Logical fallacies

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Roughsoul1991

Senior Member
Sep 17, 2016
6,291
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#1
A logical fallacy is “a mistake in reasoning that renders an argument invalid, unsound, weak, or ineffective.”

By memorizing these mistakes we can be better equipped with addressing any response, media reports, social media memes and really any conversation.

The resource below is really a good simple explanation of the typical logical fallacies.

I would also like to add one called the fallacy of presumption which also fails to provide adequate reason for believing the truth of the individuals conclusions. In these instances, however, the erroneous reasoning results from an implicit supposition of some further proposition whose truth is uncertain or implausible.

There are any number of different types of arguments that fall into the category of fallacy of presumption, but some of the more common ones include false dilemma, complex questions, arguments from ignorance, and circular reasoning.


https://www.summit.org/resources/reflect/logical-fallacies/

A good practice when first learning to spot these fallacies is with any online response, read the response then have you a simple guide like the one above. Go through the response and check to see if their logic is reasonable. If not then politely respond by asking a question that shows the faulty logic. The question reveals the error.

This practice will eventually have you seeing the fallacies in any conversation online or in life.

Learning to lead a conversation by using the others statements is a powerful tool. Just as Jesus answered most questions with a question that usually showed the flaws, ignorance or malice behind the questions of the opposition.

Never drawing assumptions, try to understand their point of view to fully see the logic behind their beliefs. Try to listen and by asking questions you direct the conversation. The burden of proof is on them to explain due to they was the one who said your belief was wrong. Now they must explain why yours is wrong and what belief better explains the concept.

Usually most people have not thought deeply enough or researched the beliefs they hold. And someone studied in seeing logical fallacies can easily shake the individual's foundation that possibly could lead them to abandon the weak belief and adopt yours ( they probably wont admit it to you ) or atleast start down the right road towards truth.
 

CharliRenee

Member
Staff member
Nov 4, 2014
6,199
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#2
I appreciate the link added. I am enjoying learning this stuff. However, I struggle understanding the straw man fallacy. I read ppl here often calling arguements out for this, but fail to comprehend exactly what it is or how they identify it.

The Ad hominem fallacy is something I also see all the time. I do understand that one all too well...:)
 

posthuman

Senior Member
Jul 31, 2013
30,834
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#3
I struggle understanding the straw man fallacy. I read ppl here often calling arguements out for this, but fail to comprehend exactly what it is or how they identify it.
it's when, instead of discussing what someone has actually said, you make up something absurd, claim they have said it, and then argue against that absurd thing, as though debunking the absurd argument makes the actual argument invalid.

one super-common example is this:
  • Joe says having been found in Christ, he is not under the law of Moses.
  • Bob believes the Christian is under the law of Moses, and argues to Joe that 'workers of lawlessness' will not enter the kingdom of God, and accuses Joe of trying to justify living in sin.
    • Joe never said he was lawless.
    • Bob has created a strawman - 'whoever is not under Moses is lawless' - and Bob is arguing against this imaginary person.
    • Bob falsely claims that Joe is talking about living in sin, and tries to change the conversation from 'are we under Moses' to 'is the Christian supposed to continue to live in sin' --- the real argument, over whether believers are under Moses, is an argument Bob cannot win, so he creates a 'strawman argument' that he can win. Bob's logic:
      • you cannot continue loving and living in sin and be a Christian
      • therefore the Christian is under Moses
    • the flaw in Bob's logic is that not being under Moses is not equivalent to loving wickedness and living in sin.
      • Joe never said he loves sin.
      • Joe never said he wants to live in wickedness.
      • the 'strawman' says those things, but the strawman is imaginary; no one in the conversation actually says or believes the things Bob is arguing about.
      • Bob has ducked the real topic, which he can't argue, and tried to divert the discussion to something else, that he can.

basically, a strawman is an imaginary person making an imaginary argument.
it's a deceitful, diversionary tactic one uses when they can't win the real argument with the real person.
 

CharliRenee

Member
Staff member
Nov 4, 2014
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#5
Holy moly 146 types of fallacies listed. It would be useful to be given random examples and then try and figure out which fallacy is being used. Dino, soooo much info. I would like then to be given concise information as to how the properly deduced fallacy was achieved. Thanks for the resources.
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
36,129
13,452
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#6
Holy moly 146 types of fallacies listed. It would be useful to be given random examples and then try and figure out which fallacy is being used. Dino, soooo much info. I would like then to be given concise information as to how the properly deduced fallacy was achieved. Thanks for the resources.
The first link does give examples, in fact, most lists I have seen over the years give some type of example, though memorizing the names/types of 146 fallacies seems onerous. I sure ain't gonna memorize all that :giggle: The most common fallacy I see is people contradicting themselves.
 

Dino246

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2015
17,506
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#7
Charlie and Magenta,
There's no need to memorize all of them. Only about ten are common enough that it's worth knowing them well. If you've read through the others, you'll know enough to avoid employing them. :)
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
36,129
13,452
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#8
Charlie and Magenta,
There's no need to memorize all of them. Only about ten are common enough that it's worth knowing them well. If you've read through the others, you'll know enough to avoid employing them. :)
The most common error I see people making is contradicting themselves, and that shifting sand is pretty easy to spot :D
 

CharliRenee

Member
Staff member
Nov 4, 2014
6,199
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#9
I saw the examples...what I would like is a way to practice being able to identify which is used. I could go around here and make guesses, but they would not be educated ones. Also, I would not have anyway of knowing if I was correct, well unless it was blatantly obvious.

Does that ^ make sense?
 
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7seasrekeyed

Guest
#10
I'm pretty sure this forum is the birthplace of logical fallacies

 
7

7seasrekeyed

Guest
#11
I like to make people laugh and I thoroughly enjoy it myself

you can say alot with humor that could go over offensive otherwise ;)
 

CharliRenee

Member
Staff member
Nov 4, 2014
6,199
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#12
True and finding humor is logical to me, in most things, lol


Rut roh, now see did I make an illogical statement? Oh man, this old gal has so much to learn. Another good "reason" for humor...it keeps one from thinking tooooo much, lol.
 
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7seasrekeyed

Guest
#13
True and finding humor is logical to me, in most things, lol


Rut roh, now see did I make an illogical statement? Oh man, this old gal has so much to learn. Another good "reason" for humor...it keeps one from thinking tooooo much, lol.
at some point, you just gotta laugh...or quit

humor is great but I don't like making fun at people

although I have done it :(
 

Yahshua

Senior Member
Sep 22, 2013
2,111
447
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#14
I saw the examples...what I would like is a way to practice being able to identify which is used. I could go around here and make guesses, but they would not be educated ones. Also, I would not have anyway of knowing if I was correct, well unless it was blatantly obvious.

Does that ^ make sense?
I think intuitively you know when something's off even if you don't know the official term for it.

Like, if you're compelled to respond and say "I didn't say that!" Or "I didn't mean that!" Then that's a signal from your mind that you're being strawmanned.

Sometimes it could be they're just misunderstanding you so give them a chance to confirm if that's the case or if they are putting words in your mouth. Usually they have no problem letting you know which is the case.

Ad hominem means "to the person" (I think?). Instead of focusing on the issue they direct it at your qualifications or credibility to even make the argument.

These feel like personal attacks that are irrelevant to the point you made.

So the core fallacies that are most often experienced can be intuitively felt.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
10,668
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#15
Is the strawman kinda the same as the michelin man...?
 

Dino246

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2015
17,506
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#18
I saw the examples...what I would like is a way to practice being able to identify which is used. I could go around here and make guesses, but they would not be educated ones. Also, I would not have anyway of knowing if I was correct, well unless it was blatantly obvious.

Does that ^ make sense?
If you see what you think is a fallacy, shoot me a PM with the details and I'll take a look. Although I don't have formal training, I have learned to recognize several of them.
 

CharliRenee

Member
Staff member
Nov 4, 2014
6,199
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#19
If you see what you think is a fallacy, shoot me a PM with the details and I'll take a look. Although I don't have formal training, I have learned to recognize several of them.
Thank you...I will try not to abuse that privilege with too many questions. I recently overextended myself with another, Haha.

Balance woman, said myself. Take it slowly as not to bog down others or self.