05 Nov Tu Quoque – FT#12
Tu Quoque is another Latin one – it literally means “You too.” It’s a particular type of Red Herring fallacy where the speaker avoids responding to a criticism by distracting the listener with claims that other people (ideally the one doing the criticizing) have also done similar bad things.
It is a fallacy because the original point is not addressed by the response – instead the speaker moves the conversation away from their shortcomings and on to somebody else.
The examples used in this episode will be coming soon.
Here are the links to the stories we talked about
Voting is not a logical fallacy: https://www.newstatesman.com/world/north-america/2018/10/stealing-election-georgia-everything-you-need-know-about-voter
And finally, some things we really don’t have time to talk about:
- A couple of idiots called Jacob Wohl and Jack Burkman tried to pull off the stupidest crime ever – framing Robert Mueller for rape. Despite multiple reports of women coming forward having been offered money to claim Mueller raped them, the pair still went ahead with an amazingly inept press conference, which they held at a Holiday Inn in Rosslyn, Virginia. Unfortunately the alleged victim was unable to make it at the last minute. The FBI are now investigating, in between bouts of uncontrollable laughter.
- 14 pipe bombs were mailed to prominent people and organisations who Trump had frequently criticised, and despite Republicans claiming it was a false flag operation, the bomber turned out to be a Trump supporter. Trump, of course, denies any responsibility. We might have to do Guilt by Association as our next fallacy.
- Trump finally condemned Saudi Arabia for the murder of Washington Post reporter Jamal Khashoggi, but his problem wasn’t so much with the execution, as with how the execution was executed. He said “They had a very bad original concept, it was carried out poorly and the cover-up was the worst in the history of cover-ups.” Basically, he stopped just short of saying “I would have done a much better job. I’m the best at covering up murders. Everybody says so.”
- Two weeks ago, Trump promoted the conspiracy theory that Jewish billionaire George Soros was funding an invasion of dangerous immigrants. Last week, a man named Robert Bowers, posting on far-right social network Gab, blamed a Jewish organisation for “bringing invaders in that kill our people.” and said “Screw your optics, I’m going in”. Then he walked into a synagogue with an AR-15 and killed 11 people. Trump, of course, denies any responsibility. Forget what I said earlier, we’re doing Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc next.
- On her recent trip to Cairo, Melania racked up a $95,000 hotel bill, in a hotel she stayed in for 6 hours, where the most expensive suite is $700 a night. I know divorce lawyers are expensive, but I didn’t know you could order them on room service.
- Trump is sending anywhere from 5,000 to 15,000 troops to the border to deal with the imminent arrival of the Central American migrant caravan. No word so far on what the troops will do for the 7 weeks it’s likely to take the refugees to walk the nearly 1000 miles they still have to go. So long as the troops are on the way before the midterms, we’re not sure Trump cares that much.
- Just for fun, though, in case any soldiers are still there when the migrant caravan arrives, this week Trump said he had authorised them to shoot any people throwing rocks at soldiers, because ‘there’s not much difference’ between a rock and a gun. Leaving aside for a moment that shooting unarmed civilians is probably a war crime, I think he’s onto something here. Can we just swap people’s AR15s for a bag of gravel? After all, there’s not much difference.
- Trump wants to end birthright citizenship. The fact that it’s literally guaranteed by the 14th amendment doesn’t seem to bother him, as he says he’s been told he can do it by executive order by talented legal scholars. Let’s face it, Trump does not have access to any talented legal scholars. If he did, he wouldn’t need Rudy Giuliani.
- Former Fox News correspondent Heather Nauert is apparently Trump’s top pick for the next UN ambassador. Quick reminder, this is the woman who cited the D-Day landings as an example of the strong relationship the US has with Germany.
- The Topeka Capital-Journal reported that a rally in Kansas with Trump’s world-altering rabble-rousing radical campaign supremo Steve Bannon attracted around 25 people in a Holiday Inn in North Topeka, including the event’s organisers and a group following Mr Bannon for a documentary. Invites for the rally, dubbed “Red Tide Rising”, were sent out via text message. Mr Bannon told those gathered that if Trump supporters did not vote in the midterm elections “we’re going to lose this”. Looks like it’s going to be a very close run thing if 25 is going to make the difference – did I say 25 I meant 63 Million!