Argument Of Larry Laudan 's Pessimistic Meta Induction

1444 Words Nov 17th, 2016 6 Pages
This essay examines the argument of Larry Laudan’s Pessimistic Meta Induction (PMI.) The PMI states that due to the history of unsuccessful theories, the theories we currently believe are true most likely aren’t. I argue that the Pessimistic Meta Induction is fallacious, easily proven invalid by realist logic, and inapplicable to modern science. Due to advancements in science, arguments made in the PMI are no longer applicable, and several fallacies can be seen it as well including the turnover fallacy and gamblers fallacy. These inaccuracies will prove his theory to be improbable. The Pessimistic Meta Induction is one of the most notable arguments against scientific realism, it specifically rebuts the scientific realist notion of epistemic optimism. The argument presented by scientific realist defends that it is rational to believe that our presently successful scientific theories are true or approximately true, where approximate truth is defined as a theory being able to make novel predictions towards what the central terms of such theories genuinely refer. The Pessimistic Meta Induction undermines the realist 's warrant for epistemic optimism by using historical counter examples. The theory centers around this historical pattern of scientific theories being abolished and replaced, essentially deeming the old theories false. Because of this the Pessimistic Meta Induction argues that current scientific theories will eventually be deemed false as well, and therefore we…
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