A logical fallacy is defined as a reasoning that is determined to be logically incorrect and which goes on to undermine the logical validity of the argument or proposition and therefore permits its recognition of being unsound. Notwithstanding its soundness, all registers and manners of speech can demonstrate fallacies. Because of the variety of their structure and application, fallacies pose a challenge to be classified in order to satisfy all practitioners. Therefore, the common practice is to classify fallacies strictly with either their structure or their content, for example, classifying them between formal and informal fallacies, respectively. The classification of informal fallacies may be further subdivided into various categories, such as linguistic, relevance through omission, relevance through intrusion and relevance through presumption. On the other hand, fallacies can be classified by the process by which they take place, such as material fallacies (pertaining to content), verbal fallacies (linguistic) and again from formal fallacies (errors in reference). From this, it can be ascertained that there is no clear-cut and efficient way to actually classify logical fallacies. However, the best way to be conversant on fallacies and to identify one in an exercise of logical reasoning would be to know some common kinds of fallacies one may come to encounter. ‘
A formal policy is an error in logic that can be seen in the argument’s form. All formal fallacies are in fact specific instances of non-sequitur. They include appeals to probability which entails taking something for granted because it would probably or might be the case; argument from fallacy entails that if an argument for some conclusion is fallacious then the conclusion is fallacious and the masked man fallacy which consists of substituting identical designators in a true statement can lead it to become a false one. As we can see, formal fallacies are structural and depend on how an argument has been created rather than the content of the argument itself.
Informal fallacies are fallacies that arise out of the content of the argument itself. As a consequence, the instances of informal fallacies are fairly numerous and many of them have found themselves to be embedded in popular perception and culture. Some very common informal fallacies are: argument to moderation that assumes a compromise between two positions are always correct; definist fallacy that consists of creating confusion between two notions by defining one in terms of the other; divine fallacy involves something incredible could be explained by the existence of a divine or supernatural entity; equivocation which is committed when a term is misleadingly used which has more than a single meaning; false attribution that pertains to how an advocate appeals to irrelevant, unqualified, unidentified, biased or fabricated sources in support of an argument; fallacy of quoting out of context where selective excerpts are decontextualized from the original context in such a way that the source’s original meaning becomes distorted; false authority where using an expert of dubious credentials or using only one opinion to sell a product or an idea; false equivalence where it involves describing a situation of logical and apparent equivalence when in fact there are none; McNamara fallacy which involves making a decision solely on the basis of qualitative observations while discounting every other kind of consideration; nirvana fallacy where solutions to problems are rejected because they are not perfect; proof by assertion where regardless of the contradiction determined to be existing in the argument, the argument is repeated over and over again; reification where an abstract is treated as a real thing in order to validate an argument; circular reasoning where the advocate begins with something that they aim to end up with, often called “assuming the conclusion”; no true Scotsman where a generalization is made true by changing the generalization to exclude a counter-example; cherry picking where selective citations of data are made in support of an argument while a significant part of it are omitted that may contradict the argument; false analogy which involves an argument by analogy where the analogy is poorly suited; correlation without causation where a faulty assumption is made where since there is a correlation between two variables, one is caused by the other; wrong direction where cause and effect are reverse; the cause is thought to be the effect and the effect is thought to be the cause; fallacy of the single cause where it is assumed that there is one, single cause of an outcome when in reality there might be many causes; regressive fallacy where a cause is ascribed where one may not exist in the first place; appeal to the stone which involves dismissing an argument for its absurdity without demonstrating proof to establish its absurdity; argument from ignorance which consists of assuming that a claim is true because it has not been or it could not be proven false; argument from silence where a claim is assumed to be true based upon the absence of textual or spoken evidence from an authoritative source; ad hominem which involves attacking the arguer rather than the argument; appeal to motive where an idea is dismissed by questioning the motives of the proposer.
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