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Logical  Fallacy: a error in reasoning
  (adj)     (noun)

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Statement #14 Discussion

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Below is the statement as it appears with the fallacy marked as correct. You can see the totals of most frequent responses to this statement. And after reading the any discussion going on below, you can select your choice(s) for the correct answer. For now, whoever posts each statement can update corrections.
I agree with my opponent that the biggest threat facing this country is weapons of mass destruction in the hands of a terrorist network.
Appeal to the Consequences of a Belief
Argumentum Ad Consequentium

Category: Fallacies of Relevance (Red Herrings) → Distracting Appeals

The Appeal to the Consequences of a Belief is a fallacy that comes in the following patterns:

#1: X is true because if people did not accept X as being true, then there would be negative consequences.
#2: X is false because if people did not accept X as being false, then there would be negative consequences.

#3: X is true because accepting that X is true has positive consequences.
#4: X is false because accepting that X is false has positive consequences.

#5: I wish that X were true, therefore X is true. This is known as Wishful Thinking.
#6: I wish that X were false, therefore X is false. This is known as Wishful Thinking.

This line of "reasoning" is fallacious because the consequences of a belief have no bearing on whether the belief is true or false. For example, if someone were to say "If sixteen-headed purple unicorns don't exist, then I would be miserable, so they must exist", it would be clear that this would not be a good line of reasoning. It is important to note that the consequences in question are the consequences that stem from the belief. It is important to distinguish between a rational reason to believe (RRB) (evidence) and a prudential reason to believe (PRB) (motivation). A RRB is evidence that objectively and logically supports the claim. A PRB is a reason to accept the belief because of some external factor (such as fear, a threat, or a benefit or harm that may stem from the belief) that is relevant to what a person values but is not relevant to the truth or falsity of the claim. The nature of the fallacy is especially clear in the case of Wishful thinking. Obviously, merely wishing that something is true does not make it true. This fallacy differs from the Appeal to Belief fallacy in that the Appeal to Belief involves taking a claim that most people believe that X is true to be evidence for X being true.

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Appeal to Fear
Ad Baculum

AKA Scare Tactics, Appeal to Force

Category: Fallacies of Relevance (Red Herrings) → Distracting Appeals

The Appeal to Fear is a fallacy with the following pattern:

  1. Y is presented (a claim that is intended to produce fear).
  2. Therefore claim X is true (a claim that is generally, but need not be, related to Y in some manner).
This line of "reasoning" is fallacious because creating fear in people does not constitute evidence for a claim.

It is important to distinguish between a rational reason to believe (RRB) (evidence) and a prudential reason to believe(PRB) (motivation). A RRB is evidence that objectively and logically supports the claim. A PRB is a reason to accept the belief because of some external factor (such as fear, a threat, or a benefit or harm that may stem from the belief) that is relevant to what a person values but is not relevant to the truth or falsity of the claim. For example, it might be prudent to not fail the son of your department chairperson because you fear he will make life tough for you. However, this does not provide evidence for the claim that the son deserves to pass the class.

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 926 Total Answer Attempts   65%
 598 Correctly Popped Fallacies
 328 Incorrectly Un/Popped
posted by wikiworldorder     url: cfr.org/weap...

Most Common Responses

 
381 - Appeal to Fear
217 - Appeal to the Consequences of a Belief
20 - Appeal to Belief
20 - Begging the Question
19 - Appeal to Emotion
17 - Misleading Vividness
17 - Appeal to Authority
16 - Appeal to Flattery
15 - Ignoring a Common Cause
15 - Appeal to Popularity
13 - Appeal to Spite
13 - Appeal to Common Practice
12 - Hasty Generalization
12 - Burden of Proof
11 - Middle Ground
11 - Appeal to Ridicule
10 - Peer Pressure
10 - Biased Generalization
10 - Guilt by Association
9 - Confusing Cause and Effect
8 - Poisoning the Well
7 - False Dilemma
7 - Fallacy of Composition
7 - Special Pleading
6 - Relativist Fallacy
6 - Ad Hominem Tu Quoque
6 - Red Herring
5 - Appeal to Tradition
5 - Slippery Slope
5 - Post Hoc
4 - Fallacy of Division
4 - Circumstantial Ad Hominem
2 - Ad Hominem
2 - Appeal to Pity
2 - Personal Attack
1 - Spotlight
1 - Appeal to Novelty

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* Fallacious statements are usually paired with a random image of a person who never spoke those words.
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