FOM: Truth of G

Raatikainen Panu A K Praatikainen at
Thu Nov 9 09:25:48 EST 2000

On 9 Nov 00, at 9:50, Arnon Avron wrote:

> What the pure proof-theoretical argument demonstrates is not G,
> but Con(T)->G. If one wants to go on and prove G (more accurately,
> that G is *True*, because G cannot be proved in T) then I dont see 
> how this can be done without
> a reference to the standard model of T. 

RE: Please see my first posting. There I myself emphasized that 
the argument begins : ASSUME that T is consistent. One the 
derives G. Hence, informally: T is consistent -> G.  
(Formalizing this in T, one gets: Cons(T) -> G.) 
If one then wants to prove G, it is sufficient to assume ... that T is 
consistent, i.e. one cannot derive a contradiction in it.  By Modus 
Ponens, one gets G. See, no models, standard or not ...

By the way, how on earth it is easier to prove in T, or in any theory, 
"G is true" than G ?

One should note that one can Gödelize a highly non-sound theory 
(extending Q) which does not even have a standard model - as long 
as one assumes it is consistent (in the proof theoretical sense). 

My point is that if one seriously assumes the proof-theoretical 
consistency of T, one already implicitly assumes (the truth of?) G. 

>First, the claim that
> G is true already refers to the standard model (it is not true in all
> models of T). 

RE: But on can claim G without any reference to a model. Also, if 
one the has just a weak theory of truth (e.g. just the T-scheme), 
one can also establish T(G) - again, no standard model. Much 
depends on how one understands "Truth".  (Note, by the way, that 
G is a Pi-0-1 sentence, and that the partial truth definition for Pi-0-1 
sentences can be defined in T itself (in fact, by a Pi-0-1 formula).) 

The rest of Avron's posting deals with the tricky question: in what 
sense does Cons(T) "express" the consistency of T. 
I think that dealing adequately this issue would take us far to far ... 
I prefer to stick to G and Gödel's first theorem. 
I am sorry that I used Cons(T) "uncritically" in my posting. Let us 
just use the informal "T is consistent " (does not prove B&-B).

PLEASE NOTE: I did not intend to attack the notion of standard 
model of PA - I personally find it well-defined and acceptable. 
Further, I think that model-theoretic considerations greatly 
illuminate what is really going on in Gödel's theorem. 
    My point was just to emphasize that Gödel's proof does not as 
such assume the notion of the standard model and truth in it  - 
Gödel took great pains to avoid it, in order to convince even those 
who had postivistic, formalistic or finistitic convictions. 
Consequently, my aim was to just emphasize that Gödel's proof 
should have force even for those who find the whole notion of the 
standard model of arithmetic suspectable. There are many who do:
Many claim the notion of actual, completed infinite is nonsensical. 
But they presumably accept the proof theoretical notion of 
consistency of a theory. And that is all that is needed, the rest can 
be carried through in a weak base theory, e.g. in PRA, which is 
often considered to commit one only to the notion of potential 
infinite. The appeal to the standard model of arithmetic is thus not 

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