[ExI] Zombie glutamate

John Clark johnkclark at gmail.com
Thu Feb 19 21:32:58 UTC 2015

On Thu, Feb 19, 2015 at 10:12 AM, Stathis Papaioannou <stathisp at gmail.com>

> If the eyeballs are removed the subject can still remember and describe
> visual experiences while if the entire visual cortex is removed they can't.

I don't believe that's true, one of the symptoms of cortical blindness is
VISUAL hallucinations. And there are other interesting symptoms, sometimes
a person is blind as a bat but insists he can see just fine, and sometimes
it's just the opposite and blindsight happens, he insists that he's blind
but can nimbly maneuver through a obstacle course without error, when the
patient is informed about his success he insists that he must have just
gotten lucky because he's blind.  For a reductio ad absurdum it's not
enough for the conclusion to be absurd, it must also be false.

> > the only assumption is that consciousness is due to something in the
> brain

OK, but you have no way of proving what that "something" is, and this isn't
just because of technological limitations, you have no way of proving it
even in theory. A proof isn't worth much if one of the steps in it requires
you to perform a impossible task.

> >  and then we consider what happens if we partly replace that something
> with a non-conscious but otherwise normally functioning analogue.

And since you don't know what that "something" is you have no way of
knowing if that replacement part has it or not. So maybe it's conscious and
maybe it's not.

  John K Clark
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