This is a commonplace analysis of Descartes & critique of the whole 
epistemological tradition that came out of this. However, the disavowal 
of scientific realism is childish. Speaking of childish, It's worth 
contemplating the symbiosis between Rosa's juvenile Wittgensteinianism 
and sectarianism. He differs from Henry Ford in declaring that, not 
history, but all philosophy, is bunk. And if this doesn't show you that 
the British far left--if that's what he is--is not at the end of its 
rope, what does?

Now I'm reminded that I need to take a look at Plekhanov & see if he's 
as bad as I'm told he is.

On 12/30/2010 10:10 AM, c b wrote:
> That project was exemplified in Descartes' Meditations, and it laid
> two demands on any account of knowledge and the means to knowledge,
> demands that set the standard and defined the adequacy of any account.
> There had been urgent reasons for making those demands but the reasons
> were historical rather than philosophical and came from the
> individualistic model of humanity that played such a pivotal role in
> the era's project of eliminating feudalism's remnants in thought and
> social institutions, and the project of justifying the conceptions and
> arrangements that were replacing them. That story needs to be
> elaborated, and will get some elaboration in the next chapter. What is
> important here is that those demands have been accepted since without
> serious critique or examination of alternatives.
> The first of the demands, describable as a "democratic" or
> "individualistic' one, was that a method be found that was available
> to each separated individual to apply privately and severally in the
> search for knowledge. The second, relating to the knowledge thus
> found, was that the method would lead all who conscientiously applied
> it to the same, objective and timeless true view of things.
> ^^^^^^^^^^
> CB: This point on "individualistic" method is a good one. This is how
> I define positivism.
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