[OPE-L:4171] Re: Who agrees with Popper?

From: Steve Keen (s.keen@uws.edu.au)
Date: Thu Oct 19 2000 - 18:12:46 EDT

Dear Julian,

Thank you thank you thank you! -:)
At 21:11 19/10/00 +0100, you wrote:
>It's annoying to have to put in a good word for this vastly-over-rated (not
>least by himself) thinker -- but falsifiability is *quite* a good idea as a
>test of whether a set of notions is, so to speak, advanced in good faith.
>(And his anecdote against Adler, which he uses to illustrate his
>disillusionment with confirmationism, is certainly both funny and
>It's just a pity that it's logically disabled as a prescription for practice
>(the Duhem-Quine problem); moreover Popper should have known this (since
>Duhem preceded him by two or three decades) and the fact that he doesn't
>deal with this objection is evidence of either ignorance or deception.
>I note that Nicky (hi -- good to hear from you again) asks for justification
>of the claim that falsifiability is the *only* criterion for scientificity;
>this would certainly be a hard claim to justify, and even Popper never
>claimed this about his stock-in-trade.
>In fact, I seem to recall that he went to some lengths to point out the
>curious and unfortunate consequence of the falsifiability criterion that
>preposterous theories (e.g. "the moon is made of green cheese") are -- being
>highly falsifiable -- highly scientific.
>In his #4166 Jerry questions the usefulness of what he describes as "the
>empiricist method" in comprehending capitalism: to try and nip in the bud
>any discussion at cross-purposes, could Jerry clarify whether he means
>"empiricist" or "empirical"?
>Id' certainly agree with him about the former; if the latter, I think I'd
>want to say that empirical investigation helps us to check whether our
>would-be comprehension of capitalism is actually engaging with the reality
>of it.
Dr. Steve Keen
Senior Lecturer
Economics & Finance
University of Western Sydney Macarthur
Building 11 Room 30,
Goldsmith Avenue, Campbelltown
PO Box 555 Campbelltown NSW 2560
s.keen@uws.edu.au 61 2 4620-3016 Fax 61 2 4626-6683
Home 02 9558-8018 Mobile 0409 716 088
Home Page: http://bus.macarthur.uws.edu.au/steve-keen/

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