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*To*: <ArtSippo@aol.com>, <dinosaur@usc.edu>*Subject*: Re: Disparaging Popper*From*: "philidor11" <philidor11@snet.net>*Date*: Mon, 13 Nov 2000 20:53:44 -0500*References*: <5d.33612c9.27414839@aol.com>*Reply-to*: philidor11@snet.net*Sender*: owner-dinosaur@usc.edu

<By definition,this means depending in large part on inductuve reasoning and on statistical analysis of data. Quite bluntly, even Aristotle knew that this was fallacious 2400 years ago... Bayesianism is more to their liking becasue it commits the probabalistic fallacy: what is likely to be true MUST be true. This elevates their conjectures to dogma and gives their opinions absolute authority in science.> and from your other posting: <In both cases [inductive as in experimental sciences and deductive as in historical sciences] one can only have confidence about scientific theories within certain limits of probability.> I think you're saying that statistical probability analysis does not yield 'truth' about reality, but can be used to evaluate hypotheses. To paraphrase (sorry if I'm mis-stating), if certainty is measured by statistical confidence, 100% certainty is not possible. But if that's true, then in fact no scientific theory can refute or preclude the accuracy of any alternative theory. (I'm using the word theory in place of hypothesis on purpose.) One theory may be only more likely than another based on arguable criteria. That proposition is troublesome. The original book review said: <The whole point of science is to provide a trustworthy guide to the future, not a series of hopeful guesses. Hacohen recommends Popper's critical rationalism over the poststructuralist relativism that dominates so much of the modern academy. But, behind the stylistic differences, there is little to choose between the two philosophies, for both deny that it is possible to identify the truth.> Someone arguing that 'truth' is tentative and subjective and socially derived would not be inconvenienced by a confidence-based approach, no? Thanks!

**References**:**Re: Disparaging Popper***From:*ArtSippo@aol.com

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