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Enlightened Empiricism, Extensionalism and the Control of Operant Behavior

Neil W Rickert rickert+nn at cs.niu.edu
Wed Nov 3 15:08:38 EST 2004

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patty <pattyNO at SPAMicyberspace.net> writes:

> From [1] <http://www.philosophers.co.uk/cafe/phil_mar2004.htm>
>As an empiricist - one who thinks all knowledge claims are justified by 
>experience - Quine was committed to the role of sensory experience in 
>knowledge. But since a single mind has no fixed anchor to halt inner 
>experience from 'drifting', Quine argued that in a community, drift 
>would be arrested; we are not apt to drift in the same direction. Thus 
>publicly reinforced language - and not subjective ideas - could check 
>the tendency for drift. 'Safety in numbers' rather than subjective 
>certainty would provide Quine's key to knowledge.

>In other words (mine) enlightened empiricism draws the experiential 
>bubble [2] in a different place than classic empiricism draws it.  It 
>draws it out in the culture, not around the skin of the individual.  In 
>my opinion, a better cut.

I don't think I can agree with that.  After seeing yesterday's
election results, it sure seems as if more than half the voting
population is drifting way out into never-never land.

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