When someone claims that we should believe in such

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(When someone claims that we should believe in such-and-such because nobody has proved that it isn’t so, we have a version of burden of proof known as appeal to ignorance .) BEGGING THE QUESTION And this brings us to the real problem in cases of question begging: a misunderstanding of what premises (and definitions) it is reasonable for one’s audience to accept. We are guilty of begging the question when we ask our audience to accept premises that are as controversial as the conclusion we’re arguing for and that are controversial on the same grounds. Summary Personal attack ad hominem— thinking a person’s defects refute his or her beliefs Inconsistency ad hominem —thinking a person’s inconsistencies refute his or her beliefs Circumstantial ad hominem —thinking a person’s circumstances refute his or her beliefs Poisoning the well —encouraging others to dismiss what someone will say, by citing the speaker’s defects, inconsistencies, circumstances, or other personal attributes Genetic fallacy —thinking that the origin or history of a belief refutes it Straw man —“rebutting” a position held or presumed to be held by others by offering a distorted or exaggerated version of that position False dilemma —an erroneous narrowing down of the range of alternatives; saying we have to accept X or Y (and omitting that we might accept Z) Perfectionist fallacy —arguing that if a solution does not solve a problem completely and perfectly, it should not be adopted at all Line-drawing fallacy —requiring that a precise line be drawn someplace on a scale or continuum when no such precise line can be drawn; usually occurs when a vague concept is treated like a precise one Slippery slope —refusing to take the first step in a progression on unwarranted grounds that doing so will make taking the remaining steps inevitable, or insisting erroneously on taking the remainder of the steps simply because the first one was taken Misplacing the burden of proof —requiring the wrong side of an issue to make its case Begging the question —assuming as true the claim that is at issue and doing this as if you were giving an argument Week 5
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Chapter 8 : Deductive Arguments I: Categorical Logic CATEGORICAL CLAIMS Categorical logic is logic based on the relations of inclusion and exclusion among classes (or “categories”) as stated in categorical claims. Categorical logic is useful in clarifying and analyzing deductive arguments. A categorical claim says something about classes (or “categories”) of things. Our interest lies in categorical claims of certain standard forms. A standard-form categorical claim is a claim that results from putting names or descriptions of classes into the blanks of the following structures: The phrases that go in the blanks are terms ; the one that goes into the first blank is the subject term of the claim, and the one that goes into the second blank is the predicate term .
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Christopher Reinemann
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