Blog Posts from August, 2011

I Reject His Argument: A Buffet of Logical Fallacies

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

Testing is about not being fooled, and being fooled often starts with fooling yourself. A while back on Twitter, I posted some of these little examples of problems in argumentation, most of which include some logical fallacy or another. It’s a fun game; add your own!

  • I reject his argument because 73.154% of the time, he uses misleadingly precise data.
  • I reject his argument because he’s appealing to authority, and Jerry Weinberg told me that you shouldn’t do that.
  • I reject his argument because by the time he’s done, he’ll have affirmed the consequent.
  • I reject his argument because he uses false dichotomies, and either you reject those completely or you don’t.
  • I reject his argument because, just as everyone else says, he has a tendency to jump on the bandwagon.
  • I reject his argument because he always argues in tautologies that I reject.
  • I reject his argument because he hangs out with guys who accuse other people of guilt by association. (My colleague Ben Kelly adds: You know who else does that? That’s right: Hitler.)
  • I reject his argument because he won’t admit that he’s a control freak.
  • I reject his argument because he’s always speaking in absolutes.
  • I reject his argument because he’s appealing to the slippery slope argument, and if you let a guy do that once…
  • I reject his argument because he’s indecisive. Although, it’s possible that maybe he isn’t.
  • I reject his argument because he’s just the kind of idiot who would use an ad hominem attack.
  • I reject his argument because, like 90% of the population, he uses made-up statistics.
  • I reject his argument because, like 90% of the population, he uses mathematics more ineptly than the remaining 20% do.
  • I reject his argument because, as you can see from this list I’ve prepared, he’s cherry-picked the data in every case.
  • I reject his argument because he’s only a theoretical actor that I’ve posited, not a real person, and therefore unconvincing, or at least he would be if he were real.
  • I reject his arguments because I consider the evaluative bias inherent in language, whereas he simply rants and raves.
  • I reject his argument for one reason and one reason only: he doesn’t believe in multiple paths of causation.
  • I reject his argument because after I do that, he places effect before cause.
  • I reject his argument because he argues using non-sequiturs. Plus he doesn’t like fish.
  • I reject his argument because he’s always using this “holier than thou” tactic, and I’m a better man than that.
  • I reject his argument because he’s the kind of person who always makes the Fundamental Attribution Error.
  • I would reject his arguments if he weren’t so theoretical all the time.
  • I reject his argument because he uses argumentum ad absurdem, and the next thing you know, he’ll be using nuclear warheads.
  • I reject his argument that I’m begging the question, because I have my reasons.
  • I reject his argument because I know he thinks he can read people’s minds.
  • I reject his argument because he exhibited anchoring bias in one of his arguments once, and you just can’t go changing your opinion about people like that.
  • I reject his argument because he’s claiming that confirmation bias is different from assimilation bias, when I know they’re the same thing, and everything I’ve read says so.
  • I reject his argument because he’s just making an assertion, and not backing it up with evidence like I’m doing now.
  • I reject his argument because I’ve thought about 100% of the subject, and he hasn’t.