# „Equality gives rise to challenging questions which are not altogether easy to answer… a = a and a = b are obviously statements of differing cognitive value; a = a holds a priori and, according to Kant, is to be labeled analytic, while statements of the form a = b often contain very valuable extensions of our knowledge and cannot always be established a priori. The discovery that the rising sun is not new every morning, but always the same, was one of the most fertile astronomical discoveries. Even to-day the identification of a small planet or a comet is not always a matter of course. Now if we were to regard equality as a relation between that which the names 'a' and 'b' designate, it would seem that a = b could not differ from a = a (i. e. provided a = b is true). A relation would thereby be expressed of a thing to itself, and indeed one in which each thing stands to itself but to no other thing.“

—  Gottlob Frege, Sense and reference, Über Sinn und Bedeutung, 1892, As cited in: M. Fitting, Richard L. Mendelsoh (1999), First-Order Modal Logic, p. 142. They called this Frege's Puzzle.
##### Gottlob Frege5
deutscher Mathematiker, Logiker und Philosoph 1848 - 1925
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### „Equality gives rise to challenging questions which are not altogether easy to answer… a = a and a = b are obviously statements of differing cognitive value; a = a holds a priori and, according to Kant, is to be labeled analytic, while statements of the form a = b often contain very valuable extensions of our knowledge and cannot always be established a priori.“

—  Gottlob Frege mathematician, logician, philosopher 1848 - 1925
Über Sinn und Bedeutung, 1892, The discovery that the rising sun is not new every morning, but always the same, was one of the most fertile astronomical discoveries. Even to-day the identification of a small planet or a comet is not always a matter of course. Now if we were to regard equality as a relation between that which the names 'a' and 'b' designate, it would seem that a = b could not differ from a = a (i.e. provided a = b is true). A relation would thereby be expressed of a thing to itself, and indeed one in which each thing stands to itself but to no other thing. As cited in: M. Fitting, Richard L. Mendelsoh (1999), First-Order Modal Logic, p. 142. They called this Frege's Puzzle.

### „The traditional approach has tended to obscure the nature of the choice that has to be made. The question is commonly thought of as one in which A inflicts harm on B and what has to be decided is: how should we restrain A? But this is wrong. We are dealing with a problem of a reciprocal nature. To avoid the harm to B would inflict harm on A. The real question that has to be decided is: should A be allowed to harm B or should B be allowed to harm A?“

—  Ronald H. Coase British economist and author 1910 - 2013
1960s-1980s, "The Problem of Social Cost" (1960)

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### „The sun gives you ulcers, the wind gives you T. B.Once you were beautiful.“

—  Sylvia Plath, Ariel: The Restored Edition

### „Lastly, what is history for? This is perhaps a harder question than the others; a man who answers it will have to reflect rather more widely than a man who answers the three we have answered already. He must reflect not only on historical thinking but on other things as well, because to say that something is `for' something implies a distinction between A and B, where A is good for something and B is that for which something is good. But I will suggest an answer, and express the opinion that no historian would reject it, although the further questions to which it gives rise are numerous and difficult.My answer is that history is `for' human self-knowledge. It is generally thought to be of importance to man that he should know himself: where knowing himself means knowing not his merely personal peculiarities, the things that distinguish him from other men, but his nature as man. Knowing yourself means knowing, first, what it is to be a man; secondly, knowing what it is to be the kind of man you are; and thirdly, knowing what it is to be the man you are and nobody else is. Knowing yourself means knowing what you can do; and since nobody knows what he can do until he tries, the only clue to what man can do is what man has done. The value of history, then, is that it teaches us what man has done and thus what man is.“

—  R. G. Collingwood British historian and philosopher 1889 - 1943
The Idea of History (1946), p. 10

### „A: "Your objection to the self-evident has no validity. There is no such thing as disagreement. People agree about everything." B: "That’s absurd; people disagree constantly, and about all kinds of things." A: "How can they? There’s nothing to disagree about; no subject matter. After all, nothing exists." B: "Nonsense. All kinds of things exist, you know that as well as I do." A: "That’s one. You must accept the existence axiom, even to utter the term “disagreement.” But to continue, I still maintain that disagreement is unreal. How can people disagree when they are unconscious beings who are unable to hold any ideas at all?" B: "Of course people hold ideas. They are conscious beings. You know that." A: "There’s another axiom, but even so, why is disagreement about axioms a problem? Why should it suggest that one or more of the parties is mistaken? Perhaps all of the people who disagree about the very same point are equally, objectively right." B: "That’s impossible. If two ideas contradict each other, they can’t both be right. Contradictions can’t exist in reality. After all, A is A." Existence, consciousness, identity are presupposed by every statement and by every concept, including that of "disagreement." … In the act of voicing his objection, therefore, the objector has conceded the case. In any act of challenging or denying the three axioms, a man reaffirms them, no matter what the particular content of this challenge. The axioms are invulnerable. The opponents of these axioms pose as defenders of truth, but it is only a pose. Their attack on the self-evident amounts to the charge. "Your belief in an idea doesn't necessarily make it true; you must prove it, because facts are what they are independent of your beliefs." Every element of this charge relies on the very axioms that these people are questioning and supposedly setting aside.“

—  Leonard Peikoff Canadian-American philosopher 1933
1990s, Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand (1991) ; Dialogue used to show that existence, conciousness, identity, and non-contradiction are axioms, using A as a defender of the axioms, and B as an opponent of the axioms,

### „In regard, then, to the sacred tradition of humanity, we learn that it consists, not in propositions or statements which are to be accepted and believed on the authority of the tradition, but in questions rightly asked, in conceptions which enable us to ask further questions, and in methods of answering questions. The value of all these things depends on their being tested day by day.“

—  William Kingdon Clifford English mathematician and philosopher 1845 - 1879
The Ethics of Belief (1877), The Weight Of Authority, Context: In regard, then, to the sacred tradition of humanity, we learn that it consists, not in propositions or statements which are to be accepted and believed on the authority of the tradition, but in questions rightly asked, in conceptions which enable us to ask further questions, and in methods of answering questions. The value of all these things depends on their being tested day by day. The very sacredness of the precious deposit imposes upon us the duty and the responsibility of testing it, of purifying and enlarging it to the utmost of our power. He who makes use of its results to stifle his own doubts, or to hamper the inquiry of others, is guilty of a sacrilege which centuries shall never be able to blot out. When the labours and questionings of honest and brave men shall have built up the fabric of known truth to a glory which we in this generation can neither hope for nor imagine, in that pure and holy temple he shall have no part nor lot, but his name and his works shall be cast out into the darkness of oblivion for ever.

### „Matter… could be measured as a quantity and… its characteristic expression as a substance was the Law of Conservation of Matter… This, which has hitherto represented our knowledge of space and matter, and which was in many quarters claimed by philosophers as a priori knowledge, absolutely general and necessary, stands to-day a tottering structure.“

—  Hermann Weyl German mathematician 1885 - 1955
Space—Time—Matter (1952), Context: The Greeks made Space the subject-matter of a science of supreme simplicity and certainty. and certainty Out of it grew, in the mind of classical antiquity, the idea of pure science. Geometry became one of the most powerful expressions of that sovereignty of the intellect that inspired the thought of those times. At a later epoch, when the intellectual despotism of the Church... had crumbled, and a wave of scepticism threatened to sweep away all that had seemed most fixed, those who believed in Truth clung to Geometry as to a rock, and it was the highest ideal of every scientist to carry on his science "more geometrico". Matter... could be measured as a quantity and... its characteristic expression as a substance was the Law of Conservation of Matter... This, which has hitherto represented our knowledge of space and matter, and which was in many quarters claimed by philosophers as a priori knowledge, absolutely general and necessary, stands to-day a tottering structure. Introduction<!-- p. 1-2 -->

### „We can each sit and wait to die, from the very day of our births. Those of us who do not do so, choose to ask--and to answer--the two questions that define every conscious creature: What do I want? and What will I do to get it? Which are, finally, only one question: What is my will? Caine teaches us that the answer is always found within our own experience; our lives provide the structure of the question, and a properly phrased question contains its own answer.“

—  Matthew Stover, Blade of Tyshalle
Blade of Tyshalle (2001), (XIV.3) Del Rey, p. 472

### „And besides; the problem of land, at its worst, is a bye one; distribute the earth as you will, the principal question remains inexorable, —Who is to dig it? Which of us, in brief word, is to do the hard and dirty work for the rest, and for what pay?</b“

—  John Ruskin English writer and art critic 1819 - 1900
Sesame and Lilies, lecture II: Lilies http://www.fullbooks.com/Sesame-and-Lilies3.html

### „It is not true that on an exchange of commodities we give value for value. On the contrary, each of the two contracting parties in every case, gives a less for a greater value. … If we really exchanged equal values, neither party could make a profit. And yet, they both gain, or ought to gain. Why? The value of a thing consists solely in its relation to our wants. What is more to the one is less to the other, and vice versa. … It is not to be assumed that we offer for sale articles required for our own consumption. … We wish to part with a useless thing, in order to get one that we need; we want to give less for more. … It was natural to think that, in an exchange, value was given for value, whenever each of the articles exchanged was of equal value with the same quantity of gold. … But there is another point to be considered in our calculation. The question is, whether we both exchange something superfluous for something necessary.“

—  Étienne Bonnot de Condillac French academic 1715 - 1780
Le Commerce et le Gouvernement (1776), as quoted in Marx's Capital, Vol. I, Ch. 5.

### „One of the questions on which clarity of thinking is now most necessary is that of the relation between the methods of science and of Marxist philosophy. Although much has already been written on the subject, yet there is still an enormous amount of confusion and contradictory statement.“

—  John Desmond Bernal British scientist 1901 - 1971
J.D. Bernal (1937) "Dialectical Materialism and Modern Science" in: Science and Society, Volume II, No. 1, Winter 1937; Online ( here http://www.marxists.org/archive/bernal/works/1930s/dsams.htm) on Marxists Internet Archive (2002).

### „The discovery of new knowledge for ourselves, then, means the assimilation of public information into our unique context of thought. ie can establish relations between ideas and concepts which are not available to anyone else, because no-one else has precisely the same system of information available.“

—  Douglas John Foskett 1918 - 2004
Librarians and Information Systems (1995)

### „The real discovery is the one which enables me to stop doing philosophy when I want to. The one that gives philosophy peace, so that it is no longer tormented by questions which bring itself into question.“

—  Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosophical Investigations
Philosophical Investigations (1953), § 133

### „The question whether we have not some knowledge independent of any and all experience — whether there must not, unavoidably, be some knowledge a priori, some knowledge which we come at simply by virtue of our nature — is really the paramount question, around which the whole conflict in philosophy concentrates, and on the decision of which the settlement of every other question hangs. To cast the career of a philosophy upon a negative answer to it, as if this were a matter of course, — which the English school from Hobbes onward has continually done, — is to proceed not only upon a petitio, but upon a delusion regarding the security of the road.“

—  George Holmes Howison American philosopher 1834 - 1916
The Limits of Evolution, and Other Essays, Illustrating the Metaphysical Theory of Personal Ideaalism (1905), The Limits of Evolution, p.17

### „The second period, which commenced in the middle of the seventeenth century, and lasted for about a century, was characterized by the application of the powerful analytical methods provided by the new Analysis to the determination of analytical expressions for the number &pi; in the form of convergent series, products, and continued fractions. The older geometrical forms of investigation gave way to analytical processes in which the functional relationship as applied to the trigonometrical functions became prominent. The new methods of systematic representation gave rise to a race of calculators of &pi;, who, in their consciousness of the vastly enhance means of calculation placed in their hands by the new Analysis, proceeded to apply the formulae to obtain numerical approximations to &pi; to ever larger numbers of places of decimals, although their efforts were quite useless for the purpose of throwing light upon the true nature of that number. At the end of this period no knowledge had been obtained as regards the number &pi; of the kind likely to throw light upon the possibility or impossibility of the old historical problem of the ideal construction; it was not even definitely known whether the number is rational or irrational. However, one great discovery, destined to furnish the clue to the solution of the problem, was made at this time; that of the relation between the two numbers &pi; and e, as a particular case of those exponential expressions for the trigonometrical functions which form one of the most fundamentally important of the analytical weapons forged during this period.“

—  E. W. Hobson British mathematician 1856 - 1933
Squaring the Circle (1913), pp. 11-12

### „From the statements we have made, a stupendous perspective emerges, a vista towards a hitherto unsuspected unity of the conception of the world. Similar general principles have evolved everywhere, whether we are dealing with inanimate things, organisms, mental or social processes. What is the origin of these correspondences?We answer this question by the claim for a new realm of science, which we call General System Theory. It is a logico-mathematical field, the subject matter of which is the formulation and derivation of those principles which hold for systems in general. A "system" can be defined as a complex of elements standing in interaction. There are general principles holding for systems, irrespective of the nature of the component elements and of the relations or forces between them.“

—  Ludwig von Bertalanffy austrian biologist and philosopher 1901 - 1972
1950s, Problems of Life (1952, 1960), p. 199 as cited in: D.C. (1969) "Systems Theory — A Discredited Philosophy". in: Abacus V. p. 8