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Subjunctive conditionals/counterfactual conditionals/Goodman: It is not that science could do without unreal conditional clauses.
Not only disposition predicates like "soluble" or "combustible" but also "red" and others. Ordinary predicates play a role.
As truth functions all subjunctive conditionals are true, of course, since their antecedents are false. If you wanted to check them empirically, they were not irrational anymore, since the antecedent would be made true.
Everything that was in my pocket on May 8 was made of silver.
Law: Although the supposed unifying principle is generally true and perhaps fully confirmed by observation of all cases, it cannot constitute a subjunctive conditional, because it describes a random fact and it is no law. And apparently no purely syntactic criterion can be useful, because the most specific description of individual facts can be brought into a shape that has any desired degree of syntactic generality.
Weisen der Welterzeugung Frankfurt 1984
Tatsache Fiktion Voraussage Frankfurt 1988
Sprachen der Kunst Frankfurt 1997
N. Goodman/K. Elgin
Revisionen Frankfurt 1989