(on praxeology) (getting closer) (attestation theory of truth)
[S]o, if the defining property of the discipline of science is observation, and praxeology is purely deductive independent of observation, then how can praxeology honestly be termed a science? It cannot. Praxeology can be defined as a logic, but not a science. Formal Logic and mathematics are branches of logic that produce proofs, but not truths. Truth, to have any universal meaning at all must mean correspondence to reality with increasingly weaker definitions in niche application as we move into various branches of logic.
Yet while truth is constrained by reality, axiomatic systems are not constrained by reality. We may produce theories, and rigid theories at that, but correspondence with reality is never axiomatic – axioms are limited to internal consistency. We are certainly missing a logic of cooperation with which to repair ethics. (I think I have articulated the criterion for that logic as voluntary transfer, symmetrically informed, warrantied, and free of externality.) But, I do not yet understand why we require a logic of action – or if there is any value in such a thing. But regardless of that question, logics are not identical to sciences and sciences not identical to logics, any more than proofs are identical to truths, or axioms identical to theories.
We may pretend for amusement purposes that human actions are, by analogy, functionally axiomatic rather than functionally theories in a given context, but this is a mere pretense. Theoretic systems must retain correspondence with reality, while axiomatic systems are not bound by correspondence with reality. Human actions occur within reality and are bounded by reality. Axiomatic systems are imaginary and are only bounded by imagination. For this reason human actions can only be theoretically constructed as correspondent with reality, just as logical systems can only be axiomatically constructed.
As such axiomatic systems tell us only about the internal consistency of our statements, and theoretical systems tell us only about the external correspondence of our theories – but not the internal consistency of our descriptions of those theories. If we use both tests of internal consistency and tests of external correspondence, and our statements are demonstrably valid proofs, and our theories are demonstrably valid tests, and both proofs and theories are stated operationally, then we can attest to the truth of our theories.
And the only means by which we can subjectively test either axiomatic or theoretic statements is to reduce them to analogies to experience, by stating them in operational sequence – which we call “Constructionism”.
If we cannot test the internal consistency or our arguments and external correspondence of our actions, then we cannot EVER honestly attest that our theories are true to our knowledge and understanding.
[T]his is the only standard of truth for any theory that I know of: attestation. If a theory is both externally correspondent, internally consistent, operationally stated, and falsifiable, then to our current knowledge that theory as stated is true – one can attest to its truth, and not commit unethical attestation. This does not mean that the theory cannot be improved upon. But it means one’s attestation about it is true. And that is the best that we can ever hope for.
There is a great difference between a true theory and a complete theory. At some point any theory must evolve into a tautology, at which point one cannot attest to one’s hypothesis (theory, conjecture). Than is non-sensical. So a theory free of attestation is merely complete – tautological. Identical. Not correspondent dependent upon attestation ‘true’, nor imaginary and proven ‘proof’.)
Getting closer. It should be possible, if difficult, to follow that argument. I bet within six months I can get lightbulbs to come on. Not quite there yet. But very close. This approach reduces all statements to human actions and truth to attestation rather than the platonic.