Inconsistent Models for Relevant Arithmetics


  • Robert K. Meyer Australian National University
  • Chris Mortensen University of Adelaide



This paper develops in certain directions the work of Meyer in [3], [4], [5] and [6] (see also Routley [10] and Asenjo [11]). In those works, Peano’s axioms for arithmetic were formulated with a logical base of the relevant logic R, and it was proved finitistically that the resulting arithmetic, called R♯, was absolutely consistent. It was pointed out that such a result escapes incau- tious formulations of Goedel’s second incompleteness theorem, and provides a basis for a revived Hilbert programme. The absolute consistency result used as a model arithmetic modulo two. Modulo arithmetics are not or- dinarily thought of as an extension of Peano arithmetic, since some of the propositions of the latter, such as that zero is the successor of no number, fail in the former. Consequently a logical base which, unlike classical logic, tolerates contradictory theories was used for the model. The logical base for the model was the three-valued logic RM3 (see e.g. [1] or [8]), which has the advantage that while it is an extension of R, it is finite valued and so easier to handle.

The resulting model-theoretic structure (called in this paper RM32) is interesting in its own right in that the set of sentences true therein consti- tutes a negation inconsistent but absolutely consistent arithmetic which is an extension of R♯. In fact, in the light of the result of [6], it is an extension of Peano arithmetic with a base of a classical logic, P♯. A generalisation of the structure is to modulo arithmetics with the same logical base RM3, but with varying moduli (called RM3i here). We first study the properties of these arithmetics in this paper. The study is then generalised by vary- ing the logical base, to give the arithmetics RMni, of logical base RMn and modulus i. Not all of these exist, however, as arithmetical properties and logical properties interact, as we will show. The arithmetics RMni give rise, on intersection, to an inconsistent arithmetic RMω which is not of modulo i for any i. We also study its properties, and, among other results, we show by finitistic means that the more natural relevant arithmetics R♯ and R♯♯ are incomplete (whether or not consistent and recursively enumerable). In the rest of the paper we apply these techniques to several topics, particularly relevant quantum arithmetic in which we are able to show (unlike classical quantum arithmetic) that the law of distribution remains unprovable. Aside from its intrinsic interest, we regard the present exercise as a demonstration that inconsistent theories and models are of mathematical worth and interest.


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