Re: Compendium of errors in logic.

Sun, 06 Apr 1997 15:14:18 +1000
Bruce R. McFarling (

On Fri, 4 Apr 1997, David Lloyd-Jones wrote:

> > > Finally, the fact that one is a "suspicious soul"does not ipso facto
> > > preordain that everything one examines will turn out wrong. Suspicion
> > > is for many people a useful attribute in finding what is correct, good,
> > > sound and beautiful.

> > Again, I said that suspecting is something that suspicious souls
> > do. I think tha tin categorical terms, that's pretty close to accurate.
> > Whether or no this would lead to a correct, good, sound, and beautiful
> > assessment of what dlj is up to, I leave for the members of the list to
> > judge.

> But this was not the question: the question was the validity, not the
> correctness, of the argument. (Had my correctness been in question I
> suspect that Bruce might have found a way of attacking it without all
> this illogical indirection and suggestion.)

> Ar least we are agreed that it is up to the list to judge -- but it is
> Bruce's reasoning and argument that I submit for the judging.

The question I was addressing, ultimately, was the correctness of
the argument that consisted of constructing a framework for the original
leading question posed to the list, where the construction materials were
primarily supposition and prejudice, and only secondarily the question
that had been posed. What dlj offered was certainly a *possible* reading
of the question, but by no means the strongest reading, and dlj's reading
was offered *in order to* ridicule. This is the procedure I labelled as
suspect, and that is the mildest label I can come up with that is an
honest expression of my view. The rest is mostly exuberance.
OTOH, a more serious concern is that I subscribed to WSN in order
to follow what World Systems thinkers had to say, on a hunch that it might
prove useful. I am firmly of the view, which is of course not shared by
all, that on a list dedicated to the discussion of a particular approach
to social theory, the proponents of that approach should be granted the
benefit of the doubt, and discussions, such as this one, which proponents
do not appear to be interested in should be allowed to die off. I hope
some World Systems thinkers take up the discussion, but if not, I'll be
good and shut up.


Bruce R. McFarling, Newcastle, NSW