In response to recent work on the aggregation of individual judgments on logically connected propositions into collective judgments, it is often asked whether judgment aggregation is a special case of Arrowian preference aggregation. We argue for the converse claim. After proving two impossibility theorems on judgment aggregation (using "systematicity" and "independence" conditions, respectively), we construct an embedding of preference aggregation into judgment aggregation and prove Arrow’s theorem (stated for strict preferences) as a corollary of our second result. Although we (...) thereby provide a new proof of Arrow’s theorem, our main aim is to identify the analogue of Arrow’s theorem in judgment aggregation, to clarify the relation between judgment and preference aggregation, and to illustrate the generality of the judgment aggregation model. JEL Classi…cation: D70, D71.. (shrink)
Riker (1982) famously argued that Arrow’s impossibility theorem undermined the logical foundations of “populism”, the view that in a democracy, laws and policies ought to express “the will of the people”. In response, his critics have questioned the use of Arrow’s theorem on the grounds that not all configurations of preferences are likely to occur in practice; the critics allege, in particular, that majority preference cycles, whose possibility the theorem exploits, rarely happen. In this essay, I argue (...) that the critics’ rejoinder to Riker misses the mark even if its factual claim about preferences is correct: Arrow’s theorem and related results threaten the populist’s principle of democratic legitimacy even if majority preference cycles never occur. In this particular context, the assumption of an unrestricted domain is justified irrespective of the preferences citizens are likely to have. (shrink)
This paper critically engages Philip Mirowki's essay, "The scientific dimensions of social knowledge and their distant echoes in 20th-century American philosophy of science." It argues that although the cold war context of anti-democratic elitism best suited for making decisions about engaging in nuclear war may seem to be politically and ideologically motivated, in fact we need to carefully consider the arguments underlying the new rational choice based political philosophies of the post-WWII era typified by Arrow's impossibility theorem. A (...) distrust of democratic decision-making principles may be developed by social scientists whose leanings may be toward the left or right side of the spectrum of political practices. (shrink)
In this paper, I investigate the relationship between preference and judgment aggregation, using the notion of ranking judgment introduced in List and Pettit. Ranking judgments were introduced in order to state the logical connections between the impossibility theorem of aggregating sets of judgments and Arrow’s theorem. I present a proof of the theorem concerning ranking judgments as a corollary of Arrow’s theorem, extending the translation between preferences and judgments defined in List and Pettit to the conditions (...) on the aggregation procedure. (shrink)
Amalgamating evidence of different kinds for the same hypothesis into an overall confirmation is analogous, I argue, to amalgamating individuals’ preferences into a group preference. The latter faces well-known impossibility theorems, most famously “Arrow’s Theorem”. Once the analogy between amalgamating evidence and amalgamating preferences is tight, it is obvious that amalgamating evidence might face a theorem similar to Arrow’s. I prove that this is so, and end by discussing the plausibility of the axioms required for the theorem.
We argue that a semantics for counterfactual conditionals in terms of comparative overall similarity faces a formal limitation due to Arrow’s impossibility theorem from social choice theory. According to Lewis’s account, the truth-conditions for counterfactual conditionals are given in terms of the comparative overall similarity between possible worlds, which is in turn determined by various aspects of similarity between possible worlds. We argue that a function from aspects of similarity to overall similarity should satisfy certain plausible constraints while Arrow’s (...) impossibility theorem rules out that such a function satisfies all the constraints simultaneously. We argue that a way out of this impasse is to represent aspectual similarity in terms of ranking functions instead of representing it in a purely ordinal fashion. Further, we argue against the claim that the determination of overall similarity by aspects of similarity faces a difficulty in addition to the Arrovian limitation, namely the incommensurability of different aspects of similarity. The phenomena that have been cited as evidence for such incommensurability are best explained by ordinary vagueness. (shrink)
According to conciliatory views about the epistemology of disagreement, when epistemic peers have conflicting doxastic attitudes toward a proposition and fully disclose to one another the reasons for their attitudes toward that proposition (and neither has independent reason to believe the other to be mistaken), each peer should always change his attitude toward that proposition to one that is closer to the attitudes of those peers with which there is disagreement. According to pure higher-order evidence views, higher-order evidence for a (...) proposition always suffices to determine the proper rational response to disagreement about that proposition within a group of epistemic peers. Using an analogue of Arrow's Impossibility Theorem, I shall argue that no conciliatory and pure higher-order evidence view about the epistemology of disagreement can provide a true and general answer to the question of what disagreeing epistemic peers should do after fully disclosing to each other the (first-order) reasons for their conflicting doxastic attitudes. (shrink)
An analogue of Arrow’s theorem has been thought to limit the possibilities for multi-criterial theory choice. Here, an example drawn from Toy Science, a model of theories and choice criteria, suggests that it does not. Arrow’s assumption that domains are unrestricted is inappropriate in connection with theory choice in Toy Science. There are, however, variants of Arrow’s theorem that do not require an unrestricted domain. They require instead that domains are, in a technical sense, ‘rich’. Since there are (...) rich domains in Toy Science, such theorems do constrain theory choice to some extent—certainly in the model and perhaps also in real science. (shrink)
(This is for the Cambridge Handbook of Analytic Philosophy, edited by Marcus Rossberg) In this handbook entry, I survey the different ways in which formal mathematical methods have been applied to philosophical questions throughout the history of analytic philosophy. I consider: formalization in symbolic logic, with examples such as Aquinas’ third way and Anselm’s ontological argument; Bayesian confirmation theory, with examples such as the fine-tuning argument for God and the paradox of the ravens; foundations of mathematics, with examples such as (...) Hilbert’s programme and Gödel’s incompleteness theorems; social choice theory, with examples such as Condorcet’s paradox and Arrow’s theorem; ‘how possibly’ results, with examples such as Condorcet’s jury theorem and recent work on intersectionality theory; and the application of advanced mathematics in philosophy, with examples such as accuracy-first epistemology. (shrink)
This paper applies ideas and tools from social choice theory (such as Arrow'stheorem and related results) to linguistics. Specifically, the paper investigates the problem of constraint aggregation in optimality theory from a social-choice-theoretic perspective.
Majority cycling and related social choice paradoxes are often thought to threaten the meaningfulness of democracy. But deliberation can prevent majority cycles – not by inducing unanimity, which is unrealistic, but by bringing preferences closer to single-peakedness. We present the first empirical test of this hypothesis, using data from Deliberative Polls. Comparing preferences before and after deliberation, we find increases in proximity to single-peakedness. The increases are greater for lower versus higher salience issues and for individuals who seem to have (...) deliberated more versus less effectively. They are not merely a byproduct of increased substantive agreement. Our results both refine and support the idea that deliberation, by increasing proximity to single-peakedness, provides an escape from the problem of majority cycling. (shrink)
Suppose that the members of a group each hold a rational set of judgments on some interconnected questions, and imagine that the group itself has to form a collective, rational set of judgments on those questions. How should it go about dealing with this task? We argue that the question raised is subject to a difficulty that has recently been noticed in discussion of the doctrinal paradox in jurisprudence. And we show that there is a general impossibility theorem that (...) that difficulty illustrates. Our paper describes this impossibility result and provides an exploration of its significance. The result naturally invites comparison with Kenneth Arrow's famous theorem (Arrow, 1963 and 1984; Sen, 1970) and we elaborate that comparison in a companion paper (List and Pettit, 2002). The paper is in four sections. The first section documents the need for various groups to aggregate its members' judgments; the second presents the discursive paradox; the third gives an informal statement of the more general impossibility result; the formal proof is presented in an appendix. The fourth section, finally, discusses some escape routes from that impossibility. (shrink)
Juries, committees and experts panels commonly appraise things of one kind or another on the basis of grades awarded by several people. When everybody's grading thresholds are known to be the same, the results sometimes can be counted on to reflect the graders’ opinion. Otherwise, they often cannot. Under certain conditions, Arrow's ‘impossibility’ theorem entails that judgements reached by aggregating grades do not reliably track any collective sense of better and worse at all. These claims are made by (...) adapting the Arrow–Sen framework for social choice to study grading in groups. (shrink)
In this short survey article, I discuss Bell’s theorem and some strategies that attempt to avoid the conclusion of non-locality. I focus on two that intersect with the philosophy of probability: (1) quantum probabilities and (2) superdeterminism. The issues they raised not only apply to a wide class of no-go theorems about quantum mechanics but are also of general philosophical interest.
Shows how, as a consequence of the Arrow Impossibility Theorem, objectivity in grading is chimerical, given a sufficiently knowledgeable teacher (of his students, not his subject) in a sufficiently small class. -/- PDF available from JStor only; permission to post full version previously granted by journal editors and publisher expired. -/- Unpublished reply posted gratis.
In the theory of judgment aggregation, it is known for which agendas of propositions it is possible to aggregate individual judgments into collective ones in accordance with the Arrow-inspired requirements of universal domain, collective rationality, unanimity preservation, non-dictatorship and propositionwise independence. But it is only partially known (e.g., only in the monotonic case) for which agendas it is possible to respect additional requirements, notably non-oligarchy, anonymity, no individual veto power, or implication preservation. We fully characterize the agendas for which there (...) are such possibilities, thereby answering the most salient open questions about propositionwise judgment aggregation. Our results build on earlier results by Nehring and Puppe (2002), Nehring (2006), Dietrich and List (2007a) and Dokow and Holzman (2010a). (shrink)
Lewis Carroll, both logician and writer, suggested a logical paradox containing furthermore two connotations (connotations or metaphors are inherent in literature rather than in mathematics or logics). The paradox itself refers to implication demonstrating that an intermediate implication can be always inserted in an implication therefore postponing its ultimate conclusion for the next step and those insertions can be iteratively and indefinitely added ad lib, as if ad infinitum. Both connotations clear up links due to the shared formal structure with (...) other well-known mathematical observations: (1) the paradox of Achilles and the Turtle; (2) the transitivity of the relation of equality. Analogically to (1), one can juxtapose the paradox of the Liar (for Lewis Carroll’s paradox) and that of the arrow (for “Achilles and the Turtle”), i.e. a logical paradox, on the one hand, and an aporia of motion, on the other hand, suggesting a shared formal structure of both, which can be called “ontological”, on which basis “motion” studied by physics and “conclusion” studied by logic can be unified being able to bridge logic and physics philosophically in a Hegelian manner: even more, the bridge can be continued to mathematics in virtue of (2), which forces the equality (for its property of transitivity) of any two quantities to be postponed analogically ad lib and ad infinitum. The paper shows that Hilbert arithmetic underlies naturally Lewis Carroll’s paradox admitting at least three interpretations linked to each other by it: mathematical, physical and logical. Thus, it can be considered as both generalization and solution of his paradox therefore naturally unifying the completeness of quantum mechanics (i.e. the absence of hidden variables) and eventual completeness of mathematics as the same and isomorphic to the completeness of propositional logic in relation to set theory as a first-order logic (in the sense of Gödel (1930)’s completeness theorems). (shrink)
This paper develops and explores a new framework for theorizing about the measurement and aggregation of well-being. It is a qualitative variation on the framework of social welfare functionals developed by Amartya Sen. In Sen’s framework, a social or overall betterness ordering is assigned to each profile of real-valued utility functions. In the qualitative framework developed here, numerical utilities are replaced by the properties they are supposed to represent. This makes it possible to characterize the measurability and interpersonal comparability of (...) well-being directly, without the use of invariance conditions, and to distinguish between real changes in well-being and merely representational changes in the unit of measurement. The qualitative framework is shown to have important implications for a range of issues in axiology and social choice theory, including the characterization of welfarism, axiomatic derivations of utilitarianism, the meaningfulness of prioritarianism, the informational requirements of variable-population ethics, the impossibility theorems of Arrow and others, and the metaphysics of value. (shrink)
We note that a plural version of logicism about arithmetic is suggested by the standard reading of Hume's Principle in terms of `the number of Fs/Gs'. We lay out the resources needed to prove a version of Frege's principle in plural, rather than second-order, logic. We sketch a proof of the theorem and comment philosophically on the result, which sits well with a metaphysics of natural numbers as plural properties.
In this paper I argue for an association between impurity and explanatory power in contemporary mathematics. This proposal is defended against the ancient and influential idea that purity and explanation go hand-in-hand (Aristotle, Bolzano) and recent suggestions that purity/impurity ascriptions and explanatory power are more or less distinct (Section 1). This is done by analyzing a central and deep result of additive number theory, Szemerédi’s theorem, and various of its proofs (Section 2). In particular, I focus upon the radically (...) impure (ergodic) proof due to Furstenberg (Section 3). Furstenberg’s ergodic proof is striking because it utilizes intuitively foreign and infinitary resources to prove a finitary combinatorial result and does so in a perspicuous fashion. I claim that Furstenberg’s proof is explanatory in light of its clear expression of a crucial structural result, which provides the “reason why” Szemerédi’s theorem is true. This is, however, rather surprising: how can such intuitively different conceptual resources “get a grip on” the theorem to be proved? I account for this phenomenon by articulating a new construal of the content of a mathematical statement, which I call structural content (Section 4). I argue that the availability of structural content saves intuitive epistemic distinctions made in mathematical practice and simultaneously explicates the intervention of surprising and explanatorily rich conceptual resources. Structural content also disarms general arguments for thinking that impurity and explanatory power might come apart. Finally, I sketch a proposal that, once structural content is in hand, impure resources lead to explanatory proofs via suitably understood varieties of simplification and unification (Section 5). (shrink)
Time in electromagnetism shares many features with time in other physical theories. But there is one aspect of electromagnetism's relationship with time that has always been controversial, yet has not always attracted the limelight it deserves: the electromagnetic arrow of time. Beginning with a re-analysis of a famous argument between Ritz and Einstein over the origins of the radiation arrow, this chapter frames the debate between modern Einsteinians and neo-Ritzians. It tries to find a clean statement of what the arrow (...) is and then explains how it relates to the cosmological and thermodynamic arrows, representing the most developed and sophisticated attack yet, in either the physics or philosophy literature, on the electromagnetic arrow of time. (shrink)
A platitude that took hold with Kuhn is that there can be several equally good ways of balancing theoretical virtues for theory choice. Okasha recently modelled theory choice using technical apparatus from the domain of social choice: famously, Arrow showed that no method of social choice can jointly satisfy four desiderata, and each of the desiderata in social choice has an analogue in theory choice. Okasha suggested that one can avoid the Arrow analogue for theory choice by employing a strategy (...) used by Sen in social choice, namely, to enhance the information made available to the choice algorithms. I argue here that, despite Okasha’s claims to the contrary, the information-enhancing strategy is not compelling in the domain of theory choice. (shrink)
In this essay a quantum-dualistic, perspectival and synchronistic interpretation of quantum mechanics is further developed in which the classical world-from-decoherence which is perceived (decoherence) and the perceived world-in-consciousness which is classical (collapse) are not necessarily identified. Thus, Quantum Reality or "{\it unus mundus}" is seen as both i) a physical non-perspectival causal Reality where the quantum-to-classical transition is operated by decoherence, and as ii) a quantum linear superposition of all classical psycho-physical perspectival Realities which are governed by synchronicity as well (...) as causality (corresponding to classical first-person observes who actually populate the world). This interpretation is termed the Nietzsche-Jung-Pauli interpretation and is a re-imagining of the Wigner-von Neumann interpretation which is also consistent with some reading of Bohr's quantum philosophy. (shrink)
Bell’s theorem has fascinated physicists and philosophers since his 1964 paper, which was written in response to the 1935 paper of Einstein, Podolsky, and Rosen. Bell’s theorem and its many extensions have led to the claim that quantum mechanics and by inference nature herself are nonlocal in the sense that a measurement on a system by an observer at one location has an immediate effect on a distant entangled system. Einstein was repulsed by such “spooky action at a (...) distance” and was led to question whether quantum mechanics could provide a complete description of physical reality. In this paper I argue that quantum mechanics does not require spooky action at a distance of any kind and yet it is entirely reasonable to question the assumption that quantum mechanics can provide a complete description of physical reality. The magic of entangled quantum states has little to do with entanglement and everything to do with superposition, a property of all quantum systems and a foundational tenet of quantum mechanics. (shrink)
I propose a relevance-based independence axiom on how to aggregate individual yes/no judgments on given propositions into collective judgments: the collective judgment on a proposition depends only on people’s judgments on propositions which are relevant to that proposition. This axiom contrasts with the classical independence axiom: the collective judgment on a proposition depends only on people’s judgments on the same proposition. I generalize the premise-based rule and the sequential-priority rule to an arbitrary priority order of the propositions, instead of a (...) dichotomous premise/conclusion order resp. a linear priority order. I prove four impossibility theorems on relevance-based aggregation. One theorem simultaneously generalizes Arrow’s Theorem (in its general and indiﬀerence-free versions) and the well-known Arrow-like theorem in judgment aggregation. (shrink)
On the heels of Franzén's fine technical exposition of Gödel's incompleteness theorems and related topics (Franzén 2004) comes this survey of the incompleteness theorems aimed at a general audience. Gödel's Theorem: An Incomplete Guide to its Use and Abuse is an extended and self-contained exposition of the incompleteness theorems and a discussion of what informal consequences can, and in particular cannot, be drawn from them.
It has been known for a few years that no more than Pi-1-1 comprehension is needed for the proof of "Frege's Theorem". One can at least imagine a view that would regard Pi-1-1 comprehension axioms as logical truths but deny that status to any that are more complex—a view that would, in particular, deny that full second-order logic deserves the name. Such a view would serve the purposes of neo-logicists. It is, in fact, no part of my view that, (...) say, Delta-3-1 comprehension axioms are not logical truths. What I am going to suggest, however, is that there is a special case to be made on behalf of Pi-1-1 comprehension. Making the case involves investigating extensions of first-order logic that do not rely upon the presence of second-order quantifiers. A formal system for so-called "ancestral logic" is developed, and it is then extended to yield what I call "Arché logic". (shrink)
In this article, a possible generalization of the Löb’s theorem is considered. Main result is: let κ be an inaccessible cardinal, then ¬Con( ZFC +∃κ) .
The ``doctrinal paradox'' or ``discursive dilemma'' shows that propositionwise majority voting over the judgments held by multiple individuals on some interconnected propositions can lead to inconsistent collective judgments on these propositions. List and Pettit (2002) have proved that this paradox illustrates a more general impossibility theorem showing that there exists no aggregation procedure that generally produces consistent collective judgments and satisfies certain minimal conditions. Although the paradox and the theorem concern the aggregation of judgments rather than preferences, they (...) invite comparison with two established results on the aggregation of preferences: the Condorcet paradox and Arrow's impossibility theorem. We may ask whether the new impossibility theorem is a special case of Arrow'stheorem, or whether there are interesting disanalogies between the two results. In this paper, we compare the two theorems, and show that they are not straightforward corollaries of each other. We further suggest that, while the framework of preference aggregation can be mapped into the framework of judgment aggregation, there exists no obvious reverse mapping. Finally, we address one particular minimal condition that is used in both theorems – an independence condition – and suggest that this condition points towards a unifying property underlying both impossibility results. (shrink)
How can different individuals' probability assignments to some events be aggregated into a collective probability assignment? Classic results on this problem assume that the set of relevant events -- the agenda -- is a sigma-algebra and is thus closed under disjunction (union) and conjunction (intersection). We drop this demanding assumption and explore probabilistic opinion pooling on general agendas. One might be interested in the probability of rain and that of an interest-rate increase, but not in the probability of rain or (...) an interest-rate increase. We characterize linear pooling and neutral pooling for general agendas, with classic results as special cases for agendas that are sigma-algebras. As an illustrative application, we also consider probabilistic preference aggregation. Finally, we compare our results with existing results on binary judgment aggregation and Arrovian preference aggregation. This paper is the first of two self-contained, but technically related companion papers inspired by binary judgment-aggregation theory. (shrink)
Several recent results on the aggregation of judgments over logically connected propositions show that, under certain conditions, dictatorships are the only propositionwise aggregation functions generating fully rational (i.e., complete and consistent) collective judgments. A frequently mentioned route to avoid dictatorships is to allow incomplete collective judgments. We show that this route does not lead very far: we obtain oligarchies rather than dictatorships if instead of full rationality we merely require that collective judgments be deductively closed, arguably a minimal condition of (...) rationality, compatible even with empty judgment sets. We derive several characterizations of oligarchies and provide illustrative applications to Arrowian preference aggregation and Kasher and Rubinsteinís group identification problem. (shrink)
In normative political theory, it is widely accepted that democracy cannot be reduced to voting alone, but that it requires deliberation. In formal social choice theory, by contrast, the study of democracy has focused primarily on the aggregation of individual opinions into collective decisions, typically through voting. While the literature on deliberation has an optimistic flavour, the literature on social choice is more mixed. It is centred around several paradoxes and impossibility results identifying conflicts between different intuitively plausible desiderata. In (...) recent years, there has been a growing dialogue between the two literatures. This paper discusses the connections between them. Important insights are that (i) deliberation can complement aggregation and open up an escape route from some of its negative results; and (ii) the formal models of social choice theory can shed light on some aspects of deliberation, such as the nature of deliberation-induced opinion change. (shrink)
This is a series of lectures on formal decision theory held at the University of Bayreuth during the summer terms 2008 and 2009. It largely follows the book from Michael D. Resnik: Choices. An Introduction to Decision Theory, 5th ed. Minneapolis London 2000 and covers the topics: -/- Decisions under ignorance and risk Probability calculus (Kolmogoroff Axioms, Bayes' Theorem) Philosophical interpretations of probability (R. v. Mises, Ramsey-De Finetti) Neuman-Morgenstern Utility Theory Introductory Game Theory Social Choice Theory (Sen's Paradox of (...) Liberalism, Arrow'sTheorem) . (shrink)
The previous two parts of the paper demonstrate that the interpretation of Fermat’s last theorem (FLT) in Hilbert arithmetic meant both in a narrow sense and in a wide sense can suggest a proof by induction in Part I and by means of the Kochen - Specker theorem in Part II. The same interpretation can serve also for a proof FLT based on Gleason’s theorem and partly similar to that in Part II. The concept of (probabilistic) measure (...) of a subspace of Hilbert space and especially its uniqueness can be unambiguously linked to that of partial algebra or incommensurability, or interpreted as a relation of the two dual branches of Hilbert arithmetic in a wide sense. The investigation of the last relation allows for FLT and Gleason’s theorem to be equated in a sense, as two dual counterparts, and the former to be inferred from the latter, as well as vice versa under an additional condition relevant to the Gödel incompleteness of arithmetic to set theory. The qubit Hilbert space itself in turn can be interpreted by the unity of FLT and Gleason’s theorem. The proof of such a fundamental result in number theory as FLT by means of Hilbert arithmetic in a wide sense can be generalized to an idea about “quantum number theory”. It is able to research mathematically the origin of Peano arithmetic from Hilbert arithmetic by mediation of the “nonstandard bijection” and its two dual branches inherently linking it to information theory. Then, infinitesimal analysis and its revolutionary application to physics can be also re-realized in that wider context, for example, as an exploration of the way for physical quantity of time (respectively, for time derivative in any temporal process considered in physics) to appear at all. Finally, the result admits a philosophical reflection of how any hierarchy arises or changes itself only thanks to its dual and idempotent counterpart. (shrink)
Introduction to mathematical logic, part 2.Textbook for students in mathematical logic and foundations of mathematics. Platonism, Intuition, Formalism. Axiomatic set theory. Around the Continuum Problem. Axiom of Determinacy. Large Cardinal Axioms. Ackermann's Set Theory. First order arithmetic. Hilbert's 10th problem. Incompleteness theorems. Consequences. Connected results: double incompleteness theorem, unsolvability of reasoning, theorem on the size of proofs, diophantine incompleteness, Loeb's theorem, consistent universal statements are provable, Berry's paradox, incompleteness and Chaitin's theorem. Around Ramsey's theorem.
In solving judgment aggregation problems, groups often face constraints. Many decision problems can be modelled in terms the acceptance or rejection of certain propositions in a language, and constraints as propositions that the decisions should be consistent with. For example, court judgments in breach-of-contract cases should be consistent with the constraint that action and obligation are necessary and sufficient for liability; judgments on how to rank several options in an order of preference with the constraint of transitivity; and judgments on (...) budget items with budgetary constraints. Often more or less demanding constraints on decisions are imaginable. For instance, in preference ranking problems, the transitivity constraint is often contrasted with the weaker acyclicity constraint. In this paper, we make constraints explicit in judgment aggregation by relativizing the rationality conditions of consistency and deductive closure to a constraint set, whose variation yields more or less strong notions of rationality. We review several general results on judgment aggregation in light of such constraints. (shrink)
I argue that Composition as Identity blocks the plural version of Cantor's Theorem, and that therefore the plural version of Cantor's Theorem can no longer be uncritically appealed to. As an example, I show how this result blocks a recent argument by Hawthorne and Uzquiano.
A Husserlian phenomenological approach to logic treats concepts in terms of their experiential meaning rather than in terms of reference, sets of individuals, and sentences. The present article applies such an approach in turn to the reasoning operative in various paradoxes: the simple Liar, the complex Liar paradoxes, the Grelling-type paradoxes, and Gödel’s Theorem. It finds that in each case a meaningless statement, one generated by circular definition, is treated as if were meaningful, and consequently as either true or (...) false, although in fact it is neither. The situation is further complicated by the fact that the sentence used to express the meaningless statement is ambiguous, and may also be used to express a meaningful statement. The paradoxes result from a failure to distinguish between the two meanings the sentence may have. (shrink)
Fermat’s Least Time Principle has a long history. World’s foremost academies of the day championed by their most prestigious philosophers competed for the glory and prestige that went with the solution of the refraction problem of light. The controversy, known as Descartes - Fermat controversy was due to the contradictory views held by Descartes and Fermat regarding the relative speeds of light in different media. Descartes with his mechanical philosophy insisted that every natural phenomenon must be explained by mechanical principles. (...) Fermat on the other hand insisted an end purpose for every motion. For example, least time of travel and not the least distance of travel is the end purpose for motion of light. This implied a thinking nature, which was rejected by Descartes. Surprisingly, with contradictory assumptions regarding the relative speeds of light in different media, both Descartes and Fermat came to the same result that the ratio of sines of angles of incidence and refraction is a constant. Fermat’s result came to be known as the ‘Fermat’s least time principle’. We show in this article that Fermat’s least time principle violates a fundamental theorem in geometry – the Ptolemy’s theorem. That leads to the invalidity of Fermat’s principle. -/- . (shrink)
In this study, the starting point is the well-known physical laws applied to human social life. On the basis of natural laws human actions are considered and through the prism of physical laws such concepts as use and possession are defined. A parallel is drawn between such a representation of these concepts and those conflicting views that are available in the literature regarding the concept of property. To complete the definitions of use and possession nature is introduced as a fictitious (...) owner. And on this basis, the positive possibility of a theoretical solution to the problem of initial assignment is shown. Again, on the basis of physical laws, the fundamental concept of [human] needs is introduced. It is shown that the collision of people's needs on the same thing allows uniform classifying property defined in literature as the relationship between a person and a thing or as the relationship between people because of a thing. Considering the relationship between two human beings through needs and costs, as a natural necessity, people inevitably renounce their claims to possess and use certain things in favor of other people. It is shown that this refusal forms the right of those people in whose favor this refusal is carried out to possess and use things. The right of one is the refusal of all others to own and use the thing. It is shown that the right was ensured and will always be ensured by force. The use or threat of the use of force is something that can reliably ward off a person from the unbridled realization of his needs. In the process of the formation of mankind, nature itself forces people to organize into communities that can oppose their individual members and their associations with significantly greater power. The whole, as a rule, is stronger than its part. And it is society that can reliably ensure the exercise of rights for its members. Natural laws also make it possible to resolve, on the basis of the concept of law, as a renunciation of possession and use, the issue of belonging to what nature gives us. These are natural resources and the human body. It is shown that the human body should belong to the person himself, and the resources to all members of society equally. The affiliation of all other things produced by man can be unambiguously determined within the framework of contractual relations between members of society, their associations and society as a whole. Since the right of everyone is ensured by the society, and, therefore, by each member of the society individually, a necessary condition for membership is understanding and recognition of the rights of certain things to other members of the society. And this may be the main criterion for joining full members of society, as opposed to the commonly used age criterion, which works on the bulk of people, but gives failures in many special cases. A typical example of such cases is the deprivation or infringement of the rights of persons of full legal age, but committed acts that are called unlawful in society. As part of the research on ownership issues, ownership is considered. It is shown that the necessary tool for using the objects of co-ownership is the voting of co-owners. A special case of co-ownership, when all co-owners have equal shares in co-ownership, is indistinguishable from what is called democracy. It is shown that voting in general and democracy in particular, as procedures for aggregating preferences, can have a positive decision, in refutation of the universality of the conclusion of Arrow'stheorem. (shrink)
The aim of this article is to introduce the theory of judgment aggregation, a growing interdisciplinary research area. The theory addresses the following question: How can a group of individuals make consistent collective judgments on a given set of propositions on the basis of the group members' individual judgments on them? I begin by explaining the observation that initially sparked the interest in judgment aggregation, the so-called "doctinal" and "discursive paradoxes". I then introduce the basic formal model of judgment aggregation, (...) which allows me to present some illustrative variants of a generic impossibility result. I subsequently turn to the question of how this impossibility result can be avoided, going through several possible escape routes. Finally, I relate the theory of judgment aggregation to other branches of aggregation theory. Rather than offering a comprehensive survey of the theory of judgment aggregation, I hope to introduce the theory in a succinct and pedagogical way, providing an illustrative rather than exhaustive coverage of some of its key ideas and results. (shrink)
Comparative overall similarity lies at the basis of a lot of recent metaphysics and epistemology. It is a poor foundation. Overall similarity is supposed to be an aggregate of similarities and differences in various respects. But there is no good way of combining them all.
By introducing elements of phenomenological philosophy to the analysis of human needs in economics; from Sartrean postulates as well as the nature and essence of individual’s needs, has been revealed a theorethical framework that serves to ponder human being’s existential behavior by means of their phenomenologic social choices and welfare. Defining a planning agent under strong assumptions of rationality and projective efficacious capabilities, the Arrow’s theorem has been proved for the economic agent aware of its finitude in this world.
The following essay reconsiders the ontological and logical issues around Frege’s Basic Law (V). If focuses less on Russell’s Paradox, as most treatments of Frege’s Grundgesetze der Arithmetik (GGA)1 do, but rather on the relation between Frege’s Basic Law (V) and Cantor’s Theorem (CT). So for the most part the inconsistency of Naïve Comprehension (in the context of standard Second Order Logic) will not concern us, but rather the ontological issues central to the conflict between (BLV) and (CT). These (...) ontological issues are interesting in their own right. And if and only if in case ontological considerations make a strong case for something like (BLV) we have to trouble us with inconsistency and paraconsistency. These ontological issues also lead to a renewed methodological reflection what to assume or recognize as an axiom. (shrink)
According to a theorem recently proved in the theory of logical aggregation, any nonconstant social judgment function that satisfies independence of irrelevant alternatives (IIA) is dictatorial. We show that the strong and not very plausible IIA condition can be replaced with a minimal independence assumption plus a Pareto-like condition. This new version of the impossibility theorem likens it to Arrow’s and arguably enhances its paradoxical value.
Textbook on Gödel’s incompleteness theorems and computability theory, based on the Open Logic Project. Covers recursive function theory, arithmetization of syntax, the first and second incompleteness theorem, models of arithmetic, second-order logic, and the lambda calculus.
In a quantum universe with a strong arrow of time, it is standard to postulate that the initial wave function started in a particular macrostate---the special low-entropy macrostate selected by the Past Hypothesis. Moreover, there is an additional postulate about statistical mechanical probabilities according to which the initial wave function is a ''typical'' choice in the macrostate. Together, they support a probabilistic version of the Second Law of Thermodynamics: typical initial wave functions will increase in entropy. Hence, there are two (...) sources of randomness in such a universe: the quantum-mechanical probabilities of the Born rule and the statistical mechanical probabilities of the Statistical Postulate. I propose a new way to understand time's arrow in a quantum universe. It is based on what I call the Thermodynamic Theories of Quantum Mechanics. According to this perspective, there is a natural choice for the initial quantum state of the universe, which is given by not a wave function but by a density matrix. The density matrix plays a microscopic role: it appears in the fundamental dynamical equations of those theories. The density matrix also plays a macroscopic / thermodynamic role: it is exactly the projection operator onto the Past Hypothesis subspace. Thus, given an initial subspace, we obtain a unique choice of the initial density matrix. I call this property "the conditional uniqueness" of the initial quantum state. The conditional uniqueness provides a new and general strategy to eliminate statistical mechanical probabilities in the fundamental physical theories, by which we can reduce the two sources of randomness to only the quantum mechanical one. I also explore the idea of an absolutely unique initial quantum state, in a way that might realize Penrose's idea of a strongly deterministic universe. (shrink)
Leibniz proposed the ‘Most Determined Path Principle’ in seventeenth century. According to it, ‘ease’ of travel is the end purpose of motion. Using this principle and his calculus method he demonstrated Snell’s Laws of reflection and refraction. This method shows that light follows extremal (local minimum or maximum) time path in going from one point to another, either directly along a straight line path or along a broken line path when it undergoes reflection or refraction at plane or spherical (concave (...) or convex) surfaces. The extremal time path avoided the criticism that Fermat’s least time path was subjected to, by Cartesians who cited examples of reflections at spherical surfaces where light took the path of longest time. Thereby it became the standard method of demonstration of Snell’s Laws. Ptolemy’s theorem is a fundamental theorem in geometry. A special case of it offers a method of finding the minimum sum of the two distances of a point from two given fixed points. We show in this paper that Leibniz’s calculus proof of Snell’s Laws violates Ptolemy’s theorem, whereby Leibniz’s proof becomes invalid. (shrink)
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