31 August 2006


My thesis is turning into my garden, alas. Jasmine said I read a lot, but she hasn't seen me in a little while. I've been reading a lot: I've been reading the first fifteen pages of On Certainty over and over again. It's quite rich, though. I finally understand Wittgenstein's remark in the Tractatus about realism and idealism, when carried to their fullest extent, coincide. They coincide in that they try to say something that can only be shown. The way that Wittgenstein changes his conception of logic, now that's a fecund topic. I.e., in OC Wittgenstein says in 59,
What sort of proposition is: "What could a mistake here be like!"? It would have to be a logical proposition. But it is a logic that is not used, because what it tells us is not learned through propositions.--It is a logical proposition; for it does describe the conceptual (linguistic) situation.
A logical proposition describes the conceptual situation? I suppose that makes sense. Again, contra Ramsey, logic isn't a normative science. But that's not to say that it's all willy-nilley. I hate it when you say something controversial, and the interpretation that follows carries what you say to the most wild, stupid conclusion. Just because logic isn't normative, and it's rather descriptive, doesn't mean that logic is meaningless. It's still a strict taskmaster. But there's a difference between a boss that makes you show up on time, and a boss that let's you come in whenever you'd like. Similarly, a boss that demands the impossible. And the impossible can mean different things in different situations.