Of Parsimony and Ockham’s Razor

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“I offer no apology; I am the victim here, not a miscreant.”~ Joseph Rakofsky

Occam’s razor, also known as Ockham’s razor, or in Latin referred to as lex parsimoniae (the law of parsimony, economy or succinctness), is the principle that among competing hypotheses, the one that makes the fewest new assumptions usually offers the correct one, and that the simplest explanation will be the most plausible until evidence is presented to prove it false.

My co-defendant and local counsel in the Rakofsky v. The Internet lawsuit, Eric Turkewitz has  posted a new update #4 which includes a new court filing by the plaintiff, Joseph Rakofsky:

Update #4, 1/31/12 – Rakofsky’s Reply to other defense opposition to the motion in the Appellate Division to lift the stay for him only. No response to our papers (which were served 1/26/12, one day before they were due to be served): RakofskyReply. The opposing papers to which he refers are here: Teschner  (Yampolsky) Opp and Weissman (Reuters) Opp

Some may describe Rakofsky’s Reply Affidavit and legal writing in uncharitable terms:



















Not I. I merely report the facts in evidence. Yet, the correct adjective escapes me…Ah, yes, “incomprehensible”, or as in Rakofsky’s own words:

The subtleties of Rakofsky’s formidable legal argument and rhetorical flourishes are exemplified in the following precatory phrasing:

As Ken @ Popehat remarked on Twitter:

par·si·mo·ni·ous (pär s -m n – s). adj. Excessively sparing or frugal. par si·mo ni·ous·ly adv. par si·mo ni·ous·ness n.

Whatever one may think of Mr. Rakofsky or his lawsuit, one cannot call him parsimonious in his prose.

As Edmund Burke once said:

Mere parsimony is not economy. Expense, and great expense, may be an essential part in true economy.

Or, in the immortal words of Titus Livius:

There is nothing worse than being ashamed of parsimony or poverty.

The day of judicial reckoning fast approaches….

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2 Responses to “Of Parsimony and Ockham’s Razor”

  1. Leo M. Mulvihill, Jr. Says:

    Reblogged this on Philly Law Blog and commented:
    Better than I ever could have said it.

  2. Antonin I. Pribetic Says:

    Thank you, Leo.

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