Is there a term for the belief that science provides no knowledge at all even empirical?

I'm arguing with someone who claims that the alternative is just "positivism".

  • Someone who believes in no knowledge being empirically valid (and still believing in invisible things) would be called an idiot. If you believe no knowledge is complete, accurate, or useful you are a nihilist. If you argue that from an epistemologic perspective, most of the time positivists had such problems (Popper was the most remarkable example) so you would be a positivist. I call such people personalized terms like Godelian assholes (umlaut not available in my keyboard) due to the dumb rhetoric they use – Luis Masuelli Mar 18 '16 at 20:55

I have used "skepticism" in the past.

If you hold "knowledge" to the typical standard of "justified true belief," the real question is what qualifies as "justified." Skeptics question the validity of justifications, which in the case of science are in the form of "past performance guarantees future results."

The other approach may be to check to see if you both agree on what "knowledge" means. Many people consider the track record of science to be so stellar that it is valid to define "knowledge" in such a way that science can produce it. It really all depends on your definitions.

  • As the openess of modern sciences for the Agrippan Trilemma was one of the main incentives for Kant and German Idealism to provide a philosophical foundation of apodictic certainty, I would agree with the content. But I also ask for at least some text/quote/URL sourcing it. :) – Philip Klöcking Mar 16 '16 at 10:37
  • @PhilipKlöcking Awesome. Offer an answer, get a few terms to go research =) Amusingly I came across a claim in one blog, "Hence, the Trilemma challenges any claim to knowledge repeatedly so until one of three outcomes are reached:" which itself is a progress ad infinitum argument! =) – Cort Ammon Mar 16 '16 at 14:38

Pseudo-science has been used. Also, if you want to personalize it you can refer to an "intellectual swindler." I have also heard "ideology" used in this sense with a negative connotation. Surely, any good positivist believes there are false sciencees that parade around as the real thing!

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