As an accompaniment to the translation into English of Louis Althusser's 'Letter to the Central Committee of the PCF, March 18th, 1966', this note provides the historical and theoretical context necessary to understand Althusser's 'anti-humanist' interventions into French Communist Party policy decisions during the mid-1960s. Because nowhere else in Althusser's published writings do we see as clearly the political stakes involved in his philosophical project, nor the way in which this project evolved from a 'theoreticist' pursuit into a more (...) practical one, the note also argues that the letter is of importance to Althusser scholars, to historians of Marxist thought, and to those interested in the relevance of Althusser's work to contemporary Marxist philosophy. (shrink)
The role of the Research Ethics Committee (REC) in the design, conduct and dissemination of scientific research is still evolving and many important questions remain unanswered. Hence, the aim of this paper is to address some of the uncertainty that exists around the role and responsibilities of RECs and to discuss some of the controversy that exists over the criteria that RECs should follow when evaluating a research proposal. The discussion is organised around five of the major roles currently (...) performed by RECs when assessing proposals in the biomedical sciences. It will be shown that these five roles need to be critically evaluated and reassessed. The five roles addressed are: assessing the legitimacy and validity of the informed consent process, second, conducting a comprehensive risk/benefit analysis, third, assessing the validity of a research proposal, fourth, ensuring that researchers observe the social norms, values, customs, traditions and laws that prevail in the community or jurisdiction in which the research will be conducted and finally, monitoring the research project as it unfolds and providing an ongoing advisory and consultancy service to both new and experienced researchers. In reassessing the role of the REC, this paper concludes with a set of general recommendations for RECs. These provide some guidance on the minimum criteria that should be followed when RECs evaluate proposals. These guidelines will be beneficial for new and experienced members of REC, and will help to make the process a more objective, efficient and standardised process. The guidelines will also be beneficial for researchers in the biomedical sciences who are preparing proposals for ethical review. (shrink)
: In June 2002, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) approved draft recommendations concerning preparation for potential biological terror attacks that utilize the smallpox virus. ACIP recommends against both mandatory and voluntary vaccination of the general public. The present paper examines the moral and political considerations both for and against each of the general public vaccination options considered by the ACIP in the context of the state's authority over vaccination for the purposes of protecting public health. (...) Although it is clear that compulsory mass vaccination is not justified at this time, the issues surrounding voluntary vaccination are more complex. Should smallpox vaccination prior to an outbreak be made available to the general public? The paper concludes that the vaccine should not be made available at this time. This conclusion, however, is based upon contingent features of current circumstances, which would change once an outbreak occurred. In the event of a terror-related outbreak of smallpox, the general public's access to voluntary vaccination would become justified, even in areas beyond where the outbreak has occurred. (shrink)
Contemporary philosophers and psychologists seek the roots of ethically sound forms of behavior, including altruism and a sense of fairness, in the basic structure of cooperative action. I argue that recent work on cooperation in both philosophy and psychology has been hampered by what I call “the mutualistic paradigm.” The mutualistic paradigm treats one kind of cooperative situation—what I call a “mutualistic situation”—as paradigmatic of cooperation in general. In mutualistic situations, such as the primeval stag hunt described by Brian (...) Skyrms, every partner in a cooperative action has to do his part in order for the action as a whole to succeed. But many familiar cooperative situations—for example, serving on an academic committee—do not have this structure. Contemporary philosophers and psychologists are right that thinking about cooperation can shed light on how and why ethically sound behavior happens in human beings. But the deep connections between ethics and cooperation only come into view once we have a richer conception of our capacities for cooperation than the mutualistic paradigm provides. (shrink)
The contribution of healthcare ethics committee (HEC) members to HECs is fundamental. However, little is known about how HEC members view clinical ethics. We report results from a qualitative study of the moral psychology of HEC members. We found that contrary to the existing Kohlberg-based studies, HEC members hold a pragmatic non-expert view of clinical ethics based mainly on respect for persons and a commitment to the patient’s good. In general, HEC members hold deflationary views regarding moral theory. (...) Ethical principles are not abstract foundations but the expression of moral commitments to patients that pre-exist awareness of moral theory. Emotions and proximity to patient sufferance fundamentally shape the views of HEC members on clinical ethics. Further work at the intersection of clinical ethics and qualitative research could bring to the foreground lay perspectives on moral problems that may differ from bioethics expert views. (shrink)
Central to Nicolas Malebranche?s theodicy is the distinction between general volitions and particular volitions. One of the fundamental claims of his theodicy is that although God created a world with suffering and evil, God does not will these things by particular volitions, but only by general volitions. Commentators disagree about how to interpret Malebranche?s distinction. According to the ?general content? interpretation, the difference between general volitions and particular volitions is a difference in content. General volitions (...) have general laws as their content and particular volitions have particular contents. The ?particular content? interpretation holds that all of God?s volitions have particular contents. The difference between general and particular volitions is whether the content of the volition is in accordance with the laws that God has established. A proper interpretation of this distinction is essential to understanding Malebranche?s theodicy, as well as his account of occasionalism and God?s causal activity in the world. In this paper, I defend the ?particular content? interpretation of the distinction. (shrink)
Bertie Ahern, the incumbent Taoiseach or Prime Minister of Ireland, was elected to a third term in the general election of 24 May 2007. While Ahern's party, Fianna F il, was able to retain its governing coalition, the level of support of some of the other parties changed dramatically. Fine Gael, the principal opposition party, saw its number of seats in the parliament, D il ireann, increase by nineteen. Some of the minor parties did less well than expected or (...) compared to previous elections. Only the Greens maintained their six representatives. As a result, they were rewarded with a share in the new government. This election suggests that, while Irish society is changing rapidly, the political system is changing more slowly and subtly. This article examines the election results in terms of the fate of the political parties and focuses on one constituency, Tipperary South, to illustrate trends in Irish electoral politics. (shrink)
The purpose of this study was to assess the degree of editorial independence at a sample of medical journals and the relationship between the journals and their owners. We surveyed the editors of 33 medical journals owned by not-for-profit organizations (“associations”), including 10 journals represented on the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (nine of which are general medical journals) and a random sample of 23 specialist journals with high impact factors that are indexed by the Institute (...) for Scientific Information. The main outcome measures were the authority to hire, fire, and oversee the work of the editor; the editor’s tenure and financial compensation; control of the journal’s budget; publication of material about the association; and the editor’s perceptions about editorial independence and pressure over editorial content. Of the 33 editors, 23 (70%) reported having complete editorial freedom, and the remainder reported a high level of freedom (a score of ≥8, where 10 equals complete editorial freedom and 1 equals no editorial freedom). Nevertheless, a substantial minority of editors reported having received at least some pressure in recent years over editorial content from the association’s leadership (42%), senior staff (30%), or rank-and-file members (39%). The association’s board of directors has the authority to hire (48%) or fire (55%) the editor for about half of the journals, and the editor reports to the board for 10 journals (30%). Twenty-three editors (70%) are appointed for a specific term (median term =5 years). Three-fifths of the journals have no control over their profit, and the majority of journals use the association’s legal counsel and/or media relations staff. Stronger safeguards are needed to give editors protection against pressure over editorial content, including written guarantees of editorial freedom and governance structures that support those guarantees. Strong safeguards are also needed because editors may have less freedom than they believe (especially if they have not yet tested their freedom in an area of controversy). (shrink)
The authors report the first Italian experience of a research ethics committee (REC) audit focused on the evaluation of the REC’s compliance with standard operating procedures, requirements in insurance coverage, informed consent, protection of privacy and confidentiality, predictable risks/harms, selection of subjects, withdrawal criteria and other issues, such as advertisement details and justification of placebo. The internal audit was conducted over a two-year period (March 2009–February 2011) divided into quarters to better value the influence of the new insurance coverage (...) regulation that came into effect in March 2010 (Ministerial Decree of 14 July, 2009) and expand the requirements to safeguard participants in clinical drug trials including other critical items as information and consent and the risks to benefits ratio. Out of a total of 639 REC’s opinions and research studies, 316 were reviewed. Regarding the insurance policy requirements, Auditor/REC non-compliance occurred only in one case. The highest number of Auditor/REC non-compliance was in regard to information and consent, which should have incurred a suspended decision rather than a favorable opinion. This internal audit shows the importance and the difficulty of the review process. For this reason, specific courses for members of the research ethics committee and for those who aspire to become auditors will be provided. There may also be efforts to improve the standard operating procedures already in place. (shrink)
Dewey blurs the distinction between poetry and philosophy. This is clearest in his aesthetics where he affirms Matthew Arnold’s dictum that “poetry is criticism of life.” The maxim, though, fails to say “how poetry is a criticism.” The role of art in general is imagining and creating images of the actual beyond the possible that (from a moral perspective) ought to exist. One can derive an ought from an is if one understands the is of poetic possibility. Dewey asserts (...) that “poetry teaches us as friends and life teach, by being, and not by express intent.” He affirms that it is “by way of communication that art becomes the incomparable organ of instruction.” Blurring the distinction between poetry and philosophy requires reconsidering the character—especially the moral character—of education as cultural criticism. (shrink)
I argue that contemporary liberal theory cannot give a general justification for the institution or practice of punishment, i.e., a justification that would hold across a broad range of reasonably realistic conditions. I examine the general justifications offered by three prominent contemporary liberal theorists and show how their justifications fail in light of the possibility of an alternative to punishment. I argue that, because of their common commitments regarding the nature of justification, these theorists have decisive reasons to (...) reject punishment in favor of a non-punitive alternative. I demonstrate the possibility of this alternative by means of a careful examination of the nature of punishment, isolating one essential characteristic—the aim to impose suffering—and showing how this characteristic need not guide enforcement. There is logical space for a forceful and coercive, yet non-punitive method of enforcement. This fact poses difficulties for many classical and contemporary justifications of punishment, but it poses particularly crippling problems for general liberal justifications. (shrink)
Some argue, following Bertrand Russell, that because general truths are not entailed by particular truths, general facts must be posited to exist in addition to particular facts. I argue on the contrary that because general truths (globally) supervene on particular truths, general facts are not needed in addition to particular facts; indeed, if one accepts the Humean denial of necessary connections between distinct existents, one can further conclude that there are no general facts. When entailment (...) and supervenience do not coincide it is only failure of supervenience, not failure of entailment, that carries ontological import. (shrink)
n his Lectures on the Histmy 0f Philosophy Hegel credits Rousseau with an cpoch-making innovation in the realm 0f practical philosophy, an innovation said to consist in thc fact that Rousseau is thc first thinker t0 recognize "the free will" as thc fundamental principle 0f political philosophy} Since Hcgcl’s 0wn practical philosophy is explicitly grounded in an account 0f thc will and its freedom, Hcgcl’s assertion is clearly intended as an acknowledgment 0f his deep indebtedness t0 R0usscau’s social and political (...) thought. What is not s0 clear, however, is how this indebtedness is t0 bc understood: What precisely docs it mean t0 say that the political theories 0f Hegel and Rousseau share the same first principlc? In this paper I intend t0 follow up 0n this interpretive suggestion 0f Hcgcl’s by claborating, much more explicitly than he himself docs, thc sense in which R0usscau’s political thought is founded 011 thc principle 0f the "frcc wiil." While accomplishing this task will put us in a better position t0 clarify thc obscurc philosophical strategy behind Hcgcl’s 0wn social theory, my primary interest here is t0 illuminate thc foundations 0f R0usscau’s political thought, especially its account 0f the connection between freedom and the general will. I argue that it is necessary t0 distinguish two ways in which Rousseau takes the general will t0 secure, or realize, thc freedom of individual citizens, namely, by functioning as an embodiment as well as a precondition of such freedom. Understanding both 0f these points will lead us t0 scc: that R0usscau’s thought rests 0n two distinct, though not incompatible, accounts 0f how citizens whose actions are constrained by thc general will are in fact subject 0nly to their 0wn wills and therefore free in their 0bcdience to thc general will. As we shall scc, these two accounts arc implicitly based upon distinct conceptions 0f political freedom. (shrink)
The paper presents an interpretation of the thinking behind the early Wittgenstein's "general form of the proposition." It argues that a central role is played by the assumption that all domains of discourse are governed by the same laws of logic. The interpretation is presented partly through a comparison with ideas presented recently by Michael Potter and Peter Sullivan; the paper argues that the above assumption explains more of the key characteristics of the "general form of the proposition" (...) than Potter and Sullivan suppose, including, in particular, its claim that the bases from which all other propositions are derived must be elementary propositions. (shrink)
Wittgenstein presents in the Tractatus a variable purporting to capture the general form of proposition. One understanding of what Wittgenstein is doing there, an understanding in line with the ‘new’ reading of his work championed by Diamond, Conant and others, sees it as a deflationary or even an implosive move—a move by which a concept sometimes put by philosophers to distinctively metaphysical use is replaced, in a perspicuous notation, by an innocent device of generalization, thereby dispersing the clouds (...) of philosophy that formerly surrounded the concept. By asking how Wittgenstein supposed his variable to work, and what work he imagined it was fit for, the paper questions the adequacy of that understanding. (shrink)
Written by leading philosophers and lawyers from the United States and the United Kingdom, this collection of original essays offers new insights into the doctrines that make up the general part of the criminal law. It sheds theoretical light on the diversity and unity of the general part and advances our understanding of such key issues as criminalisation, omissions, voluntary actions, knowledge, belief, reckelssness, duress, self-defence, entrapment and officially-induced mistake of law.
Newton’s immensely famous, but tersely written, General Scholium is primarily known for its reference to the argument of design and Newton’s famous dictum “hypotheses non fingo”. In the essay at hand, I shall argue that this text served a variety of goals and try to add something new to our current knowledge of how Newton tried to accomplish them. The General Scholium highlights a cornucopia of features that were central to Newton’s natural philosophy in general: matters of (...) experimentation, methodological issues, theological matters, matters related to the instauration of prisca sapientia, epistemological claims central to Newton’s empiricism, and, finally, metaphysical issues. For Newton these matters were closely interwoven. I shall address these matters based on a thorough study of the extant manuscript material. (shrink)
The conclusions derived by Keynes in his Treatise on Probability (1921) concerning induction, analogical reasoning, expectations formation and decision making, mirror and foreshadow the main conclusions of cognitive science and psychology.The problem of weight is studied within an economic context by examining the role it played in Keynes' applied philosophy work, The General Theory (1936). Keynes' approach is then reformulated as an optimal control approach to dealing with changes in information evaluation over time. Based on this analysis the problem (...) of inductive justification, from a societal perspective, is not, What can we rationally believe will occur in the economic future, given our past experiences? but Can we make the future so as to attain specific economic goals with practical certainty? An answer requires that restrictions be placed on the methodological individualist approach and the acceptance of a restricted holistic approach. (shrink)
An examination of time as featured in the General Theory of Relativity, which supercedes Einstein’s Special Theory, serves to rekindle the issue of the existenceof absolute time. In application to cosmology, Einstein’s General Theory yields models of the universe featuring a worldwide time which is the same for all observers in the universe regardless of their relative motion. Such a cosmic time is a rough physical measure of Newton’s absolute time, which is based ontologically in the duration of (...) God’s being and is more or less accurately recorded by physical clocks. (shrink)
According to one interpretation of Leviathan, Hobbes sinks the democratic argument in favour of government by representation into his own argument in favour of absolute rule. This paper argues that Kant in turn sinks Hobbes' argument for coercive political authority into Rousseau's construction of the volonté générale . Why does Kant reject Rousseau's argument in favour of popular sovereignty; why does he revert to Hobbes' endorsement of a coercively unifying political authority? The paper examines the different responses given by Hobbes, (...) Rousseau, and Kant to the problem of political unity and unified political decision-taking. While for Hobbes and Rousseau political unity must be empirically real - there must be an actual unifying authority - in Kant the idea of the general united will is a rational criterion of just lawmaking. For Kant, it is not the form of government that matters, but the manner of governing. (shrink)
What van Gelder calls the dynamical hypothesis is only a special case of what we here dub the general dynamical hypothesis. His terminology makes it easy to overlook important alternative dynamical approaches in cognitive science. Connectionist models typically conform to the general dynamical hypothesis, but not to van Gelder's.
The paper establishes the general structure of the inconsistent models of arithmetic of . It is shown that such models are constituted by a sequence of nuclei. The nuclei fall into three segments: the first contains improper nuclei; the second contains proper nuclei with linear chromosomes; the third contains proper nuclei with cyclical chromosomes. The nuclei have periods which are inherited up the ordering. It is also shown that the improper nuclei can have the order type of any ordinal, (...) of the rationals, or of any other order type that can be embedded in the rationals in a certain way. (shrink)
each associate, and be means of which each unites himself to all, obeying only himself and still remaining as free as before. [The Solution]: Each of us puts in common his person and his entire power under the supreme direction of the general will (la..
Using a scenario approach involving hypothetical moral decisions, the study aims to (1) compare managerial professionals' ethicality judgments with those made by the general public, and (2) ascertain the roles of perceived intensity (Jones, 1991) as well as perceived fairness of the moral issue in judgments of ethicality. While the two respondent groups made similar ratings on variables of moral intensity, fairness, and ethicality; the evaluation processes underlying their ethicality judgments were different. Empirically, the study has also established a (...) link between judgments of fairness and judgments of ethicality. (shrink)
This paper reorganizes and further develops the theory of partial meet contraction which was introduced in a classic paper by Alchourrón, Gärdenfors, and Makinson. Our purpose is threefold. First, we put the theory in a broader perspective by decomposing it into two layers which can respectively be treated by the general theory of choice and preference and elementary model theory. Second, we reprove the two main representation theorems of AGM and present two more representation results for the finite case (...) that "lie between" the former, thereby partially answering an open question of AGM. Our method of proof is uniform insofar as it uses only one form of "revealed preference", and it explains where and why the finiteness assumption is needed. Third, as an application, we explore the logic characterizing theory contractions in the finite case which are governed by the structure of simple and prioritized belief bases. (shrink)
The final two volumes, numbers IV and V, of the Oxford University Press edition of the Collected Works of Kurt Gödel - appeared in 2003, thus completing a project that started over twenty years earlier. What I mainly want to do here is trace, from the vantage point of my personal involvement, the at some times halting and at other times intense development of the Gödel editorial project from the first initiatives following Gödel’s death in 1978 to its completion (...) last year. It may be useful to scholars mounting similar editorial projects for other significant figures in our field to learn how and why various decisions were made and how the work was carried out, though of course much is particular to who and what we were dealing with. My hope here is also to give the reader who is not already familiar with the Gödel Works a sense of what has been gained in the process, and to encourage dipping in according to interest. Given the absolute importance of Gödel for mathematical logic, students should also be pointed to these important source materials to experience first hand the exercise of his genius and the varied ways of his thought and to see how scholarly and critical studies help to expand their significance. Though indeed much has been gained in our work there is still much that can and should be done; besides some indications below, for that the reader is referred to . (shrink)
This paper examines the perceived ethics of advertisers and the general public relative to three ethical concepts. Based on the survey findings, it can be concluded that with regard to the ethically-laden concepts of manipulation, exploitation, and deviousness, advertisers are perceptually as ethical as the general public. The research also clarifies some of the differences between ethics and Machiavellianism.
Background Japanese people have become increasingly interested in the expression and enhancement of their individual autonomy in medical decisions made regarding medical treatment at and toward the end of life. However, while many Western countries have implemented legislation that deals with patient autonomy in the case of terminal illness, no such legislation exists in Japan. The rationale for this research is based on the need to investigate patient's preferences regarding treatment at the end of life in order to re-evaluate advance (...) directives policy and practice. Methods We conducted a cross-sectional survey with 418 members of the general middle-aged and senior adults (aged between 40 and 65) in Tokyo, Japan. Respondents were asked about their attitudes toward advance directives, and preferences toward treatment options. Results Over 60% of respondents agreed that it is better to express their wishes regarding advance directives (treatment preferences in writing, appointment of proxy for care decision making, appointment of legal administrator of property, stating preferences regarding disposal of one's property and funeral arrangements) but less than 10% of them had already done so. About 60% of respondents in this study preferred to indicate treatment preferences in broad rather than concrete terms. Over 80% would like to decide treatment preferences in consultation with others (22.2% with their proxy, 11.0% with the doctor, and 47.8% with both their proxy and the doctor). Conclusion This study revealed that many Japanese people indicate an interest in undertaking advance directives. This study found that there is a range of preferences regarding how advance directives are undertaken, thus it is important to recognize that any processes put into place should allow flexibility in order to best respect patients' wishes and autonomy. (shrink)
Part of Keynes? 'struggle of escape from habitual modes of thought and expression' (Keynes 1960: viii) involves an implicit attempt to break with the methodology as well as the theory of the past. Unfortunately the rhetorical strategy Keynes adopted in The General Theoryblurred this attempt. As a result, it is only by examining both the methodology and rhetoric embedded in this work that it becomes possible to understand the book as a coherent whole. This paper demonstrates the validity of (...) taking such an approach. (shrink)
Kant identifies knowledge [Wissen], belief [Glaube], and opinion [Meinung] as our three primary modes of “holding-to-be-true” [Fürwahrhalten]. He also identifies opinion as making up the greatest part of our cognition. After a preliminary sketch of Kant’s system of propositional attitudes, this paper will explore what he says about the norms governing opinion and empirical hypotheses. The final section will turn to what, in the Critique of Pure Reason and elsewhere, Kant refers to as “General Applied Logic”. It concerns the (...) “contingent conditions of the subject, which can hinder or promote” good inquiry; and, though rarely mentioned in the secondary literature, it offers Kant’s methodological alternative to the traditional epistemological goal of finding “a sufficient and at the same time general criterion of truth”. (shrink)
Health research initiatives worldwide are growing in scope and complexity, particularly as they move into the developing world. Expanding health research activity in low- and middle-income countries has resulted in a commensurate rise in the need for sound ethical review structures and functions in the form of Research Ethics Committees (RECs). Yet these seem to be lagging behind as a result of the enormous challenges facing these countries, including poor resource availability and lack of capacity. There is thus an urgent (...) need for ongoing capacity and resource development in these regions in general, and in Africa in particular. Similarly, there is a need for research and initiatives that can identify existing capacity and funding and indicate the areas where this needs to be developed.This discussion paper argues that the Mapping African Research Ethics Capacity (MARC) project is a timely initiative aimed at identifying existing capacity. MARC provides a platform and tool on the Council on Health Research for Development's (COHRED) Health Research website (HRWeb), which can be used by RECs and key stakeholders in health research in Africa to identify capacity, constraints and development needs. MARC intends to provide the first comprehensive interactive database of RECs in Africa, which will allow for the identification of key relationships and analyses of capacity. The potential of MARC lies in the mapping of current ethical review activity onto capacity needs. This paper serves as a starting point by providing a descriptive illustration of the current state of RECs in Africa. (shrink)
The philosophical literature on time and change is fixated on the issue of whether the B-series account of change is adequate or whether real change requires Becoming of either the property-based variety of McTaggart's A-series or the non-property-based form embodied in C. D. Broad's idea of the piling up of successive layers of existence. For present purposes it is assumed that the B-series suffices to ground real change. But then it is noted that modern science in the guise of Einstein's (...)general theory poses a threat to real change by implying that none of the genuine physical magnitudes countenanced by the theory changes its value with time. The aims of this paper are to explain how this seemingly paradoxical conclusion arises and to assess the merits and demerits of possible reactions to it. (shrink)
The existence of a definite tangent space structure (metric with Lorentzian signature) in the general theory of relativity is the consequence of a fundamental assumption concerning the local validity of special relativity. There is then at the heart of Einstein's theory of gravity an absolute element which depends essentially on a common feature of all the non-gravitational interactions in the world, and which has nothing to do with space-time curvature. Tentative implications of this point for the significance of the (...) vacuum solutions in general relativity, and for the issue of quantising gravity, are briefly examined. (shrink)
The author finds no support for the claim that J. M. Keynes had severe reservations, in general, as opposed to particular, concerning the application of mathematical, logical and statistical methods in economics. These misinterpretations rest on the omission of important source material as well as a severe misconstrual ofThe Treatise on Probability (1921).
The numerical representations of measurement, geometry and kinematics are here subsumed under a general theory of representation. The standard theories of meaningfulness of representational propositions in these three areas are shown to be special cases of two theories of meaningfulness for arbitrary representational propositions: the theories based on unstructured and on structured representation respectively. The foundations of the standard theories of meaningfulness are critically analyzed and two basic assumptions are isolated which do not seem to have received adequate justification: (...) the assumption that a proposition invariant under the appropriate group is therefore meaningful, and the assumption that representations should be unique up to a transformation of the appropriate group. A general theory of representational meaningfulness is offered, based on a semantic and syntactic analysis of representational propositions. Two neglected features of representational propositions are formalized and made use of: (a) that such propositions are induced by more general propositions defined for other structures than the one being represented, and (b) that the true purpose of representation is the application of the theory of the representing system to the represented system. On the basis of these developments, justifications are offered for the two problematic assumptions made by the existing theories. (shrink)
Antinomicity is not necessarily dependent on negation; there is a more general conception of antinomicity based on the fundamental idea of opposition. To study this fact is indispensable to show first that truth and falsity are independent of assertion and negation. Then it can be seen that antinomies can be found everywhere, and that some single categories are in intrinsic opposition with themselves while others are opposed to one another in pairs. An antinomic ‘manifesto’ concludes the work.
Drawing on his investigation of over one hundred mid-Victorian British newspapers and periodicals, Alvar Ellegård describes and analyzes the impact of Darwin's theory of evolution during the first dozen years after the publication of the Origin of Species . Although Darwin's book caused an immediate stir in literary and scientific periodicals, the popular press largely ignored it. Only after the work's implications for theology and the nature of man became evident did general publications feel compelled to react; each social (...) group responded according to his own political and religious prejudices. Ellegård charts the impact of this revolution in science, maintaining that although the idea of evolution was generally accepted, Darwin's primary contribution, the theory of natural selection, was either ignored or rejected among the public. (shrink)
It is well-known that classical models of belief are not realistic representations of human doxastic capacity; equally, models of actions involving beliefs, such as decisions based on beliefs, or changes of beliefs, suffer from a similar inaccuracies. In this paper, a general framework is presented which permits a more realistic modelling both of instantaneous states of belief, and of the operations involving them. This framework is motivated by some of the inadequacies of existing models, which it overcomes, whilst retaining (...) technical rigour in so far as it relies on known, natural logical and mathematical notions. The companion paper (Towards a “sophisticated” model of belief dynamics. Part II) contains an application of this framework to the particular case of belief revision. (shrink)
: The President's Council on Bioethics has tried to make a distinctive contribution to the methodology of such public bodies in developing what it has styled a "richer bioethics." The Council's procedure contrasts with more modest methods of public bioethical deliberation employed by the United Kingdom's Warnock Committee. The practices of both bodies are held up against a backdrop of concerns about moral and political alienation, prompted by the limitations of moral reasoning and by moral dissent from state policy (...) under even the most democratic of governments. Although the President's Council's rhetoric is often scrupulously conciliatory, recurring features of its argumentative practice are regrettably divisive. They order these things better in Britain. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the `Lorentzian Pedagogy' defended by J.S. Bell in his essay ``How to teach special relativity'', and to explore its consistency with Einstein's thinking from 1905 to 1952. Some remarks are also made in this context on Weyl's philosophy of relativity and his 1918 gauge theory. Finally, it is argued that the Lorentzian pedagogy---which stresses the important connection between kinematics and dynamics---clarifies the role of rods and clocks in general relativity.
I look at the ‘flavour-oscillation clocks’ proposed by D. V. Ahluwalia and two of his arguments suggesting that such clocks might behave in a way that threatens the geometricity of general relativity (GR). The first argument states that the behaviour of these clocks in the vicinity of a rotating gravitational source implies a non-geometrical element of gravity. I argue that the phenomenon is best seen as an instance of violation of the ‘clock hypothesis’ and therefore does not threaten the (...) geometrical nature of gravitation. Ahluwalia’s second argument, for the ‘incompleteness’ of general relativity, involves the idea that flavour-oscillation clocks can detect constant gravitational potentials. I argue that the purported ‘incompleteness-establishing’ result is in fact one that applies to all clocks. It is entirely derivable from general relativity, does not result in the observability of the potential, and is not at odds with any of general relativity’s foundations. (shrink)
Throughout the medieval and modern periods, in various sacred and secular guises, the unification of all forms of knowledge under the rubric of ‘science’ has been taken as the prerogative of humanity as a species. However, as our sense of species privilege has been called increasingly into question, so too has the very salience of ‘humanity’ and ‘science’ as general categories, let alone ones that might bear some essential relationship to each other. After showing how the ascendant Stanford School (...) in the philosophy of science has contributed to this joint demystification of ‘humanity’ and ‘science’, I proceed on a more positive note to a conceptual framework for making sense of science as the art of being human. My understanding of ‘science’ is indebted to the red thread that runs from Christian theology through the Scientific Revolution and Enlightenment to the Humboldtian revival of the university as the site for the synthesis of knowledge as the culmination of self-development. Especially salient to this idea is science‘s epistemic capacity to manage modality (i.e. to determine the conditions under which possibilities can be actualised) and its political capacity to organize humanity into projects of universal concern. However, the challenge facing such an ideal in the twentyfirst century is that the predicate ‘human’ may be projected in three quite distinct ways, governed by what I call ‘ecological’, ‘biomedical’ and ‘cybernetic’ interests. Which one of these future humanities would claim today’s humans as proper ancestors and could these futures co-habit the same world thus become two important questions that general philosophy of science will need to address in the coming years. (shrink)
The paper compares ontic structural realism in quantum physics with ontic structural realism about space–time. We contend that both quantum theory and general relativity theory support a common, contentful metaphysics of ontic structural realism. After recalling the main claim of ontic structural realism and its physical support, we point out that both in the domain of quantum theory and in the domain of general relativity theory, there are objects whose essential ways of being are certain relations so that (...) these objects do not possess an intrinsic identity. Nonetheless, the qualitative, physical nature of these relations is in the quantum case (entanglement) fundamentally different from the classical, metrical relations treated in general relativity theory. (shrink)
Gilbert Harman has written: “Williamson‟s Knowledge and its Limits is the most important philosophical discussion of knowledge in many years. It sets the agenda for epistemology for the next decade and beyond” (Harman 2002, p. 417). Timothy Williamson‟s ground-breaking proposal is that knowing is “merely a state of mind”. In other words, for every proposition p “there is a state of mind being in which is necessary and sufficient for knowing p” (Williamson 2000, p. 21). When first advanced, Williamson‟s view (...) ran contrary to the general trend. The “standard view” (ibidem) was that “believing is merely a state of mind, but.. (shrink)
How can we reconcile two claims that are now both widely accepted: Kretschmann's claim that a requirement of general covariance is physically vacuous and the standard view that the general covariance of general relativity expresses the physically important diffeomorphism gauge freedom of general relativity? I urge that both claims can be held without contradiction if we attend to the context in which each is made.
In his general theory of relativity (GR) Einstein sought to generalize the special-relativistic equivalence of inertial frames to a principle according to which all frames of reference are equivalent. He claimed to have achieved this aim through the general covariance of the equations of GR. There is broad consensus among philosophers of relativity that Einstein was mistaken in this. That equations can be made to look the same in different frames certainly does not imply in general that (...) such frames are physically equivalent. We shall argue, however, that Einstein's position is tenable. The equivalence of arbitrary frames in GR should not be equated with relativity of arbitrary motion, though. There certainly are observable differences between reference frames in GR (differences in the way particles move and fields evolve). The core of our defense of Einstein's position will be to argue that such differences should be seen as fact-like rather than law-like in GR. By contrast, in classical mechanics and in special relativity (SR) the differences between inertial systems and accelerated systems have a law-like status. The fact-like character of the differences between frames in GR justifies regarding them as equivalent in the same sense as inertial frames in SR. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to present in a uniform way the commutator theory for k-deductive system of arbitrary positive dimension k. We are interested in the logical perspective of the research — an emphasis is put on an analysis of the interconnections holding between the commutator and logic. This research thus qualifies as belonging to abstract algebraic logic, an area of universal algebra that explores to a large extent the methods provided by the general theory of deductive (...) systems. In the paper the new term ‘commutator formula’ is introduced. The paper is concerned with the meanings of the above term in the models provided by the commutator theory and clarifies contexts in which these meanings occur. The work is presented in an abstracted form: main ideas are outlined but proofs are deferred to the second part of the paper. (shrink)
The contributions collected in this section deal with some of the most crucial issues addressed in the Report on “Social Responsibility and Health” of the International Bioethics Committee: the importance of ‘social responsibility’ in the promotion of health, i.e. far beyond the context of the ethics of management and private companies where the term was introduced at first; the role of solidarity as a necessary presupposition for a genuinely universalistic morality of justice; the content of the right to health (...) care, especially when we consider it as a ‘legal’ right; the quest for efficiency in health care policies, which is indispensable if we want to effectively extend the enjoyment of progressively higher standard of health; the sense of responsibility in the context of professional activities; the decision making procedures that are to be implemented in order to achieve a fair and just allocation of resources. (shrink)
This paper introduces a generalization of Reiter’s notion of “extension” for default logic. The main difference from the original version mainly lies in the way conﬂicts among defaults are handled: in particular, this notion of “general extension” allows defaults not explicitly triggered to pre-empt other defaults. A consequence of the adoption of such a notion of extension is that the collection of all the general extensions of a default theory turns out to have a nontrivial algebraic structure. This (...) fact has two major technical fall-outs: ﬁrst, it turns out that every default theory has a general extension; second, general extensions allow one to deﬁne a well-behaved, skeptical relation of defeasible consequence for default theories, satisfying the principles of Reﬂexivity, Cut, and Cautious Monotonicity formulated by D. Gabbay. (shrink)
This paper describes the establishment of and the issues experienced by the Research Ethics Committee (REC) of a Business School within a University in Ireland. It identifies the issue of voluntarily given informed consent as a key challenge for RECs operating in a Business School context. The paper argues that whilst the typology of ethical issues in business research are similar to the wider social sciences, the fact that much research is carried out in the workplace adds to the (...) complexity of the REC deliberations. The use of deception in the design of research studies, pestering the local community and the potential for harm to the researcher are also discussed briefly in the context of business research. The experiences of the authors’, two of whom have served as respective chairpersons of the business school REC since its inception in addition to being members of the university level REC, inform the discussion. (shrink)
This paper deals with a number of technical achievements that are instrumental for a dis-solution of the so-called "Hole Argument" in general relativity. Such achievements include: 1) the analysis of the "Hole" phenomenology in strict connection with the Hamiltonian treatment of the initial value problem. The work is carried through in metric gravity for the class of Christoudoulou-Klainermann space-times, in which the temporal evolution is ruled by the "weak" ADM energy; 2) a re-interpretation of "active" diffeomorphisms as "passive and (...) metric-dependent" dynamical symmetries of Einstein's equations, a re-interpretation which enables to disclose their (up to now unknown) connection to gauge transformations on-shell; understanding such connection also enlightens the real content of the Hole Argument or, better, dis-solves it together with its alleged "indeterminism"; 3) the utilization of the Bergmann-Komar "intrinsic pseudo-coordinates", defined as suitable functionals of the Weyl curvature scalars, as tools for a peculiar gauge-fixing to the super-hamiltonian and super-momentum constraints; 4) the consequent construction of a "physical atlas" of 4-coordinate systems for the 4-dimensional "mathematical" manifold, in terms of the highly non-local degrees of freedom of the gravitational field (its four independent "Dirac observables"). Such construction embodies the "physical individuation" of the points of space-time as "point-events", independently of the presence of matter, and associates a "non-commutative structure" to each gauge fixing or four-dimensional coordinate system; 5) a clarification of the multiple definition given by Peter Bergmann of the concept of "(Bergmann) observable" in general relativity. This clarification leads to the proposal of a "main conjecture" asserting the existence of i) special Dirac's observables which are also Bergmann's observables, ii) gauge variables that are coordinate independent (namely they behave like the tetradic scalar fields of the Newman-Penrose formalism). A by-product of this achievements is the falsification of a recently advanced argument asserting the absence of (any kind of) "change" in the observable quantities of general relativity. 6) a clarification of the physical role of Dirac and gauge variables as their being related to "tidal-like" and "inertial-like" effects, respectively. This clarification is mainly due to the fact that, unlike the standard formulations of the equivalence principle, the Hamiltonian formalism allows to define notion of "force" in general relativity in a natural way; 7) a proposal showing how the physical individuation of point-events could in principle be implemented as an experimental setup and protocol leading to a "standard of space-time" more or less like atomic clocks define standards of time. We conclude that, besides being operationally essential for building measuring apparatuses for the gravitational field, the role of matter in the non-vacuum gravitational case is also that of "participating directly" in the individuation process, being involved in the determination of the Dirac observables. This circumstance leads naturally to a peculiar new kind of "structuralist" view of the general-relativistic concept of space-time, a view that embodies some elements of both the traditional "absolutist" and "relational" conceptions. In the end, space-time point-events maintain a "peculiar sort of objectivity". Some hints following from our approach for the quantum gravity programme are also given. (shrink)
This article about the social responsibility of the large corporation is not a paper about stewardship in general. If it were, it would have to focus primarily on the principle of long-term market accountability and the related principle of fidelity to long-term stockholder interests. Most of management's stewardship responsibilities can be subsumed under those two principles.This paper will deal with areas in which those two principles alone are not adequate to define management's stewardship responsibilities. These areas of social accountability (...) occur chiefly where the interests of employees or the general public are at stake — where their human and social purposes sometimes collide with the more limited commercial purposes of the large corporation. (shrink)
In 2006 the Government issued a White Paper in which it proposed a ban on human-animal embryo research pending greater clarity on its potential. The Commons Select Committee on Science and Technology initiated an Inquiry and concluded that such research was necessary and should be permitted immediately. The Government agreed and this is reflected in revised legislation. The Government has issued guidelines on the gathering and use of scientific advice and evidence, designed to ensure that these are “credible, reliable (...) and objective.” This article tests the Committee’s approach in the light of its remit and these, and other, relevant guidelines and concludes that it failed to meet these standards. Rather, it effectively ceded to an interest group the regulation of its own activities. The article ends by suggesting alterations to the Committee’s remit and composition designed to ensure that the public interest is better protected in future. (shrink)
The selectionist account of behavior is actually a focused discussion of operant selection. To this end, the authors essentially exclude stimuli from their analysis. This exclusion is inconsistent with the importance placed on environmental interaction in their general account. Further, this exclusion limits the generality of their account by missing important sources of stimulus-elicited behavior (e.g., classical conditioning).
This paper offers a general reply to arguments from perceptual distortion (e.g. blur, perspective, double vision) against the representationalist thesis that the phenomenal characters of experiences supervene on their intentional contents. It has been argued that distorted and undistorted experiences are counterexamples to this thesis because they can share contents without sharing phenomenal characters. In reply, I suggest that cases of perceptual distortion do not constitute counterexamples to the representationalist thesis because the contents of distorted experiences are always impoverished (...) in some way compared to those of normal experiences. This is can be shown by considering limit cases of perceptual distortion, for example, maximally blurry experiences, which manifestly lack detailed content. I argue that since there is no reasonable way to draw the line between distorted experiences that have degraded content and distorted experiences that don't, we should allow that an increase in distortion is always accompanied by a degradation in content. I also discuss the prospects for a positive account of the contents specific to distorted experiences, which I argue are dim, but for reasons that should not throw doubt on the representationalist thesis. (shrink)
Inferentialism claims that expressions are meaningful by virtue of rules governing their use. In particular, logical expressions are autonomous if given meaning by their introduction-rules, rules specifying the grounds for assertion of propositions containing them. If the elimination-rules do no more, and no less, than is justified by the introduction-rules, the rules satisfy what Prawitz, following Lorenzen, called an inversion principle. This connection between rules leads to a general form of elimination-rule, and when the rules have this form, they (...) may be said to exhibit “general-elimination” harmony. Ge-harmony ensures that the meaning of a logical expression is clearly visible in its I-rule, and that the I- and E-rules are coherent, in encapsulating the same meaning. However, it does not ensure that the resulting logical system is normalizable, nor that it satisfies the conservative extension property, nor that it is consistent. Thus harmony should not be identified with any of these notions. (shrink)
I would like to begin by talking about General Education in America. General Education plays a very particular and interesting role in American Higher Education. A typical undergraduate at one of our colleges or universities is expected to satisfy a range of requirements in his or her major area of study (mathematics, economics, philosophy, etc.); and they will also take a range of electives – courses that are not required for graduation but in which the student might want (...) to explore a developing interest. In addition to both of these, however, most undergraduate institutions (though not all) require that students satisfy a range of general education requirements as well. These are the requirements that must be satisfied for the student to count – in the opinion of the institution – as generally educated. They are the requirements, in other words, that every student must fulfill regardless of their areas of interest or specialty in order to be prepared to enter the broader world and to aspire to live a good life in it. (shrink)
Philosophers have often claimed that general ideas or representations have their origin in abstraction, but it remains unclear exactly what abstraction as a psychological process consists in. We argue that the Lockean aspiration of using abstraction to explain the origins of all general representations cannot work and that at least some general representations have to be innate. We then offer an explicit framework for understanding abstraction, one that treats abstraction as a computational process that operates over an (...) innate quality space of fine-grained general representations. We argue that this framework has important philosophical implications for the nativism-empiricism dispute, for questions about the acquisition of unstructured representations, and for questions about the relation between human and animal minds. (shrink)
Those familiar with contemporary continental philosophy know well the defenses Husserlians have offered of Husserl’s theory of inner time-consciousness against post-modernism’s deconstructive criticisms. As post-modernism gives way to Deleuzean post-structuralism, Deleuze’s Le bergsonisme has grown into the movement of Bergsonism. This movement, designed to present an alternative to phenomenology, challenges Husserlian phenomenology by criticizing the most “important… of all phenomenological problems.” Arguing that Husserl’s theory of time-consciousness detailed a linear succession of iterable instants in which the now internal to consciousness (...) receives prejudicial favor, Bergsonism concludes that Husserl derived the past from the present and cannot account for the sense of the past, which differs in kind from the present. Consequently, everything on Husserl’s account remains present and his theory cannot accommodate for time’s passage. In this paper, I renew the Husserlian defense of Husserl’s theory of time-consciousness in response to the recent movement of Deleuzean Bergsonism. Section one presents Bergsonism’s notion of the past in general and its critique of Husserl’s theory of time-consciousness. Section two presents a rejoinder to Bergsonism’s critique of Husserl, questioning (1) its understanding of the living-present as linearly extended, (2) its conflation of the living-present with Husserl’s early schema-apprehension interpretation, and (3) its failure to grasp Husserl’s revised understanding of primary memory as a result of (2). In conclusion, I suggest that Husserl’s theory of retention might articulate a notion of the past more consistent with Bergson than Bergsonism itself. (shrink)
In this paper I show that Einstein made essential use of aim-oriented empiricism in scientific practice in developing special and general relativity. I conclude by considering to what extent Einstein came explicitly to advocate aim-oriented empiricism in his later years.
How can the propositional attitudes of several individuals be aggregated into overall collective propositional attitudes? Although there are large bodies of work on the aggregation of various special kinds of propositional attitudes, such as preferences, judgments, probabilities and utilities, the aggregation of propositional attitudes is seldom studied in full generality. In this paper, we seek to contribute to filling this gap in the literature. We sketch the ingredients of a general theory of propositional attitude aggregation and prove two new (...) theorems. Our first theorem simultaneously characterizes some prominent aggregation rules in the cases of probability, judgment and preference aggregation, including linear opinion pooling and Arrovian dictatorships. Our second theorem abstracts even further from the specific kinds of attitudes in question and describes the properties of a large class of aggregation rules applicable to a variety of belief-like attitudes. Our approach integrates some previously disconnected areas of investigation. (shrink)
Within the context of general relativity, we consider one definition of a “time machine” proposed by Earman, Smeenk, and Wüthrich. They conjecture that, under their definition, the class of time machine spacetimes is not empty. Here, we prove this conjecture. †To contact the author, please write to: Department of Philosophy, University of Washington, Box 353350, Seattle, WA 98195‐3350; e‐mail: email@example.com.
Traditionally the domain of scientists, the history of science became an independent field of inquiry only in the twentieth century and mostly after the Second World War. This process of emancipation was accompanied by a historiographical departure from previous, 'scientistic' practices, a transformation often attributed to influences from sociology, philosophy and history. Similarly, the liberal humanists who controlled the Cambridge History of Science Committee after 1945 emphasized that their contribution lay in the special expertise they, as trained historians, brought (...) to the venture. However, the scientists who had founded the Committee in the 1930s had already advocated a sophisticated contextual approach: innovation in the history of science thus clearly came also from within the ranks of scientists who practised in the field. Moreover, unlike their scientist predecessors on the Cambridge Committee, the liberal humanists supported a positivistic protocol that has since been criticized for its failure to properly contextualize early modern science. Lastly, while celebrating the rise of modern science as an international achievement, the liberal humanists also emphasized the peculiar Englishness of the phenomenon. In this respect, too, their outlook had much in common with the practices from which they attempted to distance their project. (shrink)
It is generally acknowledged that the requirement that the laws of a spacetime theory be covariant under a general coordinate transformation is a restriction on the form but not the content of the theory. The prevalent view in the physics community holds that the substantive version of general covariance – exhibited, for example, by Einstein’s general theory of relativity – consists in the requirement that diffeomorphism invariance is a gauge symmetry of the theory. This conception of (...) class='Hi'>general covariance is explained and confronted by two challenges. One challenge claims, in effect, that substantive general covariance is not deserving of the name since, just as it is possible to rewrite any spacetime so that it satisfies formal general covariance, so it is also possible to rewrite the theory so that it satisfies the proffered version of substantive general covariance. The other challenge claims that the proffered version of substantive general covariance is not strong enough to guarantee the intended meaning of general covariance. Both challenges are discussed in terms of concrete examples. It is argued that both challenges fail but, at the same time, that they help to clarify what is at stake on the seemingly never ending dispute over the nature and status of general covariance. (shrink)
An examination of the role played by general rules in Hume's positive (nonskeptical) epistemology. General rules for Hume are roughly just general beliefs. The difference between justified and unjustified belief is a matter of the influence of good versus bad general rules, the good general rules being the "extensive" and "constant" ones.
The objection that Einstein's principle of general covariance is not a relativity principle and has no physical content is reviewed. The principal escapes offered for Einstein's viewpoint are evaluated.
The author proposes to add another dichotomy to the list of essential tensions proposed by Professor Duda, namely beauty and ugliness. Physicists believe that only beautiful theories describe the world correctly, and that General Relativity is one of the most beautiful physical theories. The author explains why physicists regard this theory as beautiful.
In this paper I present a game-theoretical approach to the problem of induction. I investigate the comparative success of prediction methods by mathematical analysis and computer programming. Hume's problem lies in the fact that although the success of object-inductive prediction strategies is quite robust, they cannot be universally optimal. My proposal towards a solution of the problem of induction is meta-induction. I show that there exist meta-inductive prediction strategies whose success is universally optimal, modulo short-run losses which are upper-bounded. I (...) then turn to the implications of my approach for the evolution of cognition. In the final section I suggest a revision of the paradigm of bounded rationality by introducing the distinction between local, general and universal prediction strategies. (shrink)
General Relativity and the Standard Model often are touted as the most rigorously and extensively confirmed scientific hypotheses of all time. Nonetheless, these theories appear to have consequences that are inconsistent with evidence about phenomena for which, respectively, quantum effects and gravity matter. This paper suggests an explanation for why the theories are not disconfirmed by such evidence. The key to this explanation is an approach to scientific hypotheses that allows their actual content to differ from their apparent content. (...) This approach does not appeal to ceteris-paribus qualifiers or counterfactuals or similarity relations. And it helps to explain why some highly idealized hypotheses are not treated in the way that a thoroughly refuted theory is treated but instead as hypotheses with limited domains of applicability. (shrink)
The Supreme Court frequently uses two tools to gather information about which cases to hear following a petition for writ of certiorari: the call for response and the call for the views of the Solicitor General. To date, there has been no empirical analysis of how the Supreme Court deploys these tools and little qualitative study. This Article fills in basic gaps in the literature by providing concrete answers to common questions regarding these two tools and offers detailed analysis (...) of how and why states, private parties, and the United States (through the Solicitor General) respond to petitions. In addition, the Article provides much-needed data for litigators and litigants to be able to estimate the probability of their case being heard by the Court, and provides insight on how to react when the Court calls for a response or calls for the views of the Solicitor General. To reach these conclusions, the Article relies on detailed, quantitative analysis of a novel, 30,000-petition dataset, as well as interviews with top Supreme Court litigators, former Supreme Court clerks, and former staff of the Clerk’s office. (shrink)
Analysis of Emmy Noether’s 1918 theorems provides an illuminating method for testing the consequences of “coordinate generality”, and for exploring what else must be added to this requirement in order to give general covariance its far-reaching physical significance. The discussion takes us through Noether’s first and second theorems, and then a third related theorem due originally to F. Klein. Contact will also be made with the contributions of, principally, J.L. Anderson, A. Trautman, P.A.M. Dirac, R. Torretti and the father (...) of the whole business, A. Einstein (an apparent shift in Einstein’s thinking on the significance of general covariance between 1916 and 1918 is highlighted). (shrink)
It is often claimed that the geodesic principle can be recovered as a theorem in general relativity. Indeed, it is claimed that it is a consequence of Einstein's equation (or of the conservation principle that is, itself, a consequence of that equation). These claims are certainly correct, but it may be worth drawing attention to one small qualification. Though the geodesic principle can be recovered as theorem in general relativity, it is not a consequence of Einstein's equation (or (...) the conservation principle) alone. Other assumptions are needed to drive the theorems in question. One needs to put more in if one is to get the geodesic principle out. My goal in this short note is to make this claim precise (i.e., that other assumptions are needed). (shrink)
Harvey Brown believes it is crucially important that the "geodesic principle" in general relativity is an immediate consequence of Einstein's equation and, for this reason, has a different status within the theory than other basic principles regarding, for example, the behavior of light rays and clocks, and the speed with which energy can propagate. He takes the geodesic principle to be an essential element of general relativity itself, while the latter are better seen as contingent facts about the (...) particular matter fields we happen to encounter. The situation seems much less clear and clean to me. There certainly is a sense in which the geodesic principle can be recovered as a theorem in general relativity. But one needs more than Einstein's equation to drive the theorems in question. Other assumptions are needed. One needs to put more in if one is to get the geodesic principle out. My goal in this note is to make this claim precise, i.e., that other assumptions are needed. (shrink)
The dark matter problem in astrophysics exposes an underappreciated weakness in the evidential warrant for General Relativity (GR). The "dark matter double bind" entails that GR gets no differential evidential support from dynamical phenomena occurring at scales larger than our solar system, as compared to members of a significant class of rival gravitation theories. These rivals are each empirically indistinguishable from GR for phenomena taking place at solar system scales, but make predictions that may differ radically from GR's at (...) larger scales. Thus the typical confidence in the universal applicability of GR is insufficiently warranted in the present evidential context. (shrink)
Malament-Hogarth spacetimes are the sort of models within general relativity that seem to allow for the possibility of supertasks. There are various ways in which these spacetimes might be considered physically problematic. Here, we examine these criticisms and investigate the prospect of escaping them.
A substantial part of my reconstruction can aheady be found, in a very condensed form, in the annotauon for the relevant pages of the Einstein-Besso manuscript in Einstein CP4: doc. 14, pp. [41Ã¢â¬â 42]. The letter to Freundlich and other correspondence from the period 1915 Ã¢â¬â 1917 that I drew on for this paper appear in Einstein CPS. I wrote this paper in the context of a larger project of the Maxplanck-Institut flir Wissenschaflsgeschichte which aims at giving the most detailed (...) reconstruction yet of Einstein's path to general relativity. My paper does not necessarily reflect the views of the other members of the group working on this project. See Renn tk Sauer 1996 for a preliminary report on the gmup's findings. (shrink)
The field of global health has reached a critical juncture, where both its visibility and the complexity of its challenges are unprecedented. The World Health Organization, as the only global health actor possessing both democratic and formal legal legitimacy, is best positioned to capitalize on this new, precarious situation in public health and respond with the governance innovation that is needed to bring the increasingly chaotic network of activities and entities affecting health outcomes under the fold of a centralized, standard-setting (...) agency. One such proposed innovation to guide normative and strategic coordination in global health is the creation of a Committee C of the World Health Assembly that would promote consensus building and multi-stakeholder decision-making within the unique convening power of the World Health Organization. (shrink)
"The last remnant of physical objectivity of space-time" is disclosed, beyond the Leibniz equivalence, in the case of a continuous family of spatially non-compact models of general relativity. The physical individuation of point-events is furnished by the intrinsic degrees of freedom of the gravitational field, (viz, the "Dirac observables") that represent - as it were - the "ontic" part of the metric field. The physical role of the "epistemic" part (viz. the "gauge" variables) is likewise clarified. At the end, (...) a peculiar four-dimensional "holistic and structuralist" view of space-time emerges which includes elements common to the tradition of both substantivalism and relationism. The observables of our models undergo real "temporal change" and thereby provide a counter-example to the thesis of the "frozen-time" picture of evolution. (shrink)
The ideas behind open source software are currently applied to the production of encyclopedias. A sample of six English text-based, neutral-point-of-view, online encyclopedias of the kind are identified: h2g2, Wikipedia, Scholarpedia, Encyclopedia of Earth, Citizendium and Knol. How do these projects deal with the problem of trusting their participants to behave as competent and loyal encyclopedists? Editorial policies for soliciting and processing content are shown to range from high discretion to low discretion; that is, from granting unlimited trust to (...) limited trust. Their conceptions of the proper role for experts are also explored and it is argued that to a great extent they determine editorial policies. Subsequently, internal discussions about quality guarantee at Wikipedia are rendered. All indications are that review and ?super-review? of new edits will become policy, to be performed by Wikipedians with a better reputation. Finally, while for encyclopedias the issue of organizational trust largely coincides with epistemological trust, a link is made with theories about the acceptance of testimony. It is argued that both non-reductionist views (the ?acceptance principle? and the ?assurance view?) and reductionist ones (an appeal to background conditions, and a?newly defined??expertise view?) have been implemented in editorial strategies over the past decade. (shrink)
In this essay, Enrique Dussel provides a textual “rereading” of Karl Marx’s theory of fetishism according to his scattered but significantcomments on religion as they extend throughout the whole of his work. In Part I, “The Place of the Subject of Religion in the Whole Work of Marx,” Dussel demonstrates Marx’s differentiation between a critique of the essence of religion and its manifestations, arguing that there is a space in Marx for a anti-fetishized liberatory religion. In Part II, “Toward a (...) Theory of Fetishism in General,” he provides a methodological account of such a religion, as well as a panorama of the content of this essence of religion. These accounts provide the basis for more clearly identifying both religious fetishism and the fetishist character of capital. (shrink)
For much of the last 50 years, a key platform animating public sector reform in Canada and elsewhere has been that efficiency and effectiveness can be achieved by adapting private sector financial management methods and practices. We argue that the recent re-establishment of the Office of the Comptroller General (OCG) of Canada represents a key element of a program of strengthening financial accountability that has emerged within the Canadian Federal Government. Although this program is longstanding and is associated Canada’s (...) implementation of new public management initiatives, it has recently drawn particular sustenance from the sponsorship scandal in Canada. We demonstrate that the reincarnated OCG, re-established amid a rhetoric of “modernization” and of “strengthening” accountability, has a wide-ranging mandate to enhance financial and audit controls, create financial standards, nurture professional development, and oversee government spending. We explore some of the consequences of this development and of the broader financial accountability mechanisms introduced in response to the Sponsorship scandal within the Canadian public sector. (shrink)
How can the propositional attitudes of several individuals be aggregated into overall collective propositional attitudes? Although there are large bodies of work on the aggregation of various special kinds of propositional attitudes, such as preferences, judgments, probabilities and utilities, the aggregation of propositional attitudes is seldom studied in full generality. In this paper, we seek to contribute to …lling this gap in the literature. We sketch the ingredients of a general theory of propositional attitude aggregation and prove two new (...) theorems. Our …rst theorem simultaneously characterizes some prominent aggregation rules in the cases of probability, judgment and preference aggregation, including linear opinion pooling and Arrovian dictatorships. Our second theorem abstracts even further from the speci…c kinds of attitudes in question and describes the properties of a large class of aggregation rules applicable to a variety of belief-like attitudes. Our approach integrates some previously disconnected areas of investigation. (shrink)
Ethical concerns of Internet users continue to rise. Accordingly, several scholars have called for systematic empirical research to address these issues. This study examines the conceptualization and measurement of consumers' perceptions regarding the ethics of online retailers (CPEOR). Also, this research represents a first step into the analysis of the relationship between CPEOR, consumers' general Internet expertise and reported positive word of mouth (WOM). Results, from a convenience sample of 357 online shoppers, suggest that CPEOR can be operationalized as (...) a second-order construct composed of four dimensions: security, privacy, fulfillment, and non-deception. Our findings also indicate that consumers' general Internet expertise significantly improves CPEOR and CPEOR are strongly predictive of consumers' WOM. Managerial and research implications are offered. (shrink)
This article deals with a set-theoretic interpretation of the Talmudic rules of General and Specific, known as Klal and Prat (KP), Prat and Klal (PK), Klal and Prat and Klal (KPK) and Prat and Klal and Prat (PKP).
This paper compares four techniques for measuring the masses of galaxies and larger astrophysical systems from their dynamics. The apparent agreement of these techniques is sometimes invoked as reason for hypothesizing the existence of huge quantities of “dark matter” as the best solution to “the dynamical discrepancy”, the 100-fold disparity between the amount of mass visible in large scale astrophysical systems and the amount calculated from dynamics. This paper argues that the agreement, though suggestive, is not definitive. The coincident measurements (...) remain the best reason for preferring dark matter over revisions to General Relativity for solving the dynamical discrepancy, but the resulting warrant for this preference is weak. (shrink)
More than 25 years after the discovery that the equilibrium point of a general equilibrium model is not necessarily either unique or stable, there is still a need for an intuitively comprehensible explanation of the reasons for this discovery. Recent accounts identify two causes of the finding of instability: the inherent difficulties of aggregation, and the individualistic model of consumer behaviour. The mathematical dead end reached by general equilibrium analysis is not due to obscure or esoteric aspects of (...) the model, but rather arises from intentional design features, present in neoclassical theory since its beginnings. Modification of economic theory to overcome these underlying problems will require a new model of consumer choice, nonlinear analyses of social interactions, and recognition of the central role of institutional and social constraints. (shrink)
In this essay, Enrique Dussel provides a textual “rereading” of Karl Marx’s theory of fetishism according to his scattered but significant comments on religion as they extend throughout the whole of his work. In Part I, “The Place of the Subject of Religion in the Whole Work of Marx,” Dussel demonstrates Marx’s differentiation between a critique of the essence of religion and its manifestations, arguing that there is a space in Marx for a anti-fetishized liberatory religion. In Part II, “Toward (...) a Theory of Fetishism in General,” he provides a methodological account of such a religion, as well as a panorama of the content of this essence of religion. These accounts provide the basis for more clearly identifying both religious fetishism and the fetishist character of capital. (shrink)
A Dedekind algebra is an ordered pair (B, h), where B is a non-empty set and h is a similarity transformation on B. Among the Dedekind algebras is the sequence of the positive integers. From a contemporary perspective, Dedekind established that the second-order theory of the sequence of the positive integers is categorical and finitely axiomatizable. The purpose here is to show that this seemingly isolated result is a consequence of more general results in the model theory of second-order (...) languages. Each Dedekind algebra can be decomposed into a family of disjoint, countable subalgebras called the configurations of the algebra. There are ?0 isomorphism types of configurations. Each Dedekind algebra is associated with a cardinal-valued function on ? called its configuration signature. The configuration signature counts the number of configurations in each isomorphism type that occurs in the decomposition of the algebra. Two Dedekind algebras are isomorphic iff their configuration signatures are identical. The second-order theory of any countably infinite Dedekind algebra is categorical, and there are countably infinite Dedekind algebras whose second-order theories are not finitely axiomatizable. It is shown that there is a condition on configuration signatures necessary and sufficient for the second-order theory of a Dedekind algebra to be finitely axiomatizable. It follows that the second-order theory of the sequence of the positive integers is categorical and finitely axiomatizable. (shrink)
The Ethics Program at General Dynamics was evaluated relative to its stated objectives and its implied objectives. The program was found to have met its specific objectives which require employees to follow rules and standards of conduct. The program did not apparently meet its implied objectives which would have created a more humanistic work environment for employees. This result apparently stemmed from program planners' intentions to use the hope for better working conditions as a motivation for employees to follow (...) company standards. A substantial conflict was found between the philosophical bases for ethics programs and work environment improvement programs. (shrink)