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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.

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Agnus Bliss

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Agnus Bliss


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About Agnus Bliss

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isitafallacy
tuquoque
Mon, Nov 19, 2018 - 12:13 PM

Is there a “me too” fallacy?

Say I have been arguing with someone regarding personal experiences. Every time I bring up an issue I would like to address, the other party takes my phrases, and turns them around to invalidate my points.

Example:
Me: It hurts me when you do this...
Them: Well it hurts me when you do this..

Nothing is left settled. I listen and try to understand but this is how our conversations go whether about feelings, actions, problems in the world. It’s back and forth and it’s exhausting. Is this similar to a Tu Quoque? (I’m not sure of spelling on that one)




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Bo Bennett, PhD
Author of Logically Fallacious

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Bo Bennett, PhD

Author of Logically Fallacious

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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 Mon, Nov 19, 2018 - 12:21 PM
This can also be avoiding the issue (see https://www.logicallyfallacious.com/tools/lp/Bo/LogicalFallacies/61/Avoiding-the-Issue). The issue brought up is not addressed, rather a new issue is raised. A good response might go like this.

Me: It hurts me when you do this...
Them: Well it hurts me when you do this..
Me: Let's address that, but first, lets address my issue then we will get to yours. Sound fair?
Bo Bennett, PhD
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Michael Chase Walker
Screenwriter, producer, mythoclast

Seasoned Vet

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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 Mon, Nov 19, 2018 - 12:17 PM
Hey Agnus,

Check out Dr. Bo's variation on the argumentum ad hominem tu quoque (You too) argument:
(also known as: “you too” fallacy, hypocrisy, personal inconsistency)

Description: Claiming the argument is flawed by pointing out that the one making the argument is not acting consistently with the claims of the argument.

Logical Form:

Person 1 is claiming that Y is true, but person 1 is acting as if Y is not true.
Therefore, Y must not be true.
Example #1:

Helga: You should not be eating that... it has been scientifically proven that eating fat burgers are no good for your health.
Hugh: You eat fat burgers all the time so that can’t be true.
Explanation: It doesn’t matter (to the truth claim of the argument at least) if Helga follows her own advice or not. While it might appear that the reason she does not follow her own advice is that she doesn’t believe it’s true, it could also be that those fat burgers are just too damn irresistible.

Example #2:

Jimmy Swaggart argued strongly against sexual immorality, yet he has had several affairs with prostitutes; therefore, sexual immorality is acceptable.
Explanation: The fact Jimmy Swaggart likes to play a round of bedroom golf with some local entrepreneurial ladies, is not evidence for sexual immorality in general, only that he is sexually immoral.

Exception: If Jimbo insisted that his actions were in line with sexual morality, then it would be a very germane part of the argument.

Tip: Again, admit when your lack of self-control or willpower has nothing to do with the truth claim of the proposition. The following is what I remember my dad telling me about smoking (he smoked about four packs a day since he was 14).

Bo, never be a stupid a--hole like me and start smoking. It is a disgusting habit that I know will eventually kill me. If you never start, you will never miss it.
My dad died at age 69 -- of lung cancer. I never touched a cigarette in my life and never plan to touch one.


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Registered User Comments

Colin P
Tuesday, November 20, 2018 - 09:04:32 PM
Yes there is a fallacy, but is there not also a psychology? To try to understand is not the same as to understand. If you do not understand their point, why should they understand yours? Conversely if you want them to understand your point then first show them you understand theirs.

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