The problem with the Gettier problem is that knowledge is not a random collection of atomic facts. It’s a system. Like all systems, from a certian point of view, it’s self-referential.

Most people don’t think of knowledge as some absolute perfection, a goal, an ideal. Most regular people think of it as lying along a continuum. We learn more of the system (here, a subsystem) as we go along. Regular people think of knowledge as dynamic. That knowledge is useful because it confers power. That’s good enough for most peoople.

It’s why we hate lawyers.

Or become one.

Therefor we adapt after realizations?
What kind of reader were you hoping to reach with your msg?

Your second question is surely rhetorical. I have no idea if anyone here has ever heard of Gettier. Ironically, nearlt everyone here seems to be an epistemologist.

Is this it?


An interesting thread Faust, but do you have a question that you want answering? So guidance, if you please…

No. Im just thought I’d bring up an epistemological problem that wasn’t generated by a guy in a robe. Even though it was a guy in a robe that started all of this. Or two guys.

Hoping to snag a Gettier fan.

Maybe this belongs in the sand pit, or the dirtpile, or whatever that other forum is.

no yeah i remember that guy. in fact, the old ILP member ‘she’ - remember ‘she’? - sent me a print out of the problem in the mail with a copy of craig’s ‘reasonable faith’, back in 2010. no kidding. but i vaguely remember the details, only that she was implying that not all true belief is justified (trying to turn me christian, bro), which the paper defended quite well.

seems to me i thought that this wasn’t a remarkable epistemological problem, but i can’t remember delving into it. couldn’t we just say that that the dude was accidentally right? we only call smith’s true belief ‘unjustified’ because the entailment was accidental. so he was right - the guy who gets the job will have ten coins in his pocket - but that guy is him, which he doesn’t know.

i dunno maybe i’m missing the significance of the problem. lemme check it out later and get back into it. i’m just popping off what i vaguely remember from the paper.

It belongs in a shit-hole, not a dirt-pile…so ILP is the perfect abysmal void.

^^^ now what the hell was that!?

Jesus Christ dude. we can’t take you anywhere. We’re gonna have to start putting you on one of those dollies they put Hannibal lecter on whenever they moved him.

The Gettier problem merely shows that, at least in some senses of the word “justification”, there are justified true beliefs that are not knowledge which implies that JTB is not a sufficient condition for knowledge.

Suppose that Plato believes that Socrates has a beard. You ask him for justification (“Hey Plato, why do you think that Socrates has a beard?”) and he presents you with the following argument:

Premise 1: Socrates is a man.
Premise 2: All men have a beard.
Conclusion: Socrates has a beard.

Even though the conclusion follows from the premises (which means it’s justified) and even though Socrates does in fact have a beard (which means the conclusion is true), the resulting belief is not knowledge because the second premise, which is that all men have a beard, is not true, and that means that Plato arrived at truth by accident. That’s the Gettier problem.

Assuming we all agree that the above conclusion is justified (which means that we all agree on the definition of the word “justification”) and that we all agree that it is not knowledge (most of us won’t agree we know something if we figured it out by chance), we can resolve the problem simply by adding an additional condition to the existing JTB criterion, that condition being “Every premise in the argument must be true.”

So, more accurately, knowledge can be said to be a belief that is justified by true premises. So there you go. Now if you have a need for a more accurate model of the meaning of the word “knowledge”, you know what to use. But I am sure that Plato’s account is more than useful in most of the situations.

The Gettier problem is not much of a problem, so I don’t really understand the point of this thread.

Indeed, but I’ve learned something new… an interesting philosophical problem to ponder on, over one’s morning cornflakes or nightly nightcap.

The point of this thread is other than the thread’s title.

As they say in the south…
“Gettier done!!!”.

Crocodile baiting.

a lot of that goes on in the south, in fact. ever heard the story of amos moses?

Now everyone blamed his old man
For making him mean as a snake
When Amos Moses was a boy
His daddy would use him for alligator bait
Tie a rope around his neck and throw him in the swamp
Alligator bait in the Louisiana bayou

I think it’s a fair critique of Gettier…
that, yes, in certain instances jtb can miss something
does not eliminate it as a good overarching heuristic for knowledge in general. We don’t have to throw out the baby just cause sometimes he’s got some bathwater on him.

I do think the T misleading, however, in jtb.

Because JTB looks like a set of criteria and while we can check the justification and check the belief criteria we cannot check the T criterion except by looking at the J, it makes for a messy concept.

Yes, the T is meant to be metaphysical not an epistemological criterion. IOW it will not have been knowledge if we later figure out that it wasn’t true.

But I think that since the three letters are not all of the same category, it’s a bad way to frame the idea. And ungainly as it may be

I think a well J-ed B that is not falsified is a better abstract description of knowledge and more directly fits. That’s what we work with in situ. WEll justified beliefs that are not, so far, falsified.

Of course that’s off the topic of Gettier.

If something is not entirely true, it does not mean it’s entirely false. More importantly, if something is not entirely true, it does not mean it’s useless.

The idea that JTB is a necessary and sufficient condition for knowledge is not entirely true (given specific definition of the word “justification”) and that’s what Edmnund Gettier showed. But it’s not entirely false either since JTB still remains a necessary condition for knowledge.

Did Edmund Gettier (who’s still alive and kicking) ever say that Plato’s account of knowledge is entirely false?

If someone’s poking holes in a theory, does that mean they are trying to “destroy” that theory i.e. to show that it’s completely false and useless? I don’t think so. So one must be aware not to presume too much.

A well-justified belief that is not falsified can still be false.

I agree.



Of course. But that’s the position we are always in. I am trying to frame a theory of knowledge or criteria that are useful. To me adding in ‘true’ along with ‘justified’ doesn’t give me anything to work with. I can only look at the justification. Here I am, a human with limited knowledge. I can look at the justification and evaluate it and think…that’s very good. But I can’t then go check the truth of the belief and think…oh, good, it’s also true. I can only look at the justification and whether anything out there ruins that justificaiton - perhaps a clear counterexample - the black swan, whatever.

Now i know that the T is not intended as a criterion that we check off. But I think it makes JTB confused, because you do check off the justification and whether the person believes it. I think JB works better, with the proviso that nothing demonstrates it is false.

This is, in fact, how they work with knowledge in science. Does the evidence strongly support the hypothesis? There is no check where the scientists then check something else or use some other process to see if it is true. If something comes along and falsifies it later, then we find out that what we considered knowledge was not, or was only partially correct or correct in X conditions. Knowledge may always have to be revised.

There is no God’s eye view that tells us that a belief is both very well justified and true. We just have the justification.

Revision stems from from a premonition, and premonition are vaguely connected in some measure to am original hypothesis.

Then, it’s sense of justification. Only derived from a prior attempt at reverse justification .

When the apple fell on Newton, sure, the utility came much later on, it was realized at a.point which now days can enable to transcend temporal considerations , but then again , it’s utilization not widely connected to it’s
derived function.

Faust, I think that Nietzsche and philosophers somewhat like him such as Anaximander, would hold that there is only one piece of true knowledge (e.g. “the world is will to power and nothing besides”) and that all possible other knowledge is conditional on that, and thus never atomic.

Such a philosopher would not be interested in pointing out facts, rather he would reveal angles, perspectives, and, as Pedro said, make points.