[From Rick Marken (950211.2300)]
The post from msa@PANIX.COM this evening (950211.2200) came with
no name or time. This makes it hard to know who I'm talking to; I
presume it is Mark.
For newcomers to this list, the custom on CSG-L is to start posts with
the name, date and approximate time of the post, as I did above. It
makes it easier to see who you're talking to. Also, the post from
msa@PANIX.COM included a copy (double spaced) of my entire post
from earlier today (950211.1700) but msa@PANIX.COM only replied to
one small part of that post. It would help if only the relevant parts of
posts were included in the replies to them.
Anyway, here is my reply to msa@PANIX.COM's (Mark's?) post.
Of course *scientific observation* are not *your* observations are
They are only my observations; who else's could they be? Scientific
observations are like all other observations -- they are subjective
experiences. It is the systematic way in which they are made that
distinguishes scientific from other kinds of observations.
Tell me Rick, how would you know "Objective Reality" if *you saw*
I think "seeing" involves perceptual representation; there is, therefore,
no way I or anyone can "see"objective reality; all we see are perceptual
PCT says that it is impossible to know [Objective Reality]
Not quite true. PCT, like all other sciences, is based on modelling;
models (like Newton's "laws" combined with the calculus) can be
viewed as guesses about the nature of the reality represented by our
perceptions (scientific observations). To the extent that these models
predict these perceptions with great accuracy, we treat them as though
they were "objective reality". The PCT model predicts many of our
perceptions of behavior with extraordinary accuracy; therefore, we
tentatively treat the PCT model as though it were the "objective
reality" underlying the behavior of organisms.
Aligning PCT with the real world says that there is actually some
practical use for this theory and research.
It wasn't clear to me that "practical use for this theory [PCT]" was what
you meant by "aligning PCT with the real world". I'm sorry I didn't
understand this but it does seem like an unusual way to say it.
If there is going to be any practical use, people are going to have to
"buy" into the precepts.
I'm not sure that I understand this. In fact, I'm not sure it's true. For
example, there are a lot of space scientists who find Newton's theory
quite practical; they use it every day to propagate the orbits of satellites
so that they will know where to point their antennas. But I bet a lot of
these same scientists no longer believe in the "precepts" of Newton's
theory; they believe, instead, in the precepts of Einstein's theory (and
they occasionally have to use these precepts instead of Newton's when
relativity effects are significant).
Your smart ass remarks (like the one below to Susan) do not endear
anyone to you or your cause.
I am sorry if any of my remarks to Susan seemed "smart ass"; they
certainly were not intended to be that way.
For what it's worth, you are certainly not the first to notice how "un-
endearing" I can seem. If you stick with PCT, however, you might see that
I am un-endearing to the extent that what I say does not match what you
would like to hear me to say. Believe it or not, when your reference
signals and/or perceptual functions change , what I say will suddenly
match what you want me to say and I'll be to you what I already am to
Bill Powers -- just another boring guy;-)