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For the benefit of all at Speakeasy may I refer you to the

by Ziks511 / May 24, 2006 3:29 AM PDT

Nizkor Project on Fallacies in Arguments.
http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/

The site is primarily about the Holocaust, but it has the best rundown of Fallacious Arguments that I've seen, even better than the Logic text I was required to study in order to get an MA in History. You have to try to put together a logical argument when writing a History paper, and one avoiding obvious pitfalls. Unfortunately political discussions abound with these pitfalls. A lot of them are in Latin and date from Roman jurisprudence or Medieval rediscovery of Roman jurisprudence and the study thereof, which was carried out in Latin.
Fallacies
Argumentum ad Hominem. Your argument is not valid because you are a despicable person, or are not worth listening to. There's a lot of this one floating around here.

Argumentum ad hominem tu quoque. Your argument is invalid because you do something that is inconsistent with the argument. Like a smoker advocating non-smoking. Note, it is a fallacy to assert that a smoker's opinion on not smoking is invalid because he smokes.

Appeal to Authority, or Argumentum ad Verecundiam.
It must be true because this or that authority says its true. Hence WMDs. or the use of FoxNews, NewsMax or any of the other tame news sources which follow the Republican, or Administration line.

Appeal to Belief, or to Popularity, or Common Wisdom.
The Bible says ... 85% of the people support the President ... Everybody knows that ... The President's approval rating has fallen to 31% (he still could be right and his opposition wrong)

Appeal to Common Practice.
Everybody cheats a bit on their taxes so ...

Appeal to consequences of a Belief.
The consequences of a belief have no bearing on whether the belief is true or false. "I believe X is true because accepting that X is true has positive consequences." There are about 6 more variations on this belief.

Appeal to emotion. Just look at any political convention and the bounce the party gets after it in the polls. If you vote for me I'll cut your taxes, just because most of the money goes to the top one percent is no reason not to feel happy about it.

Appeal to fear. The argument for the development of the Department of Homeland Security. If we don't do this they will overwhelm us (and just where are those millions of terrorists coming to overwhelm us).

There are also Appeals to Flattery, Novelty, Pity, Popularity, Ridicule, Spite, and Tradition

There is also the Bandwagon effect, which is why reporting is curtailed until the polls are closed in California.

Begging the Question. the premises include the claim that the conclusion is true, or (directly or indirectly) assume that the conclusion is true.

Use of a Biased Sample. Like asking an opinion of something on Speakeasy, the opinion will reflect a conservative bias.

Another common one here, Attacking the Straw Man.
The Straw Man fallacy is committed when a person simply ignores a person's actual position and substitutes or restates it in a distorted, exaggerated or misrepresented version of that position. viz
Person A has position X.
Person B restates position X as position Y
Person B then demolishes position Y.
Therefore X is false/incorrect/flawed.
This sort of "reasoning" is fallacious because attacking a distorted version of a position simply does not constitute an refutation of the position itself.

There are a total of 42 fallacies, which is more than I ever learned, but I think some which are considered here as individual issues were lumped together in my old logic book.

Normally the classic syllogism to prove something involves 3 statements the last of which combines elements of the first 2 into a statement you want to prove or be true. If either of the first 2 statements is false, the conclusion is false.
From the Appeal to Authority:

Person A is (claimed to be) an authority on subject S.
Person A makes claim C about subject S.
Therefore, C is true.
Well, it may be, but just because A is an authority, and he is speaking about his field of expertise he could still be wrong unless he can provide evidence.

Its at least worth a read in order to tone down some of the accusations flying around.

Rob

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Wow,
by duckman / May 24, 2006 3:31 AM PDT

all that and you still aren't impressing anyone with your superior knowledge

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personal attacks such as this one
by grimgraphix / May 24, 2006 3:47 AM PDT
In reply to: Wow,

are just silly in my opinion.

They don't display a moral or intellectual superiority like many here seem to believe.

How or why anyone gains satisfaction from such comments is beyond me.

grim

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Well,
by duckman / May 24, 2006 3:49 AM PDT

he posts for two reasons and thats one of them

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How is it an attsack?
by EdH / May 24, 2006 4:50 AM PDT

It's an observation and it strikes me as very true. Rob has a habit of shpowing off what he seems to think is his superior intellect.

I think that is very hard to deny if you are familiar at all with his posts.

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DM's comment had nothing to do...
by grimgraphix / May 24, 2006 5:22 AM PDT
In reply to: How is it an attsack?

with the content of the post. The criticism was directed solely at Rob himself.

Killing the messenger does not lessen or increase the value of the message itself.

Do you disagree with the information in Rob's post Ed? Is the information incorrect?

Rob made an interesting contribution and DM chose to deny its value by attacking Rob rather than the content of the post. If he didn't agree with or think the post was valuable he could have said just that.

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Ask Rob to stop his daily
by duckman / May 24, 2006 5:25 AM PDT

repugnant atttacks on the President of which are all LIES

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What in the world does this have to do...
by grimgraphix / May 24, 2006 5:43 AM PDT

with the rules and classification of argument and debate?

as for comments about any president present or past I prefer Mark Twains comment Loyalty to the country always. Loyalty to the government when it deserves it.

To avoid repugnant attacks one should never become a politician! Wink

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See, there you go again Duckman. I don't attack the
by Ziks511 / May 24, 2006 7:43 AM PDT

President daily, but occasionally I find a news item that calls the President's actions or behavior into question I post it. Seems to me that some people here post about Kerry, or Clinton, or Durbin or Murtha or an awful lot of others virtually daily, but somehow you don't see that as the same thing.

Now if he was a better President I'd have less to post about, but I've still gone weeks without a post about Bush, and have gotten no better treatment out of it. If you wanted more quiet, maybe you should have elected Jeb Bush, the smarter one. He looks like he could handle the job without declaring himself above the law.

Are you saying that Bush hasn't stepped on more than 750 laws as reported in the Mainstream Press? Is that one of the supposed lies despite the evidence? If you and your junkie pal Rushie hadn't made President baiting the national sport, perhaps you'd have gotten more respect for Junior. But its always the other persons fault with you.

I just love being called to account for posts that run longer than 8 lines as if having more than one thought were a crime.

Rob

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Did we read the same post?
by EdH / May 24, 2006 5:29 AM PDT

I stand by my statement.

As to whether Rob's information was correct of not, I only skimmed it. If there were no insults in it that would be a first. He has fouled the best far too often.

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Rob rarely, that is EXTREMELY.........
by Glenda / May 24, 2006 5:39 AM PDT

RARELY posts anything without insulting The President, The USA or some other member, which is WHY I quit reading anything he has to say.

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if you don't read anything Rob has to say...
by grimgraphix / May 24, 2006 5:46 AM PDT

then why did you even click on this thread?

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(NT) (NT) ROFLMAO! That's a tough one!
by Terry Browne / May 24, 2006 6:04 AM PDT
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You are ALL...
by Jack Ammann / May 24, 2006 7:44 AM PDT

...''A''. Which part fell ''O''??????

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I glance thru
by Glenda / May 24, 2006 7:08 AM PDT

what hge has to say, going to the bottom where I know the zingers always are! Don't feel too bad for Rob as I seldom read your's either

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(NT) (NT) LOL
by grimgraphix / May 24, 2006 7:15 AM PDT
In reply to: I glance thru
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Insulting the president?
by Terry Browne / May 24, 2006 6:04 AM PDT

Have you ever seen the insults on the entire population of France? THAT'S an insult!

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(NT) (NT) Or the entire population of the South?
by duckman / May 24, 2006 6:09 AM PDT
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Changing the subject?
by EdH / May 24, 2006 6:10 AM PDT

Besides, Rob's insults have been much worse and more frequent by far.

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No, that's the truth.
by Kiddpeat / May 24, 2006 7:20 AM PDT

An insult is something which isn't true.

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BTW, I don't need a primer on elementrs of debate...
by EdH / May 24, 2006 5:39 AM PDT

I know them, and I especially don't needed the spun version.

For instance:

Appeal to Authority, or Argumentum ad Verecundiam.
It must be true because this or that authority says its true. Hence WMDs. or the use of FoxNews, NewsMax or any of the other tame news sources which follow the Republican, or Administration line.


OR

Use of a Biased Sample. Like asking an opinion of something on Speakeasy, the opinion will reflect a conservative bias.

See what I mean, eh?

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I see what you mean but...
by grimgraphix / May 24, 2006 5:57 AM PDT

I have seen the same argumentative style adopted by both sides on this board.

I've lost count of the posts made here using op/ed pieces from conservative pundits that have been presented as "TRUTH" never mind the facts.

BTW... your post Ed, which I'm replying to, discusses content of Rob's posting... not comments directed at Rob personally nor any snide comment about personal intelligence or motivations.

That is the reason why I called DM's comment a personal attack

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I don't think it was an attack...
by EdH / May 24, 2006 6:16 AM PDT

It IS what Rob does. That's not a fantasy.

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heres link to an online encyclopedia
by Mark5019 / May 24, 2006 6:28 AM PDT
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your link took me to a login page Mark
by grimgraphix / May 24, 2006 6:34 AM PDT

sorry but you would do better to clip and paste. Happy

grim

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(NT) (NT) Perfect example of an ad hominem attack, DM. :-(
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / May 24, 2006 3:52 AM PDT
In reply to: Wow,
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The problem is, DM, you probably don't see the posts that
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / May 24, 2006 5:11 AM PDT

ARE deleted. One of the key factors is stepping over the line to name names -- "many here" or "some here" is quite different that "that fool Rob."

-- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

The opinions expressed above are my own,
and do not necessarily reflect those of CNET!

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That has NOTHING to do with
by duckman / May 24, 2006 5:18 AM PDT

the posts that are left up

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slight change,
by duckman / May 24, 2006 5:26 AM PDT

should be "the GARBAGE that is left up and tolerated by........."

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Like this?
by Terry Browne / May 24, 2006 6:08 AM PDT
In reply to: slight change,
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