[ExI] Doubts and gas chambers

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Mon Oct 8 12:55:08 UTC 2007

On 10/8/07, Randall Randall wrote:
> I think you misunderstand that phrase.  As usually
> used, "beyond a reasonable doubt" means *less* than
> a reasonable doubt, not more than.

No. I think you've got that wrong.
"beyond a reasonable doubt" means that you're going to jail.
See: <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burden_of_proof>

The standard of proof is the level of proof required in a legal action
to discharge the burden of proof, ie convince the court that a given
proposition is true. The degree of proof required depends on the
circumstances of the proposition. Typically, most countries have two
levels of proof: the balance of probabilities (BOP), called the
preponderance of evidence in the U.S., (which is the lowest level,
generally thought to be greater than 50%, although numeric
approximations are controversial) and beyond a reasonable doubt (which
is the highest level, but defies numeric approximation). In addition
to these, the U.S. introduced a third standard called clear and
convincing evidence, (which is the medium level of proof).

In colloquial language you can also say "his guilt was established
beyond a shadow of a doubt" when he is caught dead to rights.

I think the problem is that English is not Stefano's first language.
Stefano wrote (rather confusingly) "to discuss the circumstantial
evidence that encourages me to think that a more than reasonable doubt
What he could have said was "to discuss the circumstantial evidence
that encourages me to think that it is more than reasonable to doubt
the official version".


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