PT10, Q21, S4- Example of Self-Contradiction in a Argument

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PT10, Q21, S4- Example of Self-Contradiction in a Argument

Postby bizzybone1313 » Sun Dec 16, 2012 10:22 pm

I am having a hard time understanding why the answer D is wrong to this question. This answer choice states the following: contains statements that lead to a self-contradiction. Can someone please explain this to me? The argument appears to do this. I can see why answer E is correct, but I cannot understand why D is wrong.

The first sentence says this: The proper way to plan a scientific project is first to decide its goal and then to plan the best way to accomplish that goal. Later on there is a sentence that says this: When the Cold War ended, the project lost its original purpose, so another purpose was quickly grafted onto the project.

Just because the project lost its original purpose, it doesn't mean its goal wasn't first decided. This appears to be a self contradiction of statements, which is answer choice D.

What am I missing? What would be a real example of self contradiction in a argument? Thanks.

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Re: PT10, Q21, S4- Example of Self-Contradiction in a Argument

Postby bitsy » Sun Dec 16, 2012 10:42 pm

Self-contradiction, in its strictest sense, means that two statements are asserted that can't both be true at the same time (ex: "It is raining, and it is not raining outside right now."). Nothing in the argument is self contradictory. The first sentence describes the proper way (not the only way) to plan scientific projects-- goal first, then method. For the new space station project, the method existed, and then a goal was found. The argument is saying that the way the space station project's new purpose was defined was not in keeping with the proper way. (Assumption: if project not designed using proper way, then should not be undertaken)

Edited for RC fail.

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