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Carroll vs Harris

May 4th, 2010 · No Comments

Sean Carroll vs Sam Harris

You Can’t Derive Ought from Is
by Sean Carroll
(Cross-posted at NPR’s 13.7: Cosmos and Culture.)

I agree with Myers, basically, that Hume’s (and Kant’s) thinking on facts/values is right, and it can be highly dangerously for reductionists to suggest to the suggestible otherwise.

Unfortunately, life is not simple, and the phrasing of the debate is so vague that you could find a bunch of trick arguments deriving ought from is.
The problem is that nature is not mechanically value-free. But the value basis of natural evolution is ultra subtle, and requires a form of thought at yet unknown to us.
This is not really against Hume, merely an injunction to bring some precision to the terminology.

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