in Rand's works where this understanding is not clearly an essential component of the Objectivist meaning of knowledge. I have read extensively in Objectivist literature that reality is absolute and knowledge is contextual.

Can we agree on this meaning if not on the choice of words to express it?

Now a word about how language changes. I have been particularly sensitive to this issue as a translator. A word or phrase is only as good as the meaning it expresses. If a culture or group of persons decide that "meaning X" is the meaning of a term, that is what the term will mean. Eventually, over time, the dictionary will acquire a new definition.

A very good example of something way beyond an oxymoron is the term "liberal," which in today's political language means exactly the opposite of what it used be in terms of rights. I could wage a war today against left-leaning people and tell them constantly that their use of the term liberal is wrong, etc., but in the end, I would be the one who was wrong (and wasting my time, to boot) for concentrating on the word, and not on the meaning behind it (i.e., on the concept).

I may not like the new meaning for liberal, and I may not like how the meaning became transformed by events and usage, but I cannot deny that the new meaning exists and it is now widely used for liberal.

I find this same observation applies to focusing on the phrase "contextually absolute." If the meaning were not so clear everywhere in the Objectivist literature, I would agree with you that it is an issue. With the meaning so blatant, it is an insignificant complaint.

Michael

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Johnny:

>The statement is "in science, we never have sufficient reason for the belief that we have attained the truth" Just answer the question, is that a true statement or not?

There is plenty of evidence to suggest this statement is true. There is extremely sound logic to show that it's true. Hence I believe it is true.

Hm. That's not what I expected you to say. I expected you to say that the statement is true but isn't itself a scientific statement. There are MANY true statements -- including statements about science -- which aren't scientific statements. A trivial example of a statment which is true but isn't a scientific statement: "Johnny" is the username used by the person who asked you the question. This is not a scientific statement.

Ellen

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Michael:

>I hope this doesn't spark a long discussion over semantics, but you have hit the essence of the term "contextually absolute" on the head with that phrase....I have read extensively in Objectivist literature that reality is absolute and knowledge is contextual.

I agree. Recall my demonstration of where this leads:

1) Reality and our knowledge of it are two different things. We can summarise the difference as:

2) Reality is absolute (and not contextual)

3) Our knowledge of it, therefore, is contextual and not absolute.

From this, we deduce that our knowledge is not absolute. Hence, we can see that we can rephrase "contextual absolute" as better English by merely saying knowledge is contextual, and leaving off any "absolutes" entirely, as a redundancy, the purpose of which seems purely rhetorical. Now, we all know what "contextual" means. In fact....

>If the meaning were not so clear everywhere in the Objectivist literature, I would agree with you that it is an issue. With the meaning so blatant, it is an insignificant complaint.

My criticism is not over whether the meaning is clear or not - it has always been perfectly clear to me, and critics such as Greg Nyquist (though it seems its meaning is often not well understood by Rand's adherents...;-)). My criticism is, as I have said frequently, that "contextual certainty", "contextual absolute" etc are, in practice, the same as common or garden skeptical uncertainty"! The difference, in practice is purely verbal and cosmetic.

Once again, I will break it down to demonstrate:

"Contextual certainty" simply means: We may know P to the best of our ability in the current context, but for whatever reason, P may turn out to be false.

Now, there is no important difference between this "contextual certainty" and a straight-up skeptical theory of knowledge

eg: We may know P, but P may be false.

Thus, Rand's theory of "contextual" knowledge in practice entirely clashes with her rhetoric. Hence, as I have always maintained, her theory of knowledge is best described as highly confused.

Edited by Daniel Barnes

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Repeating my own post two above, since Daniel and I posted at close enough to the same time, I fear he missed this comment entirely and might not notice it when next he signs on.

Johnny:

>The statement is "in science, we never have sufficient reason for the belief that we have attained the truth" Just answer the question, is that a true statement or not?

There is plenty of evidence to suggest this statement is true. There is extremely sound logic to show that it's true. Hence I believe it is true.

Hm. That's not what I expected you to say. I expected you to say that the statement is true but isn't itself a scientific statement. There are MANY true statements -- including statements about science -- which aren't scientific statements. A trivial example of a statment which is true but isn't a scientific statement: "Johnny" is the username used by the person who asked you the question. This is not a scientific statement.

Ellen

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Ellen:

>Hm. That's not what I expected you to say. I expected you to say that the statement is true but isn't itself a scientific statement.

But I thought he asked me whether it was true or not, not whether it was scientific or not.

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Ellen:

>Hm. That's not what I expected you to say. I expected you to say that the statement is true but isn't itself a scientific statement.

But I thought he asked me whether it was true or not, not whether it was scientific or not.

Yes, he asked whether the statement is true or not. Here was the statement:

Johnny:

"n science, we never have sufficient reason for the belief that we have attained the truth"

His question was: "s that a true statement or not?"

I'd say, yes, it is a true statement. We never do have -- and never will have -- sufficient reason, in science, for the belief that we have attained the truth, by the nature of science. If the subject matter is one in which we could possibly have sufficient reason, the subject matter isn't "in science."

Ellen

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Victor, Victor, Victor. Are you at it again?? Here's a post by 'immortalist' from over at sci.logic that it seems Victor has, ahem, "borrowed" from in his now-infamous fashion:

http://groups.google.ms/group/sci.logic/br...51203c7f6?hl=en

Victor:Universal skepticism is approached in two ways:

"immortalist" post: Universal skepticism is usually stated in one of two ways.

Victor: In its ‘positive’ form it consists of the dogma that human beings can know nothing.

immortalist: In its positive form it consists of the doctrine that man can know nothing.

Victor: This stance can be rejected because anybody who accepts it finds himself deep in ludicrousness and contradictions

immortalist: This belief can be easily dismissed, because anyone who defends it finds himself immersed in hopeless absurdities

Victor: When the skeptic claims that there is no knowledge, the skeptic is asserting a knowledge claim. According to his own theory this is impossible.

immortalist: In asserting that there is no knowledge, the skeptic is asserting a knowledge claim-which according to his own theory is impossible.

Victor:The second form of universal skepticism consists of the doctrine that we must doubt every claim of knowledge.

immortalist:The second form of universal skepticism consists of the doctrine that we must doubt every alleged instance of knowledge.

Victor:By this ‘negative’ approach, the universal skeptic wants to avoid the contradiction of asserting a knowledge claim while denying the existence of knowledge.

immortalist: Through this negative formulation, the universal skeptic seeks to avoid the contradiction of asserting a knowledge claim while denying the existence of knowledge.

Victor:And so the doctrine that we should doubt every knowledge claim boils down to positive assertion that we can never obtain certainty.

Immortalist: But the doctrine that we should doubt every knowledge claim translates_into the positive assertion that man can never attain certainty..

:lol::lol::lol::lol::lol: Cold busted yet again! What an unstoppable eejit.

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I already suspected as much, the style betrays him. Apparently he thinks that just changing a word here or there will be enough to escape detection.

It is interesting to note that this kind of behavior is condoned by the Objectivists on the list (with the honorable exception of Barbara) and criticized by the non-Objectivists. It seems that Objectivists with all their talk about moral integrity are the real moral relativists. Oh sure, robbing a bank is wrong, but who cares about pinching a watch if it's done by a nice chap?

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Daniel,

Grow up. I don’t know of this site. The arguments against skepticism are classic. They are what have been pointed out a billion times—like all the classic arguments against the existence of God. You are truly acting like a child. I am bringing to Johnny’s attention the fact of universal skepticism and the weakness they are subject to. No one thinker "owns" the case to be made against the nonsense of universal skepticism, and it is a common objection. As I said: This has been pointed out time and again, yet skeptics pretend that the argument is not really there---as if by ignoring it, it won't be brought up.

Edited by Victor Pross

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It is interesting to note that this kind of behavior is condoned by the Objectivists on the list (with the honorable exception of Barbara) and criticized by the non-Objectivists.

Dragonfly,

No, it is not condoned and never has been. If you have to chose between bad and worse, that does not mean you condone the bad.

There was a value judgment going on before concerning a project you were not participating in. I have since put the project on ice and am letting the chips fall where they may. Let's say I lost.

I am going to let matters run for a while and I hope you and anybody else who desires (and is able to) busts Victor for plagiary every time he does it. This is not forever, but it will accumulate a small number of instances that will stay online forever before I take restrictive measures.

If Victor chooses to wreck his reputation for once and for all, he now has the opportunity. I am not going to stop him by running interference. What goes up stays up. And if it continues to be plagiary, it will stop going up.

I suggest using the "quote" feature (very simple instructions here). That way even if the original post is changed later, it will not be changed in the quoted section.

I am using this feature below on the material and the bust to keep it on record. And for the record, the very same post can be found on the Internet (from the same person—Immortalist, usually in response to a guy named Dale Kelly)

here at the talk.origins group,

here at the alt.philosophy group,

here at the sci.med.psychobiology group, and

here at the sci.med.psychobiology group in Russia.

There might be other sites, but these are what I found. In every instance, Immortalist was credited and/or link provided.

Michael

Johnny,

Regardless of what wikipedia states, there is in philosophy a skepticism that denies knowledge outright, which is universal skepticism.

Universal skepticism is approached in two ways: In its ‘positive’ form it consists of the dogma that human beings can know nothing. This stance can be rejected because anybody who accepts it finds himself deep in ludicrousness and contradictions—which have been pointed out by thinkers outside of Objectivism over and over.

The basic crux of the objection to universal skepticism is thus: When the skeptic claims that there is no knowledge, the skeptic is asserting a knowledge claim. According to his own theory this is impossible. This is the classic retort, and it’s valid.

The second form of universal skepticism consists of the doctrine that we must doubt every claim of knowledge. By this ‘negative’ approach, the universal skeptic wants to avoid the contradiction of asserting a knowledge claim while denying the existence of knowledge.

And so the doctrine that we should doubt every knowledge claim boils down to positive assertion that we can never obtain certainty. This has been pointed out time and again, yet skeptics pretend that the argument is not really there---as if by ignoring it, it won't be brought up.

I wonder if “universal doubt” is itself certain, or is it susceptible to doubt as well. :turned:

-Victor

edit: There are dozens of arguements debunking skepticism outside of Objectivism, Johnny. I could suggest a few. Still, David Kelley's 'evidence of the senses' is a good Objectivist work that I would suggest.

For those who are interested: History of skepticism--here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophical...y_of_skepticism

Victor, Victor, Victor. Are you at it again?? Here's a post by 'immortalist' from over at sci.logic that it seems Victor has, ahem, "borrowed" from in his now-infamous fashion:

http://groups.google.ms/group/sci.logic/br...51203c7f6?hl=en

Victor:Universal skepticism is approached in two ways:

"immortalist" post: Universal skepticism is usually stated in one of two ways.

Victor: In its ‘positive’ form it consists of the dogma that human beings can know nothing.

immortalist: In its positive form it consists of the doctrine that man can know nothing.

Victor: This stance can be rejected because anybody who accepts it finds himself deep in ludicrousness and contradictions

immortalist: This belief can be easily dismissed, because anyone who defends it finds himself immersed in hopeless absurdities

Victor: When the skeptic claims that there is no knowledge, the skeptic is asserting a knowledge claim. According to his own theory this is impossible.

immortalist: In asserting that there is no knowledge, the skeptic is asserting a knowledge claim-which according to his own theory is impossible.

Victor:The second form of universal skepticism consists of the doctrine that we must doubt every claim of knowledge.

immortalist:The second form of universal skepticism consists of the doctrine that we must doubt every alleged instance of knowledge.

Victor:By this ‘negative’ approach, the universal skeptic wants to avoid the contradiction of asserting a knowledge claim while denying the existence of knowledge.

immortalist: Through this negative formulation, the universal skeptic seeks to avoid the contradiction of asserting a knowledge claim while denying the existence of knowledge.

Victor:And so the doctrine that we should doubt every knowledge claim boils down to positive assertion that we can never obtain certainty.

Immortalist: But the doctrine that we should doubt every knowledge claim translates_into the positive assertion that man can never attain certainty..

:lol::lol::lol::lol::lol: Cold busted yet again! What an unstoppable eejit.

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My criticism is not over whether the meaning is clear or not - it has always been perfectly clear to me, and critics such as Greg Nyquist (though it seems its meaning is often not well understood by Rand's adherents...;-)). My criticism is, as I have said frequently, that "contextual certainty", "contextual absolute" etc are, in practice, the same as common or garden skeptical uncertainty"! The difference, in practice is purely verbal and cosmetic.

Once again, I will break it down to demonstrate:

"Contextual certainty" simply means: We may know P to the best of our ability in the current context, but for whatever reason, P may turn out to be false.

Now, there is no important difference between this "contextual certainty" and a straight-up skeptical theory of knowledge

eg: We may know P, but P may be false.

Thus, Rand's theory of "contextual" knowledge in practice entirely clashes with her rhetoric. Hence, as I have always maintained, her theory of knowledge is best described as highly confused.

Daniel,

There is a nuance you are not taking into account that makes this difference much more than cosmetic. I hinted at it when I wrote:

Call the phrase "contextually absolute" an oxymoron if you want, but the meaning is clear and it is something like the following: Knowledge gained that is not refutable according to the accumulation of knowledge at hand.

This does not mean that it cannot be refuted with new knowledge. It only means that (1) it does correspond to reality—meaning it is not arbitrary and it works for what it was gained to do, and (2) it cannot be refuted at the time (or in the circumstances) under consideration.

There are several strains of philosophy that use skeptics' meaning you gave to assert that the knowledge we have at the present is useless. And this includes the famous arguments against induction (like just because the sun always came up before, that is not proof that it will rise again tomorrow).

(btw - Is the meaning you gave really some kind of official skeptics thing? I ask because I don't know.)

Rand was arguing that the knowledge we have works. Just because it might be overturned tomorrow by new knowledge does not mean that it suddenly stops working under the present context. It will always work the same way under conditions identical to the original ones. To that extent, it was connected to reality and it correctly reflected reality.

Let's use a metaphor. Old ships with sails used to sail the seven seas the world over and they could still sail them today. Just because we have modern ships that work much better, that does not suddenly make the old ships unusable. The same goes with ideas. The devices built that worked based on Newtonion physics did not stop working because of Einstein's new knowledge.

Yet the implication in academic philosophy has often let to the contrary conclusion. Here's another metaphor. While the academics (and maybe skeptics) viewed prior knowledge as a half-empty glass, Rand viewed it as a half-full one. She was very strongly set against the ones who saw the half-empty glass, then pretended it was a completely empty glass. I agree with her.

But I also agree that Rand's rhetoric sometimes implies that everyone but Objectivists (and those approved like Aristotle) were her avowed enemies on this point and her emotionally charged warlike pronouncements could lead to confusion. But the core idea is very sound. Not confusing at all.

Michael

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Michael:

>Let's use a metaphor. Old ships with sails used to sail the seven seas the world over and they could still sail them today. Just because we have modern ships that work much better, that does not suddenly make the old ships unusable. The same goes with ideas. The devices built that worked based on Newtonion physics did not stop working because of Einstein's new knowledge.

Yes, but this is commonly called instrumentalism, and is on a similar tip to pragmatism. This is not an original contribution of Rand's by any means. In fact she denounced pragmatists, same as she denounced everyone else. :)

>Yet the implication in academic philosophy has often let to the contrary conclusion. Here's another metaphor. While the academics (and maybe skeptics) viewed prior knowledge as a half-empty glass, Rand viewed it as a half-full one. She was very strongly set against the ones who saw the half-empty glass, then pretended it was a completely empty glass. I agree with her.

The metaphor is a useful one. Rand simply called the half-full glass "absolutely full"!

Edited by Daniel Barnes

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I might add that both "immortalist"'s arguments rest on the same point: that the skeptic is making a positive claim i.e. claiming that the statement is true.

But the skeptic is not. The skeptic is making a hypothetical claim: a claim that itself can be criticised, and might be true or false. (I may think this hypothesis to be true on the basis of logic and evidence to date, but obviously that does not make it so!)

Clearly "immoralist" does not know the difference between a positive claim and a hypothetical one!

Thus there is no contradiction in the skeptical position. It is logically consistent. Rand's argument is itself a fallacy, and an old one at that.

We can explain this time and time again to Victor, but he seems to struggle with simple logic as much as he struggles to write an original post!

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Yes, but this is commonly called instrumentalism, and is on a similar tip to pragmatism. This is not an original contribution of Rand's by any means. In fact she denounced pragmatists, same as she denounced everyone else. :)

Daniel,

I just skimmed over the articles and there are several fundamental differences between Rand's approach and what I saw (albeit briefly). Rand's epistemology is based on concepts as the identification of entities. Concepts are sort of unchanging file holders. You feed information into them but very rarely do you change the folder itself once it is formed. You can also create new ones. Concepts are even treated as entities (mental entities) in their own right in forming new concepts. The unchanging nature of the file holder is one major difference between Objectivism and what I saw.

Another concerns fundamental axioms. I don't think this point needs much discussion. Shall I scratch the itch? Shall I? Shall I? (A is A. So there. :) )

These two are off the top of my head and there are probably others, but I don't have time right now to think about it. I don't think you will be able to get Objectivism=Instrumentalism or Objectivism=Pragmatism to stick.

The metaphor is a useful one. Rand simply called the half-full glass "absolutely full"!

Er... "contextually absolutely full," since she was only looking at the bottom half in reporting on the liquid.

:)

Actually, this is a useful metaphor. We can call the glass a concept made out of unchanging material and the liquid information that shows how full it is. The liquid can be added or removed or even replaced with other liquid, but the glass remains the same. A concept is a mental unit like that in a certain sense.

Michael

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Michael:

> "contextually absolutely full," since she was only looking at the bottom half in reporting on the liquid.

In the ordinary parlance, this remains a glass half full (or half empty)

I agree that Rand is describing the same situation, and the difference is merely verbal.

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I agree that Rand is describing the same situation, and the difference is merely verbal.

Daniel,

Hallelujah!

God exists!

:huh:

Oops...

I don't mean... er... you know...

That phrase is just a Brazilian expression that means "I have witnessed a miracle."

:)

Michael

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>>>>>>But the skeptic is not. The skeptic is making a hypothetical claim: a claim that itself can be criticised, and might be true or false. (I may think this hypothesis to be true on the basis of logic and evidence to date, but obviously that does not make it so!)

THIS is an orginal counter-argument?? :laugh: (It's a lame argument, either way).

Dan, let's write a script:

Theist: "God exists. You see, everything has a cause. The universe exists, and therefore it has a cause. Thus, God exists. God created--caused--the universe"

Atheist: "Well, everything must have a cause, then...." [finish the argument, and make sure it does not exist elsewhere].

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Victor:

>THIS is an orginal counter-argument??

No I said it was an old argument. You don't seem to know the difference between:

1) Making an argument that has been made many times before

2) Repeatedly cut-and-pasting large quantities of other people's work and passing it off as your own, not just on this site, but on others too. Busting you over and over on this has been a source of endless amusement to various members of the list, including myself, as you simply do not seem to be able to help yourself. This latest is especially good, due to your inept attempts to disguise this theft, which it seems you are even too lazy to bother with after the first few sentences. We've particularly enjoyed some of your introductions to these plagiarisms, such as the time you told us "I have been doing a great deal of reading of Popper’s philosophy...." before introducing a critique that, it turned out, you had cut and pasted verbatim, entirely without attribution, from Nicholas Dykes...;-). In fact, you have never opened a page of Popper. You don't know what you are talking about. But this doesn't seem to embarrass you, or cause you to change your behaviour any more than your repeated humiliations over plagiarism, so I can't see how you're going to improve through further discussion.

>It's a lame argument, either way).

But that's only because, in addition to only pretending to have read the thinkers you criticise, you don't seem to be able to understand a simple logical argument either!

Hence we can always tell when you aren't cut-and-pasting, because what you write lacks any semblance of relevance or coherence. For example, the nothing-to-do-with-anything drivel below:

>Dan, let's write a script: Theist: "God exists. You see, everything has a cause. The universe exists, and therefore it has a cause. Thus, God exists. God created--caused--the universe" Atheist: "Well, everything must have a cause, then...." [finish the argument, and make sure it does not exist elsewhere].

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Victor:>THIS is an orginal counter-argument??

Dan the man: No I said it was an old argument. You don't seem to know the difference between...Bla, bla, bla...

Danny boy! Oh, I see. It's an OLD argument. NOT yours? :laugh: Hmm, I see. The argument against universal skepticism is, as I have said, "classic" and has been argued by many people. Why not? The argument is sound. And by the way, you know very little of the history of skepticism---that much is clear. They are making a positive claim, not a 'hypothtical' claim. Give me break, and argue against what it is actually about, son of Hume. :turned:

Danny boy: But that's only because, in addition to only pretending to have read the thinkers you criticise, you don't seem to be able to understand a simple logical argument either!

Um, yeah. :laugh:

Victor

Edited by Victor Pross

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Victor:

>The argument against universal skepticism is, as I have said, is "classic" and has argued by many people. Why not? The argument is sound.

It is a "classic" alright - a classic fallacy! Once again: This argument only works if you think hypothetical claims are equivalent to truth claims, which of course they are not.

Shall I explain the difference so even you can understand it?

Hypothetical claims may be true, or may be false.

Truth claims, obviously, can only be true.

Thus...amazingly....hypotheses are not truth claims, so...let's follow the bouncing ball r-e-a-l s-l-o-w here... thus there is no contradiction.

Are you really going to argue hypotheses are the same as truth claims, Victor? That's what it takes for your argument to work.

Of course, I do not doubt you will not accept this, but this is because you are seemingly impervious to logic. I predict all you will be able to do is just repeat that your argument is "classic" or "sound" without any further elaboration, as if by repeating it will make it so! Or if you do "elaborate" it will be with your own blessedly senseless arguments, like your aetheist/theist example above, which had nothing do do with anything. Or perhaps you will get light-fingered yet again.

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