12 May 2008

When Obama wins...

When Obama wins is Jason Kottke's collection of people's postings to Twitter that begin "when Obama wins".

It appears to have started with When Obama wins... unicorns will crap ice cream and pastries.

Of course this is vacuously true! Or at least it would be given the nonexistence of unicorns, which I think we can take as an axiom. To disprove it one would need to produce a counterexample, namely a unicorn that does not crap ice cream and pastries. But we can't do that, since there are no unicorns!

Now, if it said "When Obama wins... everybody will have their own unicorn that craps ice cream and pastries", that would be falsifiable. (And almost certainly false. Let's face it, it's hard to make sure everybody gets a unicorn.)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i'm not sure i agree with you
a hundred percent on your police work.

it appears to me that the most natural
reading of "u's will c ic"
would be more-or-less synonymous
with "more than one existing u
will c ic".

what's actually worse, you've used
the dreaded "unspecified 'this' ":
"this is vacuously true"
could easily have referred to
"when o wins, u's will c ic"
which is vacuous only if
the condition "o wins" is known
to be impossible.

provocative as usual; keep 'em coming.