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Monday, January 14, 2013


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I assume that the second occurrence of 'predicate' in the first parenthetical remark in A is a typo and you meant to say 'property'.

Yes indeed. Thanks for the correction.

You said this:

"Therefore, there is something in, at, or about the cat, something extralinguistic, that grounds the correctness of the application of the predicate to the cat"

If the state of affairs described above is actual, then apparently, by your lights --it is extralinguistic---nothing to do with language--- and you are using words only to describe something which is the state of affairs that is actual and not linguistic.
So, this,
The actual state of affairs wherein there is a verbal statement, consisting of words, is also, apparently, extralinguistic---nothing to do with words.
And then this,
And the actual state of affairs wherein there is a meaning or concept of the words, then, is apparently also extralinguistic--nothing to do with words. Meaning can be extralinguistic--nothing to do with words?

So what then is linguistic at all?-- and what is the difference between extralinguistic and linguistic?


In regards to your comments, I suspect many people (such as me) have your blog in a feed reader. My suspicion is that, when the feed reader updates its sites, it "pings" each site it checks one time. Therefore, though I was not interested in ostrich nominalism(I consider the lack of interest a personal defect, really), I nonetheless upped your feed count due to using Google Reader to peruse my blogs.



Interesting comment. You seem to be referring to the following state of affairs:

S. The predicate 'black''s being true of Max in virtue of Max's having the property of being black.

And you seem to be raising the question whether (S) is an extralinguistic state of affairs. Well, it cannot be wholly extralinguistic. (S) exists only if the English language does. It is not wholly intralinguistic either like

T. 'Cat''s having three letters.

The earth's beings pheroid wuould be an example of a wholly extralinguistic state of affairs in that it obtains whether or not any language exists.


While your observation about what might be called inherently language-facts is correct, it does not seem to me to weigh heavily against Bill's overall position regarding ostrich nominalism. The later rejects wholesale that certain true statements involving predicates requires an extralinguistic entity such as properties. Bill only needs to show that some such statements seem to require such extralinguistic entities. He need not show that all true statements require an extralinguistic truth-maker. Hence, Bill's position is compatible with your observation.

Thanks, Peter. By the way, do you see the difference between the ostrich nominalist and the ostrich realist? Van Inwagen would be an example of the latter.


But I don't think that explains the surge. The day ended with 3, 565 pageviews. Normally I might get 1500-1800 in a day.

The crack about ostrich nominalism was a joke. Politics and religion draws people, not topics of interest only to professional philosophers.

I am wondering if Google is going through my entire site and capturing and archiving the content.


I suppose the Ostrich Realist is intimately committed to a deflationary approach to truth, etc. So while the Ostrich Nominalist at least takes a metaphysical stand by denying a metaphysical position about the existence of properties, the Ostrich Realist wishes to endorse the truth of (1) without explaining what makes it true: hence, deflationary character.

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