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An Answer to Skepticism about Induction and the External WorldThe problems of induction and the external world do indeed share a common structure Both narrowly define what we directly or immediately know They then note that we usually assume that we know much more than that even though what we know directly does not logically imply most of what we assume we know Therefore much of our knowledge is unfoundedThis paper will undertake three tasks First it will outline the general structure of this sort of skeptical argument Second it will show how the problems of induction and the external world fit exactly into this common structure Third it will point out the most questionable step in the two arguments -- which turns out to be the same in both cases2 The Common Structure of the ProblemsThe problems of induction and the external world as we shall see later both fit elegantly into the following more general skeptical argument1 X is known directly2 Y is not known directly3 X does not logically imply Y even though we usually assume that it does4 Nothing else directly known implies Y eitherTherefore we dont know YHow does this argument work Basically it creates a split in Prof Strouds words between what we know directly and what we dont know directly Hence in order to know the latter we would have to logically derive it from the former Sometimes this isnt a problem even though I dont know that the Pythagorean theorem is true directly I do know the properties of squares and triangles directly and the Pythagorean theorem can be logically derived solely from knowledge of squares and triangles But suppose that I dont directly know that something is true and what I know directly does not logically imply it either I would have to conclude that what I believed was knowledge was just an unwarranted assumption3 The Structure AppliedI contend that this is exactly what happens with
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