Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

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Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby BlackBird » Fri Jul 05, 2013 7:39 am

Hi all

Since logicial fallacies crop up here from time to time I thought it might be helpful to our community to post this image that I stumbled across on facebook. I think it's very
well done and shows how a seemingly agreeable piece of writing or speech is in fact a fallacious argument. There are a number of benefits to be had by knowing your fallacies, it helps you formulate your own arguments better and you can more easily spot holes in other's arguments.

The image won't show very well on here and it cuts it off halfway across, leaving about 50% of the fallacy explanations, so here's the image in a link:
http://infobeautiful2.s3.amazonaws.com/ ... rriage.png

edit I've uploaded it as an attachment so we'll see if that will work without stretching the page.
Attachments
RhetoricalFallacy_SameSexMarriage.png
RhetoricalFallacy_SameSexMarriage.png (423.95 KiB) Viewed 355 times
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby Sam Vara » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:15 am

Since logicial fallacies crop up here from time to time


I guess I'm guilty, but let's start at the top. Did the Buddha commit any of them?
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby Coyote » Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:17 am

All this talk of undermining and re-defining the meaning of marriage is nonsense, any casual look at the history of marriage will tell quite a different picture.
Why can't they just simply say they oppose same-sex marriage because it conflicts with their specific belief about the purpose of marriage? Which is hardly ancient and universal, especially in modern society. I guess it doesn't come off with the same kind of authority...

Edit: as interesting as it is to see other peoples logical fallacies, I'm sure they can be applied to many political arguments, no matter what side of a debate you are on.
"If beings knew, as I know, the results of giving & sharing, they would not eat without having given, nor would the stain of miserliness overcome their minds. Even if it were their last bite, their last mouthful, they would not eat without having shared."
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby David N. Snyder » Fri Jul 05, 2013 6:46 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Since logicial fallacies crop up here from time to time


I guess I'm guilty, but let's start at the top. Did the Buddha commit any of them?


Good question. I don't think so, not much anyway from what I can recall. There were some instances where he rebukes someone; which might be called skillful means or might be called ad hominem.

One monk performed immoral acts and stated that "I feel neither ease nor discomfort, thus there will be no offense for me." The Buddha responded, "whether this foolish man felt or did not feel, there is an offense." (Vinaya, Suttavibhanga 3.36)

The Dhamma, the teachings themselves, are logical and in general do not have any formal/informal fallacies, in my opinion.
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby daverupa » Fri Jul 05, 2013 7:49 pm

Sam Vara wrote:Did the Buddha commit any of them?


Jayatilleke addresses this, to an extent, in his Early Buddhist Theory of Knowledge, for what it's worth. The logic of debate in ancient India is an interesting thing to study.

Here is the root list used in the OP; good reading. What if we all strove to rid our posts here, and our other speech acts in the world and in our heads, of these features...
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby Sylvester » Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:06 am

daverupa wrote:Here is the root list used in the OP; good reading. What if we all strove to rid our posts here, and our other speech acts in the world and in our heads, of these features...


+1. Brings back fond memories of my classes in Logic.

But it's a close fight between fallacies versus akusala sankappa. Unless engaged in deliberately, non-sequitors are probably less blameworthy than the āsavas.
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby BlackBird » Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:08 am

Sylvester wrote:
daverupa wrote:Here is the root list used in the OP; good reading. What if we all strove to rid our posts here, and our other speech acts in the world and in our heads, of these features...


+1. Brings back fond memories of my classes in Logic.

But it's a close fight between fallacies versus akusala sankappa. Unless engaged in deliberately, non-sequitors are probably less blameworthy than the āsavas.


+ 2 If I had known about that I would have just posted that instead - That's brilliant!

Thanks Daverupa.
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby PeterB » Sat Jul 06, 2013 8:00 am

I have seen these logical fallacies misused.. :smile:
The ' Appeal To Authority ' is particularly likely to be incorrectly applied. It is quite clear that the fallacy lies in appealing to unreliable or untested authority..but I have seen it applied on Buddhist forums to recorded remarks by Ajahn Chah..and even the Buddha.
The issue appears to be that a section of modern thought rejects the possibility of authority per se.
' Appeal To Tradition ' is similarly misunderstood or misappropriated..the fallacy refers to things done or views held ' because they have always been done that way.'
But again I have seen it used to refute actions or views , simply BECAUSE they can be seen as 'traditional'..even when there are good and valid reasons why they have become traditional. Because they have evolved over time and are effective.
Again modern thought can tend to reject ALL tradition.
Last edited by PeterB on Sat Jul 06, 2013 8:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby Aloka » Sat Jul 06, 2013 8:16 am

daverupa wrote:

Here is the root list used in the OP; good reading. What if we all strove to rid our posts here, and our other speech acts in the world and in our heads, of these features...


I think if we did, internet forums would certainly have fewer posts in some of the more 'heated' topics in which a few posters can sometimes become quite insulting and intimidating towards others. Especially when 'the pack', mentality occurs towards a person with differing views, which if its happening, can be quite sad to read .
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby binocular » Sat Jul 06, 2013 5:17 pm

PeterB wrote:I have seen these logical fallacies misused.

If one tries hard enough, one can interpret pretty much anything as an informal logical fallacy.

It's only formal logical fallacies that are objective and fallacies in the right meaning of the word. Informal ones (which is what is usually meant by "logical fallacy") are quite relative and contextual.


Of course, then there is The Art of Being Right.



daverupa wrote:What if we all strove to rid our posts here, and our other speech acts in the world and in our heads, of these features...

I think that most informal fallacies are committed due to weak generosity and in lack of goodwill. Also, often when people are accused of committing informal fallacies, those acusations are due to weak generosity and in lack of goodwill - the critic simply doesn't pay attention to what the other person is saying, and instead jumps to conclusions.
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby Nyana » Sat Jul 06, 2013 8:34 pm

PeterB wrote:The ' Appeal To Authority ' is particularly likely to be incorrectly applied. It is quite clear that the fallacy lies in appealing to unreliable or untested authority..but I have seen it applied on Buddhist forums to recorded remarks by Ajahn Chah..and even the Buddha.
The issue appears to be that a section of modern thought rejects the possibility of authority per se.
' Appeal To Tradition ' is similarly misunderstood or misappropriated..the fallacy refers to things done or views held ' because they have always been done that way.'
But again I have seen it used to refute actions or views , simply BECAUSE they can be seen as 'traditional'..even when there are good and valid reasons why they have become traditional. Because they have evolved over time and are effective.
Again modern thought can tend to reject ALL tradition.

Indeed. Cynicism, doubt, and unremitting skepticism are quite common -- probably more pervasive than actual logical fallacies.
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Re: Logical Fallacies in Cardinal's Speech

Postby Sam Vara » Sat Jul 06, 2013 9:03 pm

What if we all strove to rid our posts here, and our other speech acts in the world and in our heads, of these features...


Not sure. But depending on how deluded our original axioms and assumptions are, we might just go to a bad place more efficiently.
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