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Bill Whittle/PJTV has a message just for us...

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Primetime Posted: Sun, Nov 4 2012 10:59 AM

Go figure something like this would be what gets me to finally make a post...

 

 

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Autolykos replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 11:21 AM

His first "fact" is that "either Mitt Romney or Barack Obama will be the President of the United States of America". That is not a fact, as it hasn't happened yet. It's highly inaccurate of him to present it as though it were a fact. Something tells me that he doesn't understand this, so I'm not going to accuse him of being intentionally dishonest. I hope that one day he comes to realize that predictions about the future are not facts.

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Wheylous replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 11:46 AM

Would you say it's a fact that the sun will "rise" tomorrow?

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gotlucky replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 11:59 AM

Bill Whittle has had some okay videos on occassion, but I had to give this up at the 3:00 mark. I appreciate that he understands that it's a matter of principle to not vote for Obama or Romney, but there were too many fallacies for it to be worth watching.

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Clayton replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 11:59 AM

Wow, what a joke. He attempts to refute public choice theory with "it takes many raindrops to make a river"?

a) It is a fact that either Romney or Obama will be President. But the assumption of the video is that this fact matters more than any other fact, such as the long-term viability of third-party politics or public education. Ron Paul has said it many times: this is a battle over ideas. The electoral battle is only useful insofar as it helps us win the battle of ideas. Voting for Romney is practically irrelevant but the key issue is that it does nothing to further the battle of ideas while it does lend yet more legitimacy to the system.

b) "Jesus - er, American soldiers - died to give you your vote." Well, I think that's a ridiculous romanticization of the facts. There are, perhaps, a small core of committed ideologues within the military at any given time but the idea that we have a vote because everyone who ever died in an American war "gave their life" so that "I could have a vote" is ridiculous. Furthermore, it assumes (here we go with the assumptions again) that democracy and freedom are identical. That is, we often hear the line that American soldiers died to give us our freedom. Even if this is true, it doesn't follow that they died to give us an ineffective, phony vote between identical candidates.

c) Spending/cutting promises. Bush made all the same promises and more in 2000. He then proceeded to reign over record-setting, blockbuster Federal budgets including massive increases in Medicare entitlements. While this was the point where I finally "saw the light", the fact is that a brief look at the history of Republican Presidents since WWII has been a consistent record of blockbuster Federal spending sold with a sweet song of "limited government". The Republican gig is up.

d) Electoral corruption. The corruption in the electoral process also goes way back. But the root problem here is not the corruption, it's the ridiculous scale of the US government. We have a single governing body making monolithic decisions and pronouncements that affect 300 million people equally. Perhaps marijuana should be neither legal nor illegal everywhere in the US... perhaps the right answer is that it is legal in some States and illegal in others, depending on the attitudes and circumstances of people in those respective States. But Federal monolith results in an absurd, sanitized monoculture where every aspect of life must be put to a vote and all 300 million of us must agree to do it The One Right Way.

e) Whittle has weird-looking eyes and exudes the general aura of a used-car salesman.

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Malachi replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 12:04 PM
Wheylous:

Would you say it's a fact that the sun will "rise" tomorrow?

I would not. I would say its a likely prediction, and given that "catastrophic" large scale planetary collisions are not unheard of, I would even say its not 100% that the sun will rise tomorrow. However, "tomorrow" could be defined in terms of "the sun rising" at which point "the sun will rise tomorrow" becomes an a priori fact.
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Autolykos replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 12:11 PM

I agree with Ninja Malachi.

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gotlucky replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 12:12 PM

Autolykos:

His first "fact" is that "either Mitt Romney or Barack Obama will be the President of the United States of America". That is not a fact, as it hasn't happened yet. It's highly inaccurate of him to present it as though it were a fact. Something tells me that he doesn't understand this, so I'm not going to accuse him of being intentionally dishonest. I hope that one day he comes to realize that predictions about the future are not facts.

Wheylous:

Would you say it's a fact that the sun will "rise" tomorrow?

Ah, I love this forum. Only here could we change from a highly fallacious video by Bill Whittle into a philosophical discussion into the nature of facts about the future.

My take: Autolykos is right in that the future hasn't happened yet, so there can be no facts (state of affairs) about the future. However, we can say, given all our assumptions about the sun, earth, and physics, that it is a fact that the sun will rise tomorrow. So the question is are our assumptions correct?

In terms of the election, if we assume that the polls are correct, that the vast majority of Republicans will vote for Romney, that the vast majority of the Democrats will vote for Obama, etc., then it is a fact that either Obama or Romney will be elected POTUS. So the question is, are our assumptions correct? I would think so.

It's kind of like this: There are 300 million sheep, and most are all looking to elect a leader. If 150 million don't vote, 70 million vote for Wolf A, 70 million vote for Wolf B, and the remaining 10 million vote for X and Y, then it is a fact that either Wolf A or B will become the leader of the sheep.

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Neodoxy replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 12:17 PM

Every time someone says that conservatism stands for personal freedom, a baby cries.

At last those coming came and they never looked back With blinding stars in their eyes but all they saw was black...
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Malachi replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 12:21 PM
I would even say its fact that Mitt Romney will be "elected" president and the voters are mostly irrelevant. Theyre smoke. Romney was picked by the power elites almost a year ago, and there has been a deliberate effort to make him palatable to the mainstream liberal crowd in order to legitimise his "victory" (actually coronation) because their default position is to worship obama. Even nicki minaj endorsed romney.
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Autolykos replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 12:37 PM

gotlucky:
My take: Autolykos is right in that the future hasn't happened yet, so there can be no facts (state of affairs) about the future. However, we can say, given all our assumptions about the sun, earth, and physics, that it is a fact that the sun will rise tomorrow. So the question is are our assumptions correct?

Unfortunately, I think you're equivocating over the meaning of "fact" in the above. I think it would be accurate to say that, given what we know, it seems certain that the sun will rise tomorrow. But that's in no way an existent state of affairs - it's a probabilistic statement.

gotlucky:
In terms of the election, if we assume that the polls are correct, that the vast majority of Republicans will vote for Romney, that the vast majority of the Democrats will vote for Obama, etc., then it is a fact that either Obama or Romney will be elected POTUS. So the question is, are our assumptions correct? I would think so.

Again, I think you're making a probabilistic statement. I completely agree that it seems virtually certain that either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney will win the election. But that doesn't make it a fact (i.e. an existent state of affairs).

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Autolykos replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 12:47 PM

Malachi:
I would even say its fact that Mitt Romney will be "elected" president and the voters are mostly irrelevant. Theyre smoke. Romney was picked by the power elites almost a year ago, and there has been a deliberate effort to make him palatable to the mainstream liberal crowd in order to legitimise his "victory" (actually coronation) because their default position is to worship obama.

I think the president is basically a figurehead, at least when it comes to the things that really matter to the establishment: the empire and all its trappings. Then again, the whole establishment viewpoint is self-reinforcing, so it seems highly unlikely that anyone who would seriously challenge the status quo would be able to get anywhere near a position to meaningfully do so (at least within the system itself). With that said, the whole election basically boils down to which marketing approach is favored by "the masses" (i.e. those who aren't part of the establishment). Really, it's like being offered the same product hidden by two different kinds of packaging.

Malachi:
Even nicki minaj endorsed romney.

Clearly she must hate black people.

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Clayton replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 12:53 PM

+1 Neo

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What I'm saying is that using modus ponens, Q is a fact if P is true: It is the case that if P, then Q. So there are two questions, is P true, and if it is, does it entail Q? I agree with you that if Q hasn't happened, it cannot be a fact, as it is not the case that Q. I'm not saying that it is a fact that either Romney or Obama will be POTUS. I'm saying that we could say that given X, Y, and Z, it is a fact that either Romney or Obama will be President.

If you flip a coin, it is a fact that it will be either heads or tails. It hasn't happened yet, so it is not a fact that it is either heads or tails. But if you do flip a coin, then it is a fact that it will be either one of those results. Of course, we are also assuming that it cannot land and balance on its edge. That's how I see the POTUS election. Maybe it is the case that a coin could land and balance on its edge, and maybe it is the case that Ron Paul will win (or any 3rd party candidate), but if we assume it isn't possible, then the coin will either land on heads or tails, and the future POTUS will be either Romney or Obama.

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Malachi replied on Sun, Nov 4 2012 1:24 PM
@Autolykos

I think the president is basically a figurehead, at least when it comes to the things that really matter to the establishment: the empire and all its trappings.
thats true but the elites are humans (or reptilians) and want a figurehead that is pleasing to them in various ways. Lost of little things Pres. Obama has done pissed them off, because Obama is from a different worldview. They were surprised at the amount of public support he was able to generate and made a calculated bet that it would be better to use an unknown wo had popular support to get things done that wouldnt have been possible with a mainstream politician. One of the reasons Obama the candidate was so attractive was that he was untainted, all the other democrats had voted for irak and afgh, he wasnt in the senate at the time. He was the multiracial grey man and everyone was able to see in him what they wanted. The elites saw a cover man for a mad power grab, that came with some baggage. It was a calculated risk, and worth the gamble, but they are done with him. The evidence for this is ephemeral, and ?quantish, but its there. Look at Bill Clinton. Rhodes scholar, he inducted Obama into the elites working level in ?2008 at the bilderbergs in a four hour hotel meeting. Now he is "campaigning" for O, telling everyone how much he is hated in washington, meanwhile he says "Romney did a lot of good work at bain capital." Obama could win and then he would be a force, the elites would renegotiate or push for impeachment. The Obamas know all of this and that is why Michelle has been lining up work in the fashion industry for when they leave the wh.
Then again, the whole establishment viewpoint is self-reinforcing, so it seems highly unlikely that anyone who would seriously challenge the status quo would be able to get anywhere near a position to meaningfully do so (at least within the system itself).
the political system is polycentric and agents of the state exist in a mix of legally enforceable hierarchy and lateral anarchy wirh customary trappings. The chicago machine rode Obama to power, and he has different friends and favorites than the old-school heavy hitters in and behind the bureaucracy. If that werent the case, they would never have revealed the enormous duplicity inherent in the political system by deliberately running an anti-war platform. I firmly believe that Obama intended to end the wars, but when he was elected he was briefed on why that wouldnt happen.
With that said, the whole election basically boils down to which marketing approach is favored by "the masses" (i.e. those who aren't part of the establishment). Really, it's like being offered the same product hidden by two different kinds of packaging.
the products are different. But its usually like ford vs chevy. In this case its like a new ford vs a ragged out kia.
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gotlucky:
What I'm saying is that using modus ponens, Q is a fact if P is true: It is the case that if P, then Q. So there are two questions, is P true, and if it is, does it entail Q? I agree with you that if Q hasn't happened, it cannot be a fact, as it is not the case that Q. I'm not saying that it is a fact that either Romney or Obama will be POTUS. I'm saying that we could say that given X, Y, and Z, it is a fact that either Romney or Obama will be President.

I still think you're using two different meanings for the word "fact" with the above. The first meaning is "something that has already happened". The second meaning is "something that is logically consistent with a given set of assumptions".

gotlucky:
If you flip a coin, it is a fact that it will be either heads or tails. It hasn't happened yet, so it is not a fact that it is either heads or tails. But if you do flip a coin, then it is a fact that it will be either one of those results. Of course, we are also assuming that it cannot land and balance on its edge. That's how I see the POTUS election. Maybe it is the case that a coin could land and balance on its edge, and maybe it is the case that Ron Paul will win (or any 3rd party candidate), but if we assume it isn't possible, then the coin will either land on heads or tails, and the future POTUS will be either Romney or Obama.

But in the real world, such things are still possible. It's even possible that the coin won't land at all - that it will get destroyed along with everything else on Earth when the Vogons replace it with a hyperspace bypass.

Furthermore, if you assume that a flipped coin will necessarily either land on heads or land on tails, then to say that it will either land on heads or land on tails is entirely tautological. That doesn't make it a fact, however (as I understand the term in this context).

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Autolykos:

I still think you're using two different meanings for the word "fact" with the above. The first meaning is "something that has already happened". The second meaning is "something that is logically consistent with a given set of assumptions".

I'm using "fact" to mean "something that is the case". It is a fact that the video in the OP is 7:28 in length. I might claim that the video is long. It is not a fact that it is long, because that is a value. But it is a fact that I think it is long.

I agree with you that it is not a fact that Romney or Obama will be president, as it hasn't happened yet. However, I do think we can say that it is the case that either Romney or Obama will be president if X. In other words, it is a fact that either one will be POTUS if X.

Autolykos:

But in the real world, such things are still possible. It's even possible that the coin won't land at all - that it will get destroyed along with everything else on Earth when the Vogons replace it with a hyperspace bypass.

Furthermore, if you assume that a flipped coin will necessarily either land on heads or land on tails, then to say that it will either land on heads or land on tails is entirely tautological. That doesn't make it a fact, however (as I understand the term in this context).

I would think that it is contingent upon certain criteria. The fact that a coin, when flipped, will either land on heads or tails is contingent upon certain things, such as the coin not being snatched out of the air before it lands or the Earth being destroyed by Vogons. 

Anyway, I did some reading about this stuff, and it looks like there's more to a fact than it simply being "something that is the case", and there seems to be plenty of disagreement among philosophers as to what should constitute a fact. To me, I think it makes sense to just stick with something simple like "something that is the case". It helps me make sense of the world, but it looks like philosophers make even more distinctions between "facts" and "states of affairs", and they don't all agree with each other. They obviously find that further distinctions help them make sense of the world, so I can't say if other people will find how I use the word to be useful, but I think my claims are consistent with my definition.

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Incredible how people get the same old crap every time there's an election, and yet there's still hope.

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gotlucky:
I'm using "fact" to mean "something that is the case". It is a fact that the video in the OP is 7:28 in length. I might claim that the video is long. It is not a fact that it is long, because that is a value. But it is a fact that I think it is long.

I agree with you that it is not a fact that Romney or Obama will be president, as it hasn't happened yet. However, I do think we can say that it is the case that either Romney or Obama will be president if X. In other words, it is a fact that either one will be POTUS if X.

As I see it, the question then is whether something is the case empirically or logically. So to use your definition of "fact", I think we can distinguish between empirical facts and logical facts. If you're saying that the proposition "either Romney or Obama will be elected president" follows logically from one or more assumptions, then that's a logical fact (using your semantics) but not an empirical fact. Does that make sense? I'm not saying your definition of "fact" is wrong, of course, but it's certainly different from the one I'm most comfortable with using.

gotlucky:
I would think that it is contingent upon certain criteria. The fact that a coin, when flipped, will either land on heads or tails is contingent upon certain things, such as the coin not being snatched out of the air before it lands or the Earth being destroyed by Vogons.

Are you essentially saying here that, if a coin lands on one of its faces after being flipped, it will therefore land either heads-side up or tails-side up? Using your semantics, I'd call that a logical fact but not an empirical fact. I just think it's useful to distinguish between logical and empirical facts, so as not to get them mixed up.

gotlucky:
Anyway, I did some reading about this stuff, and it looks like there's more to a fact than it simply being "something that is the case", and there seems to be plenty of disagreement among philosophers as to what should constitute a fact. To me, I think it makes sense to just stick with something simple like "something that is the case". It helps me make sense of the world, but it looks like philosophers make even more distinctions between "facts" and "states of affairs", and they don't all agree with each other. They obviously find that further distinctions help them make sense of the world, so I can't say if other people will find how I use the word to be useful, but I think my claims are consistent with my definition.

To me, arguing about what constitutes a fact is either arguing about the application of a definition (i.e. its logical conclusions) or about which definition to apply in the first place. The second argument, however, can't be resolved, because it's a matter of semantics, and semantics are logically arbitrary.

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The video is complete bullshit.

People think that american elections are legitimate.

But in the eyes of the austrians, ancaps, and others who are awakened; we must sit here and watch as the country destroys itself under the guise of democratic freedom.

 

“Since people are concerned that ‘X’ will not be provided, ‘X’ will naturally be provided by those who are concerned by its absence."
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Whoa, where did Picard go? 

Autolykos:

As I see it, the question then is whether something is the case empirically or logically. So to use your definition of "fact", I think we can distinguish between empirical facts and logical facts. If you're saying that the proposition "either Romney or Obama will be elected president" follows logically from one or more assumptions, then that's a logical fact (using your semantics) but not an empirical fact. Does that make sense? I'm not saying your definition of "fact" is wrong, of course, but it's certainly different from the one I'm most comfortable with using.

I think what you are saying makes sense. By the way, it seemed that your definition was "existent state of affairs". If that is the case, do you mean physically existent instead of logically existent?

Autolykos:

Are you essentially saying here that, if a coin lands on one of its faces after being flipped, it will therefore land either heads-side up or tails-side up? Using your semantics, I'd call that a logical fact but not an empirical fact. I just think it's useful to distinguish between logical and empirical facts, so as not to get them mixed up.

Makes sense to me.

Autolykos:

To me, arguing about what constitutes a fact is either arguing about the application of a definition (i.e. its logical conclusions) or about which definition to apply in the first place. The second argument, however, can't be resolved, because it's a matter of semantics, and semantics are logically arbitrary.

True, but some definitions help us make better sense of the world (I know, I know, better is subjective). Some distinctions might be more useful to professional philosophers than to someone like me.

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gotlucky:
Whoa, where did Picard go?

He went to his Ready Room where he got some tea, Earl Grey, hot. Don't worry, Number One's in control of the bridge.

gotlucky:
I think what you are saying makes sense. By the way, it seemed that your definition was "existent state of affairs". If that is the case, do you mean physically existent instead of logically existent?

Yes. To me, "state of affairs" implies physically/empirically existent. Sorry if that wasn't clear to you.

gotlucky:
True, but some definitions help us make better sense of the world (I know, I know, better is subjective). Some distinctions might be more useful to professional philosophers than to someone like me.

Right, basically we each find some definitions to be more useful than others. It's just that the definitions that one person finds more useful may differ from those that another person finds more useful.

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Autolykos:

Yes. To me, "state of affairs" implies physically/empirically existent. Sorry if that wasn't clear to you.

Yeah I wasn't sure, as I do think of abstract objects as existing in logical space, even though they don't have a concrete existence.

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Would you say it's a fact that the sun will "rise" tomorrow?

This is a context question.  You can't throw a "fact" out in a void.

In the sense where Whittle says it's a fact X or Z will be elected, if there is any sense one can make that intelligible - that is where the fact is at. 

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vive la insurrection:
This is a context question.  You can't throw a "fact" out in a void.

In the sense where Whittle says it's a fact X or Z will be elected, if there is any sense one can make that intelligible - that is where the fact is at.

Each of two people (e.g. GotLucky and myself) uses a different definition of "fact". Which definition is the correct one?

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Malachi replied on Mon, Nov 5 2012 8:39 AM
If I may be so bold, I would say that vive's meaning is that the "correct" definition is the contextual one-the definition that Whittle intended, which the audience must interpret in a meaningful way.
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Malachi:
hats true but the elites are humans (or reptilians) and want a figurehead that is pleasing to them in various ways. Lost of little things Pres. Obama has done pissed them off, because Obama is from a different worldview. They were surprised at the amount of public support he was able to generate and made a calculated bet that it would be better to use an unknown wo had popular support to get things done that wouldnt have been possible with a mainstream politician. One of the reasons Obama the candidate was so attractive was that he was untainted, all the other democrats had voted for irak and afgh, he wasnt in the senate at the time. He was the multiracial grey man and everyone was able to see in him what they wanted. The elites saw a cover man for a mad power grab, that came with some baggage. It was a calculated risk, and worth the gamble, but they are done with him. The evidence for this is ephemeral, and ?quantish, but its there. Look at Bill Clinton. Rhodes scholar, he inducted Obama into the elites working level in ?2008 at the bilderbergs in a four hour hotel meeting. Now he is "campaigning" for O, telling everyone how much he is hated in washington, meanwhile he says "Romney did a lot of good work at bain capital." Obama could win and then he would be a force, the elites would renegotiate or push for impeachment. The Obamas know all of this and that is why Michelle has been lining up work in the fashion industry for when they leave the wh.

I don't think there was ever any danger of Obama not "going with the program". He's been an establishment man through and through his entire career. I'm sure he's more liberal on social issues, like gay marriage and abortion, but those are surface issues. They have nothing to do with the things that really matter to the establishment. So his and other politicians' stances on those issues are part of the packaging/advertising, nothing more.

Malachi:
the political system is polycentric and agents of the state exist in a mix of legally enforceable hierarchy and lateral anarchy wirh customary trappings. The chicago machine rode Obama to power, and he has different friends and favorites than the old-school heavy hitters in and behind the bureaucracy. If that werent the case, they would never have revealed the enormous duplicity inherent in the political system by deliberately running an anti-war platform. I firmly believe that Obama intended to end the wars, but when he was elected he was briefed on why that wouldnt happen.

I don't think the political system is all that polycentric - at least not when it comes to the heart of it (the military-industrial complex). People there seem to be of largely like mind. Even the establishment in general has a lot of common ideology. That is, I don't see a whole lot of diversity of opinion within the establishment. The Chicago machine may have helped get Obama elected to the Senate to begin with, but from what I've read, Obama's had establishment connections essentially from birth.

Here's why I don't think Obama was briefed after being elected on why the wars wouldn't end: he initially promised to vote against the telecom-amnesty bill, but then turned around and voted for it. That was before he was elected.

Malachi:
the products are different. But its usually like ford vs chevy. In this case its like a new ford vs a ragged out kia.

Why do you say that? And who do you think is the new Ford and who the ragged-out Kia?

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Each of two people (e.g. GotLucky and myself) uses a different definition of "fact". Which definition is the correct one?

The one that makes the most intelligible sense within the framework of the pertinent information at hand.  That's for you to decide. Do the hermeneutic, make it work - if you can't move along.

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Autolykos replied on Mon, Nov 5 2012 10:43 AM

Are you claiming there's such a thing as an objectively correct definition?

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Voluntaryism Forum

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In so much as a fact exists within a set up framework, it has to be in that framework - or it is nonsense.

In so much as it exists within a logical space, it must exist with in a logical space.

 

But that is beside the point,

there should be no need to analyize wether or not it is inevitable X or Y are going to be elected.  If you can make sense of that statement (I can), than it works.  it meets a certain set of expectations and actions within a relevant framework to me.  This shouldn't require much analyzing, in fact I doubt it can really have much at all.

"As in a kaleidoscope, the constellation of forces operating in the system as a whole is ever changing." - Ludwig Lachmann

"When A Man Dies A World Goes Out of Existence"  - GLS Shackle

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