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The Gettier counterexamples to Justified True Belief as knowledge

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18 minutes ago, DonAthos said:

 

32 minutes ago, Plasmatic said:

I was trying to tell you that there are other reasons why one could hold that false beliefs are not knowledge other than the reasons you imputed in your analysis of the   motivations of those who hold this.

I still don't quite follow. But let's leave "motivation" aside for the moment, if possible. I'd like to get the basics squared away first.

And if we can agree on the basics, then maybe I can more easily understand your point about motivation.

Quote

The belief that Osama Bin Laden was responsible for 9/11 is only knowledge if it is true/ a fact that Bin laden was responsible for 9/11. (Whether or not I think your belief is true and therefore constitutes knowledge is irrelevant to the question of whether untrue beliefs are knowledge generally. )

All right. So let's start here:

I have a belief that Bin Laden was responsible for 9/11.

This belief that I have is either 1) knowledge or 2) not knowledge. This depends on whether or not it is true that Bin Laden was responsible for 9/11.

Thus far, am I correct?

If so, I guess my initial questions are:

1) Is it possible for me to determine whether my belief is knowledge or not knowledge?

2) If it is possible for me to do this, how exactly would I go about it in this case?

 

You are thus far correct.

1). Yes, by reducing your beliefs via a valid epistemology back to the perceptual. A theory about unperceived causes is a special case of knowing that gets much more complicated and involves a whole theory of induction. Not what I would really call "the basics" of what constitutes knowledge.

2). Is asking for me to lay out an entire epistemology. (Theory of knowledge) 

Edited by Plasmatic

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Just now, Eiuol said:

Why would that be justified?

 

The belief would be justified because the subject has good reasons for believing that the experimenters are telling the truth (suppose). And also because the subject's seeing a dog is evidence for the belief that the screen always shows a dog.

Quote

If a person had a "thickly" justified belief (as opposed to non-rational justifications), all that matters there is that one is certain of it being the truth, despite the possibility that the specific piece of knowledge is false. So, do you mean to say that any false belief can only be the result of either poor justifications or error of reasoning? I mean, I agree that poor justification or errors of reasoning do not result in knowledge, and result in necessarily false beliefs.

 

I'm not sure how this relates to my argument, but I will answer the questions anyway.

First, I am not at all saying that false beliefs can only be the result of either poor justifications or error of reasoning. One can have good justifications for false beliefs (although only if he lacks some piece of evidence that would lead him to adopt the true belief).

I do not agree at all that poor justifications lead to necessarily false beliefs. Although, I think you meant to say that bad reasoning necessarily leads to false belief rather than that bad reasoning leads to necessarily false beliefs. Given that, no, bad reasoning can result in true beliefs.

Take any yes/no question. You flip a coin to decide the answer and you will be right about 50% of the time.

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3 minutes ago, Plasmatic said:

You are thus far correct.

Excellent.

3 minutes ago, Plasmatic said:

1). Yes, by reducing your beliefs via a valid epistemology back to the perceptual. A theory about unperceived causes is a special case of knowing that gets much more complicated and involves a whole theory of induction. Not what I would really call "the basics" of what constitutes knowledge.

Well, what I mean by "the basics" is that I'm laying claim to have some piece of knowledge, but I'd like to put that to the test so that I can see whether what I consider to be "knowledge" is the same as what you do. (It is hard for us to discuss "knowledge" at all if we don't mean the same thing.)

But set that aside for a moment. You've said "yes," which means that there exists some means for me to determine whether my belief that Bin Laden is responsible for 9/11 is or is not knowledge. And so let's move to #2.

3 minutes ago, Plasmatic said:

2). Is asking for me to lay out an entire epistemology. (Theory of knowledge)

Is it? I wouldn't have thought so. (It wasn't my intention to ask you to lay out an entire theory of knowledge... although, I suppose that it's hard for us to discuss "what knowledge is" without getting into one's "theory of knowledge" to some extent.)

I don't necessarily need abstract proofs (though perhaps I will have to dig more deeply as we proceed, to aid in understanding), but at the moment I'd just like some concrete details about this specific case:

If I was interested in determining that my belief about Bin Laden was knowledge, or not, then what actions would I take? Can you give me an idea (hopefully short of an entire epistemology) as to at what point I would be satisfied, and could say that either my belief is or is not knowledge?

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4 minutes ago, DonAthos said:

Well, what I mean by "the basics" is that I'm laying claim to have some piece of knowledge, but I'd like to put that to the test so that I can see whether what I consider to be "knowledge" is the same as what you do. (It is hard for us to discuss "knowledge" at all if we don't mean the same thing.)

The basic concepts involved in Gettier's JTB are:

1). Justification

2).Truth

3). Belief

4). Knowledge

The debate here basically centers around how to define these concepts and the hierarchal relation of them to one another. All the Gettier examples given basically are ways to attempt to do the above. 

The added contentions are around what Oist epistemology says about the above 4 concepts and hierarchal relations. 

 

Finding out if we mean the same thing is usually done by simply stating your definition of a given concept. In this case the concept knowledge. 

Definition:

Knowledge is the recognition/identification of the facts of reality.  

Do you agree with this definition?

 

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9 minutes ago, DonAthos said:

If I was interested in determining that my belief about Bin Laden was knowledge, or not, then what actions would I take?

This is to mis-understand induction.  From the McCaskey paper (link in my post above).

The other, and older, way to think about induction—Aristotle’s way, later revived during the Scientific Revolution—was to think not of particular and universal statements but of particular things, kinds of things, and universal properties, especially defining properties.

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JTB is from Plato, not Gettier.

EDIT:

Meno:

Men. What do you mean by the word "right"?

Soc. I will explain. If a man knew the way to Larisa, or anywhere else, and went to the place and led others thither, would he not be a right and good guide?

Men. Certainly.

Soc. And a person who had a right opinion about the way, but had never been and did not know, might be a good guide also, might he not?

Men. Certainly.

Soc. And while he has true opinion about that which the other knows, he will be just as good a guide if he thinks the truth, as he who knows the truth?

Men. Exactly.

Soc. Then true opinion is as good a guide to correct action as knowledge; and that was the point which we omitted in our speculation about the nature of virtue, when we said that knowledge only is the guide of right action; whereas there is also right opinion.

Men. True.

Soc. Then right opinion is not less useful than knowledge?

Men. The difference, Socrates, is only that he who has knowledge will always be right; but he who has right opinion will sometimes be right, and sometimes not.

Soc. What do you mean? Can he be wrong who has right opinion, so long as he has right opinion?

Men. I admit the cogency of your argument, and therefore, Socrates, I wonder that knowledge should be preferred to right opinion-or why they should ever differ.

Soc. And shall I explain this wonder to you?

Men. Do tell me.

Soc. You would not wonder if you had ever observed the images of Daedalus; but perhaps you have not got them in your country?

Men. What have they to do with the question?

Soc. Because they require to be fastened in order to keep them, and if they are not fastened they will play truant and run away.

Men. Well. what of that?

Soc. I mean to say that they are not very valuable possessions if they are at liberty, for they will walk off like runaway slaves; but when fastened, they are of great value, for they are really beautiful works of art. Now this is an illustration of the nature of true opinions: while they abide with us they are beautiful and fruitful, but they run away out of the human soul, and do not remain long, and therefore they are not of much value until they are fastened by the tie of the cause; and this fastening of them, friend Meno, is recollection, as you and I have agreed to call it. But when they are bound, in the first place, they have the nature of knowledge; and, in the second place, they are abiding. And this is why knowledge is more honourable and excellent than true opinion, because fastened by a chain.

Men. What you are saying, Socrates, seems to be very like the truth.

Soc. I too speak rather in ignorance; I only conjecture. And yet that knowledge differs from true opinion is no matter of conjecture with me. There are not many things which I profess to know, but this is most certainly one of them.

Edited by SpookyKitty

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9 minutes ago, SpookyKitty said:

JTB is from Plato, not Gettier.

I wasn't making a claim about origins of JTB but about Gettier's claims about JTB.  I assume you are referring to "The basic concepts involved in Gettier's JTB are:" I assume that knowledge of what Gettier said about JTB is sufficient to know what I was referring to. 

The basic concepts involved in Gettier's claims about JTB are:

Better?

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Just now, Plasmatic said:

I wasn't making a claim about origins of JTB but about Gettier's claims about JTB.  I assume you are referring to "The basic concepts involved in Gettier's JTB are:" I assume that knowledge of what Gettier said about JTB is sufficient to know what I was referring to. 

The basic concepts involved in Gettier's claims about JTB are:

Better?

 

Ok.... I was just sayin'....

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6 hours ago, SpookyKitty said:

This sort of thing completely downplays the fact that Newtonian physics makes fundamental claims about the universe that are flat-out false, such as the existence of absolute simultaneity or a force of gravity.

Newtonian physics is comprised of Newton's three Laws of Motion and the Law of Gravitation.   The Law of Gravitation is method to come up with a particular magnitude and direction for the force of gravity caused by a body having mass so that the figure can be employed in mathematical relations based on the 3 laws of motion.  Newton's Laws of Motion continue to be the basis of all subsequent physics without contradiction, and the Law of Gravity is still the only way to calculate the attraction caused by a mass.   Absolute simultaneity is not a claim about the universe that is entailed by any of Newton's Laws.  If Einstein wants to postulate a cause of gravity in curved space-time, what has that got to do with Newton who famously offered no hypothesis as to why gravity exists?  

 

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4 hours ago, SpookyKitty said:

JTB is from Plato, not Gettier.

EDIT:

Meno:

Men. What do you mean by the word "right"?

Soc. I will explain. If a man knew the way to Larisa, or anywhere else, and went to the place and led others thither, would he not be a right and good guide?

Men. Certainly.

Soc. And a person who had a right opinion about the way, but had never been and did not know, might be a good guide also, might he not?

Men. Certainly.

Soc. And while he has true opinion about that which the other knows, he will be just as good a guide if he thinks the truth, as he who knows the truth?

Men. Exactly.

Soc. Then true opinion is as good a guide to correct action as knowledge; and that was the point which we omitted in our speculation about the nature of virtue, when we said that knowledge only is the guide of right action; whereas there is also right opinion.

Men. True.

Soc. Then right opinion is not less useful than knowledge?

Men. The difference, Socrates, is only that he who has knowledge will always be right; but he who has right opinion will sometimes be right, and sometimes not.

Soc. What do you mean? Can he be wrong who has right opinion, so long as he has right opinion?

Men. I admit the cogency of your argument, and therefore, Socrates, I wonder that knowledge should be preferred to right opinion-or why they should ever differ.

Soc. And shall I explain this wonder to you?

Men. Do tell me.

Soc. You would not wonder if you had ever observed the images of Daedalus; but perhaps you have not got them in your country?

Men. What have they to do with the question?

Soc. Because they require to be fastened in order to keep them, and if they are not fastened they will play truant and run away.

Men. Well. what of that?

Soc. I mean to say that they are not very valuable possessions if they are at liberty, for they will walk off like runaway slaves; but when fastened, they are of great value, for they are really beautiful works of art. Now this is an illustration of the nature of true opinions: while they abide with us they are beautiful and fruitful, but they run away out of the human soul, and do not remain long, and therefore they are not of much value until they are fastened by the tie of the cause; and this fastening of them, friend Meno, is recollection, as you and I have agreed to call it. But when they are bound, in the first place, they have the nature of knowledge; and, in the second place, they are abiding. And this is why knowledge is more honourable and excellent than true opinion, because fastened by a chain.

Men. What you are saying, Socrates, seems to be very like the truth.

Soc. I too speak rather in ignorance; I only conjecture. And yet that knowledge differs from true opinion is no matter of conjecture with me. There are not many things which I profess to know, but this is most certainly one of them.

Plato's standard of justification is usefulness.  How about that.

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7 hours ago, Plasmatic said:

Another is the realization that defining knowledge according to belief apart from corresponence to fact is the defining charachteristic of the primacy of consciousness and is a subjectivist theory of epistemology.

But correspondence can often be a matter of degree.  How much correspondence is enough?  According to Rand perception is essentially measurement, and measurements are always and only to within a certain range of precision.   So then even our automatic and infallible perceptions do not correspond perfectly with reality.  In Objectivist epistemology concepts omit measurements completely, so the remaining correspondence of a concept to reality takes an entire book to explain.  Yet knowledge is still possible to finite and fallible human consciousness because the degree of correspondence required is not perfect correspondence but the lesser standard of usefulness.  There is a useful and justifying degree of correspondence when our knowledge can explain without contradiction, can predict reliably, and ultimately serves the practical end-in-itself of living.

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7 hours ago, Plasmatic said:

Finding out if we mean the same thing is usually done by simply stating your definition of a given concept. In this case the concept knowledge.

I don't think this is necessarily the case. An Objectivist and Libertarian might "define" liberty in the same manner, or agree to some given definition, at least -- but that doesn't mean that they're referring to the same things in reality, or would come to the same conclusions in the same situations. They still don't necessarily mean the same thing when they discuss "liberty," agreement to a definition notwithstanding.

I don't love the methodology of arguing out of definitions, at any rate -- especially in an exclusive fashion -- because I think it lends itself too easily to mistake and miscommunication. It is clear to me that we have some area of disagreement/discrepancy between us, but so far I don't understand the nature of that disagreement. And so my initial project is to ferret it out.

I can't fault your definition of knowledge, per se, with which I take no particular issue, but that's why I would like to continue to look at a concrete example so that I can get a better idea of the meaning of it -- to see what we share and where we depart from one another, in terms of a real situation.

Thus far, this is what we've established:

1) I hold a belief that Bin Laden was responsible for 9/11.

2) This belief either is or is not knowledge.

3) It is possible for me to determine whether my belief is or is not knowledge.

You have agreed that these three statements are true. (Please correct if I'm wrong about that.) And thus it remains to demonstrate how I may determine whether or not my belief is knowledge -- not in terms of laying out an entire theory of knowledge, necessarily, but just how I, DonAthos, can go about validating this one belief. An informal discussion, even, of how I may achieve this. Just something so that I can see how I may do this, so that I can understand your position.

I think this is potentially a fruitful area of exploration, because:

Ordinarily, I would say, "I know who was responsible for 9/11 -- it was Osama Bin Laden." I would consider that to be "knowledge," per my own standards for such a thing, and reflective of my own understanding of what "knowledge" is. And thus, if you do not think that it is knowledge that I hold, if you consider me to be mistaken on that count (meaning that I have a belief, but not knowledge), then it seems to me that this will point the way to the nature of our disagreement.

Or even if you consider me to hold knowledge in this particular case, the question of how we determine that this is, in fact, knowledge, directly comments on the central debate of the thread (and where we seem to disagree).

For consider:

If I were to appeal to the standard of "justified belief," and say that I know that Bin Laden was responsible for 9/11 because the evidence that I have suggests that he was responsible ("evidence" largely including that "momma said so," where "momma" here refers to the United States Government or various news services), and it does not seem to contradict the other things I hold as knowledge, I believe that you would hold that as insufficient. Based upon my current understanding of your position, I expect that you would say that my belief is therefore not (yet) knowledge, but that what is missing from my belief, to make it proper knowledge, is any demonstration that my belief is true. (Please correct me if I have that wrong.)

So okay. My initial critique of this additional requirement "true" (not speaking to you directly, but just about "justified true belief" as I've heard it used elsewhere, and upthread) was that it would make "knowledge" impossible -- but I expect that you, Plasmatic, cannot believe that. You are no skeptic. You have further stated directly that I can determine whether my belief is or is not knowledge, which is precisely what I wanted to hear (because I am no skeptic either), and so that's the very thing I would like to understand as regards your position. It is where the rubber meets the road. And it is also where I expect to be able to see the nature of our central disagreement -- or even be convinced by you, if you can show me that "true" is not an impossible requirement after all.

And so I ask again: what is the process in this case for determining whether this specific, particular belief is or is not knowledge?

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10 hours ago, SpookyKitty said:

The belief would be justified because the subject has good reasons for believing that the experimenters are telling the truth (suppose). And also because the subject's seeing a dog is evidence for the belief that the screen always shows a dog.

Your example is asking me to suppose it was justified, that the justification fails to correspond to reality, and there is no truth as to what the screen always shows since it is a random image. So, justification is not quite good enough, as it does not tell me the truth of the matter. Not only are am I looking to find the truth about reality, I want to be sure I didn't just get lucky.

My response is to raise the standards of justification, that the subject did NOT have good reasons. That would mean believing the experimenters wasn't justified.

Seeing the dog is some evidence that the screen might always show a dog, but that's not enough to be justified.

Suppose I was still wrong, and the screen really always showed a dog, despite my conclusion it was random. My standards were already raised. As far as was possible to know (I don't mean something like since I didn't have access to the coding, I just made due with what I had), it really did correspond to reality. I would say I knew it because I was certain. The experimenters would phrase it as only belief, because they already know that the screen is not random.

10 hours ago, SpookyKitty said:

Take any yes/no question. You flip a coin to decide the answer and you will be right about 50% of the time.

I don't remember why I said bad reasoning always leads to false beliefs - it was wrong. I do know bad reasoning always leads to an unjustified belief, even if the belief is indeed true. Good reasoning -reliably- leads to true belief(s), even if occasionally I get a false belief.

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6 hours ago, Grames said:

 Yet knowledge is still possible to finite and fallible human consciousness because the degree of correspondence required is not perfect correspondence but the lesser standard of usefulness.  There is a useful and justifying degree of correspondence when our knowledge can explain without contradiction, can predict reliably, and ultimately serves the practical end-in-itself of living.

This cannot be stressed enough on an Objectivist forum.  And it is the reason that Classical Mechanics is still employed.

6 hours ago, Grames said:

But correspondence can often be a matter of degree.  How much correspondence is enough?

In Medieval times, men knew about 3-crop rotation.  Their explanation for why or how it works was wrong, but observation trumps explanation every time.  Irregardless of their explanation, it did work.  The same can be said for the Wright Brothers.

Einstein's formulation of Special and General Relativity was based on experimental observations made by Plank, Maxwell, the Michelson-Morley experiment, a reconsideration of Browning Motion, etc.  These observations did not "correspond" to our previous understanding of the then currently held theories, and these observations required a wider expansion of theory.  This does not mean that any knowledge put to work in building things prior to Einstein was "fictional".

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2 hours ago, Grames said:

 

Newtonian physics is comprised of Newton's three Laws of Motion and the Law of Gravitation.   The Law of Gravitation is method to come up with a particular magnitude and direction for the force of gravity caused by a body having mass so that the figure can be employed in mathematical relations based on the 3 laws of motion.  Newton's Laws of Motion continue to be the basis of all subsequent physics without contradiction, and the Law of Gravity is still the only way to calculate the attraction caused by a mass.   Absolute simultaneity is not a claim about the universe that is entailed by any of Newton's Laws.  If Einstein wants to postulate a cause of gravity in curved space-time, what has that got to do with Newton who famously offered no hypothesis as to why gravity exists?  

 

 

Newton's second and third laws of motion and the law of gravitation are definitely false in relativity. This is because all three of these laws presuppose absolute simultaneity.

Quote

and the Law of Gravity is still the only way to calculate the attraction caused by a mass.  

 

Ummm... no?

Quote

If Einstein wants to postulate a cause of gravity in curved space-time, what has that got to do with Newton who famously offered no hypothesis as to why gravity exists?  

 

What Newton said he did not offer is a mechanical explanation of the force of gravity, not a hypothesis as to why gravity exists. General Relativity says that there is no force of gravity in the first place.

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Just now, Eiuol said:

Your example is asking me to suppose it was justified, that the justification fails to correspond to reality, and there is no truth as to what the screen always shows since it is a random image. So, justification is not quite good enough, as it does not tell me the truth of the matter. Not only are am I looking to find the truth about reality, I want to be sure I didn't just get lucky.

My response is to raise the standards of justification, that the subject did NOT have good reasons. That would mean believing the experimenters wasn't justified.

Seeing the dog is some evidence that the screen might always show a dog, but that's not enough to be justified.

Suppose I was still wrong, and the screen really always showed a dog, despite my conclusion it was random. My standards were already raised. As far as was possible to know (I don't mean something like since I didn't have access to the coding, I just made due with what I had), it really did correspond to reality. I would say I knew it because I was certain. The experimenters would phrase it as only belief, because they already know that the screen is not random.

I don't remember why I said bad reasoning always leads to false beliefs - it was wrong. I do know bad reasoning always leads to an unjustified belief, even if the belief is indeed true. Good reasoning -reliably- leads to true belief(s), even if occasionally I get a false belief.

 

Why don't you give me the exact conditions for justification? Otherwise we'll be arguing over how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.

Edited by SpookyKitty

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2 hours ago, SpookyKitty said:

Why don't you give me the exact conditions for justification? Otherwise we'll be arguing over how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.

I did before, so I'll mention them again and explain more.

Originally, I wrote: "Justification in Objectivism is pretty "thick" as not only must a belief cohere with other beliefs, it needs a foundation in perception, and the belief must involve things like intellectual honesty and desiring the truth." I explained before why the last one is in line with Rand. The others should be self-explanatory as to why Rand would like them. But, any explicit theory of justification (as opposed to piecing together Rand's ideas) is mine.

Coherence - All beliefs that one holds that are justified will be logically consistent with all other beliefs one holds

Perceptual foundation - All justified beliefs can be traced to perception at least indirectly. The "base" of the knowledge skyscraper is perceptual beliefs, which are beliefs that evaluate perceptual content.

Correspondence with reality - All justified beliefs are connected to reality as it is. Probably a broader way to state "perceptual foundation", which is the only way to find out how a belief corresponds to reality

Virtue - All justified beliefs are the result of intellectual actions and mental states. One needs to be seeking truth, by means of reason. This implies honesty as one, and if we get into it deeply, I'd explain these virtues as the same ones Rand used, and PERHAPS one or two that Aristotle used like courage.

Narrowness - All justified beliefs can only be as "wide" as the relevant classifications of a belief's corresponding existent. That a single TV shows an image of a dog leading you to say "it always shows a dog" is too wide when you are really just saying "it always shows a dog when I'm in the room at 2pm". 

 

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3 hours ago, SpookyKitty said:

Newton's second and third laws of motion and the law of gravitation are definitely false in relativity. This is because all three of these laws presuppose absolute simultaneity.

Citation please, I have no idea of your level of knowledge on this subject.

Furthermore, I claim that relativity cannot even be derived without using Newton's laws.  For example the equivalence principle that states that a mass in a gravity field and mass under a constant acceleration are indistinguishable presumes Newton's Third Law is valid to set up the equality m1aq=m2a2.   Claiming Relativity proves Newtons Laws invalid is like claiming there exists a logical proof that the Law of Noncontradiction is invalid.  

3 hours ago, SpookyKitty said:

Ummm... no?

Ummm ... yes?  Because of the principle of mass-energy equivalence Relativity takes into account all of the energies present aw well as the inertial mass, but that mass component is still there, still subject to inverse square attenuation with distance and still proportional to a gravitational constant.

 

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On 1/23/2017 at 0:09 AM, Grames said:

Citation please, I have no idea of your level of knowledge on this subject.

Nor I, yours.

But let me explain why they are false anyway.

Newton's second law states that the net force F on a body will be related to its acceleration by F/m = a. This implies that a force could accelerate a body to a velocity higher than the speed of light. Which, according to special relativity is impossible.

Newton's thrid law states that for every force exerted by a body A on body B along the line incident with their centers of mass there is an equal and opposite force along the same line toward A from B. The problem with this law is that it results in instantaneous action at a distance. It would allow faster than light communication between objects, which relativity forbids.

The law of gravitation is false because there is no force of gravity. Eintein's tower gedankenexperiment (a good rundown of it is here: http://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/8940/how-can-gravitational-forces-influence-time) proves that all theories of gravitation based on forces are inconsistent with speical relativity.

Quote

Furthermore, I claim that relativity cannot even be derived without using Newton's laws.  For example the equivalence principle that states that a mass in a gravity field and mass under a constant acceleration are indistinguishable presumes Newton's Third Law is valid to set up the equality m1aq=m2a2.   Claiming Relativity proves Newtons Laws invalid is like claiming there exists a logical proof that the Law of Noncontradiction is invalid.  

 

There is a lot wrong with this and it's hard to know where to begin.

The equivalence principle states that frames of reference in uniform gravitational fields and those which are uniformly accelerating are indistinguishable.

Newton's thrid law is not relevant here, nor is your equation m1aq=m2a2 even meaningful.

Quote

Ummm ... yes?  Because of the principle of mass-energy equivalence Relativity takes into account all of the energies present aw well as the inertial mass, but that mass component is still there, still subject to inverse square attenuation with distance and still proportional to a gravitational constant.

 

You claimed that the inverse square law is "still the only way to measure the attraction produced by a mass...". First, it is not the only way. Gravity is analyzed using Einstein's field equations which make no mention of forces of any kind. And for that reason it isn't even the correct way.

The current scientific status of Newtonian physics is that it is strictly speaking false, and its predictions are only approximately correct.

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On 1/22/2017 at 11:12 PM, Eiuol said:

I did before, so I'll mention them again and explain more.

Originally, I wrote: "Justification in Objectivism is pretty "thick" as not only must a belief cohere with other beliefs, it needs a foundation in perception, and the belief must involve things like intellectual honesty and desiring the truth." I explained before why the last one is in line with Rand. The others should be self-explanatory as to why Rand would like them. But, any explicit theory of justification (as opposed to piecing together Rand's ideas) is mine.

Coherence - All beliefs that one holds that are justified will be logically consistent with all other beliefs one holds

Perceptual foundation - All justified beliefs can be traced to perception at least indirectly. The "base" of the knowledge skyscraper is perceptual beliefs, which are beliefs that evaluate perceptual content.

Correspondence with reality - All justified beliefs are connected to reality as it is. Probably a broader way to state "perceptual foundation", which is the only way to find out how a belief corresponds to reality

Virtue - All justified beliefs are the result of intellectual actions and mental states. One needs to be seeking truth, by means of reason. This implies honesty as one, and if we get into it deeply, I'd explain these virtues as the same ones Rand used, and PERHAPS one or two that Aristotle used like courage.

Narrowness - All justified beliefs can only be as "wide" as the relevant classifications of a belief's corresponding existent. That a single TV shows an image of a dog leading you to say "it always shows a dog" is too wide when you are really just saying "it always shows a dog when I'm in the room at 2pm". 

 

 

Can you give me a simple example of a justified belief that meets these criteria?

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18 minutes ago, SpookyKitty said:

The law of gravitation is false because there is no force of gravity. Eintein's tower gedankenexperiment (a good rundown of it is here: http://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/8940/how-can-gravitational-forces-influence-time) proves that all theories of gravitation based on forces are inconsistent with speical relativity.

From Wiki Fundamental Interaction

In physics, the fundamental interactions, also known as fundamental forces, are the interactions that do not appear to be reducible to more basic interactions. There are four conventionally accepted fundamental interactions—gravitational, electromagnetic, strong nuclear, and weak nuclear. Each one is described mathematically as a field. The gravitational force is modeled as a continuous classical field. The other three, part of the Standard Model of particle physics, are described as discrete quantum fields, and their interactions are each carried by a quantum, an elementary particle.

Have you reconciled the QM/GR Quantum Gravity issue that many physicists are working on, and not told anyone? If so, I'd recommend you alert the Nobel Committee!

From wiki link:

The current understanding of gravity is based on Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, which is formulated within the framework of classical physics. On the other hand, the nongravitational forces are described within the framework of quantum mechanics, a radically different formalism for describing physical phenomena based on the wave-like nature of matter. The necessity of a quantum mechanical description of gravity follows from the fact that one cannot consistently couple a classical system to a quantum one.

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31 minutes ago, SpookyKitty said:

The current scientific status of Newtonian physics is that it is strictly speaking false, and its predictions are only approximately correct.

But if QM and GR are not reconciled, then both QM and GR - like Newtonian Mechanics - are "only approximations", right?  QED?

Or maybe all Mechanics are "approximations"?

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9 minutes ago, SpookyKitty said:

I don't see what your point is. Modern physics does not include any sort of forces in the classical sense of the word.

The fact that QM and GR are not reconciled around the issue of Gravity is the fundamental issue driving modern physics.

Edit:  Question:  Is this an epistemic issue [which I believe it is] or an ontological issue?

Edited by New Buddha

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Just now, New Buddha said:

But if QM and GR are not reconciled, then both QM and GR - like Newtonian Mechanics - are "only approximations", right?  QED?

Or maybe all Mechanics are "approximations"?

 

You're right. GR, stritctly speaking, isn't true either.

But as far as theories of gravity go, it's the best we've got.

Edited by SpookyKitty

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