Gonz: A Radical Centrist Vision of Truth and ProgressPosted: January 11, 2012 Filed under: Centroids 2 Comments
1b) These objective facts, when taken collectively, contain all of existence
1c) A fact is a piece of incontrovertible truth which exists at a specific point in time, or over a length of time
2) Under no circumstances can humans be perfect (or optimized)
3) As a result, humans can’t have perfect knowledge of facts
Result: No claim by humans of objective truth can be correct. Humans can only have working rules.
1) Humans can’t have perfect knowledge of facts
2a) Humans can improve their situation by applying solutions based on correct understanding of facts
2b) The human situation is the current state of either a single person, a group, or collective humanity
3) As a result, humans can improve their situation, but their application of solutions is imperfect
Result: There is a distinction between “correct knowledge”, which can help humanity improve its situation, and “perfect knowledge”, which is an impossibility involving total understanding.
1) Humans can improve their situation, but their application of solutions is imperfect
2a) Humans can improve their situation through careful study and application of innovation
2b) Innovation is anything created or concocted by humans that exists outside of nature
3) As a result, careful study and application of innovations can improve humanity’s situation, though imperfectly
Result: Broad (ideological, say) rules don’t suffice in improving the human situation.
1) Careful study and application of innovations can improve humanity’s situation, though imperfectly
2) Even though facts don’t change, our understanding of facts can change
3) As a result, our imperfection in applying innovations is a reflection of a lack of understanding
Result: When we change our position, it’s not an admission that we don’t think facts are absolute- it’s that we were wrong.
a) retained eternal objectivity, and removed objective truth from the controlling hands of humans
b) removed human perfectibility from consideration (destroying communism), yet protected things like transhumanism and futurism as incremental enhancement
c) defended the ability of humanity to continue solving problems
d) wholesale destroyed broad “moral imperative” ideologies (socialism, modern progressivism, evangelicalism), in favor of incrementalism
“Result: No claim by humans of objective truth can be correct. Humans can only have working rules.”
False. A claim made may or may not be correct. Problem is proving it one way or another. We know 1 + 1 = 2, for example, because we understand everything involved thoroughly.
“Result: Broad (ideological, say) rules don’t suffice in improving the human situation.”
Suffice is a very subjective term… I’d personally agree with this, but it doesn’t have anything to do with the points listed before it. And as much as I despise ideology in general, as mental crutch / opiate of the masses and whatnot, replacing one with another that is more adapted to the times can in fact improve the human situation. Up to the individual thinking about it as to whether the improvement is suffice though.
“a) retained eternal objectivity, and removed objective truth from the controlling hands of humans”
Circular. If you accept that human perception is fallible, and you are human, then you have to also accept that this idea you have of there being an objective fact that exists. Some physicists disagree even.
“b) removed human perfectibility from consideration (destroying communism), yet protected things like transhumanism and futurism as incremental enhancement”
Perfect is another dangerous term in logic… given how subjective it is. There is an argument to be made that everything is perfect as it is. Every ideology creates a bit of internal circular logic.
“c) defended the ability of humanity to continue solving problems”
This is obvious. Shouldn’t really need to be defendend really, as it’s so evident.
“d) wholesale destroyed broad “moral imperative” ideologies (socialism, modern progressivism, evangelicalism), in favor of incrementalism”
You make a huge jump here that I don’t see any connection with what you said before. The pace at which you change things doesn’t make it necessarily better or worse. Sometimes major and quick changes are needed, when things are acute, sometimes it seems most effective to leave things be, and sometimes it appears to work best to go at some pace in between.
This actually illustrates the problem with ideology. While there are fundamental patterns among the dynamic nature of the world we live in, to think that some grouping of ideas can explain the world around us, with it’s near infinite variables, is absurd. We can’t even predict the weather without a pretty wide berth… and there is far less variability in the weather than in human interaction.
Shakespeare had it right:
“There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”