We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
"In general, the claim that the absence of something demonstrates the proof of a proposition. An argumentum ex silentio ('argument from silence') is an argument based on the assumption that someone's silence on a matter suggests ('proves' when a logical fallacy) that person's ignorance of the matter or their inability to counterargue validly."
Of course, there are many reasons for silence besides an inability to make a counterpoint, including a simple lack of interest in pursuing a line of discussion or, as I have often found myself doing in debates with Liberals, reverting to silence out of a feeling of futility.
In the blog world, the common expression "crickets chirping" is a cute way of implying an ex silentio argument. Sometimes it's right, sometimes an error.
Unless I'm mistaken (because I really shouldn't be thinking this early in the day), it's an ancient maxim of Anglo-American law that silence implies consent. St. Thomas More made that a lynchpin of his defense: he never said anything against (or even about) the Supremacy Act, so legal tradition dictated that it be presumed he consented to it. It must have been a sound argument (then, at the least) because they had to find somebody to perjure himself before they could convict More.
The concept of agreement or proof of correctness by the other's silence is wrong. A person may simply be ignorant of opposing arguments, not able or permitted to mount a counterargument, or may simply realize silence is the only appropriate response to a fool (liberal whackjob). Maturation brings one to a point of realization that an argument is not correct simply because you haven't done the research to counter it.
I just spent a day with my brother from Idaho. He and his wife are whackjob liberals (and government lawyers) whose response to an argument are ridicule and not letting you speak; there is not point to continuing to attempt to argue: one can only wash his hands and realize their blood is on their own heads when the consequences of their positions finally come to fruition. I spent most of the day in silence.
i've run into this argument in many places among historians. largely they (unlike lawyers, who in response to a direct question, take silence as proof of consent/guilt) take silence to mean indifference. as in my attempt to argue that the year 1000 was apocalyptic, despite the fact that the majority of texts don't mention it. in this case, i was arguing that the silence came from not discussing a taboo topic (somewhat like the NYT and the rest of the MSM not discussing the turn in the al Durah affair), rather than indifference.
generally, when one makes an argument that silence is indicative of taboo, rather than indifference, there is evidence of the taboo that one can rely on.