Logical Fallacies

Length: 4 Pages 1014 Words

Logical Fallacies There are several important components to critical thinking. One aspect of particular significance is logical correctness. In order to be a more effective problem solver, one should be able to recognize and avoid logical fallacies whenever possible. According to Cline (2004), logical fallacies are “defects in an argument - other than false premises - which cause an argument to be invalid, unsound or weak.” Discussed throughout this paper are three specific logical fallacies and their importance to critical thinking and decision making. The fallacies to be covered are Ad Hominem or personal attack fallacy, Tu Quoque, which is also known as the ‘look who’s talking’ fallacy, and the Appeal to Pity fallacy. The first two are fallacies of relevance, whereas the third is an appeal to emotion fallacy. The first type of logical fallacy is called an Ad Hominem or personal attack fallacy. Kemerling (2004) defines an Ad Hominem fallacy as, “The informal fallacy of supposing that a proposition should be denied because of some disqualifying feature of the person who affirms it.” The following is an example of this type of fallacy from Wikipedia (2004): "Jack is wrong when he says there is no God because he is Continue...

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Downes (2003) provides the following example of this fallacy: "How can you say that's out It was so close, and besides, I'm down 10 games to two. One may hear things like, "We should really do this project for my department because I 'm afraid that my area is being looked at for a reduction. The person making the comment may have stereotyped Jack or diminished his credibility based on that circumstance but, regardless, being in jail is not a direct indicator of level of knowledge. Retrieved August 8, 2004, from http:encyclopedia. The last fallacy is the Appeal to Pity fallacy. When applied to the working environment, this fallacy might be seen when giving estimates for project timelines. In a work environment, one can see this type of fallacy when project sponsors attempt to have their projects move up in priority because of their department's shortcomings.


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