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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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Tony

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Tony


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Mon, Dec 31, 2018 - 04:28 AM

Why are rappers and sports stars earning more in a week than nurses in a year/

There's a fallacy which I can't remember the name of; it's about people that are greatly valued in the community such as nurses, teachers, firemen etc and that their annual salary is often less than what many top celebrities such as sports stars, film stars, rappers etc earn in a week or even a day. People then come out with some sort of crazy statement about how "we" should stop paying these celebrities so much and pay that money to the nurses instead!
Can you tell me what the name of this fallacy is please?



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Keith Curley

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Keith Curley


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Print Tue, Jan 01, 2019 - 11:41 AM
Historically this is called "the paradox of value."

An example often used is that water is so much more "valuable" for life than diamonds, yet diamonds command a higher market price. So, one would argue that nurses are more important or valuable than athletes, or we hear about how important teachers are yet they're paid less etc etc.

But as Dr. Bennett mentions market prices are determined roughly by supply and demand. There's an awful lot of water which is much more accessible than there are diamonds. Similarly with nurses and teachers compared to celebrities. So the supply--how much of something is offered at what prices--is shifted so far compared to the demand--how much people want at what prices--that the price is low for teachers, water etc.

One fallacy that seems to be involved is the fallacy of division. Although the total amount of water is much more valuable than the total amount of diamonds in the world that does not mean that any small quantity of water would be or even should be more valuable. So with nurses, firemen etc--we might prefer to lose ALL of our celebrities to losing ALL of our nurses, but that doesn't mean we'd care so much about losing any particular one, which could be more easily replaced in the nurse category than in the celebrity 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, Dec 31, 2018 - 09:03 AM
There is no fallacy; just a misunderstanding of economics. Salaries are roughly based on the law of supply and demand, not perceived value. If someone were to claim that teachers SHOULD be paid more than professional athletes, then they are just expressing an opinion.
Bo Bennett, PhD
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Abdulazeez Alabbasi

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Abdulazeez Alabbasi


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Print Mon, Dec 31, 2018 - 04:54 AM
What you are referring to doesn't strike me as a fallacy, but it could be the result of a cognitive bias called the just-world fallacy or the just-world hypothesis.


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