The Fallacy Detective

Nathan & Hans Bluedorn

SKU: 8339  |  ISBN: 974531502

Thirty-Eight Lessons on How to Recognize Bad Reasoning

A book that introduces Catholic logic and critical thinking by blowing up the tricksterism of Madison Avenue advertising, campaign sloganeering, media grandstanding, product endorsements, and billboard jingoism. Fun to use. Self-teaching, not intimidating. Starts with skills you can use right way. A fallacy is an error in logic, a place where someone has made a mistake in his thinking. These are fallacies, with more in the book to smile your way to exercising your mind and learning how to identify screwy thinking:

  • A cloud is 90% water. A watermelon is 90% water. Therefore, since a plane can fly through a cloud, a plane can fly through a watermelon.
  • Christianity came along in the first century, and a few hundred years after that, the Roman Empire fell, Christianity must have made it fall.
  • "A low income level seems to be the greatest factor contributing to why some families, where both parents work full time, are still below the poverty line."
  • "The bristlecone pine trees are said to live for thousands of years. That's why I take a capsule a day of dried bristlecone pine bark. I think it will help me live longer."
  • "Ive been looking into the history of wars. It seems as if, just before any war, all the countries involved build large armies. I think that the building of a large army causes war."
  • Magazine ad: "Does the pain medication you use now start to work in less than one second?"
  • In a commercial, a handsome man with big, bulging muscles is seen working out on the new Gutwrencher exercise machine. "Tone up your muscles in two weeks!" it says.

GET A GRIP ON ALL THE BASIC HEAD GAMES: Red herring fallacies ad hominem (against the man) attacks * genetic fallacy (attacking an argument for where it began, how it began, or who began it)* faulty appeal to authority * appeal to the people * straw man * circular reasoning * loaded question * part-to-whole * whole-to-part * either-or * making false assumptions * hasty generalizations * weak analogy post hoc ergo propter hoc (after this, therefore, because of this) * proof by lack of evidence * bandwagon * appeal to pity * repetition * propaganda * snob appeal * appeal to Tradition and Hi-tech.

Geared for junior high and older, but it would make great table talk for whatever age. Each of the 36 lessons has exercises, with an Answer Key at the back. Includes THE FALLACY DETECTIVE GAME, giving you, family, and friends an entertaining way to spot and make up your own examples of fallacies. Written specifically from a Christian worldview with practical relevancy to the crisis in media bias. Learn not just to think, but to think right.

233 pages. Softcover. Illustrated. Answer Key.