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No Nonsense

Anti-pseudoscience, anti-woo, pro science, pro critical thinking, no conspiracy theories, no spin. Count the logical fallacies. No Nonsense!

Members: 361
Latest Activity: 16 hours ago

"Keep an open mind – but not so open that your brain falls out" -unknown

"Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence." -- Carl Sagan

"What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence." -- Christopher Hitchens

What is a logical fallacy? All arguments have the same basic structure: A therefore B. They begin with one or more premises (A), which is a fact or assumption upon which the argument is based. They then apply a logical principle (therefore) to arrive at a conclusion (B). An example of a logical principle is that of equivalence. For example, if you begin with the premises that A=B and B=C, you can apply the logical principle of equivalence to conclude that A=C. A logical fallacy is a false or incorrect logical principle. An argument that is based upon a logical fallacy is therefore not valid. It is important to note that if the logic of an argument is valid then the conclusion must also be valid, which means that if the premises are all true then the conclusion must also be true. Valid logic applied to one or more false premises, however, leads to an invalid argument. Also, if an argument is not valid the conclusion may, by chance, still be true. For a more thorough discussion of logical fallacies and how to structure a logical argument, see the New England Skeptical Society's article, How To Argue.

Top 20 Logical Fallacies (in alphabetical order) taken from -

The Skeptics' Guide To The Universe

The New England Skeptical Society The Skeptics' Guide To The Universe Science-Based Medicine
The James Randi Educational Foundation
Propaganda
snopes.com
Bad Science by Ben Goldacre
Simon Singh and his fight to mend British libel laws
Professor Richard Wiseman
PZ Myers' Pharyngula
Dr. Phil Plait and Bad Astronomy
Skeptic Blog
Michael Shermer's Baloney Detection Kit
The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan
The Skeptics' Dictionary
List of cognitive biases
Don Watson - Weasel Words
QuackWatch
A List of Fallacious Arguments

Chat #NoNonsense

"No skeptic, to my knowledge, ever made a major scientific discovery or advanced the welfare of others."

-- Deepak Chopra (yes, he actually said that)

"The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds the most discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it!) but That's funny..." -Isaac Asimov



The scientific world view is full of awe and wonder. Understanding how truly awesome the universe is – in its elegant complexity, its staggering beauty, and the many intricate systems of which it is comprised – gives a profound feeling of connectedness and sparks the imagination. And it has the advantage of being real. -Steven Novella



The glory which is built upon a lie soon becomes a most unpleasant incumbrance. How easy it is to make people believe a lie, and how hard it is to undo that work again.
— Mark Twain

Discussion Forum

Anger-Incitement Playbook

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Ruth Anthony-Gardner on Wednesday. 14 Replies

Climate Denial Based on Projection of Venal Motives

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Grinning Cat Sep 12. 1 Reply

Reason Evolved to Win Arguments - not Reason Clearly

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by tom sarbeck Sep 10. 1 Reply

Direct Mind Access

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Idaho Spud Aug 16. 15 Replies

Firehose beats Fact-Check

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Bertold Brautigan Aug 6. 4 Replies

Weaponized Fake Conspiracy

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Grinning Cat Aug 4. 4 Replies

Teach Wisdom

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner Jun 3. 0 Replies

The Science of Mind Manipulation

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Joseph P Apr 10. 22 Replies

Blue Lies Divide

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner Mar 26. 0 Replies

Visceral Vernacular is Great Oration

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Bertold Brautigan Mar 19. 7 Replies

Hyperbolic Discounting

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Joan Denoo Mar 12. 3 Replies

How to Mind-Capture a Nation

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner Mar 8. 0 Replies

Post-Truth "Reality" Tactics

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Joseph P Feb 15. 15 Replies

Snag-Attention Government

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Grinning Cat Feb 14. 3 Replies

The Blowfish Fallacy

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Grinning Cat Feb 13. 1 Reply

Snake Oil of Doom

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Bertold Brautigan Jan 31. 4 Replies

Media Bubbles - Truth versus Security

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Plinius Jan 15. 4 Replies

Misleading with truth is Paltering

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Grinning Cat Jan 14. 1 Reply

Comment Wall

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Comment by sacha on November 21, 2009 at 10:10pm
here you are, Daniel


now get on with your work debunking the woo!
Comment by Daniel W on November 21, 2009 at 10:03pm
I feel left out. My favorite cartoon was Rocky & Bullwinkle. But I'll get over it, since there is a preponderance of scoobyphilia here and we all have to compromise for the greater good.
Comment by Glenn Sogge on November 21, 2009 at 7:53pm
->felch: The best way to handle "specific nonsense angles" would be to deconstruct specific documents or posts to show the tools in use. (I think this is called 'fisking' now on the interwebs.) Are there some major documents (in the sense of important or canonical, not length) that we could do this on? Or maybe we post/link something and ask for a detailed working out of what's wrong?
Comment by Glenn Sogge on November 21, 2009 at 7:43pm
A useful video to learn from and to pass along to others that could be helped by it is the RDF TV Baloney Detection Kit by Michael Shermer that's been here for awhile.
Comment by sacha on November 21, 2009 at 7:40pm
Oh and Scooby Doo thanks you too
Comment by sacha on November 21, 2009 at 7:39pm
Hello all! Specific links is what I had in mind. Let's dissect each specific nonsense. These links you have provided are a great addition. I'll add some of them to the top of the group. Thanks for joining me.
Comment by Glenn Sogge on November 21, 2009 at 7:12pm
See also the Critical Thinking mini-lessons from the Skeptic's Dictionary

For homework lessons, test out your knowlege on the Hundreds of Proofs of God's Existence page.

The Bad Moves page over at Butterflies and Wheels has some interesting articles by philosopher Julian Baggini.

Although not exactly fallacies, cognitive biases sometimes explain why people argue in fallacious ways. Check out the big list over at the Wiki.
Comment by Trance Gemini on November 21, 2009 at 6:44pm
Great idea for a group though!
Comment by Trance Gemini on November 21, 2009 at 6:42pm
The Ad Hominem description is a bit off. This is one that people commonly are mistaken on.

Ad Hom is where you say a person is wrong because of something that amounts to a personal attack.

For eg. the following are insulting or rude but not Ad Homs.
1. Person B is a dick.
2. Person B believes X and that's a stupid thing to belief so they're stupid.

The following is a correct description of the format of the Ad Hom.

"Ad hominem" is an association fallacy. It relies on a flaw regarding the logical association. Simply put, ad hominem works like this:

(1) Person A's argument is X.
(2) Person B makes an irrelevant attack on person A
(3) Therefore, person A's argument is false.

Source: Ad Hominem

Essentially Person As argument becomes false because of the personal attack.

Eg. You're an immoral atheist so what could you know about the Bible or morality.
Comment by Jaume on November 21, 2009 at 6:36pm
 

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