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There is a popular phrase called "the only rule is there are no rules." But if there are no rules, then how could this even be a rule?

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  • Taken literally, it is a paradox. However, the usual conversational convention is that statements of this form are shortcuts for "the only rule is that there are no rules (except this one)". We routinely omit spelling out exceptions when they are implied by context. As spelled out, the claim is not paradoxical. A famous similar example is "I know that I know nothing" ascribed to Socrates, which is a shortcut for "I know that I know nothing (other than this)". – Conifold May 3 at 20:12
  • @Conifold Good answer. Why don't you make that the answer? – psitae May 4 at 17:20

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