This is among the best introduction I've seen to identifying the most common fallacies used to trick us. A perfect resource for beginners, and overview for old hands.

15 Logical Fallacies You Should Know Before Getting Into a Debate

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Ruth, a few words about David Ferrer as an author.

While knowing these logical fallacies is important, Ferrer’s l-o-n-g description of his first fallacy reminded me that some authors will not say in 100 words what they can say in 1000 words. That alone can persuade me to look for another author.

And yet, in his title Ferrer wants one word, ...Should...., to persuade, a task that requires many words.

Whether he or his publisher chose the title, 15 Logical Fallacies Protect Yourself Before.... would have persuaded me to open the book, ...and find his 1000 words.

Ferrer is indeed wordy!

I glanced through the web page, and skipped the videos. It's useful that he shows, for example, various kinds of (non)causation fallacies, like “Jimmy isn’t at school today. He must be on a family trip” (false cause or non causa pro causa) as well as the better known post hoc and correlational (cum hoc) fallacies. I'd thought of false cause only as a more general jumping to conclusions.

An example of one of those other causal fallacies that I particularly like, given in an intro psych class: a study of elementary school students showed a strong, significant positive correlation between the lengths of the kids' middle fingers and their mental age as measured on an IQ test. (And that result would easily be replicated at virtually every other elementary school.) Does having long fingers make you smart, or does being smarter somehow make your fingers longer? :-)

Another summary of logical fallacies, with summaries and individual links for two dozen types:

(Circular reasoning should be particularly familiar to some of us from religious arguments!)

And for sports fans, the imgur picture collection Logical Fallacy Ref has an American football referee "calling out" various fallacies.

And from somewhere on the internet, I'd picked up a logical fallacy bingo card. (There's criticism of some details at /r/atheism on Reddit. Still might be fun to see how quickly a politician or preacher hits a "BINGO!")




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