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These two attitudes are no more contradictory than those two.

Which of the following interpretations is right (or give me a better one if possible):

  1. Relatively, these two attitudes are not more contradictory than those two; however, it is unknown, from the statement, how contradictory those two are or whether those two are contradictory at all.
  2. Those two attitudes are not contradictory, and these two are not either; it is not about the comparison between the contradiction of these two and that of those two.
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2 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

“A is no more difficult than B” means literally that both are of a similar level of difficulty, and in most cases it also implies that neither is very difficult. So, it's rather 1, but with implications of 2.

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That phrasing 'X is no more Y than Z' often comes in the context of Z already being not very Y, so X is as or maybe less Y than Z. So the implication is -usually- X is not very Y but context may also allow X to be pretty Y but just not as Y as Z. Plug in for variables where needed.

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