Fallacy: Circular Reasoning
Oct19

Fallacy: Circular Reasoning

Read in one minute  Simply put, in circular reasoning, the premise assumes that the conclusion is already true. If you want to prove the conclusion, look to the premise. Don’t believe the premise? Look to the conclusion. Don’t believe the conclusion? Look to the premise… Circular.   Example of circular reasoning You should believe that every single thing I tell you is true because somewhere on this site is...

Read More
Fallacy: Appeal to Possibility
Oct19

Fallacy: Appeal to Possibility

Read in one minute  In an appeal to possibility fallacy, the speaker suggests that because something could be true that it is.   Example of appeal to possibility fallacy Of course ghosts are real. Up until recently, we couldn’t prove that the Higgs boson was real, but then we found it. Who’s to say that we won’t prove ghosts are real 50 years from now? Premise 1: There was a time when we couldn’t...

Read More
Fallacy: Black or White Thinking
Oct19

Fallacy: Black or White Thinking

Read in 3 minutes  Understanding fallacies isn’t just helpful for winning arguments – they can be helpful in achieving emotional balance. I first learned about this fallacy when volunteering to help people in crisis as part of our training. In that context, the logical error goes like this: I fail at a lot of the things I have tried. I am a failure and worthless. A black or white fallacy or binary thinking occurs when...

Read More

Fallacy: Red Herring

Read in 2 minutes  The red herring fallacy could also be called the, look over there fallacy. Much like its use in fiction, the red herring in arguments is meant to avoid talking about the subject at hand.   Example of red herring fallacy Mary: “I’m very concerned about putting someone who believes that sexual assault is ok, as Fred does, in charge of making our rules.” Fred: “George has also...

Read More

Personal Attacks (Ad Hominem Fallacy)

Read in 2 minutes  A personal attack (or ad hominem fallacy) is a change from the subject at hand to the person or persons speaking on that subject. Traditionally, this looks like one person presenting an idea, solution, or issue and another person dismissing it – either publicly or privately – by attacking the person who presented it.   Example of an ad hominem fallacy – or personal attack “Why...

Read More