The Inextricable Link Between Conditionals and Logical Consequence


There is a profound, but frequently ignored relationship between logical consequence (formal implication) and material implication. The first repeats the patterns of the latter, but with a wider modal reach. It is argued that this kinship between formal and material implication simply means that they express the same kind of implication, but differ in scope. Formal implication is unrestricted material implication. This apparently innocuous observation has some significant corollaries: (1) conditionals are not connectives, but arguments; (2) the traditional examples of valid argumentative forms are metalogical principles that express the properties of logical consequence; (3) formal logic is not a useful guide to detect valid arguments in the real world; (4) it is incoherent to propose alternatives to the material implication while accepting the classical properties of formal implication; (5) some of the counter-examples to classical argumentative forms and known conditional puzzles are unsound.

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