[hist-analytic] Reichenbach, Carnap, Positivism

Danny Frederick danny.frederick at btinternet.com
Sun Oct 18 14:36:11 EDT 2009


Hi Steve,

 

You say:

 

 

'I've never been completely convinced that the Cogito is a bad argument.'

 

 

The cogito seems plainly to be a valid argument, since 'Fa' entails 'Ex (x =
a)', at least in the sense that if the former is true then so is the latter.

 

But is it sound? Could its premise be false when enunciated? It seems plain
to me that it could. 'I' brings with it a theory, or a rag-bag of theories,
about the self, any or all of which may be false. Thus to affirm 'I think'
already presupposes 'I exist' (i.e. that some of these theories are true);
and thus the cogito is a petitio principii.

 

Cheers.

 

Danny

 

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