Beastrabban\'s Weblog

Kittysjones over on her blog has an interesting piece dissecting the very basic errors of philosophy and methodology underpinning the Tories’ promotion of austerity. It’s entitled Austerity is a Con, the Tories are Authoritarians and They Conflate the Fact/Value Distinction. I disagree with none of this. She argues from her own experience of studying sociology at university. She notes that sociology is not a hard science, and so does not have the same claim to be presenting objective fact. The researcher’s own personal views can colour their interpretation of a given situation, and their choice of methodology can determine the results of their research to give a partial and biased picture of the situation. She also notes that the Conservatives also violate one of the major rules in philosophy: that one cannot derive values from facts. For example, violence is a part of human nature. Observation of chimpanzees hunting…

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