It’s Friday and you know what that means… It’s time once again for your #FridayFallacy!
As always, we will begin with an example to give you a chance to guess the fallacy, and then we’ll name it and explain how it works and how to counter it for the next time you come across it.
This week’s fallacy is visual! See the picture, then scroll down the the explanation.
This week’s fallacy is the Straw Man fallacy. This fallacy is committed when “a person simply ignores a person’s actual position and substitutes a distorted, exaggerated or misrepresented version of that position” (The Nizkor Project). It looks like this:
1. Person A has position X.
2. Person B presents position Y (which is a distorted version of X).
3. Person B attacks position Y.
4. Therefore X is false/incorrect/flawed.
Here’s an everyday example:
Bill and Ted are arguing about dinner plans:
Ted: “Let’s go out to dinner. I don’t want to cook tonight.”
Bill: “We just went out the other day. Do we have to go out every night?”
Ted: “That was last weekend, and I never said anything about going out every night.”
The easiest way to catch a straw-man fallacy is simply to listen very carefully for the exact argument being asserted. Sometimes it helps to restate it for the person and check in with them: “To make sure I understand your position, you are saying that ____. Is that right?” To counter one, just be frank and correct the misstatement, and make sure to offer that you believe your claim is not only accurate but reasonable. Sarcasm and beating around the bush tend not to work well to counter this fallacy, although they can be effective in the right situation. But, because it depends on the fallacious party marking an outrageous claim, you already have the high ground, and all you have to do is keep it by showing that what you’re saying is, in fact, reasonable.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s fallacy! Have a great weekend!
Thanks to our very own Alexa Blumenstock for this “fixed” version of the graphic:
The sad thing is when you give tested information to a person and they reject it based upon the foolish notions of the popular opinion. This is sheep-like behavior and is to be rejected by the forward thinking populous based upon their fallacious thinking. I am sad to say that my own wife had a conversation with her brother based upon unproven facts that she passed off as legitimate and ignored my addition of tested facts in favor of her own bullshit suppositions. She ignored statistics regarding genetically modified materials and their proliferation related to individuals selling off land that they could develop themselves and vilified GMO purveyors instead of lazy landowners selling plots of land at premium prices.
Yes I know of the team of lawyers that Monsanto employs 24/7 and the bully tactics that they use, but I also know of the laziness of people who own land and sell to large land owners expecting them to not use the land for GMO purposes. They pontificate and exaggerate the causes that they support and NEVER tell their people that they themselves sold the company the land that is now being used for GMO production. The hypocrisy is in the fact that the owner never meant to use the land themselves to yield crops, but in the expectation that the crop would never be used to grow GMO foods.
These questions were never asked because that would give rise to arguments of a moral nature, so it was assumed that the land would be used to just grow food. The seller knew that the buyer had liberty to use the land for means other than to just grow natural crops, but the seller never asked because that cleared culpability in any other incident. This leaves the ignorant farmer able to file later lawsuits in federal court over things that they knew to be fact which gives them a way to obtain further payment related to the claim of ignorance of land usage! This shit is fucking brilliant!!
Grass roots action could circumvent this GMO menace as long as local farmers hold onto local lands and use it for local crops! If they get greedy, they can always file federal lawsuits in court to claim ignorance of things that they already know and profit from these lies! Awesome! The people complain about corporations while acting out of greed as corporations do and hold corporations responsible!! Hypocrisy!
Please leave comments s to my fallacious thinking and tell me if I totally missed the mark!
The video does not follow the debate content between Alex Botten and Sye Ten Bruggencate, but the audio is incredible in that it shows how sheeple are convinced by the smoke and mirror parlor tricks of Bruggencate. This person asks the question, “How do you know,” so many times in irrelevancy that I cannot count! Circuitous argument is how debaters trick sheep into believing their bullshit arguments. 25 min in the only proof that Bruggencate cites is the most unprovable document produced, the Christian Bible!
ABUJA, Nigeria – World pressure on Nigeria is mounting over its slow reaction and failure to rescue hundreds of schoolgirls kidnapped by terrorists in a remote part of the country.
Tuesday, President Obama called the abductions “outrageous” and “heartbreaking” and said Nigeria has agreed to accept U.S. law enforcement and military assistance.
“We’ve already sent in a team to Nigeria. They’ve accepted our help through a combination of military, law enforcement and other agencies who are going in, trying to identify where in fact these girls might be and provide them help,” Obama told ABC News.
Distraught parents of the stolen children have charged that officials stalled on action to free them, and international condemnation has grown amid protests in major cities. Demands for action have increased on social media, especially through the Twitter hashtag #BringBackOurGirls.
More than 300 girls were abducted. Of that number, 276 remain in captivity and 53 escaped. Tuesday, an additional eight girls were abducted from a village near a terrorist stronghold in the area.
The schoolgirls have been held for three weeks by the Muslim terrorist organization Boko Haram, which has killed thousands of Christians and Muslims in an attempt to bring strict Islamic law to all of Nigeria. It declared plans to sell the girls or have them married to its members.
“We’ve always identified them as one of the worst local or regional terrorist organizations there is out there,” Obama told NBC News. “And I can only imagine what the parents are going through.”
U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., called the kidnappings an “unthinkable tragedy” and “an offense to the conscience of the world.”
“The threat by Boko Haram’s leader to sell them in the marketplace reflects the utter absence of humanity,” Pelosi said.
Protesters have begged for international help, and some Nigerians blame their government.
“The government cannot sit back and watch how these little girls suffer. Their families are traumatized,” said Nigerian Sen. Ali Ndume, who represents the region. “The government needs to do something extra, even if seeking external support, to ensure these girls are rescued.”
Edmond Keller, a UCLA political science professor specializing in Africa, said the episode is part of continuing low-intensity conflicts in the northeastern part of Nigeria, and Nigerians have regarded terrorist violence as commonplace.
“It took something as dramatic as the kidnapping of these young women to really get people’s attention,” Keller said. “Nigerians themselves have been loudly complaining about the government not doing much, but they hadn’t protested in the streets up until recently.”
He did not see racism as a factor in the slow international reaction to the kidnappings, but he said that in general, the West is more concerned about human rights in Ukraine, Syria and other world hot spots than in Africa.
“There’s a certain amount of racism involved in the tendency to look upon African conflicts as being normal and being a part of the way Africans behave, as opposed to something whites need to be concerned with,” he said.
Girls from the Chibok Government Girls Secondary School are the latest victims in a long-running Islamist militancy straining relations between a north dominated by Muslims and a Christian-centric south.
Boko Haram is especially opposed to educating girls. Its name translates as “Western education is forbidden.”
The Chibok girls school is in the remote and sparsely populated northeastern region of the country, Africa’s largest with a population of 170 million. Like all schools in Borno state, Chibok, an elite academy of both Muslim and Christian girls, had been closed because of increasingly deadly attacks by Boko Haram. It had reopened to allow final-year students to take exams.
Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan said at first the government did not know where the girls were, then said he needed better troops from the West to save them.
Family members are frantic, pleading for international assistance from the United States and the United Kingdom.
“We have heard from members of the forest community where they took the girls. … They said there had been mass marriages, and the girls are being shared out as wives among the Boko Haram militants,” Samson Dawah, whose niece was among those in the mass kidnapping, told The Guardian newspaper.
In New York, London and major Nigerian cities such as Lagos, the capital Abuja and the northern city of Kaduna, protesters in the streets are pressuring the government.
“Bring back our girls — alive!” chanted demonstrators camped outside the Onikan Stadium in Lagos.
After weeks of silence, Nigerian officials promised to step up action. President Jonathan vowed to find the schoolgirls with help from the United States.
“Everything must be done” to free them, he said.
Nigerian Interior Minister Abba Moro told the BBC that the government had to act in a “discreet” way because the militants had threatened to kill the girls if “certain steps” were taken.
Nii Akuetteh, an independent Washington analyst who specializes in Africa, says the government is simply unable to rise to the threat posed by Boko Haram.
“The government can’t do anything because of the capabilities of the security services,” he said. “For five years, the security services have (not been coping well) with Boko Haram.
“The city (of Abuja) is expecting to host an international conference, and still two bombs have been detonated,” he said. “It fits the pattern that they are simply unable to cope.”
Under Boko Haram’s interpretation of Sharia law, women shouldn’t be in school, they should be at home raising children and taking care of their husbands. In an hour-long video obtained by Agence France-Presse, a man identifying himself as Boko Haram’s leader, Abubakar Shekau, claimed responsibility for the abductions and threatened to sell the girls.
“By Allah, I will sell them in the marketplace,” he says in the video, in which he refers to the captives as his slaves. The video showed militants firing rifles in the air and crying, “Allahu akbar!” or “God is great.”
The country has been beset by instability and increasing violence, and Boko Haram is responsible for a spate of bombings in the past year. The group orchestrated a car bomb attack in Abuja on May 1, killing at least 19 people and injuring 60 more. In April, 70 people died in a bomb blast.
Boko Haram murdered 59 schoolboys in February. It separated the boys from the girls, instructing the girls to leave the school and get married before sending them home. The boys were then killed. The movement could be responsible for more than 1,500 deaths this year, according to Amnesty International, a watchdog group.
Africa specialist Ayo Johnson attributes Boko Haram’s ability to continually attack and intimidate to its omnipresence in the country.
“Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan summed it best when in 2012 he said, ‘Boko Haram has infiltrated the government.It has infiltrated the police, the security forces and even the Cabinet,’ ” Johnson said. “And I think that summed it up, that Boko Haram was an enemy from within … that was going nowhere and was bent on causing problems for the Nigerian government.”
As a confirmed skeptic, I have had to tell many, and I mean MANY two legged sheep to keep their creepy star-stalking bullshit to themselves. I am speaking of those vacuous idiots that are living vicariously through those out-of-touch bastards referred to as ‘celebrities.’ I, of course, refer to them as overpaid flotsam in need of a good plane crash, ( about ten airliners full ).or brain transplant. After about a good ten years of being famous, most of these overgrown children seem to just forget that anyone else besides them exist.George Clooney pontificates about the suffering in Darfur while sucking the toes of beautiful women half his age on the Amalfi Coast. Gwyneth Paltrow regales us with how well her trainer is whipping her into shape and about her “conscious uncoupling” from her deluded other half all while telling us how goddamned hard it is to be a superstar, SHUT YOUR WHINING HOLE GWYNNIE!
My only concern about these trained monkeys is that they dance on cue to entertain me when I need it and convince me that they are the character that they are portraying! ‘Ol Gwynnie better shut her cake-hole before people start to think that the best role she ever had was having her scalp peeled back over her head as a corpse in Contagion! Also, the sheeple! As usual, they will question nothing fed to them by the magic box in the living room. They just turn on network news and the reality programs and hope that Phil Robertson will go off on those evil homos again or that he’ll say some other closed-minded Gawd-speak in an effort to piss off ‘them damned librulz.’ I just shake my head in wonderment that this kind of mindless drivel is the main type of entertainment enjoyed in the free world today. It’s just pablum for the masses meant to further lull them to sleep so that they won’t pay attention to the important issues such as clean energy right now or the fact that Duke Energy in North Carolina is getting away scott free with dumping pure poison into the Cape Fear river right under the nose of the EPA. Don’t worry about the real issues people, J-Lo just got another manicure and we need to know how it turned out!
Hell, I spend so much time telling people that I don’t care what their favorite celeb did today that I should just wear a damned button and be done with it! I am too busy trying to learn something useful EVERY SINGLE DAY to care about what a spoiled brat did on his/her vacation in the Swiss Alps, but most people actually don’t realize this. They spend their time hating their own boring lives instead of fighting to eradicate injustice in the world and prevent corporate takeover of the nation as well as it’s piecing out to multinational interest through the elimination of education and infrastructure! If even 20% of these sheep pulled their heads out of the sand and dusted off their underused vision, it would send ripples through the country and to the billionaires that a change was occurring, but they know that the dummying down of humanity in the U.S is working perfectly and when things really go to shit the remaining folks will just kill each other for the remaining resources.
A bleak outlook indeed, and I will continue to fight it with activism and skepticism slowly feeding the message of common sense logic to the sleeping masses. I hope that some will awaken, but I fear that people have allowed themselves to be taken over the point of return and that they will blindly walk into the corporate bug zapper without a fight. I continue to find educated people who look at me as if I’m out of my mind when I say that people of the middle class have been sandwiched in between social and corporate welfare to eliminate any chance of a backlash against the corporate rape of the common citizen. By dividing the numbers their is absolutely NO chance of going Robespierre on their asses virtually eliminating the Constitutional power of the people. Due to the new corporate sponsored Homeland Security laws, the act of using your right to forcibly change your government is now an act of domestic terrorism! Remember past posts involving a camera on every street corner? These weren’t put there to ensure public safety no matter how the political spin doctors play it! They were installed as yet another way to keep tabs on the populace and ensure control and the naysayers cry conspiracy theorist if you point this out! Why? Because it violates their little comfort zone to be a meddler in regime politics. Most prefer to be silent because they don’t want to rock the boat and be singled out by Big Brother! Hell, next thing you know they’ll be calling me Alex Jones Jr. Hopefully not, I’d hate to be lumped in with that loudmouth! I just am totally against sleeping through the sale of my own country!
Well, I’ve said that which I came to say, now it’s time to go back to the T.V and catch Honey Boo Boo! Cracklelackle Alekum my blog brothas and Peace be unto you!
(CNN)– A new video billboard in New York’s Times Square has a message from creationists, “To all of our atheist friends: Thank God you’re wrong.”
The video advertisement at 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue in Manhattan is one of several billboards going up this week in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles, paid for by Answers in Genesis.
Answers in Genesis is best known as the multimillion-dollar Christian ministry behind the Creation Museum outside Cincinnati.
The museum presents the case for Young Earth creationism, following what it says is a literal interpretation of the book of Genesis, which says the Earth was created by God in six days less than 10,000 years ago.
Ken Ham, president of Answers in Genesis, said the idea for the advertisements came from an atheist billboard in Times Square at Christmas.
During the holidays, the American Atheists put up a billboard with images of Santa Claus and Jesus that read: “Keep the Merry, dump the myth.”
“The Bible says to contend for the faith,” Ham said. “We thought we should come up with something that would make a statement in the culture, a bold statement, and direct them to our website.
“We’re not against them personally. We’re not trying to attack them personally, but we do believe they’re wrong,” he said.
“From an atheist’s perspective, they believe when they die, they cease to exist. And we say ‘no, you’re not going to cease to exist; you’re going to spend eternity with God or without God. And if you’re an atheist, you’re going to be spending it without God.’ “
“They refuse to look at the real world. They refuse to look at the evidence we have, and they offer none,” Silverman said. “They might as well be saying, ‘Thank Zeus you’re wrong’ or ‘Thank Thor you’re wrong.’ “
Silverman said he welcomed another competitor to marketplace, noting that after atheists bought a billboard two years ago in Times Square that read “You KNOW it’s a myth,” the Catholic League purchased competing space at the entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel for a sign that read “You KNOW it’s true.”
“I would suggest, if they’re actually trying to attract atheists, they should talk about proof and reason to believe in their god, not just some pithy play on words,” Silverman said.
Ham says part of the goal of the campaign is to draw people to the website for Answers in Genesis, where he offers a lengthy post on his beliefs for the proof of God.
Ham insists that this campaign is in keeping with their overall mission. “We’re a biblical authority ministry. We’re really on about the Bible and the Gospel. Now, we do have a specialty in the area of the creation account and Genesis because that’s where we say God’s word has come under attack.”
Ham said Answers in Genesis made the decision to split its marketing budget for the ministry between a regional campaign for the museum and this billboard campaign, rather than a national campaign.
IRS filings for the ministry in recent years have shown a yearly operating budget of more than $25 million. Ham said the marketing budget is about 2% of that, about $500,000 a year. Though they are waiting for all the bills to come due for this campaign, he said he expected it to cost between $150,000 and $200,000.
Silverman noted that his billboards were not video and cost approximately $25,000 last year. He said another campaign was in the works for this year.
“They’re throwing down the gauntlet, and we’re picking it up,” Silverman said, adding that his group would “slap them in the face” with it.
Ham said that despite criticism from other Christians for being negative and the usual criticisms from secularists he received on his social media accounts, the advertisements have been a success.
“We wanted people talking about them, and we wanted discussion about this. We wanted people thinking about God,” Ham said.
The Creation Museum and the theory of Young Earth creationism are widely reviled by the broader science community.
In a YouTube video posted last year titled “Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children,” Bill Nye the Science Guy slammed creationism, imploring parents not to teach it to their children. “We need scientifically literate voters and taxpayers for the future,” he said. “We need engineers that can build stuff and solve problems.”
For as long as Gallup has conducted the survey, creationism has remained far and away the most popular answer, with 40% to 47% of Americans surveyed saying they believed that God created humans in their present form at one point within the past 10,000 years.
The Creation Museum said it recently welcomed its 2 millionth visitor since its opening in 2007.