most postmodern bullshit

October 2, 2015 § Leave a comment

I said:

He’s equating political correctness with post modernism?  There’s no connection between egalitarianism and the enlightenment?  What? Also. the idea that “science never knows anything for sure” is the basic falsification criteria.  That is basic to the scientific method and the philosophy of science.  Post modernism doesn’t attempt to say what is true or false or what something means, it instead attempts to account for how meaning itself is produced.  There is nothing inherently left or right wing about it and there is no attempt to claim that truth itself doesn’t exist.  Is this lecture a joke?

Chaz Rowe replied:

“If you can’t know anything for sure, you can’t falsify anything. Falsification allows for certainty when a theory is wrong.”

I said:

It’s a strawman argument though because there isn’t some hegemonic post modern perspective which begins with the assumption that nothing can be known.  It’s like assuming that epistemology, because it can even exist as a field of study, must also assume that nothing can be known.  To question the nature of knowledge is not to argue that there is no knowledge that is possible.  Even “alternative ways of knowing” assumes that there is something to know or that it is possible for us to know it.

Furthermore, political correctness actually shares far more in common with religious conservativism than it does any post modern perspective.  It’s an idealist view of history which assumes that historical outcomes are reducible to the belief systems which brought them about.  That is why both forms of idealism end in a moral critique of particular belief systems.  I can’t think of anything less “post modern” than political correctness, unless we want to argue that religious conservativism is post modern as well.

Both posit a very firm conception of moral absolutes and a condemnation of those who deny those absolutes.  For somebody to argue that your conception of morality is immoral and then to posit why it is that you falsely believed you were moral is not to say that there is no absolute morality, meaning, or truth and that it is all relative.  It’s simply an attempt to discover why somebody else was wrong in their beliefs, not an argument that nobody can ever be right or that there can be no correct belief whatsoever.   It automatically assumes that there is truth to be known and that somebody can be wrong if you’re arguing that somebody else is wrong.

How can something be politically correct if nothing can be said to be politically incorrect?

On what basis can we decide that something is correct or incorrect if not by making reference to some absolute conception truth which is presumably possible for us to know? Post modern perspectives don’t assert that everything is meaningless, they attempt to account for how meaning itself is produced. His whole argument is based on a false paradigm.  He’s tearing down a strawman argument.  It’s like religious conservatives in the 80s who tore down “secular humanism” or Leo Strauss tearing down “historicism.”  They’re imaginary positions that nobody actually took.

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