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Alice does something controversial for a particular reason. Her actions have bad and controversial consequences, but also have an outcome that she did not intend, which nearly everyone finds extremely desirable. Bob argues Alice's actions were justifiable because of that unintended but desirable outcome.

Is there a commonly-accepted name for this sort of argument?

Edit: I think this might be known as the Historian's Fallacy. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historian%27s_fallacy

  • It sounds a little like the Knobe effect, but not exactly. – Tim kinsella Mar 14 '15 at 0:18
  • Hadn't heard of that before. I don't think that's quite it, but it is an interesting experiment. – Fersty Mar 14 '15 at 0:29
  • The historian's fallacy looks good to me in this case. I think you can post an answer to your own question! – Keelan Mar 14 '15 at 8:07

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