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February 22, 2018, 06:07:39 PM
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: Paradox!  ( 16639 )
« : December 08, 2009, 10:45:29 PM From Prateek»


Many years ago, a Law teacher came across a student who was
willing to learn but was unable to pay the fees.
The student struck a deal saying, "I will pay your fee the day
I win my first case in the court". Teacher agreed and proceeded with
the law course. When the course was finished and teacher started
pestering the student to pay up the fee, the student reminded him of
the deal and pushed days.

Fed up with this, the teacher decided to sue the student in the
court of law and both! of them decided to argue for themselves. The
teacher put forward his argument saying: "If I win this case, as per

the court of law, the student has to pay me as the case is about his
non-payment of dues. And if I lose the case, student will still pay me
because he would have won his first case. So either way I will have to
get the money".

Equally brilliant, the student argued back saying: "If I win
the case, as per the court of law, I don't have to pay anything to the
teacher as the case is about my non-payment of dues. And if I lose the
case, I don't have to pay him because I haven't won my first case yet.
So either way, I am not going to pay the teacher anything".
This is one of the greatest paradoxes ever recorded in history

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« #1 : May 24, 2010, 09:27:04 AM From anonymous»

not a paradox...doesnt matter if the kid "wins as per court of law" ... deal was made outside of court...if he wins he pays...no matter what....therefore this is dumb...not a paradox
« #2 : May 24, 2010, 09:28:13 AM From krth6»

i agree...if he wins he pays..no matter what...who is the idiot who posted this...or even made it up
« #3 : June 03, 2010, 11:08:40 AM From Hari12»

If the master didnt respect out-of-court agreement why should the student respect? I dont think its that clear. The court decides what needs to be done and its final.
« #4 : June 15, 2010, 04:48:49 AM From Wes»

Yeah, this isn't a paradox at all. What would happen, provided that it is proven that they made that agreement to begin with is that the student will win the case and then be required to pay his dues, at which point the teacher can sue if he fails to pay at this point. This is assuming both parties tell the truth the whole time and are thoroughly upfront about it. This wouldn't happen in a court of law, but taking everything at face value it is easy to come to my conclusion using logic.

A. Teacher takes student to court.
B. They tell the judge the details of their arrangement.
C. It is made clear that the student hasn't won any cases yet.
D. Because the student hasn't won any cases yet, he is not required to pay the teacher.
E. Student wins cased based on this face.
F. Now that the student has won the case, he is required to pay dues as per their agreement.
G. Now the teacher has a leg to stand on and he can take the student to court again.
H. Presented with these facts, the teacher will win the case.
« #5 : July 15, 2010, 07:52:51 PM From Jacob»

The student would not have to pay if he won because the courts are declaring that he is not liable for repayment. Ethically, one could say he was still bound to the terms of the arrangement, but because the teacher is losing the civil dispute he would have no further recourse to force the student to pay.
« #6 : July 17, 2010, 01:44:20 PM From g»

i agree...if he wins he pays..no matter what...who is the idiot who posted this...or even made it up

It's called the Paradox of the Court or Protagoras' Paradox. It's ancient and enlightening. Consider that in many law systems, the teacher (Protagoras in the story) would not be able to sue again, rather he would have to appeal the decision based on new evidence. Hence, if he managed to get the original decision overturned then the student (Euthalos in the story) would be able to argue he has yet to win a case... you catch my drift, I hope. Anyone can spend hours arguing either side of this: it's a bloody PARADOX, the fact that you can't see past the obvious Disney Channel answer doesn't mean the whole thing is idiotic. It's quite straight forward: to validate a postulate you create a situation that falsifies it. "Ignore this notice", "Do not obey this command" or, in your special case, "Stop being an idiot" are three neat examples. In this case, two standards of success are available for both parties: by court decision or as per the agreement. And the conditions for meeting either are directly opposed such that to obtain one is to falsify the other. As the story doesn't provide a means to negotiate such a contradiction, it lends itself to argument and becomes a paradox.

Why is it people that are ignorant use the word "idiot" so loosely? Think before you write, twice if you want to call someone other than yourself an idiot.
« #7 : April 17, 2011, 09:32:32 PM From A»

Its indeed a famous paradox!
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