On Oct 7, 8:23 pm, Stathis Papaioannou <stath...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sat, Oct 8, 2011 at 10:48 AM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > On Oct 7, 7:10 pm, Stathis Papaioannou <stath...@gmail.com> wrote:
> >> On Sat, Oct 8, 2011 at 7:06 AM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> 
> >> wrote:
> >> >> If a motor neuron involved in voluntary activity fires where you would 
> >> >> not predict it would fire given its internal state and the inputs then 
> >> >> it is *by definition* acting contrary to physical law.
> >> > Every firing of motor neurons involved in voluntarily activity fires
> >> > where you would not predict, given that the internal state provides no
> >> > prediction and that the inputs are determined by the subject and
> >> > therefore unknowable to anyone outside of the subject.
> >> The internal state of the neuron determines its sensitivity to inputs.
> >> The internal state is complex but it includes things such as the
> >> membrane potential, the intracellular ion concentrations, the number,
> >> type and location of ion channels, to what extent the synaptic
> >> vesicles have filled with neurotransmitter, and multiple other
> >> factors. The inputs consist of every environmental factor that might
> >> potentially affect the neuron such as the extracellular ionic
> >> concentrations, pH, temperature, synaptic connections, concentration
> >> of neurotransmitter in the synapse, concentration of enzymes which
> >> break down neurotransmitter and so on.
> > Not one of those things determines whether or not a given neuron
> > associated with voluntary action will fire. It is the same thing as
> > talking about the drive shaft, CV boot, transmission, fuel line, spark
> > plugs, and paint job as determining when and where an automobile goes.
> > It's the same as saying that the TV remote control uses you to change
> > the channel instead of the other way around.
> Of course all the parts of the car determine how it will move! You can
> predict exactly what the car will do if you know how it works and you
> have the inputs.

What you are talking about is either tautological and obvious or
delusional. if I send you the owner's manual of my car, you can tell
me where I'm going to drive it tomorrow? So what are you talking
about? That if you observe a car turning, you can tell which way it's
turning or something?

>A model of the car, such as a car racing computer
> game, does not include the driver and the whole universe, as you seem
> to think, just the car.

A car racing computer game is not a model of a car unless it is played
by a user who is familiar with cars. A horse does not confuse the game
with an automobile. It's a red herring anyways. You still can't tell
where a real car is going to go unless you know where the driver is
going to steer it, and that is something which cannot be determined by
modeling the car or the driver's body, brain, neurons, ion channels,
or molecules. The same brain in the same body with the same neurons,
ion channels, or molecules can drive to the beach one day or the
mountains the next depending upon nothing but how they feel. You could
say that how they feel is a complex chain of events, but they would
not be only microcosmic events which could be modeled, any butterfly
wing in some part of the world could set off a chain of unpredictable
happenstance that ends up in the driver deciding to go somewhere
completely unexpected.

> >> If the neuron fires where
> >> consideration of these factors would lead to a prediction that it
> >> should not fire then that is by definition the neuron acting contrary
> >> to physical law.
> > There is no such thing as a factor which leads to a prediction of when
> > efferent nerves will fire. Even if you say that the subject is just
> > regions of the brain, it is still those regions, those tissues and
> > neurons which *decide* to fire as a first cause - without any
> > deterministic precursor that could ever be predicted with any degree
> > of accuracy without access to the private subjective content of the
> > decision process. Seeing a nerve fire doesn't tell you when it's going
> > to fire again, just as seeing a car make a left turn doesn't tell you
> > what direction it's going to turn after that.
> So a neuron fires in those regions of the brain associated with
> subjectivity where the biochemistry suggests it would not fire.

How many times do you need me to tell you that biochemistry does not
suggest whether such a neuron would fire? If I decide to move my arm,
whatever it is that is deciding *is* the firing of some group of
neurons. Biochemistry doesn't give you any insight as to whether your
ion channels are about to speak Chinese or English with a New Jersey
dialect. It's so wrong, it's not even wrong, it's just blanket denial
of ordinary reality. There's nothing I can say to you because you're
not listening or understanding what I mean at all.

> Ligand-activated ion channels open without any ligand present,

No, the ligand will always be present, because the electromagnetic
conditions change to attract, repel, bind, etc. The electromagnetic
conditions are the 3-p view of the 1-p sensorimotive intentions. They
are the same thing. Just as you have an interior world which others do
not experience directly when they look at the outside of your head,
but when you smile it's a consequence of a human feeling, which they
can make sense of in terms of their own feeling, and they may smile
back. In your view, the only possibility is that the mouth movements
of one person must cause the other person's mouth to move. It's a
catastrophic mechanization of the reality - which is a sensorimotive
semantic exchange through the natural language of human expression.
The material monism view disqualifies this simple truth a priori and
sticks it's head up it's theoretical ass to find some a-signifying
stupidity to justify it.

> perhaps an action potential propagates down the axon without any
> change in ion concentrations.

Again, not what I'm saying. The ion concentrations change because the
electromagnetic conditions of the ions change spontaneously.
Spontaneously. Spontaneously.

>That is what I call "contrary to
> physical laws".

You would be incorrect. Just Google it.


"these results show that spontaneous brain activity is more than
simply a physiological artifact; it helps account for some of the
variability in human behavior. In that sense, they argue for a greater
acceptance of the view that our brain may have some intrinsic activity
that's somewhat independent of sensory input. "


"The majority of functional neuroscience studies have focused on the
brain's response to a task or stimulus. However, the brain is very
active even in the absence of explicit input or output."

"On a more cellular level, MacLean and colleagues (2005) have
demonstrated the existence of spontaneous activity patterns that mimic
patterns evoked by thalamic stimulation."

"Spontaneous activity is widely seen in cultured neural networks.
However, the the exact mechanisms behind such activity is still
relatively unknown. "

The brain is buzzing 24/7 with spontaneous, fluctuating activity

"The brain is not a passive sensory-motor analyzer driven by
environmental stimuli, but actively maintains ongoing representations
that may be involved in the coding of expected sensory stimuli,
prospective motor responses, and prior experience. Spontaneous
cortical activity has been proposed to play an important part in
maintaining these ongoing, internal representations, although its
functional role is not well understood."

"Ongoing, intrinsic brain activity that is not task-related accounts
for the majority of energy used by the human brain."

These are just the low hanging fruit of a two Google searches. Can you
find even one contemporary citation of article suggesting that these
spontaneous electrochemical events are actually not spontaneous? That
they are predicted by passive, leaf falling, chemotactic gradient
following inevitables? If you can't, you are obligated to say
something to the effect of "I stand corrected".

>You don't agree, so you must have some other idea of
> what a neuron would have to do to qualify as firing contrary to
> physical laws. What is it?

9. There is no physical law which relates to the timing of spontaneous
neuron firings. Your question is a loaded question fallacy. I do have
ideas of how spontaneous neurological activity arises through
correlation with sensorimotive semantic experiences, but they are not
necessary to prove that your opinion is an uninformed and unsupported,
unscientific, Wild Ass Guess based on pure prejudice and nothing more.
Sorry to escalate this, I don't mean to target you personally, I just
haven't thought of any other way to defeat your fanatical dogmatism.
I've tried politely explaining my views, I've tried giving common
sense examples (TV pixels vs TV programs, cars vs drivers, video
drivers vs monitors, salmon swimming upstream, and many more I'm
sure), I've tried exposing where the materialist worldview goes wrong
(cannot account for qualia, feelings of free will, purpose of
consciousness or life, etc), so I am open to suggestions of what to
try next.


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