[FOM] The Lucas-Penrose Thesis

Mark Steiner marksa at vms.huji.ac.il
Thu Sep 28 16:09:43 EDT 2006

I am a little disturbed that a seminal paper on the Lucas argument, "God,
the Devil, and Goedel," by my teacher, Paul Benacerraf, has not been cited
in the discussion of FOM.  Aside from making all the points mentioned by
participants on FOM, it shows that there is another hidden assumption in the
argument, namely that if I am a machine, then I can know which one.  I have
heard this argument coming from others, but rarely if at all does Benacerraf
get the credit for this masterful paper.  The paper appeared in 1967 in the
Monist 51:9-32, and therefore precedes almost all the others.

I would also like to express my opinion that The Emperor's New Mind has
other things in it and some of them are very illuminating, such as his
remarks on the nature of mathematics.

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