• R. M. Hare
    The thing that I like about Horgan and Timmons is that they salvage a lot of of what I think Hare has of value to offer, but also retain cognitivism and grant moral statements truth-values. Their initial work was in establishing that cognitivism doesn't have to entail descriptivism, so you can have propositions that do things other than say that the world is such-and-such way -- notably, they can instead say only that the world ought to be such-and-such-way -- and nevertheless be truth apt in the sense needed for objectivity and rationality (though not in a narrower sense of "truth" that bakes in descriptivity).
  • R. M. Hare
    May I recommend Hare’s successors, Horgan and Timmons, the only other people to ever get metaethics correct, in their nondescriptivist cognitivism. (It’s basically the same as the metaethics I independently invented before I discovered them; and prior to discovering them I thought Hare was the closest to correct out there yet).
  • Any academic philosophers visit this forum?
    Pfhorrest is an academic philosopher. He writes interesting articles in his main page: The Codex Quaerentis.javi2541997
    I dunno that I'd really call myself "an academic philosopher", as that sounds like I have a PhD and publish papers in journals and stuff. I just have a BA in the subject. But I appreciate that someone here remembers me fondly!

    I remember that a few years ago he posted some consistent and philosophical threads but I think he is off from TPF or he is just taking a break.
    I found a philosophy chat server on Discord that I enjoyed more than here, where I was quickly thrust up the ranks of staff and now basically run the place. It's probably against the rules to link to it here...

    (We do have quite a number of actual academic philosophers of higher educational attainment than myself, PhDs and Masters and so on, and many graduate students working toward those goals).
  • Forrester's Paradox / The Paradox of Gentle Murder
    Wow people are still responding all these years later?

    I think in the original paradox the idea is that you can inflict varying degrees of pain in the process of wrongly killing someone -- you could painlessly kill someone with an overdose or morphine, say, as in euthanasia, or you could, I dunno, slowly burn off one bit of their body at a time with periods for recovery in between to prolong the agony. And the initial premise of the problematic syllogism that's meant to be generally accepted is that the latter is worse than the former, so between those two options you ought to choose the former as it's less bad, i.e. better. You shouldn't murder, but if for some reason you're going to end up murdering anyway, it's better if you make it painless ("gentle") than painful ("brutal"?).

    If you murder, you ought to murder gently.
    You cannot murder gently
    Therefore, you ought not murder
    This is actually an interesting exploration of the logic of the original paradox and of my proposed solution.

    Setting aside the problems with the argument that it's not possible to murder gently, let's just accept for the sake of argument that that is true. Let's also accept that "ought implies can", that you tacitly rely on here to get from "you cannot murder gently" to the tacit "you oughtn't murder gently". The way the original paradoxical interpretation would have it, the logical thing to conclude would then be that you don't murder. Not "oughtn't", but "don't".

    From premises that
    M -> ought(M ^ G) = "if you murder, you ought to murder gently"
    for all x, ought(x) -> can(x) = "you ought to do something only if you can"
    ~can(M ^ G) = "you cannot murder gently"
    it follows from a string of modi tollentes that ~M = "you do not murder"

    But now take my alternate interpretation, or encoding, plus the other premises conceded above.

    From premises that
    ought(M -> (M ^ G)) = "if you murder, you ought to murder gently"
    for all x, ought(x) -> can(x) = "you ought to do something only if you can"
    ~can(M ^ G) = "you cannot murder gently"
    it follows from a string of modi tollentes that ought(~M) = "you ought to not murder"

    Which I hope we'll all agree is a much more intuitive kind of conclusion to take away.
  • WTF is Max Tegmark talking about?
    Btw ↪Pfhorrest
    's reading seems correct based on a summary given by Tegmark in his exchange with Scott Aaronson in the comments here:

    "Physicalist: I think there’s no “secret life sauce” distinguishing living from non-living things.
    Critic: That’s an unscientific theory, since you can’t experimentally prove there’s no secret life sauce!

    Integrated information theorist: I think there’s no “secret consciousness sauce” distinguishing conscious information processing systems from unconscious “zombie” ones.
    Critic: That’s an unscientific theory, since you can’t experimentally prove there’s no secret consciousness sauce!

    MUH advocate: I think there’s no “secret existence sauce” distinguishing physically existing mathematical structures from other mathematical structures.
    Critic: That’s an unscientific theory, since you can’t experimentally prove there’s no secret existence sauce!

    I think that in all three cases, the first person makes a simple Occam-style claim, and the the onus should be on critic to experimentally detect the sauce!"

    Thank you for that link, it was a fun read, and nice to know that I understand Tegmark's position correctly. :-)
  • My profile pic?
    I like your logo! It looks amazing!CraigAten

    Thank you very much! Though I'm not sure how this ancient thread came to your attention. :)

    what does mine say about me?Sir2u

    I don't know.

    Sorry, I meant: "I don't know."

    I.e. it says that you don't know; that you question.

  • The (?) Roman (?) Empire (?)
    I'm increasingly disinclined to continue this conversation as it's clear that you lack dialectical charity (which is the main reason I no longer visit these forums at all, for the most part). But I'll give at least one more succinct response.

    Do you think there are such things as unjust laws? Morally bad, wrong laws, that morally should not be enforced, and that nobody is morally obligated to obey -- despite, nevertheless, actually being the law, in full compliance with all legal requirements for laws?

    If you say yes to that, you are agreeing with me. That the state commands something -- that something is obligatory according to the law -- does not make it morally obligatory. It's not necessarily wrong to disobey it. (There might be things that the state commands, and that are obligatory, but they're not obligatory just because the state commands them).

    If you say no to that, then you're a reprehensible monster and I'm not going to continue this conversation.

    When I said no state is morally legitimate, I meant that nobody has a moral power to command just any old thing, and nobody has a moral duty to obey everything someone commands. The state's edicts carry no moral weight. The state might command things that are also morally obligatory, and in that case people have a moral duty to do those things, but they would have a duty to do them even if the state hadn't commanded them -- the state's commands make no moral difference. It is morally permissible to disobey the state, so long as there not some other moral obligation that aligns with what the state commands. You're morally free to ignore whether or not something is commanded by the state in deciding what to do. That is the sense in which the state is morally illegitimate.

    I am not saying that having power makes the state morally illegitimate in that sense. Such moral illegitimacy is the default state of affairs. If a powerless nobody went about commanding everyone to do as they said, that would be morally illegitimate too: nobody would be obliged to obey them. But if that powerless nobody suddenly gained power enough to make everybody do as they said... they would still be morally illegitimate. They would be a state, as in, they would have a monopoly on the use of force, but that wouldn't give them any more moral legitimacy.
  • The (?) Roman (?) Empire (?)
    not in accordance with lawJames Riley

    That just means an agent of the state did something contrary to what the state said they could. It's the laws themselves that can be arbitrary.

    moral authority under the laws, as set forth in our organic documentsJames Riley

    Documents which can say anything, or be interpreted to mean anything, that the people with all the power say they do.

    allows you to find some other place in the world more to your likingJames Riley

    See Hume's "carried aboard a ship asleep".

    Power does not = moral illegitimacyJames Riley

    I never said it did. I said power != moral legitimacy. Just because they can force you to comply with their commands does not make their commands morally binding.
  • The (?) Roman (?) Empire (?)
    The power of the state is such that it need not spell it out for each individual, so long as it has been spelled out for everyone.James Riley

    And it does not have to be spelled out for everyone, only for itself. If part of the state (e.g. the legislature) says that such-and-such is mandatory or prohibited and the rest of the state (e.g. the judiciary) goes along with it, then no further explanation to anyone is taken to be necessary. There is no one else to appeal to, and if there de facto were (some powerful entity that could curtail the state), then the state would cry that that other entity was de jure illegitimate, because the state's authority is beyond question (according to the state).
  • The (?) Roman (?) Empire (?)
    Where is this arbitrary claim of authority (in the U.S.)?James Riley

    Each state constitution and the US constitution has a clause granting their legislature the power to create and enforce laws in general; often with some limitations, and sometimes nominally only within certain limited domains, but in practice that's always completely ignored, e.g. the US Congress doesn't have to cite which of the enumerated powers granted to them they are passing a law in the name of and show that that law accomplishes that purpose, unless they're challenged by the Supreme Court in which case they can usually just comically hyper-extend one of the enumerated powers like the Commerce Clause. In practice, if a state (either the constituent states or the federal state, in the case of the US) agrees with itself that something is a law, then you're forced to comply regardless of any argument to the contrary, which is tantamount to "because we said so".

    is not the use of (or threat of) coercion the primary means by which States prove their legitimacy?Bitter Crank

    Successfully exercising a monopoly on the use of force is what proves that they are actually a state, and not just claiming to be one. But being actually a state doesn't make them morally legitimate.

    E.g. the Republic of China clearly is not the state in control of China generally, since their effective power is limited to the island of Taiwan. But even if they did in fact exercise a monopoly on the use of force over China as a whole, while that would make them the actual Chinese state, it would not make them morally legitimate.
  • The (?) Roman (?) Empire (?)
    But, regarding the state, if it prevents Bob from attacking innocent Charlie under threat of force, is that immoral? Why would that be arbitrary?James Riley

    It's not immoral, precisely because it's not arbitrary. It's the arbitrariness of the claimed authority of the state that makes it morally illegitimate. To legitimately oblige or prohibit something requires sound reasons to back that up; obligation or prohibition without sound reasons is thereby arbitrary and thus illegitimate.

    why is that morally illegitimate instead of simply amoral authorityJames Riley

    Moral illegitimacy is a species of amorality; it's the lack of moral justification. That doesn't make it immoral, though in general, for independent reasons, anything you might do to force someone to do something is usually immoral, unless you have legitimate moral justification to command them to do so. Basically, if there is a sound moral reason that would rightly prohibit them from doing something, you have justification to stop them from doing it. But you don't have -- and nobody has -- justification to just make anybody do or not do anything for no reason at all, just because they say so. But states by definition claim the power to do so, and since they're not morally justified in that claim, they are morally illegitimate.
  • The (?) Roman (?) Empire (?)
    In the sense that we're talking about with states, if Alice is walking down the street and sees Bob attacking innocent Charlie, and commands or even forces Bob to stop that, that's morally legitimate. Alice doesn't have arbitrary authority to command or force anyone to do just anything, though; that would be morally illegitimate. And that's the kind of authority states categorically claim.
  • WTF is Max Tegmark talking about?
    This looks like hyper-Platonism to many but more like Spinozism to me.180 Proof

    I like that comparison.

    I'm adamantly anti-Platonist but I think Tegmark is on the mark, because rather than talking about there being some other kind of abstract objects existing apart from the concrete physical world, or else denying that abstract objects exist at all, he completely dissolves that distinction and says that everything is an abstract object, the concrete physical world is just he one we're a part of, and consequently (at least implicitly) any other abstract object would also be concrete to any observers who might happen to be a part of it.

    That is very much like how neutral monism a la Spinoza dissolves the Cartesian distinction between physical and mental kinds of stuff, and so rather than saying either that there's this non-physical mental stuff, or else denying that anything is mental at all, it says that that everything is both mental and physical (and on an account like my own -- not to put words in Spinoza's mouth -- that distinction is just a matter of perspective, not so unlike "concreteness" in Tegmark; or for that matter, "actuality" in David Lewis).
  • Greatest Power: The State, The Church, or The Corporation?
    A related question for discussion: religions are epistemic authorities and states are deontic authorities, but what are corporations? If by corporations what we really mean are capitalists, the wealthy who own all the things, then they seem to be another kind of deontic authority, inasmuch as they are the owners of things who therefore have say over who is permitted to use those things.

    If so, what then is the analogue of that in the realm of epistemic authority, standing next to religion the way capital stands next to the state?

    The media, perhaps? Should they be a fourth option in the OP’s question?
  • "I've got an idea..." ("citizen philosophy")
    This, at first, seemed to me an unsolvable problem but then I realized it's only so in terms of 1 person, individualistic in flavor but all one has to do is to kindle the team spirit in ourselves and a solution presents itself - the amateur and the professional complement each other, together the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. :lol:TheMadFool

    :100: :up: :clap:

    And what if someone's idea is that good that he is afraid of being stolen?dimosthenis9

    Then he’s free to keep it to himself, or publish it in an attributable way on his own.
  • Kavka's Toxin Puzzle, and the future of reality!
    There cannot be perfect prediction in principle because of dynamical chaos: the act of making a prediction of a system that includes the predictor changes the system in a way that the predictor cannot predict faster than the events actually unfold.

    Say your system consists of a room with a prediction computer and a simple robot that reads the computer’s prediction of what it will do and then does the opposite. The prediction computer knows this about the robot and so predicts that the robot will do the opposite of the opposite of the opposite of the opposite of … ad infinitum, resulting in a calculation that cannot be completed before the time it’s trying to predict has already passed.
  • "I've got an idea..." ("citizen philosophy")
    I think if perhaps such a system were build from the bottom up, with large numbers of kinda-knowledgeable people responding to the even larger numbers of complete novices, and smaller numbers of moderately more knowledgeable people responding to most of whatever goes unanswered by those lower tiers, then perhaps it could begin to attract the attention of even more educated people who would only have to respond to the little that actually makes it through all of those lower-to-middling tiers.Pfhorrest

    I had a thought today about the technological implementation of this, although I'm not sure how exactly it would work with this forum software (@jamalrob care to comment?). The thought was that:

    - there could be different classes of volunteer respondents who want to get pinged with different levels of these "hey is this a new idea" posts.

    - only members of a given education level can be of a higher-level tier, though highly-educated users can also voluntarily be of a lower tier: so Tier1 can be anyone, Tier2 must be at least AAs, Tier3 must be at least BAs, Tier4 must be at least MAs, and Tier5 must be PhDs.

    - and only members of the next-lowest tier are able to ping users of a given higher tier, so volunteers at higher tier levels get pinged less often about the low-hanging fruit: so anyone can ping Tier1, but only Tier1 can ping Tier2, only Tier2 can ping Tier3, only Tier3 can ping Tier4, and only Tier4 can ping Tier5.

    So if a PhD were willing to volunteer just a little bit of time to checking out things that none of the volunteers with at least MAs recognize as existing ideas, they could sign up to the Tier5 role. What they stand to get out of that time volunteering is a chance to be exposed to things that are possibly genuinely novel thoughts, that they might then be happy to co-author papers about. But they wouldn't have to wade through every single instance of someone reinventing a 2000 year old wheel to find those, because lower tiers of respondents would be filtering those out. And likewise for the lower and lower tiers too, so e.g. someone with a BA can be available to ping if nobody less educated has ever heard of an idea, without having to be right on the front lines getting pinged by everyone all the time.
  • "I've got an idea..." ("citizen philosophy")
    Yeah, I don't really know how to go about making something like this happen, which is why I'm floating the idea to places like this. I'm more than willing and able to contribute to the extent that I can to the process, to recognize ideas I'm already familiar with and find quick links to online resources where those kinds of things are explicated further, when I have the time. I couldn't commit to being the one person to always do that for everybody further down the educational hierarchy, though. And I've only got so much knowledge of my own to share, so for people comparable to myself looking to run ideas past people even more knowledgeable, I can't help.

    I think if perhaps such a system were build from the bottom up, with large numbers of kinda-knowledgeable people responding to the even larger numbers of complete novices, and smaller numbers of moderately more knowledgeable people responding to most of whatever goes unanswered by those lower tiers, then perhaps it could begin to attract the attention of even more educated people who would only have to respond to the little that actually makes it through all of those lower-to-middling tiers.
  • Objective Morality: Testing for the existence of objective morality.
    every case seems to be about an observerCheshire

    Claims about reality involve observers every bit as much as claims about morality do: that's what empiricism is all about, there's nothing more to reality than the way it appears to people, and it can appear differently to different kinds of people in different contexts, and the true reality is whatever consistently ties all those different appearances together.

    The lesson to take away is that subjective-as-in-phenomenal doesn't have to be subjective-as-in-relative, and conversely, something doesn't have to be objective-as-in-transcendent just to be objective-as-in-universal.
  • "I've got an idea..." ("citizen philosophy")
    I have been exposed to new ideas that were already out there, but that I had been unfamiliar with, and for me that is the main value of these forums.Janus

    That is half of the aim of this idea, too: for people to learn more about the ideas that have already been had.

    The rest of the chapter explains why.T Clark

    Care to summarize that for us? And, again, why isn't everyone already on board with that idea? (As in, what reasons would they give for rejecting it?)
  • "I've got an idea..." ("citizen philosophy")
    Just because it's not a new idea doesn't mean people will agree with it.T Clark

    Yes but presumably those who disagree with it will give some explanation as to why.

    You cite Ecclesiastes. Surely someone has commented somewhere in the past few thousand years on why they think that passage is wrong? And, for that matter, surely someone has offered an explanation of why they think it's right? Ecclesiastes just states that it is, without argument.
  • "I've got an idea..." ("citizen philosophy")
    It's a nice idea but it requires quite a lot of discipline from all concerned. :)bert1

    Yeah, or else heavier moderation for those kinds of threads to keep responses in format.

    It's a good idea. It might rather change the tone for the better of the equivalent of those discussions already taking place, perhaps making thread starters less defensive and thread contributors less aggressive?Kenosha Kid

    Thanks! And I sure hope so. That’s basically what I wanted when I first came looking for philosophy discourse online, and have been mostly disappointed about so far.

    So, is my idea that there are no new ideas a new idea? Definitely not.T Clark

    Surely then you could cite a previous example of that idea being put forth in professional philosophy somewhere, and some responses it received to explain why not everyone is on board with it already?

    And even if that were true, it would just mean that all of the threads of this type would have the first of the two possible outcomes (novices learn of the professional discourse that has already been had), and that’s still a good thing.
  • (Close to) No one truly believes in Utilitarian ethics
    More or less, yes. There are variations on utilitarianism that are less demanding, and proponents of those probably often comply with them on that front. But there are other even more absurd consequences of utilitarianism (and consequentialism more generally) that many adherents would not want to own, but don't cause them to reject the theory, because all the alternatives they can think of seem even worse.
  • (Close to) No one truly believes in Utilitarian ethics
    The demandingness objection is one of the common critiques of utilitarianism.
  • What’s The Difference In Cult and Religion

    Conversely, a cult is just an unpopular, shunned religion.
  • The end of universal collapse?
    There's a part of your post in which you briefly stopped speaking of entanglement and spoke of observation. That's the part I referred to in my previous reply to you.Kenosha Kid

    Does not every observation, as an interaction, cause entanglement? (Leaving room still for partial observation; see below).

    What we see instead is evidence of observer-dependent collapse: Wigner knows that collapse has occurred for the friend, but for Wigner the friend is still in superposition as evidenced by interference effects between the alive and dead terms (collapse has not occurred for Wigner).Kenosha Kid

    Is this while Wigner and his friend are already entangled? Because this sounds like the same relationship the friend has to the cat before opening the box: he knows there is a cat for whom the particle’s wavefunction has collapsed inside the box, but to him the cat is still in superposition of having experienced different kinds of particle collapse.

    I’m getting the sense that this new evidence is of the possibility of SOME information from inside the box being communicated to the friend without it being enough of the right information to collapse the wavefunction; likewise the friend can communicate some info to Wigner without collapsing the wavefunction from Wigner’s perspective. Is that accurate? If so, would it also be accurate to say that the particle is not entangled with the friend or Wigner in those respective cases? Basically, Wigner can observe anything about his friend that can’t imply anything about the collapse of the particle’s wavefunction, and keep those aspects of the system (friend, cat, particle, etc) superposed from his perspective so long as he does so?

    If that is what’s going on here, that’s as expected by my interpretation, which I’ve (perhaps erroneously) been calling MW.
  • The end of universal collapse?
    So now I'm confused if the interpretation that I've supported under the name "Many Worlds" all these years actually was Many Worlds or not. That interpretation that I've called thus has been:

    The initial state of the universe before anything interacts with anything else has all wavefunctions unentangled with each other and so in superposition from each other's perspectives.

    When a radioactive atom interacts with a detector, they become entangled with each other, and enter a superposition together from an outside perspective, while "collapsing" each other's superposition from each other's perspective.

    When the detector triggers the release of toxic gas, that becomes entangled with the atom-detector system too, joining their superposed state as seen from outside, "collapsing" each other's wavefunctions from their inside perspective.

    When the cat interacts with the gas, it does likewise; now there's a live state of the cat entangled with the undecayed atom (and the rest of the apparatus in between), a dead state entangled with the decayed atom (etc), and those entangled states are still superposed with each other from an outside perspective.

    When Wigner's friend observes the cat, he becomes entangled with it all, and states of him having observed various outcomes are superposed upon each other from an outside perspective.

    When Wigner observes his friend, or the cat, or at all interacts with that entangled system such in a way where the state of the system will affect the state of Wigner after the interaction, he becomes entangled with it, and different subsequent states of him are superposed upon each other from an outside perspective.

    And so on, more and more of the universe becoming entangled as parts of it interact with each other, which from the perspective of anything outside of that web of interactions (anywhere the information of some quantum measurement has not reached yet) looks like all of that being in one big superposition together; so, from a hypothetical "outside the whole universe" perspective, the whole universe is in a superposition of every possible state it could be in given all the interactions that have happened in it, with each classical state in that universal superposition being a "world", of which there are thus many.

    If that's not Many Worlds, what is that?
  • The end of universal collapse?
    you might measure whether the cat is alive or dead, even tell me you have made such a measurement, but you'd remain in a superposition of having measured both live and dead cat to me until I made my own measurement (of the cat or your results).Kenosha Kid

    Many worlds is outKenosha Kid

    Is not the above exactly what Many Worlds says happens?

    No, wait... Many Worlds says the first person remains in superposition until (so far as the second person can tell) the second person observes the first person, not the same thing the first person observed. Is that not what you meant? Surely, if Alice reports to Bob that she observed that the cat is alive, Bob is not seeing Alice as in a superposition of having both observed the cat alive and observed the cat dead; Alice is observably in one of those states. (Even if the actual fact of the matter, as I understand MW to say, is that Bob has merely decohered upon his observation of Alice, and Bob is now in a superposition of having observed Alice having observed the cat alive, and having observed Alice having observed the cat dead, etc).
  • Entropy, expanding space, Noether's theorem, and conservation of free energy
    The law of the excluded middle is still applicable. Everything is still either true or false. But that's a separate issue from epistemic possibility or necessity.

  • Entropy, expanding space, Noether's theorem, and conservation of free energy
    You're applying the wrong standard of justification. "This definitely doesn't happen unless you can prove that it definitely does" would require a retreat to abject nihilism because nothing can be conclusively proven. The correct standard is "this might possibly happen unless you can prove that it can't possibly". So I'm asking you to prove that it can't possibly, or else admit that it might. Just saying "prove that it definitely can" doesn't prove that it can't possibly.
  • Entropy, expanding space, Noether's theorem, and conservation of free energy
    If you want branches, then reality ought to happen more than one way. But it does not, does it?god must be atheist

    Doesn't it? Why would you think it didn't?

    Anyway, the point of my explanation was to undermine your claim that probability is entirely a human construct. If there's only one possibility, the probability of that possibility being realized is 100%. If there are many possibilities, the probability of any particular one of them being realized is low. That's what alethic probability (rather than epistemic probability like you're talking about) is, definitionally: what percent of the various ways things could be are like so? That's the probability of things being like so.
  • Entropy, expanding space, Noether's theorem, and conservation of free energy
    For illustration imagine a toy model like the black and white bitmap image discussed earlier. Given that there’s only one white pixel in it and any others are black: it is not at all surprising that that one white pixel would be in the top left corner of a 1x1 image, because that’s the only place it could be, so there’s a 100% chance of it being there; but it only has a 25% chance of being there in a 2x2 image; an 11% chance of being there in a 3x3 image; a 6% chance of being there in a 4x4 image; etc. The bigger the image size, the less likely the one white pixel will be in any particular location, since there are more other locations it could be in. Likewise, any expanding system opens up more possible ways its contents could be arranged, and so makes the way there were already arranged before a less likely possibility, and therefore makes change more probable.
  • Inconsistent Mathematics
    My only, somewhat tangential, thought to contribute here is that in my own proposed extension to logic, you incidentally get something kind of like a paraconsistent logic "for free", yet without technically violating the principle of bivalence.

    In that proposed extension, we abstract out the propositional force of the usual indicative propositions logic normally deals with, so instead of propositions like "x is F" we have gerund incomplete sentences like "x being F", to which we can then re-apply that propositional force a la "this state of affairs is the case: x being F". All of our usual logic still applies with just those gerunds even before we re-apply the propositional force, e.g. all F being G, and x being F, entails x being G; we don't have to actually propose that any of those states of affairs are the case to discuss the logical relationships between them.

    My initial motive for abstracting out that propositional force was so that we could then apply different kinds of propositional force to the same gerunds without impacting their logical relations to each other: specifically, instead of proposing that some state of affairs is the case, we could rather propose that it be the case: a prescriptive or imperative proposition rather than a descriptive or indicative one.

    But a side-effect of that, that makes it relevant to this thread, is that with the usual indicative propositions reconstructed as an indicative function wrapped around a gerund state of affairs, you can do things very much like paraconsistent logics, without actually violating the principle of bivalence.

    In other words, if instead of saying "x is F" or "x is not-F", we say "there-is(x being F)" and "there-is(x being not-F)", we open up the possibility to say both of those things at the same time without any strictly formal contradiction. We would require a special rule that says "there-is(x being not-F)" entails "not(there-is(x being F)" if we wanted to enforce the usual kind of substantive consistency, and we don't have to introduce such a rule if we want to allow for paraconsistency. Just applying classical logic to this kind of construction automatically gives you something about tantamount to paraconsistency.
  • Entropy, expanding space, Noether's theorem, and conservation of free energy
    Nope. Dark energy is whatever is causing space to expand. It's a product of space itself, so once there's more space there's more energy... which makes more space, with more energy, etc. That's the creation of new energy and so a violation of time symmetry.
  • Entropy, expanding space, Noether's theorem, and conservation of free energy
    I just came across the term "phantom energy" which seems to be what you are talking about.Gnomon

    Nope, just dark energy. Phantom energy is something on top of that, that may or may not exist. Dark energy definitely does.
  • Memetic Inbreeding
    This reminds me of something that I like to say about philosophy in particular, that is analogously applicable to inquiry and discourse more broadly: that it is good that there be people whose job it is to know philosophy better than laypeople, and that some of those people specialize even more deeply in particular subfields of philosophy. But it is important that laypeople continue to philosophize as well, and that the discourse of philosophy as a whole be continuous between those laypeople and the professionals, without a sharp divide into mutually exclusive castes of professional philosophers and non-philosophers. And it is also important that some philosophers keep abreast of the progress in all of those specialties and continue to integrate their findings together into more generalized philosophical systems.

    That mix of isolation and integration is the same.
  • The Postmodern era: Did it happen?
    spacetime is doomedTom Storm

    that’s quitter talk
  • The Postmodern era: Did it happen?
    Modernism vs postmodernism is a false dichotomy to begin with. The problems that postmodernists rail against are not inventions of modernism per se but remaining vestiges of a time before it, and the way that postmodernists attack the things that modernism did create to improve upon those prior conditions in turn just re-enables those anti-moderns.

    Saying that nothing is objectively true, like a relativist, but then, rather than skeptically rejecting all claims, instead taking that to make all claims immune to skepticism, like a dogmatist, because they couldn't be objectively wrong either, just makes for a relativism that gives free reign to all forms of dogmatism, and a dogmatism that cloaks itself in relativistic armor.

    Modernism aims for both objectivism and skepticism, but in order to succeed at that and not collapse into postmodernism it has to reject both the extremes of transcendent objectivism and the extremes of cynical (justificationist) skepticism, instead admitting only a phenomenal objectivism and merely criticism skepticism; only skeptical inasmuch as that means not dogmatic, and only objective inasmuch as that means not relativist.
  • Entropy, expanding space, Noether's theorem, and conservation of free energy
    An additional thought that just occurred to me: in a string-theoretic model that requires higher dimensions that are presumed to be just very small and undetectable, perhaps the reason why only three of them got large is because there is as yet insufficient entropic advantage to enlarging them compared to other things that could be happening, and perhaps in some circumstances it could become advantageous and therefore more likely to happen.Pfhorrest

    Addendum: imagine we begin the toy model earlier as a 1 pixel long 1 dimensional 1 bit depth image. That’s basically just a single bit, a 1 or 0, an empty set or a set containing the empty set. We’re allowed to make any changes to this that we like. We can change the one pixel from black to white. We can make the 1 dimensional image more pixels long. We can add dimensions to the image. We can increase the bit depth of the pixels. As the 1 dimensional 1 bit image is equivalent to an integer in binary, we can make whatever change that would make it into a rational or real instead. As multi-bit pixels are also basically integers, we can make them rationals or reals instead. Multi-channel (e.g. RGBA) pixels are basically matrices, so those can be matrices of reals if we want, and the whole image can then be a multidimensional (differentiable) manifold in which every point is a matrix of real or, hell why not, complex numbers. Or we can have an 11-dimensional image where every point is an octonion if we want instead. The important part is that we can get to that structure by gradually modifying our original structure that was basically a single bit.

    And in principle, we could make a configuration space of all possible abstract structures. Including every possible configuration of whatever kind of structure turns out to be the perfect model of our universe. And then reckon time as a path of continuously increasing entropy through that configuration space.

    In this way, all the very laws of the universe are merely local symmetries in that configuration space, things that the current chain of least actions don’t have reason to violate. But when violating them is the best route toward higher entropy, it’ll do that. And so a universe that began as literally just an empty set, a zero, one black pixel, evolved more dimensions, larger dimensions, and more and more complex structure, because that became the best way of increasing entropy. Our universe is currently… something like the cross product of several special unity groups… and doesn’t need to change from that in order to increase its entropy, because there are a lot of much more entropic structures of that sort it can cycle through before it has to resort to an altogether different kind of structure. But when it has to, it will. And it got to be this way in the first place because at various times in the past, it had to.
  • Dog problem
    Why then cannot dogs own themselves?

    You’re right that if ancap principles were to apply and dogs were owned by humans then those humans could fuck their dogs all they wanted without interference.

    If the dogs have rights against that though, then either that implies a limit on the ancap principles or it implies limits on the human ownership of dogs.