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What do you call the philosophical position of a person who radically denies any knowledge saying the contrary might be true.

Example: Aspirin cures headaches. Response: There are people on which Aspirin doesn't work.

A Radical Example: If you drop a ball, it falls down. Response: What if in the instant of dropping the ball the earth's gravity changes!

It is a position that accepts everything is possible and It looks to me like radical skepticism in some sense but I guess it's different in a way that the person might believe in true knowledge but just that the given knowledge could be brittle because we might not have complete knowledge of something yet and there exists a possibility that a contrary example might exist. It might also be documented as a logical fallacy somewhere I wasn't able to find a name for this, so any pointers on this would be helpful.

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  • I think that's just scepticism.
    – CriglCragl
    Aug 27 at 14:18
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    The issue you describe is common. It is NOT just skepticism. The issue is you are too broad with your statements. You are generalizing too much & typically then the same person goes to specific circumstances where it is not 100 percent true. The other person is showing you are wrong by counterexample. Your job is to be specific as possible right from the start instead of adding details in the middle of a conversation in real time. The other person seems to nit pick at you after you do that. Be clear & more detailed more with your statements & you will notice this counter is reduced.
    – Logikal
    Aug 27 at 15:54
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    It sounds like the fallacy of nitpicking. I just made that up, but basically, you seem to be dealing someone who accepts that we can have reliable judgments about the nature of the world (so as you note, he is not a radical skeptic), but refuses to acknowledge as true any proposition which has a probability less than 1. Nancy Cartwright dealt with this issue and how it affects the laws of nature in How the Laws of Physics Lie. Aug 27 at 20:07
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    It sounds like fallibilism:" philosophical claim that no belief can have justification which guarantees the truth of the belief, or that no beliefs are certain... Unlike many forms of skepticism, fallibilism does not imply that we have no knowledge; fallibilists typically deny that knowledge requires absolute certainty. Rather, fallibilism is an admission that, because empirical knowledge can be revised by further observation, any of the things we take as empirical knowledge might turn out to be false." It is not considered fallacious.
    – Conifold
    Aug 27 at 23:26
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Descartes was the first to take this position, so it is usually called Cartesian Skepticism or Cartesian Doubt:

His basic strategy was to consider false any belief that falls prey to even the slightest doubt. This clearing of his previously held beliefs then puts him at an epistemological ground-zero. From here Descartes sets out to find something that lies beyond all doubt. He eventually discovers that “I exist” is impossible to doubt and is, therefore, absolutely certain.

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