header('Access-Control-Allow-Origin: http://www.inquirytext.org/');

Archive for Appeal to Fear

Appeal To Fear

July 14, 2012 No Comments

Appeal to Fear: self-explanatory emotion – usually involves making a threat out to be (a) strong (b) present and (c) irrational.

Appeal to Fear, Definitional Matters

Appeal To Confidence

July 13, 2012 No Comments

Appeal to Confidence: the opposite of fear – the threat isn’t as strong as it is made out, is a long way off, or isn’t irrational.

Appeal to Confidence, Definitional Matters
2008 McCain 527 Let Freedom Ring: I Won’t Expand My Business

2008 McCain 527 Let Freedom Ring: I Won’t Expand My Business

July 9, 2012 No Comments

From a 527 called 'Let Freedom Ring', an ad in which a small business man claims that he wants to expand his business but won't if Obama is elected President.

2008 Hillary Ad – Red Phone

2008 Hillary Ad – Red Phone

June 26, 2012 No Comments

Famous example from the 2008 Democratic primary from Hillary Clinton, suggesting Obama wasn't prepared for the Presidency:

Obama’s “Kill Romney strategy”

Obama’s “Kill Romney strategy”

June 24, 2012 No Comments

Romney ad from late Spring 2012, seeking to raise money for the general election campaign.

2004 Bush Ad – Changing World
2004 Bush Ad – 527 Progress for America: Ashley
The ‘Attachment snowball’

The ‘Attachment snowball’

April 10, 2011 No Comments

From Sears and Sears' parenting book "The Baby Book: Everything You Need to Know About Your Baby From Birth to Age Two":

2004 Bush Ad – Wolves

2004 Bush Ad – Wolves

April 10, 2011 No Comments

Run during the closing weeks of the 2004 Bush-Kerry Presidential Campaign (released 10/18/2004).

1988 Presidential Debate – Bernard Shaw’s question

1988 Presidential Debate – Bernard Shaw’s question

April 9, 2011 No Comments

In an infamous moment from the 1988 Presidential debate, the moderator Bernard Shaw asked Dukakis if his wife were raped and murder, would he still oppose the death penalty.

Page 1 of 212»

Fake Expert

Fake Expert: A fallacious appeal to authority in which the 'expert' is not an expert at all.

Expert in the wrong domain

Expert in the wrong domain: a fallacious version of an appeal to authority - i.e. appealing to a doctor...

Slippery Slope

Slippery slope: If we take one step, we’ll have to take all the rest of them because there’s no...

Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc

Post hoc ergo propter hoc: “After this, therefore because of this”, a fallacy in reasoning about causes. (I took...

Poisoning The Well

Poisoning the well: Telling the audience what to think of a speaker when you’re introducing the speaker (My next...

Loaded Question

Loaded question: A question with an unacceptable pre-supposition. (Why do you hate America so much? – Stephen Colbert)

Fallacies of Relevance

Fallacies of Relevance: Bringing up irrelevant considerations in an effort to distract listener from the merits of the actual...

Guilt By Association

Guilt by Association: You are just the same as X, and X is terrible. Therefore, you’re terrible (the conclusion...

Genetic Fallacy

Genetic fallacy: Saying that some idea’s history or origin (genesis) means it is true/false.


Equivocation: when an argument relies on an ambiguous word (a word with more than one possible meaning), shifting in...


Enthymeme: general term for an argument with a gap (missing premise)

Confusing Correlation With Causation

Confusing Correlation With Causation: (Buying gas is correlated with owning a car. Clearly, buying gas causes car ownership.)

Confirmation Bias

Confirmation bias: seeing what you believe; interpreting observations/data to match a conclusion you already have in mind.

Undermining Biography

Undermining Biography: sewing seeds of doubt due to questionable background. Also known as ‘swiftboating’.