Just a holding post for now. Will have to digest and comment on this later, but first impression is disbelief. (I recall being unimpressed by Wolpert when I saw him in a debate a couple of years ago, must dig up the blog.)
[Post Note: I did in fact go back to try to make some specific comments, but found myself just as speechless at the pure arrogance of the man, that it hardly seemed worth the effort to construct any arguments – far more fruitful avenues for dialogue. What I did pick up was this lone comment, which says pretty eloquently all that needs saying:
AvProtestant on 11/09/2014 10:00pm – Reading Wolpert’s comments I’m reminded of what J S Mill said of Jeremy Bentham:
“[He] failed in deriving light from other minds. His writings contain few traces of the accurate knowledge of any schools of thinking but his own; and many proofs of his entire conviction that they could teach him nothing worth knowing.“]
[Post Post Note: Also as promised I went back to dig out my previous Wolpert encounter. Amusingly, the previous encounter was exactly like this one – so abysmal I could’t be arsed to digest and comment. The previous encounter I was thinking of was this one, and even then the best I could manage was that …
The scientists [inc Wolpert] were frankly embarrassingly arrogant in seeing no alternatives to scientism, despite significant definitional debate around narrow and broad conceptions of objectivity, empiricism and methods of science in “the view from nowhere” and truth defined anywhere from “objective fact” to pragmatism. Embarrassing that they see only scale and complexity of detail in the ultimate tractability of everything falling under science, ignoring the paradoxes (eg in the zombie thought experiment) and non-linearity in the position of game-changing intentional consciousness in the game of life as we know it.
Also spookily close to my current readings of Nagel, in the next post. The language, years apart, is so …. identical.]