[lit-ideas] Re: Try a Logic Problem

  • From: Donal McEvoy <donalmcevoyuk@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 4 Jul 2006 18:46:51 +0100 (BST)

Thanks for this, and thanks again. (So good he posted it twice!)

The short point I raised seemed to me fairly intelligible (but not to you):

1. Whether a statement is true or corresponds with facts depends on, and only
depends on, whether the 'statement' corresponds with the 'facts'. Eg. 'Snow
is white' is true if and only if [or 'iff.'] the snow is, in fact, white.

1.1 This is an 'ontic' theory rather than an 'epistemic' theory of truth.

1.1.1 It is an 'ontic' theory of truth because the theory asserts that the
correspondence relation (such as makes a statement _true_) holds if the facts
_exist_ that correspond to the theory (or, if this is not clear enough, it
holds the theory is true if the theory corresponds to the facts _that

1.1.2 It is not an 'epistemic' a theory of truth because it holds that the
statement 'The snow in [location x] is white' _is true_ if the the snow in
[location x] is white. It is true whether or not anyone _knows_ or _believes_
it to be true. It is a theory of truth which is not based on how or whether we _know
(or believe)_ a statement is true. It is a theory of truth which is based solely on the (logical)
relation that must _exist_ between statement and facts if the statements are
to be true (because they correspond to the facts). Tarski's theory denies that a statement, even one we 'know' or
'believe' to be true, can ever be true (despite how much we feel we 'know' or
'believe' it) if it does not correspond to the existence of the facts that
the statement posits as existing.   

More later but more below.

--- wokshevs@xxxxxx wrote:

> With reference to Donal's laments, 

'Laments'? Ok. 'Laments'.

below, I can only say that I cannot
> reply to
> posts that I find so unintelligible that a reply would be worthless for all
> concerned. 

Here we go - "so unintelligible". Let people who trust you dismiss my post
herewith. But would a reply be "worthless"? Not necessarily, because, hey it
might be worth it for me. And anyway what is so "unintelligible" you fail to
explain or make intelligible - perhaps because being unintelligible you
cannot it. But perhaps it is fairly intelligible and you think dismissing it
as "so unintelligible" easier (after all, as Popper pointed out, dismissing a
problem or point etc as "unintelligible" or "senseless" is always possible,
especially if we adopt an overly narrow or self-serving sense of what is
"intelligible" or "makes sense" - ending up in that philosophical equivalent
of the adolescent 'He who doesn't agree with me doesn't understand me' [i.e.
he who doesn't recognise the truth of what I say cannot actually have
properly grasped the sense of what I say].

Given the relative lack of intelligibility in our so-called 'philosopher'
class, it is perhaps amazing that you have the nerve to make such an
allegation and then ramble on with the following:-

>Philosophical analysis is a highly distinct form of discourse;
> not
> everything originating in one's subjectivity counts as a sensible response.
> Philosophical commentary is neither political analysis, nor psychological
> exhibitions of attempted individuation. See Richard Rorty on "private
> individuation," 

I don't know where to start taking this apart as some kind of (pretend?) 
argument. But for your information I might mention, without specifying
See 'Eat My Shorts' by Bart Simpson. 

I have offered a further clarification of a fairly clear point here. But no,
it's all "obfuscatory" to Walter - the kind of term only terminal obfuscators
tend to use btw.

It is clear to me that my contention has nothing obvious to do with your
contention that I was somehow suggesting that we can have knowledge of the
ontic (whatever that is) without this being (in some sense) dependent on the
"epistemic". (Obviously _in some sense_ all knowledge is
'epistemic-dependent' - who's leading us into obfuscatory drivel by
suggesting I suggested otherwise?)

Also: my other main point was:-

If 'The snow is white' is true if the snow is white, so 'My arm hurt today at
four' is true if my arm did then hurt. 

That is, even if the second statement has subject-dependent 'epistemic'
validity it may be absolutely true - because absolute truth is an ontic not
and epistemic relationship. 

Whether your comments are a product of my very bad and unclear writing or
your very bad and "obfuscatory" reading, well - I'll get back on that.



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