Posted by Bob on November 16, 2000
In Reply to: Beg the question posted by john on November 16, 2000
: The one meaning I find in the list is far different from whatI have been told this phrase means. Does anyone know another definition?
I got this from Brewer's:
Begging the Question: Assuming a proposition which, in reality, involves the conclusion. Thus, to say
that parallel lines will never meet because they are parallel, is simply to assume as a fact the very thing you profess to prove. The phrase is a translation of the Latin term, petitio principii, and was first used by Aristotle.
Listening to the spin doctors on TV defining what is a fair/legal/conclusive election, you see (just a wee bit of) begging the question in the questions they pose.