Understanding Fallacies

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Inductive Fallacy

Slothful Induction

The proper conclusion of an inductive argument is denied despite the evidence to the contrary.

Example

  1. Hugo has had twelve accidents n the last six months, yet he insists that it is just a coincidence and not his fault. (Inductively, the evidence is overwhelming that it is his fault. This example borrowed from Barker, p. 189)
  2. Poll after poll shows that the N.D.P will win fewer than ten seats in Parliament. Yet the party leader insists that the party is doing much better than the polls suggest. (The N.D.P. in fact got nine seats.)

Proof

About all you can do in such a case is to point to the strength of the inference.

Reference

Barker: 189

Reference Guide
Fallacy Summary

The content of this Fallacy originated from Stephen Downes Guide to Logical Fallacies.

 

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