Knowledge and Justification

Each question should be answered thoroughly and in detail. Each answer should typically be at least one or two full paragraphs (and longer is fine!)

Write responses to each of the following questions based on the reading. Answer the questions fully and in detail (supporting your answers with reasons).

1) Explain what it means to have a justified belief, in terms of “reasonable doubt”. What sorts of things can create “reasonable doubt”?

2) Explain and discuss the Forer Effect. What implications does this have for the plausibility of astrology?

3) Explain and discuss faith and intuition. What sorts of things might create doubt about beliefs based on faith or intuition? Illustrate with examples.

The next three questions are about arguments. For each of the arguments below, do the following:

A) Formalize the Argument (list it in premise & conclusion form)

B) Identify the kind of argument. If it is Deductive, identify the form (modus ponens, modus tollens, denying the antecedent, affirming the consequent, etc). If it it an inductive argument, identify the kind of inductive argument that it is (analogical induction, or hypothetical induction, etc). If it is neither a deductive argument nor an inductive argument, then just leave this blank.

C) Identify whether the argument commits an informal fallacy, and explain how the fallacy is committed (if there is no informal fallacy, then just write “no fallacy”)

4) It’s not a surprise that Stephen Hawking thinks that there is probably alien life elsewhere in the universe. After all, he is an atheist. And atheists are crazy heathens who have no respect for God or for the fact that life is unique to Earth. So therefore we should ignore his ridiculous ideas.

5): We know that brains are capable of producing conscious thoughts and feelings and emotions. Computers are like brains in that they are incredibly complex information processing devices, so it is likely that computers could produce conscious thoughts and feelings and emotions as well.

6) It’s obvious which news source is the most balanced and fair news source – it’s Fox News. You can tell that they’re fair and balanced because they always say that they’re fair and balanced all the time, and since they’re so fair and balanced they wouldn’t lie about something like that.

All of your information to answer the questions are in the videos and ereader.

The video clip in this lecture (from Penn & Teller’s series on Showtime) contains some adult language – so make sure to watch it without any children or anyone else in the room that you would not want hearing such language.………………………………………………………………………………

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