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Mike

_But there will be specific cognitive circumstances where intuition is plausibly unreliable. (Cf., perception is generally reliable, but there will be specific cognitive circumstances where it is unreliable.)_

Why believe that perception is *generally* reliable? It is not reliable at all concerning the size of objects at a distance, and at least half of our perceptions include objects that are not close enough to get a reliable estimation of their size (or shape or color...). Perception is reliable (as van Inwagen notes) when we're talking about objects, events, etc. that are sufficiently close to us. As you know, van Inwagen presses the analogy a bit. Is it possible that my desk is located closer to the northern wall of the house? Yes, but that is an intuition about a "nearby possibility". But with (even) mid-range possibities--say, unproven mathematical or set-theoretic propositions--our modal intuitions count for almost nothing. Of course, it might be urged that there are also metaphysical possibilities--zombies and such--concerning which modal intuition *might* be reliable. But these intuitions face no friction and so we can't tell how reliable they are. Modal intuitions in mathematics at least come up against proofs! So it seems to me difficult to make the case that such intutions are *generally* reliable.

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