Does the no miracles argument for scientific realism commit a fallacy? I've read the claim that because science is abductive, and the no miracles argument proceeds via abduction, it is circular.
Is it viciously circular?
Of course it is. What is a miracle other than a complete departure from what is expected. Well, then what is an outlier? The 'no miracles' argument cannot be observed.
It can be proposed as a falsifiable principle, but then it is kind of already falsified. Various things like the unexpected relevance of mathematics to physics come across as miraculous: they are positive results we might wish for, already true, and still inexplicable when they were most relevant. Newton surely considered the power of mathematics a gift from God.
It can be theorized that we would not have reached our Western level of faith in the reliability of results if we did not already have a principle of the miraculous order of the universe.
Someone like Quine would embrace that it's circular. Naturalized epistemologists tend to be coherentists, who tend to get charged with having circular (or criss-crossing-but-never-essentially-grounding) justifiers.