Even though I'm refraining from posting, I still read some of the physics discussions on this forum. I've learned a great deal of physics here, thanks to Dick and Alex. But besides learning physics per se I'm also interested in understanding what physics is all about, and I have never seen anyone deal with the issue seriously. Physicists think the question is irrelevant; philosophers... well, they seem to have a bad reputation which as far as I can tell is perfectly justified. But that's all beside the point.
I don't know what Dick is up to. I think I understand his statement of the basic problem better than anyone else here, but that's pretty much as far as I get it. However, what I find fascinating about this grumpy old man is that I never caught him making logical mistakes. Not a single one, and I read everything he wrote that I was able to find. Most people seem to think the ability to think clearly is not that important, I think it's fundamental for anyone who's in pursuit of truth.
You, Harv, are also a very interesting thinker, but for totally different reasons. I think you have an amazing ability to talk about things you don't understand, to me you sound like a phenomenal human encyclopedia. Your memory is amazing but, and I mean this with all respect, I think you need to put some order into your accumulated knowledge. I don't know what Dick sees in you, but I definitely think you are the best person on this forum that could help put some of Dick's ideas in a different perspective. I think you are very close to understanding him but for some reason you keep bouncing off a wall without realizing it. So I decided to intervene to see if I can help, and I only ask you to keep in mind that in no way I represent Dick or claim to understand everything he says.
I'd like to comment on a few things you wrote in your last post which to me are blatantly wrong, and which I think you would eventually agree with me if you think straight.
>> Okay, but why are certain laws derivable from your model (the 'prima facie' physics) while others, the more fundamental, are not (particle guage theories)? > But why describe it in numbers when mathematics and words do just fine? > Can one derive an equation to some important prima facie physics without it having anything to do with real fundamental physics? Well, it is difficult, but I think it is possible.