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POLL - Is this argument valid?

 
Garret
 
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Garret
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Joined  16-01-2019
 
 
 
27 January 2019 16:30
 
Speakpigeon - 16 January 2019 03:47 AM

This thread is a poll on a logical argument.
Here is the argument:

For all we know, A may be the state of B;
What C does is determined by the state of B;
Therefore, for all we know, what C does may be determined by A.

Is the argument valid?

Please keep to one of the following four answers:

No
Yes
I don’t know
The argument doesn’t make sense

Please, don’t comment if you can’t answer the question asked.
EB

Yes, but it contains no useful information, unless you already know how A, B, and C interact.

For all we know, the money in my pocket may affect the state of my bank account.
The status of my bills is determined by my bank account.
Therefore, for all we know, what my bills do is determined by the money in my pocket.

The problem with this is we know there are situations where the money in my pocket isn’t mine.  Or it can be too little to pay my bills (a couple of pennies).  Heck, the money in my pocket could be confederate paper money.  It provides us with no concrete conclusion based off the available information, nor does the state of any one of our three objects actually changes the state of the other objects.  It MAY change them, but it may not.  I can replace the items like this:

For all we know, blue may change the state of pizza.
What Bob does is determined by pizza.
Therefore, for all we know, what Bob does may be determined by blue.

It’s nonsense.

 
Speakpigeon
 
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Speakpigeon
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28 January 2019 02:27
 
Garret - 27 January 2019 04:30 PM
Speakpigeon - 16 January 2019 03:47 AM

For all we know, A may be the state of B;
What C does is determined by the state of B;
Therefore, for all we know, what C does may be determined by A.

Is the argument valid?

Yes, but it contains no useful information, unless you already know how A, B, and C interact.

Sure. Good point. I’ll speak to Aristotle about that.

Garret - 27 January 2019 04:30 PM

For all we know, the money in my pocket may affect the state of my bank account.
The status of my bills is determined by my bank account.
Therefore, for all we know, what my bills do is determined by the money in my pocket.

For all we know, blue may change the state of pizza.
What Bob does is determined by pizza.
Therefore, for all we know, what Bob does may be determined by blue.

It’s nonsense.

Yes, I have to agree with you here. Your two arguments here are bad.
And they’re very different from my own.
Did you notice?
So, did you do it on purpose, motivated by an evil ulterior motive, or did you do it because your attention span is too short? Or some other reason, like “rational debate is not my forte, anyway”.
Still, these are all good reasons to do it.
EB

 
Garret
 
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Garret
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28 January 2019 07:48
 

Wait, above you’ve made arguments that you inclusion of redundant language is okay because we colloquially understand it’s meaning.

And you’re coming back at me with errors in word choice?  Interesting.

For all we know, blue may be the state of pizza.
What Bob does is determined by the state of pizza.
Therefore, for all we know, what Bob does may be determined by blue.

Here you go though.  Your argument framework results in nonsensical statements that are technically true.

 
Speakpigeon
 
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Speakpigeon
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29 January 2019 06:50
 
Garret - 28 January 2019 07:48 AM

Wait, above you’ve made arguments that you inclusion of redundant language is okay because we colloquially understand it’s meaning. And you’re coming back at me with errors in word choice?  Interesting.

That’s straightforward, wilful misrepresentation.
The language I used in the argument was for clarity, ease of understanding for as many people as possible, including people untrained in formal logic. All you need to understand the argument is to be a proficient speaker of English. You shouldn’t even need a dictionary like burt does for the words “equivocal” and “interpret”.
Second, your errors weren’t “word choice” as you say here. Your own version of my argument just didn’t have the same logical form as my own, presumably because you’ve just been careless in your consideration of it.

Garret - 28 January 2019 07:48 AM

For all we know, blue may be the state of pizza.
What Bob does is determined by the state of pizza.
Therefore, for all we know, what Bob does may be determined by blue.

All good.

Garret - 28 January 2019 07:48 AM

Here you go though.  Your argument framework results in nonsensical statements that are technically true.

Technically true?! What’s that?! A statement is true or not. You mean technically true but in fact false?! Whoa.
And then, it’s a derail.
I’m asking whether the argument is valid, not whether the statements in the argument are true or not.
So, for now, all I can tell is that you are good to assess validity, not whether you think anything about it.
So, could you go the last mile?
EB

 
Garret
 
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Garret
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29 January 2019 08:01
 
Speakpigeon - 29 January 2019 06:50 AM
Garret - 28 January 2019 07:48 AM

Wait, above you’ve made arguments that you inclusion of redundant language is okay because we colloquially understand it’s meaning. And you’re coming back at me with errors in word choice?  Interesting.

That’s straightforward, wilful misrepresentation.
The language I used in the argument was for clarity, ease of understanding for as many people as possible, including people untrained in formal logic. All you need to understand the argument is to be a proficient speaker of English. You shouldn’t even need a dictionary like burt does for the words “equivocal” and “interpret”.
Second, your errors weren’t “word choice” as you say here. Your own version of my argument just didn’t have the same logical form as my own, presumably because you’ve just been careless in your consideration of it.

Garret - 28 January 2019 07:48 AM

For all we know, blue may be the state of pizza.
What Bob does is determined by the state of pizza.
Therefore, for all we know, what Bob does may be determined by blue.

All good.

Garret - 28 January 2019 07:48 AM

Here you go though.  Your argument framework results in nonsensical statements that are technically true.

Technically true?! What’s that?! A statement is true or not. You mean technically true but in fact false?! Whoa.
And then, it’s a derail.
I’m asking whether the argument is valid, not whether the statements in the argument are true or not.
So, for now, all I can tell is that you are good to assess validity, not whether you think anything about it.
So, could you go the last mile?
EB

Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

 
Poldano
 
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Poldano
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31 January 2019 23:52
 

There is a weaselly substitution of an existential expression for what I originally assumed to be a universal expression somewhere among the arguments here. Specifically, calling B “a group of neurons in the brain” in two different expressions is misleading, and leads to a casual assumption of identity when there is none. This is independent of the “may” qualification in the first expression. Changing the “may” qualification in the conclusion to a “must” (i.e., making the qualification a universal) would yield a valid conclusion only if the group of neurons in the the first premise were identical to the group of neurons in the second premise.

Here is the originally constructed argument changed to universal qualifiers:

A is the state of B.
C is caused by the state of B.
Therefore, C is caused by A.

Here is the existential substitution into the universal conversion of the original:

A is the state of some B’ that is a subset of B.
C is caused by some B” that is a subset of B.

In this construction, it is clear that the conclusion C is caused by A is invalid unless B’ is identical to B”.

As others have pointed out, the existential qualifications are moot from a logical standpoint, and are only useful to fool at least some of the people some of the time. Converting the casual existential statements into formal existential statements would suffice to show that the arguments have no more logical strength than innuendo.

 
 
Speakpigeon
 
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Speakpigeon
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02 February 2019 06:05
 
Poldano - 31 January 2019 11:52 PM

There is a weaselly substitution of an existential expression for what I originally assumed to be a universal expression somewhere among the arguments here. Specifically, calling B “a group of neurons in the brain” in two different expressions is misleading, and leads to a casual assumption of identity when there is none. This is independent of the “may” qualification in the first expression. Changing the “may” qualification in the conclusion to a “must” (i.e., making the qualification a universal) would yield a valid conclusion only if the group of neurons in the the first premise were identical to the group of neurons in the second premise.

Here is the originally constructed argument changed to universal qualifiers:

A is the state of B.
C is caused by the state of B.
Therefore, C is caused by A.

Here is the existential substitution into the universal conversion of the original:

A is the state of some B’ that is a subset of B.
C is caused by some B” that is a subset of B.

In this construction, it is clear that the conclusion C is caused by A is invalid unless B’ is identical to B”.

As others have pointed out, the existential qualifications are moot from a logical standpoint, and are only useful to fool at least some of the people some of the time. Converting the casual existential statements into formal existential statements would suffice to show that the arguments have no more logical strength than innuendo.

Derail.
If you are convinced you’re trying to respond to one of my posts, please quote the post and quote the relevant part of the post.
Short of that, I can only assume you’re talking to yourself.
Here is a reminder of the two arguments discussed in this thread…
First argument:

For all we know, A may be the state of B;
What C does is determined by the state of B;
Therefore, for all we know, what C does may be determined by A

Second argument:

x may be some part of B;
y is some part of B;
Therefore, x may be y.

Are these arguments valid?
EB

 
Nhoj Morley
 
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Nhoj Morley
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02 February 2019 10:42
 

Your amusement value to the patrons is thinning out, Mr. Pigeon. I have to wonder why your threads should not be moved to The Hall of Holy Grails or the Forum Funway. Are there any interesting implications to your argument? Is there a larger point you are trying to make? Make it soon.

Are these argument valid? No, they are silly.

 
 
mapadofu
 
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mapadofu
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02 February 2019 11:22
 

The argument doesn’t make sense.  It depends on what “A may be the state of B” formalizes to.

 
Speakpigeon
 
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Speakpigeon
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06 February 2019 03:29
 
mapadofu - 02 February 2019 11:22 AM

The argument doesn’t make sense.  It depends on what “A may be the state of B” formalizes to.

Your post doesn’t make sense.  It depends on what “make sense” formalises to.
EB

 
Speakpigeon
 
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Speakpigeon
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06 February 2019 03:34
 
Nhoj Morley - 02 February 2019 10:42 AM

Your amusement value to the patrons is thinning out, Mr. Pigeon. I have to wonder why your threads should not be moved to The Hall of Holy Grails or the Forum Funway. Are there any interesting implications to your argument? Is there a larger point you are trying to make? Make it soon.

Are these argument valid? No, they are silly.

This is a thread is to discuss the validity of a logical argument. That’s the point of it. What’s silly about that?!
Here is the argument again:

For all we know, A may be the state of B;
What C does is determined by the state of B;
Therefore, for all we know, what C does may be determined by A.

What would be silly in there?!
Beats me.
EB

 
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