250A Lecture 3

250A Lecture 3 - WE BEGIN WITH A QUESTION THAT WAS RAISED...

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15 WE BEGIN WITH A QUESTION THAT WAS RAISED VIA EMAIL: IS THE FOLLOWING ARGUMENT VALID? P1. BILL PLAYS BASKETBALL C. BILL EXISTS WHAT DO YOU THINK? TOPIC: DEDUCTIVE AND INDUCTIVE ARGUMENTS UP TO THIS POINT, WE HAVE BEEN DISCUSSING DEDUCTIVE ARGUMENTS. LET US NOW TURN TO BRIEFLY EXAMINE THE CONCEPT OF INDUCTIVE ARGUMENTS. EXAMPLE) P1. MOST US AIR FLIGHTS DO NOT CRASH P2. MY FLIGHT TO NEW YORK IS A US AIR FLIGHT C. THEREFORE, MY FLIGHT TO NY WILL NOT CRASH QUESTION: IS THE ABOVE EXAMPLE A VALID ARGUMENT? WELL, DOES THE FACT THAT P1 AND P2 ARE TRUE GUARANTEE MY SAFETY? INDUCTIVE ARGUMENTS CANNOT BE VALID; VALIDITY, AS WE USE THE TERM HERE, APPLIES ONLY TO DEDUCTIVE ARGUMENTS. NOW, OF COURSE THIS DOESN’T MEAN THAT INDUCTIVE ARGUMENTS CANNOT BE (IN SOME SENSE) BETTER OR WORSE…
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16 INSTEAD OF CLASSIFYING INDUCTIVE ARGUMENTS AS VALID/INVALID, IT IS USEFUL TO APPEAL TO THE CONCEPT OF INDUCTIVE STRENGTH . AN INDUCTIVE ARGUMENT IS INDUCTIVELY STRONG TO THE DEGREE THAT THE PREMISES OF THE ARGUMENT WARRANT ITS CONCLUSION.
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