death of the mind.

dan michaels feedbackdroids at
Wed Jul 21 21:04:39 EST 2004

lesterDELzick at (Lester Zick) wrote in message news:<40fe845a.65162551 at>...

> >> Behaviorism is not science but speculative philosophy. What makes
> >> it speculative is its primary tenet, the absence of mind and mental
> >> effects, is not subject to experimental validation or invalidation.
> >> 
> >
> >Adler has made exactly the same argument.
> >=================

> Of course he is incorrect. All real sciences have experimentally
> validated foundations. That's what makes them science. In the 20th
> century many experimentally validated foundations tend to have a lot
> of speculative nonsense superimposed on them, quantum effects and
> relativity for example.But they always have experimentally determinate
> results on which to base their claims to science. 

And, of course, new week's experiments cause the theories to undergo
wholescale revisions. 20th-C physics is the prime example of this.

> I think what Wolf actually meant in saying "Neither can any other
> science" is that interpretive superstructures imposed on scientific
> foundations cannot be validated experimentally. However if this is the
> case, I don't see any way to get from sciences of animal training to
> behaviorism's absence of mind and mental effects either inferrentially
> or experimentally. In other words behaviorism's absence of mind and
> mental effects is not only speculative, it's a non sequitor and cannot
> follow from its own scientific foundations. That makes it nonsense.
> Regards - Lester

In commenting specifically about such matters, Adler had the following
to say in Intellect, Mind Over Matter, 1990, pg X.

"... Metaphysical materialism ... has two obvious defects. The first
is that it has its foundation in a negative proposition that has never
been proved and never can be. In other words, it rests on the
unprovable postulate or assumption that nothing immaterial does or can
exist. That assumption may be true. Making it is not an error.
Asserting it ... dogmatically as an established truth ... however, not
as something that may be assumed, 'is' a serious error, a culpable
mistake to be avoided ...."

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