[OPE-L:5061] Re: Reply to Andrew on "Proof" [Lenin]

From: Paul Zarembka (zarembka@ACSU.BUFFALO.EDU)
Date: Sat Feb 24 2001 - 08:07:39 EST

The reference to Lenin was to his *Materialism and Empirio-Criticism* in
which he argues that science operates AS IF there is an absolute truth
which can never be reached but we work relatively toward it.  In other
words, we struggle for objective truth but never reach it absolutely, only
relatively.  Of course, this point leaves open the question of ideology
and criteria for deciding whether a person is even engaging in science. 
Anyway, I'm answering the question of what I meant that absolute truth is

Before further answer to his posting, I will think about Andrew's
discussion of "proof" in Marx, using the example that  of expanded
reproduction, even though "Marx doesn't say his intention is to prove that
Ic is not limited by the extent of the market for consumer goods."

Paul Z.

******************** http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/PZarembka

"Drewk" <Andrew_Kliman@msn.com> said, on 02/24/01:

>I had written that the existence of political motivations "doesn't mean
>we can't apply objective and rational methods to assess arguments and
>evidence.  It seems to me that people's motives have nothing to do with
>whether their arguments, theories, etc. are true or false."

>Paul responded:

>"I have no such overriding confidence in intellectuals; how come I cannot
>convince my colleagues to learn Marx?.  Nor do I think there is an
>"absolute" truth that is knowable (Lenin comes to mind here)."

>I didn't mean to express confidence, and in fact I have no such
>confidence.  I only meant that we *can* (in principle) apply rational and
>objective methods, not that we *do* so.  I was
>reacting to the argument one hears frequently that none of us is
>objective (right) and therefore none of us can act in an objective manner

>I don't understand the reference to Lenin.  And when you deny that
>"absolute" truth "is knowable," do you mean "will be known" or "can in
>principle be known"?

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