…he opposite. I am arguing that, outside of the myth of objectivity, truth is a meaningless concept. Water does not contain two hydrogen and one oxygen atoms. The appearance of those atoms are created by the beliefs and expectations of observers. If some alien observers believed and expected that the universe was made up of tiny, dancing rubber…
Joshua Scott Hotchkin
That can't be objectively true, or even really just true. By your own reasoning it's only true because you believe that water does not consist of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom and instead consists of whatever we believe something like water consists of. In other words, you're making statements about the nature of reality as though they are objectively true while simultaneously denying the existence of objective reality (as opposed to objectivity, which is experiential). I, like you, agree we can't really be objective (again, read the article I linked to) but I don't deny something like objective reality can exist or claim that we as non-objective beings can't make better or worse judgments about the nature of our world/existence. An objective truth would simply involve something that looked the same from the perspective of all subjective observers - that they called it "dancing rubber snakes" or "hydrogen and oxygen" really doesn't matter if what they see functions the same in either case. And no, simply believing water really consists of two dancing rubber snakes as you and I would think of them does not cause you to look at an image produced by an electron microscope and actually see what you and I would call snakes. Both science in particular and history in general is replete with examples of people who believed one thing only to see for themselves and come away convinced that they were wrong. Indeed, I dare say it's a universal experience. I am not ashamed to admit I've had it.
My position is simply that objectivity vs. subjectivity is a false dichotomy to begin with, at least from our own inevitably experiential (i.e. subjective) point of view. While I generally agree with the definition of "objective truth" you provide, I don't agree with how others commonly apply this definition. Your own argument (essentially, that truth is simply what we think it is) leaves your position no more defensible than any other. Either it is "true" that truth is just what we think it is or it isn't. The problem is, according to that take on truth if it is just what we think it is and I think otherwise then it isn't, at least for me. You're leaving us with a philosophy/worldview that not only provides no clarity but can't possibly provide clarity. Indeed, it can only cause confusion and discord. It leaves us with "it's all just a matter of opinion" or something of that sort. If there's no process or processes that we can follow that demonstrably lead to better outcomes or greater knowledge, then that must be as true for your take on reality as it is mine. Yet here you are arguing that I'm wrong and you're right, which is really all the evidence I need that you're not really convinced by your own argument.