John F. Sowa schrieb:
> I agree with that point:
> > Certainly we should argue for whatever answer we think is the
> > best one but my only caution is to avoid wrapping our answer
> > (it is never someone else's) in the mantle of being an "objective"
> > answer. That cuts off any debate and automatically disenfranchises
> > any contrary viewpoint.
> C. S. Peirce had one fundamental rule about doing research in any field:
> Do not block the way of inquiry.
> Anybody has the right to propose a bright new idea, but nobody else
> is required to pay attention to it. That is normal.
> The greatest sin against science, however, is to block promising
> ideas that one does not like or approve of.
I agree with John S, apart from his agreement with Patrick H. After a
whole life in university milieus, my experience is that if someone says
he has the true answer (or "objective" answer), this does not cut off
debate - it starts debate! But if someone says "Oh, this is just my
subjective point of view," no debate starts. And for good reasons. What
is there then to discuss? (02)
As Peirce was one of the first to make explicitly clear, one has to
distinguish between people who say "this is the truth, and I know it
with incontestible and absolute certainty" and people who say "I am
firmly convinced that this is the truth, even though I know that all
truth-claims are in principle fallible." Peirce argued for the latter
position, and thought that in the very long run the scientific community
should, so to speak, reach consensus *about correspondence* (between
theory and reality). The correspondence theory of truth can be combined
with fallibilist epistemological realism. Fallibilism does not in and of
itself imply subjectivism, relativism, or social constructivism. (03)
Ingvar J (04)
IFOMIS, Saarland University
home site: http://ifomis.org/
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