Re: Measuring Memes

t (JakeSapien@aol.com)
Tue, 1 Jun 1999 14:11:26 EDT

From: <JakeSapien@aol.com>
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 14:11:26 EDT
Subject: Re: Measuring Memes
To: memetics@mmu.ac.uk

In a message dated 6/1/99 10:10:58 AM Central Daylight Time,
hanss@sepa.tudelft.nl writes:

>>> 4. Has the distinction between internal logical consistency and truth been
> discussed in the meme literature?

I do not understand this I am afraid. <<

I don't know if there has been any such thing in memetics literature. If
anyone would be aware of the existence of material, Hans-Cees Speel would as
likely know as anyone. Something that may be closely related to this and
also closely related to memetics, however, would be evolutionary epistemology
- perhaps check out the Principia Cybernetica website for material in that
direction. Pan-Critical or Non-Justificational rationalism is a nutshell of
the involved position of evolutionary epistemology - Principia deals with
that a little more incidentally as it is more concerned with descriptive
treatments (e.g. how vicarious selectors operate within a memetic environment
of otherwise blind variation) of evolutionary epistemology rather than the
"how-to" involved approach.

The distinction that I would draw between logical consistency and truth - or
rather, I would say truth orientation - would be along the lines of
representation. Internal logical consistency alone is no guarantor of truth
orientation. But placed within a representational context, I would say that
the internally consistent contruction that contains the most and the most
consistent representations of that context will tend to be more truthfully
oriented than the construction than contains less and less consistent
representations of that context - in otherwords a greater degree of deception
and/or solipcism.

Non-justificational/pancritical rationalism is best described by the
statement:

"All representations are in principle subject to rational criticism".

Thus combining elements of consistency (ALL representations including the
statement itself) and representation - we aren't concerned the internal
consistency of mere statements and semantic constructions, but their
representational characteristics.

It may be well to note, however, that memetics is not so concerned with the
truth of a cultural replicator, but with the tendency of that replicator to
be replicated. Truth is only one of many factors that play a role in the
fitness of a meme, and in many cases memes replicate in spite of their lack
of truthfulness. Those cases are ones that are of particular interest to
memetics because of the persistence of such "deceptions". The persistence of
truthful information is not very interesting, but the persistence of
"untruthful" information is something that memetics might be particularly
good at explaining.

Principia on Evolutionary Epistemology:
<A HREF="http://pespmc1.vub.ac.be/EVOLEPIST.html">Evolutionary Approach to
Epistemology
</A>
http://pespmc1.vub.ac.be/EVOLEPIST.html

Links on Non-Justificational/Pancritical Rationalism:
<A
HREF="http://www.law.mita.keio.ac.jp/~sehagi/kogawara3.html">Non-Justification
al Rationalism
</A>
http://www.law.mita.keio.ac.jp/~sehagi/kogawara3.html
<A HREF="http://www.idiom.com/~arkuat/extr/faq/pcr.html">What is pancritical
rationalism (PCR)?
</A>
http://www.idiom.com/~arkuat/extr/faq/pcr.html
<A HREF="http://www.arts.monash.edu.au/phil/PHL2110/2110b4g.htm">Being
Rational
</A>
http://www.arts.monash.edu.au/phil/PHL2110/2110b4g.htm

-JS

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