Fallacy/undermine your discussionopponent

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Undermine your discussionopponent: 20 errors in reasoning to catch him

Its not only useful to recognize the 29 propagandarules (Dutch) which are used to transfer political or economical manipulations. Also qualify yourself for detecting errors in reasoning in statements from politicians and economists. Hereunder you find the 20 most used ones…

The 20 most made errors in reasoning

1. Dichotomous thinking

Also known as black-white thinking; looking from a situation in extremes, only involving the extreme possibilities in an evaluation instead of considering a situation as a continuation;

2. Maximazing or minimizing

Blowing up to unreasonable proporations or minimizing an argument, a certain aspect of a discussion or to be evaluated situation;

3. Selective disqualifying

Focus on extreme destructive or argueing away at solely one side of argumentation or from a certain situation; unbalanced reasoning;

4. Selective abstraction

Excessive fuss-making of a detail which is drawn out of context, and leaving the full picture out of observation;

5. Selective attribution

Judging own arguments or situation based on logic circumstances while explaining those from the other person as expressions or qualities of his being or character; confidently attributing negative expressions to a person or situation, without considering more likely possibilities;

6. Eyeflap-thinking

Partial thinking; completely supressing certain arguments, aspects from a discussion or to be evaluated situation;

7. Overgeneralizing

Drawing far-reaching consequences which are out of proporation to the used arguments or logic evaluation of a certain situation;

8. Casuitric thinking

Over-emphasize a case of the past; making a global statement on the basis of a a one-time event;

9. Junctive reasoning

Evaluating a situation by connecting several observations to each other which in fact are unrelated; drawing far-reaching conclusions by confidently causal relations, without considering other, more likely possibilities;

10. Personalizing

Using argumentum ad hominem, thinking based on evalutions about the person instead of the arguments used by him; Not playing on the ball, but on the man; making the discussion personally or applying arguments on the (also: own) person;

11. Stigmatizing

Slamming a negative label based on very global evaluations (labeling), without putting attention to clues which could lead to a less disastrous conclusion;

12. Pejorative associating

Judging arguments or a to be evaluated situation based on negative associations with elements which don’t or almost don’t got anything to do with the argument or to be evaluated situation (“Guilty by association”); Making suspected;

13. Hostile thinking

Also known as paranoid reasoning; putting arguments or personalia in a bad daylight or evaluating a situation in malicious terms, without putting attention to other, more reasonable clues and more likely possibilities;

14. Straw-man interpreting

Constructing a view based on very subjective interpretations to judge arguments or a to be evaluated situation (building a “strawman”), project this on the situation, the argument or the discussionopponent and fire this upon that;

15. Thought reading

Filling in; firmly appearing to know what the thoughts of the other person were are gonna be, without evaluating more likely possibilities of the to be evaluated situation; putting words in the mouth of the discussionopponent;

16. Emotional reasining

Asserting something is true based on a feeling which is strongly believed;

17. Apodictic reasoning

Dogmatic reasoning; reasoning based on commonplace (statements which are only expected in specific communities); believing so holy in the truth of a statement while assuming that this statement is believed without futher evidence;

18. Speculative reasoning

Also known as “if …, then …” reasoning; evaluating a situation based on a firm believe in elements which could (have) taken place if a specific, mostly not very realistic conditions were (or will be) satisfied, without delivering those conditions;

19. Thinking in apocaliptic scenario’s

Building a negative future expectation while ignoring or without considering other, more likely possiblities;

20. Thinking in terms of prohibition and commandments

Excessive strict moralized thinking; most of the time such thoughts are expressed in terms as “should” or “ought”; there’s a compelling idea which sort of arguments and discussiontechniques should be used or how a situation should be evaluated;


The above text is public domain and is translated by User:dpi from Dutch to English both under permission from the original author, Ernst Naber

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