Argumentum e silentio

Raymond de Hoop rdehoop at
Thu Feb 22 01:27:40 EST 2001

>> You're fond of arguments from silence, aren't you?  There's more to
>> the Deborah story than the song, in case you didn't know.  If all
>> you can come up with are arguments from silence, then perhaps
>> you need to learn the expression "absence of evidence is not
>> evidence of absence."  Considering the social/governmental
>> position that we are told Deborah was in, it's reasonable to
>> conclude that there were at least some instances when she had to
>> write.  But apparently, arguments from silence are the best you
>> can muster, so I see no reason to continue this conversation.

I'm glad you've analysed my postings and my scholarly work so carefully,
that you're able to give the judgment that I'm fond of "arguments from

But apparently you do not know that bringing in the "argument from
silence"-argument is an argument from silence itself: It cannot be proven
that it did not exist, so it could have existed. That is the argument that
you are bringing in, and it's from silence itself.

But well, who knows, you may be correct with regard to Deborah. In your view
her social/governmental position justifies the conclusion that she had to
write occasionaly. Why do you not argue that she did not write with hand but
did it by computer and faxed her correspondence?
Computers did not exist? Argument from silence!

After her work she went home by car.
Cars did not exist? Argument from silence!

She came home where her husband cooked the meal in the microwave oven.
A microwave oven did not exist? Argument from silence!  :-)

For other (and certaiunly more substantive) arguments I refer to the
postings by Liz, Ian and David.



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