Now, I may have hideously misunderstood the Objectivist argument for the primacy of existence, in which case I'd appreciate it if someone corrected me; but my basic understanding is that it attempts to show, a priori, that any form of consciousness is entirely dependent on the nature of the external world (and not the other way round), using analysis of the concept of consciousness. Would I be correct in saying that Objectivism holds that the PoE is analytically true--that the dependence of consciousness on reality is contained within the concept of consciousness?
I'm not denying that this is true, but if that is the nature of the argument, then how can we know that it applies to the real world without saying that the nature of our concepts determine the nature of reality? (Which would, of course, presuppose primacy of existence to be false). We from conceptual analysis that anything that conforms to the concept of consciousness is dependent upon reality. But in order to know that anything in the world conforms to the concept of consciousness, we would surely have to empirically check it against every characteristic of consciousness--including its dependence on reality--which is impossible and renders the entire process pointless. (To illustrate, you wouldn't claim to know that someone is a bachelor just because you empirically observed that they are unmarried--you would also have to observe that they were a man.)
So if conceptual analysis can tell us nothing about the real world without empirical checks, surely we cannot use it to establish the primacy of existence, since it is impossible to check? Or have I gone wrong somewhere?