Author Topic: Truth =/= knowledge  (Read 664 times)

90sRetroFan

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Truth =/= knowledge
« on: August 09, 2020, 04:18:02 am »
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A common mistake is to believe that a civilization that values knowledge is the same thing as a civilization that values truth. Leftists who hold this mistaken belief often find it difficult to perceive the inferiority of Western civilization, since they see how Western civiliation has massively increased knowledge in the world and hence (wrongly) presume it serves the cause of truth. Only by highlighting the difference between truth and knowledge can this mistake be satisfactorily eliminated.

Truth is a qualitative concept. An informative statement is either true or false. The lower the % of false statements a civilization makes, the more truthful it is. A civilization that values truth is opposed to false statements. Under this value scheme, X which makes 20/20 true statements would be considered superior to Y which makes 30/60 true statements. Furthermore, Z which makes 60/60 true statements would be considered no better than X at best, and (explanation below) indeed possibly worse.

Knowledge is a quantitative concept. The larger the number of true statements a civilization possesses, the more knowledgeable it is. A civilization that values knowledge wants to accumulate the number of true statements it possesses. Under this value scheme, Y would be considered superior to X, and Z further superior to Y.

Western civilization fundamentally values knowledge, and values truth only on account of its utility in maximizing knowledge. It therefore considers itself superior to all other civilizations based on its demonstrably greater output (usually measuring from the Renaissance onwards) of allegedly true statements. The False Left has disagreed with this based almost entirely on (sometimes reasonable, sometimes contrived) scepticism towards the alleged Western output of true statements compared to non-Western output, thereby revealing if nothing else that its own value scheme remains Western at its core.

The True Left which genuinely values only truth (and not knowledge), in contrast, finds it easy to reject the claim of Western superiority, and indeed to confidently assert Western inferiority, via rejecting the Western value scheme itself. The key is to recognize the following:

Every statement made has a possibility of being false, therefore a civilization that makes more statements in total has greater potential to be an untruthful civilization than a civilization that makes fewer statements in total.

Thus a civilization that makes more statements than are necessary tends to be inferior. Rational statements can at least be logically proven to be true, and therefore are theoretically non-dangerous to truth (though in practice erroneous proofs may be accepted until the error is spotted). Empirical statements, on the other hand, cannot be proven to be true, thus structurally endanger truth just by existing (especially when they are assumed to be true). Moreover, in many subject areas, each additional statement made - even if itself true - enables derivative statements (which may or may not be true) to subsequently be made, thereby further increasing the potential for falsehood to slip in somewhere down the line. Overall, the cause of truth is best served by making no more statements than are necessary. Western civilization, of course, attempts to make as many statements (albeit, to be fair, statements which it would prefer to be true) as it can, in as wide a variety of subject areas as it can come up with. Thus Western civilization should be considered the most inferior civilization in the world by all who value truth. (Indeed it is trivially obvious by inspection that the complex society created by Western civilization offers vastly greater possibilities for deception in every aspect of life.)

So how much knowledge can be considered necessary for a civilization? We would answer: no more than is required for the correct functioning of the various practical aspects of the lifestyle of that civilization. The simpler its lifestyle, generally the less knowledge a civilization can afford to be dependent on, and hence the more superior it is in its loyalty to truth. We fundamentally view knowledge as a burden which should ideally be lightened as much as possible by simplification of lifestyle. This is part of asceticism, which underlies the True Left worldview.

Finally, when competing civilizations exist, knowledge is often power. As such, necessary knowledge must (sadly) also include (at least temporarily) as much knowledge is needed for the spontaneously simpler civilizations to successfully destroy the spontaneously more complex civilizations, which must occur before the former can safely return to simplicity. (In this case alone can Z be considered superior to X, if its extra knowledge pertains to defeating spontaneously more complex civilizations.) In other words, Western civilization must die.

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“In this case alone can Z be considered superior to X, if its extra knowledge pertains to defeating spontaneously more complex civilizations.”
So basically Western civilization is only useful insofar as it can be used to destroy itself.

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(With regard to the impact of the colonial era on empiricism, which is what it sounded like you wanted to discuss, individual advocates of empiricism did exist in non-Western civilizations prior to the colonial era, but it is definitely true that the prestige of empiricism in non-Western countries today is a consequence of deference more towards Western empiricism (introduced during the colonial era) than towards any of the non-Western empiricists. On the other hand, the False Left approach is to emphasize these non-Western empiricists as a way to show that non-Western civilizations are not inferior. This merely further reinforces the prestige of empiricism as a whole. The True Left must challenge empiricism itself.)

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"On the other hand, the False Left approach is to emphasize these non-Western empiricists as a way to show that non-Western civilizations are not inferior."

Yes. The Carvakas are an example of this. Empiricists will often cite that "science" (i.e. empirical science) is not "Western" because it is merely the belief in the scientific method, but this can be disproved by showing how the scientific method itself originated in Aristotelean Greece and Enlightenment Era Europe. After this, the empiricists will bring up the non-Western empiricists. How do you propose we refute this? To show that belief in the superiority of empiricism* is ultimately a Western concept, and therefore Eurocentric?

*Also, I find it particularly irritating that empiricists tend to conflate Enlightenment empiricism with rationalism, referring to themselves as "rationalists", when in fact they are only empiricists.

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"the empiricists will bring up the non-Western empiricists. How do you propose we refute this? To show that belief in the superiority of empiricism* is ultimately a Western concept, and therefore Eurocentric?"

While there certainly existed individual empiricists arising in non-Western countries, those countries did not adopt empiricism owing to their influence. Rather, those countries eventually adopted empiricism only after contact with Western civilization during the colonial era. In other words, empiricism on its own was not persuasive to them; instead it was the machines possessed by the colonial powers that convinced them that empiricism (which enabled such machines to be invented) equalled worldly might, and hence had to be incorporated as a matter of self-defence given that an empiricist civilization was currently colonizing them.

It was Westerners alone who adopted empiricism without being under attack from an existing empiricist civilization with more advanced machines.

"I find it particularly irritating that empiricists tend to conflate Enlightenment empiricism with rationalism, referring to themselves as "rationalists", when in fact they are only empiricists."

In the old days, telling someone you are a rationalist was understood to imply that you are not an empiricist.....

By the way, have you noticed how recent crime fiction has become increasingly empiricist, emphasizing forensic analysis and other material elements? This is in contrast with the more rationalist Counterculture era crime fiction which was mostly about spotting contradictions in testimonials, which of course is much more entertaining for the viewer! Empiricism ruins art!

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For sure!
Are you aware of the "Encyclopedia Brown" book series? I used to read them when I was a kid:
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Encyclopedia_Brown

The books specifically focused on detecting anomalies in crime stories, which, incidentally, was what led me to further investigate things such as 9/11.

Nowadays, I rarely pay attention to whatever new crime drama is airing on television. It seems as though the predominance of material analysis is specifically tailored to cater to the sensibilities of Westerners, who seek sensory stimulation at every end.

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I have probably seen it around the library, but I did not follow the series. There were many similar series during the Counterculture era, mostly with children as the detectives. Some even tried to show children being better detectives than adults precisely because they had less knowledge and/or experience of the world and thus made fewer assumptions when initially studying a case. Also, because the criminals were usually adults, when covering their tracks they only accounted for what other adults were likely to notice, and would often miss something that adults would not notice but is obvious to children.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNCRnlKfQXc

I wish we could go back to talking about these types of subjects again...

Looking back, it seems as though back then racism was so foreign, so alien to my mind that I could not even comprehend what a racist world would look like. Little did I know what was in store for me in a decade....

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Scientific Proof Is A Myth:
www.forbes.com/sites/startswithabang/2017/11/22/scientific-proof-is-a-myth/#7b843b942fb1

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Leave it to westerners and they'll measure everything eventually, or die trying, until nothing in the universe has not been touched and measured by their hand.

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Sam Harris (Jew) claims "science" can answer moral questions:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hj9oB4zpHww

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All he is doing is a word substitution: "well-being"/"flourishing"/etc. in place of "moral good" and then spuriously acting as though there already exists consensus (at least among the audience) on what "well-being"/"flourishing"/etc. is, thereby avoiding any serious discussion of morality while getting away with pretending that he is discussing morality.

A simple question to expose his bullshit would be: who deserves "well-being"?

The main point is that in his whole talk Harris only ever talks about quantitatively maximizing "well-being" etc. without ever considering that that could include giving it to those who do not deserve it - a huge moral red flag, yet one that Harris does not address, proving he is inherently not a moral thinker.

I remember another talk by Harris (though I can't seem to find the video now) where he starts by asking his audience to imagine a world in which everyone is suffering the worst pain imaginable. According to him, no one should dispute that this would be the worst possible world. But it was trivially obvious to me that a worse world would be one in which only the good people suffer the worst pain imaginable while the evil people enjoy themselves. Indeed, I would consider the world Harris describes to be better than where we are now, since over there at least the evil people are getting what they deserve, and the good people should prefer suffering along with the evil people than letting the evil people get away unpunished! And that Harris apparently never looked at it this way reveals again that he is not a moral thinker.
« Last Edit: August 09, 2020, 04:19:51 am by 90sRetroFan »

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90sRetroFan

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2020, 04:41:38 am »
False Leftists will keep getting badly humiliated by rightists so long as they keep trying to claim credit for Western knowledge, since the very attempt to do so is an affirmation of the value of the knowledge being claimed:



Only the True Left approach of despising Western knowledge can defeat rightism. Instead of trying to claim calculus as of non-Western origin, we should be pointing out that it was calculus that made possible the engineering required for the Industrial Revolution (which, predictably enough, arose from the same civilization that invented calculus, duh!) which everyone already knows has irreparably harmed the environment:

https://trueleft.createaforum.com/true-left-vs-right/western-civilization-is-a-health-hazard/

Thus we turn the fact of calculus being a Western discovery into an attack on Western civilization.

In general, knowledge is power. The drive of Western civilization to endlessly accumulate knowledge (and to always seek practical applications for it) is nothing more than a reflection of its desire for increasing its power. This is why Western civilization is uniquely dangerous:

https://trueleft.createaforum.com/true-left-vs-right/if-western-civilization-does-not-die-soon/
« Last Edit: September 16, 2020, 03:29:54 am by 90sRetroFan »

rp

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2020, 05:30:17 am »
Not to mention calculus takes a longer time to learn. This is not to say that it is necessarily more difficult than other types of mathematics (it isn't), it is just extremely tedious and its purpose (i.e. creating complex machinery) is immediately evident upon studying it.

Although I would say some False Leftists who claim Calculus as having non-Western origins are redeemable, as they are merely trying to repudiate the hubris of Westerners, who claim intellectual "superiority". This is especially humiliating if one cannot thouroughly rebut the arguments, and thus has to concede the Western standards of "superiority". I recall when on ProBoards I was venting about this subject, I was more or less hinting at these False Leftists.

90sRetroFan

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2020, 03:06:02 am »
"they are merely trying to repudiate the hubris of Westerners, who claim intellectual "superiority"."

Yes, but by doing so in their way, they are implying that if calculus is owed to Western civilization, then even they would agree that Western civilization is intellectually superior.

What we need is a different standard of judging intellectual superiority. Seriously, what is so intellectually superior about recklessly discovering stuff, especially without looking ahead and predicting the potential consequences of doing so (as Western civilization has failed to do every time)? Is not the clarity to refrain from unnecessary discovery (and, preliminarily, the ability to discern what is unnecessary) the true mark of intellectual superiority? We need to start looking at accumulation of knowledge the same way we look at accumulation of consumer products. The smart shopper is not the compulsive shopper who spends all their time browsing and who cannot resist buying (probably paying using credit cards) everything that catches their eye (but who is never satisfied by what is bought, instead only moving on to thinking about what to buy next), but the one who spends as little time and money as possible to buy strictly what is really needed (and is satisfied with this). Why should it be any different with knowledge?

Perhaps we should describe Westerners as compulsive discoverers? Our enemy Duchesne agrees with me about this, though of course he spins it positively:

https://www.eurocanadian.ca/2020/09/slovenian-magazine-interviews-ricardo-duchesne.html

Quote
In Faustian Man I expanded on the importance of Spengler in our understanding of the West. Spengler believed that Western civilization was driven by an unusually dynamic and expansive psyche, by a personality driven to go beyond the known and master the unknown, reach new territorial frontiers, new frontiers of knowledge, transcend all possibilities and reach the highest peaks of achievement. I used the example of exploration as an endeavour that could clearly bring out the essence of this Faustian spirit. A standard explanation for the unsurpassed European drive to explore every corner of the earth is that Europeans were just more rapacious in their thirst for wealth and domination of lands. But I argued that the history of exploration during and after the Enlightenment era offered us with an opportunity to apprehend the essence of this Faustian soul. For while it is difficult to disentangle the pursuit of economic goals, gold and lands, in the earlier explorations of the Portuguese and Spaniards, for example, we can clearly apprehend the non-economic, purely spiritual nature of this soul in the explorations that Europeans carried from about the 1700s onward, because from this point on we can see explorers who had no interest in wealth, but were driven by a will to discover, to be the first to climb that mountain, to cross that dessert, to reach the center of Antarctica, irrespective of the economic costs, the possibilities of trade, or even the scientific knowledge to be gained. My point is not that only in the unadulterated desire to explore do we witness the Faustian soul. The urge to accumulate wealth and advance knowledge may exhibit this Faustian will just as intensively. The difference is that in the desire to explore for its own sake we can see the West’s psyche striving to surpass the mundane preoccupations of ordinary life, comfort and liberal pleasantries, proving what it means to be a man of aristocratic character.

I of course utterly disagree with his use of the term "aristocratic character". The correct term is hubris. True aristocratic character is asceticism. We could even use the term intellectual asceticism to refer precisely to consciously refraining from unnecessary discovery/invention. Thus true intellectual superiority is intellectual asceticism.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2020, 03:24:51 am by 90sRetroFan »

rp

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2021, 10:44:42 am »
Going back to this article:
https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswithabang/2017/11/22/scientific-proof-is-a-myth/?sh=2c9e4aae2fb1

This paragraph says it all:
Quote
This doesn’t mean it’s impossible to know anything at all. To the contrary, in many ways,  scientific knowledge is the most “real” knowledge that we can possibly gain about the world . But in science, nothing is ever proven beyond a shadow of a doubt .

If something is not proven, how can it be accepted as truth?

rp

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2021, 09:34:35 pm »
Dumbass empiricist Richard Dawkins (Jew) refers to himself as a "rationalist" in the title of his latest book:
Science in the Soul: Selected Writings of a Passionate Rationalist.
https://books.google.com/books/about/Science_in_the_Soul.html?id=ZpkrDwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=kp_read_button&newbks=1&newbks_redir=0&gboemv=1

How long does he think he can fool us?

Zea_mays

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #6 on: May 05, 2021, 10:19:33 pm »
To offer some additional thoughts, beyond mere knowledge, I think Western Civilization is obsessed with expanding the amount of information in existence. More and more people seem to be satisfied merely by someone believing a statement is accurate knowledge, rather than having actual evidence to demonstrate a statement is likely to be accurate and therefore contribute to knowledge.


Today, generation of additional information is primarily done through "novel" research in academic institutions and private companies. "Novel research" from experimentation and other empirical methods is not even the only way to obtain knowledge.

Other ways include curation of existing information and synthesis/integration of existing information. In contrast to the preferred Western method, both of these contribute to knowledge by REDUCING the amount of information in circulation. (However, as I will mention, although these methods are useful, they do not guarantee truthfulness).

Curation involves collecting, organizing, and often providing a summary/commentary on the information for reference purposes. Knowledge is not of much use if people seeking it are unable to know about its existence in the first place, and if is is not shared with those who need/benefit from it.

The curator reduces the amount of knowledge in circulation by refusing to include low-quality information in the collection. (Although they would increase access to knowledge, via the act of organizing everything into a collection). In addition, they reduce the amount of redundant information circulating by collecting similar information and grouping it by theme/topic, etc. This reduces information because, generally, the core collection would only retain whichever information is the most knowledgeable and the best examination of a topic (rather than including EVERYTHING ever written on a topic).

Curators generally do not produce additional "novel" knowledge. Instead, they prefer to gain a broader understanding of the massive amount of information already in existence, which is more than any person could possibly learn in a single lifetime. Examples of curators include librarians and collectors of art, coins, etc. (who delve deeper into the subject by studying existing art, etc., rather than sharing new material).

The librarian/curator may not directly contribute to the understanding of the truth, but they can serve as a resource to point a dedicated truth-seeker in a meaningful direction. (To go on a tangent, curators can also point truth-seekers in the WRONG direction. Mainstream/Alternative media (curators of information regarding current events) can lie by omission, report on a very biased selection/curation of events in order to shape people's views, etc. So, curation is not a way to obtain truth in and of itself, but merely a tool which can help if used sincerely).

By Western academic standards, I think curation is rarely considered a "novel" project, and therefore little is invested in it. Unless it can be used to serve as a database for further empirical investigations. (But even in these cases, there are so many redundant projects, because the database managers don't work together to curate things and reduce the complexity of existing databases!)


Then, there is the synthesis of existing information. Broadly, individuals who do this are subject matter experts who dig deeply into existing knowledge. There is more information in circulation than any human can possibly read/view in a single lifetime. Subject matter experts specialize in a topic and (1) integrate the most important knowledge into a cohesive treatise or summary (so other people don't need to spend a lifetime reading all the same things just to get a rigorous understanding of the topic!) and (2) convey the value of the knowledge and the purpose of why someone would want to bother to learn it in the first place.

Examples of this would be when a film critic watches hundreds of films and then is able to review them by recommending high-quality ones and telling us to not waste our time with the low-quality ones. Historians would be another good example of this--they go through countless old records in order to integrate them into a narrative. But in the Western academic system, even historians are generally expected to produce additional "novel" information, rather than simply making an expert synthesis of already-existing topics and knowledge. Ancient historians are even better, since instead of focusing on producing novel knowledge, they focused on _paring down_ the amount of extraneous details and also focusing on ethical lessons.

The biggest criticism of students learning history are usually "why do we have to learn this" and "what's the point in memorizing this list of names and dates". Pedagogues of the Western system can never give a satisfactory answer to these questions. The ancient historians answer by saying: here's why it is worthwhile to learn this story/legend/myth, and I will present only the details necessary for understanding the story.

(To go on another tangent, enemy agents posing as impartial subject-matter experts, such as historians, can attempt to REDUCE THE AMOUNT OF TRUTHFUL INFORMATION IN CIRCULATION. They are dangerous, because in order to effectively control the narrative they genuinely do have to be experts in the subject they are deployed in. So, like curators, subject-matter experts provide knowledge, and may not always present impartial and fully truthful information.)

I think another important function of integrating already existing knowledge is that there is a ton of "old" research, opinions, and information that are actually still insightful today. By Western academic standards, studying "old" knowledge (e.g. generally academic papers older than 20+ years or so) is frown upon as a waste of time. Yet these academics will praise people like Newton or Darwin for being foundational for a field, and few have actually read their works.

In my own study of 125-year-old bio-anthropology works, I discovered these old scientists had better arguments against ethno-tribalism than present-day biologists. Yet no mainstream biologists and sociologists seem to know about this because they never bother to dig deeply into the knowledge that already exists! How wasteful to have to reinvent the wheel every generation because people are addicted to generating piles of new information.

Especially with the tendency to view history as a "march of progress", they view it as below them to examine "outdated", "backwards", and "crude" information from the past. In their egotistical pursuit of producing their own "novel" knowledge, they ignore all the knowledge that has already been generated. Even for academics who aren't so egotistical, they simply don't have time to read it all when they have dedicated all their energy to producing new knowledge. Ironically, by continuing to produce "novel" knowledge regardless of its quality or purpose, they compound the problem by producing so much new information that it becomes difficult even for subject matter experts to study old information when they get buried by all the new information being produced.

Meanwhile, in pre-Renaissance academic circles, a small handful of treatises written by subject matter experts were sometimes used for over a thousand years with minimal changes. In terms of truth, it is easier to demonstrate and do damage control on the falsehoods from a small collection of information that is not growing rapidly, compared to the deluge of information pumped out by the Western academic system. During the effort it takes to demonstrate a single thing to be a untrue, a hundred more pieces of information take its place.


In fact, the Western academic system has become so obsessed with producing massive quantities of additional "novel" information, that they have even stopped following the scientific method (which requires _repeated_ experiments/observations on the same specific topic in order to provide enough evidence for something to be considered accurate knowledge)! In other words, if the Renaissance caused the mere quantity of knowledge (generated via empiricism/scientific method) to eclipse the importance of truth, at some point along the line Western civilization began to value the sheer QUANTITY OF INFORMATION CREATED over even accurate knowledge itself.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Replication_crisis


Any thoughts on this?

There is probably a decent amount of overlap between what a curator and "subject-matter expert" do, but I think we can summarize it by saying a curator collects/gathers the existing data together and gives it some order/organization. They understand things broadly, but not necessarily in exhaustive depth. (For example, if you ask a librarian if they have information on X topic, they would be able to point you in the correct direction for the information you're looking for, even if they've never read much on that topic. A museum curator would have a good grasp on history and different cultures and how they all relate together in terms of time period and geography, but they wouldn't necessarily be a world-renown expert in any specific culture).

The subject-matter expert would typically consult multiple curated collections (in addition to doing their own searches through raw and uncurated data) in order to find information to further pare down. If the subject-matter expert is a sincere truth-seeker, the amount of extraneous knowledge in existence can be safely phased out (which is what ancient historians did by passing history into mythology). Future generations of truth-seekers would then consult the work of previous subject-matter experts when learning information, although they would have to conduct their own examination of it to verify it is indeed accurate and truthful. Blindly trusting previous subject-matter experts merely because they were recognized/designated as subject-matter experts is just traditionalism! Moreover, simply because they were experts sincerely seeking the truth doesn't mean they got EVERYTHING correct. We acknowledge their mistakes and attempt to correct them where they went wrong.

Any thoughts on how to discover and what to do if the subject-matter expert is actually a propagandist trying to obscure the truth? I guess one of the first steps could be to examine the character/ideological views of the individual. If it appears they have some ulterior motives or ignoble worldview, we would have to scrutinize their claims through different techniques. Maybe this is too much of an epistemological question.

90sRetroFan

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2021, 01:28:52 am »
"The curator reduces the amount of knowledge in circulation by refusing to include low-quality information in the collection."

Curation is the accurate term for the process that present-day rightists wrongly refer to as "censorship" (as done by private organizations, which by definition is not censorship). We should use this word more! Every time rightists claim that they are being "censored" by [insert platform here], we can tell them they are in fact being curated ;D

"There is more information in circulation than any human can possibly read/view in a single lifetime."

This is a very important point. A long time ago, I proved that it is generally impossible for any two communicating people to fully understand each other unless both are exposed to essentially the same subset of information. This is because, as soon as two people are exposed to different subsets of information, it is generally impossible to determine with certainty whether a disagreement between them on a given issue is due solely to difference in personality, solely to difference in the information they possess on that issue, or some particular combination of the two.

This is why civilizations which Westerners would call "less knowledgeable" actually enabled people to engage in higher-quality communication. Having less information in circulation, communicators could much more quickly diagnose the source of any disagreements. Westernization, in injecting so much more information into circulation, ensured this was no longer possible. People today are still aware that they disagree, but are no longer able to easily figure out why. (Instead, they are merely advised to be "tolerant".)

"I discovered these old scientists had better arguments against ethno-tribalism than present-day biologists. Yet no mainstream biologists and sociologists seem to know about this"

Please present these somewhere when you have time.

"Especially with the tendency to view history as a "march of progress", they view it as below them to examine "outdated", "backwards", and "crude" information from the past."

We could even argue a parallel between this and its counterpart in finance where savings are devalued over time by an utterly insane phenomenon called "inflation". What you are describing could be called informational inflation.

"In their egotistical pursuit of producing their own "novel" knowledge"

This is driven by the ultimate Western academic prestige of getting a theory/equation/method/etc. named after oneself, thus having one's name immortalized. We could call this academic Achilleanism.

"Ironically, by continuing to produce "novel" knowledge regardless of its quality or purpose, they compound the problem by producing so much new information that it becomes difficult even for subject matter experts to study old information when they get buried by all the new information being produced.
...
In terms of truth, it is easier to demonstrate and do damage control on the falsehoods from a small collection of information that is not growing rapidly, compared to the deluge of information pumped out by the Western academic system. During the effort it takes to demonstrate a single thing to be a untrue, a hundred more pieces of information take its place."

This is one of the recurring themes of Western civilization!

"Any thoughts on how to discover and what to do if the subject-matter expert is actually a propagandist trying to obscure the truth?"

Self-proclaimed subject-matter experts should only be recognized as subject-matter experts if their treatises accurately represent all requested opposing arguments to the narrative they themselves favour. Intellectually dishonest experts tend to include strawman opposing arguments while either ignoring or misrepresenting arguments that are actually dangerous to their narrative. But if those who do this are called out on it, they must either respond by incorporating accurately the opposing argument offered or else fail to be taken seriously.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2021, 01:33:05 am by 90sRetroFan »

guest5

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2021, 09:45:39 pm »
I'm also reminded of Western legalese after reading the above comments, and laws and bills introduced in Western style parliamentary governments that occupy thousands upon thousands of pages that no one ever has the time to read by themselves. As an example, wasn't the actual Obama Care bill over 10,000 pages long? I've always believed that if a lawmaker cannot write a law onto 10 or less pages that anyone can understand and read then that law should be scrapped and never be brought into existence in the first place.




guest5

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2021, 10:46:06 pm »
This belongs here as well I think as a reminder considering Judeo-Freemasonry is a Western construct:



Note, not the "pursuit of truth" but of "knowledge"...


Zea_mays

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2021, 02:39:26 am »
Quote
We should use this word more! Every time rightists claim that they are being "censored" by [insert platform here], we can tell them they are in fact being curated

Indeed.

Quote
"I discovered these old scientists had better arguments against ethno-tribalism than present-day biologists. Yet no mainstream biologists and sociologists seem to know about this"

Please present these somewhere when you have time.

I posted it here:
https://trueleft.createaforum.com/colonial-era/the-'black'-and-'white'-identity-politics-scam/msg6246/#msg6246


Quote
What you are describing could be called informational inflation.

Yes, that's a great idea.


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I forgot to include this as well! Again, quantity of knowledge is not enough to satisfy them. Quantity of distributed information (via academically-published journal articles) is more important than the creation of the knowledge itself. The perception/consensus that the publication contains accurate knowledge (via the peer review process, which isn't really effective at ensuring the information is accurate knowledge) is more important than whether or not anyone can understand and confirm if the knowledge is accurate:

Quote
"Publish or perish" is an aphorism describing the pressure to publish academic work in order to succeed in an academic career.[1][2][3] Such institutional pressure is generally strongest at research universities.[4] Some researchers have identified the publish or perish environment as a contributing factor to the replication crisis.

Successful publications bring attention to scholars and their sponsoring institutions, which can help continued funding and their careers. In popular academic perception, scholars who publish infrequently, or who focus on activities that do not result in publications, such as instructing undergraduates, may lose ground in competition for available tenure-track positions. The pressure to publish has been cited as a cause of poor work being submitted to academic journals.[5] The value of published work is often determined by the prestige of the academic journal it is published in. Journals can be measured by their impact factor (IF), which is the average number of citations to articles published in a particular journal.[6]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Publish_or_perish


To really drive this point into the ground:

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In academic publishing, the least publishable unit (LPU),...is the smallest measurable quantum of publication, the minimum amount of information that can be used to generate a publication in a peer-reviewed venue, such as a journal or a conference. ...The term is often used as a joking, ironic, or derogatory reference to the strategy of artificially inflating quantity of publications.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Least_publishable_unit


They have apparently even created new subfields dedicated solely to salivating over how much information they create:

Quote
Citation impact is a measure of how many times an academic journal article or book or author is cited by other articles, books or authors.[1][2][3][4][5] Citation counts are interpreted as measures of the impact or influence of academic work and have given rise to the field of bibliometrics or scientometrics,[6][7] specializing in the study of patterns of academic impact through citation analysis.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citation_impact
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bibliometrics
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientometrics
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H-index


Imagine living 1,000 years ago when you could just...read every single thing that was ever deemed high enough quality to merit scribes spending hundreds of hours copying it onto very expensive paper, and judge its quality and "impact" for yourself.


A communist critique of the current information addiction, although it raises some important points:

Quote
Historian Russell Jacoby, writing in the 1970s, observes that intellectual production has succumbed to the same pattern of planned obsolescence used by manufacturing enterprises to generate renewed demand for their products.

    The application of planned obsolescence to thought itself has the same merit as its application to consumer goods; the new is not only shoddier than the old, it fuels an obsolete social system that staves off its replacement by manufacturing the illusion that it is perpetually new.[6]

Jacoby laments the demise of the radical critical theory of the previous generation, which sought to understand and articulate the contradictions inherent in bourgeois and liberal democratic ideologies. The new generation of theories, in contrast, seek to allow the contradictory elements of the ideology to coexist by isolating them, assigning them to separate departments in the university. This division of intellectual labor in the service of the prevailing ideology, Jacoby says, "severs the life nerve of dialectical thought."[7]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Academic_careerism#Russell_Jacoby's_criticisms_of_contemporary_academia

The last paragraph is a very important point. In the ancient world, "philosophy" included the study of all subjects. A skilled philosopher was well-acquainted with every field of knowledge. At some point after the Renaissance, there was so much knowledge that not even the smartest and most dedicated scholar could possibly learn and understand everything.

Fields became specialized and compartmentalized. A scholar could not be an expert in every subject, although they could still probably learn much from each subject if they had the interest. Today, we have basically reached "hyper-specialization". Scientists who study one specialization within a subject are not even able to understand the concepts and the real meaning of the data used in other specializations within their subject! It is frequently the case that scientists will present their work at an academic conference (to an audience of other scientists in their field), and often no one outside of their hyper-specialization will understand their presentation at all.

For example, here are subfields within physics. I doubt that an expert in a subfield would be able to understand the cutting-edge research from another subfield within their own "field".
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physics#Research_fields

Here's a similar list for biology. I think this would only be equivalent to the "field" classification on the physics Wikipedia page.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biology#Branches_and_career_options

Quote
From the ancient world, starting with Aristotle, to the 19th century, natural philosophy was the common term for the practice of studying nature. It was in the 19th century that the concept of "science" received its modern shape with new titles emerging such as "biology" and "biologist", "physics" and "physicist" among other technical fields and titles; institutions and communities were founded, and unprecedented applications to and interactions with other aspects of society and culture occurred.[1]
[...]
The term natural philosophy preceded current usage of natural science (i.e. empirical science). Empirical science historically developed out of philosophy or, more specifically, natural philosophy. Natural philosophy was distinguished from the other precursor of modern science, natural history, in that natural philosophy involved reasoning and explanations about nature (and after Galileo, quantitative reasoning), whereas natural history was essentially qualitative and descriptive.

In the 14th and 15th centuries, natural philosophy was one of many branches of philosophy, but was not a specialized field of study. The first person appointed as a specialist in Natural Philosophy per se was Jacopo Zabarella, at the University of Padua in 1577.

Modern meanings of the terms science and scientists date only to the 19th century. Before that, science was a synonym for knowledge or study, in keeping with its Latin origin. The term gained its modern meaning when experimental science and the scientific method became a specialized branch of study apart from natural philosophy.[2]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_philosophy

--
I also came across this, which may be some food for thought in examining alternatives to the present-day approach to science:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slow_movement_(culture)#Science


rp

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2021, 10:22:30 am »
Rightist meme exalts empiricism while ridiculing rationalism:
« Last Edit: July 02, 2021, 10:26:13 am by rp »

Zea_mays

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2022, 07:45:31 am »
This is something I think about a lot. Instead of necessity driving invention, Western Civilization discovers unnecessary knowledge first, and then makes up unnecessary inventions to use these technological advancements.
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There was no practical value in science back then - you have to remember that all the way until the 19th century, technology and science were separate fields, because it wasn't until then that science caught up with technological progress.

The example I remember my professor giving was that by the time a scientific explanation for he optimal firing arc of a cannon had been made, cannoneers had already known of it for hundreds of years.

Simple observation, rule of thumb and trial and error was (with a few exceptions) the foundation for all technology and architecture for the vast majority of history. Architects and engineers couldn't explain WHY things worked like they did, just that they did.

Science was, in practical terms, basically a bunch of rich nerds trying to explain stuff that didn't really need explaining.
https://old.reddit.com/r/todayilearned/comments/tw1xlu/til_that_while_impressed_by_his_book_philosophiae/i3dzhkx/

90sRetroFan

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2022, 09:37:47 pm »
"Instead of necessity driving invention, Western Civilization discovers unnecessary knowledge first"

Westerners have a compulsion to fill space, whether it is physical space, informational space, space inside a painting or any other kind of space. We have identified this as a characteristic of Yahweh-worship:



https://trueleft.createaforum.com/true-left-vs-false-left/progressive-yahwism/msg9346/#msg9346

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This also goes back to what I was saying here:

https://trueleft.createaforum.com/true-left-vs-right/western-civilization-sustainable-evil/msg9999/#msg9999

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I am tired of False Leftists presenting curiosity as a positive trait.
...
does anyone dispute that Western civilization is the most curious civilization?

But the confusion further worsens when some False Leftists (clumsily attempting to praise children) claim that children are curious. Are children really curious? No, they are not. For a simple example, when children move into a new house, they will certainly want to leave no room in the house unchecked. This is what gets crudely mislabelled as "curiosity" by False Leftists. What the False Leftists neglect is the that children hate moving houses in the first place; they would almost always rather stay in the house they have already become familiar with. It is adults who like the idea of moving houses.

Children are philosophical, not curious. Children are disturbed by not understanding what is going on, but would prefer the truth to turn out to be more simple rather than more complicated. In contrast, the progressive Yahwists in the other topic want to ensure that they forever keep creating new complexity on higher and higher orders so that they never run out of things to accumulatively understand. The difference between these two attitudes is the difference between philosophy and curiosity.

To the extent that Western civilization is more curious than non-Western civilizations, we can safely say that Western civilization is more adultlike than non-Western civilizations, something I previously also noted in aesthetics:

https://trueleft.createaforum.com/true-left-vs-right/western-civilization-is-ugly-48/msg6238/?topicseen#msg6238

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Another way to describe Western aesthetics is as more adultlike. This is clearly the case for painting, as young children spontaneously draw in 2D:

and non-Western painting is mostly 2D, whereas Western painting tries to be as 3D as possible:

https://trueleft.createaforum.com/true-left-vs-right/western-civilization-is-ugly-48/msg3980/#msg3980

But I would say the same is true of other forms. For example, you say:

"I find Pueblo architecture quite beautiful."

but would you furthermore agree that it is more childlike?

https://www.cardcow.com/images/set655/card00864_fr.jpg

Conversely, would you agree that Western architecture is by far the most adultlike?

https://daytonperformingarts.org/wp-content/uploads/1920_A_Performance_Images/1920_A_OP4_Baroque.jpg

I believe that Western civilization considers itself superior to non-Western civilizations in the same sense that adults consider themselves superior to children. And just as children have been mostly conditioned to agree that adults really are superior by accepting the adult standards of superiority, non-Western civilizations have similarly been mostly conditioned to agree that Western civilization is superior by accepting Western standards of superiority. Only we can see that the truth is the complete opposite. This:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ho9rZjlsyYY

is inferior to this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-R8kWA6jItE

Related:

https://trueleft.createaforum.com/true-left-vs-false-left/progressive-yahwism/msg13288/#msg13288

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The unspoken assumption underlying his claim is that a thing has to be new in order to not be boring. This is a progressive assumption, which we disagree with. I find that many new things are boring despite being new, whereas many old things are not boring despite being old. This is because I am an absolutist. Whatever is boring will always continue to be boring, and whatever is not boring will never become boring. Whether or not something is boring to me is determined by the quality of the thing itself, and unrelated to how familiar I am with it. Musk, in contrast, lacks such perception. To him, what is boring is anything that he has become too familiar with.

Thus someone like Musk can never be satisfied, because everything that exists at any point in time will become boring to him eventually, whereupon he will desire even more innovation, over and over again without end. In contrast, someone like me can be satisfied forever simply by successfully finding the quality I seek.

In short, Musk worships Yahweh whereas I worship God.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2022, 09:54:36 pm by 90sRetroFan »

guest30

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Re: Truth =/= knowledge
« Reply #14 on: August 01, 2022, 07:05:36 pm »
Usually, the people with Western mindset always talking about the validity of primary sources from the information which we provide, rather than think and talk whether our information are true logically and empathically or not. Even though it's got from non-primary sources.