“Iz Teh Kriteek uv Teh Pure Reasonz – by LOLkant,” by Jeffrey Gross

Jun 15th, 2011 | By | Category: Fake Nonfiction, Prose

U iz teh subject. So u iz see. U iz hear. And teh other sensez. U iz kno. But hau u iz kno u kno?  U iz not kno u kno!  Until nau. Cuz I iz tell u hau u kno. I iz teh big flossafer Immanual Kant, and I can haz knowledge. Also: German. I iz never hav teh hawt secks like Descartes (cuz he iz teh French), but I iz hav somethin better: teh theory uv hau thru teh categoriez uv teh understandin, and without recourse 2 teh noumenal, teh mind can apprehend sensory manifoldz, thus makin possible teh scientific knowledge. Meanz teh objectivity, teh physicz. But not teh metaphysicz – noez, u iz not hav!  Y?  Teh dialecticz, LDO![1]  U iz get?  OK, I iz make Kriteek 4 splain 2 u. U iz listen nau.

Ok so, Hume. Him iz very big big d00d. I mean: totes fat[2]. So, I iz havin teh nap, and he come and say, U must wakez from teh naïve realism uv blievin that teh knowledgez can b generated thru reason alone. I iz say, d00d, y u iz wake me up?  We haz teh scienze, iz all gud, so I iz nap. But he iz say, D00d, where’z mah causality?

I iz say, wut?  Iz no problem with teh causality: I iz eat teh bratwurst, nom nom nom, I iz hav teh gas, so iz clear teh second iz cuz uv teh first. Hume iz say, you iz only perceive teh gas come after teh bratwurst, not because uv – u iz not perceive teh causality, only teh temporal succession. So I iz wake up, hit head on lampz – BANG!  After iz become very famous st8ment: “Hume iz woke me from teh dogmatic slumberz.” I iz hav teh crisis in faith in teh rationalismz – so u iz not hav 2. 

Cuz iz big problem: hau can we haz teh knowledge, if we only c seriez uv perceptionz? We iz not c teh causality, so hau we iz kno it? And if we iz not kno it, hau we iz hav teh scientific lawz – or teh science at all? 

I iz start with teh language: wut kind uv st8mentz iz? First iz st8ment like “All bachelorz iz unmarried.” But iz not say anything about bachelors we not already kno – iz not mean Schkwat.[3] Iz teh analysis uv teh subject givez us teh predicate – so iz kalled “analytic.”  Then iz st8ment like “Water, wen heated, iz boil.”  Idea uv boil iz not contained in teh idea uv water, so iz “synthetic.” Also: a posteriori, not a priori[4]. Meanz, we learn after teh speeriens when we iz boil water. But iz like Hume sed: we iz not observe teh causality; we c water iz boil contingently, but not necessarily.  :(

I iz rack brainz for 11 yearz, then 1 day iz come 2 me: we iz need statementz that r syntehtic AND a priori! Synthetic, so iz not mere analysis uv subject. But a priori – prior 2 teh speeriens and in4mz teh speeriens – so haz content beyond mere sense dataz.[5] I iz make famous st8ment: “All knowledge iz begin in teh speeriens, but iz not all arise out uv teh speeriens.”

Wut meanz? Meanz first our mind iz rel8 2 objectz thru perceptionz (I iz call “intuishun” to confuse teh studetnz). But manifold uv intuishunz arrivez in formz uv space and time. These formz r not conceptz: we iz not derive space as a generalization from thingz – on contrary, we iz only imagine those thingz in some unitary space. So iz teh a priori AND teh synthetic. U iz dig? So already we iz hav teh knowledgez, because teh geometry iz come from nature uv teh space, LDFO.[6]  And teh objectz perceived r thought thru teh categoriez uv teh understandin – like unity, reality, negation, substance, and causality. Iz not extract from teh speeriens, no – prior 2 teh speeriens teh categoriez iz shape it cordin 2 universal lawz. Indeed, teh categoriez r teh universal lawz. I iz do little flossafer victory dance round mah crib wen I iz cre8 mah theory: meanz we iz speeriens reality az rational thru teh organizin facultiez uv teh mindz.[7]  

So iz mah Copernican revolution 4 teh objectivity: I show hau we can haz knowledge.  But iz not enuff 4 u, noez, u iz want moar: U iz want Reason 2 range beyond teh sensory. U iz think, “if it can b thought, it can b known.” I give u zample: Mebbe u iz blieve in immortal Soul.  Or mebbe u iz blieve in Ceiling Cat. U iz go 2 church, u iz pray 2 Him, u say “O Ceiling Cat, U iz not watch me masturb8, iz U?  Cuz iz not cool.” But hau you haz direct knowing uv Ceiling Cat? U no haz! Because no sense dataz r given 2 teh understandin via teh sensory manifold. So iz nutthin 4 teh understandin 2 work on, sorryz. 

So, mebbe nau u haz teh sadz. U think, I iz want teh objective knowledge, otherwise, y go on?  And u think, that mean Herr Kant iz take away mah knowledge—I iz h8 him! But noez: I iz jes stablish teh objectivity, and I iz reskyoo it from teh skepticism uv teh Empiricistz, while at same time discipline Rationalistz’ attempt 2 dogmatically allow reason 2 range into teh supersensible. So teh understandin must hav teh sensez 2 work on. I iz make nother famous st8ment: “Conceptz without perceptz r empty; perceptz without conceptz r blind.”   

So, d00d, if u iz in Koenigberg sometime, come up 2 mah crib and I iz giv u teh Bierz und Bratwurstz. Nom nom nom. Srsly, d00d—4 realz. 


Jeffrey Gross is a writer, entrepreneur and musician in Brooklyn, where his refusal to wear ironic spectacles is itself ironic. His college philosophy class was, sadly, at 8 AM. He likes a nice pinot noir and almost always obeys the categorical imperative. His domain, LOLkant.com, may or may not be something in the future.


[1] Like, Duh, Obviously

[2] Some sources have “phat.”

[3] One might expect “Schquat” here, but the International LOLcat Translation Committee, of Snivley-cum-Petton, has elected to translate Kant’s famous Kritik into HochLOLcat, rather than the commoner PlattLOLcat.

[4] “Posteriori” iz not mean teh buttockz!

[5] cf. www.icanhascheezburger.com, et seq, q.v., op. cit, loc. cit., quid pro quo, with 2 u get Schnitzel.

[6] Like, Duh, Fucking Obviously

[7] Flossaferz uv teh peripatetic skool iz use formulation: “This iz my theory, which iz mine, and which iz my theory”—but teh Kantster iz informal d00d. Cf. “Theory uv teh Brontosaurus,” Miss Ann Elk, seriatim.

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