Topics: Logic, Energy development, Nuclear power Pages: 3 (946 words) Published: July 11, 2014
Evaluating Truth and Validity Exercise
July 7th, 2014
Richard Burgoon

Evaluating Truth and Validity Exercise

The arguments I choose to assess for truth and validity will be three statements taken from the Application's list 12.2 (a -y) at the end of Ch. 12, “The Art of Thinking” publication. I will start with the statement (j) the premise that "power must be evil because it can corrupt people." Checking the argument for any hidden premises and ensuring it is stated fully and in a clear concise way is the first step. This argument seems to pass the first hurdle, however after checking for errors affecting truth, the argument has flaws. Beginning with, the part of the argument that says power corrupts people is not true since there are many examples throughout history of powerful people that were not corrupt. A more valid argument would be to state "power may be evil because it can corrupt some people." When checking the argument for validity errors and considering the reasoning to determine the legitimacy, the argument fails on more than one point. Even with the revised statement, there are some questions that need answering, such as how corrupt do you have to become before you are considered "evil"? There are people who have done something corrupt, yet I would not consider them "evil." Then there is the question of what you consider "evil,” what some may consider acceptable may be unacceptable to others. For example the death penalty, some approve others consider it "evil." In the end, I find this premise so flawed that the only thing to do is to throw it out and embrace a different argument. “Power used for evil purposes, “evil” being defined as causing harm or injury to someone, can create social dysfunction. Whereas, power in the hands of the righteous creates social prosperity.” My next argument to evaluate for truth and validity will be (r), “If the Social Security System is further weakened, the elderly will have to fear poverty....

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