Abstract

Nancy Cartwright's comments ([2002]) expose some gaps and difficulties in the argument for the causal Markov condition in our essay ‘Independence, Invariance and the Causal Markov Condition’ ([1999]), and we are grateful for the opportunity to reformulate our position. In particular, Cartwright disagrees vigorously with many of the theses we advance about the connection between causation and manipulation. Although we are not persuaded by some of her criticisms, we shall confine ourselves to showing how our central argument can be reconstructed and to casting doubt on Cartwright's claim that the causal Markov condition typically fails when there are indeterministic by-products.

  1. Why believe the causal Markov condition?

  2. Causation and manipulation

  3. The argument

  4. Indeterministic by-products and the causal Markov condition

  5. The chemical factory counterexample and PM2

  6. Conclusions: causation and manipulability

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