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Tag Archives: philosophy

More Intuition-Building On Non-Empirical Science: Three Stories

[Followup to: Building Intuitions On Non-Empirical Arguments In Science] I. In your travels, you arrive at a distant land. The chemists there believe that when you mix an acid and a base, you get salt and water, and a star … Continue reading

Building Intuitions On Non-Empirical Arguments In Science

I. Aeon: Post-Empirical Science Is An Oxymoron And It is Dangerous: There is no agreed criterion to distinguish science from pseudoscience, or just plain ordinary bullshit, opening the door to all manner of metaphysics masquerading as science. This is ‘post-empirical’ … Continue reading

Highlights From The Comments On Kuhn

Thanks to everyone who commented on the review of The Structure Of Scientific Revolutions. From David Chapman: It’s important to remember that Kuhn wrote this seven decades ago. It was one of the most influential books of pop philosophy in … Continue reading

Book Review: The Structure Of Scientific Revolutions

When I hear scientists talk about Thomas Kuhn, he sounds very reasonable. Scientists have theories that guide their work. Sometimes they run into things their theories can’t explain. Then some genius develops a new theory, and scientists are guided by … Continue reading

The Economic Perspective On Moral Standards

[Content warning: scrupulosity. Some recent edits, see Mistakes page for details.] I. There are some pretty morally unacceptable things going on in a pretty structural way in society. Sometimes I hear some activists take this to an extreme: no currently … Continue reading

Book Review: Madness And Civilization

[Content warning: Severe mistreatment of the mentally ill. Through this post, I’ll be following Foucault in using the politically incorrect term “madness” rather than the more modern “mental illness”, because a big part of his point is worrying about the … Continue reading

Postmodernism For Rationalists (my attempt)

EDIT: Been told by people I trust that this is not a good explanation. Retracted.

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Contra Askell On Moral Offsets

I. Philosopher Amanda Askell questions the practice of moral offsetting. Offsetting is where you compensate for a bad thing by doing a good thing, then consider yourself even. For example, an environmentalist takes a carbon-belching plane flight, then pays to … Continue reading

Survey Results: Suffering Vs. Oblivion

[Content warning: suffering, oblivion] Every so often, someone on Reddit realizes that about half of people wipe themselves with toilet paper sitting down, and the other half do it standing up. This discovery is followed by horror on both sides … Continue reading

Against Against Autism Cures

[Content warning: autism, disability, psychiatry, abuse] I. Vox: We’ve called autism a disease for decades. We were wrong. I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, I know and like many people in the autism rights movement. They … Continue reading