Evaluating Truth and Validity

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By cupcake0320
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Evaluating truth and validity for arguments is important. I will choose arguments from the Applications list 12.2(a-y) that is at the end of Chapter 2 in The Art of Thinking to evaluate for truth and validity. The first argument will be exercise j and the statement is, “power must be evil because it can corrupt people (Ruggiero, 2012)”. The first step of the evaluation process involves evaluating to look for any hidden premises, and ensuring that it is stated in a clear way and fully. This argument passes the first the step. The next step involves checking whether the statement has errors that affect truth. To begin with, the first part of the statement that says that power corrupts all people-in this case, all is inferred- is untrue. This is because throughout history, there are several examples of people who had power that was not corrupted. To make the argument more valid, it would be rewritten as, “power can be evil since it can corrupt some people (Ruggiero, 2012).” The next step entails evaluating the argument to check for validity of errors, and also determining the reasoning that connects conclusions to premises. The aim of this is to check whether the conclusion is legitimate or illegitimate. In this case, the argument fails on several points. On top of revising it, the argument has several questions that required answers. One of the main questions is: how corrupt should people be before they are considered “evil”? Several people are corrupt but they would not be considered evil. The other question is; what is considered evil? What is considered evil by one may be considered perfectly good by one person, or unacceptable but not “evil”. In other words, people have different opinions on what is considered evil. Finally, this argument is very flawed, hence throwing it out and coming up with a different argument is the only choice. “Power that is used for evil…...

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