Tuesday, April 09, 2013

A Bwahad Argument for Anything

I, at least, had fun in my MCCC Logic class tonight. I'm teaching on informal logical fallacies; especially: 1) fallacies of irrelevant premises; 2) fallacies with unacceptable premises; and 3) persuaders (rhetorical moves).
I really like teaching this section. The text I use is excellent on, e.g., my favorite all-time informal logical fallacy: the genetic fallacy. What a cool fallacy! What a great example of ill-logic (yes, two 'l's).

Ad hominem fallacies abound on the internet. Facebook is a breeding ground for them; log in and watch them multiply like bunnies. Ad hominem arguments have irrelevant premises. As I was teaching this tonight I thought of an ad hominem argument, which went like this:

1. Bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-haaaaaaa!
2. !!!!!!!!!!!!!
3. Therefore, (Belief X) is stupid. (More bwa-ha-ha-ha-ing...)

My class seemed to enjoy this form of irrationality. So I present it now to you. Premises 1 and 2 are irrelevant to the truth of Belief X (whatever X signifies). Hopefully my students understood this part!