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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:18 PM   #1
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Illustrated rhetorical fallacies

We are all internet people to varying degree on this board, and to internet people, especially on this sub-forum, arguments are bound to happen. There is a load of dishonest fallacies those inclined to can use, so I figure members who frequent P&CE might find this interesting.

They are also very pedagogically illustrated


Rhetorical fallacies.




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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:35 PM   #2
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Great link, this kind of stuff needs to be kept in the back of one's head during any kind of rational discourse. I wish they would teach this kind of stuff earlier on in schools. At least in the area I've lived in, this kind of stuff isn't taught until first year university, in a course that is rarely taken anyways (critical thinking). Last term, I took it, and it was a class of roughly 100, with that class being the only section of the term. In a university with 26000 undergraduates...
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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:43 PM   #3
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^I would love to take such a course (I have learned most of the stuff in the link myself though), might have to check if my university offers courses in logic or something similar...




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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:46 PM   #4
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If your university has a philosophy department, it should definitely have logic, if not some other related courses. I'm taking an intro to formal logic next term, so I'm stoked.

Yeah I learned a majority of the critical thinking stuff outside of that course, but it did teach me a lot, and gave me the tools to see through the bullshit a lot easier
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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:55 PM   #5
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We've got everything man, largest university in Scandinavia


You seem to be interested in this stuff, any chance you are involved with the skeptics movement?




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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:56 PM   #6
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Excellent post and admittedly I've done a few of these in the past. Would it be considered a fallacy in and of itself to show this link to someone that is making one of these kinds of arguments?


"Statement 1: Animals of two different species (not to mention entirely different orders) is now considered natural.
Statement 2: Man is an animal.
Statement 3: I'm booking a flight to Antarctica.
Statement 4: None of your damn business why." -Xaios
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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:57 PM   #7
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This is great! Most people are guilty of using these in their arguments, even myself, and it's nice to see them laid out in a pretty simple way so that most everyone can understand them.
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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:58 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by ghstofperdition View Post
Excellent post and admittedly I've done a few of these in the past. Would it be considered a fallacy in and of itself to show this link to someone that is making one of these kinds of arguments?
A weird appeal to authority maybe?




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Unread 03-31-2012, 05:59 PM   #9
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This is great! Most people are guilty of using these in their arguments, even myself, and it's nice to see them laid out in a pretty simple way so that most everyone can understand them.
Agreed, some of these are pretty abstract, so having examples really help.




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Unread 03-31-2012, 06:04 PM   #10
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It's not an appeal to authority to show how an argument doesn't actually address the matter at hand. Even if these fallacies are common enough to have a name, using a name for one, or explaining how one has gone wrong, doesn't rely upon any appeal to authority.

Since any claim which doesn't actually address a matter at hand can be shown to not affect the truth of that matter, showing how it doesn't address the matter doesn't rely upon any authority.

Ironic fallacy about calling out fallacies is ironic.
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If you don't care enough to research your own question, why should anyone else care more?

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Unread 03-31-2012, 06:06 PM   #11
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We've got everything man, largest university in Scandinavia
I want to live in Sweden

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You seem to be interested in this stuff, any chance you are involved with the skeptics movement?
Alas, I'm not familiar with such a thing. Got any links or something to read, because Google isn't giving me anything definite about such a movement.
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Unread 03-31-2012, 06:35 PM   #12
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It's been mentioned, but I'll just say this to everyone...

If you can (or haven't already...), take a Logic class.

It was awesome.
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Unread 03-31-2012, 06:42 PM   #13
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I want to live in Sweden
Oldest as well, although it was mainly built so we could have a university before the danes (1477)


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Alas, I'm not familiar with such a thing. Got any links or something to read, because Google isn't giving me anything definite about such a movement.
It's mainly a fancy word for organized scientific skeptics, among the more famous are Penn and Teller, Carl Sagan, James Randi, Michael Shermer, and PZ Myers. A common event almost all over the world is "Skeptics in the pub", where we go out, drink and discuss pseudo-science etc.

There are usually groups in most larger cities if you are interested to know more, there are also a number of podcasts about skeptisism.
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Unread 03-31-2012, 09:01 PM   #14
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Cool stuff. I knew what skepticism was, but I'll definitely have to check it out a bit more in depth and maybe grab some podcasts. The skeptics in the pub bit sounds interesting. At first I wasn't too convinced by it, but now it's more of a "well, why the .... not". Thanks for the info
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Unread 04-01-2012, 03:05 AM   #15
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I approve of this. Many of these are pet peeves of mine, like when shampoo ads say that they contain natural ingredients. I always think that many kinds of acid occur naturally, but they probably won't be very good for your hair. Also the relativist fallacy was the bane of my existence my in senior english classes. They kept on talking about reality as though it's subjective, when IT'S ....ING NOT! YOU CAN DISCOVER UNIVERSAL TRUTHS IF YOU STUDY MATHS OR SCIENCE, MRS DAVIS! Sorry, but explaining the logical fallacies in the claims of my english teacher was a frustrating, fruitless, and thankless task. I'm angry again just remembering it.

However, did anyone else find it weird that the appeal to ignorance example was "Nobody has proved to me there is a god. Therefore there is no god." It looks a bit like a shifting of the burden of proof, which they have an example of further down the page. I know that it isn't really, but it looks that way. If it said that the statement "Nobody has proved to me there is a god. Therefore there is no god." is false, and therefore there is a god, it would certainly be a burden of proof issue. I guess they're advocating the withholdment of judgement until definitive proof is given, which can lead to the statement "Nobody has proved to me there is a god. Therefore there is nothing to lead me to believe there is a god.", which some would consider to mean the same as the statement "Nobody has proved to me there is a god. Therefore there is no god." In fact, I thought that if you just added a qualifying word or phrase to a couple of the examples of fallacies they would be perfectly fine statements. I guess that whoever wrote this must have been quite the pedant. (Ironic ad hominem ftw.) This probably doesn't matter, though.

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Oldest as well
Nice appeal to authority
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Unread 04-01-2012, 07:38 AM   #16
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Cool stuff. I knew what skepticism was, but I'll definitely have to check it out a bit more in depth and maybe grab some podcasts. The skeptics in the pub bit sounds interesting. At first I wasn't too convinced by it, but now it's more of a "well, why the .... not". Thanks for the info
I think it was either scottish or canadian skeptics who came up with the concept of skeptics in the pub...
Wel,, anyway, you're welcome. I have enjoyed consorting with skeptics very much, they are usually very nice people

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I approve of this. Many of these are pet peeves of mine, like when shampoo ads say that they contain natural ingredients. I always think that many kinds of acid occur naturally but they probably won't be very good for your hair.
Arsenic is also very natural, as is mercury

Quote:
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However, did anyone else find it weird that the appeal to ignorance example was "Nobody has proved to me there is a god. Therefore there is no god." It looks a bit like a shifting of the burden of proof, which they have an example of further down the page. I know that it isn't really, but it looks that way. If it said that the statement "Nobody has proved to me there is a god. Therefore there is no god." is false, and therefore there is a god, it would certainly be a burden of proof issue. I guess they're advocating the withholdment of judgement until definitive proof is given, which can lead to the statement "Nobody has proved to me there is a god. Therefore there is nothing to lead me to believe there is a god.", which some would consider to mean the same as the statement "Nobody has proved to me there is a god. Therefore there is no god." In fact, I thought that if you just added a qualifying word or phrase to a couple of the examples of fallacies they would be perfectly fine statements. I guess that whoever wrote this must have been quite the pedant. (Ironic ad hominem ftw.) This probably doesn't matter, though.
You are absolutely correct, claiming that there is no god subjects you to the same burden of proof as someone who claims there is a god.

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Nice appeal to authority
Did I say it was good because it was old?




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Unread 04-01-2012, 07:53 AM   #17
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^ I originally typed arsenic, but I don't know what it would do to hair (it's probably of little consequence either way) so I changed it to acid.

Also, when these are taken together, it seems like you're at least implying that the oldest is the best.

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We've got everything man, largest university in Scandinavia
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Oldest as well
But I'm just being cheeky now.
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Unread 04-01-2012, 08:05 AM   #18
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^ I originally typed arsenic, but I don't know what it would do to hair (it's probably of little consequence either way) so I changed it to acid.
Arsenic poisoning can cause hair loss, at least according to wiki...
But I wager acid is even more no good for hair

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Also, when these are taken together, it seems like you're at least implying that the oldest is the best.
Impying eh?

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But I'm just being cheeky now.
I am not sure I like your tone young man




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Unread 04-01-2012, 11:28 AM   #19
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The Appeal to Novelty just reminded me of the How I met your Mother thing where Barney goes on about how new is always better and Ted keeps showing him how he's wrong

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I approve of this. Many of these are pet peeves of mine, like when shampoo ads say that they contain natural ingredients. I always think that many kinds of acid occur naturally, but they probably won't be very good for your hair. Also the relativist fallacy was the bane of my existence my in senior english classes. They kept on talking about reality as though it's subjective, when IT'S ....ING NOT! YOU CAN DISCOVER UNIVERSAL TRUTHS IF YOU STUDY MATHS OR SCIENCE, MRS DAVIS! Sorry, but explaining the logical fallacies in the claims of my english teacher was a frustrating, fruitless, and thankless task. I'm angry again just remembering it.

The perfect response to that kind of relativism I feel is to show them the circular nature of their own pluralist argument.

It tends to go like this.

You: So you believe that reality and truth are subjective?
Them: Yes.
You: So there is no singular truth for anything?
Them: Yes.
You: You're sure you believe this?
Them: Yes.
You: So the truth is, there is no singular truth? That's a self cancelling argument isn't it?
Them: Yes... wait no... wait... I mean... wait... NO YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND!


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Unread 04-01-2012, 11:37 AM   #20
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Quote:
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It tends to go like this.

You: So you believe that reality and truth are subjective?
Them: Yes.
You: So there is no singular truth for anything?
Them: Yes.
You: You're sure you believe this?
Them: Yes.
You: So the truth is, there is no singular truth? That's a self cancelling argument isn't it?
Them: Yes... wait no... wait... I mean... wait... NO YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND!

Damn humanities...

Actually every humanist I have met have not understood the concept of absolute truth, this is not prejudice, but actually fact, I have not met a single one who could understand this. They have always gone "Well, that's your opinion, it might be true for somebody else.."

Bullshit. There are absolute truths, and my mother, for example, is terrible at understanding this fact. This was the source of some very heated discussions when I still lived at my parents' house.




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Unread 04-01-2012, 02:10 PM   #21
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Although I already have a somewhat well trained ear for logical fallacies, I still want to memorize this list for every time my co-workers' Ron Pauling husband tries to educate me about the New World Order and the progress of Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio's birth certificate investigation.

Nice find.

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Unread 04-01-2012, 02:23 PM   #22
Frets? What frets?
 
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I like that the "Ad Hoc Rescue" category uses a Monty Python quote as the example.

Otherwise, good stuff, Captain. The logic is infallible.

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Unread 04-01-2012, 09:57 PM   #23
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^ Damn, beat me to it!
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Unread 04-02-2012, 07:17 PM   #24
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Ther is an excellent documentary released free on youtube called Here Be Dragons (anyone else get vibes of Terry Pratchett?), and it's about logical fallacies and critical thinking, I recommend anyone interested to check it out

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Unread 04-05-2012, 01:35 PM   #25
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I don't think I saw a reductio ad hitlerum anywhere in there. This list is incomplete. Therefore Hitler, I lose.
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