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Blog Profile / Maverick Philosopher

Filed Under:Academics / Philosophy
Posts on Regator:4784
Posts / Week:15.9
Archived Since:February 15, 2009

Blog Post Archive

Ad Ignorantiam and the Law

The day before yesterday I wrote, In a criminal case the probative bar is set very high: the accused has to be shown guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Here too there seems to be a legitimate appeal to ignorance: if...

Halloween Friday Cat Blogging!

I Ain't Superstitious, leastways no more than Howlin' Wolf, but two twin black tuxedo cats just crossed my path. All dressed up with nowhere to go. Nine lives and dressed to the nines. Stevie Ray Vaughan, Superstition. Guitar solo starts...

Burden of Proof, Appeal to Ignorance, Safety Considerations, and God

Firearms instructors sometimes say that every gun is loaded. That is plainly false as it stands, but a wise saying nonetheless if interpreted to mean: every gun is to be presumed loaded until proven unloaded. Presumptions are procedural rules. To...

October Ends . . .

... and we say farewell once again to Jack Kerouac, cat man and mama's boy, as he prepares to "leave all San Francisco behind and go back home across autumn America" proving once again to his romantic predecessor...

Paul Draper on God and the Burden of Proof

A concise paper by a pro in the philosophy of religion. For now I simply note its existence and availability. Some discussion later perhaps.

Jerry Coyne's Latest Outburst re: Pope Francis, Big Bang and Evolution

It doesn't merit a lot of attention, but I will mention two stupid moves that Jerry "Seinfeld" Coyne makes. Or if not stupid, then intellectually dishonest. (I am not suggesting that Jerry Seinfeld is stupid; I am alluding to his...

And Yet You Insist that Islam is no Threat to Our Values?

Berkeley's Jihad Against Bill Maher It's a funny world in which conservatives are the new liberals (old sense!) and liberals (new sense!) are the new fascists.

Seductive, but Fallacious

For an anarchist to claim that without laws there would be no criminals would be like claiming that without chemists there would be no chemicals.

Be Glad there is no Physiognomy of Belief

If the faces of people were as radically different as their beliefs, how few of our fellows would we recognize as human!


The bad weans us from this world and is therefore in that measure good; the good ties us to it and is in that measure bad.


True affinity is not that of consanguinity or of propinquity. True affinity is spiritual similarity.


Time is a goddess of healing -- for a time. She heals the wounds that come inevitably to those who must march to her beat. She brings us ill and makes us well again until such time as she does...


An engine can be used for braking, even though an engine is not a brake, but a motor. Similarly with doubt. The main use of it is as an engine of inquiry, not as a brake on belief.

Disputation and Burden of Proof: A Round with Professor Novak

I proposed for consideration a bit of dialog: A: The law of noncontradiction (LNC) is a law of thought merely. B: I dispute your claim. LNC is not a law of thought merely; it is also a law of extramental...

Who is Caius?

Robert Paul Wollf here replies with wit and lefty snark to a charming request by one Pamela N., a personal assistant, who wants to know who Immanuel Kant is referring to when he writes, "Caius is a man; man is...

If You Understood Me, You Would Agree with Me!

Georg Christoph Lichtenberg, The Waste Books, tr. R. J. Hollingdale, New York Review Books, 1990, p. 204, Notebook K, Aph. #84: To call a proposition into question all that is needed is very often merely to fail to understand it....

Parsimony, Burden of Proof, and God

From an e-mail by Spencer Case:... by my lights, parsimony might be a consideration that puts the burden of proof on the theist. Theories that multiply entities unnecessarily are less likely to be true and the theist's...

Obama, Holder, and the Racializing of Crime

You can rely on liberals to politicize race and racialize politics. But they also excel at the racialization of crime. Victor Davis Hanson has their number in Crimes of Exactly What? He discusses a number of examples besides Ferguson. Excerpts:...

Peter van Inwagen on Burden of Proof in Philosophy

Andrew Bailey sends the following quotations for our delectation: "(When a philosopher says, "The burden of the proof lies on you", he means, "You must deduce your conclusion from the truths of immediate sensory experience by means of an argument...

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