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Subjectivism

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Graham Slee View Drop Down
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    Posted: 29 Oct 2017 at 7:48am
Subjectivism - the doctrine that knowledge is merely subjective and that there is no external or objective truth - could it be true?

As an advertiser (I am told that I am that) I have a responsibility to present objective facts rather than the collective results reported to me by those who have sampled my work (the customer - you perhaps?).

But is there really anything that is objective? And if there isn't, then how can the law be laid down as such? Perhaps law is faith, and if so it must be subjective Wacko

Questions such as this have been raised by many for several years. You'd think the powers that be would have great understanding of it by now - in the 21st century!!! The 21st century - a century which used to be portrayed as the one where mankind would be able to do anything - at least according to Gerry Anderson...

Here's an editorial I found from 1979 in Wireless World regarding the subject of subjectivism (or whatever you want to call it):

The map is not the territory

One can't help wondering why some of the controversies in our correspondence columns about physical realities in electronics seem to get so involved. The disputants seem to be men of intelligence and probity, so why can't they get at the truth, the reality, which must be lurking in there somewhere? Ah, but here's the rub. The truth is one thing, the reality another. As the semanticist Korzybski observed, the map is not the territory. In electronics, as in all of science, what carries the truth (or its antithesis) is a statement or expression in words, mathematics or diagrams, a product of the mind alone; the reality is something out there beyond the mind which we can only approach in a restricted way through the senses, either directly or indirectly by using them to observe meter readings, oscilloscope traces and so on. It does seem that some of our correspondents get confused between these two very different things, especially when they use the word "truth" for rhetorical purposes.

Unfortunately "truth" is an extremely woolly word. Its meanings can range from the spiritual ("I am the way, the truth ... " of Jesus; "Beauty is truth, truth beauty" of Keats) to the strictly formal (as in deductive logic and the truth tables of our electronic logic systems). Somewhere between, perhaps, comes the everyday idea of truth, as used in law and described technically as the "correspondence theory" of truth. In our scientific terms this is the correspondence between the conceptual model or hypothesis (the map) and the set of sometimes disconnected experiences or observations we get from the real world (the territory). Aristotle's version of truth (in the Metaphysics): "To say of what is that it is not, or of what is not that it is, is false; while to say of what is that it is, or of what is not that it is not, is true" doesn't seem to get us very far and is apparently tautologous. But it does have the virtue of distinguishing between statements and reality. And in fact it has been used by the 20th century philosopher Tarski as the basis of a precisely defined correspondence theory of truth.

Some thinkers have claimed that human beings, their consciousness and thoughts, don't have to come into the matter of truth at all. Frege, the logician, for example, said " ... the thought, for example, which we expressed in the Pythagorean theorem is timelessly true, true independently of whether anyone takes it to be true." He seemed to have forgotten that logic itself is a human invention. With the phenomena of reality, however, we certainly have only ourselves to depend on. Bishop Berkeley went so far as to suggest that there might not be anything material around beyond the phenomena we experience. How can we be sure that material objects actually exist when all we have is our notoriously unreliable perceptions to go by? Kant said this was absurd because it implied that there can be appearance without anything that appears, and he went on to postulate "noumena" or things-in-themselves (the real stuff), as distinct from mere phenomena.

One of our great difficulties may be the fact that the very principle of objectivity, so dear to science, is itself really an article of faith, a product of the human mind and therefore of subjectivity. The rigidly "scientific" point of view is both naive and dishonest because it takes for granted, without explicitly mentioning it, the point of view of human consciousness, by which the world must be my world. As such objectivity has its limitations. We still don't know, for example, whether the electron is a particle or a packet of waves.

Not simple enough for Google to understand...
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Dave Friday View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dave Friday Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 Oct 2017 at 12:52pm
Wonderful! Made me laugh,I have always had a problem with subjectivism/objectivism( mostly with hi fi stuff ).
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