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Philosophy questions

  • Academic-level:
    College
  • Discipline:
    Philosophy
  • Type of paper:
    Case study
Task:

1. Explain the difference between an invalid deductive argument and a strong inductive argument. Why is it correct to consider one to be a “good” argument and the other one a “bad” argument?

2. The following argument is deductively invalid. Indicate the form, or structure, of the argument, and provide your own counterexample (i.e., an example with all true premises and a false conclusion) that clearly shows the invalidity.

3. Argument construction.

 

Philosophy: Assignment One

1. Explain the difference between an invalid deductive argument and a strong inductive argument. Why is it correct to consider one to be a “good” argument and the other one a “bad” argument? 

While deductive reasoning involves applying information, background or some overall rules/policies in order to obtain a proven and reasonable conclusion, inductive argument is about suggesting generalizations based on the studied behavior in specific situations. It involves more logical thinking and guessing rather than making a decision drawn from the given information. Deductive reasoning can be valid or invalid. However, inductive arguments make it possible that a conclusion is false even if the background is absolutely correct. Thus, these arguments can be very strong or weak.

To understand the difference between strong inductive and invalid deductive statements, it is important to mind their definitions first. In inductive claim, the truth of the retrieved information really proves that the outcome is most likely true. In other words, if the probability of the argument is higher than 50 percent, it is considered a strong one. An invalid deductive argument stands for the one where the truth of the background information does not enforce the truth of the conclusion. So, all of the data given can be true, but the conclusion will be false.

So, a strong inductive argument is a “good” one as it has more than 50% chances to turn truth. To my mind, the conclusion weighs more than supportive premises as it is something that comes in the end and does matter. As for the invalid deductive reasoning, it is not relevant as its conclusion fails to be true. In deductive argument, a conclusion makes no sense and there is no logical connection among the sentences. That is why it does not matter.

2. The following argument is deductively invalid. Indicate the form, or structure, of the argument, and provide your own counterexample (i.e., an example with all true premises and a false conclusion) that clearly shows the invalidity. 

First of all, the argument talks about two different characteristics, two different types of people: cynical and meticulous. They can have something in common, but still the first two sentences are not logically connected. Disgruntled humans are not necessarily meticulous despite cynics are disgruntled because only some meticulous people can be cynical.

The form of the argument helps to determine it is an invalid deductive type. The correctness of the antecedent (A) in the provided example is not sufficient by itself for the truth of the consequent (B). the structure of this sentence is just like the structure of deductively invalid arguments should be: if A, then B. A follows. Therefore, B. As a counterexample, I can recall another argument of the same type. “If Johnny Wright died of asthma, then Wright is dead now. Wright is dead today. Therefore, Johnny Wright died of asthma.” But the conclusion is not necessarily true.

Finally, I will provide a counterexample to support the idea the sentence is an invalid deductive type. I have developed a claim in which all informative sentences are absolutely true, but the conclusion is obviously false. “If there is any form of life on Mars, then humans can live on this planet. It was proven that some bacteria types exist on Mars. People of Earth can live on Mars.” However, we all know that human body has a different structure and needs. Unlike other species, humans require more elements that most probably are absent on Mars. So, we deal with an invalid deductive logic.

3. Argument construction.

The possession, ownership, and sale of handguns should be outlawed.

That is an alternative of my choice. When thinking about evidence to support my argument, I have recalled the events in American Schools such as Columbine when two kids shut innocent students and a couple of professors just in school. It happened in a daytime without any good reason. According to the official version, they were overloaded with the game violence after playing such shooting games as “Doom” and “Counter Strike”. However, the dad of one of the boys had an opened access to the weapon in his house. So, because of the law that allows anyone to carry weapon in that state in order to protect selves, the boys took the guns and committed that horrible crime. In the end, they committed a double suicide. From one hand, having a right to keep and use weapon legally makes it possible to defend our homes from thieves and other types of criminals. From the other hand, it endangers the life of the entire nation as anyone can carry a gun without thinking about further consequences.

So, if the possession, ownership, and sale of handguns is not outlawed in some parts of the United States, then everyone can carry a handgun and murder innocent people.

The possession, ownership, and sale of handguns is not outlawed in some parts of the United States.

Therefore, everyone can carry a handgun and murder innocent people.

I can prove that my argument is valid, so it is reasonable enough. In this case, the truth of the antecedent (A) is sufficient by itself for the truth of the consequent (B). I can claim that everybody can kill people because there is no law that forbids handing it over for free usage.

 

References

Brown, H. D. (1994). Teaching by Principles. Englewood Cliffs : Prentice Hall Regents.

Shaffer, C. (1989). A Comparison of Inductive and Deductive Approaches to Teaching

Foreign Languages. The Modern Language Journal. 73 (4): 395-403.

Thornbury, S. (1999). How to Teach Grammar. Harlow: Longman.

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