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7. What does it mean to say that an argument is “circular”, that it “begs the question”? Construct an
example of an argument of this type different from the ones presented in this chapter.
When an argument is “circular” or that it “begs the question”, it does not give you a good reason to
accept the conclusion even if the premises and conclusion are true. If the premise was not accepted,
then the conclusion would not be accepted either.
The Earth is a planet.
Therefore, the Earth is a planet.
1. What is the difference between deductive validity and inductive strength?
Deductive validity is either valid or invalid, there is no middle ground. An argument of this type is based
on whether the premises are true, which in turn indicate whether the conclusion is true. Furthermore,
deductive valid arguments cannot introduce new information in the conclusion that wasn’t already
there, while inductive strength arguments can conclude on things that are beyond what was in the
premises. Inductive strength can either be stronger or weaker depending on the sample size and the
unbiasedness of it.
2. What is the difference between induction and abduction?
Induction is taking a description of a sample and extending it to things outside the sample, for example
sending out polls to figure out what the country’s preference of political parties are
Abduction is reaching the best explanation possible based on evidence and reasoning.
3. What factors affect how strong an inductive argument is?
The factors affecting how strong an inductive are the sample size and the unbiasedness of the sample.
PHLA10 Reason and Truth
1. Here's a little logical puzzle: you are in a strange land where everyone is either a
knight or a knave. Knights always tell the truth; knaves always lie. You meet two
of them, A and B. A says "we are both knaves". What are A and B? Prove it.
If A is right, then he has to be lying because he said that he is a knave as well. A cannot be a knight
because they cannot both be knaves or that would make his statement true. As thus, B must be a knight.
A is a knave and B is a knight.
2. What are the four main characteristics of God as Aquinas understood it?