We’ve got a new video up over at Philosophy15 on what Talisse and I have been calling ‘The Simple Truth Thesis.’ The thesis is that most problems that look complex are actually very simple and that all the wrangling over the issues is because the opposition is either benighted, stupid, or evil. So there are simple truths about which only those of objectionable character would dispute, and so engaging in the disputes gives the bad character of the opposition too much credit and also threatens to obscure what was so easily seen before. And so a corollary of the view is that there is no reasonable opposition.
Given that Talisse and I endorse Mill’s Maxim, the view that in order to properly understand and have justifying reasons for holding one’s own views, one must know the views of one’s opposition, we think the no reasonable opposition view is incorrect. The Simple Truth Thesis is, in fact, an illusion created by not knowing about one’s opposition.
There is a puzzle to the Mill’s Maxim line here, since we’d endorsed limits to the Maxim, which it seems makes the Mill view consistent with a modified No Reasonable Opposition view. The modified view now is a picture of unreasonable opposition. But now the requirement for such an assessment requires reasons independent of the disagreement.