Cognizance

It has just occurred to me that what we need to do is to teach our computers how to make choices based on nothing more than what they have before them. Rational or irrational, logical or illogical matters not just so long as they have a choice and they are able to make it.

Our Limitations

When you get right down to it the link just below really can’t lead us to true understanding.

Source: Postmodernism – Wikipedia

For we haven’t the ability to truly understand given just how limited we are. We’re just not that smart, nor can we ever be that smart. And it’s not just a matter of how big our brains can get, but in how efficient they can be.

There will always be matters we will never be able to comprehend, and that’s simply the end of the matter. You get right down to it postmodernism is about how we can’t know completely and perfectly considering what we can use to know. To make this simple postmodernism comes down to a matter of doubt, a matter of skepticism. And skepticism can never be a matter of faith or belief for we can never be absolutely right in any sense of the word.

It is never a matter of whether a subject must exist, but a matter of whether it exists or not. And when something does exist it has nothing to say about us as human beings. The fact that there are great apes native to North America just is, and what you feel about them doesn’t make a damn bit of difference. Hell, as far as I know we may even have a species of hyena native to North America, with nothing that prevents such an animal from existing. Being able to levitate say 3 feet off the ground would make a huge difference in our lives, and change things dramatically.

For what is affects us and can’t help affecting us. Given how rare they would appear to be bigfoots don’t have much affect on us. But should they start to become comfortable associating with us much as bobcats, red foxes, and raccoons have, then our world would dramatically change.

But getting back to the thrust of this post keep in mind that we will never understand perfectly or even totally. There you have my thinking on the matter.

My Understanding?

Source: What is Scientism? | American Association for the Advancement of Science

At the link above you will come across a fairly good description of scientism, as the author understands it. You’ll find others and not all will agree with him. I for instance don’t. Not entirely and not as he does.

Scientism is one of those words who’s meaning, who’s description depends a lot on our experience in the subject of science. It depends a lot on how we see science and on how we were taught science to be. For my part I was taught to see science in a certain way, and to apply it in a certain way.

As I see it science isn’t really a thing, but a way of discovering and learning. Science isn’t really about knowledge, but more a way of learning. A way of discovery and how to verify and confirm that what you have learned is true. Science is a matter of faith, faith in our ability to verify and learn, but not faith in science per se, but in how the scientific method can and will lead to learning.

In short science is not a matter of fact, but more a matter in finding out. A matter or learning from observation, trial, and experience what is going on in the world. In a recent photo on the web we saw a raccoon sleeping in a man’s living room. When a commenter said that raccoons are dangerous she was right. But at the same time she neglected to point out that sometimes some animals can be so comfortable around humans they really have no problem with them, and may well come to adopt a particular human as part of his family.

This is where science comes in, for by using science we are able to accept that things don’t have to be the way we were told they should be. That there are things not dreamt of in our philosophy.

As I see it scientism is the belief that we can take the pronouncements of scientists on faith, that they are matters of faith and not to be discounted just because they are matters of revelation and authority. In scientism science consists of a series of hoary old prophets stomping down off a mountain bearing stone tablets bearing the Word of God upon them. As far as I can see scientism is science as religious belief, and that’s not how science works.

And as far as I can see science and the scientific method can be applied to most anything, even things that we assume can’t be, for as we learn of them we will learn just how they could work if they indeed were. For we are an animal that needs to understand, or to think we understand even when our understanding is wrong. For that gives us a basis on which we can learn of our errors and correct them. Science gives us the tools we need to discover and correct our mistakes. Scientism denies us those tools and insists that we take what we know as holy writ. Science is a pair of reading glasses making our world clearer. Scientism is gouging out the eyes because what you see, albeit oh so dimly and blurred, offends you.

So that is my understanding, how I see scientism. My understanding is necessarily blurred, incomplete, but at least it’s a start and one I can improve upon. What is your understanding, can it be improved, and can you let it be improved?

Adventures Suck

Here’s what I need to do:

  1. I need to get my room cleaned up.
  2. I need to put stuff into storage.
  3. I need to prepare for surgeries, fortunately minor ones.
  4. I need to keep taking my meds on schedule.
  5. I need to contact an adult day care center where I won’t be so dang isolated.

Now the first two you locals can help me with. But I can’t really pay you with anything more substantive than chatter and gossip. Or maybe an adventure using an impromptu system. Or, I can teach you Dangerous Journeys using the Mythus variant.

In short we could have a Bob Con, named after Robert P. Goodwin, where visitors and friends would gather in his bedroom at The Frog Pond and gab about stuff. Contact me for my phone# and address. Balboa Park is just 2 blocks east of here.

Keep me off the street.

They Live

Source: Home – Sasquatch Genome Project

I’ve decided I’m going to make this very plain, there is a great ape living in North America, and the link above provides evidence for this.

The problem is not with the evidence provided, but with Ketchum’s interpretation of it. She says it’s proof that the sasquatch is a hybrid of Man and some unknown ape. She says this because it would appear that they found gorilla DNA in the samples she tested. Ah, doctor, that’s not how it works.

Now I’m not what you’d call literate when it comes to reading the results she provides, but somebody much more competent than I came to this conclusion. Namely that what the specimens showed was a lot or gorilla DNA. This leading me to the conclusion that the sasquatch of North America is descended from a common ancestor of gorilla and human.

Unfortunately her mistake regarding what the sasquatch is unfortunately led certain other parties to conclude that the animal does not exist. Indeed cannot. I’ve forgotten what the logical fallacy is called, but assuming that being wrong in one area means you have to be wrong in everything. That’s not how it works. What her work did do is demonstrate the existence of a great ape living in North America, and which may even be native to this continent assuming that it is a separate species instead of a sub-species of yeti.

But there are those bigfoot scares, because to them only humans can be bipedal apes. And that when it comes to the sasquatch you can rely on the authorities.

I say, “Bull shit.”

When anybody says anything that is counter to the available evidence they can’t be relied on. That’s what it comes down to, and what it means is that some self-identified scientists can only be called creationists where this subject is concerned. They talk like creationist, they think like creationists, they act like creationists. And I say it’s damn well time they damn well stopped.

There is nothing supernatural about bigfoots, they’re just damn apes.

Stress Sucks

It doesn’t help that Dave is acting like a fundie. He’s being rude, ignoring evidence and arguments, and engaging in senseless insults. But besides that I’ve got an appointment today with a new shrink, and I’m fretting about what’s going to happen. Having to deal with one is enough, but two?

Here’s hoping at least my new shrink works out.