Category Archives: Rules of Logic

The genetic fallacy: When is it okay to criticize a source?

Last week, I wrote a post on the hierarchy of scientific evidence which included the figure to the right. In that post, I explained why some types of scientific papers produced more robust results than others. Some people, however, took … Continue reading

Posted in Rules of Logic | Tagged , , , | 17 Comments

Stop accusing me of ad hominem fallacies you stupid idiots

Ad hominem fallacies are among the most common logical fallacies, but they are also among the most misunderstood. Indeed, I often see people falsely accusing their opponent of committing an ad hominem fallacy. Therefore, I am going to explain how … Continue reading

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The Rules of Logic Part 7: Using Consistent Reasoning to Compare Apples and Oranges

Using consistent reasoning simply means that you use the same type of thinking or the same logical structure across your various views and arguments. In other words, the arguments that you use to support one position cannot conflict with the … Continue reading

Posted in Rules of Logic, Vaccines/Alternative Medicine | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

7 easy ways to lose a debate

One of the saddest statistics about my life is the amount of time that I spend pointlessly debating anti-scientists. Having devoted so much time to this endeavor has, however, allowed me to observe certain patterns and trends in their debate … Continue reading

Posted in Global Warming, Rules of Logic, Science of Evolution, Vaccines/Alternative Medicine | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

The Rules of Logic Part 6: Appealing to Authority vs. Deferring to Experts

The appeal to authority fallacy (a.k.a. argument from authority) is easily one of the most common logical fallacies. This is the fallacy that occurs when you base your claim on the people who agree with you rather than on the … Continue reading

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What would it take to convince you that you were wrong?

In debates, I often ask people what it would take to convince them that they were wrong, and, much to my amazement, they frequently tell me that nothing will ever make them change their minds. What’s even more astounding is … Continue reading

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The Rules of Logic Part 5: Occam’s Razor and the Burden of Proof

Occam’s razor, also known as the principle of maximum parsimony, is one of the fundamental guiding principles in both logic and science. It is commonly explained as, “the simplest solution is usually the correct one.” More accurately, it states that, … Continue reading

Posted in Nature of Science, Rules of Logic | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments