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Logical Fallacies Part IV

Scott CunninghamJul 31, 2018, 5:04:22 PM

Hey hey! I want to talk to again you about logical fallacies! There are oh so many and I'd like to go over them. We are now on to part 4 of my series on Minds. In this series, we are only covering the actual fallacies and what they are, not the application of them or anything outside of the basics.

Remember for your argument to be logical, THOU MUST NOT COMMIT LOGICAL FALLACIES! Instead of just pointlessly copying and pasting, I will describe these in my own words for you, if that isn't your thing, check out the bottom for references. Otherwise, kindly read on...


Availability Bias

This is the fallacy where we as humans tend to give more attention to the first and last pieces of evidence, the more immediate information. We tend to ignore the broader and wider evidence presented or evidence not easily accessed. A common use of this is "we know from experience that ____________." Even though there may be evidence pointing to a better solution, someone might argue from tradition or experience saying that because we know this works that it must still work and because it works, it isn't broken, thus it doesn't need to be changed. Something similar to this is the hyperbole fallacy which we will cover later.

Bandwagon Fallacy

This is a very dangerous fallacy and can also be referred to as lying with statistics. This states that because the majority thinks something, it must be fact or arguing from the reasoning that the majority view is that of an authority and can be used as proof. This is very interesting, because for example, in law, the whole point of law is to represent the majority's values. We see this used a lot in politics like say there was accusations of voter fraud. A poll was then taken and they said because 75% of public believe there was no fraud, there was no fraud. Another situation could be where you accuse someone of a crime and because many people don't like them and believe that he committed a crime and want him locked up, doesn't mean we can lock them up with no evidence. Even statistics and surveys can be bulls-eye targeting where they only survey the people who help their cause or anecdotal.

The Big/Little Brain Fallacy

This fallacy is seen most commonly in religion and cults. It's a version of the blind loyalty fallacy. In this instance an authority/leader tells their followers not to think using their "little brains" but rather to think with your "big brain." This is a subtle way of saying do not think for yourselves, but rather conform to the collective. The reason people buy into these is because they are given this idea that they have no responsibility to their actions if they give up their freedom to the leader who takes on all liability and responsibility. 

The Big But Fallacy

This one is very interesting that it ever even works, BUT it does. This is the fallacy where you state something that is well known and generally accepted, then you add a "but" at the end as if this case is exempt from the accepted norms. A great instance is in our moral reasoning tied in with religion like: "I know sinning is wrong and that I shouldn't, BUT I couldn't help myself." We see this a lot in law: "We require evidence and must treat the accused as innocent until proven guilty, BUT we 'know' he did it, so we can convict and charge him without due process." What they really means is we know the accused won't fight this or won't be able to fight this long enough to have us drop it so it's easier to just charge them and they will likely just pay (more for non-indictable offenses, but you get the point).

The Big Lie Technique

This is very very interesting and reminds me of cognitive dissonance. The big lie is where a lie is repeated enough time and in different forms that it is generally accepted without proof. This is perfect for people who like to call everything a conspiracy theory. If everything you don't want to be true or find inconvenient is a conspiracy theory, then you believe the big lie. It's not "the big lie" to be exact, but rather a big lie. This can be anything! Today the big lie that I see the most is people who are more outspoken being labelled as a Nazi to dehumanize them and encourage we "take action" against them. It's sad and ironic that people today are using the term Nazi to do exactly what Nazis did to the Jews (to dehumanize and silence). Also note that these people like Jordan Peterson are 100% not Nazis and simply don't agree with collective and that's all it takes to get labelled as such. A journalist just a week ago I believe was assaulted in public by ANTIFA because they called him a Nazi because they didn't want him filming their activities and then random people just attacked him assuming he was in fact a Nazi. @Timcast covered this very recently. Anyways I don't want to turn this into a political blog so I'll end it here!


Check out these 2 resources I like to use and often refer to:



If you love philosophy as much as I do, feel free to give me a thumbs up and share your thoughts.

If you want to make sure people aren't committing logical fallacies be sure to REMIND them! 

Check out the 3rd blog post in this logical fallacies series


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