Re: Patriarchy: Re: What Matriarchy?
William Edward Woody (woody@alumni.caltech.edu)
Tue, 20 Aug 1996 00:52:07 0700
In article <smryanDw5uC5.M1n@netcom.com>, smryan@netcom.com (@#$%!?!) wrote:
> : Here are my supposedly inconsistent statements:
>
> : 1. Science makes no claim to absolute Truth.
>
> : 2. Scientific methods better "approximate" reality than nonhypothesis
> : testing ways of knowing.
>
> How do you measure better or poorer approximations without reference to
> some absolute truth? You can't pull out a Cauchystyle convergence without
> proving the sequence elements can be into a total order. I don't have
> total orderring of different axiom/belief systems. Do you so claim?
Hey, look ma; them thar scientists are starting to eat their own!
*sigh*
And yet another place where strict scientific methodologies and exacting
logical reasoning should not apply. Too bad our culture encourages this
sort of behaviour.
Let's see if I can blow the dust off of my math and make some sense of
all of this.
There's a finite number of folks on the planet. Ah, hell; there's even
a finite number of folks who have ever lived on the planet, regardless
if we all came from Adam and Eve, or if we came from monkeys.
Now, there is also a finite number of beliefs any individual can hold.
And while that number can be amazingly large (and in my case,
contradictory), it's going to be finite. And probably no larger than
the number of atoms between my ears. (And given my relative intelligence,
probably around 2...)
So, doing the math, a finite number times a finite number is, well, finite.
So the number of belief systems on the planet, while amazingly large,
is finite.
And this whole business of "Cauchystile convergence", "covering", "order",
and the rest of this nonsense doesn't need to applyit's not an infinite
set we're dealing with here.
Just a lot of monkeys beating each other up with electronic clubs.
And, while it pains my little heart to say this, even a partial ordering
is going to yield some beliefs in this large set of beliefs which are
somehow "best" according to that measure.
And a bunch of beliefs for whom the question (which yields our metric)
is just the wrong one to ask...
 Bill

William Edward Woody  email: woody@alumni.cco.caltech.edu
In Phase Consulting  WWW: http://www.alumni.caltech.edu/~woody
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