X-Message-Number: 10220
Date: Wed, 12 Aug 1998 07:28:03 -0700
From: Rand Simberg <>
Subject: More Incompleteness

Bob Ettinger wrote:

>But to see the failure of the point made by Mr. Simberg 
>(and Mr. Delaney etc.), we don't need any really sophisticated 
>argument. Basically, advocates of the "rational" approach 
>(which includes almost everyone in almost every practical 
>situation) are simply saying that you have the best chance 
>(or your prediction has the best chance) if you allow yourself 
>to be guided by experience (and if you are honest and thorough 
>and competent in your evaluation of experience).

But this begs the question, "best chance" of *what*?  If your most
fundamental goal is to get into a Christian heaven, science and rationality
do nothing to aid you in that.   If you accept them, they may demonstrate
to you that your goal is wrong, but in that case, you've then changed your
values.  The point is that values are not provable or derivable, they are
intrinsically axiomatic.  Goedel proved that some things are unprovable,
and, uncomfortable though it may seem to those whose religion is
rationalism (I fall into this category myself), this seems like an obvious
result to me.
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