I really think it is the right attitude, Norman. Now a problem occurs when people take *unconsciously* some idea for granted. A typical case concerns the "mind-body problem". I do not count the number of "scientists" I met who believe it is a false problem. When you dig a little bit you realize those scientists take for granted Aristotle theory of mind/substance (or even a caricature of it), which is not only in contradiction with comp but is in contradiction even with known empirical facts. So, not only we should be skeptical in front of authoritative argument, but we must be aware that we have, all of us, inherit such arguments from our parents and even from the whole evolution. Descartes systematic doubt procedure is always welcome in this setting. All this has given me more reason to "interview the lobian machine" which has the advantage of being "evolution-free". Well I can imagine John Mikes will be skeptical about that too!

But, please Norman, don't hesitate to comments posts by saying things like "that is jargon for me", or "could you please recall the definition of ..", or "could you find a simpler argument for ...". As a teacher I know that some students does not always dare to ask questions which they fear to be ridiculous, but no *question* can ever be considered as ridiculous. Only answers can!

Bruno


Le 04-juil.-05, à 15:02, Norman Samish a écrit :

Bruno, Stathis et al,
What you say is clearly true. It's as though expertise in one field convinces some people, often those in charge surrounded by sycophants, that anything they say must be true. This is deplorable because these aberrant
statements undermine all the true statements they have made.
Just because Einstein or Marchal or Samish says it's so doesn't make it so. That's hard to accept. That means that everything I'm told I have to personally reason through in order to accept it - I can't accept things at face value - if I do I make mistakes. (I make mistakes in any case, but try
to minimize them!)
I hope that contributors to this list will keep this in mind. If you want to convince me of something, please make your argument convincing - include references, avoid jargon. I can't accept it just because you say
so.
Norman
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
----- Original Message -----
From: "Bruno Marchal" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "Stephen Paul King" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Cc: <everything-list@eskimo.com>
Sent: Monday, July 04, 2005 1:23 AM
Subject: Re: How did he get his information?



Le 03-juil.-05, à 06:55, Stephen Paul King a écrit :

Charlatan, maybe...

I have discovered that *many* scientist can be serious in a field and
very bad or even charlatan in another field.
It is certainly a reason to be skeptic of all authoritative arguments.

Bruno


http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/


http://iridia.ulb.ac.be/~marchal/


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