On 17 September 2010 13:33, 1Z <peterdjo...@yahoo.com> wrote:

> Compounds aren't postulated as some separate set  of entities--they
> are just set theoretic constructs put of what does exsit. H2O is not
> distinct from the two H's and the O.

That's exactly my point.  Think about it.

David

>
>
> On 26 Aug, 17:37, David Nyman <david.ny...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> I should stress, again, I'm not personally committed to this view - it
>> seems indeed highly problematic - but it is what the recipe says.
>> Now, just to emphasise the point, when I say it's a hard thing to do
>> this imaginatively, I mean that it isn't permissible to "look back"
>> from this reductionist-god's eye view and continue to conjure familiar
>> composite entities from the conjectural base components, because
>> reductionism is a commitment to the proposition that these don't
>> exist.
>
> not at all. reductionism is a commitment to the idea that
> all higher level entities are compounds and nothing but compounds,
> wholes
> which are exactly the sums of their parts.
>
>
>>Whatever composite categories we might be tempted to have
>> recourse to - you know: molecules, cells, bodies, planets, ideas,
>> explanations, theories, the whole ball of wax - none of these are
>> available from this perspective.  Don't need them.  More rigorously,
>> they *must not be invoked* because they *do not exist*.  They don't
>> need to exist, because the machine doesn't need them to carry all the
>> load and do all the work.
>
> OTOH, they must exist because if you have two hydrogens and an oxygen,
> you inevitably have the compound H2O. You also have many other
> compounds which are not
> dreamt of in our philosophy. the set of compounds is basically the
> powerset of the set of basic entities. there may not be any objective
> facts about what is a "true" compound, but the powerset
> unproblematically includes everything we conventionally regard as a
> compound as a powerset
>
>> Now, many people might be prompted to object at this point "that's not
>> reducing, that's eliminating" as though these terms could be kept
>> distinct.  But I'm arguing that reductionism, consistently applied, is
>> inescapably eliminative.  The hypothesis was that base-level events
>> are self-sufficient and consequently must be granted metaphysical (and
>> hence "physical") reality.  Nothing else is required to explain why
>> the machine exists and works, so nothing else need - or indeed can non-
>> question-beggingly - be postulated.
>
> Compounds aren't postulated as some separate set  of entities--they
> are just set theoretic constructs put of what does exsit. H2O is not
> distinct from the two H's and the O.
>
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