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Undoubtable Pragmatists
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Really Dreaming Deceiving
Plato argues against the type of ruler, who rules solely by might in The Republic. The argument stands as a defense against Machiavellian society: In practicing a skill, we do not aim to go beyond, but only to hit the right point. Virtue is a kind of skill, and this requires a knowledge of what is the right measure. The unjust man, therefore, is not exercising much of a skill, is he? Nor is the tyrant doing much of a job at ruling. One cannot claim to play a higher F-sharp than anyone else - since we all know that F-sharp is F-sharp, and there cannot be higher or lower F-sharp's. It is the just man who knows the proper note; it is the unjust man who exceeds it and goes out of tune in his life. It is injustice, then, that is the fool's game. It destroys individuals, as it destroys states.(Plato, The Republic. 349E, P. 35-36)
Dewey is asking us to accept the selective emphasis of the "inconclusive integrity of experience" as a starting point, but by doing so he is guilty of what he criticizes. How can there be "an empirical account of inconclusive integrity of experience," if experience is always changing? There cannot. What would define the account? Experience? Experience cannot be defined if it constantly changes. If experience is constantly changing, it can only be used to direct us to new and better meaning. If the "inconclusive integrity of experience" is the starting point for Dewey's philosophic method, it can not also begin with current society. It must start with the first experience. Either the basis for philosophic discussion is a historical account of the inconclusive integrity of man or the experiences of current society in which one finds oneself. It cannot serve both. One is based upon the refection of historical data without the benefit of experience, the other on the reflection of experience in the current society or culture. The experiences of past cultures may very well have been much different, and therefore they cam to different conclusions about those experiences.
04/02/2006 0 Comments | Add Comment
 
 
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Yet no art can deliberately aim at a negative result. The death of a patient is not a triumph of medicine but a failure. The creation of evil is not an accomplishment of justice, but a failure of justice. (335 D, P. 15-16)

Plato was prepared to say that the truly just person, whose soul is ordered, is beyond tragedy, and cannot be harmed. Such a person is leading a meangingful life, as against the immoral person. Moreover, Plato extended his theory of the Soul to encapsulate the perfect government,
 
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