• Black Hole/White Hole
    Not so.
    Relativity was/is falsifiable, but has since been verified on several occasions.

    Verification is always provisional at best, and all it amounts to in this case is that the mathematics in question isn't clearly falsified by observation.
  • Black Hole/White Hole

    "Spacetime curvature" isn't a real thing, because space/time aren't anything like substances. "Spacetime curvature" is at best a manner of speaking to account for observational data re existents.
  • Black Hole/White Hole
    We "invented" them only in the same sense that we "invent" solutions to equationsSophistiCat

    Solving equations has nothing to do with positing real ontological entities.
  • Natural Law, Rights, and the USA's Social Contract
    It seems weird (as in dubious) that your dad, as you've described him, would say, "Yeah, you should definitely vanity-publish this." If your dad is as described, why wouldn't he think that you should seek a legitimate publisher if he believes your work is worth publishing?
  • What is the purpose of government?
    In my opinion it should be a service organization that makes sure that everyone has all of the basic stuff they need--food, shelter, healthcare, education, transportation, etc., and that protects against physical violence consent violations, property crimes and contractual fraud.
  • Is there any value to honesty?
    do I have more control over how I can make myself feel than on the outside world?Ashwin Poonawala

    With the caveat that I don't believe that it's something plausibly quantifiable, no, I don't believe that you have any more control over how you feel than you do of the outside world. You have some control over both, but there are many ways in which you have very little control.

    Seems like I have total control over how I can make myself feel about myself.Ashwin Poonawala

    If so, try this. When you steal from your brother, when you shortchange your friend, etc. can you make yourself feel ecstatically guilt-free about it? If not, then you clearly do not have total control over how you feel about yourself.
  • Holy shit!
    This might just have been an artifact of my generation trying to make sense of the phrase--I don't know how far the phrase actually goes back--but my memory of "holy shit" as an expression is that it was arrived at by joking about a verbal mannerism of Burt Ward's Robin in the 1960s "Batman" TV series. The writers had Robin regularly say "Holy x, Batman," the variable being filled in by some sort of cheesy or campy pun relative to whatever dilemma they found themselves in.

    Again, maybe the phrase predates that era by a lot, though. I don't know.
  • The Gambler's Fallacy re Miracle
    Although it seems to me that if the probability of getting heads or tails is really 50%, then if we have a bunch of one side in a row, that should increase the odds of getting the other side on a subsequent throw. Why am I thinking this? Well, for the 50% to have any real significance, it needs to be referring to what happens over a series of throws, where the more throws there are, the closer the data set gets to 50% for either side. Otherwise, how in the world would we be arriving at the 50% figure in th first place?
  • What is the most valuable thing in your life?
    I don't believe there's any need to pick a single thing one values most.

    We're not making a top 100 film or album list or something where we need to pick a #1.

    For that matter, I don't believe there's any need to think about films or albums so that we have a single #1 that we prefer to all others either.

    I value all sorts of things. I have no need to put them into a hierarchy where there's a single entry on each level.
  • Black Hole/White Hole
    No. Black holes are a generic prediction of General Relativity. ISophistiCat

    That they're consistent with GR doesn't make them a prediction of GR. We invented them so that they'd be consistent with GR, otherwise we'd need to retool our gravitational theory.
  • 'Panpsychism is crazy, but it’s also most probably true'

    I'm not arguing that making shit up simply to plug something thought of as a theoretical problem isn't common. In fact, I'm saying something rather iconoclastic because it's so common. You seem, on the other hand, to be suggesting that the fact that it's common justifies it. I don't agree with that.

    Re consciousness, I don't agree that there is a "hard problem." The only hard problem is folks' inability to reconcile their not very well grounded, often religious-based views with reality.
  • 'Panpsychism is crazy, but it’s also most probably true'
    Well, 'completelly failing to understand something' is not an argument against it.Wayfarer

    Sure. But what does that have to do with anything anyone has said?
  • Black Hole/White Hole
    They match what we're expecting given our current gravitational models to a high degree of accuracy.SophistiCat

    The structure and apparent motion of stars doesn't match what we're expecting given our gravitational model. Hence the need to invent black holes.
  • Black Hole/White Hole
    Something is there that's being described by the math, given the massive gravitational effects on nearby objects. And it's condensed to a small area for that much gravity. It also doesn't give off light beyond a certain point. There is real data about the objects we model as black holes.Marchesk

    The only thing that's definitely there is numbers from our instruments that don't match what we're expecting given our current gravitational models. So we make up something to explain the unexpected numbers.
  • 'Panpsychism is crazy, but it’s also most probably true'
    hose who say there is a reason to believe it, will argue that materialism can't or won't acknowledge the fundamental issue at stake, which is the explanatory gap.Wayfarer

    That was my second sentence: "Making shit up to solve something that's seen as a theoretical problem isn't a good reason to believe anything. "
  • Is climate change man-made?
    In my opinion we don't know exactly what's causing it, but what we should worry about is how we could counter it if it starts getting too out of control.
  • 'Panpsychism is crazy, but it’s also most probably true'
    The only objection to panpsychism that one needs is that there's no good reason to believe it. There's zero evidence for it. Making shit up to solve something that's seen as a theoretical problem isn't a good reason to believe anything.
  • The status of facts
    Facts: states of affairs. They exist by virtue of there being existents of any sort, as well as those existents' dynamic relations with each other, etc.
  • Why is society important?
    Well, society is kind of unavoidable, especially once you have enough people in a small enough area that they have to interact. But it's also unavoidable in order for humans to even be here. Folks need to interact for the species to continue. Plus if you want food, clothes, etc. that you don't want to have to gather, catch, make etc. yourself.
  • Black Hole/White Hole
    I don't at all believe that black holes aren't simply mathematical constructs at this point.