On Saturday, March 9, 2013 9:11:11 PM UTC-5, stathisp wrote:
> On Sun, Mar 10, 2013 at 11:06 AM, Craig Weinberg 
> <whats...@gmail.com<javascript:>> 
> wrote: 
> >> In a deterministic universe it is determined whether the thief will 
> >> stop if someone yells at him. However, neither the person yelling nor 
> >> the thief knows for sure whether he will stop or not. 
> > 
> > 
> > What difference would it make to them if neither the person yelling nor 
> the 
> > thief can control whether or not they are yelling or stealing? I don't 
> know 
> > whether or not a puddle in the gutter will dry out or not overnight, but 
> why 
> > would that generate some sort of interest to me? 
> In the normal use of the word "control" a deterministic system can 
> control things. For example, an automatic pilot can control the plane. 

An automatic pilot only controls the plane to the extent that it extends 
human intentions to control the plane. The automatic pilot can just as 
easily be set to crash the plane into a mountain as soon as possible and it 
won't know the difference or care.

> >> Furthermore, it 
> >> is not possible to know for sure if the thief will stop or not even 
> >> with a perfect model of his brain, due to the nature of classical 
> >> chaotic systems. 
> > 
> > 
> > It doesn't matter because in a deterministic universe it would be 
> impossible 
> > to care whether the thief would stop or not. 
> It's not impossible to care. I could care if I have the winning 
> lottery ticket if I know it has been drawn but not yet revealed. 

Only because you live in a universe where winning the lottery is meaningful 
for you because it represents the opportunity to amplify your own free 
will. If there were only determinism, winning the lottery could not 
possibly matter to you.

> >> > When a suspect pleads insanity, they are saying precisely that the 
> brain 
> >> > physics is relevant to the question of responsibility for a crime. An 
> >> > expert 
> >> > witness who can establish that you have a tumor in an area of your 
> brain 
> >> > which is associated with impulse control will have a very good chance 
> of 
> >> > convincing a judge that brain physics is indeed relevant. 
> >> 
> >> Mentally ill people don't have different brain *physics*. 
> > 
> > 
> > Splitting hairs. Using English words in a nonsense order may technically 
> be 
> > *English* but it is still a language problem. 
> Not at all, the fundamental physics may be the same but in one case a 
> person can assess the situation and change his behaviour while in the 
> other case he can't. The automatic pilot is broken. 

Under what circumstances is a an automatic pilot legally responsible for 
its actions? Can an automatic pilot be put in prison for failing at a 
critical moment? Why not?

> >> If the brain 
> >> is deterministic in a well person it is deterministic in a mentally 
> >> ill person as well. The difference is that the mentally ill person may 
> >> not be able to (deterministically) respond to certain situations in 
> >> the way a well person will (deterministically) respond to them. Judges 
> >> are usually quite intelligent people and I expect that most of them 
> >> are aware that everything in the world must be either determined or 
> >> random, but they still make their judgements despite this. 
> > 
> > 
> > No judge could make any judgment against a person if they really 
> believed 
> > that everything must be determined or random. That would mean that their 
> > judgments would also be deterministic or random, so that they would not 
> be a 
> > judge at all, but rather a pawn of "inevitable and necessary 
> consequences of 
> > antecedent states of affairs." 
> > 
> > Judgment is impossible under determinism. 
> In that case judges are deluded about making judgements - but it 
> doesn't deter them.  

Your invisible floating castle has plumbing problems.


> -- 
> Stathis Papaioannou 

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