Monthly Archives: July 2012

Fallacies By Example, Part One

Thanks to Andrew Orlowski at The Register, here is some Appeal to Consequences:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/06/28/climate_survey_usa_uk_canada/

Brit global warming skeptics now outnumber believers

Nothing like a taste of climate policy to put you off

and

It would seem that the more people hear the arguments and study the policies, the less they like them.

These suggest that people will become skeptics on the question of whether global warming is true or false after reading about suggested policies for dealing with it. Look at the negative form of the Appeal to Consequences:

If P, then Q will occur.

Q is undesirable.

Therefore, P is false.

Orlowski is suggesting that people do not like suggested policies for dealing with global warming (“Q is undesirable”), and that therefore they become skeptics (“Therefore, P is false.”). Of course, it’s not possible to tell whether global warming is happening, or how it is caused, by looking at suggested policy responses to it.