[Wittrs] Re: Further Thoughts on Dennett, Searle and the Conundrum of Dualism

  • From: "SWM" <SWMirsky@xxxxxxx>
  • To: wittrsamr@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 29 Mar 2010 02:57:34 -0000

--- In Wittrs@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, Gordon Swobe <wittrsamr@...> wrote:

> >> That concludes his negative argument.
> > Only in that iteration. As we've seen...
> No, not "only in that iteration".
> About 10 years after his original CRA paper, Searle formalized his argument 
> with axioms as above precisely to help people like you understand it. 
> -gts

You know, Gordon, you posted the link to the Hauser site with that text he 
quoted from Searle but did you even read Hauser's commentary or did you merely 
extract the Searle statement because it seemed to support what you are saying? 
After all, Hauser pretty brutally crushed the claims Searle was making in that 
statement you quoted and it would be odd to simply ignore that, especially 
given the thoroughness and professionalism of his commentary. It wasn't just 
some fly-by-night on-line poster writing that stuff, after all, but a guy with 
some credibility in the philosophy business.

Even if you don't agree with Hauser's take on Searle's argument, however, how 
can you disregard it and simply pluck the quoted Searlean text out of the 
context in which Hauser presented it? Aren't you open to other opinions? Or are 
you just really, really set on sticking with Searle and his CRA, come what may?

The CRA is a failed argument and my critique of it isn't the only reason to 
believe that. Searle has had to recast it numerous times, continuously 
narrowing it down until you get the kind of thing Hauser takes him to task for: 
"strong AI" as "strawman AI" based on Searle's weird idea that he is arguing 
against a claim that programs in some abstract sense are minds!

More, Searle's later argument, the one in which he says that programs aren't 
even syntax because the syntax is only in the minds of the computer programmers 
and users and thus syntax actually requires semantics so that one cannot even 
ascribe causality to programs, reveals his own unease with his original CRA 
(from The Mystery of Consciousness).

I suggest that we go back to Hauser's web page, which you provided that link 
for, and consider Hauser's criticisms of Searle's rejoinders to his critics 
rather than simply shutting out other voices. You don't have to consider my 
criticisms of Searle on this stuff. I'm just another poster on-line. But 
perhaps the weight of professional philosophy will reach you?

Want to have a go at that?


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