Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Relativism

Quality is relative. Diversity is relative.

I said in an earlier post that relativity is not an excuse to give up evaluating relativity. I realized that there are two tests for statements in terms of relativity. One is to test the statements for internal consistency and the other is to test it for external consistency.

The August Schulenberg "distinction" between value and quality, in a way, is actually the same proposition, except that the former measures external consistency and the latter measures internal consistency: "Value" being comparing the production to its impact in the community. "Quality" being comparing the production to its internal logic, its effectiveness as a unique piece of theater, and to its place in the aesthetic world.

Obviously, we don't want play to be as only matching up to the internal logic. That is the definition of "Truthiness." The extremists of the world spin a web of information that only has to agree with itself. Does it matter what the health care bill actually says -- it only matters that it fit into the narrative. That's the downside of internal logic.

Something that has only external consistency, but no internal logic, is like Wikipedia without links, neurons without synapses, words without grammar. It's like an excel spreadsheet of raw data: each point may be accurate, but they don't add up to anything.

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