Chapter 146: Learning Predicate Logic with Slim Thug

Outward appearances aside, Houston rapper Slim Thug and I have somewhat of a shared history. We both hail from the great state of Texas. We both know our way around the section in the club nominally reserved for Very Important Persons. And, though ours may occasionally be rough exteriors for the purposes of intimidating ‘haters’, we both have a special fondness for speaking deliberately.

SlimThug

Slim Thug lays it out for us on his 2005 song ‘Like A Boss‘:

I call shots – like a boss
Stack knots – like a boss
Cop drops – like a boss
On top – like a boss
Paid Tha Cost – like Tha Bo$$
When I floss – like a boss
Big house – like a boss
Rep the North – like a boss
Who the boss nigga?! Who the motherfucking boss?!
Who the boss nigga?! Who the motherfucking boss?!
Who the boss nigga?! Who the motherfucking boss?!
Who the boss nigga?! You see the motherfucking boss!!

Much in the same way I’m concerned about my advancement in my career of choice, Mr Thug appears concerned with establishing or qualifying his position as ‘The Boss’. In defense of his presumed desire to be a boss, he delineates his list of qualifications, such as the facts that he Calls Shots, Stacks Knots, Drops Cops (I assume that he caused the Cop to Drop), is On Top, etc. This allows us to determine that a boss, any boss, would call shots, stack knots, etc. We can represent these formally using First Order Logic as follows:

In English, this means that for every person, if they’re a boss, then they necessarily call shots, stack knots, etc. However, it is not the case that Slim is known to be the boss, merely that Mr Thug is known to call shots, stack knots, drop cops and to be on top. Unfortunately for Mr Thug, the definition of the material conditional tells us that calling shots and stacking knots are necessary but not sufficient conditions to be considered the boss.

That is, if you don’t call shots or stack knots, etc, then you’re not a boss. Mr Thug knows he’s not by logical definition the boss, but he also knows that he’s not logically precluded from being the boss either. This situation appears to present him with some moderate apprehension (“Who the motherfucking boss?!”). Finally, Mr Thug reminds us that this hypothetical boss is no myth; rather, he exists, and more specifically, I can see him (“You see the motherfucking boss!!”). In English, this can be translated as saying that there exists at least one person with the quality of being a boss. Again, using First Order Logic:

Is Slim Thug the boss? Am I the boss? In Mr Thug’s case, we may never know for sure. Unfortunately, due to the fact that I have never actually killed a police officer, I know that I am, for the time being (per the first equation above), logically precluded from being The Boss.

Previous in the series: Learning Mathematics with R. Kelly

6 Replies to “Chapter 146: Learning Predicate Logic with Slim Thug”

  1. Having been YOUR boss for a very long time, I was curious as to how I was being defined and found Mr. Thug and I have very little in common. I would definitely insert your assertions somewhere in your law school apps, though.

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