17 Feb

Certainty and ignorance

Statue of John Knox

Although I write about and am engaged with politics these days, I haven’t always held much in the way of political opinions.  The impetus for beginning an interest in it came from one conversation too many in which I was left silent with no opinion to give.  As it seemed to me – and which I now know to be naïve – the people whose opinions I heard tended to carry their views with a certainty and conviction I rarely had about anything.  Not knowing the details of political circumstances, I concluded these people were better informed than I was, so I generally felt no reason to interject or disagree with them.

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29 Aug

Truth and lies

Truth

On my way to work today I was thinking about abstract things, and I came across the interesting question of whether a statement is truthful if, only by the fact of saying it, it becomes true.  The example I was thinking of was the following: Imagine a person, me, and I want to go swimming with two beautiful girls (philosophy can be so enjoyable sometimes).  I ask one of them, Jane, “will you go swimming with me?” She replies, “I will, but only if Sarah comes with us.” So I go to Sarah and ask her the same question, and she replies, “I will, but only if Jane is coming too.”

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