[extropy-chat] Rational thinking

Chris Hibbert hibbert at mydruthers.com
Sat Dec 2 03:10:56 UTC 2006

Jef Albright said:
> So it appears that your point is the following:
> "Two kinds of rationality"
> (1) Considered calmly and thoroughly within larger scope.
> (2) Considered quickly under pressure within smaller scope.
> Do you really think these are differences in kind, or could they be
> just qualitative differences of scale?  Of course an angry person can
> be rational, right?  Of course a quick decision under pressure can be
> rational, right?  And consideration of extended consequences is
> always constrained to some extent.

I'm willing to agree that there are gradations between them.  That 
doesn't mean we can't make distinctions between them.  The fact that hot 
and cold both lie along a scale, and that 50 degrees is hot in some 
contexts and cold in others doesn't mean that it isn't useful to notice 
the difference.

> And let's be wary of falling into the thinking-trap whereby no decision
> is "rational" because no process of decision-making nor source of
> knowledge can be perfectly founded.  Have you already read overviews of
> rational philosophy on the web to get a good idea of where your thinking
> fits?
> Or did I miss your point?

Maybe you did, or maybe I'm missing some point you're making.  I don't 
understand what you're trying to say about thinking-traps here.  Does it 
have something to do with my claim that (1) and (2), while both being 
kinds of rationality are at extreme ends of a scale?

> Oh, and please don't confuse rationality with morality.  If the
> difference isn't clear, I am happy to discuss it.

I think I left out morality this time around.  Does it appear that I 
made a reference to it?

I think that, for babies, every day is first love in Paris. Every
wobbly step is skydiving, every game of hide and seek is Einstein
in 1905.--Alison Gopnik (http://edge.org/q2005/q05_9.html#gopnik)

Chris Hibbert
hibbert at mydruthers.com
Blog:   http://pancrit.org

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