virus: Nateman vs. Prof Tim

Nathaniel Hall (
Mon, 15 Sep 1997 02:33:56 -0600

Tim Rhodes wrote:

> On Sat, 13 Sep 1997, Nathaniel Hall wrote:
> > Prof. Tim wrote:
> > > Ahhh... not so, grasshopper! See our first axiom: "the universe
> in
> > > non-objective." If a contradiction is *NOT* found, it must
> therefore
> > > have
> > > an explination other than that the universe is objective.
> >
> > Why must it be so? Do you keep the axiom regardless of the evidence
> to
> > the contrary?
> You do if you're an Objectivist! :-)

With what non-sense do propose to counter the evidence of the senses?

> But really... in an axiomatic system the axioms are not open to
> question.
> Thus A=A cannot be held up to scrutiny with the axiomatic system of
> Objectivism. (And the point of my counter-example.) And that is my
> primary disagreement with Objectivism. It overlooks whole realms of
> understanding, sacrificing them at the alter of its axioms. These
> realms
> my seem of little interest to you, but I'm sure the implications of a
> rounded planet were of little interest to the Flat-Earthers as well.

To say the earth is round is to imply that 1) something exists out
there in which to know2) We found some way to learn about it. What
Realm do you find yourself in?

> > An axiom is something which one takes as a given. Something which
> does
> > not need to be proved. However the universe does not care what you
> > choose to think of as an axiom. It has some kind of axiom that one
> must
> > figure out.
> The universe doesn't give #@%$ about axioms, Nateman, it has much
> better
> things to do with its time. Axioms are human creations, nothing more.
> And they retain many of the same failing of all human creations.

So we are in agreement then! The universe must out there (I.E.
Objective) in order for it not to give a #@%$ about us or to do better
things with its time!

> > You have two choices :do contradictions exist or do
> > contradictions not exist.
> There are always more than two choices. You may be denied access to
> some
> of them by your own choice of words, however.

So then Professor enlighten me: what is a third choice?

> > If one assumes contradictions do exist as in
> > the thought experiment one needs go no further. Reason , logic
> argument
> > is all pointless. One doesn't have to make sense. Anything goes.
> This is a VERY IMPORTANT POINT! And you have failed to make it
> convincingly, Nateman!!!

Since we cannot even agree on existence existing that does not surprise

> If one assumes contradictions can exist, why is reason pointless?

2+2=5 that sounds reasonable now doesn't it? After all it's only a

> (Ever heard of fuzzy logic?) Why doesn't one have to make sense? Why
> does anything go?

If I said the moon was made out of green cheese and inhabited by angry
packs of red pokka-dotted lawyers , that may contradict with what you
think the moon really is, but since contradictions are valid and good,
who are you to say any different?

> These are non-sequiters and they employ the same thinking that
> Christians
> use when they say, "If there's no God, one needs go no further.
> Reason,
> logic, hope, it's all pointless! One doesn't need to have ethics. If
> there is no God anything goes!"

What are non-sequiters your talking about? You lost me here.

> Why does the objectivity or non-objectivity of the universe imply
> these
> conclusions any more than the presence (or not) of a "God"?

Again you lost me. what conclusions are you writing about here?

> > However if one takes the axiom that contradictions can't exist you
> have
> > some work ahead of you.
> Indeed, especially since the real world is full of contradictions (at
> least the world I live in, I can't speak for yours).

So in your world ice freezes at 100 C and water boils at absolute zero?(
Only on odd days when the moon lawyers are cutting the cheese. Am I

> > > Where is your proof that this axiomatic system is
> non-contradictory?
> >
> > But it is contradictory. By its very nature.
> Again, that is not a proof. I say "A=A is contradictory by its very
> nature". Does that make it so? Why do you get to pull axioms out of
> your
> ass and I can't mine? ;-)

Because I'm right and your wrong ! :-)

> > > Not that I don't want you to find it, mind you. If you prove that
> > > my anti-thesis is non-contradictory I've won.
> >
> > Then you lose. It's contradictory from the beginning.
> Not *internally*. And that's all an axiomatic system is ever good
> for,
> internal consistency. Nothing more. Whether that internal
> consistency
> jives with the rest of the universe is always (you guessed it)
> subjective.

Jiving with the rest of the universe. Hummmm , does that mean there's
some universe out there in order to jive with?

> > > The first axiom is, "the
> > > universe is non-objective" and if that is non-contradictory then
> why
> > > are
> > > you an Objectivist, hmmm?
> >
> > Where do you get this idea that I claim a non-objective universe is
> > non-contradictory? Did I screw up somewhere and not notice it?
> Axiomatic systems theory again. Sorry if I went into an area you
> weren't
> familiar with. I assumed (wrongly) that most Objectivists are experts
> in
> axioms and the proofs derived from them. That was my experience last
> time
> I argued with an Objectivist (you know who you are!). I'm sorry if I
> jumped ahead on an assumption. I'll go slower...
> Your axiom: "A = A"
> My axiom: "A may or may not = A"
> As you point out above, "an axiom is something one takes as given".
> Why
> should we take *your* given over mine?
> > let me state my axioms to make my view clear:1)The universe is
> Objective
> >
> > 2)Scientists perform experiments which are meaningful.
> I have no doubt that these are your axioms. And I give them *exactly*
> the
> same weight as a Christians axioms: 1) God exists. 2) God works in
> peoples lives.
> Now, just because you have this nifty set of axioms, why should I
> think
> yours are any more valid than the Christians?

Mine you experience first hand. Something you could deduce even if you
were the only person on earth. Aristotle figured it out. Did Aristotle
or his contemporaries figure out christianity?

> > > I knew a fellow that had a dream about a snake eating its own
> tail...
> > > I
> > > wonder what ever became of that fellow?
> >
> > He came up with the Idea of the Benzene ring. Funny you should
> mention
> > that. I thought of that fellow as I was typing that out. He did not
> > perform a valid experiment in his dream though did he? Just came up
> with
> > a decent Idea to explain the results of some experiments.
> Such is the stuff of dreams--coming up with decent ideas to explain
> the
> results of experiments. So of us call that dream Scientific Theories,
> however.

And what do you call nightmares?

> > > And just because you assume A=A does not make it so! (Look out,
> > > Nateman,
> > > the hill starts to get slippery around these parts.)
> >
> > This is so. But it is true regardless. It's axiomatic. Truly
> axiomatic
> > and not just something that I claim to be so.
> Hahahahahahhaahahahha!!!!!

Hahahahahahhaahahahha!!!!! Yourself! (Insert picture of tongue sticking
out here)

> Ahem,... really, Nateman. You don't say?
> > If you think that 2 + 2 =
> > 5 in your heart of hearts I'm at a loss as how to show you the error
> of
> > your ways but I know you'd be wrong!
> Same's true of A=A. But I love you regardless of your faults. :-)
> > Define what you mean by Non-Objective and I'll tell you. My
> definition
> > of Non-Objective is that Contradictions can exist. Perhaps this is
> where
> > the confusion between us is coming from.
> I'm not sure I understand, why does objective mean "without
> contradiction"? Please explain.

If something has a definite existence (objectivity) then how can it be
anything else than what it is?If it was something and something else at
the same time doesn't that seem contradictory to you?

> And Nateman, read the following and imagine I said it to *you* about
> the
> Objectivist's axioms I was trying to deny:
> > This is a clever trick. By taking your foundation as an undeniable
> idea
> > (axiom) I'm supposed to show the idea (axiom) is deniable. Of course
> I
> > can't show it given those conditions. But the axiom is wrong in the
> > first place and I don't need to work within it! If you cannot
> believe
> > that seeing is believing nothing I say is going to convince you
> > anyway.By making me work within your axiom you make me accept the
> very
> > idea I do not accept. I'm on to you now. You can only trick me for
> so
> > long!
> See the rub?
> How long are you going to let yourself be tricked?
> Prof. Tim

You'd have to cut out the part about seeing is believing. Maybe
something like seeing is disbelieving perhaps. There are just some
things in which your experience alone can convince you. If you really
believe that A does not equal A I'll admit I'm powerless to convince
you otherwise. Only the knife edge experience of reality cutting into
your false premises is going to convince you otherwise. But since you
don't believe in real things why don't you send me all your worldly
possessions since they are just figments of your imagination . I'm sure
I can put them to REAL use.

The Nateman