It isn't stated as an a priori axiom. It's stated as a proposition to be argued for. Which is exactly what I've been doing for why people tend to care about the truth, and why our standard biases can make it look to someone else that we don't really care about the truth. Someone with a better argument can explain to me why I'm wrong. I'm all ears.
It's a generalization, that generally speaking people do care if their beliefs are true, especially beliefs that are deeply held or a focus of lots of their attention (whether it's a religion or a much loved hobby or whatever).
There will always be exceptions, but I think they will be relatively rare.
Even chronic liars likely care about the truth of their beliefs, which is my point.
I argue that in most cases: yes they do. People really, really can believe crazy and illogical things, sincerely. Because we are not Perfectly Rational Beings - we make mistakes, and often biases hide from us those mistakes. Even when the mistakes are pointed out, there are all sorts of reasons why we may not recognize the other person is correct. That biases tend to operate in ways that can be invisible to us is something presumably well-known by folks in a "science-engineering" driven forum. And as I've said, my view also comes from decades of looking in to and interacting with people who hold what we would consider to be "crackpot" and "illogical" beliefs. I have found they are quite sincere.
For instance I have some very good friends (used to be neighbors) who are deeply in to ghosts and spirits. They are convinced we are surrounded by ghosts and convinced they see ghosts all the time. They reach these conclusions, on my account, through a faulty method of reasoning. But they are very sincere in their beliefs and act in ways incompatible with "people who don't really care their beliefs are true."
Why are you trying to convince me (or anyone) that almost everyone sincerely cares that whatever they may believe is "true"? Even if I agreed with the assertion, why on earth should I care? Some people are simply misguided, delusional, deceitful, or incapable of rational thought. It doesn't matter whether they
consider their own beliefs true if they are provably false.
I think that misses what is going on here. The debate we are having is not between people who disagree about how to get to the truth. That's a different debate. The debate is between us folks here, where it is presumed for the sake of argument we agree that things like measurements and scientific controls are relevant for getting at the truth (or at least in gaining higher justification for a conclusion).
The debate is whether the people who do not share this epistemology - e.g. tweak-believing 'subjectivist' audiophiles - ought to be diagnosed as "not seeking the truth" or "not caring about the truth."
One side seems to be saying that if an audiophile has been presented with arguments and evidence for why his belief in implausible claims (e.g. bogus tweaks) is wrong, and how to correct it, and that audiophile continues to use the same method and believe the same falsehoods, it follows that audiophile does not really care about or is not seeking the truth.
OK, I think I agree with this analysis, and clearly that is the side I'm arguing. To make it more concrete, a hypothetical (but typical) example:
Amir measures the impedances and frequency responses of cable A vs. cable B, and finds them virtually identical.
Random "Subjectivist" (RS) posts that he recently compared the two cables in his "very highly resolving system", and heard "significant" audible differences.
Various ASR members (ASR) chime in to point out that existing scientific evidence indicates that RS is almost certainly imagining the differences.
RS states that the differences were "large and obvious", and that science isn't infallible and measurements can't possibly describe everything we hear.
ASR points out that expectation bias is a proven thing, and accounts for even "large" perceived differences in many cases.
RS states that it wasn't expectation bias because the results weren't what he was expecting before he did the comparison.
ASR points out that humans aren't even aware of many of their biases, and a blind test is the only reliable way to eliminate them.
RS states blind testing sounds like too much work, and repeats that the differences were OBVIOUS.
ASR says have a nice day, and enjoy your cables.
Alternate (universe) ending:
ASR points out that humans aren't even aware of many of their biases, and a double-blind test is the only reliable way to eliminate them.
Alternate RS says he hadn't realized that, and asks for instructions on conducting a legitimate blind test.
ASR complies, and says they are quite looking forward to the results, as all valid data is welcomed in any scientific field.
So, who cares about truth in these examples? Someone who is told that their perceptions/beliefs are contradicted by a large body of known science and how to test those beliefs in a controlled way, and then declines to do so? I would argue they do not. Note that while ASR may sound dogmatic to many, they are actually the open-minded party in this example. If valid
contradictory data is presented, scientists are willing (in fact, obligated) to investigate causes and possibly revise current theories.
I've argued for why I think that diagnosis is incorrect. Trying to parse it, as JP did, as saying "they think they have THEIR Truth" doesn't cut it. The think they have THE TRUTH which is why many of them will react just the same as people here would if the cable-believing audiophile said to Amir "You just have YOUR truth that the cables can't really technically make a difference. That's not THE TRUTH it's just YOUR TRUTH."
The crux is that "Amir's truth" is what results from applying scientific method and conducting valid, repeatable experiments, and it's shared
by millions of objectively-minded people around the globe.
That audiophile can continue to be sincerely mistaken even in the face of counter arguments/ evidence. Our minds often malfunction when seeking the truth (emphasis mine) and our mistaken beliefs are often quite recalcitrant. This should be obvious to all of us with experience dealing with other humans, let alone anyone who inhabits the typical internet forum. Further, the stubbornness of our beliefs in the face of counter argument/evidence has demonstrated over and over in research:
Correct, which is why we need objective methods and open minds if we want to make sure we stay on course.
I think you are confusing "seeking enjoyment" with "seeking truth" when it comes to Joe Sixpack audio enthusiast. In my experience, people who chase endless tweaks and exotic cables have little aptitude or interest in engineering or science, and therefore think that "everything makes a difference" and it's impossible to predict how something might sound without actually listening to it". It can be an excuse to cycle through insane amounts of gear in search of "perfect component synergy". If you want to consider such behavior "seeking truth", so be it. We can simply agree to disagree.