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From: Jesse Mazer <lasermazer.domain.name.hidden>

Date: Mon, 10 Jul 2006 15:44:43 -0400

Brent Meeker:

*>
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*>
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*>Jesse Mazer wrote:
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*> > Brent Meeker wrote:
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*> >
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*> >
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*> >>
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*> >>1Z wrote:
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*> >>
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*> >>>Brent Meeker wrote:
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*> >>>
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*> >>>
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*> >>>
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*> >>>>1Z wrote:
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*> >>>>
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*> >>>>
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*> >>>>>Brent Meeker wrote:
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*> >>>>>
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*> >>>>>
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*> >>>>>
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*> >>>>>
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*> >>>>>>You misunderstand "population models". It's not a question of what
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*> >>
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*> >>members of a species think or
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*> >>
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*> >>>>>>vote for; it's a matter of whether their logic will lead to their
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*> >>
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*> >>survival in the evolutionary
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*> >>
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*> >>>>>>biological sense. So the majority can be wrong.
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*> >>>>>
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*> >>>>>
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*> >>>>>Cooper is making valid comments about *something*, but it isn't
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*>logic.
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*> >>>>>Logic is what tells us the majority can be wrong
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*> >>>>
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*> >>>>Cooper is not talking about logic in the formal sense; he's talking
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*> >>
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*> >>about reasoning, making
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*> >>
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*> >>>>decisions, acting. This can be "wrong" in the sense that there is a
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*> >>
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*> >>better (in terms of survival)
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*> >>
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*> >>>>way of reasoning.
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*> >>>
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*> >>>
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*> >>>If you want to judge what is better in terms of survival,
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*> >>>you need to use logic.
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*> >>
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*> >>No, you just need to see who survives. Experiment trumps theory.
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*> >>
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*> >>Brent Meeker
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*> >
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*> >
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*> > Presumably Cooper used theory to show why certain types of reasoning are
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*> > more likely to aid survival, no? Anyway, we still need assumptions about
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*> > logic and math to make sense of statements about basic experimental
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*> > observations like "the individuals with trait X survived more frequently
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*> > than those who lacked it."
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*> >
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*> > Jesse
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*>
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*>I don't understand "assumptions about logic and math"? We don't need to
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*>make assumptions about them
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*>because they are rules we made up to keep us from reaching
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*>self-contradictions when making long
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*>complex inferences.
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Sure, but those rules still qualify as assumptions. For example, it's

apparently possible to create "paraconsistent logics" where

self-contradictions are not forbidden in all cases, but this does not entail

that every proposition must be judged true--see

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paraconsistent_logic and

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graham_Priest for some more on this. And Cooper

(judging from Lennart Nilsson's summary) seems to be saying that the rules

of classical logic which we use are somewhat arbitrary, that we need "a

relativistic evolutionary logic where classical logic only would be

justified for certain special classes of problems". Presumably in problems

outside these special classes, rules of classical logic could be violated,

which I'm guessing wouldimply violating the principle of non-contradiction

or at least the law of the excluded middle (unless there are forms of logic

which preserve these principles but still differ from classical logic, I'm

not sure).

*>They are rules about propositions and inferences. The propositions may be
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*>about an observation like "a species that used this kind of reasoning
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*>survived more frequently than
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*>those who used that kind." I might need logic to make further inferences,
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*>but I don't need
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*>assumptions about logic to understand it.
*

But if there are other versions of logic besides classical logic, then the

decision to use classical logic is itself an "assumption about logic", just

like the decision to use euclidean geometry in a certain problem would be an

assumption about geometry, since other non-euclidean forms are known to be

possible.

Jesse

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Received on Mon Jul 10 2006 - 15:45:49 PDT

Date: Mon, 10 Jul 2006 15:44:43 -0400

Brent Meeker:

Sure, but those rules still qualify as assumptions. For example, it's

apparently possible to create "paraconsistent logics" where

self-contradictions are not forbidden in all cases, but this does not entail

that every proposition must be judged true--see

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paraconsistent_logic and

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graham_Priest for some more on this. And Cooper

(judging from Lennart Nilsson's summary) seems to be saying that the rules

of classical logic which we use are somewhat arbitrary, that we need "a

relativistic evolutionary logic where classical logic only would be

justified for certain special classes of problems". Presumably in problems

outside these special classes, rules of classical logic could be violated,

which I'm guessing wouldimply violating the principle of non-contradiction

or at least the law of the excluded middle (unless there are forms of logic

which preserve these principles but still differ from classical logic, I'm

not sure).

But if there are other versions of logic besides classical logic, then the

decision to use classical logic is itself an "assumption about logic", just

like the decision to use euclidean geometry in a certain problem would be an

assumption about geometry, since other non-euclidean forms are known to be

possible.

Jesse

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You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups "Everything List" group.

To post to this group, send email to everything-list.domain.name.hidden

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Received on Mon Jul 10 2006 - 15:45:49 PDT

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