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Occam's Razor

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Occam's Razor is a principle in logic which states the following: given several competing explanations for the same phenomenon, one should select the explanation with the least amount of fact.

OriginsEdit

Many theories abound on the origins of Occam's Razor — and liberals have been insisting that the origins of Occam's Razor have nothing to do with any "Occam" at all, and was merely attributed to some ancient friar named "William of Ockham". However, using Occam's Razor itself, we now know the true origins of Occam's Razor: it was discovered by a Real American televangelist named Occam while he was shaving his beard with a razor.

CorollariesEdit

Because truthiness is by definition the antithesis of fact, and Occam's Razor says to select the explanation with the least fact, it thus follows directly from the Razor that explanations with high amounts of truthiness should be preferred over explanations with little or no truthiness. Indeed, the Razor can be seen as support for the idea that gut-knowledge is better than head-knowledge.

Examples of the use of Occam's RazorEdit

The following examples illustrate the power of Occam's Razor for determining truth.

One exampleEdit

  • Phenomenon: Many people believe that the media are biased to the Left.
  • Explanation 1: The media are indeed biased to the Left.
  • Explanation 2: Those people who claim this are talking rubbish.

The truthiest explanation, of course, is the first one, so it must be true — and thus it logically follows that the media are biased to the Left.[1]

Another exampleEdit

  • Phenomenon: Many people believe that the media are biased to the Right.
  • Explanation 1: The media are indeed biased to the Right.
  • Explanation 2: Those people who claim this are talking rubbish.

While Explanation 1 is indeed the simplest explanation as far as the head is concerned, there is a little problem: my gut tells me that this explanation does not pass the smell test (and my gut knows a lot about smells!).[2] And besides, everyone calls the media the "Liberal Media", never the "Conservative Media", right? Thus by Occam's Razor, Explanation 1 is clearly incorrect, and Explanation 2 is therefore correct.

ReferencesEdit

  1. engels (2006). Communication on Crooked Timber.
  2. Matthew (2006). Communication on Crooked Timber.

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