virus: Everybody's right?

Wed, 02 Jul 1997 18:55:19 -0700

I agree that it's a very good idea to stop spewing one's own memes, take
a step back, cool off, and get some perspective when tensions rise and
people are talking past one another, but "everyone's right?"

If "everyone's right" is intended to convey that everyone has a set of
rights as a participant in the CoV project, then I agree. If
"everyone's" is a contraction of "everyone" and "is," then I don't know
what you mean by "right."

Even if you're of the position that there are no objective facts or that
definitive confirmation of anyone's model of "objective reality" in not
possible, it doesn't follow that every model is equally adaptive,
elegant, internally consistant, or compatible with the working
definitions the group has adopted. If being "right" doesn't have
anything to do with making statements or reaching conclussions which
correlate with "objective facts," and if it isn't a measure of any of
the things I listed above, just what in the heck does it mean to be

When I string propositions together into what I take to be an argument,
am I not either trying to get other people to think that my conclusion
is "right" or hoping to stimulate other people into engaging me with
arguments of their own in a cooporative attempt to reach the "right"
conclusion? If it's just assumed that I'm "right" from the outset, why
bother? It seems to me that reaching the "right" conclussion is our
aim; something towards which we strive; not our default setting.

I genuinely value the "memetic wake-up call" proposal. It's just this
one plank that bothers me. I've been known to listen on occassion, and
I'm certainly willing to do so now. Help me out. -KMO