Accused of a fallacy? Suspect a fallacy? Ask Dr. Bo and the community!

Quickly register to comment, ask and respond to questions, and get FREE access to our passive online course on cognitive biases!
Register!

one moment please...


Welcome! This is the place to ask the community of experts and other fallacyophites (I made up that word) if someone has a committed a fallacy or not. This is a great way to settle a dispute! This is also the home of the "Mastering Logical Fallacies" student support.


Dr. Bo's Criteria for Logical Fallacies:

  1. It must be an error in reasoning not a factual error.
  2. It must be commonly applied to an argument either in the form of the argument or in the interpretation of the argument.
  3. It must be deceptive in that it often fools the average adult.

Therefore, we will define a logical fallacy as a concept within argumentation that commonly leads to an error in reasoning due to the deceptive nature of its presentation. Logical fallacies can comprise fallacious arguments that contain one or more non-factual errors in their form or deceptive arguments that often lead to fallacious reasoning in their evaluation.

Contact Form



Send me a copy of this message
Send Message sending message...

Q&A Home Question

0

votes

image loading...
Jacob

Seasoned Vet

image loading...

Jacob


Seasoned Vet

About Jacob

Sorry, this user has not created a bio yet.
Fri, Nov 02, 2018 - 04:42 PM

We should be thankful that god provides us all with air to breathe.

I read a story about a man who had convinced a town that he owned all of the air and the people in the town were thankful to him for providing it. If someone crossed him he took away their air privileges and they suffocated, presumably because they knew they should not breath air which did not belong to them.

I have seen this in other places too.

"We should be thankful to god for providing us with food, shelter, safety (and air).

An abusive husband might say...

"You should be thankful to me for letting you talk to your friends after after what you did yesterday."

An abused wife might believe this saying...

"I am lucky my husband let me talk to you after I disappointed him yesterday."

Is this a fallacy?



Quick Comment On This Question (no login required):
Your comment below will be anonymously sent to the question owner, it will not be posted, and you will not get a response.

Send Comment sending comment...

3 Answers

0

votes

image loading...
Michael Chase Walker
Screenwriter, producer, mythoclast

Seasoned Vet

image loading...

Michael Chase Walker

Screenwriter, producer, mythoclast

Seasoned Vet

About Michael Chase Walker

Michael Chase Walker is an actor, author, screenwriter, producer, and a former adjunct lecturer for the College of Santa Fe Moving Images Department, and Dreamworks Animation. His first motion picture was the animated classic, The Last Unicorn.
Michael was an in-house television writer for the hit television series: He-Man, She-Ra, Voltron, and V, the Series. In 1985, he was appointed Director of Children's programs for CBS Entertainment where he conceived, shaped and supervised the entire 1985 Saturday Morning line-up: Wildfire, Pee Wee's Playhouse, Galaxy High School, Teen Wolf, and over 10
Print Fri, Nov 02, 2018 - 04:53 PM
Argumentum Ad Baculum


Quick Comment On This Answer (no login required):
Your comment below will be anonymously sent to the answer owner, it will not be posted, and you will not get a response.

Send Comment sending comment...

1

votes

image loading...
Bo Bennett, PhD
Author of Logically Fallacious

Moderator

image loading...

Bo Bennett, PhD

Author of Logically Fallacious

Moderator

About Bo Bennett, PhD

Bo's personal motto is "Expose an irrational belief, keep a person rational for a day. Expose irrational thinking, keep a person rational for a lifetime."  Much of his charitable work is in the area of education—not teaching people what to think, but how to think.  His projects include his book, The Concept: A Critical and Honest Look at God and Religion, and Logically Fallacious, the most comprehensive collection of logical fallacies.  Bo's personal blog is called Relationship With Reason, where he writes about several topics related to critical thinking.  His secular (humanistic) philosophy is detailed at PositiveHumanism.com.
Bo is currently the producer and host of The Humanist Hour, the official broadcast of the American Humanist Association, where he can be heard weekly discussing a variety of humanistic issued, mostly related to science, psychology, philosophy, and critical thinking.

Full bio can be found at http://www.bobennett.com
Print Fri, Nov 02, 2018 - 06:04 PM
That really isn't an argument; it's more of a statement of faith. Let's take religion out of it and use the example:

"I am lucky my husband let me talk to you after I disappointed him yesterday."

While still not an argument, it does demonstrate flawed reasoning characterized by and unhealthy psychological state as well as strong emotion... in this case, perhaps a lack of self-respect and fear. I think this is categorically different from the God example because of the "faith" element that is unfalsifiable (that God gave us air). Interestingly, in the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM-5) there are several disorders that have religious exceptions. Like the saying goes, one man talking to an invisible friend is crazy, when many people do it, it's religion. :)
Bo Bennett, PhD
Social Scientist, Business Consultant
Coaching / Consulting > https://tinyurl.com/coachingbybo
About My Businesses > http://www.archieboy.com
About Me > http://www.bobennett.com
Books I’ve Written > https://tinyurl.com/bosbooks
Courses I Teach > https://tinyurl.com/boscourses
Podcasts I Host > https://tinyurl.com/bospodcasts


Quick Comment On This Answer (no login required):
Your comment below will be anonymously sent to the answer owner, it will not be posted, and you will not get a response.

Send Comment sending comment...

0

votes

image loading...
Rich McMahon

Seasoned Vet

image loading...

Rich McMahon


Seasoned Vet

About Rich McMahon

Sorry, this user has not created a bio yet.
Print Fri, Nov 02, 2018 - 10:58 PM
To cut Bo’s comment to the chase, the point is, there is no logical fallacy here; merely an opinion, however disagreeable to some/many.


Registered User Comments

Michael Chase Walker
Saturday, November 03, 2018 - 12:36:36 PM
Actually, there is an implied threat in the details of the original question and subsequent scenarios: (Ad Baculum fallacy)

"I read a story about a man who had convinced a town that he owned all of the air and the people in the town were thankful to him for providing it."

This is clearly a parable but it might also be a special pleading of some variation if further developed as a syllogism. Certainly, the gullibility of the townsfolk might be better diagnosed as a viral cognitive bias or a symptom of mass hysteria. ( Perhaps even an example of ad populum if the reasoning to believe the charlatan's preposterous claim is because everyone else in the town believes it to be true,

However, the questioner goes on to explain: "If someone crossed him (he took away their air privileges) and they suffocated, presumably because they knew they should not breath (sic) air which did not belong to them."

The paralogical reason here is that you must believe the charlatan's claim or else "he will take away their privilege" is definitely an example of ad baculum fallacy.

As are the other scenarios:

"We should be thankful to god for providing us with food, shelter, safety (and air). ( Or else face the consequences of suffocation)

An abusive husband might say...

"You should be thankful to me for letting you talk to your friends after after (sic) what you did yesterday." The implied threat is if she does not exhibit the proper expression of gratitude the abuse will continue.

An abused wife might believe this saying...

"I am lucky my husband let me talk to you after I disappointed him yesterday." This is more of an example of battered wife syndrome than a logical fallacy.

login to reply
7 replies
0 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...
 

Bo Bennett, PhD
moderator
Saturday, November 03, 2018 - 12:46:16 PM
Many claims/threats can be converted into an argument or have implied arguments. If one can argue for an implied argument, than one can also argue for a more "official" fallacy. I think the bottom line is clear and something on which we can all agree: these statements are not made from a place of good reasoning (either poor reasoning is used or in the case of faith, "faith" and no reasoning), and this is what is most troubling about them.

login to reply
 
1 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...
 

Jacob
Saturday, November 03, 2018 - 12:47:52 PM
Could this be a fallacy of fantasy projection.

what if I think I own all the air and this is a fantasy. If I ask you to pay me to use the air which I own then I am projecting my fantasy onto those around me. If people believe that I really do own all the air then they are falling for the fallacy too.

login to reply
 
0 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...
 

Michael Chase Walker
Saturday, November 03, 2018 - 01:54:19 PM
It's hard to tell, the question itself seems to be a weird parody (parable) of religious hysteria itself, but with an argument that is often used by fundamentalists as the ultimate go-to threat: believe or face the consequences. So, while the construction of the question seems odd, the fallacy behind it seems somewhat self-evident.

login to reply
 
0 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...
 

Jacob
Monday, November 05, 2018 - 02:39:50 AM
@Bo Bennett, PhD: I am an atheist and if a christian told me that I was a sinner who needed to repent that is his fantasy from my perspective. So assuming that there is no christian god, is the christian suffering from the fallacy of fantasy projection?

login to reply
 
0 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...
 

Bo Bennett, PhD
moderator
Monday, November 05, 2018 - 07:36:18 AM
@Jacob: Let's review that definition:

Confusing subjective experiences, usually very emotionally charged, with objective realities, then suggesting or demanding that others accept the fantasy as truth.

So it depends on one's justification for their belief. As you know, many believers think that the evidence points to a god, and some don't even rely on personal experiences. So in these cases, no. However, if one is basing their claim to "truth" primarily on subjective experiences then I would say yes.

login to reply
 
0 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...
 

Jacob
Monday, November 05, 2018 - 12:30:57 PM
@Bo Bennett, PhD: Okay so if someone uses subjective experiences to back up their belief in Christianity then the argument qualifies as fantasy projection? I can relate to this. I was raised christian, but I never felt any subjective "evidence" that god existed. I converted to logic when I as 22.

login to reply
 
0 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...
 

Bo Bennett, PhD
moderator
Monday, November 05, 2018 - 01:15:33 PM
@Jacob:
Okay so if someone uses subjective experiences to back up their belief in Christianity then the argument qualifies as fantasy projection?

then suggesting or demanding that others accept the fantasy as truth. - Yes

login to reply
 
1 votes
 
Reply To Comment
working...



About Archieboy Holdings, LLC. Privacy Policy Other Books Written by Bo
 Website Software Copyright 2018, Archieboy Holdings, LLC.