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The Formal Nature of Syllogistic Argument

The validity or invalidity of syllogism depends exclusively upon its form. Regardless of the subject matter a syllogism (with contingent propositions) is a valid argument if it follows the moods and its figures or it has form. This makes a valid syllogism a formally valid argument.
All form AAA-1 are valid syllogism: All M is P. All S is M. vAll S is P.
1. All Greeks are humans. All Athenians are Greeks. Therefore all Athenians are humans 2. All sodium salts are water-soluble substances. All soaps are sodium salts. Therefore all soaps are water-soluble substances.

In other words, in syllogisms of this and other valid forms, if the premisses are true, then the conclusion must also be true. The conclusion could be false only if one or both premisses were false. Validity deals only with form. It has nothing to do with content. Arguments, therefore, may be logically valid, yet absolutely nonsensical. This implies that if a given syllogism is valid, any other syllogism of the same form will also be valid. And if a syllogism is invalid, any other of the same form will also be invalid. Conversely, any argument in an invalid syllogistic form is invalid, even if both its premisses and its conclusion happen to be true. A syllogistic form is invalid if it is possible to construct an argument in that form with true premisses and a false conclusion.

Thus a powerful way to refute an argument in an invalid form is to counter it with an analogous argument oran argument in the same formwith obviously true premisses and an obviously false conclusion.
Logical Analogy:
1. All liberals are proponents of national health insurance. Some members of the administration are proponents of national health insurance. Therefore some members of the administration are liberals. 2. All lawyers are intelligent. Some undergrads are intelligent. Therefore some undergrads are lawyers.

UNITED STATES VS. LUZON, G.R. No. 1332, March 29, 1905 The defendant-appellant was found guilty of illegal detention but instead of imposing the penalty for illegal detention, what the judge imposed was the penalty for homicide because of a rule in the old Penal Code, which regards the refusal of the accused to testify about the whereabouts of the person he abducted and the aggravation of the crime to homicide if he is found guilty. It was then argued that the defendant cannot be required to give proof that may extenuate or aggravate the punishment and he has the right to remain silent and this cannot be used to presume his guilt. Apparently, a new rules of procedure was passed, it proved that the silence of the accused in illegal detention cases as to the whereabouts of his victim will no longer cause the aggravation of his penalty if found guilty. This is to protect the accuseds right to remain silent. The accused has a perfect right to remain silent and his silence cannot be used as a presumption of his guilt. Therefore, the penalty may not be increased for his failure to furnish proof because under the present system the court cannot require the defendant to testify, because the law exempts him from so doing; therefore the penalty may not be increased for his failure to furnish proof. The decision of the lower court was reversed.