Thursday, March 31, 2011

Vaguely True Liars

My next 4 posts explore, informally and briefly, the possibility that Liar utterances are about as true as not. Abstract:
I suggest that Liar statements – e.g. ‘this is false’ – are about as true as not. In other words, they are vaguely true, and vaguely false. And truth does seem to come in degrees (e.g. if a colour is about as blue as not, calling it ‘blue’ would be about as true as not). I also suggest that ‘this is not even vaguely true’ can be called ‘vaguely true’, even though it may then seem false, not just vaguely false. That’s because it is, more precisely, vaguely more vaguely true (similarly, a colour that’s roughly as blue-green as it is blue would usually be called ‘blue’ becaue it is a faintly greenish blue). I give similar resolutions to the paradoxes of Kurt Grelling and Keith Simmons, while I regard as of a different kind those of Bertrand Russell and Haskell Curry.
Links to the 4 posts:

......Introduction (via Grelling’s paradox)

......Liar statements are about as true as not

......My ‘revenge’ paradox (and Yablo’s paradox)

......Russell, Cantor, Curry, and Simmons’ paradox

An application of the above is a common sense refutation of the Divine Liar argument (against omniscience), see my Liars, Divine Liars, and Semantics revisited (in April’s issue of The Reasoner).

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