One Holy Commandment: Thou Shalt Not Commit Logical Fallacies

Logical Fallacies

Click to open the big readable one. Read. Learn. Obey. You have been commanded.

Kinda cool to see that Stephan Downes’ Guide to the Logical Fallacies is still up since I fist began referencing it in 1995. There, you can find a definition, examples and proof for each one.

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  1. Can we make one more commandment for people? Thou shalt not use “begs the question” to mean ” raises the question.”

    • I hear people say this/see them write this often, and they have no idea what the phrase “question begging” means. My local FM talker’s afternoon host does this every single day, several times per hour over a four-hour show.

    • Gene:

      “Thou shalt not use “begs the question” to mean ” raises the question.””

      Yes please. Pet Peeve for about 10 years & counting. And I even hear it in major media. Always makes me face palm.

    • It’s one definition of “beg the question.”

      1(of a fact or action) raise a point that has not been dealt with; invite an obvious question: some definitions of mental illness beg the question of what constitutes normal behaviour

      2assume the truth of an argument or proposition to be proved, without arguing it.

      • I attribute that to simply buckling under pressure.

        The real reason people don’t use “beg the question” properly is because it’s one of the logical fallacies that’s a bit more esoteric in terms of fully understanding it and detecting the fallacy.

      • Could you guys please explain the difference to us non-english speakers? Kind of hard to find “the truth” when even the oxford dictionary says it’s alright :/

      • Nvm, found a pretty good explanation on wikipedia. Think before you speak should be replace by search before you write in this modern age 😛

  2. Paul Riemann says:

    Nice graphic. Too bad it doesn’t have the fallacies of induction and asserting the consequent. But then again, I understand why, as they tend to completely undermine the scientific method and the empiricists claim to have any knowledge at all. LOL!

  3. Dr. Curmudgon Gee says:


    another pet peeve of mine:

    “The fact of the matter is…”

    when the speaker is merely expression his opinions. it always sounds like he’s talking down the listener or audience.

    • “The fact of the matter is…” is annoying even when said before stating a fact. No need for the preamble.

      “The fact of the matter is, boil the soup spoil the soup.” Just state the fact.

      As for the logical fallacies, there ought to be one for those who accuse others of them without knowing what they mean. Oh wait, there is one: wanker.

  4. This guy addresses some diet fallacies

    He looks good for 54


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