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Messages - gzl

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41
Studying for the LSAT / Re: Feb 1999 LSAT, second test in Superprep
« on: May 10, 2009, 12:47:42 AM »
Superprep's explanation of the second game on the Feb 1999 LSAT doesn't make sense to me.  Superprep says that if firs are not in the park, then Laurels and Oaks must be in the park.  The condition is "if it is not the case that the park contains both laurels and oaks, then it contains firs and spruces."  Wouldn't the contrapositive be if not spruces or firs then laurels or oaks?

Not quite, with the contrapositive.  There are a coupla logically equivalent ways to read the first part of the condition.  It's not saying "if not laurels and not oaks then..." It's saying "if not both"  in other words: if there are not laurels OR not oaks, then...

It's a negation of the "and" set of facts rpresented. two ways to represent that: (.= "and", ^= "or")
-(L.O)

-L^-O

(instead of "-L.-O", the negation of which is what you have above, laurels or oaks)

the negation of both of those statements would be: L.O

the second part of the conditional is more straight forward:

F.S

whose negation is: -F^-S (or -(F.S))

the contrapositive for the whole would then be:

-F^-S => L.O

If there are not Firs or not Spruces in the park, then there are Laurels and Oaks in the park.

Hope that helped rather than being more confusing.




42
Studying for the LSAT / Re: What about the writing portion?
« on: May 07, 2009, 02:28:43 AM »
julie just enjoy interacting with self-important preppy blowhards such as yourself.  that way, julie not feel quite so badly about oh-so-male private part cheney.

hey, please tell julie about your video game collection!

Personally, I find you much more entertaining when your diction and grammar remains in character, as opposed to some of the above.  Just a side note.  Carry on.

43



k.s.m was not a gutshot...they knew they had the hand...and he is the reason that this thing will not get prosecuted...

...lives were saved.


and if they tortured k.s.m...so what.

This thing will not get prosecuted because no one in the positon to do anything has the stomach for the divisiveness of the issue.  Which is a shame.  Divisiveness be damned, confronting these kind of issues and holding our government and ourselves  to account for our actions determines whether we're a nation of laws or a nation of gawdknowswhat.

We've prosecuted others in the past for torture, and torture of this type specifically.  I don't care about k.s.m..  I care about whether our government tortured him.  When a government ceases to be guided by its own laws, we cease to have officials and have, instead, thugs running a fundamentally lawless organization.

45
I think it's hard to argue for any kind of "principles" or "dignity" when discussing torture. Our country trains a large group of people to kill others because they are from another country. That's what war is. We blow people up, stab them, shoot them, drop bombs on them, etc. To me, using harsh interrogation techniques is just a nasty side note of this unfortunate reality. It's hard to see the logic in thinking its ok to disembowel somebody on the battlefield, but it's not ok to hold a wet towel on their face. It's all equally horrible.

No, it isn't all equally horrible, actually.  For several reasons.

But, perhaps the most important consideration to make is that your characterization of the armed forces is incorrect.  Specifically, the part about killing "because they are from another country."  I think the worst case phrase should be "interests contrary to the United States."  

Furthermore, at least on the battlefield, you have engaged bilaterally.  Both sides are equally capable of disemboweling the other.  Torture is pure unilateral action.

I would agree, and would also just emphasize what S.B. Anthony spoke of.  Even in war there are rules of engagement, legal steps taken before we enter into war (often ignored, unfortunately) etc.  For example, there are prosecutable offenses that can happen even during engagement.  Torture and extra-legal detention is a contradiction of our own legal principles.  As such, they are against state interest by definition, as they contradict the continued existence of the state as a nation of laws.

47
   I will be finishing up my last two years of undergrad work next fall. Now the time to choose a major and minor have come up. I will be majoring is psychology but I am wondering what minor I should choose.

   My first choice is Criminal justice, I feel that this might help me if I decide to do prosecutorial work and will probably increase my GPA. But, I have heard that Anything that I learn in Criminal Justice I will learn in law school and it won't help me score high on my LSAT.

   The second choice is philosophy. This will help me in logical reasoning benefiting my LSAT score, but could lower my GPA.

So... What would be the most beneficial choice:  Criminal Justice or Philosophy ?   


http://www.ivc.edu/econ/pages/lsatscores.aspx

48
I'm not flaming.  I don't see the issue with detention and torture, so long as it's done in rational state interest, and I don't see why it wouldn't be.  I realize that these aren't the greatest ways to extract information, but I assume that state actors are smart, and they know better than me when it's necessary to detain someone without habeas corpus.

I went to an ACLU talk today and the former Reinhardt clerk seemed to presume that "torture is bad, hence torture must be stopped," but I didn't have the guts to ask him why.


"Rational State interest" is a murky phrase, at best.  In the case of the United States, any short-term state interest is out-weighed, imao,  by the fact that we cease to be a state defined by laws and commitment to the rule of law when we engage in torture and extra-legal detention.  The effectiveness of torture isn't even really an issue in my view.  Even at 100% effectiveness, torture contradicts our own laws and the principles that they strive to embody, and we cease to be the U.S. when we engage in it.

49
   I will be finishing up my last two years of undergrad work next fall. Now the time to choose a major and minor have come up. I will be majoring is psychology but I am wondering what minor I should choose.

   My first choice is Criminal justice, I feel that this might help me if I decide to do prosecutorial work and will probably increase my GPA. But, I have heard that Anything that I learn in Criminal Justice I will learn in law school and it won't help me score high on my LSAT.

   The second choice is philosophy. This will help me in logical reasoning benefiting my LSAT score, but could lower my GPA.

So... What would be the most beneficial choice:  Criminal Justice or Philosophy ?   


Crim Jus. won't do much good, to be honest.  I don't know where I saw the stats, but there was a breakdown somewhere on average LSAT scores by major, the top three were Economics, Philosophy and Physics (poli sci and cj were actually low on the breakdown).  I was a philosophy major, and the training in reasoning/critical thinking/counting angels on the head of a pin   was of huge benefit on the LSAT.

50
Studying for the LSAT / Re: What about the writing portion?
« on: May 04, 2009, 01:10:33 PM »
I have a couple questions about the writing portion of the LSAT.  I realize it is "unscored", which from what I can tell means it doesn't factor into your numerical score, but it gets evaluated in some way, right?  Maybe not, I just don't know.  Do adcomms have access to it, or LSAC's evaluation thereof?  All the prep material I read basically said don't worry about it, but since I've been out of school so long, I'm thinking I really need to retrain myself in writing an essay.

Admissions departments do have access to the LSAT essay.  I have yet to hear of even one case though where it was a factor one way or another.  Retraining yourself to write an essay may be a good idea, but I'd put much more effort into the personal statement than into worrying about the LSAT essay. If you're ever in a position that an essay is going to make a difference between yourself and another candidate, the personal statement is going to make a much larger difference than some lame essay about whether a retirement community should choose trip a or trip b for their geriatric get-away.

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