[lit-ideas] Re: When Water Wasn't Wet

  • From: Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 7 Jul 2009 15:39:29 EDT

In a message dated 7/7/2009 3:31:08 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time,  
pastone@xxxxxxxxx writes:
No... the logic is that 'water' is a bigger set  than 'ice' since it
also exists as liquid and gas.

Similarly -- moms  are women, not all women are moms


I see. So we should teach  K. Trogge about the 'philosophical 
investigation' side to this. I guess you, P.  A. Stone, are with Hilary 
Putnam's moderate 
Kripkeanism that we should  distinguish between

a priori
a  posteriori

I would say that while it is not Logically Necessary that  Water = (for we 
"have" to use "=") here (even if we're talking 'natural kind')  is rigidly 
designated by H20.

But surely we can imagine a possible world  where Water =/= (non-equal) H20.

Thus, the proposition is indeed not  analytic, or tautologic, but synthetic 
a posteriori.

One we get the _semantics_ of 'water' clear can we explore the pragmatic  
contradictions by Palma which are more like a matter of retronymy and  
    'liquid water' would be a retronym, like analog watch,  or acoustic 
    and as such shortened (via 'otiosity minimisation') to  'water'.
Palma writes that 'water is wet' is not tautological. I wonder if he thinks 
 'water is liquid' is _false_ then, or merely uninformative?

J. L. Speranza
Buenos Aires, Argentina 
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