Questions tagged [fallacies]

concerns logical fallacies, which are errors in the logic or reasoning of an argument that result in a misconception or presumption. The fallacies tag is also appropriate for analysis of tactics that may be applied deliberately to deceive. For example, if tactical omissions in an argument motivate a member of the audience to try to fill in omitted elements, then this can be portrayed as a straw man attack against the creator of the argument.

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Is this a 'Post hoc ergo propter hoc' Fallacy?

Is this a Post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy? 'The most intense lightning storm ever recorded was followed by many numerous Bushfires; the lightning must have caused them.' and why? Thanks for any ...
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Is there a formal name for the “philosopher's fallacy” or “fallacy of underwhelming exception”?

I'm looking for the name for a particular logical fallacy that I think of variously as the "philosopher's fallacy" or the "annoying middle school kid fallacy", based on the ...
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Is this a fallacy?

Julie wrote in her diary. At the end of his life, James asked God to forgive him for his sins. There is further historical evidence to show that James performed various public welfare activities ...
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How reliable are scientific instruments such as spectrometry in the determination of the oldest material “Startdust”? [closed]

After reading one of the latest findings by scientists, Stardust was considered the oldest material on earth. However having not much of an experience with chemistry, I was intrigued upon how ...
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Is the DREAM controversy an example of the logical fallacy of personal incredulity?

There's this Minecraft speed-runner called Dream who has been accused of cheating due to his drop luck. A moderator team has calculated that the p-value of the chance you'd get the same drops as Dream ...
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“If everyone could just …” [closed]

In debates (including, but not limited to, political settings) participants sometimes argue along the lines of "If everyone could just start/stop doing X this would not be a problem". Take, ...
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What type of logical fallacy happens here?

This has been going on a lot lately in my country. Usually, in a discussion where some antisocial behavior of an organization is being criticized, a supporter of the organization, usually a member of ...
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What type of logical fallacy leads to a false conclusion of expertise?

If someone says they have never taken an action, and never had any issues, therefore that action is problematic, and they are now an expert what logical fallacy(s) is that? For example: "Driving ...
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What is the philosophical term for using half-truths to intentionally mislead?

Our local school district has been distributing propaganda to support keeping schools open during an uncontrolled pandemic. There has been a common pattern among these statements, where a half-truth ...
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Is it possible to draw the line with “hasty generalization”?

At what point does a generalization become fallacious and hasty? If I say people who smoke get cancer and the data shows that 90% of smokers get cancer, is that still a hasty generalization? Or 60%? ...
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How are objective probabilites and statistics (frequency in the world) of groups related to individual cases?

I'm a bit confused about why frequentist measures of probability based on groups are relevant to individual cases. It seems that moving from the group to the individual is somehow a violation of the ...
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What is the philosophical term used to describe flawed logic?

A freak snowstorm strikes Washington, D.C. Climate change deniers hail it as evidence of global COOLING, not warming. It seems logical since snow is popularly associated with cold. However, it seldom ...
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Utilitarianism and naturalistic fallacy [closed]

Does utilitarianism commit the naturalistic fallacy? Can someone tell with respect to act and rule utilitarianism?
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Is my analysis of Dawkins fallicies correct?

I have been analyzing arguments made by prominent atheist and looking for logical fallacies. I am new at this. Are my analyses correct? from: “The All Time best arguments against religion/faith #2 (...
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Difference between non-sequitur fallacy and post hoc fallacy?

What is the difference between post hoc fallacy and non sequitur fallacy?
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Is it a logical fallacy to change or restrict the meaning of an idea, word or concept used to prove an argument?

This is not meant to be a political discussion. I just have run into this technique of sort of reverse engineering an argument that usually relies on some sort of redefining or narrowly restricting ...
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What are some non-trivial examples of the use/mention error?

Examples of use/ mention fallacies one often encounters are toy examples, such as : (1) The Morning Star is Venus. (2) Venus is a 5 letters word. (3) Therefore the Morning Star is a 5 letters word. (1)...
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What is my fallacy? LSAT Reasoning Question: Titanium Ink

I have a question regarding an LSAT Reasoning question and it drives me crazy Question is: Until recently it was thought that ink used before the sixteenth century did not contain titanium. However, ...
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On questions such as “How do you know that X doesn't work? Have you tried it all possible ways?”

I often find people using questions similar to the following one: How do you know there isn't a god? Have you looked everywhere? As the answer to the second question is obviously "no", ...
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Is there a name for when people don't actually “improve” something?

A lot times, though not all, when people do something they feel it is particularly righteous, it is a very shortsighted approach that lacks a more holistic consideration of other variables. Is there a ...
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Experiencing and sensing time dilation when a person dies and the logic of

It is well known that when a person goes to sleep, there are instances when we do not experience time which has phenomenological implications. There is a temporal discontinuity. It is also known that ...
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Causality, Universal and Particulars, Evolution, and Theology

In a Socratic dialogue I wrote published in issue 122 of "Philosophy Now", I have Socrates conversing with a scientist (Moe), on a park bench. Socrates has come down from the clouds to take ...
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Does the following argument about the ontological nature of math exhibit poor reasoning?

Argument P1: Mathematics is the substrate upon which all natural phenomena occur and necessarily governs phenomena in the physical world. P2: One can experience something that is not mathematically ...
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Name for a logical fallacy: confusing measures in argumentation

I have encountered a line of reasoning in my research which seems to be fallacious. An example is if you wanted to know something about the general health of an individual, you could measure many ...
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Knowing versus understanding the composition of the universe

The mass-energy content of the Universe is approximately this: 5% normal matter, 20% dark matter, and 75% dark energy. Because we don't know much about dark matter and dark energy, apart from the fact ...
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What's the name of the fallacy?

What's the name of the fallacy? If I assume, someone X has done a fallacy in other argument A1 so he will do a fallacy in another argument A2. What would be the name of this fallacy I am doing?
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Why does a hypothesis not self-defeat under fallacy of the gaps?

I was listening to an atheism-vs-theism debate on YouTube, and the two debaters came to a disagreement when talking about God of the Gaps. Person A: "If we look at all the evidence, we can see ...
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What is this logical fallacy called? [duplicate]

You made mistakes in the past, but learned from them and now you are not committing these mistakes any longer. However, because you committed these mistakes in the past, some might say, that you are ...
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What is this fallacy: “Expecting something to continue just because it has never stopped”

For example: Technology will keep advancing in terms of innovation purely because it has not stopped advancing. Is there a fallacy for this?
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What fallacy does “technology will have improved next year, so let's wait” fall under?

Technology is rapidly evolving; each year brings new innovations, new devices and improved software solutions. If one were to start a new software project, one might reason as follows: I could build ...
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Is there a name for this variation of poisoning the well?

Poisoning the well refers to the practice of presenting embarrassing information about an opponent, discrediting the opponent and, by extension, discrediting their message as well. Is there a name for ...
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What is “Can't make X? Don't criticize it.” fallacy called?

What is the name of the fallacy that attempts to invalidate a criticism of an instance of doing an activity because one providing the criticism is not very proficient in said activity (or not doing it ...
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Is there a name for this Freudian-inspired fallacy?

Yet another of these fallacy questions... There is a certain kind of rhetorical move which famously might occur in classical psychoanalysis, but also in other situations. The therapist says the ...
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Is the use of this conditional proposition correct, or does it violate the rules of logic?

Is the reasoning answering this logic puzzle correct? One of the answers was by Hexomino on question 1: I think that the lawyer's statement does not help the client. Consider the following statement &...
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Is there a name for this kind of (bad) argumentation?

I get into / come across exchanges like the following all the time. Sally: Murder and cutting in line are similar in that they're both immoral. John: Are you SERIOUSLY comparing CUTTING IN LINE with ...
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Is there a name for this fallacy?

In order for me to describe this “fallacy” coherently, I will write it as an analogy. So, I was reading how people were saying Trump was not taking the pandemic seriously and he needed to take further ...
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What is the name of this fallacy: Is 101 binary or decimal?

A similar example would be of binary and decimal number where we are not sure about the number system or the person who proposed a number is not remotely available to disclose about number system. e....
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Mathematical universe hypothesis: Why shouldn't all imaginable universes exist?

In his paper on mathematical universe hypothesis, Max Tegmark only responses with a single paragraph to this assumption: The MUH and the Level IV multiverse idea does certainly not imply that all ...
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What fallacy is this that I see all the time? [duplicate]

What is this fallacy? I see it all the time. Someone will say something like “it’s so good to see these animals released from captivity” and then another will reply with a response along the lines of.....
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Only three countries don't use the metric system: the US, Liberia and Myanmar

"Ha ha, stupid America is just like Liberia and Myanmar!!" I know this has to be a logical fallacy, but don't know which one. Is that the fallacy of False Equivalency (an equivalence is ...
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What fallacy is this? Ignoring rate of change

What is this fallacy? "I threw a ball onto the roof. Which way did gravity pull it? Well obviously because the ball started on the ground level and ended up on the roof then gravity must have ...
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Baconian Logical Fallacy

I have been reading about logical fallacies lately, and I saw the Baconian fallacy listed here (of course on everyone's favorite site, Wikipedia). The description provided reads: "using pieces of ...
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Is this a fallacy, and if so which?

Recently, I had this conversation at the workplace: me: I'm calling you because John needs access to this resource. I have access already and we need it to complete our work. her: Why do you have ...
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Looking for pseudo-fallacy list or reference

In studying fallacies, one comes across an endless variety of "things" that appear to be fallacious but aren't really fallacies at all. Many of them have names, though I'm not sure if there'...
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Which fallacy? Explaining something based on a hypothesis

I am studying physics and have often come across the line of reasoning that goes like this: "Phenomenon A is/happens this way because otherwise it would contradict the B principle." Physics ...
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Is political equality meaningfully achievable as a political goal? [closed]

In a recently closed post Is equality as a political goal meaningless?, the OP posed this question [as edited by me]: Is the concept of political equality, itself, meaningless, without referencing ...
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Play by these rules, however broken, or create new ones

Example, A: The rules are unfair, you see, only privileged few are getting the benefit. B: I don't see anything wrong with that. Either create new rules, or hustle through these and be like them. What ...
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H{+}: “absence of evidence = evidence of absence?” — Is it necessarily informally logically fallacious to claim H{+}? Or are there exceptions? [duplicate]

Absence of Evidence =|= Evidence of Absence Does this proposition always hold (true), or are there exceptions? Is it a logical fallacy to claim: “absence of evidence is evidence of absence”? How is ...
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Help with Circular Reasoning example and whether this example is fallacious

I thought of a scenario that raised some question for me, consider you: [A] Face prejudice because of X --> [B] Makes you more inclined to assume the next person who mistreats you is doing so ...
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What is the name of this fallacy (if it is one)

So I stumbled on a discussion that went a little like this: Person A: "Something has happened to a family member and has been hospitalized, please be aware so it does not happen to you" ...

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