Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Hilary Putnam's Last Tango in Paris

What is happening here? Did Putnam really want the Derrida acolyte to pass him the butter or was his real purpose to signal an intention to bugger with his brains Brando style? Now it is true that Putnam actually ate the butter that the Derridista passed him but was it not to recruit himself for the purpose of buggering with the young fellow's brains? Yet, given that Putnam's life-project can't decompose facts from values might not the reverse be the case- i.e. that Putnam's quest for butter drives his buggering with brains rather than the other way round?
Putnam thinks that a theory which returns the same answer to anything it analyses is not a theory. Yet  nothing else is. The point about paying money to get a Credential as a theorist is that your output is predictable and thus marketable or rent yielding as Bourdieusian capital.
Assuming the fitness landscape changes unpredictably, as must be the case if Life evolved, it does not matter if a particular theory is incoherent and silly so long as it as it always returns the same answer under any perturbation of the Social Information Set. Some Theory will be objectively- i.e. instrumentally- better than every other, irrespective of its incoherence and silliness, so it makes sense for Society to devote a very small amount of its total resources to feeding and clothing Theorists because of a Newcomb or Kavka's toxin type problem facing Society such that strategically simulated belief in an Theorist- i.e. a guy who always says the same thing yet also believes he is a smart oracle- yields better or more stable correlated equlibria.

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