The Instigator
shakuntala
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
ArgentStorm
Con (against)
Winning
8 Points

Science loses its privileged place at the centre of the universe as a privileged knower- we now have

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
ArgentStorm
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/12/2013 Category: Science
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 705 times Debate No: 35545
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (2)

 

shakuntala

Pro

It seems to be accepted-without proof- that "man" is somehow a privileged knower of the universe This scholar points out Science loses its privileged place at the centre of the universe as a privileged knower- we now have a new Copernican revolution -man is decentred

http://www.scribd.com...

Man can not know the universe as his language used to know it only falsifies the universe. This results in the death of man i.e. the death of asserting a privileged observer of the universe.
All we have is an endless free play of words trying to capture the universe but all these words are man"s own creation which in fact falsifies the universe. With the decentring of man from the universe we have no guaranteed facts or interpretations which are authoritive since the words we use for these facts or interpretations only falsify the referents. The universe is now seen as being that which is produced by man via his culturally arbitrary conventional systems of signs i.e. language.

As Zajak notes "particles and waves are macroscopic concepts which gradually lose their relevance as we approach the submicroscopic domain.H.Zajak,. Optics, Addison Wesly Publishing Company, New York., P. 449

Bohr said "The very words physicists use to describe reality constrain their knowledge of it and scientists in every field will one day encounter this barrier to human understanding." A. Wick, The Infamous Boundary, Birkhauser, Berlin, 1995 p.39

Bohr said " the role of theory is to predict what we see on the dails of our apparatus they say if the predictions are accurate the theory is god Answering these other questions about what is really going on -is a meaningless excersise." V, Stenger The unconscious Quantum, Prometheus books, 1995, p 10

" [operationalism]To avoid the imprecision"s of ordinary speech [Bridgman] identified the meaning of a concept in terms of the set of operations used to measure it .. He considered the difference between laboratory physics and the cosmology of general relativity to be the difference between science and nonscience." A. Bulock & O Stallybrass & S. Trombley, "Operationalism in The Fontana Dictionary of Modern Thought, Fontana, 1988, p.609

"Einstein"s famous rejection of the concept of absolute simultaneity on the grounds that the simultaneity of events is always relative to the frame of reference of the observer, who is assessing it, is operationalism in spirit." P, Barry, Beginning theory, Manchester university press, 2002 p 113
ArgentStorm

Con

As you have neglected to establish where the burden of proof rests, I will assume you are comfortable with taking it on (as you are the one asserting something less than intuitive).

Colin Leslie Dean is a hack who's never been accepted as a reliable source, nor published academically. But, let's skip the ad hominem reasons for disregarding his work and instead critique his ideas, shall we?

His thesis, as I interpret it, is that due to limitations in language, scientific observations cannot be elocuted with complete accuracy, thereby undermining the accuracy of the theories and principles we promulgate. Even if he was accurate in this (which he is not-- by it's very nature, language evolves in order to properly express abstract ideas and innovations), this does not exactly ADD anything to human scientific or philosophical understanding. In essence, it's merely an appeal to a lingual, rather than general sensory, solipsism; an idea held in some scorn for its status as untestable and unfalsifiable nature. Indeed, even if we accept it as fact (which no right-minded person would), we are left with two options: either we renounce all attempts to understand the universe, or we proceed in our current manner regardless. In this way, Mr. Dean's thesis is both of no value, and as merely a reapplication of solipsism, unoriginal.
Debate Round No. 1
shakuntala

Pro

you say
"Colin Leslie Dean is a hack who's never been accepted as a reliable source, nor published academically. But, let's skip the ad hominem reasons for disregarding his work and instead critique his ideas, shall we?

His thesis, as I interpret it, is that due to limitations in language, scientific observations cannot be elocuted with complete accuracy, thereby undermining the accuracy of the theories and principles we promulgate. Even if he was accurate in this (which he is not-- by it's very nature, language evolves in order to properly express abstract ideas and innovations), this does not exactly ADD anything to human scientific or philosophical understanding. In essence, it's merely an appeal to a lingual, rather than general sensory, solipsism; an idea held in some scorn for its status as untestable and unfalsifiable nature. Indeed, even if we accept it as fact (which no right-minded person would), we are left with two options: either we renounce all attempts to understand the universe, or we proceed in our current manner regardless. In this way, Mr. Dean's thesis is both of no value, and as merely a reapplication of solipsism, unoriginal.

point 1 con says
"Even if he was accurate in this (which he is not"
but has given no proof of this statement

point 2 con goes onto says

Even if he was accurate in this (which he is not..., this does not exactly ADD anything to human scientific or philosophical understanding."

just because it adds nothing to scientific or philosophical understanding this is no logical refutation of deans thesis

point 3 con says
"Indeed, even if we accept it as fact (which no right-minded person would), we are left with two options: either we renounce all attempts to understand the universe, or we proceed in our current manner regardless. In this way, In this way, Mr. Dean's thesis is both of no value, and as merely a reapplication of solipsism, unoriginal.
"

Being a no right-minded person is not a refutation I bet in his day Galileo was considered a no right-minded person

point 4 con says
"either we renounce all attempts to understand the universe or we proceed in our current manner regardless.In this way, Mr. Dean's thesis is both of no value"

just because Mr. Dean's thesis is both of no value is no refutation I bet some said the same about Galileo thesit

5 con says
"Mr. Dean's thesis is both of no value, and as merely a reapplication of solipsism, unoriginal."

con says deans thesis is unoriginal - so who else has said deans thesis
but con has given us no sources of others which agree with deans thesis so this is again no refutation of deans thesis
ArgentStorm

Con

P1. Pro misquotes me by omission, here. He selectively reproduces the prelude to my argument, while leaving out the argument proper. It is reproduced here, in full, for posterity:

"Even if he was accurate in this (which he is not-- by it's very nature, language evolves in order to properly express abstract ideas and innovations)"

P2. Pro again misquoted me by omission. See P1 regarding the inherent nature of language. If one desires an example of a lingual innovation in order to express a novel concept, consider the word "McMansion", defined by Merriam-Webster's online dictionary as:

Main Entry: Mc"Man"sion"

Pronunciation: \mək-G2;man(t)-shən
Function: noun

Date: 1990

: a very large house built in usually a suburban neighborhood or development ; especially : one regarded critically as oversized and ostentatious

Note the date: 1990. This is evidence that new words are being coined to fill novel needs.

P3. Pro again misses the refutation.

P4. Pro acknowledges that Dean's thesis is of no value. Occam's razor states that we should not multiply complexities unnecessarily. As Dean's thesis is of no value and does not ADD anything to human scientific or philosophical understanding, and therefore adds an unnecessary, complex layer to it, it should therefore be sheared.

P5. Pro asks for sources regarding solipsism. As it is a relatively common concept, I did not believe a source necessary, however I will comply. According to Wikipedia:

"As an epistemological position, solipsism holds that knowledge of anything outside one's own mind is unsure. The external world and other minds cannot be known ... As such it is the only epistemological position that, by its own postulate, is both irrefutable and yet indefensible in the same manner."

In arguing that language in insufficiently precise to articulate ideas accurately, Pro is, in substance arguing that we cannot know what others observe, that we cannot, in essence, know the universe as we translate our visceral experience into language and incorporate it into what we know anecdotally. Indeed, his very thesis that "man cannot know the universe" is merely paraphrasing solipsism's definition. Further, by asserting that language is sufficiently flawed that we cannot know, his argument can be neither proved (which would constitute knowing), nor disproved (since that would also constitute knowing). Unfortunately for pro, as he has not argued my assignment of the burden of proof to him and has, we must assume, therefore accepted it, he logically cannot fulfill his obligations since, if he is correct, by his own postulate it cannot be proven."

http://en.m.wikipedia.org...

http://i.word.com...
Debate Round No. 2
shakuntala

Pro

con says
"Pro asks for sources regarding solipsism. "

What I asked for was sources supporting your claim that dean was not original

You said deans thesis was unorginal -deans thesis as the post tells you "is Science loses its privileged place at the centre of the universe as a privileged knower"
but
I asked not for sources on solipsism
but
sources which are saying deans thesis
deans thesis is "Science loses its privileged place at the centre of the universe as a privileged knower"

you have not backed up your claim that deans thesis is unorginal with sources which show dean is just saying others have said
on the thesis
"Science loses its privileged place at the centre of the universe as a privileged knower"

as for the rest of your rejoinder points I will let those who want to plow through your points the pleasure

but to the point
you have given no refutation of deans thesis
deans thesis is "Science loses its privileged place at the centre of the universe as a privileged knower"

the only source you quote is wiki on solipsism
which is not a refutation of deans thesis
deans thesis is "Science loses its privileged place at the centre of the universe as a privileged knower"

what you needed to do was give argument and sources to support a refutation of dean and that would have entailed EVIDENCE that science IS A PRIVILEGED knower of the universe

you have given neither
thus my post is not refuted

I have backed up my claims with sources from books and scientists

you have done neither
thus my post is not refuted
ArgentStorm

Con

Pro argues that I have not refuted his thesis. He did not dispute my initial interpretation of his thesis, which indicates that it was correct. My interpretation of his thesis, as I have demonstrated in P5 of the last round, is simply a restatement of solipsism. That is: the insufficient precision of language prevents us from "knowing" the universe. Epistemological solipsism states that we cannot know the world. All we have, in either case, is our mental construction of our own experiences. Since we cannot "know", if Pro is correct, then we cannot prove. As pro has accepted the burden of proof, if he is correct, he cannot fulfill his obligation, and pro has lost. If pro is incorrect and, as I have argued, words can accurately express the ideas necessary to accurately represent the universe through the creation of new words to represent novel and innovative ideas, then Pro has lost. In either event, pro has lost.

It is also worth noting that Pro has introduced no actual evidence of his own, instead relying on his original conjecture appeal to authority. As he has introduced no proof to support this conjecture beyond said appeal, he has necessarily failed in his obligation to prove his point.

Vote Con.
Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by Enji 3 years ago
Enji
It's plausible that both are Colin Leslie Dean.
Posted by Ragnar 3 years ago
Ragnar
Pretty sure bits of pro's argument were copied from: http://brainmeta.com...
Posted by ArgentStorm 3 years ago
ArgentStorm
I apologize for the repost. My mobile hit a patch of poor reception and was acting up.
Posted by ArgentStorm 3 years ago
ArgentStorm
Bohr's statement does nothing but show that Bohr himself felt constrained. Relying on it as "evidence" is nothing but an appeal to authority. Your other supporting quotes actually harm your argument. That operationalism works is evidence that words can, in fact, sufficiently construe ideas when their definitions (through the use of operational) are constrained to one meaning. All operatiomalism does is remove extraneous alternative definitions with which one could get confused. Regardless, you should have disputed my initial interpretation of your argument (rather than just my conclusions) if you felt I had it wrong. If you want to argue here, however, perhaps I should bring your attention to the fact that you presented no actual arguments yourself; merely outlining the topic of the debate (copied directly from your linked file) and claiming that I was wrong or fallaciously claiming that I had not addressed your material does not, in itself, constitute an argument. Nor do tangentially related appeals to authority. Personally, however, I would prefer we allow the voters to decide how the debate went than squabble in the comments section.
Posted by ArgentStorm 3 years ago
ArgentStorm
Bohr's statement does nothing but show that Bohr himself felt constrained. Relying on it as "evidence" is nothing but an appeal to authority. Your other supporting quotes actually harm your argument. That operationalism works is evidence that words can, in fact, sufficiently construe ideas when their definitions (through the use of operational) are constrained to one meaning. All operatiomalism does is remove extraneous alternative definitions with which one could get confused. Regardless, you should have disputed my initial interpretation of your argument (rather than just my conclusions) if you felt I had it wrong. If you want to argue here, however, perhaps I should bring your attention to the fact that you presented no actual arguments yourself; merely outlining the topic of the debate (copied directly from your linked file) and claiming that I was wrong or fallaciously claiming that I had not addressed your material does not, in itself, constitute an argument. Nor do tangentially related appeals to authority. Personally, however, I would prefer we allow the voters to decide how the debate went than squabble in the comments section.
Posted by shakuntala 3 years ago
shakuntala
Con says deans thesis is nothing but solipsism because dean argues man cannot know the universe because of the limitations of language
"Science loses its privileged place at the centre of the universe as a privileged knower"

this is a ridiculous and fallacious conclusion
just because someone say they cant know the universe
that does not make them a solipsist
when
Neils Bohr say language constrain their knowledge of knowing the universe

Bohr said "The very words physicists use to describe reality constrain their knowledge of it and scientists in every field will one day encounter this barrier to human understanding." A. Wick, The Infamous Boundary, Birkhauser, Berlin, 1995 p.39

are you saying he is a solipsist
what rot how ridiculous

and even if dean is propounding solipsism
that does not in of itself refute his thesis
if solipsism is untenable

we are still left with Bohrs statement
"The very words physicists use to describe reality constrain their knowledge of it and scientists in every field will one day encounter this barrier to human understanding."

which show deans thesis is correct
"Science loses its privileged place at the centre of the universe as a privileged knower"
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 3 years ago
Ragnar
shakuntalaArgentStormTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Argument to con: Pro stabbed himself in the foot with terrible presentation, how difficult to read his was, impacts one of three DDO measurements for an argument vote. Simple formatting would have fixed most of this (better indicators of when something is a quote for example). Plus the whole having to wait for con to explain what pro was talking about, was detrimental. Sources tied: Pro claims he has sources from a bunch of real scientists, yet what he has is in fact just spam; were they numbered and connected to the points in his argument, this would be another case (plus this is the internet, a link is more useful since no one is going to look up those books). con's limited sources were however not quite enough to tip things significantly in his favor (everything but argument voted not merely for one side being a little better).
Vote Placed by JustinAMoffatt 3 years ago
JustinAMoffatt
shakuntalaArgentStormTied
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Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: Note: Argentstorm... meet Shakuntala... as I see you already have. I'm almost absolutely certain he's a bot. I am certain that he has no interest in debating really. Most of his debates are advertising erotic poetry. Go figure. In the future, I'd recommend staying away from debates (and debaters) which are unclear or poorly conducted. Regardless, welcome to DDO. My RFD: Conduct- I didn't appreciate the blatant lying on Pro's part about sources. Nor did I like the misquoting of Con. However, I almost didn't give the point to Argent when I saw the comments. Arguing in the comments section is NOT allowed. Those who do it lose my respect very quickly. It is poor sportsmanship. S/G- Pro... doesn't seem to know of grammar's existence. Args- Con BARELY won this point. His argument that even if Pro was right, then he was wrong, was clever. It sufficed. However, I would've recommended fleshing out the arg that language is living. Sources- A wiki/Scribd are not reliable sources