Sunday 27 May 2007

The Philosopher vs. the Biblical Fundamentalist (Round Two)

John F. Hobbins, from over at Ancient Hebrew Poetry, has written a response to my post, The Philosopher vs. the Biblical Fundamentalist. In my initial response to Hobbins I claimed that although (or perhaps because) he is a Methodist minister, his position is not a Biblical Fundamentalist one. I believe the reasons for my original assertion will become clear by the end of this post. More significantly, I will argue that even taken on its own terms, Hobbins' position has troubling implications, not only for Biblical Fundamentalism, but for any authoritative view of Christian scripture.

Before delving into my reply to Hobbins, I want to quickly address Matt Nehls' reply to my anti-Fundamentalist argument. Both Hobbins and Nehls agree that the locution, “the Son of Man coming in the clouds”, actually refers to Israel’s apocalyptic victory over its enemies. Nehls posits that this interpretation hinges on the following claims:
First, this passage is Matthew's redactional work on the Markan original (Mark 13) .... Second, in the Markan context, it is clear that the coming of the Son of Man is Jesus' use of first century metaphor for YHWH's reversal of worldly fortune within history at the national level...wherein the true people of God are vindicated and God's enemies are punished....
Nehls maintains that Matthew 16:27,28 is a redaction of Mark 13. In this regard, I think he simply has his facts wrong. Matthew 16:27,28 is actually a parallel of Mark 8:38-9:1. Compare:
Matthew 16:27, 28 (NIV)
Verse 27: For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father's glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what he has done.
Verse 28: I tell you the truth, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.
Mark 9:38-9:1 (NIV)
Verse 38: If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his Father's glory with the holy angels."
Verse 1: And he said to them, "I tell you the truth, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God come with power."
Thus, if Matthew 16:27,28 were a redaction of Mark it would be a redaction of Mark 8:38-9:1, not of Mark 16.

But let us grant, for the sake of argument, that the “second coming” referred to in Matthew 16:27,28 is actually a reference to the apocalyptic victory of Israel. Nehls claims that Jesus' prophecy was fulfilled at the destruction of the temple in 70CE. I find this a rather curious claim since in 70CE Israel was not “vindicated” and its enemies “punished”. On the contrary, the destruction of the temple was but another chapter in the further subjugation of Israel, the exact opposite of what Daniel (and Jesus) predicted. Far from representing Israel's apocalyptic victory the destruction of the temple represented Israel's apocalyptic defeat! Thus, even on Nehls' interpretation (I'm tempted to say especially on Nehl's interpretation) Jesus' prophecy still failed to come true.

To his credit, Hobbins is willing to concede this very point. He writes:
Avery concludes that Jesus was not sent by God, because Jesus predicted that “the Son of Man is going to come in his Father's glory with his angels, and reward each person according to what he has done. Amen I tell you, there are those standing here who will not taste death until they have seen the coming of the Son of Man in his kingdom” (Matt 16:27- 28), but that isn't what happened. I concur: the prediction went unfulfilled.
While I appreciate Hobbins' candour on this score, I find the caviller nature of his admission quite puzzling. The concession that Jesus made an unfulfilled prophecy is, by the lights of many Biblical Fundamentalists, already to wave the white flag to the sceptic about Jesus' divinity. And for good reason. To admit that Jesus made a prophecy that did not come true is to admit that he made a mistake (in fact, Hobbins says as much later on in his post). But admitting that Jesus made a mistake provides an essential premise for the following argument:
(A) The members of the Holy Trinity are infallible

(B) Jesus made a mistake, and therefore is not infallible,


(C) Jesus is not a member of the Holy Trinity
I don't see how Hobbins could resist the conclusion of this argument. I take (A) to be a simple restatement of the widely held Christian doctrine of divine omniscience and infallibility. Moreover, Hobbins has already conceded (B). This seems sufficient to show that he is committed to (C) as well. Now, if Hobbins is willing to grant that Jesus is not a member of the Holy Trinity, then he and I are on common ground. However, (C) is certainly not a conclusion that any Biblical Fundamentalist I am aware of would be willing to accept. Thus, to the extent that Hobbins is comfortable with (C) he does not count as a Biblical Fundamentalist (at least according to my understanding of the term).

Hobbins' main strategy for resisting the conclusion of my anti-Fundamentalist argument is to challenge the legitimacy of the prophetic test (PT) or at least my application of it. First, Hobbins likens my application of PT to an overly legalistic traffic cop:
Most interpreters of an authoritative text, the Bible, the Constitution, the rules of the highway, are not, thank goodness, strict-to-the-second-power constructionists. Unfortunately, my local policeman is, which is why I got a $217.00 ticket for rolling through a stop sign the other day. Mitigating circumstances, like the fact that no other car was anywhere in sight (not even his; he was hidden behind a building), didn’t cut it with him. I made his day. That’s how Avery comes across to me, a bit like my local policeman.
Ad hominem aside, I do not think Hobbins’ analogy is apt. To the extent that we share his intuition that the police officer was unreasonable, I believe the officer's unreasonableness may be explained as follows: It is a basic fact about human nature that we are all fallible. (As the cliché goes, nobody's perfect.) By being uncompromising in his enforcing of the traffic laws the police officer fails to demonstrate an adequate sensitivity to this fact. However, the same argument cannot, or at least should not, be applied to God (or the Son of God). Even if we grant that the Old Testament prophets sometimes made prophecies that did not come to pass (another curious claim Hobbins makes) it seems quite reasonable to hold Jesus to a higher standard.

But what should we make of Hobbin's observation that several Old Testament prophets, including Jeremiah himself, fail to live up to the prophetic test? In my opinion, he is only strengthening the case against, not only Biblical literalism, but against any authoritative reading of the bible. Firstly, one cannot argue that a moral obligation is not binding by demonstrating that others have violated the obligation. That would be analogous to Bush being caught in a lie and then seeking to justify his lie by pointing out that Clinton also lied. (To use another time-worn cliché, two wrongs don't make a right.) Analogously, far from demonstrating Jesus’ innocence, Hobbins' argument only demonstrates Jesus’ and the Old Testament prophet’s shared guilt.

Secondly, even if we were to grant that Hobbins’ argument is correct, the upshot would be that we reject an unequivocal biblical injunction. I find this a very curious proposal for someone who claims to be both a Biblical literalist and Biblical Fundamentalist. From my point of view, one of the few respectable qualities of Biblical Fundamentalism is its refusal to pick and choose which parts of the Bible it takes to be authoritative, in the manner that many liberal Christians do. However, Hobbins' suggestion that we discard a clear biblical injunction represents a betrayal of what I take to be a core Fundamentalist value.

Finally, Hobbins' take-home point seems to be something along the following lines: We should not take the injunction in Deuteronomy 18:22 seriously since other passages, such as Micah 3:12, seem to disregard it. However, the argument works equally well in the opposite direction. If Micah 3:12 may be used to impugn Deuteronomy 18:22, then we are equally entitled to use Deuteronomy 18:22 to impugn Micah 3:12. More significantly, Hobbins does not seem to consider the wider implications of suggesting that an unequivocal scriptural injunction should be dismissed simply because it has implications he considers unfavourable. Pardon the pun, but Hobbins' argument strikes me a bit like stealing from Peter to pay Paul.

Wednesday 23 May 2007

Challenging the Swamping Premise (Carter)

Note: The following is a cross-post written by J. Adam Carter, from over at Virtue Epistemology. Adam has an on-going treatment of the swamping problem, so if that's your thing, be sure to check it out.

The ‘swamping’ argument against reliabilism has been advanced on several occasions (i.e. Kvanvig 2003, Swinburne 1999, Zagzebski 2004, W. Jones 1997, and others), and is, at least prima facie, quite persuasive.

The crucial premise in the argument is, as Kristoffer Ahlstrom (whose formalization I am using) calls it, the swamping premise.

(1) V (SB R,T that p) = V (SBT that p).

The swamping premise has been defended a variety of ways. Zagzebski (2004), for example, defends (1) with her ‘espresso analogy.’ She argues that good espresso from an unreliable espresso machine is just as valuable as good espresso from a reliable espresso machine. Analogously, she thinks, for beliefs. Being produced from a reliable process doesn’t add value to a true belief. And, thus, (1).

Kvanvig (2003) defends the premise with his ‘two lists’ argument; if you want to know where you can get chocolate, and you are given a list telling you where chocolate is sold, and another list telling you where chocolate is ‘likely’ to be sold, then a conjunction of the two lists is no more valuable than the first list. The value of the second list is ‘swamped’ by the value of the first. So to, he thinks, for beliefs. If a reliably produced belief is valuable because it is ‘likely to be true’, then adding this property to a belief already stipulated as true does not increase its value.

The next premise is:

(2) V (SK that p) > V(SBT that P)

But because reliabilists just define knowledge as (SB R,T that p), we derive:

(3) V (SK that p) > V (SB R,T that p). Therefore:

(4) SK that p  df. SB R,T that p

(Note: the move from (3) to (4) relies on an implicit premise that: a difference in value between x and y entails that x  y. This assumption, as a side note, lurks in the background as Meno is reasoning to his conclusion that knowledge just is true belief).

If the ‘swamping premise’ (i.e. P1) can be adequately defended, it is not difficult to show how further premises will lead to a conclusion that process reliabilism is a false theory of knowledge.

There exist some recent attempts to vitiate the swamping argument. I am interested to know whether any succeeds.

First attempt: Kristoffer Ahlstrom and the diachronic goal.

Ahlstrom argues that the swamping premise is true only if our cognitive coal is conceived of synchronically; that is, only if the value relative to which other epistemic states are valuable by virtue of promoting that value, is having true beliefs now. He argues in favour of a reconstrual of our cognitive goal as diachronic—as having true beliefs not only now, but also later. Under such a framework, he thinks, a reliably formed belief is more valuable than a mere true belief. Here’s Ahlstrom:

To be (or have been) reliably formed is such a component since being (or having been) reliably formed implies something about the etiology of the belief in question—an etiology that, if repeatedly instantiated, will promote our diachronic goal to attain and maintain true beliefs through tracking the truth. To believe truly, however, is no such diachronic component since it carries no promise to the effect that the belief was formed in response to the way the world is rather than as a result of mere luck. This is why the presence of truth cannot make the epistemic value of believing reliably otiose”. (Ahlstrom, “An Argument Concerning Swamping”)

I agree with Ahlstrom that a ‘synchronic’ conception of our cognitive goal is unhelpfully narrow, however I am not convinced that stipulating a ‘diachronic’ goal gets us the result he wants. My worry is this: the property of a belief that best promotes a diachronic goal is ‘permanence’ of a belief (i.e. see Williamson’s cross-temporal explanation of the value of knowledge in his 2000b), however, permanence attaches to a belief not by virtue of its etiology, but by virtue of the extent to which we hold conviction with regard to the belief. Maybe I’m missing something here.

Second try: Goldman and Olsson No. 1

Goldman and Olsson in “Reliabilism and the Value of Knowledge” bring up an interesting case which, they admit, is not at the crux of their argument, but is nonetheless worth mentioning here. They suggest that in at least some deployments of the word ‘know’, we mean nothing other than ‘truly believes.’ Therefore, in at least some cases, it is no more valuable to know than to truly believe. The example they cite is one from Hawthorne (2004) who imagines that a classroom is asked ‘Who knows the capital of Austria?” The idea here is that: whomever says ‘Vienna’ is credited as knowing, and ipso facto, knowledge in such cases just is true belief.
Two problems here. Firstly, I think that it is more likely that in the classroom case, we just ‘misuse’ the word know (in the same way that we might use ‘deny’ sloppily rather than ‘refute’). But that aside, even if the case were legitimate, and we infer from that that some cases of knowing aren’t more valuable than their true-belief counterparts, it wouldn’t establish anything that we haven’t already learned from Sosa’s sand on the beach case. There are some propositions such that knowing them isn’t more valuable than truly believing them.

Second try: Goldman and Olsson No. 2

This case is the interesting case. It is an attack of Kvanvig’s two lists’ argument. Goldman and Olsson think that Kvanvig’s two lists argument relies on allegedly spurious thesis of ‘property parasitism’:

Property Parasitism: If the value of property P* is parasitic on the value of property P, then the value of P and P* together does not exceed the value of P. (Goldman and Olsson, p. 10)

Goldman and Olsson think property parasitism is false by way of counterexample: Suppose, they argue, that you have a ticket worth $1000 and another ticket that has a 10% chance of winning $1000. Clearly you would want both the $1000 and the ticket more than you would want merely the $1000. But, they think, if property parasitism is true, then the $1000 ‘swamps’ the value of the ticket, and thus, you should not prefer the conjunction of the two over the $1000.

This is quite clever. I’m afraid, though, that there is a subtle disanalogy between what Kvanvig is trying to do with the two lists argument (about wanting chocolate) and with the money case. In Kvanvig’s case, you goal is a true belief. You can’t get ‘truer than true’ and so once you have a true belief, then adding the property that it is ‘likely to be true’ doesn’t add to the value. On the Goldman/Olson case, though, it remains possible that your conjunction (i.e. of the $1000 and the ticket) could amount to something ‘more valuable than $1000), and for that reason, it seems to be relevantly disanalogous to what takes place when we adopt truth as a goal.

There are other ways to go about saving reliabilism form the swamp (i.e. Pritchard’s ‘final value’ discussion of reliable processes, as well as Greco’s ‘intrinsic value of success through ability’ defense of virtue reliabilism), but I’ll stop the discussion here and see if anyone thinks that any of the first three examples are legitimate reasons to deny the swamping premise.

Saturday 12 May 2007

Strongly Believe vs. Weakly Believe

Note: This post was originally composed as a reply to Rachael's insightful comments in response to my post, “Probable But Unjustifiable”, over at the Web of Belief. The proposal I canvas is still rough and needs further ironing out. Any feedback is greatly appreciated.

Occasionally, we use “I believe” to identify something we are certain about. For example, I believe that I am now thinking. Sometimes we use ‘I believe’ to describe something we are intellectually/ rationally/ doxastically committed to. For example, I believe that 1 + 1 = 2. Often we use ‘I believe’ to identify something we take ourselves to know. I believe I'm currently looking at a computer monitor. This is also something that I know! However, we frequently use ‘I believe’ to indicate something we merely hold to be likely. Consider the following exchange:
A: “Is it 2:30pm yet?”
B: “I'm not sure, but I believe it is.”
B seems like a perfectly natural thing to say (though on at least one reading of “believe” it would be self-contradictory). I take B to express something along the following lines:
B*: “I'm not sure, but it seems likely.”
Thus, often when we say that we believe that p, we simply mean that we hold p to be likely or as having a high probability of being true. However, this cannot be the notion of belief that factors into a JTB account of knowledge since to know something we must be sure about it, and not merely think it likely. (Consider, for example, the contrast between merely believing your ticket will lose (read: likely to lose) and actually knowing that your ticket has lost after the results of the drawing have been announced.) If I am right that knowing p requires that one be intellectually/ rationally/ doxastically committed to p (rather than being committed to p being merely likely) the type of belief that factors into a JTB account of knowledge must implicate intellectual commitment to the truth of p.

There is, of course, an alternative way of construing the present debate (inspired by one reading† of McDowell's disjunctivism): To simply dispense with the JTB account altogether and offer a disjunctive analysis of knowledge and belief. On the disjunctive view one either knows that p or merely believes that p. The former is factive while the latter is evidential and probabilistic, and there is no common factor shared between the two. More precisely, knowledge is not to be understood as a special kind of belief or belief plus something else (e.g., justification and truth).

There are at least three objections to the disjunctive approach to knowledge and belief. First, the knowledge/belief disjunction seems out of step with how we normally speak. For example, how are we to reconcile the claim that we either (exclusively) know that p or believe that p, with the datum that we often say we believe things that we also take ourselves to know.

Second, it seems to present a problem for the intuition that known propositions can be justified. It is a necessary condition of a proposition being justified (as opposed to merely being justifiable) that a subject have some justification for believing the proposition. But while it makes sense to talk about someone having justification for believing that p, it does not make sense to talk about someone having justification for knowing that p. (For example, seeing that p may constitute justification for believing that p, but it does not constitute justification for knowing that p.) The latter (i.e., justification for knowing that p) would be a type of category mistake. “Knowing” simply is not the sort of thing one could conceivably have justification for. Now, if we keep believing as a constituent of knowing (à la JTB), then we may continue to hold that known propositions are justified since the believing implicated in the knowing is justified. However, once we chuck believing as a constituent of knowing, there is nothing left to be justified. Thus, we would be forced to conclude that known propositions are not justified.

Third, once we have renounced the idea that believing is a constituent of knowing it becomes unclear how we are to bridge the gap between being in a position to know that p and actually knowing p. This objection is particularly pertinent to McDowell's epistemology-oriented disjunctivism (in contradistinction from, say, Snowdon's perception-oriented disjunctivism). According to McDowell's epistemic disjunctivism, perceptual experiences (i.e., the good case) put a subject, S, in the position to know that p, but it does not actually confer knowledge on S. (See: McDowell's “Criteria, Defeasibility and Knowledge” fn 37.) McDowell stresses that it is important to keep the two separate since there may be situations in which a subject is in a position to know that p, but still fails to know that p. For example, imagine a subject with perfectly reliable vision, who (for some unknown reason) took her vision to be unreliable. (Perhaps she was tricked into believing that her coffee was spiked by a powerful hallucinogen.) In such a case, the de facto reliability of the subject's visual experience would put her in a position to know that p, but her belief that her vision was unreliable would prevent her from having knowledge. Now, the question is, what bridges the gap between a subject merely being in a position to know that p and her actually knowing that p?

I submit that this is where believing (as intellectual commitment to p being true) comes in. It is only when we adopt an attitude of belief towards p that we cross over from merely being in a position to know that p to actually knowing p. Absent the attitude of belief, we may continue to have p among our mental contents (and thus be in a position to know that p) but we would not know that p. In order to know that p, one must take a stand on p; one must be intellecutally/ rationally/ doxastically committed to the truth of p. Thus, believing p is indispensable for knowing p.

My proposal:
As an alternative to the knowing/believing disjunction I propose that a distinction be made within the concept of believing itself, what I will refer to as strongly believe and weakly believe. To strongly believe that p entails that a subject is intellectually/ rationally/ doxastically committed to p being true. To weakly believe that p entails that a subject is intellectually/ rationally/ doxastically committed to p being likely or highly probable. The primary goal of my distinction between strongly believing and weakly believing is to make sense of the different uses of “believe” in our ordinary speech. However, it is also an interesting question whether the proposed distinction may have implications for problems related to the concept of justification as well. This is a possibility I hope to explore in greater detail in the near future. But for the time being, the central contention of this post may be summarised as follows: To the extent that we are concerned with knowledge (i.e., true justified belief), it is belief as intellectual commitment to the truth of p that is at play. Thus, for a subject to know that p she must also strongly believe that p.

†This particular reading of McDowellian disjunctivism is implicit in Charles Travis' paper, “A Sense of Occasion”.

Monday 7 May 2007

The Philosopher vs. the Biblical Fundamentalist

I realise that this post is a radical departure from the usual content of this blog, but I thought it would be fun to mix things up a little. Here, I will be presenting an argument against certain types of Biblical Fundamentalism—namely, those which hold to a literal interpretation of the Bible. The argument presented here was originally featured on one of my weblogs as a parody. But after receiving several email correspondences from Biblical Fundamentalists attempting to refute my argument (quite unsuccessfully in my opinion), I am beginning to suspect that I may actually be on to something. My argument, simply stated, is that if Biblical literalism is true (a claim many Biblical Fundamentalist subscribe to) then Biblical Fundamentalism must be false.

Let us define Biblical literalism as the claim that the Bible should be interpreted at face value, unless otherwise clearly indicated. On this view, the creation of the world by God, the parting of the red sea by Moses, the resurrection of Jesus Chirst, and the prophesied return of Jesus to earth and final judgement are to be interpreted as actual historical events. The final clause of my definition of Biblical literalism—i.e., “unless otherwise clearly indicated”—acknowledges that there are parts of scripture, such as the parables or the visions described in the book of Revelation, that are meant to be interpreted symbolically.

The definition of Biblical literalism presented here is not arbitrary. There are many Biblical Fundamentalists who subscribe to Biblical literalism as here adumbrated. Let Biblical fundamentalism be minimally taken to entail BF:
BF: Jesus Christ was sent by God.
In the Old Testament book of Jeremiah, chapter 28, a general principle, known as the 'prophetic test' is articulated. According to the prophetic test, a prophet “will be recognized as one truly sent by the LORD only if his prediction comes true ”(verse 9). Stated in the contrapositive, the prophetic test may be put as follows:
PT: If a prophet makes a prediction that does not come true, then that prophet is not sent by God.
It may be protested that PT is actually the contrapositive of Jeremiah 28:9. However, the contrapositive of a material conditional is classically considered its equivalent. (This point was first brought to my attention by Shawn. See comments) Either way, we may find a statement of the prophetic test in the contrapositive form in Deuteronomy 18:22:
Deuteronomy 18:22 (NIV)
Verse 22: If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the LORD does not take place or come true, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.
Hence, we may conclude that PT has the endorsement of the Bible. So far, so good.

In Matthew 16:27,28 Jesus predicts that (1) his second coming and (2) the final judgement would take place within the lifetime of some of the people in his audience.
Matthew 16:27, 28 (NIV)
Verse 27: For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father's glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what he has done.
Verse 28: I tell you the truth, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.
However, all the individuals in Jesus' audience are dead (and have been for some time now) and, neither (1) the second coming nor (2) the final judgement has taken place. Therefore:
(*) Jesus' prediction did not come true.
Given PT and (*), we must conclude that:
C: Jesus was not sent by God.
Therefore, Biblical Fundamentalism is false.

Thursday 3 May 2007

Boghossian-Style Incompatibilism (Part 2)

In my previous post I outline a reductio against compatibilism. However, I believe the compatibilist has good reason reject (R4) of the reductio. Underlying (R4) is the implicit assumption that a subject can only have privileged access to the fact that she is thinking some thought θ if she is able to distinguish it, from some other thought θ*, without consulting her environment. However, the compatibilist has good (independent) grounds to reject this assumption, and with it, (R4). For example, Falvey and Owens [1994] distinguish between ‘introspective knowledge of content’ and ‘introspective knowledge of comparative content’:
(*) An individual knows the contents of his occurrent thoughts and beliefs authoritatively and directly (that is, without relying on inferences from observation of his environment). Call this kind of knowledge introspective knowledge of content.

(**) With respect to any two of his thoughts or beliefs, and individual can know authoritatively and directly (that is, without relying on inferences from his observed environment) whether or not they have the same content. Call this kind of knowledge introspective knowledge of comparative content. (pp. 109-110. Italics theirs)
Clearly, C-externailism is incompatible with (**). However, Falvey and Owens maintain that (**) does not coincide with our everyday attributions of self-knowledge. To see this, they invite us to consider a well-known debate between Benson Mates and Alonzo Church. Mates and Church disagree on how the relationship between the following two propositions should be understood:
(i) Nobody doubts that whoever believes that Mary is a physician believes that Mary is a physician.

(ii) Nobody doubts that whoever believes that Mary is a physician believes that Mary is a doctor.
Mates [1952] takes himself to be expressing two different thoughts when he utters (i) and (ii), while Church [1954] believes that the thought he expresses by (i) and (ii) are the same. Each believes that the thought he expresses when he utters either of these sentences is the thought captured by the sentence in the public language, English. Moreover, both are proficient in English, and are familiar with all of the terms expressed in (i) and (ii). Presumably, each of them knows perfectly well the thought each sentence expresses. However, one of them must obviously be wrong. Which of the two is in error is irrelevant for our present purposes. The take-home point is that it would seem highly implausible to suppose that whoever is wrong is guilty of some sort of introspective failure.

This example intimates that one can, in a very ordinary sense, know that one is thinking the thought θ and not know whether or not one is thinking the thought θ* in thinking this very thought. Moreover, introspection is of no assistance to Mates and Churchland in attempting to settle this disagreement. Falvey and Owens [1994] summarises the upshot of the Mates-Churchland dispute:
To resolve the dispute between Mates and Church one does not need better inner eyes; one needs additional information about the world we live in, the nature of our linguistic practice, the semantic theories that best represent that practice, and so on. (p. 113)
Some of this information would admittedly be logico-philosophical in nature. However, it is also clear that no consensus could be reached between the two independent of a serious empirical investigation of linguistic practice. Thus, the fact that we have a priori knowledge of our thought contents does not entail that we must be able to discriminate between them without recourse to empirical observation. We may therefore consider (**) implausible, along with (R4).

Wednesday 2 May 2007

Avery's (Alliterative) Amsterdam Adventure

City Centre

Chiming Churches

Time-Telling Tower

Avery and Angela

Carriages, Canals...

and Concupiscence

Naughty Knickknacks

Patently Pornographic

Herb House

Cocoa Confectionaries

Fat Figurines

Riverside Residences

Water World (minus Kevin Costner)

Cathedral, Carriage, and Countrymen

Twin Towers

Fabulous Footwear!