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Rationality Quotes September 2013

There are no absolute certainties in this universe. A man must try to whip order into a yelping pack of probabilities, and uniform success is impossible.

— Jack Vance, The Languages of Pao

Rationality Quotes July 2013

The constitution can be amended therefore Americans are not bound by decisions made hundreds of years ago. There were 12 amendments passed in the 20th century, the last of which was an amendment that was proposed in 1789 and ratified in 1992.

Rationality Quotes July 2013

I'm saying that the argument that most people are doing something is not proof that what they are doing is better. In other words, the fact that most rich people choose not to give away all of their fortune is not proof that being rich is better than being poor. Why they choose not to give it all away cannot be inferred from their actions.

Personally I would state that this is a false dichotomy and that Rich is better than Poor because it is not-Poor. It isn't necessarily the best state of not-Poor.

Rationality Quotes July 2013

It's enough for a strong presumption of it being better, pending evidence to the contrary.

There is plenty of evidence that behaviour is not always rational which in my mind shifts the burden of proof.

Rationality Quotes July 2013

My superficial knowledge of Seneca and the stoics doesn't allow me to debate the premise fully. It does tell me that the argument that it is better can be debated. That people prefer to be rich does not make it better.

An aside: A rich man that gives away his wealth is not equal to a person that is poor from the start or has lost his riches. The person that gives it away, keeps his connections, earns respect and, generally, is in a position re-earn a fortune.

Rationality Quotes July 2013

It is terrible to see how a single unclear idea, a single formula without meaning, lurking in a young man’s head, will sometimes act like an obstruction.

— Charles Sanders Peirce

Rationality Quotes February 2013

and the human mind loves to find patterns even when the probabilities of the pattern being a rule are low. Coincidences are correlation.

Rationality Quotes February 2013

Coincidences … are the worst enemies of the truth. (Les coïncidences … sont les pires ennemies de la vérité.)

Gaston Leroux