[Wittrs] The Chinese Room Argument's Presumption, CRAP

  • From: Joseph Polanik <jpolanik@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: wittrsamr@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 24 Mar 2010 07:47:25 -0400

The Chinese Room Argument's Presumption, CRAP

SWM wrote:

>you are pestering me about whether Searle can really be called a
>"Cartesian dualist" because Searle doesn't sub[-]scribe to the full
>panoply of Descartes' doctrines. Well, in speaking of the perspective
>of a Cartesian dualist in that text Dennett doesn't say he does -- and
>neither do I, nor does anyone have to to be in the same place as
>Descartes on his broader philosophy to share a way with him of how to
>think about mind. For more, see above.

>I am going to refuse, from here on, to be sucked into these smoke
>tunnels you like to blow with such faux logic maneuvers. ... it's clear
>enough from what Dennett said that he means a way of thinking about
>mind, not a full court philosophical doctrine. And if it isn't, I have
>made it clear in my responses to you. Now either make some new point or
>we can't move forward in this discussion.


you've been running your mouth about the Chinese Room Argument's
Presumption, CRAP, for several years now; and, you were already well
underway when I came in.

now, it seems you are threatening to shut up if I point out the
discrepancies between your definition and Dennett's definition of
'Cartesian dualism'.

help me out here, Stuart. what's the downside for me?

in any case, I'm attempting to clarify the meaning of 'Cartesian
dualism' because it seems to be one of the key fallacies of your
position. if you choose not to reply, so be it.

* * *

after all this time, all we know is that:

[1] you accuse Searle of implicit Cartesian dualism because of the CRAP.

[2] you claim that the CRAP may itself be implicit or even denied by the
one doing the CRAP.

[3] you claim that the CRAP is not a presumption of interactive
substance dualism; but rather, a presumption of some other (vaguely
defined) proposition that "is consistent with the way Descartes
understood consciousness"; and, which (allegedly) justifies attributing
'Cartesian dualism' to Searle and others making the same CRAP.

[4] you have a simple procedure for detecting the CRAP in those who do
not admit to being implicit Cartesian dualists: If someone thinks that
consciousness cannot be broken down to non-conscious constituents; then,
that thinker is a Cartesian Dualist.

[5] Dennett understands 'Cartesian dualism' to mean 'Interactive
Substance Dualism' --- Descartes' actual philosophy

[6] you claim Dennett agrees with you.

[7] you admit that Searle is not a Cartesian Dualist as Dennett
understands that term; and, you claim that someone does not have to
believe all of Descartes' philosophy to be a Cartesian Dualist; but, you
refuse to clarify whether substance dualism is a necessary prerequisite
for 'Cartesian Dualism' *as you define it*.

[8] clarifying whether substance dualism (whether interactive or not) is
a necessary prerequisite for 'Cartesian Dualism' *as you define it* is
important because you admit that any other form of dualism is a matter
of insignificance.

* * *

well, Stuart, if you want to put the CRAP behind you, you might try
clarifying the definition of 'Cartesian Dualism' and refining your CRAP
detecting protocol. as it stands, it is fallacious.


Nothing Unreal is Self-Aware



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