Favourite arguments

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Reply Wed 11 Mar, 2009 09:45 pm
If you had to pick, what would be your favourite argument (for whatever it may be, it doesn't matter) you've read by a philosopher? And why?
 
Victor Eremita
 
Reply Wed 11 Mar, 2009 10:05 pm
@Holiday20310401,
1. Kierkegaard's Argument For Self-Determination. Aristotle argues that everyone is searching for happiness via contemplation. Kierkegaard's argues that a good life is not necessarily happiness via contemplation. Everyone's life consists of choices and goals and that your life consists of your choices and goals. Some may choose to contemplate to find happiness, some will choose other goals. Whatever you choose, is yours alone, and not even Aristotle can dictate what a good life must consist of.

2. and 3. Hume's Problem of Induction and Kierkegaard's Psychological Workaround. Really you can't logically get past Hume here. Just because it happened in the past, doesn't mean it'll happen in the future. So why do we form beliefs about the future anyway? Kierkegaard agrees with Hume and doesn't try solve or dissolve the problem, but rather explains the psychological mechanism that enables us to do so, a Leap.
 
Parapraxis
 
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2009 02:59 am
@Victor Eremita,
1. Wittgenstein's private language argument
2. Erich Fromm's political/social manifesto for humanism inspired democratic socialism
 
Theaetetus
 
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2009 06:43 am
@Holiday20310401,
Locke's argument against innate ideas. The fact that children and idiots don't seem to have them is more than enough to destroy the concept of innate ideas.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2009 01:15 pm
@Theaetetus,
You guys have pretty deep favorite arguments. I especially second Theaetetus and Locke's argument against innate ideas. Good stuff.

My favorite argument by far is the Chewbacca defense. If I may deliver an excerpt from Record Companies v Chef (i.e. the case of the stinky britches).

VideCorSpoon wrote:

Cochran

Ladies and gentlemen of this supposed jury, Chef's attorney would certainly want you to believe that his client wrote "Stinky Britches" ten years ago. And they make a good case. Hell, I almost felt pity myself! But, ladies and gentlemen of this supposed jury, I have one final thing I want you to consider. Ladies and gentlemen, this is Chewbacca. Chewbacca is a Wookiee from the planet Kashyyyk. But Chewbacca lives on the planet Endor. Now think about it; that does not make sense!

Gerald Broflovski

Damn it!

Chef

What?

Gerald

He's using the Chewbacca defense!

Cochran

Why would a Wookiee, an eight-foot tall Wookiee, want to live on Endor, with a bunch of two-foot tall Ewoks? That does not make sense! But more important, you have to ask yourself: What does this have to do with this case? Nothing. Ladies and gentlemen, it has nothing to do with this case! It does not make sense! Look at me. I'm a lawyer defending a major record company, and I'm talkin' about Chewbacca! Does that make sense? Ladies and gentlemen, I am not making any sense! None of this makes sense! And so you have to remember, when you're in that jury room deliberatin' and conjugatin' the Emancipation Proclamation, [approaches and softens] does it make sense? No! Ladies and gentlemen of this supposed jury, it does not make sense! If Chewbacca lives on Endor, you must acquit! The defense rests

Chewbacca Defense - Video



As you can see, the argument is clearly solid and flawless leaving no room for either side to maneuver. So, to tie this in, perhaps it is an example of an Aristotelian enthymeme or something like that.
 
RDanneskjld
 
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2009 01:53 pm
@Holiday20310401,
1. Wittgenstein's private language argument

2. John Searle's Chinese Room argument which attempts to show that computation doesnt imply cognition.
 
Theaetetus
 
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2009 02:07 pm
@Holiday20310401,
How could I forget the Chewbacca defense?!
 
Zetherin
 
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2009 02:26 pm
@Holiday20310401,
I like just screaming:

"You're a dumbass!!!"

Then I walk away.





I win every time.
 
Victor Eremita
 
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2009 03:46 pm
@Holiday20310401,
Brilliant, love the Chewbacca Defense
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Thu 12 Mar, 2009 06:14 pm
@Victor Eremita,
Erving Goffman's Dramaturgical Analysis of micromanaged image control in social frames.

Clifford Geertz: Thick description, contexual interpretation of the other.
 
Parapraxis
 
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 02:29 am
@GoshisDead,
GoshisDead wrote:
Erving Goffman's Dramaturgical Analysis of micromanaged image control in social frames.


Totally forgot about that (and how could I); I certainly would have had that up there too had I remembered.

I've also saved the Chewbacca defence video, just in case I ever need it to win an argument.
 
Maladjusted
 
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 02:39 am
@Holiday20310401,
Ah, the Chewbacca defense. Sublime. It can't help but kill this thread 'though.

I mean, who could possibly top THAT?!?. Is that why Gosh, has taken to bravely, but doubtless, quixotically invoking whole sociological/anthropological paradigms to try and up the ante on everyone's favourite wookie? Heroic, but still likely to end with a victory for...Endor. Smile
 
Poseidon
 
Reply Fri 13 Mar, 2009 11:35 pm
@Holiday20310401,
Descartes :

God is Perfection.
Perfection exists.
:. God exists.
 
Victor Eremita
 
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 01:16 am
@Holiday20310401,
Poseidon wrote:
Descartes :

God is Perfection.
Perfection exists.
:. God exists.

Is that a petitio principii? Didn't you just presuppose God in the premises?
 
Theaetetus
 
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 06:36 am
@Poseidon,
Poseidon wrote:
Descartes :

God is Perfection.
Perfection exists.
:. God exists.


This is one of the reasons why I had picked John Locke's argument against innate ideas. Descartes argument presupposes God's existence due to clear and distinct perceptions, which rely on innate ideas. Because there are no innate ideas, this argument proves nothing other than an idea of a supremely perfect being, God, exists.

The argument is stated improperly anyway. Here is a more accurate formulation:
1. I have an idea of a supremely perfect being with all perfections.
2. Necessary existence is a perfection.
3. Therefore, a supremely perfect being exists.
 
Kolbe
 
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 10:35 am
@Theaetetus,
Favourite argument has to be:

Bobby Henderson wrote:

"I think we can all look forward to the time when these three theories are given equal time in our science classrooms across the country, and eventually the world; One third time for Intelligent Design, one third time for Flying Spaghetti Monsterism, and one third time for logical conjecture based on overwhelming observable evidence."


Just because the idea gives me an excuse to act like a pirate once a year. September 19th people, count down the days.
 
manored
 
Reply Sat 14 Mar, 2009 11:28 am
@Holiday20310401,
My favorite argument as quoted out from "The salmon of doubt", a book from Douglas Adams I am reading.

" A guy said to me, "Yes, but the whole theory of evolution is based on a tautology: That which survives, survives." This is tautological, therefore it doesn't mean anything. I thought about that for a while and it finally occurred to me that a tautology is something that if it means nothing, not only that no information has gone into it, but that no consequence has come out of it. So we may have accidentally stumbled upon the ultimate answer; it's the only thing, the only force, arguably the most powerful of which we are aware, which requires no other input, no other support from any other place, is self-evident, hence tautological, but nevertheless astonishingly powerful in its effects. It's hard to find anything that corresponds to that, and I therefore put it at the beginning of one of my books. I reduced it to what I thought were the bare essentials, which are very similar to the ones you came up with earlier, which were "Anything that happens happens, anything that in happening causes something else to happen causes something else to happen and anything that in happening causes itself to happen again, happens again." In fact you don't even need the second two because they flow from the first one, which is self-evident and there's nothing else you need to say; everything else flows from that. So I think we have in our grasp here a fundamental, ultimate truth, against which there is no gainsaying. It was spotted by the guy who said this is a tautology. Yes, it is, but it's a unique tautology in that it requires no information to go in, but an infinite amount of information comes out of it. "

I havent really understood it well, but makes sense... I think Smile
 
 

 
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