Plausible Premise

In a posting over at Gobal Guerrillas there appears this phrase “plausible premise”, like so: “Remember, al Qaeda (and to a lesser extent the US) set this new organizational structure in motion by providing a plausible premise for the war.”

My first thought was that’s a nice way to describe what your doing in a start up. Such enterprises are held together by a plausable premise in spite of unlimited uncertainty and risk. For many years people’s reaction to open source was that they found the entire premise implausible.

This seems like a phrase that would be fun to add to my toolkit. But you can get in trouble adopting a phrase casually. For example while I love the phrase “bias for action” I was discomforted to discover it’s roots. So, I poked around in various venues (google, google print, Amazon Amazon’s SIPS).

Apparently it lacks a strong bloodline. Sometimes it’s used in describe the premise in the plot of a bit fiction: “It’s an all too plausible premise of what would happen if Earth was visited by a superior, technologically, alien race.” It’s used in philosphy to get a premise introduced early and casually. It is very occationally used to describe a marketing process – “the email must create plausible premise that persuades the recipient to divulge personal information”. There is something called plausible reasoning, an alternative to deductive reasoning. But, I don’t see any use of this term plausable premise in that vicinity.

Some enterprising airplane book author should domesticate it and breed up a purebred. Meanwhile, you find the wierdest phrases at Amazon: existential foothold.

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