QUESTION TYPE: Flawed Parallel Reasoning
CONCLUSION: The defendant maliciously caused harm.
REASONING: Malice is intent to cause harm. The defendant intended to put the snow on the sidewalk.
ANALYSIS: The lawyer is confused. Sure, the defendant had intent: the intent to move snow. But the lawyer hasn’t shown the defendant meant to hurt anybody.
We generally only have intent for the things we mean to do, or for anything that we’re sure will happen as a result of our actions. If the defendant didn’t know that the snow would hurt the plaintiff then we can hardly blame the defendant.
- This is a good argument.
- CORRECT. This is a bad argument and it parallels the stimulus. Bruce wanted to eat mincemeat pie. The fact that he wanted to eat mincemeat pie didn’t mean that Bruce wanted to eat poison…he didn’t know it was there!
- This is a good argument, assuming that we denigrate someone if we denigrate their wine choices.
- This is a bad argument. The correct conclusion would have been “unbeknownst to her she has lunch with someone generally thought to be an industrial spy.” But this doesn’t parallel the flaw about intent.
- This is a good argument. The car was a stolen car even if Edwina didn’t know.
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