The metrical-projection fallacy

1.) You go to a booth where a guy is selling different varieties of six packs. He can ask you which six you want, but he can’t ask you which number you want. This six is not that one, but this number is.

2.) This fact remains when one thing measures another. If you pull out your Einsteinean measuring rods and measure off six units from this end of the room to that, the rods and the room are the same number but not the same six.

3.) When we define things by how they are measured we understand them in the way that they are the same as their measure, i.e. we consider them in an abstract, logical genus, like understanding apples and oranges as fruit.  So long as all we’re counting, selling or storing is fruit then apples are oranges are pears. Again, if you mean an apple and orange are the same in the way you are choosing to compare them, then there is nothing to being one that isn’t the whole being of the other. But when we compare things as measure and measured it is logically necessary that what we leave off is the nature of the thing in its specific, concrete identity. In this sense, the specific concrete identity of a thing must be left off when we understand it as measured. Note that we aren’t leaving it off provisionally in the hope to get to it later, we’re leaving it off in principle.

4.) All the operational definitions of science are defined by measurement. It is meaningless to talk about what some reality is apart from some procedure that specifies how you are going to observe and quantify it (cf. The first chapter of the hard science textbook which, following the demands of national curriculum standards, explains the difference between accuracy and precision.)

5.) Science requires an in-principle abandonment of attaining things in their specific, concrete being.

6.) Lets’s say you go out to your lab and, with careful metrical precision or statistical probability, prove something about wave functions, elements, universal grammar, etc.. The following moves are fallacious: (a) to look at the phenomena again and see it as nothing but a projection of wave functions, elements, energy, or (in language) as a working out of universal grammar or (b) to object that some method cannot get a hold of the phenomena because it cannot specify an operational procedure to capture their reality. Both moves are category mistakes. Both are the same as objecting to the claim that horses and lobsters are different since, if they were, they would need something that made them different from animals. Animals are animals, aren’t they? This is a weaponized variant of Whitehead’s fallacy of misplaced concreteness.

7.) “But how can you deny that horses and lobsters both reduce to animals? Wait, maybe horses and lobsters supervene on animality! Or perhaps we will defend a horse-animal substance dualism!” Behold, all the joyful discourse you can look forward to after you define the physical metrically and then do either 6(a) or (b).

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: