Universal Salvage Corporation

Specialists in Dying Civilizations

On Definitions & Semantic Precision

by William W Morgan

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Revised: 2006, May 20


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Synopsis

Precise, absolute definitions and semantic precision are necessary for the creation of new and useful knowledge, And to effectively communicate this to other people.

A major reason we have made such great progress in technology is because in that area of knowledge there are precise and absolute definitions for the operative terms. Regardless of language, culture, religion, ethnic origin, the terms mean the same thing to everyone.

This situation does not exist on what is commonly called "social science." And is a major reason we have never been able to solve any of other basic societal problems.


Background

I doubt that without language what will become a thinking specie can even wonder why things happen in nature. Why the rivers rise and fall. Whey there is rain and no rain. Light and no light.

For very early man[ 1 ] evolving in Africa there would have been almost no changing of the seasons as we know them in the northern hemisphere. With temperature variations of perhaps forty degrees C or more.

One less thing to stimulate the mind and provoke “wonder”. Thoughts of why things happen. It would seem that such thoughts — if they could exist without language — would not happen.

For one thing, seasons as we know them in the northern hemisphere did not exist in the plains of Africa. For another, man might not have survived the rigors of the cold North without a diet to support it and proper shelter. A reason man evolved in Africa instead of the less hospitable northern latitudes. Although Neanderthal did. But I am thinking of millions of years ago, during the very early evolution of man.

But with the beginnings of language man could begin to wonder why things happened. Thoughts of cause and effect. Yet without any understanding of the laws of nature there could be no certainty. Only speculation. Yet you can not speculate without language. I doubt that you could do much planning for the future without language.

Definitions are tested by the laws of nature and by usage. By being corroborated by history and current events. By testing them against that which is observable in the world around you.

To be useful, a definition must be absolute. Meaning that it must be correct under all conditions. Regardless of time, location, ethnic origin, religion, or anything else.

This is what has allowed for the creation of our technological world. For the creation and continued improvement of TV sets, computers, refrigerators, automobile, airplanes, etc. Because the definition of the operative words related to these technologies are or very near absolute.

And they mean the same to a person whether they are Christian or Muslim, Russian, Chinese, or American, or have skin colors varying from white to black. And, with a proper understanding of color you should realize that a white person is “colored”, and a black person is not “colored”. As white is the presence of all colors, and black is the absence of color…

So, semantic precision can be amusing as well us useful.

It is the failure to apply semantic precision and the concept of absolute definitions in the knowledge and discussions related to what is commonly and incorrectly called “social science” that is at the heart of our failure to solve any of our societal problems. But this is the subject of other essays, and I will not pursue that thread here.

I am reminded of the story of a grandmother who was deaf and mute. And the grand daughter saw her sleeping in a chair on the porch, dreaming. She was dreaming in “sign”. the hand–language used by deaf and mute people.

With the beginnings of language there are fewer words available. In some ways this would make it both more difficult and easier to create definitions. While at the same time your knowledge of the world around you is still very sparse. Fear and apprehension of your world might necessarily have been greater. Because you had no idea why things happened or what their effect on you might be.

For your own sense of security, and as a beginning to understand why things happened, you and others invent reasons. And speculate and wonder.

But in order to solve a problem you must know why things happen. And the more and better the knowledge in this area, the better the chance of finding a solution. The better your knowledge on the subject and the more accurate your definitions are, the better will be your chance of understanding cause and effect and of solving a problem.

The “Head of Technology” for an early tribe would have been the “witch doctor”. The one who could offer reasons as to why things happen or don’t happen. As you can speculate, this could be — then as now — a powerful position. Especially if there is also the thought that the person might be able to influence future events.

To the extent that an individual understands their world — or believes they understand it — they will feel confident in their ability to cope with it. Very essential to making progress. For if you feel you have and can have no control over things, it is difficult to understand and improve things.

Lack of knowledge allows mysticism to arise and to flourish. As I said, the first providers of definitions were the “witch doctors”. (I believe now they are referred to as “spin doctors”?) The providing of plausible definitions gave them great power. And, as I state in my essay on The Origin and Purpose of Religions, this is the origin of religions. The belief in things based on faith, mysticism, superstition. Religion is nothing more than institutionalized mysticism.

When speaking of religion people may sometimes refer to it as being a “fabulous” thing. We need to think about that word. What does it mean? What it means is “Of or related to fables”. Which may also be “wonderful”. But they are also not something of “fact” Not related to facts, rationality, reality.

I believe this is necessary in the beginning, when little is known of the natural world. But it must be dispensed with as soon as possible. As I have said elsewhere, “A prayer a day keeps rationality away”.

The explanation of why something happens requires some “operative words” to describe the happening and its supposed cause. The beginning of the use of definitions.

As a thinking specie we made virtually zero progress in the creation of any form of technology until we began to have a few, nearly absolute definitions. Millions of years had passed before even the wheel appeared. Before someone noticed that steam produced pressure in a closed vessel. Or that it was in fact “pressure”. And then thought that this might be useful. The first hint of this came from Hero of Alexandria in about 130 BC.

It is quite possible that he created what in effect was a steam turbine. But that's another story…

That there was something interesting about a chandelier swinging back and forth at the end of a chain in a church. One of the very few times that something moral and rational occurred in a church. You know of course that the person watching was Galileo. Thiss led to the concept of the periodic movement of the pendulum, and then to the clock. Something that was of true and great value to Homo sapiens. This was only within the past four hundred years. Almost nothing compared to the more than four million years of evolution required to reach this point.

It was only when someone codified or elaborated the process for creating new knowledge, which included the need for the best possible definitions, that Homo Sapiens started to create new and useful knowledge at an ever–increasing rate.

But even up into the Middle Ages, until the late 16th century, speculation ran rampant as to why things happened in nature. Which still seemed incomprehensible. That nature and its laws were comprehensible. For real progress in our understanding of nature, and for the beginnings of real technology, we had to get beyond this point.

We needed to not only understand and realize that nature was comprehensible. But to have the intellectual tools necessary to understand and explain this comprehension. And to this we also needed reliable, consistent, and increasingly accurate definitions.

In 1666, unnoticed in a world occupied by the plague, this happened. For the first time we know of, someone set down some definitions and the method of creating new and useful knowledge. This man was Isaac Newton.

For a short time, even he may not have thought of the generalization of what he had done. Of the eloquent and elegant statement that he was making: That “… the Universe is comprehensible. And here is how to comprehend it”.

In his creation and analysis of the laws of motion and the “law of gravity,”, he had created what is now known as The Scientific Method. The epistemological tool that Homo Sapiens would use to create what is now known as “technology”. And their modern technological world.

When Newton eventually published Principia in 1687 it set in motion the events that would lead to what is known as The Industrial Revolution. We had the epistemological tool to determine whether a hypothesis was right or not right. And to disseminate the knowledge for all to think about and act on. Using the Gutenberg press, which had been invented around 250 years earlier and was coming into use. And facilitated by “scientific societies”, which were beginning to spring up everywhere.

Yet it would be another seventy five years before the ideas in Principia started to spread. With their translation into French by the great Émilié du Châtelet[ 02 ]. This brought the knowledge of what Newton had accomplished to Europe, and a much wider audience. As she wrote in French, and not in Latin. Until that time, only those who could read Latin had access to hiw knowledge. Including how to create new and useful knowledge.

In Principia was buried the method Newton had used to create and to verify his hypothesis concerning motion. And thus turn it into a theory. Two very important and misused words there: Hypothesis and Theory. Most people believe they are the same, but they are not.

Principia not only said that the universe is comprehensible, but also it said “… and here is how to comprehend it”. How to continuously create new and useful knowledge.

This now brings out another fallacy, which is very important and will be the next one discussed: That you can’t use the rules for creating new technical knowledge for anything “related to people”. That people are not “things”, etc.

This is another fallacy that must be dispensed with before you will understand any of the other fallacies. And be in a position to create, accept, and to use new and useful knowledge that will begin to solve our societal problems.

Principles

If you believe that definitions are not important I would like you to think about something. A thought experiment, as Einstein would do.

You believe we all have our own definitions, and they are not really important. The thing that comes from the hose at the petrol station you refer to as “petrol” or, if you are an American, “gasoline”. Or simply “gas”. Already we seem to have a problem, as these — gasoline and gas — are not the same. But well will forget that for the time being.

However, I prefer to call this substance “sugar”. And that is what comes out of the hose at my “petrol station”. Maybe I use it to create alcohol, which is then burned to provide motive power for my vehicles? Anyway, I am that — since definitions are not important — you won”t mind if I put some of my petrol in the tank of your car? After all, “petrol is petrol”.

Interesting, Adolf Hitler was a great lover of freedom. Perhaps something many people do not know about him. But I believe he had a different definition for it than most other people. I know it is not the same as the definition I use and prefer.

I believe there are several principle I want to set forth here. I will start with Newton’s elegant statement:

1) “The Universe is comprehensible”.

I don’t know that he actually made this exact statement as a separate thing. Rather, it is the implied statement in his great book Principia mathematica.

2) That in order to create new and useful knowledge — and dispel fallacies &mash; it is necessary to use what is commonly called “the Scientific Method”. The steps of which are:

There are four steps in the Scientific Method:

1) Observation

The gathering of facts

2) Hypotheses

Generalization of the factsGeneralization of the facts

3) Extrapolation

Extending the subject into new, previously unconsidered or uncorroborated areas of knowledge. Making a conclusion concerning the facts. This is the step which can create new knowledge.

4) Observation

Observations made to test the hypothesis and the extrapolation for rightness. If there is verification, and if the thought processes have been valid, then — and only then — does one have a theory.

This reminds me of a very perceptive and important statement by the great Hungarian physicist Albert Szent–Györgyi von Nagryapolt (1893–1985), who said:

Discovery consists in seeing what everyone else has seen,
and thinking what no one else has thought.

Please, think about that. When something new and interesting and nice comes on the market and makes millions for someone, what is your thought? “How simple! Why didn’t I think of that?” You and the inventor might quite possibly have seen the same things. But you did not think the same.

To dispel your false assumptions that the Scientiic Method will not work with knowledge related to people, how they behave, and our societal system, you will need to think very deeply about what I have said. About the Scientific Method and how it works. About the laws of nature as they apply to thinking beings. There is a beginning discussion on this in Darwin and Anarchy. I plan to write an essay on this subject.

The last two principles on this subject relate to the definitions of hypothesis and theory. Although you could consult the definitions in another area, I will repeat them here.

Hypothesis
An uncorroborated explanation for a phenomenon or phenomena”.
Theory
The explanation for a phenomenon or phenomena that can be corroborated by The Scientific Method”.
or,
“The one and only correct [corroborated] explanation for a phenomenon&ldquol.

With this as a basis we can now proceed to the first fallacy. That of the fact that definitions are not important.

Image

The image of science and of the scientific method is that is not “warm and fuzzy”, and could not possibly be used for things related to people.

Since you realize it is not being so used now, I would like to ask you to look at the result of this. Do you consider our current societal system and the status of our society to be “warm and fuzzy”? To be good? What do you think of the product? Famine, poverty, war, malnutrition, inflation and deflation, an appalling educational system, health care system that can’t deliver health, unemployment, and all our other societal problems.

It is hard to know whether this statement should appear in “Image” or “Reality”. There is the image: It is appalling. And that is also the reality.

Reality

The reality is that in millennia of trying we have not solved even one of our societal problems. Rather, they become ever–more endemic and intractable.

And the major reason for this is our failure to use proper definitions and semantic precision. And the tried and proven method for creating new and useful knowledge. The "Scientific Method."

I have a very had time understanding this. Yet I must try to do so. To put myself in the position of those who accept things based on what they are told, without stopping to think if it is true or not. Or, more correctly, if it is right. Because, as you see from the definition I use, the concept of "rightness" includes morality. And only thinking beings are involved with the concept of morality.

Knowledge itself is amoral. That is, it has no moral content. It is only when action is taken based on knowledge that morality come into effect. An action can either be moral or immoral. And when the action results in interference in the property of another person, then that action is immoral.

Importance of Definitions in Daily Life

Maybe the best way the stress the importance of definitions is if you want someone to perform a service for you. And maybe you wonder if they will do exactly what you want.

Isn’t it best to explain things to them clearly and completely? If you want them to check the transmission on your car you tell them that. And perhaps that "… there is a problem with second gear." The better and more clearly you tell them about the problem, the better the results should be. If, despite the fact that you tell them very accurately and in great detail what is wrong and they do not solve the problem, then the problem is really with them. And not you.

And what have you done? For one thing, you have been very clear in your definitions. You said the transmission, and not the engine or the differential. You specified a problem with a "gear." And a specific gear. Which is perhaps getting into the area of semantic precision. But it is hard to separate the two, and both are very important.

Maybe I sound as if I am "straining" to say something Which is true. As the entire subject is very simple to me. And I think will be to you also if you only take time to think about it. Including to think whether you feel I am right or wrong.

Which you should always do when evaluating anything for truth. And it is very, very important to simply not take everyone's word for anything that is said.

A person should, and most people probably will, assign a "credit rating" to things said by various people. If one person consistently says things you have found to be true, and never states anything you have found to be false, then it makes sense to accept the next thing they say. And to perhaps only make periodic "spot checks" on things. A valid concept in "quality control."

As the great Leonard Reed said:

"Indeed, any serious student will want to read any book with care and discrimination, gleaning from it such truth as he can find, and rejecting that which to him seems false or misleading."[ 2 ]

But for your own self interest and self–esteem you should try to be certain about your analysis of the rightness of anything. And consider rightness rather than if it is merely "correct" in the sense of being arrived at based on true premises and valid and logical thought process. Check for the morality if someone were to implement the idea or have done so.

All Knowledge is Related

For me there is major problem in explaining things. Because all knowledge is related. So immediately I start thinking about history and historical events. Which we must if were are to solve our societal problems.

But thinking about whether a famous person in history acted morally or immorally gets into the area of whether or not they are important in history. Which I have as a separate "fallacy." Most people commonly thought to be important in history or in daily, current life are in fact not important. This is determined by how much property they created or destroyed.

Most prominent people in history have huge negative importance. And no amount of bronze statues or monuments will cure this.

Napoleon is a good example. By not using absolute definitions almost everyone says Napoleon was "an important historical figure." Or simply, "… he was important." Which he was not. Even when he rates thirty or so pages in the encyclopedia in comparison to one or less for Isaac Newton.

Napoleon was a serial killer. But politics allows for this when one is the ruler. Perhaps even allowing an "emperor" to kill more people than a plain old "king." Actually, he was directly responsible for the death of millions of people. And for the destruction of vast amounts of property. Plus, his actions impoverished France and Europe for a century.

This was an "important" man?! There are a number of words that accurately fit him, but "important" is not one of them.

Think of the people who were contemporaries of Napoleon and were truly important. Such as Ampére, Jane Austin, Beethoven. These people did not destroy property, they created it. And brought pleasure to people, not death and destruction. Who was important in history? These people or Napoleon?

Are definitions "important"? Truly important in the proper sense of the word? Or is it only words…?

Results

The result of the failure to use absolute definitions and semantic precision, and what is commonly called "the Scientific Method" is the world we live in today.

A world in which we make great progress in technology. Which represents virtually the only real news, and good news. And zero progress in solving our societal problems.

One of the best ways to check if a person knows what they are talking about is to ask them what they mean by the things they say. When they say this new law won't effect your "freedom." Ask them the definition they use for "freedom."

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Case Study

I may not use this in discussing every fallacy, but because of a newspaper article I just read I think it can certainly be useful in this fallacy.

The title of the article is "NAM argues over terror definition." This is both a very timely subject and important. Even the title tells us something. The "NAM" is the alignment of nations devoted to nations that are supposedly not aligned. They advertise themselves as being non aligned, and it is part of their name.

Yet they are aligned. Aligned for the purpose of pushing their agenda against those that are aligned with some other agenda in mind. It is all very confusing to a person with a simple mind.

Which brings up another thought, just found in Henry Grady Weaver's The Mainspring of Human Progress. He points out a tactic of Lenin, who was very good at getting his ideas across to others. According to Weaver, Lenin instructed his followers "to first confuse the vocabulary."[ 3 ] Weaver goes on by saying that "He knew that thinking can be done only in words and that accurate thinking required words of precise meaning." The emphasis is mine.

Which or course Lenin can then proceeded to avoid. And, as Weaver points out, the result is that "communication of logical thought has become increasingly difficult." I think that is a huge understatement.

This is amply illustrated in the article describing how members of the NAM strive for a mutually acceptable definition of what comprises "terror." And of course mutually agreed does not mean it is correct. But such a definition it will be!

As the article pointed out, at the moment there is a seventy six page draft (76 pages!) of their epic work.

Before I go any further, I will propose a definition for terrorism. And the rest of my discussion will be based on this.

Terrorism:

"Any act that creates a feeling of terror in an individual."

You will of course say that this is too simple. After all, it is less than seventy six pages. Further, if someone snips off a flower as they pass your garden, does this provoke terror? Well, it is possible. After all, it could be the only flower of its type on the planet. And experimental one it has taken you forty years to create. Your life's work is gone.

But it could also have been when a criminal invades your house and rapes you daughter in front of you. I have read of this happening in America. You might agree that this would provoke terror?

An act that creates a feeling of terror in one person may provoke only minor irritation in another. But we are talking about principles and a precise, absolute definition. Further, even the "snipping" of the flower is a criminal act.

The article points out that one of the stumbling blocks was the difference between "a terrorist and a freedom fighter."

Recently I have noticed something related to his. Anyone in the army of a "democratic" political state should be referred to as a "soldier." But if the individual is not in the army of a "democratic" state and is fighting in the sense of armed fighting, then they are deemed a "fighter," and not a soldier.

Thus in Afghanistan the discredited Taliban régime only had "fighters" on their side, and not soldiers. Even though they had become the ruling régime in the a manner used very commonly the world over. They had staged a rebellion against the previous régime, or had invaded the country and won the war.

The American régime of course started that way. They stage an armed rebellion against legally constituted authority in what is commonly referred to as "the American colonies." They won the war against the legally constituted régime and thereby became the new legally constituted régime. But, back to NAM…

One participant comments that there is a need for us (presumably NAM to "fight against terrorism in a cooperative manner." Perhaps as the United States and Britain cooperated in attacking the legally constituted régime in Afghanistan. By declaring war against it. Not formally of course. They only used "war–ndash;like tactics," such a dropping perhaps millions of tons of bombs on the country.

Might this not provoke terror in some people? Such as those innocent civilians who are about to die or are seriously injured. Or those watching their houses and property being totally destroyed. Should the definition of "terrorism" be such that it does not include any acts by a "democratic" political entity?

We would need more exceptions if our definition is to run for seventy six pages. Many "whereas" and "notwithstanding" statements and much other waffling around. But will it be a usable definition? Will it be one that is good at all places and for all times? Is it a definition that is "useful and moral"? Does it add to the quality of life for individual thinking beings? Or, at the least, does not detract from their quality of life.

These are thoughts that should be applied to an acceptable, absolute definition. Maybe I should say why I used the word "intentionally" and emphasized it. A person could accidentally interfere with your property.

Maybe there is game of what the Americans refer to as "touch football" on the street. Someone runs out after the ball, leaps high into the air—and lands in the neighbors flower bed. Destroying the flower it took forty years to create.

It is a real tragedy of course, but it was truly accidental. The was no malice or forethought. No intent to damage property. These things do happen.

What is wrong with the definition I propose? Other than perhaps that it seems too short and too simple. But ask yourself this: If it were the accepted definition and was followed by all, would there be any acts on this planet that might have the image of terror?

If no one could or did intentionally interfere in the property of another, would there be any terror?

Maybe there is hope for the proposed definition? And a case for definitions and semantic precision…?

The word definitions here is not the latest, with this section of the web site being in transition. I'm still working on it! For the latest definition list, please click here.

Definitions[ 4 ]

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Absolute

"That which is independent of arbitrary standards of measurement."

Capitalism

"The societal structure that protects all forms of property completely."

Coercion

"Any attempted and intentional interference with the property of another."

See “Interfere,” “Interference,” and “Proprerty.”

Communism

"A quasi–ndash;economic system under which the political state controls the lives and property of all the people and claims to own[ 4 ] all property."

See Political Systems and Socialism below.

The chant for this sytem is:
"The Ruler is Out: Good riddance."
The system continues…

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Confidence

"Belief that something will happen based on rational reasons and valid thought processes."

Crime

"A successful act of coercion."

Crime Against Humanity

“The societal condition that exists when one individual is allowed to interfere in the property of another or the act of doing so.”

The problem is that once this interference in and control of the lives of others is a agreed to be acceptable, there is no limit and end to it.

Democracy

"A societal system in which the ruler is replaced by majority voting of those ruled."

If you do not believe this, consider whether or not you really have total control of your property. Even land you own and your house, which is the real test. See Political System.

The chant for this system is:
"The Incumbent is Out: Long Live the Incumbent."
But the system continues…

Dictatorship

"A political system in which one individual is the head of the régime and controls the societal sub–group. The ruler is usually replaced only upon death, natural or otherwise."

The chant for this sytem is:
"The Dictator is Out: Good Riddance."
But the system continues…

See Political System

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Equality  (in a societal sense)

"Born and existing under the laws of nature, and having unrestricted access to the universe."

Faith

"Belief that something will happen based on irrational reasons and invalid thought processes."

Freedom

"The societal condition that exists when every individual has 100% control over their own property."

Good  (Absolute)

"Anything is an absolute good that is a subjective good to at least one person,
but which does not involve the exercise of coercion or fraud."

Good  (Subjective)

"Any phenomena, process, or action that an individual prefers that does not involve force or fraud."

Government

"A mechanism that provides property protection services."

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History

"A presentation of past events"
See Positive History below.

Human Rights

"The individual's right of access to the universe and the sanctity of property."

Hypothesis

A suggested but uncorroborated explanation for the cause of an event or phenomenon.

It may or may not be right on an absolute basis, and thus become a theory. Hypotheses become theories when validated through the epistemological concepts and steps of what is commonly known as "The Scientific Method."

As outlined by Galambos, adding the concept of "rightness" to The Scientific Method allows it to be used in validating knowledge related to a thinking specie and their societal system.
Ant. Theory

Illegal

"That which a political state decrees or states is not legal."

Note: Illegal, and rational and moral are mutually exclusive concepts.

The concepts of legal and illegal are intellectual fiction. In an advanced, rational, and durable society the words would only be known to some historians. People in general would not believe the concept if you tried to explain it to them. Just as people now can not envision a societal system without the problems we have.

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Importance

"A measure of the total amount of property created."

There is a relationship between "importance" and "urgency." Urgency is "the time rate of change of property." Please read the Importance Equation essay.

Impossible

"Any contemplated or attempted action that would result in the violation of a law of nature."

An example is that it was not impossible for man to fly 2,000 years ago. It is only that we did not yet know how. We did not understand the concept of the "wing," and air pressures over it as it moved through the air. The concept of "lift." Man could have built a successful glidder thousands of years ago. But for powered flight there were other things necessary. Understanding the laws of thermodynamics and combustion. More about metallurgy, etc. And of course the need for fuel for the engine. Or to be able to build a steam engine, etc.
See Possible below.

Injustice

"When there is a crime for which there is no recourse."

Intellectual, (An)

"One who trends toward rational thought."

This eliminates most people today that are thought to be intellectuals.

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Intellectual Honesty

"The ability to accept a theory which, by definition is right on an absolute basis, when it conflicts with existing hypotheses on the subject."

Interfere

“The act of interference.”

Interfere

“Any action the diminished the value of property as determined by the owner of the property.”

Return to or see “Coercion.”

Justice

"The condition that exists when all injustices are eliminated."

Legal

"That which a political state permits a person to do."

Liberty

"The societal condition that exists when all individuals have total control over their own property."

Monarchy

"A political system, in which the ruler is usually replaced upon death. Either natural or otherwise."

See Political System below.
The chant for this sytem is:
"The King is Dead: Long Live the King."
The system continues…

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Money  (Political)

"A medium of exchange created by or the use of which is authorized and mandated by a political state."

I do not like this definition, it is not a proper one, but it is the one I will use here. It reflects reality in primitive societal structures, such as those based on coercion.

Money  (Rational and Moral)

"A medium of exchange used in a free market."

Moral

"Any action that does not involve interference in the property of another individual."

See “Interfernce,” and “Property” definitions.

Morality

"The study of that which is moral."

Moarality and Ethics are synonyms. That which is ethical is also moral. There are too many synonyms in English. Maybe it makes for a rich languauge for poets, but it also causes a lot of problems.

National

"Of or pertaining to a nation."

From the Latin nation, basically meaning an ethnic group or "tribe." A tribe being what originally separated a group of people and made them different from each other. The modern word for tribe is "nation."

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Natural

"Pertaining to the laws of nature."

Non–ndash;Volitional Sciences

"The study of the area of knowledge not related to the societal structures of a volitional specie."

The common but incorrect word for this is science. A better is "technology."

Political System

"A socetal system based on coercion."

See also
Communism,
Democracy,
Dictatorship,
Monarchy and
Socialism.

Positive History

“The version of a historical event that tells the true cause and result of the event”

Return to History.

Possible

"Any action or intended action that would not violate a law of nature."

Return to impossible

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Profit

"Any moral increase in happiness."

Isn't that lovely? It is the creation and property of Andrew J Galambos[ 5 ]. Along with almost all of these definitions. And when you think of it, this is not only right and useful, but very elegant and beautiful

Property

There are three types of property. Plus the general concept of what constisutes property.

The general concept is:

Property

“Individual life and all non–procreative results thereof.”

For the classes of property

Primary Property

"The thoughts of an individual that become ideas."

(beliefs, opinions, theories, the concept behind inventions or products, etc.).

Secondary Property

"The tangible result of moral activities of individual life."

(Those tangible assets acquired through moral action.)

Return to or see “Coercion.”

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Right

"That which is based on true premises, valid and logical thought processes and there is no property interference."

Return to Text

Science

"The totality of all organized, right knowledge."

With credit to Herbert Spence (1820-1903) who, as far as I know, is the originator of that statement and concept. And to Andred J. Galambos (1924-1997) who introducted me to Spencer. I added the word "right," intorducing that concept into the matter. This is required in volotional knowledge, and as it allows for the measurement of the moral content of an idea or concept.
Return to Non–ndash;Volitional Sciences.

Slavery

"The condition that exists when a person does not have 100% control over their own property."
See also
Communism,
Democracy,
Dictatorship,
Monarchy and
Socialism.
They all create the condition of slavery for their victims. Commonly referred to as "citizen." Although the British use of the word "subject" is closer to the truth.

Socialism

"A political system in which the state effectively controls all property and tries to make it appear that things are "free" and people need not worry about anything."

This not an elegant definition, but true. The problem is that in principle there is little difference between communism, democracies, dictatorships, monarchies, and socialism. They are all irrational and immoral concepts that have never worked and never can work. As I mention nearly everywhere, under none of these have we ever been able to solve even one of our societal problems. This should tell us that there is something wrong…?
See Political System.

The chant for this system is:
"The Ruler is Out: Good riddance."
The system continues…

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Stealing

"The seizure of the property an individual without their consent."

Terror

"A feeling of intense fear."

This is the same definition as that provided in Webster�s New Collegiate Dictionary, 8th edition. G. & C. Merriam Company, 1979. p. 1195

Terrorism

“Intentional interference in the property of another individual”

Terrorist

“Any individual who creates a feeling of terror in another individual.”

Theory

"The one, single, corrobarated explanation for an event or phenomenon."
See Hypothesis above.

Torture

“Any interference in the property of another individual that creates a feeling of fear in the individual.”

Traitor

“Any individual who interferes in the property of another thinking being.”

Originally I said “Anyone who follows the dictates of a political state or its ruler.” But this is emotional and not correct. It is not rational to refuse to do what the dictator says. Placing the individual in a dangerous position. I am explaining this to illustrate the evolution of my thought on the subject.

Treason

“Any act that interferes in the property of another thinking being.”

True

"That which is observable."

That which is observed using any of the senses of Homo sapiens. And which can be observed and repeated by any other Homo sapien under the same conditions.

Valid

"Having a conclusion derived from true premises."

Voting  (moral)

"The act of selecting a product or service which you can return or dispose of when and if you wish, and which will not have an adverse effect on the lives and others."

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Voting  (political)

"The act of selecting a product or service which is virtually impossible to return or dispose of when and if you wish. And which will have an adverse effect on the lives and property of others."

All of these definitions were created by or brought to my attention by Andrew J. Galambos and thus should be considered his property. In some cases I may have changed them slightly. If this resulted in an improvement, then that is my property, although I could not have done it without his influence. If it is not an improvement, that is also my property, but in a negative sense. Return to Profit definition.

Copyright Information

You agree that no copies of this document may made or sent, transmitted, transported or delivered to any other person or organization without prior written permission of the copyright holder and/or author of this document. Such copies may not be made by any method now known or to be discovered in the future.

If copies of this document or portions of this document are made with the permission of the copyright holder, such copies must always carry the copyright registration information on each page as is done with the original.

Carlsoncopies[ 6 ] (photocopies) may not be made of any pages of this document, except as part of the process of reviewing it for publication, or as otherwise explicitly authorized by the author.

This agreement and notice supersedes and supplants any dictates, decrees, regulations, rules, or political laws, whether existing now or created in the future. Being immoral, such instruments have no validity.

Credits

The credit for being able to think clearly, and to understand the basis for childhood concerns of a "Government Without End," goes to my great and wonderful teacher, Andrew J. Galambos. In addition, Dr. Galambos also introduced me to a myriad of other teachers, from Aristarchus and Archimedes to Zemansky. Anyone from whom you acquire new and useful knowledge is a teacher, whether living or long dead, as in the case of Aristarchus and Archimedes.

Some of these teachers have been mentioned by name in quotations or thoughts attributed to them in this essay.

Version History
Version 1: 1983
Many unrecorded versions
Version 2: 2001, Aug 19
Version 3: 2005, Jun 1
Version 4: 2006, May 20
Version 5: 2006, May 26
Version 6: 2011, Sep 6

End Notes

  1. To use a previously common term for the name of the specie Homo sapiens, which seems to have fallen into disrepute. It is not “politically correct”, a concept which itself is not correct…
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  2. If women or anyone else are looking for important women in history, they need look no farther than Émilie du Châtelet (1706–1749), mathematician, physicist, author, courtesan. She translated Newton’s Principia from Latin into French, making it available to a much wider audience. She died tragically young in childbirth, with the translation to be published 10 years after her death. Today this edition is still condsidered the standard French translation of Principia.
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  3. Lenoard Reed (1898-1983). Attributed. But I am sure he said it, or would have said it…
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  4. Weaver, Hendry Grady. The Mainspring of Human Progress, The Foundation for Economic Education, New York, 1999. Third Revised Edition, p. 256.
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  5. All of the following definitions were either created by Andrew J. Galambos or greatly influenced by him. It is through him that I learned of the importance of absolute definitions and semantic precision.
    I may have modified some definitions and/or not listened properly. Where any definition would be consistent with what Galambos believed, then the error is mine. Where they are correct, the credit is for Galambos.
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  6. This is the definition of Andrew J. Galambos (1924–1997)
    I do not have his specific permission to use it here, but feel that—based on discussions with him when he was alive when I was working for him—that he would have permitted me to use it and any others here in the context of this essay as long as I gave proper credit.
    Further, the contract did say that after publication the non–disclosure clause was no longer in effect.
    As stated here under the "Credits" section, in the essay on Gratitude, and in other writings, I am deeply grateful for the myriad of things I have received from Galambos. Including, but not limited to, the ability to understand something of what he called "Positive History" and to think somewhat rationally on the matters effecting our societal structures.
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    Return to Profit Definition
  7. So named in honor of Chester Carlson {1906–1968}, the creator of the concept of the photocopy and xerography, and the photocopy industry.
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