On 10/4/2013 2:14 PM, LizR wrote:
On 5 October 2013 06:53, meekerdb <meeke...@verizon.net <mailto:meeke...@verizon.net>> wrote:


    He comes to this because he's *defined* "Knightian uncertainty" as radical
    unpredictability without randomness.


I don't see why it doesn't entail randomness, especially if it comes from quantum fluctuations during the big bang.

I found that a little puzzling too. But I happen to be reading Scott's book "Quantum Computing Since Democritus" too; and in it he gives more of an explanation. He notes that there are some things which are undetermined but which it doesn't seem possible to assign a probability distribution to, more precisely there are quite different probability distributions that seem equally applicable. He discusses a few examples. The Doomsday argument is one that is probably known to everyone on this list. He notes that one could estimate a probability using a self-sampling assumption or a self-indicial assumption and they produce different answers. His general conclusion is that there are undetermined things that are not random. I think he would put Bruno's FPI in that class. And apparently that's what he thinks initial conditions of the universe could be.

Incidentally, I highly recommend the book.


But even if it doesn't, it still doesn't seem to me to lead to "free will worth 
having".

I agree with Dennett there: Determinism can provide all the freedom worth 
having.

Brent

The cosmic background radiation seems more likely to have it (if anything does) than humans, the latter being made of atoms that have been knocking around on Earth for billions of years amd surely losing any correlation with "initial uncertainty" in the process. So does the CMB have more free will than we do?


    I agree that doesn't seem very significant, e.g. in terms of public policy 
for
    example.   Nietzsche says "free will" is an invention of the priestly class 
in order
    to justify judgement, guilt, and punishment - all social tools.


Good point! I tend to agree with Neitzsche on that one (would you Adam and Eve 
it? :)

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