numbers vs. words

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kennethamy
 
Reply Sun 2 May, 2010 07:01 pm
@Ahab,
Ahab;159420 wrote:
You misquote.
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore.":bigsmile:

---------- Post added 05-02-2010 at 04:21 PM ----------







When I refer to Sherlock Holmes, I am referring to that particular ficitonal character. The stories of Sherlock Holmes are the products of Mr. Doyle's imagination just as the characters in those stories are products of his imagination.

I can refer to the individual stories just as well as I can refer to the events and characters that are to be found in those stories.I can even take those characters and events and place them in other stories.

I don't understand what you are objecting to here.


Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
`'Tis some visitor,' I muttered, `tapping at my chamber door -
Only this, and nothing more.'



I don't understand what you are objecting to here

Only your view that "empty names" succeed in referring. For the reason that "empty names" are names that have no referents, and so, do not refer. For they have nothing to refer to.

I don't understand what you are asking when you ask me about treating all empty names the same. You will have to be more specific. I was only pointing out that when I say that Mr. Clean has finally entered my son's bedroom I am not referring to any person, "Mr. Clean", and that I am just saying (perhaps with heavy-handed sarcasm) that my son has finally picked up his room. It is a manner of speaking. What the French call, a "facon de parler". I suppose that what I object to is your treating my facon de parler literally. Or quasi-literally. As if I were referring to an actual Mr. Clean. For I am obviously doing no such thing.
 
Extrain
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 12:10 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;159318 wrote:
You said nothing about what does not exist. Was that an intentional omission?


Yes. I don't think that's problematic, though. Why would I want to say something in formal logic that implied something existed when I really don't think it does?

I think what I said is not technically correct, however, since stories are fictional, and stories exist. So the predicate "fictional" applies to some things that exist. So I would have to spell out something more definite with respect to descriptions like "Santa Claus" such as,

~Ex (Fx and Ay(Fy-->y=x) and Wears-Black-boots(x) and Lives-at-the-North Pole(x) and Delivers-presents-to-children-on-christmas(x) and...)

kennethamy;159318 wrote:
Could everything that does not exist be fictional?


Colloquially, I guess. But then again, it is not the case that anything which does not exist is fictional: all of this is just a sloppy way of talking which I try to avoid.

So I would have to quantify what you are driving at existentially-negated (~Ex) with a potentially infinite amount of conjunctive statements with respect to every character in every fictional story. I don't think it is even logically possible to quantify that kind of statement with a universal quantifier (Ax) anyway.

However, I also noticed it is true that it is not the case that everything which exists is not fictional, so "(Ax)~Fx" is literally false. So I guess I would really be committed to the truths of (Ex)Fx and (Ex)~Fx.

So the logically equivalent "(~Ex)Fx" of "(Ax)~Fx" is literally false, too. So I was mistaken.

Thanks for pointing out that I needed to specify much more, here. I find this interesting trying to quantify logically what we are really saying in these matters. This approach certainly helps me to understand the fictional landscape better.
 
Ahab
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 07:50 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;159450 wrote:
Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
`'Tis some visitor,' I muttered, `tapping at my chamber door -
Only this, and nothing more.'


So quoth the poem's narrator: 'Only this and nothing more.'
Not quoth the raven.:bigsmile:
 
Extrain
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 07:59 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;159318 wrote:
Could everything that does not exist be fictional?


How would we formalize that in logic? Any ideas?

This kind of statement is disturbing. Can you make any sense of it?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 08:00 am
@Ahab,
Ahab;159539 wrote:
So quoth the poem's narrator: 'Only this and nothing more.'
Not quoth the raven.:bigsmile:


Yes, of course. Poetic license.
 
Extrain
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 08:01 am
@Ahab,
Ahab;159539 wrote:
So quoth the poem's narrator: 'Only this and nothing more.'
Not quoth the raven.:bigsmile:


So the Edgar Poe Raven never quoted this? This implication might *nudge* your own theory, but not anyone else's, I think.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 08:04 am
@Extrain,
Extrain;159541 wrote:
How would we formalize that in logic? Any ideas?

This kind of statement is disturbing. Can you make any sense of it?


I suppose so. Not everything that does not exist is fictional, after all. My sister does not exist, but she is not fictional. There is no story with my sister as a character.

Of course, the notion that there are some non-existents is problematic. Very problematic! One problem with it is that it is self-contradictory.
 
Extrain
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 08:10 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;159544 wrote:
I suppose so. Not everything that does not exist is fictional, after all.


But anything that does not exist and is fictional, exists: Contradiction. So how can anything that does not exist even be fictional?

kennethamy;159544 wrote:
My sister does not exist, but she is not fictional.


Can we not still say true things about an existent Nixon in past-tense? Even if whatever we said about Nixon in the present tense would be false, Nixon surely once existed, right?

kennethamy;159544 wrote:
There is no story with my sister as a character.


True. But is it not because your sister never was a fictional character? She still existed.

---------- Post added 05-03-2010 at 08:17 AM ----------

kennethamy;159544 wrote:
Of course, the notion that there are some non-existents is problematic. Very problematic! One problem with it is that it is self-contradictory.


Yes, indeed. I am not sure I can make sense of it. In fact, I am pretty sure I can't!
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 09:32 am
@Extrain,
Extrain;159553 wrote:
But anything that does not exist and is fictional, exists: Contradiction. So how can anything that does not exist even be fictional?



Can we not still say true things about an existent Nixon in past-tense? Even if whatever we said about Nixon in the present tense would be false, Nixon surely once existed, right?



True. But is it not because your sister never was a fictional character? She still existed.

---------- Post added 05-03-2010 at 08:17 AM ----------



Yes, indeed. I am not sure I can make sense of it. In fact, I am pretty sure I can't!


The more I think about this, the more I think that Quine was right about deep-sixing the term, "exist", and sticking to the natural language equivalent to the existential quantifiers, "there is" and "there are". Look at all the confusion we could avoid.
 
Extrain
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 09:35 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;159580 wrote:
The more I think about this, the more I think that Quine was right about deep-sixing the term, "exist", and sticking to the natural language equivalent to the existential quantifiers, "there is" and "there are". Look at all the confusion we could avoid.


I agree. But I can't tell if I said something with which you disagree...?

Do you think there is something wrong with pre-fixing tenses to existential propositions?
 
Ahab
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 10:19 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;159542 wrote:
Yes, of course. Poetic license.


I didn't know you'd written a poem about Poe's raven.
Care to share it with us?:bigsmile:
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 11:09 am
@cws910,
[QUOTE=Extrain;159553]Can we not still say true things about an existent Nixon in past-tense? Even if whatever we said about Nixon in the present tense would be false, Nixon surely once existed, right?[/QUOTE]Kennethamy never had a sister. Recall, he said, "My sister does not exist, but she is not fictional." When he says, "My sister does not exist," you have misinterpreted that to mean she is deceased, but she isn't deceased, for he never had a sister. And that fact, I presume, causes you to reexamine (with curiosity) the sentence, "My sister does not exist." Do you think it's shorthand for "My sister [that exists] does not exist"? I don't think that. Has he violated the rule of existential introduction?

And yes, Nixon exists. You haven't asked, but you would eventually have gotten around to asking.

---------- Post added 05-03-2010 at 01:18 PM ----------

Ahab;159335 wrote:
Yes, you are correct in stating that your usage is in accordance with standard usage. I was mistaken to say that you were stipulating a new usage. Sorry.
No problem. You know that. Smile
 
Extrain
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 01:24 pm
@fast,
fast;159589 wrote:
Kennethamy never had a sister. Recall, he said, "My sister does not exist, but she is not fictional." When he says, "My sister does not exist," you have misinterpreted that to mean she is deceased, but she isn't deceased, for he never had a sister. And that fact, I presume, causes you to reexamine (with curiosity) the sentence, "My sister does not exist." Do you think it's shorthand for "My sister [that exists] does not exist"? I don't think that. Has he violated the rule of existential introduction?


I am not sure what your point is. Did he ever have a sister? If the answer is "no," then he never had a sister. period.

"My sister does not exist" as uttered by Kennethamy gets translated logically into,

~(Ex) Kennethamy's-Sister(x)
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 01:37 pm
@Extrain,
[QUOTE=Extrain;159629]I am not sure what your point is. Did he ever have a sister? If the answer is "no," then he never had a sister. period.[/QUOTE]I came to the conclusion that he does not have (nor ever has had) a sister, and I base that conclusion off of what he says, and what he says is, "My sister does not exist, but she is not fictional." I bet you didn't come to that same conclusion, did you? But, you did respond about Nixon. I also bet you think Nixon doesn't exist, and like I said, he does. He is the 37th President, is he not?

---------- Post added 05-03-2010 at 03:43 PM ----------

[QUOTE=Extrain;159629]~(Ex) Kennethamy's-Sister(x)[/QUOTE]
I don't know what that means, but if it means that it is not the case that Kennethamy has a sister, then I agree, but none of this was the point.

The point is it's not the case that Kennethamy has a sister, and it's also not the case that his sister is fictional. In other words, Kennethamy does not have a sister, and Kennethamy's sister is not fictional.

My point is that I thought that you thought that "Kennethamy's sister is not fictional" implies that Kennethamy has a sister, and that is why I asked about the logical rule and if you think he violated it.

My other ancillary point was that you confused what it means to say of something that it exists; hence you bringing up Nixon.
 
Extrain
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 02:00 pm
@fast,
fast;159631 wrote:
I came to the conclusion that he does not have (nor ever has had) a sister, and I base that conclusion off of what he says, and what he says is, "My sister does not exist, but she is not fictional." I bet you didn't come to that same conclusion, did you?
I just thought he was implying he has a deceased sister. But if he never had a sister, then fine.

But if someone thinks Santa Claus does not exist, then he should be saying more strictly,

It is not the case there is a Santa Claus: ~(Ex) Sx

But it is just plain wrong to say things like, "Santa Claus is fictional." That does violate logic because it says there is something that is Santa Claus and is fictional: (Ex) (Sx and Fx). But this is clearly false.

[QUOTE=fast;159631] But, you did respond about Nixon. I also bet you think Nixon doesn't exist, and like I said, he does. He is the 37th President, is he not?[/QUOTE]I agree. Again, I just thought Kennethamy was implying he has a sister who is now deceased, on the same lines that Nixon used to be president of the USA.

[QUOTE=fast;159631] The point is it's not the case that Kennethamy has a sister,[/QUOTE]True.
[QUOTE=fast;159631] and it's also not the case that his sister is fictional.[/QUOTE]False. Now you are saying that Ken has a sister that is not fictional. Or, that it is not the case that his sister is fictional, which either means,

(Ex) (Sx and ~Fx) or
(Ex) ~(Sx and Fx)

Either way you are implying his sister exists.
[QUOTE=fast;159631] In other words, Kennethamy does not have a sister,[/QUOTE]True.

[QUOTE=fast;159631]and Kennethamy's sister is not fictional.[/QUOTE]
False again. You are saying Ken has a sister that is not fictional.

[QUOTE=fast;159631] My point is that I thought that you thought that "Kennethamy's sister is not fictional" implies that Kennethamy has a sister, and that is why I asked about the logical rule and if you think he violated it.[/QUOTE]That's what it does imply. It's false if he never had a sister.

"Ken has a sister that is fictional" is false.
"Ken has a sister that is not fictional" is false.

Both are false because Ken does not have a sister, and never had one.

[QUOTE=fast;159631]My other ancillary point was that you confused what it means to say of something that it exists; hence you bringing up Nixon.[/QUOTE]I've dealt with these issues long enough in my educational philosophical career that I am confident what I am saying is correct. I wish you would stop presuming I am confused. I am not.
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 02:09 pm
@Extrain,
Quote:
I've dealt with these issues long enough in my educational philosophical career that I am confident what I am saying is correct. I wish you would stop presuming I am confused. I am not.
Does Nixon (the 37th President) exist?
 
Extrain
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 02:17 pm
@fast,
fast;159642 wrote:
Does Nixon (the 37th President) exist?


How someone would answer that depends on at least his view of two things:

(1) His view of the reality of the past, present, and future. Some people think only the present time exists and nothing else...etc.
(2) His metaphysical criterion for personal identity.

My own "religious" beliefs influence how I interpret that. But I can work with different theories of propositions and reference for people who think when Nixon died he ceased to exist. So the question, more appropriately, is, "what do you think"?...And I will tell you how to formulate that.
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 02:19 pm
@Extrain,
edited out
.................
 
Extrain
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 02:24 pm
@fast,
fast;159645 wrote:
It's wrong but only because it's false. It's not wrong for why you say it's wrong.
I agree it is false. But Please Explain why I am mistaken with respect to whatever you are accusing me of...

[QUOTE=fast;159645]If I say, "Kennethamy's sister is 76 years old," then I am stating that Kennethamy has a sister and that his sister is 76 years old, but that I say it doesn't make it so. We ought not infer that Kennethamy has a sister because I say he does, nor should we infer that he has a sister because of sentence structure. [/QUOTE]huh?

If someone says, "My brother is not fictional" I take him to mean he has a brother who really exists. He might as well just say, "I have a brother." Or, "My brother exists."
 
fast
 
Reply Mon 3 May, 2010 02:33 pm
@Extrain,
Extrain;159647 wrote:
I agree it is false. But Please Explain why I am mistaken with respect to whatever you are accusing me of...

huh?

If someone says, "My brother is not fictional" I take him to mean he has a brother who really exists. He might as well just say, "I have a brother." Or, "My brother exists."

I edited all that out. I wrote it too quick. I just don't think that we should infer that there were red cars in my driveway this morning just because I said that I ate every red car in my driveway this morning.
 
 

 
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