Midterm 1


1.         It has been said that knowledge is power.  When one person communicates with another, different perspectives of an argument are bound to occur. [SAL1] We all want our side of the argument to “win” over the other person, but the important thing is to remember when pursuing this accomplishment, is to make a deductive, valid, argument. [SAL2] An example of a valid deductive argument would be:

*[SAL3] Jimmy is Lauren’s son. So, Lauren is Jimmy’s mother.

In this case, the premise, first sentence, is supporting and guaranteeing [SAL4] the conclusion, the second sentence.

            An invalid deductive argument is one that states the premises, [SAL5] but the conclusion, as a result, is not guaranteed[SAL6] . An example would be:

                        *[SAL7] The Los Angeles Lakers are the three time back to back to back NBA champions. The Utah Jazz is in seventh place.  The Lakers will beat the Jazz.


In this argument, both premises are valid, however, this does not support or guarantee the conclusion.[SAL8] 


            Inductive arguments are where [SAL9] the conclusion is likely if the premises are true. They are logically incorrect if the arguer's claim is false[SAL10] : the conclusion is not likely if the premises are true. An example being:

                        *[SAL11] The Sacramento Kings lost to the Los Angeles Lakers last season in the NBA playoffs.  The Lakers have won nine of ten games Mark Madsen (Mad Dog) has started.  Mad Dog is starting in the game tonight. The Lakers will win tonight.[SAL12] 



2.         Just because every person is entitled to an opinion does not mean that every person’s opinion is correct. Correct in what sense? This all depends on what the opinion is regarding. Some opinions may be subjective with an objective reasoning. [SAL13] An opinion, therefore, is epistemologically subjective because there are no generally recognized methods for deciding whether it is true or false. 

There is not one correct opinion. [SAL14] There may be an understanding in society that acknowledges [SAL15] a certain opinion as correct, but this understanding alone is not one hundred percent justifiable, and never will be, unless there is a law that prohibits it.  [SAL16] If an opinion or claim is epistemologically objective, there are generally recognized methods for deciding whether a claim is true or false.  In this case, the subjective opinion or claim is objectively backed.  [SAL17] 

If a child falls off a skateboard and experiences pain, the child then may have a subjective opinion that skateboards can cause pain.  This child’s opinion is backed by the reality of the objective,[SAL18]  pain.  There are some things that are a reality for every organism, and there are some that are experienced subjectively or objectively.  All of these experiences mold our views of reality, and enable each individual to be unique.  There will always be opinions or claims that may seem subjective until there is an expressed objective reasoning.  [SAL19] 


3.                  Lines cannot be drawn [SAL20] in some instances.  On the issue of abortion, when the fetus is aborted it is “abortion” no matter when this occurs.  When a lady eats a chip thinking one won’t make her fat, eats another thinking it’s only one more, and so on, she is being disillusioned.  One will not make her fat, but she does not know when to stop.  There are mandatory nutritional guides for these kinds of people.  For example, thirteen chips could be eight grams of fat, meaning one chip is a little over half a gram of fat.  All she has to do is judge how much she can have accordingly. Personal lines are definitely necessary in every situation, not just nutritionally.  Each person is a unique individual that must live a life that suits him or her best.  When dealing with issues involving a societal decision, the majority vote will favor.  This is the way society has evolved, and whether or not each person agrees to the fullest extent of where the lines are drawn is irrelevant.  There will never be enough lines to satisfy every person, and there need not be unless situations get out of control. 

We, as individuals, [SAL21] need to worry only about ourselves, and those lives that we negatively affect.  I say this in reference to and in light of the current state of our nation.  As individuals, we have drawn personal lines on our opinions, some being for and some against the war.  As a united nation, we have not yet drawn the line between ourselves and Iraq, and this is why we are at war. Of course this is only my subjective opinion, I have drawn the line for myself, and hopefully everything will unfold smoothly (without any more lives being taken).[SAL22] 

 [SAL1] 50  Why? This seems just false. People seem to agree about math arguments, for example.

 [SAL2] 10 wordy --The use of the term “valid” implies “deductive” already.  (Only deductive args are said to be valid.)

 [SAL3]  13 What is the asterisk doing here?  Usually the asterisk indicates a note, and comes AFTER the relevant item. 

 [SAL4] 10 wordy – “supports” or “guarantees”  would be enough

 [SAL5] 32  All arguments have premises.  There is nothing special about invalid arguments in this respect.  People make statements (“state”).

 [SAL6] 22 avoid passive

 [SAL7] 13 asterisk?

 [SAL8] 4, 44  Premises are not “valid”; they are true or false.  Only arguments are valid.

 [SAL9] 25

 [SAL10] 44 which “arguer’s claim”?  An inductive argument could be logically correct even if all its claims are false.

 [SAL11] 13

 [SAL12] Wasn’t this question supposed to talk about why reasonable people should accept the conclusions of sound arguments?

 [SAL13] 36

 [SAL14] 52  It’s my opinion that two plus two is four.

 [SAL15] 10 Society may acknowledge

 [SAL16] 32 HUH?

 [SAL17] 22

 [SAL18] 13

 [SAL19] 32

 [SAL20] 22

 [SAL21] 10

 [SAL22] 37


In this last essay you need to talk about open and closed concepts and the continuum fallacy.




Content Grade: F

(Not sufficient familiarity with concepts and terminology of assigned reading)





I wonder if you read the comments on your previous essay assignments, Lucille.  These questions are essentially chances to rewrite those.  I have tried to give you a lot of feedback on those, so you could do better on these.  Those didn’t count much, but unfortunately, this counts a lot!  I’m sure you feel frustrated, and I do too.