tsuomela + truth   63

True Enough | The MIT Press
"The development of an epistemology that explains how science and art embody and convey understanding. Philosophy valorizes truth, holding that there can never be epistemically good reasons to accept a known falsehood, or to accept modes of justification that are not truth conducive. How can this stance account for the epistemic standing of science, which unabashedly relies on models, idealizations, and thought experiments that are known not to be true? In True Enough, Catherine Elgin argues that we should not assume that the inaccuracy of models and idealizations constitutes an inadequacy. To the contrary, their divergence from truth or representational accuracy fosters their epistemic functioning. When effective, models and idealizations are, Elgin contends, felicitous falsehoods that exemplify features of the phenomena they bear on. Because works of art deploy the same sorts of felicitous falsehoods, she argues, they also advance understanding. Elgin develops a holistic epistemology that focuses on the understanding of broad ranges of phenomena rather than knowledge of individual facts. Epistemic acceptability, she maintains, is a matter not of truth-conduciveness, but of what would be reflectively endorsed by the members of an idealized epistemic community—a quasi-Kantian realm of epistemic ends."
book  publisher  epistemology  philosophy  truth 
november 2018 by tsuomela
Understanding Ignorance | The MIT Press
"An exploration of what we can know about what we don't know: why ignorance is more than simply a lack of knowledge. Ignorance is trending. Politicians boast, “I'm not a scientist.” Angry citizens object to a proposed state motto because it is in Latin, and “This is America, not Mexico or Latin America.” Lack of experience, not expertise, becomes a credential. Fake news and repeated falsehoods are accepted and shape firm belief. Ignorance about American government and history is so alarming that the ideal of an informed citizenry now seems quaint. Conspiracy theories and false knowledge thrive. This may be the Information Age, but we do not seem to be well informed. In this book, philosopher Daniel DeNicola explores ignorance—its abundance, its endurance, and its consequences. DeNicola aims to understand ignorance, which seems at first paradoxical. How can the unknown become known—and still be unknown? But he argues that ignorance is more than a lack or a void, and that it has dynamic and complex interactions with knowledge. Taking a broadly philosophical approach, DeNicola examines many forms of ignorance, using the metaphors of ignorance as place, boundary, limit, and horizon. He treats willful ignorance and describes the culture in which ignorance becomes an ideological stance. He discusses the ethics of ignorance, including the right not to know, considers the supposed virtues of ignorance, and concludes that there are situations in which ignorance is morally good. Ignorance is neither pure nor simple. It is both an accusation and a defense (“You are ignorant!” “Yes, but I didn't know!”). Its practical effects range from the inconsequential to the momentous. It is a scourge, but, DeNicola argues daringly, it may also be a refuge, a value, even an accompaniment to virtue. Hardcover Out of Print ISBN: 9780262036443 264 pp. | 6 in x 9 in August 2017 Paperback $17.95 T | £13.99 ISBN: 9780262536035 264 pp. | 6 in x 9 in September 2018 Share Share "
book  publisher  epistemology  philosophy  truth  ignorance  agnotology 
november 2018 by tsuomela
Truth Decay: An Initial Exploration of the Diminishing Role of Facts and Analysis in American Public Life | RAND
"Over the past two decades, national political and civil discourse in the United States has been characterized by "Truth Decay," defined as a set of four interrelated trends: an increasing disagreement about facts and analytical interpretations of facts and data; a blurring of the line between opinion and fact; an increase in the relative volume, and resulting influence, of opinion and personal experience over fact; and lowered trust in formerly respected sources of factual information. These trends have many causes, but this report focuses on four: characteristics of human cognitive processing, such as cognitive bias; changes in the information system, including social media and the 24-hour news cycle; competing demands on the education system that diminish time spent on media literacy and critical thinking; and polarization, both political and demographic. The most damaging consequences of Truth Decay include the erosion of civil discourse, political paralysis, alienation and disengagement of individuals from political and civic institutions, and uncertainty over national policy. This report explores the causes and consequences of Truth Decay and how they are interrelated, and examines past eras of U.S. history to identify evidence of Truth Decay's four trends and observe similarities with and differences from the current period. It also outlines a research agenda, a strategy for investigating the causes of Truth Decay and determining what can be done to address its causes and consequences. "
post-truth  polarization  political-science  communication  truth  facts  epistemology  social  epistemic-closure 
january 2018 by tsuomela
PLOS Medicine: Why Most Published Research Findings Are False
"There is increasing concern that most current published research findings are false. The probability that a research claim is true may depend on study power and bias, the number of other studies on the same question, and, importantly, the ratio of true to no relationships among the relationships probed in each scientific field. In this framework, a research finding is less likely to be true when the studies conducted in a field are smaller; when effect sizes are smaller; when there is a greater number and lesser preselection of tested relationships; where there is greater flexibility in designs, definitions, outcomes, and analytical modes; when there is greater financial and other interest and prejudice; and when more teams are involved in a scientific field in chase of statistical significance. Simulations show that for most study designs and settings, it is more likely for a research claim to be false than true. Moreover, for many current scientific fields, claimed research findings may often be simply accurate measures of the prevailing bias. In this essay, I discuss the implications of these problems for the conduct and interpretation of research."
research  methodology  methods  statistics  validation  truth  significance 
january 2014 by tsuomela
Is Scientific Materialism “Almost Certainly False”? | Cross-Check, Scientific American Blog Network
"Some scholars, notably philosopher Thomas Nagel, are so unimpressed with science that they are challenging its fundamental assumptions. In his new book Mind and Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature Is Almost Certainly False, Nagel contends that current scientific theories and methods can’t account for the emergence of life in general and one bipedal, big-brained species in particular. To solve these problems, Nagel asserts, science needs “a major conceptual revolution,” as radical as those precipitated by heliocentrism, evolution and relativity."
science  philosophy  consensus  materialism  evolution  truth  metaphysics 
january 2013 by tsuomela
What made the creationist footprints in the Giant's Causeway visitor centre? | Andrew Brown | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk
This is in some ways the cruellest insult to the creationists: it tells them that theirs is just another story, and not, as they need it to be, the truth. But the market doesn't recognise truth, only prices.
creationism  intelligent-design  truth  science  public  markets  standards  from delicious
july 2012 by tsuomela
How the Professor Who Fooled Wikipedia Got Caught by Reddit - Yoni Appelbaum - National - The Atlantic
"Each tale was carefully fabricated by undergraduates at George Mason University who were enrolled in T. Mills Kelly's course, Lying About the Past. Their escapades not only went unpunished, they were actually encouraged by their professor. Four years ago, students created a Wikipedia page detailing the exploits of Edward Owens, successfully fooling Wikipedia's community of editors. This year, though, one group of students made the mistake of launching their hoax on Reddit. What they learned in the process provides a valuable lesson for anyone who turns to the Internet for information. " Annotated link http://www.diigo.com/bookmark/http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2012/05/how-the-professor-who-fooled-wikipedia-got-caught-by-reddit/257134
online  truth  trust  wikipedia  learning  history  hoax  community  from delicious
may 2012 by tsuomela
Overcoming Bias : Far Truth Is For Extremes
"So assuming you actually have a viable choice, the situations where it makes sense to reject religion in favor of far truth are extreme – either there are big personally-useful far contrarian claims to learn, or you have a good shot at being a rare far expert, respected by a community with truth-correlated standards. So if such extremes seem unlikely to you, far truth probably isn’t worth its costs to you."
religion  belief  construal-level-theory  near-far  truth  benefits  psychology  atheism  from delicious
may 2012 by tsuomela
Fabulous journalism | Felix Salmon
"One of the central problems with narrative nonfiction is that the best narratives aren’t messy and complicated, while nonfiction nearly always is. Daisey stepped way too far over the line when he started outright lying to his audience and to the producers of This American Life. But all of us in the narrative-nonfiction business (I’ve written such stuff myself) are faced at some point with a choice between telling the story and telling the whole truth, or the whole truth as best we understand it. Someone like Michael Lewis will concentrate with a laser focus on the story: what he writes is the truth, but it isn’t the whole truth. And when you have a storyteller like Mike Daisey who considers himself a monologist rather than a journalist, even outright lies can find their way in to the story very easily."
truth  fiction  story-telling  journalism  apple  country(China)  business  from delicious
march 2012 by tsuomela
Obama’s Tax Cut: How Rush Limbaugh Misled the Country - The Daily Beast
We live in a mendocracy.
As in: rule by liars.
...
But the only number that matters is the one demonstrating that by a two-to-one margin likely voters thought their taxes had gone up, when, for almost all of them, they had actually gone down. Republican politicians, and conservative commentators, told them Barack Obama was a tax-mad lunatic. They lied.
politics  lying  truth  republicans  media  mendocracy  talk-shows 
november 2010 by tsuomela
Julian Assange: Life is Hard in a World Without Hippies | Death and Taxes
Assange may have been born at the wrong time. It’s as if he’s force-feeding truth to a world that has no stomach for it. An ally of no one, an ideological nomad, it’ll be interesting to see how long Assange’s voice keeps leaking the truth. Historically, leading voices of opposition—from Martin Luther King to Malcolm X to John Lennon—seem to have a way of getting silenced sooner or later.
counter-culture  1960s  hippies  wikileaks  truth  politics  expose 
november 2010 by tsuomela
Private Truths, Public Lies - Timur Kuran - Harvard University Press
Preference falsification, according to the economist Timur Kuran, is the act of misrepresenting one’s wants under perceived social pressures. It happens frequently in everyday life, such as when we tell the host of a dinner party that we are enjoying the food when we actually find it bland. In Private Truths, Public Lies Kuran argues convincingly that the phenomenon not only is ubiquitous but has huge social and political consequences. Drawing on diverse intellectual traditions, including those rooted in economics, psychology, sociology, and political science, Kuran provides a unified theory of how preference falsification shapes collective decisions, orients structural change, sustains social stability, distorts human knowledge, and conceals political possibilities.
economics  research  preference  lying  truth  false  behavior  behavioral-economics  social-psychology  social-proof  bandwagon 
july 2010 by tsuomela
Ming the Mechanic: Truth: superconductivity for scalable networks
Masses of people who need to keep up appearances, trying to adhere to norms they never consciously agreed to, are relatively easy to control. They can be rendered rather harmless, as they each pursue individual rewards that don't truly match what they need and want.

If we make collaborative tools that simply reinforce our inclination to keep up appearances, they won't go far. If they only help us exchange impressively sounding declarations, abstract positions and lists of accomplishments, they won't have accomplished much.

Collective intelligence has something to do with increasing the number of opportunities for stuff to connect up, and lowering the resistance to it happening. Lacking or incorrect information are forms of resistance. Correct and complete information decreases resistance and increases connections.
truth  collective-intelligence  collaboration  systems 
july 2010 by tsuomela
PressThink: The Quest for Innocence and the Loss of Reality in Political Journalism
My claim: We have come upon something interfering with political journalism’s “sense of reality” as the philosopher Isaiah Berlin called it. And I think I have a term for the confusing factor: a quest for innocence in reportage and dispute description. Innocence, meaning a determination not to be implicated, enlisted, or seen by the public as involved. That’s what created the pattern I’ve called “regression to a phony mean.” That’s what motivated the rise of he said, she said reporting.
media  journalism  politics  truth  criticism  innocence 
february 2010 by tsuomela
Goodbye HuffPost, Hello ScienceBlogs: Science as a Religion that Worships Truth as its God : Evolution for Everyone
Here are some insights that emerge from viewing science as a religion that worships truth as its god. First, being a scientist is not natural. We evolved to adopt beliefs when they are useful, not when then they are true, so being a scientist requires resisting temptation, just as religious believers must resist temptation to achieve the ideals of their faiths. Second, the ideals of science can only be achieved by an entire cultural system. Simply exhorting people to respect the truth is not good enough, just as exhorting people to do unto others isn't good enough. Third, science as practiced often falls short of the goals of science as idealized, just as religions as practiced fall short of the goals of religions as idealized.
science  religion  philosophy  truth 
october 2009 by tsuomela
How Time magazine enables Glenn Beck's lies | Media Matters for America
At the beginning of his article, Von Drehle referred to a recent poll that found "record-low levels of public trust of the mainstream media." Guess what? Articles like this are why nobody trusts the media. When you pretend that obviously false claims about crowd sizes are valid, people won't trust you. When you pretend that only liberals say 70,000 people actually attended last week's protest, people won't trust you. They shouldn't trust you. You aren't trustworthy. You are doing your job dishonestly and incompetently.
media  journalism  media-reform  truth  failure  politics 
september 2009 by tsuomela
slacktivist: An argument
An imagined argument that Sarah Palin is lying.
extremism  argument  form  lying  truth  fundamentalism 
august 2009 by tsuomela
Five New Rules for the Photoshop Era | Open The Future | Fast Company
If you're annoyed by the "birther" churn, get used it--this kind of political hack is here to stay. It's easy and effective. Cheap digital tools make the work of faking official documents, "candid" images, and behind-the-scenes videos readily possible, even for rough amateurs.
photography  epistemology  photoshop  photomontage  truth  veracity  philosophy  politics  extremism 
august 2009 by tsuomela
Notes From The Geek Show: Bukiet on Brooklyn Books
Hal Duncan discusses a review by Melvin Bukiet of the Brooklyn Books of Wonder - the current literary trend to use elements of the fantastic to avoid acknowledging suffering - and concludes that it's a silly objection.
literature  genre  criticism  wonder  suffering  pain  truth  fiction  experience  morality 
august 2009 by tsuomela
Essay: Icons as Fact, Fiction and Metaphor - Lens Blog - NYTimes.com
Of course, just because a photograph reflects the world with perceptual accuracy doesn’t mean it is proof of what spontaneously transpires. A photographic image might look like actual reality, but gradations of truth are measured in the circumstances that led up to the moment the picture was taken.
photography  art  truth  philosophy 
july 2009 by tsuomela
Letting Go of Heroes | No Map. No Guide. No Limits.
Despite all the teams who’ve gone in search of them, perhaps many of those who have invested their own dreams of success and escape into figures like Amelia Earhart and Everett Ruess really don’t want them found. Why? Because the dreams are so much better than any real story, and represent the happiness of possibility, instead of the very real risk of failure that any heroic or adventurous quest entails.
fame  heroism  exploration  story-telling  myth  mythology  1930s  mystery  truth 
july 2009 by tsuomela
Overcoming Bias: Who Loves Truth Most?
Truth loving is similar. Most folks say they prefer truth, but the folks most vocal about loving "truth" are usually selling something... The people who just want to know things because they need to make important decisions, in contrast, usually say little about their love of truth
attitude  truth  rationality 
april 2009 by tsuomela
Angry Bear: Background on "fresh water" and "salt water" macroeconomics
fresh-water=chicago school free-marketers, salt-water=coastal schools that question models.
economics  story-telling  modeling  truth  rational-markets  markets  ideology 
january 2009 by tsuomela

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