Single Idea 6788

[catalogued under 14. Science / D. Explanation / 3. Best Explanation / c. Against best explanation]

Full Idea

It is objected to 'best explanation' that this may well not be the best of all possible worlds - so why think that the best explanation is true? Maybe bad (complicated, unsystematic and weak) explanations are true.

Gist of Idea

Maybe bad explanations are the true ones, in this messy world


Alexander Bird (Philosophy of Science [1998], Ch.4)

Book Reference

Bird,Alexander: 'Philosophy of Science' [UCL Press 2000], p.157

A Reaction

The only rebuttal of this objection to best explanation seems to be a priori. It would just seem an odd situation if very simple explanations fitted the facts and yet were false, like the points on a graph being a straight line by pure coincidence.