virus: Logic and Purpose

Reed Konsler (
Tue, 21 Oct 1997 15:15:58 -0400 (EDT)

>Date: Mon, 20 Oct 1997 12:43:22 -0600
>From: David McFadzean <>
>At 06:19 PM 10/18/97 -0400, Reed Konsler wrote:
>>>false premises lead to false conclusions.
>>In this case you don't need to worry. The premises of science
>>and materialist logic (broadly defined) are non-falsifiable.
>Is that true?

In my opinion. What experiment could you do to disprove your
own perception/consciousness? Everything you know is filtered
through "I" (as in Descartes: "I think therefore I am"). Thus,
if you are a materialis,t there will always be a percieved "material".
The fact that what you "know" about it changes can be explained
away by taking refuge in a Platonic argument about the "real world"
and our "perception-reflections" of it. In the end a materialist can
do exactly the kind of "mind-flipping" Tad takes issue with Richard
for. We have a theory today...but it's just a theory. Tomorrow we
may "learn" something different.

Now, let's set aside the subjectivist/objectivist debate for a moment
since I don't care to argue for one or the other side. I think that
issue is ambigious. My point is that the materialist always has the
refuge of claiming false perception of real phenomena or inperfect
approximation of complex interactions as an explaination for
experiment not agreeing with theory. Trust me, we (along with
all humans) do it all the time.

It is therefore my opinion that the basis of an objectivist/materialist
worldview is non-falsifiable. That doesn't mean it's wrong, just
that you will never convince a scientist THROUGH EXPERIMENT
that the universe is a subjective one, or that it doesn't exist at all.

WITHIN the objectivist/materialist worldview a hypothesis or theory
can be falsified, but the basic presumtions of the paradigm are axiomatic,
as with any paradigm. Thus, it will always APPEAR to be true that
there is an objective universe.

Is the APPEARANCE of the objective universe the same as saying
it is real? That conflation is the premise of science, and of Objectivism.
I'm am, again, not saying that it is inaccurate. I am simply asserting
that there is no experiment which would refute it, and that it is
thus non-falsifiable.

>>>The evolution of complex knowledge structures.
>>Who cares?
>The people building them.

Who cares? I'm not playing games. Perhaps I should rephrase the

To what end? For what purpose? Why?

>>>>>>What is the purpose of the Church of Virus?
>>>Eric's answer "To fight Faith, and evangelize Rationality and Memetics."
>>>is partially right. That seemed to be the purpose when I was first
>>>infected (and I am the First Host). Maybe it just wants to survive
>>>and it will adopt whatever secondary purposes it needs to in order
>>>to grow.
>>Your second answer tastes like ash.
>It was merely speculation, hinting at the fact that the purpose of
>the CoV is what we make of it within the structure. Why do you say
>it tastes like ash? Does Tim's suggestion of a meta-religion also
>taste like ash?

I choose not to answer the question at this time. What is the purpose
of the Church of Virus? I think this is an important question, but
I haven't seen more than a hint of an answer...


Reed Konsler