The War Lover, by Craig


Fact-value distinction is wrong. There will be no sense to learn philosophy and consider justice, admitting the distinction between facts and values.

Analysis of the fact-value distinction:

  1. Fact-value distinction
    1. Facts can be determined by empirical observation and rational analysis. Facts are based on perception of qualities and quantities and relations. Facts are objective, which are raised from inter-subjective agreement. The facts are what they are.

B. Values are things one tacitly appeals to in making judgments as to what is right or wrong, good or bad, beautiful or ugly, noble or base.

Values are conceived by 1) reflections of one’s passions or dispositions, 2) revelations of God’s Will, 3) inexplicable intuition, 4) expressions of one’s own will or wishes, 5) creations of personal “commitments” and “leaps of faith”. They are not rational analysis of objective reality. Value judgments are reflections of the judging subject.

  1. Contrary to the fact-value distinction, values cannot be separated from facts
    1. Ontology separates the facts from values. However, it is impossible to derive one’s values from the facts as one sees them, because one cannot deduce a conclusion that was not already implicit in one’s premises.
    2. The fact-value distinction treats values non-cognitive, subjective and irrational. It represents a rejection of reason for disclosing how one ought to live.
    3. Committing the fact-value distinction makes everything pointless, since all thoughts and philosophies are different from facts. The “reasoning” behind the fact-value distinction dissolves into incoherence.
  2. Values are reflections of facts

As far as health, all life forms seek a good health—fitness, and then propagation. A good health is real; it is an undoubted fact. However, it is concerning more about its production, maintenance and restoration rather than what it is. A good health consists of not only a sound body, but a sound mind as well. People care more about their own comprehensive good health, (which reflects how their lives are and how they live in a healthy way, rather than the fact of a good health. Similarly, there are no standards of judging beauty. It all depends on how we look). While it may be difficult to say exactly what good health or beauty is with precision, we are able to determine whether we are headed toward it or away from it. it is not an arbitrary or relative standard.

  1. Values/facts are the guidance of human life

People often treat their good as objective. They are looking for the best for themselves. People are apt to be guided by an opinion about what is the best. The opinion is apt to be closer to real things. The values represent summary judgments, which help people to judge what is right and wrong, good and bad, noble and base. The reasoning is inductive and synoptic. The reasoning is the principals and standards that guide people to make choices. It is synthesis from practices rather than analysis.


Fact-value distinction makes philosophy pointless. Values are originated from people’s observations and thoughts. They are reflections of facts. Values get closer to the truth with people’s continuous thinking. They provide human the life of reason. There is nothing called values. Only facts and truth exist. There is no fact-value distinction.

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