Let me ask you: Have you ever played a game of poker? Taken a bet? Listened to a weather forecast? Should you write-off the weather man as 'whim worshipper' because he can't forecast the weather with certainty? Should you despair of formulating any rational strategy when playing poker and simply do things on a whim? Would it be the case that you could say nothing at all about which horse will win the next race? The answer is: No, of course not. In all cases, probabilistic reasoning never implied radical skepticism or mysticism.
Concerning the scenarios in your questions, I answer with: certainly so.
I answer with a certainly so as I cannot (honestly) doubt that I have not played poker, placed a bet, or listened to a weather report. In order to doubt that I have, I would have to be convinced via a doubt-inspiring argument, or be presented with doubt-inspiring evidence.
Merely stating that I might have been hallucinating is not a doubt-inspiring argument, nor is it doubt-inspiring evidence.
I am certain when I cannot doubt.
I would like to clarify my use of honest doubt: personally, I take my use of honestly doubt as being redundant, as I cannot lie to myself concerning what it is that I am doubtful of. If I hold the ability to doubt through a method of rational introspection, then I cannot be dishonest with myself, and, while in doubt, be certain concerning the doubted subject.
This is not to say that I cannot be incorrect, but, at that time, I either doubt or I do not.
If you toss a coin, cover it and ask me: 'Heads or Tails?’, I will say: 'I am 50% sure that the result is Heads'. This doesn't mean that I think that the reality of the result is half unknowable. The probability simply reflects my lack of knowledge. When my state of knowledge changes, I can then adjust the probability to reflect my new understanding of reality.
You are not 50% sure of the outcome—you are certain that the outcome will be one or the other. It is your odds of being correct with your guess as to what the outcome will be, which are 50/50.
Look at it this way: were you not certain of the potential outcomes, and the concepts involved with tossing a coin, then from where are you assigning odds from, and to what? Your certainty in the act of coin tossing--and all that goes along with it--is implied when statistical analysis is applied.
'I am 98% certain that certainty is impossible'
For you to, not only state certitude concerning what is impossible, but also assign how percetage-ly sure you are as well, you would need to demonstrate, with certitude, the conditions by which would render it impossible.
Even tautological statements such as 'All Bachelors are unmarried' cannot be regarded as certain, because terms have to be defined for such statements to be meaningful, and as soon as you attempt to define all the words you are drawing on empirical data which has uncertainties
As to married bachelors: You may be uncertain as to whether a person is a bachelor or not, but not that there can be married bachelors, as marriage and bachelor are concepts that humans invented concerning the contractual state of a male in relation to some other female/male.
Without putting too much thought into this, human inventions, such as marriage and bachelor, are not empirical, as the moon is perceived, but are constructed/invented to indicate a state of relationship with another person. You seem to be confusing the two.
Interesting. I did not take what I said as permanency equating to existents. I’m not so sure that any thing is permanent? Save a permanent process, perhaps.
Ideas are fleeting, in that they do come and go, but are “retrievable;” were they not existing, though, then how is it that I am retrieving them, as I cannot retrieve that which does not exist?
I take it that you take it that ideas exist in a physical, although mental context?
I actually don’t know what objectivism’s position is on ideas, and whether or not ideas are concepts. I’ll have to look into that myself.
An idea is real in the sense that any other fleeting process is real, like "driving" or "smoking". "Driving" encapsulates the process by which my persons, an extent, manipulates my car, also another extent. So the idea of an idea is "a fleeting process where the nervous system interacts in a certain way." While it may be self-referencing to state it quite like that, it is not, more importantly, self-negating.
I’m not sure what is being said here? Are you saying that the act of driving is an idea? I would not have taken it as an idea, but the acting out of an idea, and an idea being an intellectual action.
It's a terrible thing to think about, isn't it? Terrible in that just how to come to terms with how ideas (physically) exist in our neural networks (brains), as we are having them, and then how they are stored for retreival at some later date.
Is it nutty to take it that, since our neural networks are finite in extent, that ideas are also extent within our neural networks?
I give up.
Anyway, it’s late, and I’ll have to give it some more thought another time.